Wednesday, October 21, 2015

October Babies

We just received and opened our package of our new baby chicks!  Aren't they cute? 
How do you count 50 playful chicks chirping and moving around?  You take a picture and then count 'em!

Earlier this year, there was a bird flu that killed thousands of turkeys in the Midwest.  So hopes of ordering any last spring to raise for Thanksgiving and Christmas was not going to happen.  The hatchery's were all sold out for the year.  

Now that Thanksgiving is just around the corner, it's time to start thinking about what I'm going to serve for the holidays, right?  Well, not really.  I should have planned this months ago.   

 Unfortunately, because I waited too long to place my order for turkeys in the spring, (although I didn't know what was going on) we won't be eating turkey on Thanksgiving and Christmas!

 This is sad!!  

"Tom", the "star" of our Thanksgiving Dinner, 2014, growing up on fresh pasture.

So now what am I going to do?

Hm................chicken!!  The next best thing, right?

 After growing our own turkey, it's hard to go back to buying one from the store so we'll have to wait until next spring to start growing some more.

Last year was our first Thanksgiving that we celebrated here on our farm.  And, last year was the first time, I ever prepared and roasted a turkey (and I'm old)!   Smiles!

It was a real treat to be able to raise our own turkey.  We've done quite a lot of chicken processing in the past so processing a turkey, we thought, should be pretty much the same, other then the size of the bird.  And even though "Tom" was was quiet a bit larger than a chicken, everything went smooth.

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Ever since we've been married, we've been able to see both side of our families for all the holidays.  We lived fairly close to each of them so it was easy for us to split up the day; one family earlier in the day and the next in the evening.  So because of that, I've never had the opportunity to host a holiday at our home other than a few Christmas Eve's--which I loved doing.

But that's okay!!  I'm not complaining, because I sooooo enjoyed going to see our families and spending the holiday's at their homes.  And I knew that someday, I would get the chance to be the hostess, so I just needed to be patient.

Now here I am. 

At my age, you would think that I would be over wishing that my mom and grandma were still here to prepare our holiday meals for us, but I don't think I'll ever be over it.  I really miss those days now that they're gone, but I'm so very thankful for the memories that I have.  They always made those times very special and their homes were always so very warm and inviting, and now I have the opportunity to follow in their foot steps.

 Do you think it's too late to start our own family traditions?

I don't think it's ever to late for us, or anyone else for that matter.

It's just that the transition might be a little difficult in the beginning.

Oh, I can only wish that I could go back and really thank them for all that they did to make our holidays a special one, but I can't.  So, it's time to look to the future and start making some new memories here on the farm.

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We processed young "Tom" about a week before Thanksgiving last year,
and let him sit on ice until the "big day". 


I have never tasted a turkey like this before!  

It was kind of funny too, because, we had Grandpa Mickey, Uncle Mark, Aunt Karen, and the girls for the Thanksgiving weekend.  Of course, I was nervous to have them share in our meal with us for my "first Thanksgiving".  Especially since they're "suburbanites" and the star of the Thanksgiving meal was a turkey that we had raised.

Even though my husband and I were born and raised in the suburbs, we've always longed for the country and did many things that suburbanites don't usually do. So Uncle Mark and his family knew who they were dealing with here.

And because of that, I'm sure Uncle Mark and Aunt Karen were a little nervous about our turkey too, but they would never have told us.  Smile. 

When the time came for us to sit and enjoy our meal together, I think we were all surprised at how amazing the turkey was!

 We didn't do anything to this turkey to make it taste the way it did except give it a place to roam free under the sun, drink clean fresh water, and eat as many bugs and creepy crawling things that it could. 

Tender, juicy, and Oh!  So tasty! 

Now, how am I ever going to break it to them-- and my family--that we were not going to be having turkey again this year?  I don't know?!?  Especially since Esther just told me that Uncle Mark said that he and his family were not going to come back again this year if we did not raise our own bird!   

"What!"  I thought. 

Do you believe he just said that?

Well, I haven't told anyone this yet, but this year, it's going to be chicken and all the trimmings for the coming holidays!  And a chicken is a bird, right?  

Anyway, everything will be just fine--right?


 It will.

 I will be, because Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful for what God has given us.  And, if it's not going to be turkey, then................

We'll be thankful--for chicken! 

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(If all goes as planned, our little chicks will be in the freezer in about 8 to 10 weeks.)

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This is a photo of a confinement turkey house in Australia.

This is a picture of how these birds live.  I wanted to link to the website, but I can not.  No human being should see the way these animals are treated.  Everything that we can touch and hear and see and smell and taste is a gift from God and we should treat it that way. 

This type of farming is also done in the United States of America.  In these houses, the birds never see the light of day and you have to wear a mask to even enter the building.

October 2015

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