A few updates from the homestead. First off we got a new member of the homesteading family. Squealer is a pot belly pig. He was given to us and has become a member of the family. Though not for food he is teaching us a thing or two about raising pigs. We received him in a trade and my two girls fell in love with him. He is very young, so he is not weaned yet. I really was not expecting the sausage smell of his breath. I was thinking more along the lines of puppy smell. Secondly, the tomato plants that sprang up around the homestead thanks to the chickens have started to produce tomatoes. Permaculture never ceases to amaze me, nothing better than free tomatoes and didn’t have to so any work for them other than picking them. Also, many of the apple and pomegranate seeds planted into the food forest are now seedlings. I’m very excited about that.
Our first attempt at butchering chickens went very well. After butchering our own chickens, it makes me appreciate all the work our ancestors went through just to put food on the table. A few hours of work and I looked at my wife and said, “All this we and we got just enough wings for an order of hot wings.” A few lessons learned: 1. Time the raising of the chicks to when the time comes to butcher it’s not so hot. I sweated the same butchering a few chickens as I did hiking four mile in the mountains. Wait till fall to butcher would have been much better on us. We raised a dual purpose bird, and I think we need to raise meat birds for processing instead. The carcasses were on the small side. Not too small, but could have been better. Team work is defiantly the key. My wife was much better at the eviscerating the chicken than I was, and I dispatched and plucked the birds. Her smaller hands fit into the body cavity much better than mine, while my stringer hands were better at plucking. Now I can’t wait to taste the fruits of our labor.
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