Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food!

Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food - PA News (1)

I am SO excited!!!  My small town has this amazing Farmers Market throughout the summer.  It is full of local vendors as well as vendors that come all the way up from Detroit and they offer an awesome variety of food, crafts and art.

This coming Saturday we are hosting an event called Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Event.

We will have a booth set up for people to stop at and submit questions that they would like to ask directly to a farmer.  Then at 11 am we will have a panel of 3 farmers take the stage and get those questions answered.

This idea came about because I was at a farm conference this winter where we had a panel of consumers and we submitted questions to them to learn what they know about food, what they think about farming, and what they want to know about where their food comes from.

It is shocking for someone connected to agriculture to sit and listen to these normal people who work, have families, and buy food to see that they have NO IDEA what we do, how we do it, and in one case really thought that we might be trying to poison them.

But, what I really learned is that they have questions!
They want to know where their food comes from. They want a face and a name to go with their Frosted Flakes and Baked Beans.

The average American is now at least three generations removed from the farm. In fact, farm and ranch families make up less than 2 percent of the U.S. population. The United States today has more bus drivers than it has farmers!

So here is our chance!

Come to the Farmer’s Market on this Saturday morning August 19th!

Ask questions, meet a few farmers that grow your food, learn HOW we do it, and WHY we do things a certain way on each of our farms!

We would LOVE to have you and we would love to meet you!!!!

 

P.S. You are always MORE than welcome to ask me questions here!

 

Wheat Harvest

Drone

Wheat Harvest from above

It has been an exhausting week here at the Little House! I should have gotten on a post up earlier but I have to be honest with you, I was just plain tired.

IMG_5242Wheat harvest is always hot and this year it seems like its been one of the dirtiest too! Farmer has had more changes of clothes this week than in a while!  He said it seemed like all the extra greasy jobs happened this week.

When the rain came this weekend and cut us off from finishing the last wheat field we grabbed the kids and went to a festival before church.  Yesterday we picked all the produce from the garden, went up town and played a game Putt Putt golf and then I came home and took a 2 hour nap.

This morning the kids got their goat walking in and a trip to the library. Then we went to town to run errands and meet my dad.  He took Luke home with him after work to spend a few days getting spoiled and helping my parents get some projects finished around the house.  As I said on Facebook earlier this week, our family is really blessed to have such wonderful grandparents that can pick up the slack when we are in our busy time.  My mother in-law has been picking kids up from daycare, feeding them supper and getting them to bed for about 5 days straight. She is a Godsend and a wonderful example of a FarmHer.

We are still waiting for our last wheat field to dry out a bit before we finish up our season but in the meantime that garden I mentioned earlier has been in over drive!  So far I have frozen 21 cups of peas, 4 packages of radishes, and 14 cups of green beans.  I am currently waiting on my beets to finish boiling and also have about 15 pickles cut up and ready to go.

Gardening is not my first love, as a matter of fact it is kind of an farm garden(Everyone on the farm shares all the produce) and unless I walk over to it I sometimes forget that it is there and needs tending.  This year the weeds got a head of me and it’s not really pretty, but it is also still producing plenty to eat!
We currently have a few more peas, lots of pickles, some beets, and the tomatoes and sweet corn are about to start ripening!

What is your favorite treat from the garden? What do you do with it?

PS: When we are super busy in the field I still manage to get some funny updates on Facebook so follow me HERE too!

Spring planting is just around the corner!

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One of the wheat fields we sprayed today.

Around here you don’t need a calendar to tell you when it’s starting to get close to planting season.

First equipment starts getting shuffled around and those last-minute maintenance projects get finished up. Equipment gets hooked up to its corresponding tractor, then the weather app gets a workout speculating when a weather event will occur. Is it going to rain? How much will we get? What’s the temperature?

Then the field scouting starts or in my world “date night!” Driving by fields on the way home from town, hopping out with a shovel to check the moisture. Is it getting dry enough we won’t cause compaction? Calling customers for seed deliveries and coordinating drop offs start. Will they have enough? Will they change their order?

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Grace & Faith getting the gator ready for spring!

Lastly the excitement mixed with anxiety starts. It’s almost time! If we get a few more days of sun we could start! If planting in the corn belt is delayed will it cause a price increase?

It’s a promise of new adventure, growth, income and most of all God’s beauty. If its dry and we get in the fields early things can be fairly calm. This year things are not all that calm. A combination of low crop prices and unfavorable weather has increased anxiety in this house for a time. With low temperatures and lots of rain it has been a waiting game to see when it will be dry enough to get in the fields here. The north wind off the lake and more low temps are currently not helping the drying conditions though.

IMG_4565However, today we are able to spray our wheat for weeds and fungus! We grow Soft White Winter Wheat. We plant it in the fall and will harvest it in mid-July. Soft white wheat is ideal for baked goods that are not kneaded- like cookies, pancakes, pie crusts and crackers. Soft wheat has a very low gluten content, which, when used in baked goods that are not kneaded, results in a tender finished product. A lot of our wheat will end up in Jiffy pancakes, Kellogg’s cereal, and Goldfish crackers!

 

So the next time you are flipping some pancakes think of us!

pancakes joyofbaking

Photo credit-Thejoyofbaking.com