The Pioneer chickens have been doing great on the pasture! They are so small, but seem so hardy, and they are loving their new home! We were very pleased with the Red Ranger chickens, but so far, I am a big fan of these Pioneer chickens. It's so cool to see the chicks running around in the chicken tractor pecking away and playing! We strongly believe in raising animals the right way and you can taste the difference! Some have asked when the next round of chickens will be ready...They will be processed and ready around the first week of August. You can place orders now or closer to the date.
What else is new? The cows are getting big and loving all this rain, as it helps keep the pasture lush and healthy. A family friend was over and asked if the old wise tale was true (when cows sit down in one place for an extended time, it is going to rain), but I cannot say yes or no to that... :) It does seem like that at times! It's fun to sit and watch them walk around in the rain and eat away without a care in the world. The other day, the kids and I sat and watched the cows just being cows...a nice gentle breeze was blowing, sky was clear, and everything was perfect! It's the little things in life... :)
Last thing...We've had a few emails asking for advice on chickens, goats, along with a few questions on veggie gardens. We will be putting together a webpage at a later date with ideas/tips/suggestions that we have done around the farm. Trust me, working with animals and plants, one thing that works for someone, might not work for others. I often refer back to "proven" ideas of the past, only to find that a few modifications here and there can make an even greater impact on whatever we are working with. Do what works for you and "borrow" ideas from others! :) Let us know if we can help! -RJ
First off, Delp Family Farm would like to say thank you for supporting us with the purchase of a meat chicken or more, or for just some kind words of encouragement! We got the meat chickens processed last week and got them back this week to sell. The chickens turned out great and we couldn't be more pleased. They are whole chickens this time, frozen, labeled, and ready to go! The 10 week journey to get to that point was a fun experience, along with some good old fashion hard work. But, it's all worth it for our family and for yours too! It's so awesome to sit at the supper table and know where your food comes from. If you haven't ever experienced farm fresh food, I highly recommend it.
On a side note, a fun little story. The day the chickens were processed, we were all up early to round up the chickens and get them ready for transport. My wife had the duty of wrangling all the chickens inside the chicken tractor. I was very impressed with how she could maneuver within the chicken tractor, secure each one safely, and then hand to me to be put into transport cages. Our kids were in charge of entertaining us and the chickens. Eventually they will get the chicken wrangling duties! But- Just stepping back and "looking" at all of this, it makes you think of the old days. Times were simpler, families worked together, and families played together...Some how, some way, maybe we can all get back to that... "We gotta go back"... (Joey and Rory Song) says it all... Thanks for checking in! -RJ
Strawberries = Jam....and more Jam… and even more jam… If you have seen the picture posted on Twitter @delpfamilyfarm, you know what I am talking about…(I'll also post in our garden section) First of all, we were so blessed with the first strawberry harvest of the year. I can’t believe so many strawberries can grow in one place! After a major pick-fest, our kitchen turned into strawberry central. With the help of a family friend, the ladies set out to make as much jam as possible. After 24 jars and hours later, the wrong question was asked (we won’t mention names)… Are you going to make more with all these other strawberries? :) Back to the barn for someone! Still.. It’s so awesome seeing “old-school” canning and traditional methods being used to preserve something for the family that came straight out of the patch. It’s amazing what God can provide and the lessons that can be learned from planting, tending, and harvesting! Maybe that’s an old fashion viewpoint, but it’s one that kids to adults can learn from… Round two will begin in the next few days, but we have had to concentrate on some other adventures...If you have any questions about making strawberry jam, please send us an email or send a tweet and “we” ;) would be happy to share ideas. Thanks for checking in at Delp Family Farm. – RJ firstname.lastname@example.org
Well, the baby chicks arrived the other day and when you think everything is ready to go with baby chicks, you have just fooled yourself. The night before we had to set up the new big brooder area in the barn that we had been talking about. We thought we had a few more days, but we got an email late in the evening that the Pioneer chicks had shipped. So, after some late night work, we were good to go! ;) I picked up the chicks from the Post Office the next day and when we got home the adventure started. Brooder was ready, water, food, everything... Dipped the chicks' beaks in the water and off they went in their brooder. Then... It became a chick party everywhere in the barn stall and out from under the stall into the barn... We used thin spaced heavy gauge hog panels to build the brooder. We even put chicken wire on top and the high sides... The bottom third had even thinner openings, so we didn't put chicken wire there. BIG MISTAKE! The chicks were just small enough, tough enough, and challenged enough to fight through the opening and off they went. Chasing chickens around, trying to put chicken wire around all the low sides, and making sure all were accounted for proved to be a great adventure! In the end, all was well and the baby chicks are doing great! -RJ