Friday, November 21, 2008

What a week

It’s 26 degrees this morning and the milking was a bit on the uncomfortable side for the goats. I was fine, nice and toasty in my Carhart bib overalls and jacket. I’m thinking about getting them the little goat shawls I see advertised in the Hoeggar’s catalogue. The hats are cute too, but that’s more for summer.

What a week! I haven’t had much time to work on the dairy. My brother in-law and my niece from Seattle came to visit for the first time since I moved here in 2003. It was a great visit and I feel so much closer to them than I have in such a long time. This last August my sister passed away from cancer, the doctors never did find the origins but once the tumors appeared in her brain it was only a matter of weeks. They had been married for 37 years and up until the very end they were smooching, their love for each other clearly present. Thinking about it makes my chest and body warm with gratitude that they we able to experience what very few couples allow themselves to. So I think it was good for my bro-in-law and niece to get out of town for a little bit and it was a good and healing time for me too.

My niece is 20. Her existence is via iPod and texting, which I myself have recently learned how to do. So our communication has opened up greatly. For a city girl I was impressed with her endurance, there were many cold days cutting firewood and fixing this or that. She befriended many- a- barn cat and even named the un-named. (Bella and Muffin will be forever grateful and spoiled).

Les and I ran the route 66 marathon, I ran the 5K “fun run” (whatever!) and he the half marathon. He came in second place in his age group! It was a freezing morning, it took my ass four days to thaw out but we had a fantastic time.

All in all they enjoyed the farm and ended up to be a great help, no more barn door hanging off hinges, no more fence gate leaning against the fence and a serious dent was put into the downed limbs left from last year’s ice storm. We made a good bon fire and shared it with neighbors and friends. There was also a little leisure time of horseback riding and one very short nap for all of us.
Next week I am committed to catching up on phone calls to the dept of Ag. But on a very positive note the LLC was formed, business license accepted and we now can pay taxes. Yippee!......?
Looking forward to thanksgiving and sharing it with the many specials souls in my life!

Friday, November 14, 2008

The Rocky Road to Here

Here, that’s where all the roads we travel drop us off at, isn’t it?
The road for me has been a long one. This trip has lasted five years with many random exits and back roads, detours and adventures. But currently I’ve pulled off to the side. Well, let me be more honest. I was pushed off, pulled over and ran out of gas. Not only did this rocky road have the biggest marshmallows in the world but it felt as if they were shoved where the sun don’t shine and set on fire. (yeah ouch!) But when I was finally finished being surprised about it, I exhaled and it felt amazing.

October 2003 I moved from Seattle to a dream which turned out to be a nightmare of sorts with a brilliant silver lining. I left the life I had know as a chef/restaurant owner for a farm and a new life in a rural place far from home on every level imaginable. I moved with a lover who turns out wasn’t the lifelong true love I thought I had but instead was a guide through many painfully enriching journeys. Well, the journey for the two of us came to an end recently and now I find myself the proud and terrified single wife of a Seven acre farm and dairy where I happily coexist with twelve Nubian milk goats, seven St. Croix hair sheep, one Llama, fifty chickens, six or seven cats and four dogs.

As of yet I don’t rant, and run around like a deranged mountain woman, I do talk to myself at times but I’ve heard most people do. Actually I’m quite sophisticated; the flies on the walls are impressed. This minor mishap of finding myself alone on this farm has been more of a blessing than a burden and I am now more than ready for the dream to finally become a reality.
Fortunately for me this rocky road I had been on ended in very safe and beautiful place.

So the past is the past and with one foot in front of the other I embark on a new journey. It’s been my goal since I moved to this farm November 20, 2004 to have a goat milk dairy and make fabulous cheese that I can sell at the farmers market. For one reason or another I was never able to fully make it a “legal” reality, but I’ve gained a new perspective and now the road ahead is wide open. I’m going to have a lot of hoops to jump through and I’ll be doing something In Oklahoma that apparently hasn’t been done before (which in itself is a frightening task to take on) so my intention with this blog is to share my journey with other small dairy folk, farmers, friends of farmers and people who just want good real food, all in hopes of sharing insight as well as receiving it. But, make no mistake about it I am more of a straight chocolate or coffee girl than rocky road, but I gotta try it all.