summer greens at Mountain Glen Farm

summer greens at Mountain Glen Farm

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Becky Is At It Again...

...buying pigs, that is.


This week she purchased nine feeder pigs from a new friend and pig aficionado located in the adjacent county to the north.  Matt is a good ‘pig’ confidant.


Becky committed to selling at the Staunton, Virginia Farmers Market this upcoming season.  She has her beef and lamb to sell, and she wanted to sell her own pork.  Unfortunately, her first litter of piglets (still unborn) will not be ready for marketing.


So, she opted, this first selling season to buy some feeder pigs from a trustworthy and local producer, and finish them, fatten them, in order to be able to provide pork as her third meat offering.


All meat sold will have to be processed at a USDA-inspected facility.  Becky has her appointments made.  Folks…this is one reason farmers market prices are high - USDA inspected is an added and somewhat unnecessary cost for the small producer.  But, it is the law.


Becky is a committed farmer who wants to provide natural, local and exceptional quality meat to her neighbors.


She is on the right path to success.

Hmmm...which ones do I want?

pigs coming out from the scales one by one

We all went to view her pig purchase possibilities.  Once chosen, they were weighted, paid for, loaded onto the stock trailer and driven back to her farm for unloading.

nine pigs waiting to unload at Becky's farm

By this time, late afternoon turned into evening and the unloading took place after dark.


barn lights - notice the lone pig in the barn lot pen
After a few seconds of roaming around to familiarize themselves with their new facility, those pigs found their feeder and enjoyed a snack.

some of the newest arrivals - Home Sweet Home!


The next morning, Becky found her new nine pigs spread out all over her barn lot.  A few had managed to get into the pen with the boar and two breeding gilts.  A few had managed to get into the pen with her younger gilts.  Those nine were definitely not shy and made a point to announce to the rest of the resident pigs that they had arrived.


Becky…she spent her, up-to-now, well-planned morning separating and dividing pigs - OINK!


Friday, February 14, 2014

Another Baby?

Becky decided she needed a farm dog of her very own.  Having recently lost Jake, and Buddy becoming more my dog than hers, she took the next step and bought herself an Australian Shepherd puppy.


This puppy lived about a two hour drive from our home.  So, of course, we would stop for lunch prior to pick-up so that we would not need to make a meal break with a brand new puppy in tow.


We decided on a local, in vicinity of the puppy’s home, café named Buffalo and More.  The establishment was small and cozy, but the food was big on flavor. The menu was extensive and used buffalo meat in almost every item…hot dogs, burgers, chili, tacos, stew and more.  Initially, I ordered a bowl of buffalo chili which was a bit too spicy for my sensitive palette.  From the first spoonful, I could tell the chili was delicious, but the burn began to settle in immediately. I decided to reorder a much milder buffalo pot roast - yummy!  Becky got her usual, or just a bit unusual, buffalo burger and sweet potato fries.  We had plenty of food to overfill our stomachs (no dessert, again - that homemade blackberry cobbler with a scoop of vanilla ice cream was tempting) and to take some home.  The staff was extremely friendly and accommodating.  If we are ever in Riner, Virginia again, we will be sure to revisit Buffalo and More for another satisfying buffalo entre.  Did I mention that the buffalo is locally raised, too?


Back to puppy pick-up…

Puppy taking his last look of his birth place.
Puppy looking at me and wondering...'Who are you?'

Only minutes from the café, we were at the home of the puppy people.  After a few words of encouragement between the owner and Becky, I sat back in the vehicle, placed a cardboard box on my lap and was ready to receive the cute ball of fluff.  The first part of the drive back was quite curvy.  Since I am prone to motion sickness, my stomach was feeling a bit queasy.  Then, puppy threw up…in the box thank goodness, but in the box on my lap nonetheless.  The odor did not help my condition.  As soon as Becky could find a place to pull over, she did and quickly cleaned out the box and off we went. 


About 1 ½ hours later, Becky stopped to let the puppy out.  A squat, a tinkle (by the puppy) and we were off again. 


Soon, we arrived at the puppy’s temporary home, Mountain Glen Farm, and he met his new dog friend, Buddy.  Buddy was a bit standoffish, but a gentleman - no nipping or barking. 


The past week has proved challenging.  The puppy, officially named Samuel/Sam/Sammy, has had the run of MY house - ugh!  He abandons his toys wherever, chews on the carpet fringe, and leaves small surprises from time to time - double ugh!!


Sammy is cute, I know the situation is temporary, and I do miss him when he accompanies Becky on her chores. 


What more can I say?


So, here’s Sammy…our (really Becky's) newest cutie!



Saturday, February 1, 2014

We're Free

Since the temperatures have warmed into the 50’s, the early lambs, the winter lambs, finally had their opportunity to leave their protected quarters of the barn to run, rest and explore in the nearby pasture. The warm sun and winter grass made a desirable playground for the youngsters.



But, this reprieve will not last long as the imminent weather forecast is rain, snow and freezing rain.


Well…it is winter!