***We will be closed this Sunday, September 3rd, for Labor Day.***
Last week I drove to Pennsylvania to spend a few days with my aunt who comes to visit ME for two weeks every spring. I hadn’t been back in a couple of years, so when Farmer Bob made the suggestion that I take a vacation, I was excited to go!
I’m from Pennsylvania Dutch country, near Lancaster County, PA, and it sure did feel good to get back to all those familiar towns, foods, shopping, quilt shops, and the sight of Amish buggies on the road. Aunt Ina drove me past my grandmothers’ and great grandmother’s houses to see them…sure brought back lots of memories. I was so pleased to see them all occupied by families that love them. My favorite grandmother’s (Aunt Ina’s mother) house is for sale. I sure hope someone nice buys it. Here’s my great grandparents’ farm:
I got to see my great aunt’s big old Victorian house, too. I can still “walk” through that house in my memory…even smell her chicken roasting. Isn’t that funny how so much memory is tied up in aromas? Grandma Heller’s house is chicken corn soup and sour cherry pies, Grandma Hoffman’s house is breakfast eggs frying in butter, Great Aunt Vida’s house is roast chicken and lima beans. I never was in my Great Grandmother Kimmel’s house on the farm….she and Grandpa Kimmel died long before I was born. I imagine it smelled like apple pies…Grandma said there was an apple orchard behind the house where, as a child, she would hide in the trees to read her books when there was work to be done. 🙂
We spent one day in Lancaster County. Most people know that as “Amish Country.” It really is the home of a large group of Amish families and beautiful farms. Towns have funny names: Bird in Hand, Intercourse, Blue Ball. Buffets in restaurants are called “smorgasbords,” and here’s a picture of me with Aunt Ina enjoying some traditional PA Dutch food at the Bird in Hand Family Restaurant. If you click on that link, you can go to their website and see the menu for some of the dishes they have. Yummy!Continue Reading →
What is that big mysterious brown, empty bug shell sticking on the side of tree? Or, in this case, on the side of our pullet house? It’s a cicada! Imagine my delight when I was cleaning cobwebs off the pullet house and found this recently emerged cicada resting on its shell. Can you see it here?
Cicada emerging from its shell
Here’s another shot from a different angle with different lighting:
Cicada emerging from its shell
This is truly one of nature’s miracles, and it’s a beauty! I’m not sure what species it is, but it’s not the one that appears in huge quantities every 13 or 17 years. Those aren’t green. If you want to learn more about cicadas, you can go to this website. It’s kinda fun, too…your cursor turns into a tiny cicada on this website.Continue Reading →
We basically have two completely different areas of our farm, one behind the house on “this side” of the creek, and the other is the Back Forty. Here is the Back Forty.
The Back Forty
Clarence and Peanut Butter occupy the pasture on this side of the creek. They keep our flock of laying hens company. Here is their pasture (behind the hay bales). That’s Brody in the foreground on the pond dam. Continue Reading →
We’ve added a new collectible jar to our popular honey bear bank jars, and we think you’ll love it! It’s called a “Muth” jar, named after it’s 19th century inventor. During the 1800’s in America, this was the most popular honey jar, and no wonder…it’s just beautiful!
Fox Trot Farm Muth Honey Jar
Here’s a picture I borrowed from the Internet, so you can see the gorgeous embossed side:Continue Reading →
Farm work is dirty work! There’s just no way around it, so we wear our work clothes and just get busy. Can’t worry about the dirt; it’ll wash out/off, after all, right? (We do LOTS of laundry and take many showers every single day!)
In a previous blog post, I took you with me to do chores (read about thathere), but I left out the dirty work. There’s plenty!
First up are the hen houses. Our 40 little biddies have grown up into young pullets. They are still in their little house, so you can imagine how often we need to clean that out. Here they are, almost grown up, healthy and happy and beautiful.
So many pullets!
I do wear a painters mask when I clean out the hen house because it generates so much dust. That picture above is after I’ve already cleaned it and put down fresh pine shavings. Here’s a picture of my golf cart full of the dirty chicken litter to haul to the compost pile. I love my golf cart and its hydrolic dump bed, by the way.Continue Reading →
Another slow cooker recipe for you! Barbacoa is a slow roasted lamb dish that we had in Mexico and we fell in love with the flavors and textures of the lamb, which is traditionally served in tacos. I did some research and found that pits are dug and the lamb is roasted with lots of chiles and spices for several hours. Of course, that’s not practical for most of us, so I did some more research and gleaned methods and ingredients from several different websites to make this Fox Trot Farm Barbacoa dish yesterday, and Farmer Bob pronounced it a winner! Continue Reading →
This morning I decided you might like to share my morning chores with me. I get a lot of exclamations of “That’s a LOT of work!” when folks come to visit the farm. Well, yes, it IS a lot of work, but it’s joyful work. We love our animals and they love us. They greet us every morning. Actually, they fuss at us to hurry up with their breakfast!
I start off my chores with a visit to the brooder house very early to open their door so the birds can get outside. Then, later in the morning, I go back to start my chores in earnest and feed and water our young pullets. They make quite a mess, so I have to clean up the feeder and waterer before I can refill them.
Our young pullets
The whole time I’m taking care of the pullets, Rosie, Samson & Delilah are fussing at me to hurry up. I take them their feed, make sure they have plenty of mineral, replenish their hay and clean and fill their big water bowl.Continue Reading →
I stopped at Providence Road Market the other day on my way home from errands. I love this little produce stand! It’s just north of Waxhaw and everything is displayed so beautifully!
Providence Produce Market
I was picking out a few ears of corn for supper and noticed that the market lady was cleaning extra husks from the corn and dropping them into a box. I told her that I have a pet pot belly pig and asked if I could have her discarded corn husks. She was so nice to put them in a bag for me to take home to Pork Chop. I got out my phone and showed her a picture of our Pork Chop….awww….she said, “He’s never going to BECOME a pork shop, right?” hahahah Right! He’s a pet, not dinner! Continue Reading →