Saturday, February 25, 2012

I like farmers and country folk.....

Today I had a very nice visit from some newer neighbors.  Remember this is "the country" and those that live 15-20 miles away are still considered neighbors!  Well, we had butchered our York/Old Spot cross gilt a few days ago and were just finishing up the processing of it today.  Good old country folk and farmers don't even miss a beat when they see an entire hairy pig hide with the head still connected laying on the ground.  Like I said, I love country folk.   (By the way if you are reading this blog - I'm very happy to have met all of you.)

Well, except for the truly unusable parts, Miss Roto is snugly tucked away in either the freezer or a brine bucket.  We  had some wonderfully delicious pork loins for dinner.  The cost of our own homegrown pork really was a great deal.  I can't believe such clean healthy meat cost us so little.  We didn't include our labor, but did include all actual expenses including seasonings, brine ingredients and packaging supplies.  Our total cost came out to be $1.10 per pound on average.  It might be a little more than you could find some cuts on sale for.  But I've never found ribs, loins, bacon or sausage for anywhere NEAR $1.10 per pound.  She was my first experience butchering an animal.  I was afraid it may bother me some.  Surprisingly it didn't bother me a bit.  I even had the stomach if you will, to inspect all the vitals to make sure they looked healthy and clean.   They certainly got the all clear. 

We have made the decision that if Lily gives us any bucklings in April, we will be keeping one for our freezer.  We love the goat meat and are very happy to be filling our freezer with healthy and all natural meats.

We have also been feeding the offal to our livestock guardian dogs.  Oddly enough, the house dogs haven't been as thrilled as one would think a dog would be when offered raw meats.  The Pyrenees aren't arguing a bit.  I really like the idea of moving to a raw diet for our dogs and cats alike.  However we most likely will not have enough to support a fully raw diet.  I'm glad we are able to at least offer a good amount to the Pyrs that are working so hard outside in this yucky winter weather.  They have relished the kidneys, lungs, esophagus, scrap cuts and spine so far.  I am not going to feed them anything with hair attached at this time, this however is just a personal choice.  All the barn and house cats have received a tummy full of porky goodness.  Carol, one of the barn cats, is extremely fond of me supplementing her already "mostly raw" diet she provides herself.  Bob, the other barn cat, is still more of a kibble kitty.  I will be posting more as I continue researching and experimenting some with a raw (or at least a supplemental raw) diet for the dogs. 

I am very excited to announce an yet another addition to our farm who will arrive this fall.  Thank you to Sandy Pines Farm, in Holton, MI (and Country View Goats in New Era, MI ) Country View Titan will be our new FB ABGA buck.  He will be breeding the goats at Sandy Pines Farm first before moving to our farm.  He will be our main sire this fall. 

On an different note:  I officially start my new job tomorrow:  Tractor Supply Company.  Can you imagine?  I'll most likely never see a full paycheck once I spend it all in-store.  I am happy that it will only be part-time (about 3 days a week).  This will leave my schedule pretty open for farming duties such as birthing, haying and butchering.  Greg has also offered his more than capable assistance when my schedule doesn't allow me to be on hand for important farm related issues. 

Well thank you for letting me talk your ear off.

Until next time.......

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