Small Acre Farm

The absurdities of being older

I've been thinking about being older lately. Not getting older but actually being older. Every weekend when I haul my tables and displays to the farmers markets I think about it.  This spring when I realized I had packed on few pounds over the winter and they weren't shedding like usual I thought about it.  When I practice yoga and meditation and I send the breath to where it hurts and don't have enough breath for all that, I think about it. I used to be incredibly flexible. I could do the splits until I was 40 and then one day I found I couldn't. On the other hand, I'm gentler with myself now (mostly). I'm more intuitive about eating, resting and contemplating life. 

I do love this new non 9:00-5:00 life I've carved out for myself but sometimes I think I came to it a little late, learned to listen to myself a little too late.  I'm a fearful person by nature. Don't ask me why, that's a road you don't want to go down.  I am and that's that. Last week I went to a little gathering at a friends house.  Just three couples and our collective brood of 4 kids. One couple is younger than the rest of us by I'm guessing 15 years. We were talking about my business and I was saying that I'd rather be doing online and wholesale sales exclusively rather than the physical work of the markets. This younger guy asked me why I didn't just do it. I launched into my typical excuse about not being very good at promoting myself or seeking new clients. He looked genuinely puzzled and again asked my "Why?" Caught a little off guard but feeling at ease with these friends I said, "because they might say, no". And he said "So?"  In that moment the tiniest light of recognition about how absurd that argument  is dawned on me. 

I've done a few brave things in my life. I've climbed a few mountains, used to ride hunter jumper horses, put myself through grad school, had two babies, gracefully survived being fired at 50 and nearly 30 years ago I plucked up the courage to tell my sweetheart that I had fallen in love with her.  

Growing older brings the luxury of introspection and a delicate toughness.  I'm embracing it.  I'm hauling my market paraphernalia for another season and I'm preparing for the future by facing the possibility of "yes" rather than the absurdity of no.

Rhythms and disruptions - English Shepherd puppies at Small Acre Farm, Fort Collins, CO

The rhythms of the farm are everywhere. Starting the day with the early morning scolding of the magpie , the squirt, squirt of the milk in the pail, even the demanding "baa" of the sheep when breakfast is late seems to be in time to some internal ovine musical score.  The work has a rhythm as well.  Feed the chickens and gather the egg, feed the sheep, milk and feed the goats, feed the dogs, clean the milking equipment, breath a sigh. 

And then there are disruptions to the rhythm.  In the spring the birth of goat kids disrupts the rhythm with their noisy entrance to the world, their need for round the clock feeding and their joyful existence that demands participation.  I can't not stop to watch a group of lambs "sproinging" across the pasture or pet the soft new fur of the goat kids as I deliver their breakfast bottles to their wiggly, pushy selves.  

This is summer we had a group that brought total, blissful chaos to the predictable rhythm of the farm.  On May 26 Tilly, our English Shepherd female had 13 puppies.  Helpless at first, then swimming on their bellies around the plastic pool we use, first to contain them then later to give their mother respite from them.  Now, it's not like they were a surprise.  This litter was much anticipated.  This was Tilly and Tuck's (our ES male) first litter together, the first Small Acre Farm litter that was bred on our farm. The two are such different dogs and yet both an excellent representation of their breed.  Tuck is thoughtful to Tilly's bold, goofy to her intention and when visitors come to the farm, Tilly goes to check them out while Tuck comes to check on me.  Yin and Yang, the perfect match.

Back to the chaos on May 26 when at 4:00 pm after MUCH waiting and a whole night of panting, getting up, laying down, shredding my yoga mat and laying in true ES style, belly up on the bed (not allowed), the first puppy made an entrance.  Clear sable boy, followed by tri girl with tail tip, clear sable girl with aviator goggles, two tris in quick succession.  Then I lost track.  Somewhere in there Tilly got fastidious about biting off the umbilical cords and we had a gusher.  Pressure to what was left of the cord and a quick trip to town for styptic and all was right again.  At 11:00 p.m. there were 11 and we thought she was done so we headed into the house for a much needed shower and bed.  At midnight our daughter reported that there were 12 and by morning we had a bakers dozen. 

Tilly settled into a life of nursing, licking and quick potty break so hike we stood around in disbelief and awe at the miracle of life.  The rest of the summer is a big blur filled with wiggles, big slurpy kisses and a wonderful succession of puppy visitors.  Thirteen is a lot of dogs to place and we are committed to the breed and making sure the fit is good for the job and the family.   So many have asked how we can possibly let them go.  I can honestly say that I am just as excited about having them for the first several weeks of their life as I am to see them go on to happy families and farms.  It is such a joy to share these wonderful dogs with others.  There are still a few puppies left from this wonderful litter.  If you are interested you can send me an e-mail at tedi@smallacrefarm.com.

Mobile Hen - Farm Fresh Eggs in Fort Collins, CO

Get your farm fresh eggs delivered to your business in Fort Collins, Colorado by Small Acre Farm

Nothing says farm fresh like fresh eggs!  Did you know that Small Acre Farm offers weekly egg delivery to your business from spring through fall in the Fort Collins Area?  Our delivery area is the square between Harmony Road, Taft Hill, Vine Drive and Lemay Avenue.  If you are outside our delivery area we can bring your eggs to the Fort Collins farmer’s market on Harmony in the Ace Hardware parking lot on Sundays.  

Bars of our goat milk soap can be added to any delivery.  Requests for soap can be placed by text or email by noon the Sunday before egg delivery.  

There are still several egg memberships available.  Contact us to sign up

Delivery day
Tuesdays to your business
Sundays to the Fort Collins Farmers Market

Egg prices (delivered) 
$6.00 per dozen
$3.00 per half dozen

We love it when you recycle your reusable egg cartons with us. Please check our soap store for available soap and prices.

hand-delivered-farm-fresh-eggs-northern-colorado
feeding-chickens-spring-farm-fresh-eggs-northern-colorado-fort-collins-small-acre-farm

Most chickens are seasonal layers.  Once the days start getting longer they swing into action! Commercial egg operations and some chicken owners put lights on in their chicken coops to make the hens lay year around.  We let our chickens cycle naturally so that they get a break. Needless to say the first fresh egg of the season is much anticipated.

This year our lovely ladies started laying intermittently in February.  Even in the winter they like to get out around the farm during the day and we were finding eggs in the snow.  That’s the kind of Easter egg hunt I like!  Now they are laying in their boxes and gathering isn’t as much of an adventure (except for the one hen who found a great hiding spot under an overturned wheelbarrow).  

feeding-chickens-farm-small-sustainable-northern-colorado
spring-chickens-small-sustainable-farm-fort-collins-colorado-small-acre-farm

We love our chickens and we love their farm fresh eggs. Sign up for a "Mobile Hen" subscription today!