CSA members really make a day wonderful! On Saturday we had a one hour tour around the farm at 2 PM. The best part of Saturday's tour for me, no offense adults, was the kids. The kids were excited and running and playing and talking and asking questions and exploring. Here are a few pictures of our time together.
This little one is a twin. She and her twin + parents arrived via bike wagon from Canning. Her little eyes were darting all around taking it all in.
Steve was harvesting Jerusalem Artichokes when we came along. Josh got down to dig some up for us to see. They are in this weeks share. These ones we planted in rows to see how the size and quality would turn out. They turned out really well compared to previous years in terms of size. I haven't tried one yet so we will have to see how the flavour goes. Let us know what you think:))
We did a walk through the greenhouse. Tomatoes are popping up, lettuce and many other veggies. Flowers are coming along nicely. The whole space is full. The heat and the moisture feel great.
Some of the kids love the tractors...even if they don't work so well:)
Kingsley and Bolo are getting the door put onto the tunnel that Jon seeded on Friday.
Here we are...viewing where in a few weeks there will be green....beet greens, radish, mixed greens.....yummy! Same tunnel as above. Kingsley and Bolo came along after we left.
Walking past the Swallows Nest Farm Stay and the pigs who were finding some green to nibble on.
Thanks for coming. It is great to meet you and talk with you and share with you the farm and all it provides for us.
Here's a photo of the new CSA Headquarters as promised! We had a little trouble getting the desk in as the door was a 1/2" too narrow, so Jon did this:
As I am getting settled in my new office, I have also been spending a lot of time in it. With this week being the first week of the new CSA season, I am excited to get the new members up and running with their first shares. I have learned from last year that this is the week to tell people things... They are more likely to read the Week 1 newsletter than week 28 or week 37.
This is my busy time. Jon works in production, so his busy time is in the summer. In the winter, I have a heavier admin load due to Organic Certification applications, annual updates to our Food Safety Program, CSA Registration and all the annual work that comes with that (website updates, updates to our processes and logistics, etc, etc). It all comes to a head THIS WEEK, which I have been looking forward to since we opened registration in January. We signed up members for two months and I interacted with a lot of really great people and I guess that's why I look forward to it. Also, it's turning a page to a new season, and so there's a feeling of starting fresh.
This is one of those weeks where I have put in a full work week in the past 3 days (that's including Saturday and Sunday). I love the work associated with these special times of year- getting members trained so that they will be great members all year and our journey together will be mutually rewarding. All the time spent now referring people and adding answers to the new Membership Guide will pay off in less of the same questions over and over again all year, as well as well-trained members who make less mistakes and know how to self-serve at locations and what is expected of them, as well as an understanding of how the CSA works. So, I see it as a bit of pay-it-forward to myself: put the time in now and reap the benefit all CSA season.
However, in addition to all the support from the other team members at the farm (and they also have to put up with my hyper excited energy, stimulated my a little too much caffeine and my passion for what I call BIG WEEKS-- Moments where my Dad would say the inappropriate "B to the W" moniker, which is the only description I can think of-- I have always thrived on BIG WEEKS of BIG DAYS, requiring B to the W energy... I shrivel on routine), I have been relying on my partner Jon, at least 4 times more than usual so far this week. On Saturday he helped me move into the new office, Sunday I worked all day and he made a pot of chili for the week's lunches and brought a picnic lunch to me at Canard and then had supper ready when I arrived home at 9 pm (and he did some laundry for me, which is never something that is shared in our house), last night he cleaned the house and took out the garbage and compost and tonight he is heading to the grocery store (as I have just been diagnosed with IBS and need some foods that are easier on my system-- I am starting to follow a FODMAP diet soon and so trying to cut out the things that are on the "no" list).
At any rate, I was enjoying the scenery on my new commute to work today (it is 1 km shorter for me to go a different way than via Church Street to the Canard office from our house in New Minas), and thinking about how there's no way I could do this week without all the wonderful people in my life, especially Jon! I will have to remember this in the summer when he is working Saturdays and later into the evenings! Farming is a team effort, and it's nice to have a partner to take care of you when things get really crazy. Thanks Jon, love you!
Look forward to meeting new faces this week out on deliveries!
The sun is shining bright this morning. The forecast isn't great for tomorrow. I think I am enjoying the sun even more when I think about what tomorrow might bring.
Yesterday I posted about the greenhouse...and what is seeded in there and someone asked for more....SO.....here is some more info on what is happening on the farm.
Today is Tuesday. Tuesday for those of you in Halifax know today is share day.
Right now, 8 AM, sitting in our kitchen, i can hear Jon down stairs in the 'commercial' kitchen rinsing the sprouts. They are grown in a room, in glass jars, with a grow lamp over top of them.
Josh is on his way out the door and is planning to get ready for a blizzard. I am not sure what that means exactly. Likely he will secure the pig houses, get bins more secure outside, check that all to doors are shut, ensure there is lots of wood, etc, etc.
Falicia is on her way in to work now. She has been busy entering invoices for the 2014/15 season. In case you are wondering, many of your payments have arrived (thank you!), and we are busy entering them. Hopefully in good time for an April statement:) Also, you can check on the TapRoot webpage for your account balance to be sure you agree it is correct:)
Courtney and Patrick arrived last week from Jamaica - on Thursday to be exact. Today they are cutting up squash for the shares.
There is no seeding happening today on the farm. Tim R does most of the seeding and he is away today doing deliveries today.
When he seeds again, he is seeding tomatoes.
Lily is asking me to get off the computer and drive her to school - Got to run! Have a great day!
I LOVE getting feedback from members about how they are enjoying the shares, especially when we send something different. This week's share included frozen peas, and here's what Kim had to say about them:
I'd like to point out that the frozen peas are like candy. I've always thought frozen peas were squishy gross things, but I make myself try everything anyway. And now I can't stop sneaking into the bag and stealing handfuls! Ha! They're so good!
Did you know that 2014 is the International Year of the Family Farm? April 25th, 26th and 27th will find us celebrating our farming heritage at the annual Saltscapes Magazine Expo. As many of you know, our beloved Patricia is Andrew Bishop's eldest daughter from Noggins Corner Farm. With her and Josh behind the helm of TapRoot, the connection between the two farms runs deep in many ways.
And now we need your help!
We need a tag line or slogan that represents the family and farming connection between TapRoot and Noggins. We will use it at our shared booth at Saltscapes and perhaps beyond! Think of something catchy and concise that showcases the pride that we all have in being from the land that nourishes the great food we eat.
Please post your ideas on our facebook page-- Thanks for your creativity and see you at the Expo!