Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Three Months + Changes

Yet again....a lag in blogging.  At this point I guess I am good for an update every three months.  Another year has come to a close.  Hard to believe 2015 went by so quick and we are already a few months into a new year.  On the home front.  We seem to be fully adjusted to three little girls!  New schedules busier every day, more homework, new activities, and our ever adorable growing baby who this week will be five months.   We are enjoying every moment of our growing girls and growing business.  Joe and I have learned that date days now include a drive to Stockton (not our first choice) but our away time is cherished.  I have learned we compromise well I ride along for his business trips and he has to make a few pit stops on our dive home (shopping included).  After 10 years of marriage and three kids you learn to take any quiet time that you get! It works.
The farm...where to start with an update after three months.   I have always been and honest blogger, and after a few hectic months of daily stresses, business changes, tears, overload of lambs, extra loads of laundry from mud on the farm, days where we wonder is this all worth it?  Can we do this with three kids on our own?  After ever changing day to day challenges on a farm.  We are so lucky to live the life we have happy, healthy and so grateful, but it is challenging.  It is hard. I had my first time in five years where I told Joe it would be so much easier to work for someone else. Go to work and come home.  A bit disappointed in myself, I woke up motivated...very motivated. We have learned to embrace the changes and embrace hectic and crazy.  We have had a crazy few months....with crazy I mean we had 700+ ewes lamb out in a month and a half.  CRAZY!  This is our first year we really tried to time our sheep lambing by groups to try to make the lambing process more efficient. Well efficient it was but short handed we were.  Thank goodness for great family and friends again who always seem to chip in at the drop of a hat when needed! You do know we have to catch all those sheep and lambs from our ever beautiful hills (not an easy task at all) and tag every single one. Green grass....rain has arrived and we are over the moon to have some green grass around the farm and some extra happy sheep!  The creamery is extra busy.  Our product line is soon expanding, and we welcomed our new creamery employee.  Welcome Kelly Moore!   She will be joining us in the creamery + with product sales.  We are so excited to welcome her to the team and excited for what is ahead in 2016. So a gazillion new lambs, our growing family, our growing staff and farm. So stay tuned for whats to come.....in three months!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Falling For Fall

Hello November.  Hello Fall!  Our favorite time of year.  Lack of blogging again, seems to be a hard task to find a few quiet minutes lately.  So a quick catch up is overdue.  Our family has grown.  Our adorable heart melting Leary Gray was born on August 2nd.  We were thrilled to welcome her into the world, and I was thrilled to no longer be pregnant.  Joe and I also celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary, where you ask?  In the hospital. Our 10 year anniversary happened to be the day after Leary was born, so we celebrated with hospital room service and an our growing family.  The girls are over the moon excited and think that having a new baby sister is like a real life baby doll.  Joe is beaming ear to ear and still trying to grasp the fact that is life is filled with bows and ponytails!  Avery and Hadley are ever growing and to sum it up days are filled with school, HOMEWORK, pony lessons, 4-h and lots more.  Oh 4-h. Yes my kids have joined, and yes I have accepted it, and yes they love it and yes I have finally learned it is a great thing.  I have been busy very busy.  Learning to adjust to new schedules, less sleep and all things three girls. 
On the farm front we are lambing.  We are always lambing but we don't really consider our off season. Our busy season is in full swing and there are lambs everywhere.  Farm projects continue, new fencing that was desperately needed is in place (thank you to those who have stopped to let us know our sheep are on the road, you will no longer have a morning or evening commuting delay).  We are still waiting patiently for our rain.....WAITING.  Nothing like seeing your animals graze the dirt.  Green grass can 't come soon enough.  The creamery is growing and so is our product line.  Jen has been working hard every week in the creamery and on making our lives and processes more efficient.  We are ever so grateful for her and her hard work, and her dealing with our occasional family farm marital spats.  They still happen, and yes, Joe seasonal farm decor is necessary. Joe and I also have attended our first few farmers markets.  We are attending the CUESA pop up markets at the yard in San Francisco mission bay neighborhood.  A fun day getting to see some of our great customers.  We are excited for fall on the farm, green grass to grow and lots more to come. Stay Tuned.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Three Months Here and Gone!

Well a quiet afternoon and a few minutes to catch all our fans and followers up on our home and farm life. Huge delay in blogging due to the fact that life has gotten a bit crazy.  A quick update on the family. Summer has come and gone also.  Growing kids, swim lessons, summer fun, summer trips and me will a summer with a growing belly.  Down to the final few weeks and I can't wait to not have a pregnancy waddle.  I have to admit I have slowed down and catching lambs or loose sheep on the farm has become quite a funny task to watch.  Joe even threatened to post a video of me out doing things 9 month pregnant ladies should not do! So I decided it wasn't worth the risk of a video of me being posted on social media.  Girls head back to school next week and we will officially have a kindergartner and an 8 year old third grader, and in a few weeks a new little lady to be added to our family.
On the farm it has been a whirlwind a good whirlwind but a summer so busy we haven't seemed to catch our breath yet. Jen Stoker our new plant manager has arrived and been a lifesaver and now settling into her new lifestyle change.  She has spent the past 8 years working for the largest cheese company in the central valley. We are so thankful for her expertise, knowledge and passion.  We are thrilled we fit into her lifestyle change and excited for all the opportunities we have ahead and glad she has decided on Sonoma County.  Did I mention lifesaver.....we seemed to have been a bit overwhelmed. We had exhausted all our family and friends help with our growth and her arrival couldn't have been better timing!  Joe busier that ever and now getting good at making lists.  We are growing rapidly, lambing often, and working harder than ever.  He had a great trip back east this summer visiting the largest sheep dairy on the east coast.  A trip filled with green grass, sheep, and lots of new knowledge keeps us excited about the growing sheep industry on both coasts. The creamery in full swing still producing our handmade sheep products.  BIG NEWS..... we won a 2015  american cheese society award for our crafted sheep butter.  We were unable to attend and to be honest we love our product and know others do, but being so new and only on the shelf 10 months we thought it was a long shot.  {So there we sat on the side of the road fingers crossed we would maybe place.  Trying to get reception for the live stream awards thinking not a chance...there are some major players entered.  No reception as our category arrives. So on with our day, with the unknown}  Well low and behold we won first place!  We still are so humbled and appreciative of our award and makes all we do and all the hard work, long days and occasional farmer tears worth it.  More big news.....we are a 2015 food finalist for Martha Stewart American Made audience choice awards.  Public voting opens in September so don't forget to check out our profile and vote vote vote.   We are so excited to be a finalist.  So our past three months in a major nutshell. Hard Work a few dreams and visions and here we are.  We couldn't be more excited about what is to come and can't wait to share!  Stay tuned.