April was a blur! We went from Sheep to Shawl to the Statham Homestead Trail with little time to do much else. Many of you came out to support us on this new adventure. For those that couldn't come out that weekend, I thought I'd share a little about the event and how it turned out.
The idea was from the brilliant mind of Cyndi Ball from Lazy B Farm. We met last fall with several other farms in the area to discuss the possibility of having our farms open to the public. Over half the farmers were fairly new (less than four years) to farming, all women and active in Ladies Homestead Gathering. After lots of ideas were thrown around, we set a date and some guidelines and all got to work.
Our farm being one of the newest kids on the block, we had a ton to do. We just put in our hoop house but had no raised beds planted. We got to work on that immediately. We also had other projects to complete before the big weekend. We had to get a picnic area cleared, parking places marked, and some sort of restroom facility to a piece of property with no water connection. That's when the idea of an outhouse workshop emerged. You can learn more here.
We also wanted to have all of our summer crops in the ground. Mother Nature had other ideas with lows in the thirties three days that week. Sometimes, you just have to go with what you got.
As April approached, we were busy making soaps, deodorants, and other goodies to sell at our farm stand. We painted signs to highlight different offerings on the farm and moved mountains of mulch. Fresh mulch makes everything look better.
The sun rose on Saturday and brought with it glorious spring weather. We had a charcoal demo led by Vasek first thing to warm everyone up. I led a farm tour after that. We brought out our four baby goats...the highlight of the day! They let everyone hold them and made for great photo ops. Another farm tour and rabbit care demo led by Lydie rounded out the afternoon. My dear friend Trish Johnson brought her girls and her fancy camera and got some great shots of the farm. Those are the ones you're seeing in this post but there are tons more we will use in the future.
We were overwhelmed by the turn out. So many of friends and family came to see us. We met a ton of new friends and heard all about how others were looking for sustainable options for local food. And despite a slight sunburn, the day was an amazing success.
I wish I could say that Sunday was equally brilliant but it just wasn't. The mist started mid-morning which turned into a downpour by lunch. Even with the rain, we had about forty people come to see us and take tours that were mostly under the cover of the hoop house.
Overall, the weekend far exceeded our expectations. We are already planning the November Statham Homestead Trail where we hope to offer local artisan crafts and your gathering foods just in time for the holidays. Mark your calendars now so you don't miss out!
Vasek and Brooke
We are thrilled to share our homesteading successes and struggles with you. There's a steep learning curve here and we are ready for the challenges.