Growing Now! November 2023

Hello farm family. Here we are at November and we’re wondering how that’s even possible. So much has happened this year in what seems to be a very small amount of time and now that we’re heading into Winter the year will be over before we know it.

So let’s get started. This month is a very sad one for us because it’s the anniversary of losing our oldest son, Jonathan. As I think about him, I really miss hearing him say “Hey Mom.” That’s how he would always greet me. On the phone, in person, over video chat. I just keep hearing his voice in my head and it’s hard to believe that it’s been a whole year since I haven’t.

To share something personal, I read his obituary the other day. I remember writing the words, but I haven’t read it since. So when I did of course it brought many tears, but it also made me thankful that I got to be his Mom. He was extremely loving, giving, and kind. Plus his smile just lit up the whole world. Now of course as his Mom, that’s my biased opinion, but if you knew him, then you also understand. We’ve took some time off to grieve, but it’s still very difficult. Please pray for us as we all try our best to navigate through it.

Looking back, 2022 started off hard beginning with my Mom having a stroke. Then Hazel Rae’s parents got COVID and we became full time Grandparents for 2 weeks. Sadly, it ended with us losing our son so we’re thankful that, that year came and went.

That was the beginning of FAMILY NEWS, but it’s not all bad. We also purchased our house last year so although there were a lot of downs, there was good as well.

Many of you have heard me talk about our youngest, Joshua. He’s quiet and shy until he gets to know you, but if you saw him in the kitchen you would think he is anything but. Joshua really has found his calling. It used to be all about how spicy he could make well…everything, but really almost since we’ve been in this house he’s been baking from scratch. It started with him wanting something sweet and since we hardly ever have any junk food in the house, he began to experiment with baking.

If you follow us on Facebook, you know that we recently introduced you his personal line:

The Sweet Spot, Cookies by Josh

He has really found a way to make a chocolate chip cookie into something delightful so we named his first cookie just that:

Chocolate Chip Delight

A few weeks ago, he made a batch as samples. This was our market research. Then we sent cookies out to our Kith & Kin CSA members. On both occasions, the feedback was AWESOME! So we knew it was time to get these cookies up on our site. Get ready to be delighted with your own batch by purchasing here. Each order contains six large cookies for you to savor.

It’s really beautiful to see him doing something he enjoys. I should have taken a picture of how much he was grinning at all the great comments about his cookies, but definitely next time.

In CHICKEN NEWS, our Meatbirds are SOLD OUT for our January harvest! THANK YOU!

We didn’t expect such an overwhelming response to these birds, but we are super grateful for it. As we get closer to January we will announce the harvest dates.

Our layers are doing well adjusting to the lower light. We’re getting less eggs, but that’s to be expected.

In PIG NEWS, the other day our youngest hog, Fatback found his way outside of the enclosure. Brandon was at work and Joshua and I had to think fast to capture him. Thankfully, we got him back rather quickly by luring him in to one of our kennels, but once we tried to move him we realized that was a no! I’m not sure how much Fatback weighs, but I do know that it’s more than Joshua and I were able to safely lift. He is one that we’re keeping, but as you guys know we don’t keep farm animals as pets. Everything and everyone is used as production so Fatback is our breeding boar, while many of the others will be food.

I know that people find it weird that we name our animals and then take them to processor, but we’re totally ok with that! We’re looking forward to fattening them up over these next few months. Then in a January, we eat! Don’t forget to order your own pastured pork here.

In GARDEN NEWS, we’re going into Week 7 with Kith & Kin CSA and the garden was beautiful up until the big frost. We’re ok with that because its November afterall, but let’s take a look at what the farm has been producing this Fall.

Pests in the Fall for us include the flea beetle and worms. We’ve been dealing with both since about mid October and within the last two weeks the flea beetles put the pressure on us. Most times these beetles hide at the base of the plant of between the stems. You can also find them on the underside of the leaves. Since they hide so well, this makes the wash and pack a long process for us, but we’d rather fight bugs then wash off chemicals. So we’re extremely proud to be chemical free since day one and counting!

Kith & Kin CSA just announced its Spring season. We always give first dibs to our members and then it’s everyone else. Our produce delivery will be turning FIVE in the Spring and like WOW! It’s crazy to think that an idea born in my head and then shared with friends has grown so much. I’m truly grateful for so many families who have trusted us to feed them! We would love to feed your family as well. Sign ups are happening now. You can find the options here.

Growing Now on the farm are all things Fall with a little bit of Summer left over. The star of both the Summer and Fall for us has definitely been eggplants. We’ve literally grown hundreds of them!

They will soon be pulled along with the Summer Squash plants shown in the photo. This will leave us with mustards, kale, Choi, and a few other greens, but soon we will be putting most of the farm to sleep for Winter. We will keep a small amount of crops for our family and some Seasonal Farm Boxes that we will post soon, but our efforts will be concentrated towards our animals and planning for the new year.

As always we thank you for being the best part of Hawkins Homestead Farm. Without you, there’s no us. Let’s chat again soon. Until then…….

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