Baah Baah Blog
Wow. what a wonderful relaxing day spent with our farm friends. Thank EWE to all our friends who joined us. We sheared 9 sheep. Met the 2 new babies and found out that 2 new lambs were born last night. (both doing well with their baah-U-tiful mom Bella)
Everyone one took home a little bag of wool & made a cute wooly sheep project. And hey yall, i just "Googled" the words wet felting with kids -- and found an amazing little project:
check this out: kleas.typepad.com/kleas/2007/05/tutorialfelting.html
Let me know if you would like to do a workshop like this! I loved the piece they framed as a mother's day gift and i was already dreaming aobut doing squares that could be sewn together into a cool scarf... so many possibilities.
My 4H friends Mason & Daven escorted the babies around for everyone to see. They will be showing the lambs in the near future at our regional 4H shows. We had such a great turn out today we were able to show our support for our 4H farm team with a $200 donation so that they could purchase a special regulation pen used for shows. You go guys - we can't wait to see your ribbons.
A special thank EWE goes out to our amazing friend Randy who shears our sheep. He is so patient & kind. Shearing is hard work and we appreciate his willingness to do it on a day when all of our friends can participate and learn. Rany -- ewe R the best!.
Well, the sun is starting to pop up and I'm dying to get in the garden today. If you missed the sheep shearing sunday you can see one of the videos of Luke our biggest sheep getting sheared on our YouTube Site. just go to the home page and click the YouTube Button to get there. It is cool.
Hey guys. Last night in honor of Fat Tuesday & Mardi Gras we MOOO-ved our cool Cowparade Cow "Mardi Gras" in to the big beautiful new lush green pasture out behind the freshly painted ArtBarn. She looks great. Come for a visit and have your picture made with her!
There are lots and lots of things buzzing here at the farm. The Farm Facelift is still going on. We re-done part of TheArtBarn so Louise & Angus Bramblett Curtis our cows will have their own Cow Palace. We are still working on some wacky decorations for that. TheArtBarn has a fresh coat of paint and looks Farm-tastic! A new black 4 board fence is up and lots lots more.
You have to come be part of our team of friends who are OUTSTANDING in the Field... visit with Mardi Gras & check out all the new farm fresh things going on this spring!
hawgsnkisses - farmer sue
Hey guys - I am so excited - our bee keeper Miss Trina B - came to check out our hives the other day (and NO I'm not getting itchy because the wedding is getting close... I mean BEE hives yall)
She came with OUT her hat, veil, gloves and bee keepers suit... all B-cause she did not think we would have bees. Here in Georgia we have had one of the craziest winters in ages. 5 Snows. Yep 5 - there are pictures posted in the gallery. The first two were fun but then after that you just rolled your eyes and said oh no snow!
ok - back to BEES. Lots of beekeepers in our area apparently lost their bees. I've been out checking every so often on a warm days and have seen bees on their little front porch - and have done the happy dance right there in the garden myself.
Well, Miss Trina B absolutely could not Bee-lieve it... There they were ... I gotta say it... Busy as Bees ... making HONEY and lots of it. Miss Trina said there is atleast 30 or 40 pounds this year. Check out the pictures below of our tiny worldsaving friends hard at work! Soon Miss Trina will show us how we get honey from the comb to the jar and we can celebrate with a taste of heaven.
When you see the pictures... you will see Miss Trina is in shorts. No Hat. No Veil. No Sleeves... and she did not even get stung -- I loaned her my farm hat near the end because 1 bee kept trying to get stuck in her hair.
oh no, I'm gonna start ramblin. The words taste of heaven take me right back to my cousins back porch in the country - in Madison, Florida. Hot toast with butter and honey for the first time and I actually said to my awesome Aunt B (yep B for Beverly - I'll blog about her later!) ... THIS MUST BE WHAT HEAVEN TASTES LIKE.
I hope you enjoy our BEE-u-tiful pix of some of the hardest working guys on the farm.
I will post a little book of photos in just a bit.
BEE sweet. BEE kind. make a difference in someones day today!
hawgsnkisses from Farmer Sue
Cockadoodle dooo from your friend farmer sue -- It is Friday and yep we've still got snow and ice all over the place.
The Animals are all doing just fine. They are tucked into bed each night. Some of the horses are wearing pajamas. The Chickens and Bunnies requested to keep a night light on ALL night long - (it is really a special heat lamp to keep them cozy - they love it) The pigs are snuggled deep down in the hay inside their pigloos.
The snow makes everything look so peaceful and pretty!
I will post some fun pictures for you in just a bit and hopefully some video of the new baby bunnies too!
Olivia & Farmer Sue
Hi friends, It's me Oivia your barnyard piglet reporter.
Everything was a buzz last night as Miss Trina brought us our NEW BEE family. It was fun to watch as Miss Trina unloaded the bees from her car.... yep that's right... her car! Right there in the hatch back - a big box of bees! She said these were very friendly bees!
She waited until dusk when all the bees come home from their big day out gathering pollen. After they snuggle in side she lifts the lid and gently puffs a little smoke on them which makes them stay calm.
This family of bees.... or HIVE -- is brand new. A neighbor called Miss Trina to say that there was a swarm of bees collecting in one of his trees. Miss Trina went over in her bee suit, climbed up a ladder and gently brushed the bees into the box. She said she was so excited BEE cause the young Queen was right there with them. Miss Trina left the new bee box below the tree over night and all the rest of the bees found their way into the box -- how cool is that.
When Miss Trina began unloading the bees you could hear the buzzing sound inside the box - it was amazing.
Farmer Sue took several pictures of the bees being unloaded and set up in our tiny BUSY BEE GARDEN.
We hope you will enjoy seeing them. We still have some honey left for sale.
from farmer sue & Olivia
Olivia our talking Piglet Reporter went to school today. She rode in my lap all the way. I must admit a little ouchy at times! We had a great day at school and everyone LOVED HER. Everyone is amazed that she can run around with or without a leash, that she comes when I call her and... that she is so darn cute... actually she is a very very pretty pig.
Am hoping to have the new web up shortly. I love the way it is looking. Small Farm Central is amazing - the package they put together has everything a farm girl dreams about having to make the farm work in real life and on line. I hope you will like it too. Please send me your comments & suggestions of other things you would like to see.
Am also working on the social media aspect of this webby world - I am new to Facebook & Twitter. I was actually able to post a little slide show of my baby lamb Cecil getting his first hair cut or "shearing".
Tomorrow should be another FARM tastic Day with friends here visiting.
farmer sue & olivia too
talk about pattie baker planting garden. shirley potatoes.
asparagus popping up.
and remember... never whack yourself in the head with a fence board... ask me how i know!
Wow - we found more baby bunnies under the barn! Spring has clearly sprung. We added them to Rabbit Ranch which i jokingly said is now... Re-in-Rabbitated. It seems a year or so ago an older brother of one of my birthday friends decided to let all the rabbits go. Amazing... or not... The rabbits are all over the farm - happy & safe - and way to wiggley to put back in rabbit ranch.
Now that spring is here and babies are popping up everywhere we decided to use Rabbit Ranch as the "nursery" for a while. We have the baby bunnies, adorable chicks and new ducklings... along with a NEW SIGN painted by me - farmer sue - hope you like it.
Ok. this is kinda kooky and I assume it could only happen here. The weather was so beautiful for the sheep shearing yesterday... I went to bed with all the doors open. Some how... Some way... I found an egg on the oriental carpet in my bedroom... A perfectly perfect EGG. I shook my head and said... only you farmer sue!
Small farms today are direct marketers and as such are in the business of relationship marketing with each customer that buys products from the farm. The customer is not at the CSA pickup, farmer's market, or on-farm market because it is easiest or cheapest food source -- they are there because they respect the farmer, want to support the local economy, and feel that their dollars are spent on a worthwhile endeavor. Every chance you get as a farm to interact with your customers should reinforce the connection to the land and make the customer feel like they are doing a good thing by patronizing your business. This is a very difficult task for a busy farmer. I challenge you to take your relationship marketing into the 21st century and start a blog on your farm website.
Your farm should blog because it is an easy and time-effective way for you to get your story out to customers. Repeat customers come to you because of the relationship that they have with you and a blog is a perfect way for you to start and augment the real-world interaction that you have with the customer. Granted it does take some time, energy, and thought to produce effective blog posts that communicate the farm experience, but that post will easily be read 100s or 1000s of times over the life of your blog. That works out to be an extremely time-efficient way to build a consistent and faithful customer base. Customers that read your blog will be more understanding of blemishes or crop shortages because you can explain the exact cause of the problems. This becomes a story that they can take home with their produce and they will feel more connected to the farm and the food if they know some of the challenges that went into growing it.
The complaint I hear the most is that farmers don't have time to be writers as well as producers. Steve Sando of Rancho Gordo dedicates one afternoon every two weeks to writing six blog articles. He then releases one each Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday. There are other techniques of course too: get a trusted intern to write an article each week, find a very enthusiastic and involved customer who will volunteer to write a blog article every once and a while, or just commit to posting a short update once each week. There is no right way to write or schedule your blog, but post on a regular schedule and write with passion because passion is infectious.
At this point, if you are considering a farm blog, start reading a few established farm blogs and get some general advice on how to write blogs. I have discussed some aspects of blogging at Small Farm Central in Farm blogging isn't always literature, but this is and What I learned during an interview with Steve Sando of Rancho Gordo. Blogging will be a topic that I come back to over the next few months because I believe it is the core of any modern farm web marketing strategy.
Some farm blogs to get you started:
- Eat Well Farm Blog : recently discussing problems with the Med Fly and how they are certifying their packing shed as Med Fly-free.
- Life of Farm Blog : this blog is sponsored by the Mahindra tractor company. Perhaps the writer got a free tractor for writing the blog?
- Tiny Farm Blog : wonderful photos and at least a post a day.
- Rancho Gordo Blog : this popular blog receives 300-500 unique visitors a day (which is impressive for a farm website) and even helped the author secure a book deal.
Read about the process of writing a blog and more:
- Blogging Your Way Into a Business
- Business Blog Case Study: Stonyfield Farm
- Blogging for your customers versus blogging for your business
- How to Write Great Blog Content : Great advice from the #1 blogger.
Spend the next few weeks reading farm blogs and exploring some of the resources listed above. Then when you think you know enough about blogging to start, you will probably want to go back to Hosting Options to get your blog online. Not coincidentally, the Small Farm Central software contains all the features you need to get your blog (and farm website) up and running within a few days. I know that not very many farms are taking blogging seriously as a marketing tool, but I have a strong feeling that every serious farm will have a blog in five years.