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Farm to Fork (10-12)

Ok so by this time, I’ve run out of salad. We still have some arugula in the gardens, but that’s it.

If you ask my husband what my favorite food is, he’ll say salad. I love just about all vegetables, but throwing them all together with a bunch of toppings and a good dressing, is the BEST!


Now that you have that clear picture and knowing that we can’t shop, order any salads, or pick one up, I wasn’t in the best mood at times. My body craves greens and so you’ll see how I made due.

DAY TEN

After realizing that I was moody I decided to take matters into my own hands and eat greens for breakfast. By greens I mean whatever I could harvest and thankfully we had some greens leftover from the CSA deliveries earlier in the week that were in the fridge. I was up early chopping greens and enjoyed a bowl full all before going to work at 9am that morning.

Our lunch was Joshua inspired and really good. As a matter of fact, he made it!

We forgot to take a picture of dinner, but what we ate is listed below.

Breakfast: Sautéed greens with feta

Lunch: Homemade french fries and tuna patties

Dinner: Homemade chicken pot pie (not shown)

Snacks: Strawberry Scooter Crunch Bites

DAY ELEVEN

This day was Friday and it was a celery juice and coffee day for me. Brandon had leftovers for breakfast and Joshua ate cereal.

You will see that our dinner was amazing! I was supposed to take a picture of the plate, but that just didn’t happen….

Breakfast: Leftovers or cereal

Lunch: Organic blue corn chips with tuna (I know weird, but it was so good) or ramen

Dinner: Boston butt with green bean sauté

DAY TWELVE

This too was a celery and coffee day for me, but we did have brunch. It was the weekend and I prepped dinner early which was an awesome curried stew.

Brunch: Boston butt burritos with feta and fermented relish that was beautiful and tasty. (not shown)

Dinner: Curried chicken and potato stew

All in all this was a great couple of days. Be sure to keep a watch for the next few.

Farm to Fork (7-9)

Hello again. Thank you for following our Farm to Fork series. Here we’ll talk to you about the next few days and what our meals looked like. Ready? Let’s go!

DAY SEVEN

The next day was Monday and during CSA season, Monday’s are delivery days. I had an alarm set for 6:15 am, but forgetting to charge my phone left me sleep until about 7:30 am.

Of course this caused me to be late, plus with all the weather changes, I was starting to develop a small cold.

I had no time for breakfast and was thankful that by the time I came back home Brandon prepared smoked sausage that we wrapped in a burrito and called it breakfast.

The picture isn’t pretty, but I’m glad I remembered to take one. It was more like brunch though because it was about 11 or so before we ate.

Since we had a late breakfast, some of us skipped lunch and kind of snacked up until dinner.

Here’s what we ate:

Breakfast: Smoked sausage in a spinach burrito

Snacks: Pecans and popcorn….of course Joshua had ramen

Dinner: Beef roast with mushrooms and onions over rice.

DAY EIGHT

Tuesday was a stressful day to say the least. I wasn’t feeling well and didn’t go to work. I needed to rest and just have an easy day. I traded breakfast for celery juice and then coffee later. The guys ate leftovers and cereal.

If we weren’t doing this challenge, today would have been a pizza day for sure. Brandon was looking for comfort food and you know how you’re not feeling well and all you want to do is lay around and eat something good? This was today!

We didn’t eat out, but someone was baking and so we were introduced to Strawberry Scooter Crunch Bites (not shown, but we ate it so I had to list it here)

Breakfast: Leftovers and cereal

Lunch: Pizza burritos (Pay no attention to the fact that it’s half eaten)

Dinner: Spicy chicken and broccoli over rice

DAY NINE

We don’t typically eat sweets for breakfast, but when you wake up to what we did, you just roll with it!

Breakfast: Homemade chocolate chip waffles

Lunch: No lunch for me, but the guys had Ramen or tuna

Dinner: Steak Hoagy Burritos

So we’re still trucking along. Stay tuned for the next few days, coming up soon!

Farm to Fork (4-6)

Catching Up

To continue our series we’ll now fill you in on our next few days of meals. The family and I are enjoying eating this way, but we did have a few days when we were out most of the day and had to remind ourselves that we were eating at home. Don’t worry we stuck to it.

In looking back at pictures, I realized that on day 3 we received a beautiful gift!

We’ve been snacking on it ever since……

Day Four

This day fell on Friday and Fridays are notoriously busy for us around here. Brandon was out making deliveries and running errands when it dawned on him that grabbing something while he was out was off the menu. He did make breakfast before leaving home, but being out for so long threw him off.

Here’s what we ate:

Breakfast: “Fancy“ Coffee (made at home) with tuna and eggs.

Lunch: Oven roasted salmon with spinach, onions, mushroom, and tomatoes or ramen. (Forgot to take the “after” picture because I was so hungry)

Dinner: Blackened cod fish with garlic butter sautéed green beans and potatoes.

Snacks: Organic blue corn chips and Oreos

Day Five

This day was Saturday and it was my turn to be tempted. Up until now, I had barely left the house, but for some reason I wanted to stop and get something while I was out running around before 8am. I guess old habits are hard to break, but I didn’t stop until I was home.

I failed to take a picture of it, but we did also sample some delicious goat cheese that was gifted to us along with the pecans from Day 3.

Brandon also was out for most of the day and I was worried about him! He was out with friends and I guess technically if they got food, but he didn’t pay for it….well nope…..scratch that. Eating at home is just that! Thankfully, he was good too.

Breakfast: Good ole bacon and eggs! I actually had mine with Ezekiel Bread from the freezer.

Lunch: Roasted salmon salad topped with feta.

Dinner: Cheesy ground beef nachos with organic blue corn chips.

Day Six

Sunday is usually the day where we can lay back and chill, but we we are in CSA season, so that was not the case today! Not only did we have to harvest and package but, we also had made plans to make some farm runs, so busy it was! We still managed to eat at home and we’re feeling pretty good about doing so.

Here’s what we ate:

Breakfast: Oatmeal (shown) for me, cereal for Josh, and just coffee for Brandon. My oatmeal is always busy and this was no different. A mixture of organic oats, frozen bananas, pumpkin seeds, pecans (gift from day 3), and cranberries topped with tupelo honey.

Lunch: Beefy taco salad topped with organic blue corn chips and feta of course! This one was already started.

Dinner: Sunday dinner was spaghetti, but we were so tired that no pictures were taken.

So there you have it! We’re still doing well and enjoying all that farm to fork is bringing us. We’ll catch you up on the next 3 days soon.

Farm to Fork Series!

Introduction:

Hello farm family! Thank you for following our farm to fork series. Our family is thrilled to have this opportunity to eat from the farm this month! In making the decision to eat this way we realized that some things would have to be purchased. So as mentioned in our Newsletter, we did have a shopping trip before the month started to ensure we had staples on hand.

Although we grow some staples like onions and potatoes. Those items are seasonal. Then you have items like rice, that we can never grow.

As a small urban farm growing grains is also out of the question and sadly, the one thing we forgot to purchase was bread. Not to worry, though because we do have some bread in the freezer. Although we aren’t sure if it will last the whole month, we will just wait and see. The good news is that I can bake bread and we have plenty of flour.

You will find that there will be some days that will have extra items like snacks. Plus we have a teenager, so he would try to live off cereal and ramen if he could!

Drinks for the month consist of water, coffee, tea, fruit and vegetable juice, nutritional supplements, and Mountain Dew for Brandon.

Some of the biggest blessings we had this year were our animals and a half cow, that was ready right on time. We don’t raise cattle, but we are so happy that we know people who do! All meats are farmed with a few exceptions which will be noted.

This series will document the meals the we had each day. Day one was mentioned in our Newsletter, but it will also be listed below. We’ve been trying to take as many photos as possible, but I have to admit that my name is Rachel and I’m super OCD about the photos so some things you may have to take our word on.

Day One

We were so pumped and hit the ground running on the first day, I have a tendency to overthink and over analyze things, but thankfully Brandon reined me in as I was literally going to plan out every single meal for each of the 31 days of the month. He was like “Rachel, you’re doing too much. We have enough food where we can just decide what we want to eat that day.” He was right!

My “green” personality lives by calendars and schedules, so I needed his “red” to help me out. Of course I still woke up at 5 am and started cooking and meal prepping for the day…..

What we had on day one is below.

Breakfast: Beef bacon and eggs scrambled with green tomatoes, onions, and peppers. (Beef bacon was purchased)

Lunch: Garden salad

Dinner: Baked pork chops, the same garden salad from lunch, along with rosemary and onion rice with broccoli.

Day Two

The second day was Brandon’s day to cook. He and I alternate dinner nights as part of our normal family schedule. When the children were home, they also had one dinner night per week as well. We have always been those parents who believed in teaching them how to be self sufficient and so cooking was a big part of it. Even today, our youngest, Josh will cook sometimes, but he is more of a baker. He sometimes surprises me while I’m working with donuts, cookies, etc, ❤️

Our second day meals are listed below.

Breakfast: Chicken sausage, garden salad, and cereal (not shown)

Lunch: Same as breakfast except no cereal this time.

Dinner: Sirloin and cubed steak topped with onions, peppers, and mushrooms. Served with rosemary onion rice.

Snacks: The guys had Oreos and I had homemade trial mix.

Day Three

This day I had I had an appointment early in the morning and so I wasn’t able to eat breakfast before going out. Thankfully, I had my celery juice and Brandon heated me up dinner from the previous night before I had to rush for work.

Breakfast: Cubed steak with rosemary onion rice or cereal (not shown)

Lunch: Garden Salad with sun-dried tomatoes, cucumbers, mushrooms, and topped with feta cheese or ramen (not shown)

Dinner: Pork ribs with our special barbecue sauce and coleslaw. This was the first time we’ve cooked or eaten pork ribs in 20 plus years! Man these were SO good!

There you have it our first 3 days in the books! Thank you for following our farm to fork series and we’ll see you back here in a few days to see what days 4-6 brought us.

Growing Now! (December 2020)

Yes…..We skipped the month of November and here we are in December with all types of news to talk to you about, but first let’s just say how happy we are that it’s officially December!! 🎉

Now of course that doesn’t mean that come January 1st, this pandemic is over and everything can go back to the way it was before COVID. We won’t all be tearing off our masks and be free to breathe in everyone else’s air around us, but at least this year will be over.

2020 has seen so much sadness. So many insecurities. So much craziness and so much damage that all we could do at times was pray and have faith that better times were ahead.

COVID Precautions

Now that Winter is upon us and it’s not only COVID season, but also flu season, we urge you all to pay attention to what’s happening around you. Wear your masks. Maintain your distance and if you or your loved ones become sick, stay home. Actual lives are at stake and people are losing their spouses, mothers, fathers, children……you get the point.

You guys know how much I love my Dad. I’m always talking about him and how much he does for our farm. Well do you know that when I visit with them, I seldom go in the house and I always keep my mask on. Why? Because it is that serious!

I recently shared a picture of our daughter who’s having a baby and we weren’t wearing masks for the picture only! As soon as the pictures were done, the masks were back on. Why? Because it’s that serious!

We have turned down so many invitations and said no to event after event because it’s not worth our family being sick or worse. A bit of struggle never killed anyone, but COVID has killed many. So please take care of yourselves. Use caution for you, your family, and those around you.

Our Experiment

We are planning 2021 to be our biggest year yet! At our new farm location we will soon began building our high tunnel. This is something that we’ve wanted to do for such a long time, and now we can see it within our grasp.


We feel strongly that now is the time to grow as much food as possible and to find ways to preserve it. 2020 has taught us that!

In fact since we purchased a half cow, took our pig to the butcher, and harvested both chickens and turkeys, we see that we could actually be our own food supply. So Brandon and I are conducting an experiment for the month of December….

We have decided not go to the grocery store for the entire month! Instead we are planning to eat solely from the farm! Now I’m going to be completely honest and say that we did have a shopping trip before the month started so we could ensure we had some staples that we’d be able to make meals with, but there will be no grocery runs.

I’m writing this in the late hours of December 1st, so technically it’s December 2nd now and we made it through day 1!

This morning I was up a little after 5 am planning the meals for today. I washed and chopped mushrooms and placed them in the freezer.

I also peeled, chopped, and froze bananas to use for smoothies and oatmeal. Tomorrow it will be more of the same because some things just won’t keep for 31 days.

Here is what we ate on day 1:

Breakfast: Beef bacon and scrambled eggs that included onions, green tomatoes, and ancho grande peppers that were harvested before the freeze, then topped with sour cream.
Lunch: Garden salad with beef bacon crumbles, cucumbers, sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, dried cranberries, apple slices, and feta cheese.
Dinner: Baked pork chops covered with green apple slices, rosemary and onion rice with broccoli, and the same salad from lunch with added tomatoes.

Every single meal included something grown on the farm. Brandon said I tried to be fancy with dinner, but I was told that pork and apples pair well together so I tried it.

It will be exciting to see if we can make this happen for us because we would love to try and continue to sustain our family by eating as much as possible from the farm.

Garden News

Yesterday we woke up to 28 degrees and many dead plants. We knew it was coming, but it was still sad to see. There were so many blooms on the eggplants. Even one we saw that had began to grow. The picture below was taken before the freeze.

One good thing is that we waited longer than usual to plant our garlic and then 2 days after we did, BOOM… Winter.

Also in the gardens we have beets, winter carrots, turnips, mustards, and of course collards. Additionally there is salad lettuce, arugula, and more.

By way of flowers, the last ones standing are marigolds. They have turned out to be the surprising winner on our farm this year.

Poultry News

The chickens are still in their Winter molt and although there are a few eggs here and there, what we’re getting can in no way sustain our family or any of yours right now. We will be soon introducing new layers into the flock as we do have quite a few hens that have come to the end of their laying cycle.

We processed most of the turkeys with the exception of 4. Brandon has yet to tell me if we will be keeping those or they will be fattening up for the next big meal in December, but if you’re interested in eating turkey this month, please let us know.

Our meat birds are small and they can’t tolerate the cold, so they are tucked away safely in the brooder pen for now.

Gifts

If you’re shopping this month no matter what the occasion is, we hope you will check out our handmade soaps, body butters, jams, jellies, and other prepared items.

You can order these and more on our shop page.

The next time we write this blog, we will look back on 2020 and then tell it to go kick rocks (preferably while wearing flip flops).

So we will see you soon. Until then……

Growing Now! (October 2020)

It’s officially Fall! The cooler weather has arrived, the bugs are on their way out, and the greens are growing! We are so excited to be past the Summer months and ready for all that this season brings.

September was a whirlwind for us. Hurricane Sally came in with all her rain and flooded a good portion of our farm. Sadly when the water receded so did most of our newly planted crops, so we had to restart and rebuild. Farming has super highs, but at times it can also have super lows. Needless to say this was emotional for us, but we’re doing our best to keep pushing forward. We thank all of you for your kind words, patience, and understanding.

As October rolls in we will see many cold weather veggies come back. We recently dug up a great sweet potato harvest and it’s so nice to see some good news on the farm.

Fall staples like collards and kale we’re re-planted after Sally rolled out. Salad blends will be coming back, as well as spinach, and mustards too.

We will be pulling tomato plants to make room for garlic which will be planted this month. Peppers are hanging around as well as eggplants. Both of which are blossoming out of control right now.

In poultry news, the turkeys are on track for their harvest date in November. With all the rain we had moved them indoors, but now they’re on their way back outside to stay.

With the damages we suffered on the farm, we’re definitely behind with our chicken harvest. We thank you for your patience and will be contacting each family individually to set up delivery.

As the months turn cooler, remember to stay safe. If we’ve learned nothing else from this pandemic, I hope it’s the importance of keeping you and your family healthy. Things can change so quickly!

While we’re on the subject of staying healthy. We have to stress the importance of NOT ordering from us or expecting us to deliver to you if you’re sick, have the flu, showing signs of, or tested positive for Covid-19. Even if you’re asymptomatic and feeling ok, you could pass it to us and we or someone in our family may not be. As a local farm, we want to be here for the community, but we ask that you respect the safety and well-being of our family, as we do the same for you.

If you need us, we’ll be continuing to grow food for our family and yours! Be on the lookout for Seasonal Farm Boxes! They will come back towards the end of October.

Hope to see you back here next month. Until then…….

Growing Now! (September 2020)

We’re one day away from September and this is the month that we welcome Fall. It’s usually around this time that our birds began their molt (explained below), and it also marks the ending of our CSA membership because the Fall Season starts on September 28th.

I know I stand with many others who farm in the Southeast when I say so long to Summer! The summers here, especially the month of August are BRUTAL on farmers! The heat seems unbearable at times. The monsoon like weather makes the weeds become the best “crops” on the farm, and the bugs make you want to scream and pull your hair out! We even got some new bugs this year!

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Japanese Beetles 

The good news is that today is the last day of August! So Congratulations to my fellow farmers! Congratulations to the gardeners! Even congratulations to all of you! Although the Summer isn’t over yet, the worst part of it is! We made it! 🎉

Molt…….

If you’re not familiar with chickens, the term “molt” may be new to you. Allow me to explain…each year the chickens ready themselves for Winter by shedding their old feathers and growing new ones. During this dormant phase, they lay very little to no eggs and it’s our job as farmers to help them by adding more protein to their diet. This is a process that the birds go through naturally. The chickens don’t know that our Winters are mild,  so it’s out with the old and in with the new.

If you’ve been looking for eggs, you may have noticed that we’ve removed them from our shop page. Some hens are still laying, but it’s not enough to sustain the community. We do try take care of our regular customers and our family first. So please understand that eggs are a seasonal item too.

As mentioned above, today is the absolute last day that we will be accepting new members to our Kith & Kin CSA. In the Fall season our members get the best of both worlds because they get a variety of both Summer produce and the first of Fall. Fresh collards, turnips, and sweet potatoes just to name a few.

We invite you to become a member, but if you’re not ready to take the dive just yet you can always take advantage of our Seasonal Farm Boxes.

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These will be available again beginning in October. So stay tuned!

If you reserved chickens, we’re giving them just a few more weeks to fatten up. Harvest date is set for the weekend of September 18th.

In turkey news, they’re growing so nicely! They’re happy and healthy and with just under 3 months go, they’re right on track.

Piggy is absolutely amazing! My Dad came by the other day and his exact words were “that’s going to be some good bacon!” I love that we can give back to him for all that he’s done and continues to do for us everyday. If you’re a Daddy’s girl, I’m sure you’ll understand how much I mean it when I say I have the BEST Daddy ever!

If you’re looking to start your own Fall garden, look no further than Bain Home Gardens! They are at it again with their own seedlings just for you. All Certified Naturally Grown and ready to go to their permanent homes.

This month on the farm everything is in motion! Transplants will go into the ground. Birds will be moved. There will be new plants started and those that have reached their end, pulled. There is SO much to do as we get closer to the start of our CSA. As always it’s exciting and scary at the same time!

If you’re looking for any of our prepared foods, try our Blueberry Island Bliss Jam. It’s brand new this year and from what I hear, it’s a keeper!

Thank you for being with us this month! We appreciate your continued support and look forward to chatting with you again soon. Until then…..

Growing Now! (August 2020)

Hello there! Just dropping by with your monthly update from our farm. Things are a bit crazy around here, but crazy for us usually means busy so we will take it!

Both July and August are full on planting months for us. We keep a farm calendar and a poultry calendar year round to help us plan crops, farm chores, track pests, chart egg patterns, and harvests for both plants and animals.

Around this time of the year it’s a bit tricky because of all the heat so we’re up early and back out late. It’s like full time work with part time hours. Does that really exist? Yes it does and we’ve almost got it down. A typical day on the farm looks like this:

Up early before the heat sets in.

PRAYER!

Coffee and food if we didn’t press snooze too many times.

Head outside.

Seek and destroy any pests.

Prune what needs it.

Weed and fertilize beds according to schedule.

Harvest then irrigate if necessary.

Record, record, record.

Feed and water all animals.

Doesn’t sound too bad right? Well since we can only get maybe half of this list done before it gets hot, we usually go back out in the evening to finish. There are those times when we work in or through the heat, but that’s only when absolutely necessary.

Our priorities are harvesting and watering early along with caring for the animals. On those super hot days, the animals get water throughout the day so even if we finished our list early, someone has to go back out to make sure the animals are hydrated.

A goal of ours is have just about everything on automation during the hotter months if not year round. With the continued support of our community we hope to reach this goal. Farming can be very laborious at times so finding ways to be more efficient helps us to farm smart and continue to love what we do. 

So what’s “growing on” in the month of August? Lots! We’re on our second round of Summer squash, tomatoes, peppers, okra, and more. Plus we’ve planted Winter squash, sweet potatoes, cabbage, just so many things for Fall. We have to feed ourselves, our Kith & Kin CSA members (which is filling up quick…join now) and many of you guys too.

In case you missed it, two GREAT things happened in the month of July! For starters our farm became Certified Naturally Grown (CNG)!!! We could not be more excited about being a part of this beautiful program.

If you’re unfamiliar with CNG and what this certification means the “quick and dirty” version is that we are committed to growing clean food, from true seeds. Food that is clean AND safe! Now you guys know us, and Hawkins Homestead Farm has ALWAYS farmed “clean,” but now we have another certification to back us up. Check out the link here to find out more. Along with Bain Home Gardens, we are proud to be the only two farms certified in our part of Alabama. Our hope is that more farms will join us as well. So if you have a favorite farmer, ask them about their growing practices, and invite them to stand proud as a CNG Farmer.

Ok onto the second GREAT thing. It’s so important to me to continue to grow in my knowledge. Plus I love sharing and teaching others how to grow their own gardens. Naturally this led me seek out others who are like minded and the result was that I joined the Master Gardener program for our state. I’m so happy to tell you guys that I achieved my certification as a Master Gardener for the state of Alabama!! It’s super exciting! The people I have met and the things I have learned already have opened my eyes wide and I look forward to gaining more insight on what works in our state. Of course, I’m no expert by any means, but I am so enjoying learning and I’m happy to help all that I can.

In chicken news, Farmer Brandon says that we’re about a month out from harvesting. Thank you everyone for your orders! We have been bulking up on chickens because well you just never know with how things are going in the world right now. So we have meat for our freezer and we’ve also been supporting and purchasing from other farmers too. We invite you to do the same. Local farmers feed Alabama! We’re here for you.

The turkeys have sprang up so quickly it seems and they have settled into their home nicely. Soon they’ll be old enough to get lots of garden goodies.

Last, but not least Piggy news is that he is truly a pig! He brings us so much laughter and as our farm grows, we are hoping to be able to add pigs as a permanent part of it.

Now I’m not saying that we will be offering pork, because we’re still in the learning phase, but last year I had a visit from a sweet little boy who came over with his boots on and everything and said “real farms have pigs.” He had fun with the chickens, but I think he was a little disappointed. Now that we’ve been raising Piggy I think understand exactly what he meant by that now! Pigs are a truly great animal to have on the farm!

Just like our chickens we want to raise heritage breeds from good stock and our research has shown that they’re not cheap by any means.

Brandon and I don’t eat pork, but we like to look at all meats in the store and if you can get pork chops for $2.00 a pound and there is a profit, that pig could not have had a good diet or a good quality of life. Just some things to think about because if the quality of your food didn’t matter to you, you wouldn’t be here right now.

Someone told me just today that “you get what you pay for” and that is so true. We applaud and support those farmers who are focused on the land and the quality of life their animals have. We know you do too. Thank you!

What you may have noticed about the segment this month is that there are no pictures. Why? Well because everything is in turn over mode and there isn’t that much to see!

Not to worry though, next month there will be pictures and updates galore. Please stay safe. Stay healthy. Follow the state mandated order and wear those masks. I’ll look forward to speaking with you again next month. Until then……

 

 

 

 

 

Growing Now! (July 2020)

It’s Summer!! We made it to our longest season in Alabama and I couldn’t be more excited for all the fresh produce that comes in Summer. My most favorite would have to be basil! Yes. You read that right. Basil is such a versatile herb plus an excellent companion plant. It can be added to tea, lemonade, sweet, and savory dishes. Plus who doesn’t love basil pesto?!? I for one won’t raise my hand because pesto is a favorite around here. We actually had this for dinner last night! If you love pesto too, you can grab yourself a jar or two here. We make a lime version too!

CORN went into the ground super late….not just that, but then we had to transplant it! Yep, we did that….some work was getting done on our property and it was run over, but we couldn’t let it go to waste. Hence the transplanting…….we’ve been babying it in hopes that it would perk up and now it has! 

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Beans are growing in plenty on the farm and more have been started. The new ones will go to our land, but for now we’re enjoying watching these ones grow! This trellis was originally built for peas in the Winter, but these beans have found their way up it all on their own.

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Did you know that both Hawkins Homestead Farm and Kith & Kin CSA are a part of Sweet Grown Alabama? Well you do now! This is a program that links what you’re looking for to a local farmer in your area. We love that this is available in our neck of the woods now!

Our go to green that survives the Summer heat is Asian Spinach. It’s doing very well, but the bugs absolutely love it. Flea beetles and worms are the absolute worse. So we keep it under cover from the time of planting.

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Turkey deposits are NOW live! We know people want turkeys for their big feast, but the way things are going, get 2! We ground ours up each year along with marinating turkey parts for the freezer.

It was just announced that Dothan has made the National list for the top 50 cities with rising COVID-19 cases! This city is SO small, this can only be because people truly believe that the virus is over. It’s NOT! Please, please, take precautions! Brandon and I talk about the number of people who don’t have masks and it amazes me to think how something so simple could protect so many, but people won’t adhere to it. Dothan is number 48!

In addition to turkeys Kith & Kin CSA is now open for Fall membership. Secure your food and support local farmers who are concerned about growing food the way it should be! Now through 7/15 you’ll get a free jam or jelly with every order.

We are planting something almost every single day! Another run on the grocery store could mean disaster for SO many people and we want to be there for the community. Already we’ve seen a rise in prices of everyday items, plus beef is outrageous right now and apparently pork is next. I reached out to Working Cows Dairy to see what cuts of meat they have and we advise you to support them as well. They have ground beef and of course dairy products which can be frozen for later use. Of course we don’t know what will happen, but we all have to eat!

So I’ll close this month with asking everyone to please be safe! We know that some people will get sick, but if you’re able to, stay home! The beach will still be there. The mall isn’t going anywhere, and you don’t need to take your kids out to entertain them.

Wear a mask because you don’t know if you’re asymotomatic and could be carrying the virus. Protect yourself and those you love.

As a suggestion, when you go out for the essentials, grab some board games and a deck of cards. You’ll be surprised how this brings families together and it’s fun too!

I am not a TV watcher, but I do love a good show every now and then. So if you have something that you’re interested in, catch up on it.

Lastly, please don’t forget to get some form of exercise in. You can do this at home. In my neighborhood, I’ve watched this couple walk the length of their driveway for exercise and thought what a cool idea. Gym not needed!

Just throwing some ideas your way.  My offer still stands for seeds for anyone who wants to plant a garden!  We’ll talk again next month. Until then……

 

Growing Now! (June 2020)

Hey guys! How are you? I guess this one could be called the late edition because I promise you that all this chaos in the world has my head spinning! Thank you to Shena at BHG for inquiring about this monthly article. If it had not been for her, I may have never written it! 😞 I am grateful that “everyday is a fresh start.” I surely needed it today! 

So now that we’re into June I hope everyone is holding up well. It’s been a year hasn’t it?? Now the heatwave has begun and will probably be here until at least October. I read an article this week about record breaking temperatures in Siberia of all places! With so much happening it’s hard not to get lost in it all, but I try more and more to increase my prayers for everyone. This brings me peace of mind and allows me to focus on my own circle of crazy here!

With the heat it’s so important to stay hydrated. Not just you, but pets that are outside too. Consider dropping ice cubes in their water bowl. I promise they will thank you for it! Although they’re not pets, each year we do this in our chicken waterers. We’ve even prepared frozen treats for them and enjoyed watching as they pecked away to get to it. This keeps them from being bored and getting dehydrated too!

Coal is an expert at drinking water! He likes to stick almost his whole face in the bowl and then come and slobber all over you. 🤣😂. I guess that’s his way of saying thank you!

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Here on the farm it’s the end of the season for some vegetables. We have said goodbye to beets, turnips, broccoli, and will soon say farewell to most greens too. After all it’s almost officially Summer so we’re happy to see those new veggies grow and thrive in their place.

Piggy is one happy camper! He has so much organic goodies going to him each day. Be sure to check out our social media for updated pictures of him. 

We ate our first ripe tomatoes last week and I’m happy to report that more are ripening as we speak! 

Tomatillos are harvested daily. These are special treats that grow inside a husk. They can be eaten fresh or used to make your favorite salsa. We’re growing a few different varieties here on the farm. Our CSA members get first dibs, but we anticipate there will be more for you as well.

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Spring cabbages have grown so nicely this year and they will be listed on the site soon. If you’re into fermented foods, this is a great way to support local and enjoy something great! The one shown went out to one of our Fullshare CSA members yesterday. 

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Carrots are almost gone too! Spring carrots are the absolute best. We love just how sweet they are. Plus the smell of a fresh carrot is amazing! We use them in so many ways and they freeze well too!

Grab some soon to use now or later. The ones pictured below reminded me of how being quarantined (stuck together) has brought us and many others closer. From this we’ve grown into beautiful families. (We kept these for ourselves)

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Since we won’t be participating in any Farmers Markets this season, the best way to get our products is direct. Our Seasonal Farm Boxes this month will include a variety of Spring and Summer vegetables like the ones listed above and more!

The poultry news is Fantastic! The new flock has started laying! We set up the boxes exactly 10 days before this first egg was laid.  It’s always slow at first, but now that they’ve started it’s full speed ahead! We anticipate there will eggs added back to the site as of next month. For now if you’re in need, please contact us.

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We give our CSA Eggshare members priority. Most of them patiently waited since last year for these eggs! Then we have regular weekly, biweekly, and monthly customers that we are providing for, in addition to our family. Hence the “party” for the new layers. Just think we started with only 6! 

We have a few broody hens again this season and Farmer Brandon is contemplating hatching more. Seems like we hatch a lot of roosters, but I won’t complain. A successful hatch is a good one, no matter what they turn out to be! Plus we were very fortunate to pick up an incubator from Gaucho at their sell out, so we hope to use it well!

In other fantastic poultry news, we announced that we are now offering our chickens in bulk!

Here’s how it works: When you order a minimum 5 birds not only do you get the discounted rate of $5.00 per pound, but you save on the deposit as well at only $10.00 per bird. This is being offered by request to you as an alternative to the grocery store. You can find the listing and all its details here

Turkey orders have been placed and invoices will be sent out at the end of this month for deposits. We always order extras for our family, but found this time that even the breeders we use were almost sold out. So thankful that we decided to look and book a bit earlier this year!

Thank you to everyone that has contacted us to reserve yours. What we have left for Turkey Day orders will go live first week in July until sell out. I will send out announcements on the website, by email, and on social media. Maybe you can still get one!

In past years we have not had any come November. We field a lot of contacts and turn down many, so if fresh, local, organically raised birds are on your menu, please grab one quick! Even if you’re ordering other items, pay for the turkey first!

There’s always more I could say, but I will end this month with an update on SeedFolks Family Farm. They are in the middle of a garden turnover, but should be back with more to offer soon.

We appreciate all of you and hope to see you next month, if not before……Until then!