Wednesday, March 27, 2013

2 farmer work load

The last week on the farm without Kim full time is proving to be a long one. In spring, something magic happens in the air that causes life to kick into high gear. I don't just mean the light and warmth that causes green growth and more eggs. It's like- every animal, great and small gets a whiff of spring and turns loony.

Without fail, I will spend the next weeks chasing down sheep who find every weakness in the fences, busted from winter weather. The chickens too, on the look for better grubs, with leap over electric netting and hide eggs across the farm. The goats are getting bigger and bolder, as noted by the picture of them head first in the bag of grain. It's time to start letting them roam the outside, so I'm starting barn modifications today to get them an outdoor pen. Plus, I'd like a double door into their pen, so we're not assaulted by adorable but nutty hooves every time you enter. The horses were gifted with more pasture yesterday, I ran fencing and they're currently kicking their heals in a larger, less muddy space. But they need a job to keep their energy level to an appropriate level. Spring makes the animals want SPACE and GRASS. So as a farmer, I've got to meet their needs and keep them safe. It's a tall order and it means a 5 gallon bucket full of tools within arm's reach for a few weeks until I've found every weak spot and expanded their reach. 

Plus the greenhouse needs more shelves for more seedlings. And there is still marketing to do. And pigs to prepare to's a two person job. And in two days, we'll be there.

Folks keep congratulating us on getting our business to a point where we both can be on farm. It's encouraging and so nice to hear. But the truth is- we're taking a HUGE risk. The finances of the farm are good in theory, but we just don't know what six months down the road will look like. But we can't grow with one farmer stretched too thin, and another spending too many hours away, making not enough cash to warrant her skills being applied elsewhere. Plus, we just won't know if we can succeed and grow if we don't try. We can't grow if we don't change and adapt. So we're scared, but optimistic and willing to make it work. We're willing to live with permanently tightened belts, and work 16 hours a day. It's worth it, and it's ours for the taking. We'll take it. 

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