Monday, May 28, 2007

WIsconsin Family Farm.

This weekend we were able to visit a farm in an absolutely gorgeous area of south central Wisconsin. This farm produces natural pasture raised cattle, hogs, chickens and turkeys, in addition to some produce, eggs and sheep for wool. The owner was a very smart and kind person, who took over 2 hours of his busy day to show us around, talk about his practices (sustainable agriculture, pasture/grass fed animals, natural processes, small farms, etc.) and animals. The rolling open hills on one side were perfect for the happy cows and frolicking pigs. The other side had steep hills which we climbed to visit a mama jersey with her 4 day old calf, and a small herd of highland sheep who ran in pack formation from tree to tree if we so much as LOOKED at them.
A few bucks peered at us and rubbed their curly horns on the gate as we passed.
We also visited a room filled with warming lamps and several areas with newly hatched chicks and young turkeys. The boys loved picking them up and how they all ran and jumped on each others heads to shove themselves into the tightest corner if we even walked in their direction.

And the highlight of the trip was that the kind farmer let the boys play in the parked skid steer for a long while as we chatted. I was particularly happy that we had A put on his big rubber gloves (you can see them in his pic below)...they saved him from being zapped when he grabbed an electrified fence just as his dad forgot to watch for that. Whew. Gotta love kid sized gardening gloves. Perfect for farmwork, skidsteer "driving" and insulation.

We had a wonderful time, enjoyed the spectacular scenery and fresh air filled only with the sounds of the birds and a chicken or sheep holler here and there, and appreciated the work, knowledge and dedication it takes to be a small farmer - you are appreciated. And to the most gentle farm dog ever - thanks for being so sweet to my boys. More flickr pix...

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