Every single year I have been a farmer I find myself in the same state of panic and frenzy as I am right now.
Winter is coming.
Last week we had our first taste of the rains when it literally poured buckets.
Or maybe that was just my tears of frustration and agony.
This beautiful, amazing work that we’ve chosen for ourselves has a terrible habit of turning you into a ball of sadness and doom when the rain comes.
It also brings to light everything that’s wrong with your paths, shelters, and pasture.
Mud. Flood. Mud.
Cue the nervous breakdown.
Matthew and I stayed up late one night and made the ultimate list of everything that was wrong with our farm, and everything we needed to get fixed immediately.
And then we went on a begging tour. See this text message below? Matthew’s sister was coming home from college and his mom was trying to figure out our schedule so they could all come to the farm. (I’m the one on the right basically saying, “werk werk werk”, Matthew is the one trying to make work sound fun, and Leo is the one laughing because he pretty much hears the same thing from us all day, every day).
Pretty much anyone who dared to text us last week we asked to work. Through the luck of good friends we amassed a pretty solid work party.
And then we worked.
Did I mention it was still pouring?
Our amazing people worked right alongside us for two days straight. They pounded posts, they dug fence holes, they chopped firewood, they planted trees…and they did it all with a smile on their face.
At the end of the weekend we were a little rejuvenated, feeling a little less doomsday-ey. And then, Monday morning, bright and early, we were in the pen with the teenage goats, and in just those 5 minutes, added at least 5 more urgent tasks to our list.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. This farm is my heart and soul, but dang, it sure can kick you when you’re down.
And it’s not just the farm. It’s the business.
We make incredible cheese. I mean, truly, this cheese will make a goat believer out of anyone. And our yogurt! Oh! Our yogurt! We have received so many personal emails about how our yogurt is literally changing people’s lives. From helping with someone’s weight loss goals to fixing chronic upset tummies, our yogurt is the favorite of so many people. We even got a call from a woman who called us to tell us how much it had helped her cat’s health problems! There is nothing like our yogurt on the market.
But here we are, begging vendors to stock our cheese. Every night after we put the kids to bed we send at least three emails to potential places that may want to carry our cheese. Most people don’t write us back. Some people write us back with initial excitement but then nothing comes of it. Some people ask for samples, which we always provide, but then usually nothing happens. And then, a few of these interactions turn into actual sales, but usually only after months of dialogue.
The truth is, the world of grocery is so hard to break into. And we are feeling it.
So. Just to recap. The farm’s emergency list of projects is a mile long, the rainy season is upon us, and we still have so much cheese to sell.
Are we having fun yet?
The answer. Surprisingly. Is yes.
This business is a family business. I wake up every morning with my husband and our two kids, feeling so lucky to live on this farm. The strength of people we are creating on a diet of fresh air and goat milk is truly remarkable. I mean, where else can kids dress up in their rain gear and jump in puddles while their parents pound fence posts?
I still believe in our mission to create food for our community. I love opening our doors for farm tours, classes, events, and goat yoga. At the end of the day we aren’t ready to stop hustling.
Don’t quit your day dream, people. Don’t quit.
Ps. If you want to come to goat yoga, it’s supposed to be sunny this weekend and we have a class! Get tickets online >>