Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Thank you!

Thank you everyone for the encouragement. It was late last night and I was feeling down about everything, particularly the meat birds. You are all right, I took on too much and am disappointed everything didn't work. The garden really has me down. Not having a tiller is killing me. I need to save up for one.

There is no one to process the meat birds. I checked. None of the meat processors do chickens. I put an add on Craigslist to see if I could find someone to do them, no luck. The laws regarding chicken processing in GA are very strict. I know a few people in GA that bring their chickens to SC to get them processed. But the place in SC has a minimum number they will do. It looks like raising meat birds and getting someone else to process them isn't an option here. I've decided I will gladly pay the $11 a bird for already processed, pasture raised chickens. I will just get a lot better at stretching the meat. I'm still not sure what I'm going to do with the 7 that are left. I put an add on Craigslist, but nothing. I guess I will lower the price or offer to trade for laying hens.

To counter yesterday's negativity, I thought I'd write some things that have been successes.

I got lots of zucchini and tomatoes! We have tons in the freezer. I'll be making sauce when it cools off.

I did get some peas this spring. I planted more for a fall crop but the meat birds ate all the seeds I planted.

I'm still milking my goat 6 months later. It is easy and just part of our routine.

The goats are all healthy and happy.

I raised 19 chicks to adulthood with only 1 death and that was Scissor Beak.

I raised 5 guinea keets to adulthood with no deaths.

I have a great food storage area!

For awhile I was providing the neighbors with eggs, thereby building community and my place in it.

Logan is happy and thriving.

I've learned A LOT! That will be another post.


Mary Anne Gruen said...

I'm so sorry to hear you're having a tough time. It's been a bad growing season up here in the north too. Plenty of people with plenty of experience threw away dead plants. Sometimes you can do everything right and things still don't work out.

Farming is an incredibly hard job. All I can suggest is to try and go along with Mother Nature as much as you can. Whenever you notice something that works, go with that. My biggest failures in gardening have always been in not following her lead.

Gail said...

Maybe you have a neighbor that would help butcher on the halves.

I do not envy your milking every day. We had a milk cow when I was young and I had to bring her in every morning and evening. I did not have to do all the milking but I swore I would never have a milk cow!

You have your hands full! A farm does not get in good operational order over night and you have done things in leaps and bounds and have done it very well.

You should be extremely proud of all you have accomplished in this short amount of time.

Are any of your meat chickens hens or are they all roosters?

Sometimes many places have a poulty market once a month. Check on a feed store community board or ask the person at the store.

Hang in there, you are doing a he...uh, heck of a job!

Joanna@BooneDocksWilcox said...

yeah, I can only take on so much and then I crash.

Have you tried SMART CHICKEN?
http://www.smartchicken.com/org.phpa coworker was just recommending to me, I haven't tried 'em yet.

I don't know if this link will help ya or not but check it out

CeeCee said...

I'm glad your chin is up a bit today. I've felt pretty low lately too. Something in the air, maybe?

Something came to me regarding your birds that are left. Here's a link that might be able to help you.
Near the very top is an underlined thing that says "Georgia EatWild Map". If you click on it, it will send you to a map of all the natural food growers in GA. It lists what they grow (cattle, chickens, corn, etc.). One of them may be able to process your birds or at least take them off your hands. Good luck. Chin up. :)

Sandy said...

LOL! I just got your email concerning your ad on Craigs list and decided to catch up on your blog. It looks as though we are both in the same mess.

Let's get together and maybe we can figure something out.


linda m said...

I sure hope you can find a solution as to what to do with your meat birds. Hopefully some of the suggestions listed help you out. I'm glad you were able to find so many things to be grateful for - you are very blessed. Never forget that you are loved no matter what.

Linda said...

You have accomplished a lot this year! Just starting out I think is always hard especially if you don't have the support of your husband and didn't grow up with this stuff... I think, and it is something I had to learn, ya gotta go slow. I remember being young and jumping in head first as you have done - it didn't work. I had way to many irons in the fire. So this time I am determined to start at a much slower pace, which I am doing. Even going slow has been a challenge for me because now I am older and not as spry as I once was. But I feel I am getting there.

I have an idea for the meat birds. I know it is hard to do them. But why not take and set one day to do ONE, then next week, or whenever you feel you can again, do another. It really does get easier they more you do it. Then after you have them clean and dressed stuff them in the freezer until the stomach settles and then break one out and remember it is just meat. That is what I used to do to get through it.

Try to look at it different when you think of it being a mess and unsanitary - I do believe attitude is the real key to the whole thing...

You can do this Christy! Hang in there and don't give up!

Christy said...

Linda, that is what I've been doing. I've been doing 1 every other day. I have to really psych myself up but then an hour later, I'm done. I just don't want them to get too old and tough.

Gail, I don't mind the milking now that it is only once a day. I actually enjoy it. It is a nice bonding time with my doe. I did ask one neighbor about helping but he had just processed 20 a few days earlier. I didn't know he was doing them or I would have brought mine over. I do have another neighbor to ask that hunts. He might be willing to do it.

Gayle said...

I'm glad that you were able to find something to be positive about. It's hard sometimes, isn't it? I raised some beautiful show bantams and layers, but a dog came through and killed all but two (like 30-some birds!!). Then a raven ate one just two days ago (I caught him in the act). I am frustrated as well. I grew a lot of beautiful flowers, but my veggies stunk. Sometimes we just have to look a little harder for that ray of sunshine in our lives. (I quit doing the meat birds, too. It grossed me out). Hang in there....it make take years to achieve exactly what you want, but it will happen.