Thursday, August 17, 2017

Food Preserving and Fermenting

Sweet and dill pickles, cowboy candy(pickled sweet jalapenos), Fermented salsa, fermented carrots and onions

Traditional sauerkraut and hot pink spicy garlic sauerkraut!

Finally made my own sourdough starter from scratch and getting back to baking sourdough breads

8 qt crockpot full of the harvest that we turned into summer tomato sauce we froze.

Paleo chocolate chip zucchini muffins......to die for! 

Keeping super busy these days trying to use and preserve all that we can from the fields :)

Homeschool Prep

With piles of curriculum from our charter stacking in my office, I knew it was time to make a change. Our play room has been filthy, cluttered and quite frankly, only my last nerve. I decided to move special toys to the kids rooms and toss the rest and completely dismantle the play room, making way for an organized area to hold all our homeschool curriculum and things. Here are the before and after pictures, but the homeschool organizing space isn't complete, it's in need of some photos and other things on the walls. It's a good start to a big change though.

School will started Tuesday this week for the youngest 5(older ones start in a couple weeks), the kids were just dying to start. Their Timberdoodle curriculum contains more fun than one can imagine and they are anxious to do it all! I plan diary blog our year here. Subscribe to this blog for updates!
Before

After












Baby Finnley

It's been a bit since I updated. We are now 23 weeks and he he is as wiggly as they come. So far, he looks to be a bit on the big side, though not huge. He was 60% for weight at our 20 weeks ultrasound, weighing a whopping 11.7 ounces. So far I feel great, hardly remember I am pregnant most days as I just have a little belly, no other real notable symptoms other than extreme nesting. I haven't felt these surges of cleaning energy in years. My family thanks me for it, the fields, greenhouse, property, yards, and inside the house are all becoming organized and functional because my brain can't stand anything less!





Sunday, July 2, 2017

Farm Updates

The farm is in full, crazy summer gear. Produce is cranking along with the beautiful sunshine. Tomatoes are within reach dear friends!!! SO SO close! Hoping within 10-14 days they will enter shares. Peppers look to be about 3 weeks off. Eggplants maybe a month. Corn is almost waist high so its coming along nicely. Lots of great things on the horizon. This is shaping up to be a great season. We are so happy after such a wet, cold start. It humbles us and reminds us that amazing things come when we are patient and keep our noses to the grindstone pressing on through all the challenges. Last year it was gophers, this season.......weather. It will always be something, but us farmers are learning with each passing season to be more resilient.  

Join us eating the rainbow to vibrant health for our Organic Summer 2 CSA!! Limited spots available, reserve your organic weekly veggies at the link below! Share with your friends! GREAT price for delicious, seasonal, local veggies!! This season runs July 22-Sept 23rd:) We accept SNAP and Albany Farmer's market pick up will match your SNAP money up to $10, which covers HALF your share if you are picking up a small!!!!! AMAZING deal. http://www.bearbranchfarms.com/Summer-csa Our current customers are already boasting "accidentally losing 12 lbs since CSA started," "My digestion is improved and I am regular," "I have lost so many inches since eating all these veggies," and "My energy is improved from all the juicing we are doing, I feel amazing." Our customers are thrilled and we are right alongside them feeling the wellness. It takes a lot of strength and energy being 4 months pregnant and running a full CSA with Farmer's Market. These veggies truly power me through each and every day! We literally only have  a couple of spots for summer 2 so if you are interested, sign up quick!  


Some of our harvesting so far!



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We will have eggs at all our drops if you decide to join. They are not certified organic like our veggies, but they are fed mostly our veggies and given some commercial feed to keep them laying well. $4 a dozen. This is entirely our son Everett's business. He runs everything chicken related from feeding, watering, collecting and cleaning eggs to selling :) He keeps a great little flock of healthy girls.

 

Another thing, I will bring a handful of these awesome CSA boxes to each drop in case anyone is interested. They will be available for purchase for a modest $8. They are taking up space and we thought many of you may like them as they make veggie transport super easy, they fold closed with handles and fold flat for easy storage when not in use. Super easy to clean. They are used, but in pretty good shape with many years use left on them. :) 

Market this week:)



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In some previous shares from this season thus far:


Some farm Recipes: 

Some extra pics

Farm afternoon with Popsicles and their fav dog!
​Field breakfast

​Beautiful beets
​June 30th Tomatoes


Jefferson food pantry drop off
Kenna helping harvest a yummy patty pan squash!
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We thank all of you who made it to the end of this LONG farm update haha!  We are blessed to grow veggies for an amazing community. It is a gift. Eat well my friends!  

Click here to join our Summer 2 CSA. http://www.bearbranchfarms.com/Summer-csa
















Friday, June 16, 2017

6-16-17






With the mostly rainy and chilly June, we have gotten a lot of fun indoor projects done along with a lot of soggy harvests. The cold and wet harvests are balanced by warm indoor projects that pass the time waiting in between days we can till and hurry to get more plantings done. The dog days of farming have arrived in a wetter than normal fashion, but we are trying to just roll with the rain drops and enjoy not having to irrigate the crops. You know what they say, "irrigation irritation." Its a funny little truth that when the weather is beautiful, it simply adds to our work load. I do, however, long for sunny days to dip my toes in cool water and warm sand. I yearn to be kissed by the hot rays of the sun and enjoy bright long days full with warm outside work, dirt, picnics and cold drinks.

 For now we continue through what is the all too familiar rain and gloom and make the best of it passing time crocheting, sewing, playing candy land and eating too many Oreos. Gasp, certified organic farmers allow such garbage to enter the mouth of their babes? Grandpa sends what my kids lovingly call a "Grandpa box" each month to the farm. They look forward to all sugary goodness that Grandpa can stuff into this cardboard transporter and its a great incentive to "finish up the chores" so they can open it up! This month Grandpa stuffed somewhere around 10,265 Oreos in there. I swear sometimes these boxes are bottomless, but its such a treat for the kids. 

I finished up Madelynn's slouchy beanie yesterday and I think it suits her style quite well. I may still go back and add a crocheted flower to it as she requested. We will see what time allows for. And......baby Finnley officially has his first baby item, a flannel, minky blanket with silk edges lovingly made by mommy. The other kids were all taking turns wrapping themselves in it ooing and awwing about how soft it is and how cute he will be wrapped in it. Those days seem so far away, but they will be here so soon. Farming has a funny way of stealing summers right from under your nose, it takes and takes and takes until you beg fall to hurry up and it does and the work load finally lightens, but the short days and cold set in. With that, the long cycle of waiting for summer's arrival begins anew. I feel like this winter won't be so bad though, with a new little guy around to cuddle and all :) 


Sunday, June 11, 2017

First Farmer's Market of the Season!


















Friday's harvest was sunny, hailing and then soggy and wet, but that didn't stop anything. We worked hard as a family and got the job done. Days like these amaze me, they humble me. To see the amount we got harvested as a family of 10 in such weather conditions leaves me awestruck with gratitude. Our first CSA of the season started Saturday morning at the Albany Farmer's Market so between our first market and CSA pick up, we had quite the busy booth. Saturday was a great joy overall, seeing happy faces and small kids enjoying crisp sugar snap peas and carrots raw from our stand is always something that melts me. I enjoy watching my own kids help at the stand and offer tastes of some of the goodies we grow. I love when people quiz them about varieties and even my little ones can answer. It is a great way to really enjoy the fruits of our labor. I would say its on par to enjoying an amazing farm meal. There is a deep satisfaction in knowing we grew each item thoughtfully, organically, and as a family. Each item was then harvested with care, bundled, washed, packed into the cooler, loaded and brought to market. Once we get to market, we then display everything to look it's shiny best and pray customers like it! It is a very connected and deeply rewarding process in which you put everything into each vegetable from seed to plate. Cheers to veggies, may you know your farmers:)