November has crept up quickly and Ken celebrated his birthday on the third of this month by kayaking on the Missouri river. Cold weather and the wintertime are tough on all the animals and the land, so we are glad to have some warm days mixed into the cool. At the farm, we keep the morale high by adding interest to daily life.
Jenn and Peter have been practicing their guitars hard with old-time folk songs along with Pete’s choices of some They Might Be Giants. By having so much to play, their wonderful and much appreciated music instructor, Jane Accurso, from the local bluegrass band, Ironweed (http://www.ironweedbluegrassband.com/meet-the-bands-scroll-down-to-meet-swampweed/) suggested a warm-up of a flat-picking style song, called Devil’s Dream. Please, open the following link to have a listen to their beautiful challenge: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7bXbImuAFQ&feature=related
Susan, a friend of the family and great helper on the farm, was spotted taking photos of the Royal Palm turkeys. The male birds’ faces have changed to a Cyan blue color, and when their feathers are spread, they give quite a show. Two of the toms were butchered at the farm for the Thanksgiving holiday. Guy, a long-term employee of the farm, butchered one of the goats raised for meat right here, too. We value eating meat that was raised on grass. The taste is more satisfying and dignified by having a hand through its entire life.
Goatsbeard was honored to receive excellent news of being a finalist for the Good Food Awards in two categories of cheese. Fresh Plain Rounds and the aged Pitzicato are now in the running for the grand prize that will be announced in January. The Good Food awards are given based upon tasty, quality food made by using an environmentally sustainable and ethical production.
Look for a few new wintery recipes on our Recipes page coming soon. We wish everyone had a happy holiday season and are looking forward to the upcoming holiday. Stay warm and dry, until next time!
Dear Goatsbeard Fans,
The more time that passes, the more news stacks up. Life doesn’t stop, even if you do. So, around here, we do our best just to keep up with the goats!Many things have happened throughout this past year.
The weather change from summer to fall in mid-Missouri is now remarkably apparent. Just in the past few weeks, the average temperature has dropped anywhere from 30-40’ F, bringing about many seasonal changes around the farm.
This temperature change has been quite a relief for everyone. The goats are much happier to get out of the barn to graze without the sun beating down.
We just completed permanent fencing in another area of the pastures for the herd to graze. There are many wildflowers blooming and seeding, species varying between the slight ecosystem changes within each paddock. The colors of the surroundings also reveals the time of year. Breeding season has arrived, so a La Mancha buck is visiting with the herd for this week. It was made obvious that the season was getting closer as the milk volume was less in the bulk tank, though it was producing a higher cheese yield.
Vella, the new young Jersey cow, is establishing her place within the herd as she grows older. In the near future, we will need to make some equipment preparations for milking her. Tending a cow is a completely new experience at the farm, so we’ve been learning a lot about animal behavior.
Cyrus’s third birthday just flew by earlier in September. He is walking and talking like a serious person, as some of the employees have put forth effort in expanding his vocabulary.
Peter is now in the fourth grade and happy to be back in school. Although he had some exciting events throughout the summer- rocket camp, creek walks, and the reformation of the Stream Team with some friends. Ken is now the Den leader in Pete’s Cub Scout group troop and has had fun events to attend like visiting a corn maze as a Pack and playing Dads versus Sons in a game of baseball. Jenn and Peter just began taking guitar lessons together. Both are making progress and appreciating the company of playing along with each other.
Along with Vella, there have been some additions to the farm, including five turkeys, two pigs that have grown so quickly, two kittens, and an intern. The family continues to grow! There are many future plans for the farm. So, keep up with us and check back again soon!
Jenn and Ken Muno