Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Tough Week

Wow, sometimes life is challenging.  I could use this blog to only share the "good stuff" of happy memories, dreams and successes. But, as you know, that is not real life. Real life is made of challenges, failures, heartache, all the stuff that makes the good times even better.

This last week has been such a week of disappointments and challenges.

In the background of severe supplier issues on some items, the hectic fall "harvest" as the weather changes, the usual "dad, this isn't working", the lack of cash flow when you need it,  behind all of that is the closing windows of opportunity. In farming, the weather is king. Farmers can not change weather, much as we want. It is what it is. We cant control it, we can only accommodate it. And sometimes, like this week, that doesn't work out.

I am referring to the windows here in Oregon of September planting for a fall/winter garden. Basically, if we do not have seed in the ground, sprouted by the first cold rain, it is pointless. There will not be enough heat left to grow anything before winter. So mid-September is the crunch time.  And this year, we missed it.

First there was just so much going on, that could not be put off. That pushed us into the very last minute for planting.  But then, when we were racing to get the ground prepared and seeds in... problems arose. I did manage to get the old goat pen tilled, but on the last pass of that area, the tiller "hung". The tines literally stopped and the tiller jumped behind the tractor. Not a good sign. After that, it would work, but only so long as the tines were no more than half an inch deep into the soil.

Racing the sundown of the last day, I thought, "ok, I an use the hand tiller to finish the rest of the areas".  More work... but doable!

Well... so I thought.  It refused to run. Apparently the gas gummed the carb as it sat and it would start up, but then die from lack of gas flow. I began working on it... to see it it would easily fix. But as you may know.. a carb cleaning job without dismantling can require lots of starting, and starting requires lots of pulling on the rope. Pulling on the rope... works well until the rope BREAKS!

Ok, so plan B (with a very tired arm)

Back to the big tiller. I assumed there was a problem in the gear box, so I removed the gearbox cover and drained all the oil. Peeking around, couldn't find anything wrong! Everything seemed perfect! So.. ok.. put that all together and refill with fresh oil. Head out to the garden again.

Same problem, put the tines in the soil and they just stop.

Closer inspection from underneath found something interesting! a half inch pip had somehow become wrapped around the tiller tine shaft. Ok, conceivable that could stop the tines under certain conditions and make the clutch slip. SO half an hour later it was removed.

Head back to the garden....  no difference.

Frustrated, I pulled up the parts diagram for this particular tiller model and found that the gear drive has a key between the gear and the shaft. That key being bad would be the explanation for the failure. The pipe must have taken out the key.

So  no tiller, no garden, no winter feed.

Frustrating week.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Lamb is Back In Stock! --- Order now for immediate delivery!

Yes! After a long wait... we finally have lamb products back in stock! And some exciting ones at that!

This year we have:

Ground lamb in 1 lb packages
Mildly spicy breakfast links
Mint Cranberry Dinner Links! WOOHOO!

The mint cranberry is our favorite! After much testing and adjusting, we developed this recipe our-self, in our kitchen. It is quite honestly an exquisite blend of tart, sweet, and minty.  You have GOT to try this one!

And the best news?  All of this lamb is, as always, super nutritious.

Pasture Raised year round on organically grown grass
Heritage Breed
Free of antibiotics, hormones, chemical parasite control, and vaccinations
Humanely treated with love
Naturally bred in communities as in nature

The jacob sheep that we raise is (in our humble yet passionate opinion) the best lamb anywhere. It is milder, yet more flavorful than any other breed we have tried. Often people do not even know that this is lamb! It taste quite similar to grass fed beef.

If you are looking for an alternative to beef that is just as tasty, yet perhaps more nutrient dense, this is it! But hurry, we often sell out quickly and it only becomes available once a year!