2022 was a good farm year for us!
- The barn cats have completely settled in and have established routines. They do not mind the snow, they seem to enjoy being out and about in it.
- Max and Copper Sue are growing like weeds and settling down just a tiny bit. Both are up to around 60 pounds but we’ll get exact weights at their next vet visits. Copper will be turning 1 year old in just a couple of weeks! We don’t know her exact birthday, but we know it was somewhere around the beginning of February, so we chose the 1st as her birthday. They are finding their voices (and Max’s is quite deep!) so they can live up to their Barking Dog Organic Farm jobs!
- We added 22 chickens and a few guinea hens to the flock in 2022, so had a good year with eggs. We are getting through the winter and have been able to mostly meet the high demand for eggs. We didn’t have any major predator losses this year, and only lost a bird here and there to unknown predators or illness.
- The Dad worked hard on the vegetable garden and other projects around the farm, and we had a decent year for produce as well. We are hoping for a better year this year, but I think that’s always the case – it can always be better.
My shop did OK this year, though sales were down over the previous year. We had a good Christmas season, though we didn’t meet last year’s numbers. We shall see what 2023 brings, though so far January is not off to a good start! I hope things will turn around soon, but the first two years of the month are expected to be slow.
In spite of Covid trying to get us down (both hubby and I came down with it early in December), I was able to make an overnight trip to Maine with the girls and we had lots of fun. We attended the Christmas Prelude in Kennebunkport, leaving bright and early on a Sunday morning so we could make it for their featured event, the Pooch Parade. It was worth getting up early for! It was amazing how many people joined in with their dogs, these photos are just a very few of the participants!
Christmas day was fun for the animals. The dogs got lots of new toys, and have been having much fun playing with them all (and destroying some). They also enjoyed helping us humans open our gifts! Luke was always like a puppy on Christmas, enjoying all those things too, so while missing him it was nice to see the pups taking after him in that way.
The barn cats got toys as well, and the flocks enjoyed a special meal of fermented feed. We’ve been having a lot of ups and downs weather-wise, and the birds sure don’t mind if we have a mostly mild winter. We could all do without the rain that turns to ice though, which is what we are dealing with right now. We got a good amount of snow to enjoy a white Christmas, but it didn’t last long after that. We do still have some on the ground now. Max and Copper Sue love the snow, so they are voting to get more!
What will the new year bring? One of my sisters is now covering the shop one day per week so I can have some more “free time”. It’s been nice so far, though January is pretty much a month of just trying to catch up on things after a busy December and holidays. If this works out for her, I hope to spend more time training the dogs and getting the gardens ready for spring. It’s time to break out the seed catalogs soon, which is always fun! I am hoping to try some clicker training with the dogs, hoping that they’ll pick it up as fast as Luke did. Luke was so smart, they have a lot to live up to! If they don’t that’s OK too, but both are very treat oriented so I expect it will go well.
As always, we will grow the flock, but we haven’t made definite plans for that yet. I’m sure we’ll try some hatching, but may also purchase some chicks so we have guaranteed eggs for next winter too, or some guinea keets so we can get some different colors (I miss having white ones which we had in our first group). We’d still like to try some other birds as well, most likely turkeys, since the price of them around here was crazy at Thanksgiving! We had to pass on getting a farm fresh turkey because we simply couldn’t afford it.
Oh, one last thing. Recently I showed that we had Copper’s DNA tested (see results here), so we decided to do Max’s too. As it turned out he has a little more than just the expected Labrador retriever and Great Pyrenees that make him a Pyrador!
I don’t make resolutions, I make plans. What are yours for the new year?
Happy New Year!