We are finding ourselves already in the midst of Spring here on the farm! Grass is growing, flowers are blooming, the weather is warm, and the babies are snuggly. Goat babies. Kids.
It's my favorite time of year.
Join in on the fun by swinging by the Farm Stand or signing up for a class. In the meantime, here are some updates from us over here at Funny Banana Arms. (Sorry, Aaron came up with that pseudo-anagram like a year ago, and I just can't get it out of my head).
Spring CSA starts next week!
Yep, first things first, the Winter CSA is ending this week, and the Spring CSA starts next week. It will run through May 31st. Don't miss your chance to sign up -- there are only a few shares left!
If you've been to the Farm Stand lately, you know that we are selling out of eggs and milk quickly. We do anticipate that things will pick up again here soon. Winter is always a slow time on farms as chickens moult and don't get enough daylight to lay, and goats dry up before kidding again. But with the new goat babies comes more milk, AND we've recently rescued about 25 hens from a battery-cage operation, so production should really pick up soon! (Poor girls, they were in BAD shape when we got them, but they're finally figuring out what it means to be a chicken and free range. I'm honestly fairly certain they'd never seen grass before...)
The one way to guarantee yourself a regular supply of our delicious eggs and fresh milk is to purchase a CSA member share. Plus, it really helps support what we're doing. The more commitment we have from customers, the more goats we keep and the more hens we raise. Also, did I mention that we deliver?
You can find more information about our Egg CSA and sign up here:
And info about our Milk CSA can be found here: http://www.sunnycabanafarm.com/milk-csa.html
New Products in the Farm Stand
Although eggs and milk are skinny in the Farm Stand, I have just restocked the last batch of pomegranate-jalapeno jelly for this year. Get it while it lasts! We won't have more until pomegranate season in the Fall.
If you haven't tried it, be warned; this jelly is slightly addictive. It's just the right amount of spicy and sweet-tart. It's mostly pomegranate, organic, and I use a low sugar recipe, I promise you'll love it. It's a delicious snack with goat cheese or cream cheese and crackers. If you've ever tried to de-seed and juice a pomegranate, you know that this jelly is a labor of love. <3
I'm also excited to announce that Down Right Sudsy is now using our milk in her Goats Milk Lotion, and this lotion is amazing! My skin has been soooo dry this winter, and this lotion has just been a god-send. It absorbs really nicely and doesn't leave me feeling greasy at all. I kinda want to bathe in it. I mean, it worked for Cleopatra right? I like it so much that I decided to stock it in the Farm Stand. There's even a little sampler out there so you can try a pump or two for yourself. I dare you to pass it up.
The Farm Stand is also stocked up with our own Goats Milk Soap. Currently I have oat + honey bar and lemon + poppy bar. I just pulled another bar out of the mold today to cure. So more will be available soon (including my favorite, "shea-ve" bar with lavender). You can sample our other skin care products there as well. We make those to order.
Cajeta (caramel sauce) is also available in Traditional and Cinnamon Spiced Rum flavors. Warning: Also addictive.
We should continue to have lemons available, a few grapefruit, and a few more oranges. If you're looking for something that's not there, be sure to let us know -- we'll gladly pick fresh for you. Or you can come pick your own (and we'll distract the goat bucks and hogs from eating your clothes and toes).
See what I did there? I made you read (or at least scroll) through all the new products before I showed you pictures of the goat babies. : ) I know what you're really here for. (Did I mention that I spent my college years working in a theme park? I'm familiar with where the gift shop goes. Wink-wink).
So yes, kidding season is underway!
Remember these babies?
Well they're moms now. And they seem to have replicated themselves two-fold. Wyldstyle lived up to her name, I suppose, and initially rejected her babies, refusing to nurse them, running away from them, and cowering in a corner. I get it. Being a new mother is rough. And there's a good chance she didn't even know she had it coming. I was 45 miles away teaching a night class. Of course. Aaron was home, in the middle of making dinner with a 4-year-old in tow, yet he somehow managed to get the babies warm, and he fed them some colostrum. I rushed home and gave Wyldstyle a good pep talk, and soon enough her instincts started to kick in. She's been a great mama ever since. Lucy is a natural little nurturer, and it just makes me so darn proud (blink blink, sniff sniff).
So because the dragon-slayer (my 4-year-old son) has become an overnight Star Wars fanatic, and because we've already established a pattern of naming animals after beloved movie and TV characters, we've decided to call them Luke, Leia, Vader, and BB8. I'll get some better pics up on Instagram and Facebook soon (psst psst, you should follow us).
This is such an exciting kidding season for me because these are the first goats we've bred right here from our own herd. Applejack is the dad! Remember him? He's Jarwin's mini-Nubian buckling from last year. A mini-Nubian is a Nigerian Dwarf mixed with a full Nubian. They are a smaller version of a Nubian but still produce a lot of reeeally creamy milk (perfect for reeeally good cheese). Applejack comes from a different genetic line than our full Nubians, so he was a good fit for producing a mini-Nubian line of our own this year (don't worry, no inbreeding here folks). Plus, his coloring is gorgeous, and he has a nice demeanor. And those blue eyes...
But you never know with a buckling. When it's their first year "in rut," they can sometimes have a difficult time figuring out exactly what they're supposed to do with all that... "energy." Especially when the girls he's meeting are nearly twice his size. But he got the job done and has remained a gentleman throughout the ordeal. He's turned out to be a great buck.
I'm excited about our next generation of mini-Nubians. They have all the Nubian features (long legs, long ears), but in a smaller package. Just what you want.
And remember this mama?
That's 'Nilla. She's my favorite. She's Lucy and Wyldstyle's mom. And now she's a grandma too. Which makes my heart damn near want to explode. She's also about to kid again herself, and she was also bred to Applejack. So that makes for some kind of weird "your-half-sister-is-your-great-aunt-and-also-younger-than-you" situation for Lucy and Wyldstyle's kids.
Also, she's huge. -->
We'll be breeding Applejack to Nia and her kids, Amelia and Atlas, when they're ready, and then we'll be looking for a new home for him and his buddy Samuel L. Jackson. It's going to be hard to see them go, but his job will be done here. And it's a big ocean out there, and there are many fish.
Or female goats.
Whatever. What a life. Who am I to hold him back?
Our Kune Kunes are doing great. We've been lucky to connect with some local farm supporters who donate fresh veggies and organic produce to feed them (You know who you are! And you know you're amazing!). We also keep the piggies happy with grass, our own milk or kefir, dropped fruit from the orchard, and a base ration of organic corn-/soy-free feed from American Farm & Larder.
We have four meat pigs that we will begin processing in probably the next six months at most, and we have a breeding pair that will be ready to breed in a few months and should farrow (have babies) within the year. If you can't tell, we opt for the slow-grow process. We've had lots of inquiries about our "Orchard Pork," and I promise I will get some info up on the site soon. Trust me, this will all be worth the weight. I mean "wait." It's bacon you can feel good about, remember? (wink wink).
Whew! You still reading?! That seems like a lot to throw at you at once. I'm loving the direction the farm is going and the rate that we're growing. We want you to be a part of it. Stay tuned, and I'll update you with more information about the Goats Milk 101 classes we'll be offering this Spring (the first one will be in April!) and some more details about the pigs.
We're also still looking to get that garden going. One day I'll find a way to carve out the time and get it started. I'd still love to find someone who wants to partner with me on this! For now, I'm reading "The Market Gardener" by Jean-Martin Fortier and enjoying the day dream.
*Note: We don't get anything for linking to other sites from our blog, we just like to be helpful that way. It's nice to point people in a good direction, and in turn, bring some attention to others we admire.