Fox Trot Farm

Grass Fed Lamb, Fresh Eggs, Honey, Soap, Tours, & Farm Fun!

Pretty lamb

October 20, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
0 comments

This ewe gave us the prettiest lamb of all!

Our sheep aren’t pets, you know. We haven’t named most of the ewes, but we couldn’t resist giving a few of them names due to their outstanding personality or physical characteristics: Margaret Thatcher because she was always the bold leader as she was a young ewe; Chesterfield because her voice sounds like she’s been smoking filterless Chesterfield cigarettes, S’Mores because her coloring reminded Farmer Bob of the graham cracker, chocolate bar, marshmallow treat, and so on. We love all our ewes and take good care of them, even those without names.

This girl doesn’t have a name but maybe we should give her one, because she’s given us the prettiest lamb I think we’ve ever had. Just look at that little white one. Look at that little pink nose!

Pretty lamb

prettiest lamb

If this is a little girl, I think we’ll keep her!

We’re going to be starting back to the Waxhaw Farmer’s market soon and I need to get busy making soap to build my inventory. It’s supposed to be a rainy day today, so I’ll spend the whole day doing that. I have a quilt to finish for a friend, and I’ve been invited to join another good friend at her family’s beach house for a few days’ escape next week, and no way am I going to pass that up. Farmer Bob is doing better every day with his arm and is able to drive his tractor now. Yay! Life is busier and more blessed than ever, it seems!

We’ll be open for business tomorrow, Sunday, from 1:00-5:00 with our guided tour at 2:00. It’s supposed to be a lovely, sunny, cool, autumn day so we hope you’ll come for a visit and we’ll show you all our new baby lambs. They are getting more independent and ganging up for races, and hopping all over the pasture with the joy of living.

In the meantime, here’s my favorite recent picture of the Back Forty sky. It’s just magical and is a new gift every day.

Back Forty Sky

EIEIO!
Debbie

Baby Lambs

October 17, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
1 Comment

We have baby lambs!

We have baby lambs! Boy, do we ever have baby lambs! Twenty-three at the last count! Some are bouncing all over the pasture, and others are just wobbly newborns like these.

Newborn Lambs

Hobart, our Anatolian Shepherd, is doing a great job guarding his growing flock. He eats all the afterbirth and chases away all the buzzards who are attracted by the scent. They would kill newborn lambs, but not when Hobart is on duty.

Hobart and his Flock

Mommas get their newborns up and moving within 10 minutes of birth, and they get strong quickly on their mother’s rich milk. See them running to keep up with their momma? Continue Reading →

Homeschoolers Tour

October 7, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
0 comments

Homeschoolers visit, embroidered tote, and news from the farm

What a fun week we had with two private group tours! Friday, a delightful group of homeschoolers came for an educational tour. They learned all about animal husbandry and had loads of fun in the process! Here, Farmer Bob is teaching them about the predators we have in our area. A visit to our farm counts as a “school day” for homeschoolers. We give the parents handouts to help them follow up with their children when they get home about all the things they learned about at the farm.

Homeschoolers Tour

They get to make the run across the pond dam. I’m thinking this may be a highlight of every group tour of school age children. I remember when I was their age, and a clear downhill stretch of lane was an invitation to run just for the joy of it!

Pond Dam Run

Farmer Bob’s arm is healing and he says that sometimes he feels like he has a 9 volt battery under his skin as the cut nerves mend. I’m so grateful for friends that help me do things that Bob would normally do. Here, our friend and farm sitter, Amy, helps me worm the sheep. We had another guy friend come and help with the heavy lifting of fence panels. Farmer Bob filled the drenchers and his friend passed them to Amy and me. Amy and I even got in the pen with the three big rams! I didn’t get any pictures of that because we were in a hurry to get the job finished and get away from them.

In case you’re wondering what the blue stripes are, we mark each sheep as soon as we finish worming them so we know who hasn’t been done.

Amy Worming Sheep

This past week I hosted a luncheon for our friend Mary, who has had to disperse her flock of Leicester Longwool sheep. (When you come to our farm you’ll meet Martha, who was one of Mary’s flock of these heritage sheep.) We girls are part of a wonderful group of friends who are always there to support each other when life hands us challenges. I love being part of such a happy, giving group of women.

We came bearing gifts for Mary to cheer her up and let her know we have her back. I’m learning how to use my embroidery machine, so I stepped outside my box of knowledge and figured out how to do machine applique in the hoop of my machine and made her a tote bag. I love these sheep, and so did Mary! I’ll be doing more of this because it was so much fun to make. I put a different sheep on each side of the bag.

sheep applique tote bag

sheep applique tote bag

Other news from the farm:

-We have more new lambs! I think the count is 7 babies now, with 16 more ewes due any day. Our flock is growing quickly!
-We’ll be back at the Waxhaw Farmer’s Market on October 27th with honey and soap to sell.
-We’re gearing up to get some more meat processed and will have it for sale at the Waxhaw Farmer’s Market on Saturday, November 3rd, and at our farm market here on Fox Trot Farm on Sunday, November 4th. We can’t wait to put lamb chops, racks, legs, kabobs, and all our favorite dishes back on our own menu, and we hope you will enjoy our lamb, too!

Call or text if you’d like to come by and pick up some of our farm goods during the week or to schedule a private group tour for 10 or more. 803-804-3541 is my cell number. We are open to the public most Sunday afternoons from 1:00-5:00, with a guided tour at 2:00. Hope to see you soon!

EIEIO!
Debbie

 

 

children feeding chickens on fox trot farm

October 4, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
1 Comment

Monroe Park & Rec Tour and New Lambs!

Wow, did we ever have a good time yesterday with this Monroe Park & Rec group! The children were absolutely delightful, and so were their adult chaperones.

I think Farmer Bob was trying to make a scary coyote face here. hahaha The children loved seeing a coyote (stuffed) up close. They were all so polite, and asked very good questions.

Wiley Coyote  Continue Reading →

Birthday Card

October 2, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
0 comments

Hey, Ewes Guys! And News from the Farm

Isn’t this just the cutest birthday card ever???? Farmer Bob’s cousin Carol sent it to me for my birthday.

Birthday Card

News from the farm:

-Farmer Bob continues to improve and is finding his arm brace uncomfortable. Of course it is! Only 3 1/2 more weeks till it comes off, and then PT begins.

-Our friend Ed did a great job mowing the grass and with all the landscaping . He and Farmer Bob cleaned up and stored lots of empty bee boxes. Thank you so much for your help Ed!

-We have two group tours scheduled for this week and are looking forward to having our visitors here and making new friends. Maybe there will be new babies for them to see! 

-We worked our bees Saturday evening, getting them ready for winter. I found out that mosquitoes can’t bite me through my beekeeper’s suit! I’ll be bottling more honey today.

-We will be taking lambs for processing in a couple of weeks and will be fully restocked by the end of the month.

-We’ll be returning to the Waxhaw Farmer’s Market on October 27th to sell our eggs and soap and take preorders for lamb.

Autumn is a beautiful time of year on the farm and we’re looking forward to cooler weather and hope it comes soon! Come see us on Sunday afternoons when our farm market is open. Guided tour at 2:00. Group tours by reservation. Call ahead to pick up eggs during the week. 803-804-3541.

EIEIO!
Debbie

 

Border Collies and Sheep

September 30, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
2 Comments

Border Collies want to work!

Every evening, Farmer Bob and I take the border collies (along with the rest of our pack) to the Back Forty. We check on the ewes to see if they’ve had any lambs, we inspect fences, we enjoy the peace and beauty of the pasture, and the old pond, the forest and the SKY. It’s so quiet in the early evening here on the farm. Everyone is relaxed. Well, except for the border collies! They see those sheep and they want to round them up!

Border Collies and Sheep

Clarence and Peanut Butter are in the pasture we bring the dogs through, and often Carly or Blaire will bring them to us. Clarence isn’t wild about ANYONE making him move (haha he’s stubborn), but the border collies are persistent. They are predators and horses/mules/donkeys are indeed prey animals, and so Clarence and Peanut Butter MOVE. After Farmer Bob retires in June, he’s going to take some training with the collies, and hopes to get good enough to participate in trials. That will be fun for him! Continue Reading →

Pregnant Ewes

September 26, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
2 Comments

Still waiting, Farmer Bob and Welsh Harlequins get their winter plumage

Just look at this lineup! These ewes have udders that are filling up, a sure sign that we’ll be seeing lambs soon. For now, we all wait!

Pregnant Ewes

Farmer Bob continues to do well after his surgery, with no sign of infection and no pain. Of course, his arm is immobilized, so that helps. Friday we go back to the surgeon and he’ll replace the splint with an adjustable brace. Then he’ll have PT once a week, where they’ll slowly adjust the brace to extend his arm over the next month. He rode on the golf cart with me while I did chores last evening. I know he’s thinking about all he has to do but can’t. Continue Reading →

Peanut Butter

September 23, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
0 comments

Autumn Days & Market Schedule

I’m getting started on chores earlier so that I don’t get caught after dark, walking through all those awful HUGE spider webs that form here in the Autumn. It’s STILL so hot at 5:00, however, and I can’t wait till cooler weather arrives. I’m sure these pregnant ewes are thinking the same thing. Our plan to move lambing to fall seems to be paying off. These girls have stayed very healthy all summer long, and haven’t shown the stress they used to from dealing with the heat AND parasites AND making milk for their lambs over the hot summer months.

Pregnant Ewes

Our Anatolian Shepherd, Turk, is so happy these days. He is bonded with these rams and they all seem to love each other. Often, I find a ram standing next to him while he’s lying on the ground. Sometimes they all lie down together and he sleeps with his head resting on a ram. They are buddies.  Continue Reading →

Hobart the Anatolian Shepherd

September 21, 2018
by Deborah Burgess
3 Comments

1st Day Post-op, Hobart, and spider webs

I’m so pleased with how Farmer Bob is doing today. He opted not to be put under anesthesia and so he didn’t have all the side effects from that, although the surgeon did say he talked nonstop during surgery and told him all kinds of golf stories. I guess the “truth serum” didn’t work! hahahaha The surgeon ALSO told me he was quite pleased with how the surgery went and that he should be out of the arm brace in a month, although he’ll have another couple months of weekly physical therapy after that. He’ll have to pace himself.

It was a very long day yesterday, but I got him home, settled in, fed, and went out to feed the animals as soon as I got finished with taking care of Farmer Bob.  Hobart was so happy to report that there were no new lambs, and he had scared away all the bad things so his sheep were safe.

Hobart the Anatolian Shepherd

Hobart’s on duty. Can you see that his tail is wagging? He’s so happy to see me!

Even though I hurried, it was still past dark till I got finished. I walked through THREE of these:

brown orb weaver 1 - Neoscona crucifera

(this picture is from Bug Guide)

She’s a brown orb weaver spider. Walking through their webs is bound to happen this time of year because these spiders are huge and spin giant webs between anything, even between two trees 20 feet apart, and they hang right in the middle of the web. Ugh. I’m glad nobody was videotaping me last evening because I sure did some screaming and dancing! I’m planning to get my chores finished before dark today, needless to say.

Farmer Bob’s up and dressed and had his breakfast and is feeling good. The nerve block is still working, so he doesn’t feel his arm at all. We’ll have another 24 hours that way and I’m hoping that the pain isn’t terrible once it wears off. We’ve got something for that if he needs it, but he’s planning to stay quiet (well, I mean he’ll be still…he can’t stay quiet, hahaha) and rest so maybe it won’t be so bad.

Thank you all for keeping Farmer Bob and his surgeon in your prayers yesterday, and also for my favorite aunt, who had a good report from her surgeon and will be heading home today.

EIEIO!
Debbie