Sunday, November 27, 2011

Christmas Hams! Feral Hog Bacon and Sausage.

Boy Howdy do we have some treats for you this year! After a VERY successful Texas Feral Hog hunt we have Wild Hams and bacon available in limited Supply, as well as a variety of Wild Sausages. I kept back a few tenderloins for special friends but everything else got ground, cured, or smoked. In some cases all of the above! Ian will have the sausage list ready in a few days and yes Fabian there will be Lanjaiger! Boerwaars are drying and lots of other porky goodness! We also have plenty of Duroc and Berkshire hogs available for your pleasure. And let's not forget the dry cured hams! In fact with everyone wanting bacon, Chops, ribs, roasts, steaks and cushion are in abundance. Beef shares are available for early January and we have plenty under inspection for those of you looking for just a roast or a few steaks, The ground beef sale is still on through the New Year and we have Gift certificates available for farm members and inspected products both. Our partial move is under way and we should be working the Hill Ranch by late January, Give us a call and plan a visit! Lambs and Goat Kids have arrived at the Home Place, Calves are on on Pasture and our PBS spot will air in February or March, Giving you a first hand look at what we do, how we do it, and why. 
Anyone wanting Hides for the next year needs to reserve one now, and the Muley(polled Cattle) skulls are spoken for through May.  I took Jane's advice and got Ol' Marcel's head mounted, he was such a beautiful example of the Aberdeen Angus that I felt he needed to "Hang Around" for folks to see. He will go in the office at Hill Ranch right next to Cal Poly Special. Remind me to tell you his story some day. We will only have 4 bison to go this spring so reserve early or you may miss out! Beefalo will be ready to process then as well.
December lambs are nearly sold out and the next crop won't be ready until late spring.
Ken is going to take over the poultry operation and we will have a larger variety of birds next year.(Lord knows that I wasn't going to do it! You all know how I feel about birds!)
I've been asked to do a post on production and transparency so stay tuned, My opinions tend to rub some folks the wrong way but hey, I gotta be me! Until then, take care and may the Lord keep you well.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Occupy What?

I think that the Occupy movement has lost its message and devolved into nothing more than an excuse to do nothing and demand everything. You want to impress me? Do something besides sit on your backsides whining. Plant some veggies in a garden or window box to help lower your food bills, Get involved in a community garden project to offset hunger in your neighborhood. Get together with friends, form a buying pool and get your meats from a local rancher or if you live in the city find one that delivers. You can raise a couple of hens in an apartment, yes I said an Apartment. If they allow birds you can have hens!  If you really want to impress the masses BE the Change that you want to see. Stop whining and get busy! No one owes you a living.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Holiday Goodies!

Whew! It's getting busy around here! Steers to the processor, Turkeys to be picked up, Hogs to be harvested, add to that fall lambing and a partial move and I think I need to be 3 people! We've made a few changes in our schedule so orders get out more quickly and thanks to Dr. Bacon a more streamlined ordering process is being designed.
Turkey and Beef share pick up is next Saturday unless prior arrangements are made. I would also like to ask that when you stop by the pastures please do not feed the animals, Most of the mother cows are friendly but there are a couple of old bossies out there that will HURT YOU if you try to get too close to their calves.
Sean is here visiting and has taken on the oversight of the sheep flocks while he is here. (Good Job for a Scottish Hill Shepherd on vacation!) I am having a great time relearning my all too rusty Gaelic! He takes the young dogs with him in groups of 3 so that by the time he heads back over the pond I will definitely know for sure if my instincts are correct on who to keep for working. He agrees with my choices on replacement Rams so far (He refers to them as Tups as they are all young Rams) and likes the breeding program that we have in place. YAY ME! ( I even got a compliment out of him on the quality of the lambs, and a compliment from a Scot is Hard to come by!) Remember to get your orders in for December Lambs, Commercial Crosses and Dorpers this round.
All of the bred cows have been ultrasounded and we have a 90 percent conception rate! Whoo HOO! 2 sets of twins were detected so we know to keep a closer eye on those ladies as calving time approaches. (yes I am praying for no Freemartens this next year) The remaining girls will go in with the bull next week to see if we can get them covered, any that don't take for the second year will rotate out of the breeding herds. All in all it has been a fairly good year with only a few OMG Call the Vet nights. The Truck problems fouled us up for a bit but we are back on track and grateful for your understanding and support. I thank God every day for the life that I am able to lead, the amazing people that I meet along the way, and the good friends that have come into my life. Thank you for being part of our farming and ranching family and have a wonderful Holiday Season. (Oh, Please tell Santa that I would LOVE a Camera for Christmas so I can add pictures to my blog posts! (The one on my cell phone is less than great)I promise that I will act surprised!) Until next time...
Dia, cairde maithe, beostoic sla'intiu'il, agus madra maith, coinni'onn du'inn cad iad. (God, good friends, healthy livestock, and a good dog, are what keep us)

Friday, November 4, 2011

Expansion under way!

I apologize for being lax in my blogging lately but we are expanding our operation and have been busy getting ready for the changes!
Our home place will still be here for members and friends to visit but we are moving back on to the Hill ranch as well. More room for the critters, bigger home pastures, and a complete renovation have given us a unique opportunity to focus on hands on experiences for members and friends. Those of you that remember Christmas Parties in the barn and long nights in the birthing stalls will be glad to know that we are planning to pick up the pace there and bring in the Small herd of Belties, the breeding flocks of Registered Dorper, karakul, and Khatadin Sheep, as well as a few surprises! The horses will go up to The Hill as well. Our Commercial crosses will stay on the leases but the move will give folks a better perspective of life on a working ranch, as well as a place for our members to stay when they come visit.
The Home place will still be home to the Grandma sheep, hogs, and veggie gardens.
Winter lambs will be ready to go in mid December so order early! 4 beeves went in on Monday and shares are going fast. Turkey's are almost sold out and there are only 2 pork shares available for next month. Thank you all so much for your loyalty and continued support! We wouldn't be here without you!