Coming Soon!

Coming Soon!

Custom Wood Crafts

Coming in 2020. Sustainably harvested wood crafts from The Fox and Crow Farm.

In 2017 The Fox and Crow Farm endured a major wind storm and lost many trees. We witnessed decade and century old trees simply uprooted and knocked over. It was a terrible loss. We vowed to save as much of the wood as we possibly could and invested in a band saw mill to mill lumber onsite. We built our Windfall Cabin in spring of 2019.

Now, we are proud to offer some unique farm crafts from our harvested lumber. From Red Oak, White Oak, Birch, Maple and other various species, we have designed cutting boards, bottle openers and other unique gifts.

Stay tuned for our official launch in our Fox and Crow Farm Store.

Today was a good day

I just had a break through with my horse Tango. I think we both felt it and it was too amazing not to share with you.

Tango has mounting issues. Mounting from the ground, a mounting block and even just being elevated around her. She gets mean, ears go farther back than I have ever seen on a horse, bites at her shoulder, has bitten me, swishes her tail and stomps her back foot.

I have tried several different methods and I always get results but this issue just never seems to really go away.

Today I just stood on a tree stump in her paddock. Tango came to me (came to me!!) and turned her ears and started being all pissy. I put my hands in my pockets and just shifted my weight left to right and took deep breaths. Tango moved in closer to me. If I looked at her or moved my hand towards her I would get the sass. So I didnt. I just stood there minding my own business. She kept moving in closer and closer to me. Her breath got longer and longer and she shifted her weight right into me.

Now we must have stood there for about 15 minutes and I could tell she was falling asleep. Her lower lip was sagging, her head was low, her ears forward. I leaned in to her and touched her.

Tango turned her head real quick and I thought for sure she was going to go sour. She didnt!

Here I was, standing on the stump, elevated, my hip at her withers (she put herself there mind you) and I was touching her without any fuss.

What was different about today than all the other days?
I am working on mounting my little rescue TWH, Penny. I have had her since she was a wee little rescued filly and I earned her trust and confidence in me by working with her little bits at a time. That time has built this amazing bond. Today she let me sit up on her bareback and get on and off several times without a fuss. Why am I not doing this with Tango? How is she any different?

Today I let her decide how much was too much and when it felt right for her just by simply letting her be there. No halter, lead rope, nothing. She was there at her own free will. 15 minutes of relaxation and trust building was better than the 15 minutes of fighting with her to get a mount. She gave me something I honestly have never really asked her to give me. Her honest and sincere approval of the mount and just like Penny, it will take time. So, just like Penny, she will have as much time as she needs. I plan to live with her for rest of our lives so we will make the most of it.

Today was such a good day.

Why didn’t I think of that before?

I am sharing my revelation with you now so you don’t miss out on this like I did.

We just “beefed” up our laying hen production. We went from our 4 laying hens in 2018 to 30 laying hens in 2019. This called for a whole new approach to EVERYTHING.

  • A bigger chicken house
  • Easier clean up
  • More water and feed and a better management of that
  • More nesting boxes (and ones that they will actually use)
  • A bigger, taller outdoor aviary for them where they are protected from Ravens, Owls, Fox, Coyotes, and everything else

So, what my BIG revelation?????????

A roosting bar over a sand box

Clean up works like this: kitty litter scooper, bucket, no more poop.

You can thank me now or later on when you install one in your chicken house.

And your birds will thank you too since they LOVE rolling around and scratching at sand.

 

The Fox and Crow Farm Store

Have I mentioned that THIS IS THE YEAR!!!????

  1. This is the year we open our Farm Store right here on the farm
  2. This is the year we offer our Online Store, open 24/7
  3. This is the year we are selling our farm raised meats, eggs and goodies to YOU
  4. This is the year we are offering HOME DELIVERY!!!
  5. This is the year of the FOXBOX

When, you ask?

Well, when we get through the red tape of licensing, insurance, labeling and taxes. We are just weeks away from our Grand Opening!!!! But, that wont stop me from sharing our farm store page with you now.

CHECK OUT OUR STORE, CLICK HERE

Jared and I have been raising our free range, free foraging and grass fed hogs for several years now but this year we will be offering our pork cuts directly to you. All USDA packaged and with the option of Smoked cuts and thick cut bacon.

We have 30 laying hens going into production so we can ensure you will never have to buy commercially raised eggs from the grocery store ever again.

We have free range meat birds pecking away at the grass, bugs and enjoying the sun while stretching their wings on our farm ready to provide you with the healthiest and most delicious chicken.

Have you been watching all of our BBQ sauces, BBQ Dry Rubs and recipes? Our Soap Bars? Our dog treats, our horse cookies…?????????? Yes, you guessed it!!! Those will soon be for sale through our farm store.

And whats this about HOME DELIVERY???? ……… Ok, so we have a few secrets we aren’t ready to reveal just yet, but soon. All I can say is: FOXBOX

Heres what you need to know:

  1. Follow uS and Watch for Updates
  2. Buy from us and Help Support your Local Farmers
  3. Share our Page and our message with your friends and family members
  4. Love yourself, your body and mind, and take care of Mother Earth. We will and we do <3

 

 

Farm Made Flock Block, Chicken Suet

Want a healthy, fun, boredom buster idea for your chickens?

Why not try a farm made Chicken Suet!

Now, I happen to be making my Flock Block from the left over suet when I boiled down my pig fat to make lard. I am using the lard for my soap bars. I don’t expect you to have several pounds of pig flake and back fat in your freezer. I also don’t anticipate that you were boiling the fat down to make lard for soap bars. (If you are, you are in the right place my friend!)

So, if you don’t have pounds of fat what will you be using? Kitchen scratches and bacon grease!! You heard me right, trim that fat and gristle off your meat and save it. Drain that bacon grease into a jar and save it. Once you have enough to fill a pot half way, you have just enough to get started.

Here’s what you need:

  • Large Pot
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Strainer/Sifter (I use a flour sifter. The smaller the holes the better)
  • Grease/Fat
  • Chicken Scratch/Seeds/Sunflower Seeds
  • Peanut Butter
  • Plastic or Pyrex food storage containers

So let’s get started!!!

1) Fill your large pot with about 3″ of water on the bottom Your pot should never be more than half full after you have added all of your water and grease/fat!!!!! Grab a large pot to be safe!

2) Add about 1 tbsp of Salt per 1lb of grease you are boiling

3) Trim the fat and gristle down to small pieces (I freeze my fat to make it easier to cut up) The smaller the pieces the more fat you will cook out of it.

4) Add your fat and grease BEFORE you begin to heat up the water.

Now this is a good time to talk about safety. Hopefully we all know what happens when we heat water and oil!!!! Don’t overheat your water to the point of boiling!!! Don’t ever let your oil splatter! And don’t ever let your oil boil over into an open flame!!!! Seriously guys, this is science. Be safe!!!

5) Ok, so now that we have some warm water the grease should be starting to thin out, you should see less and less clumps of fat. Stir to break down the oil and aft. You will still see chunks of meat and gristle. That is fine, we will sift these out.

6) I let mine heat for about 30 mins per lb fat. By now it should be a watery consistency with clumps of junk floating around.

7) Grab a large container or large mason jar and your strainer/sifter. We are about to strain out the liquid from the clumpy stuff.

8) It’s time to slowly pour the water/oil/clumpy stuff into our jar or container. It might take a few pours since your sifter will start to fill up with stuff. Dump that clumpy stuff into a bowl (We are going to be using that too)

9) Let your oil/water mixture rest until its at room temperature. Once its cooled, you can place it in your refrigerator.

10) OK, now it’s tomorrow and you are opening your fridge and looking at your wonderful creation of LARD or TALLOW!!! Congrats!!!!! You did it!!!!!! The water should be on the bottom and the fat on top. Grab a big spoon and starting spooning it into a pot. Pour out the water that’s in the bottom. We no longer need that.

11) Grab that extra clumpy stiff that we sifted out yesterday and throw that in there.

12) Heat your pot on low. You just want to melt the fat, not boil or burn it!

13) Now you can add your peanut butter, seeds, etc to your SUET.

14) Mix it until it starts to feel like thick dough

15) Spoon your SUET into the small containers and let them reach room temp.

16) Cool them in your fridge so they are easy to handle as a block and wrap them in wax paper, lay them on a cookie sheet to freeze them or place them into baggies.

17) I like to freeze mine. It’s a nice cool treat in the summer time and will not spoil.

Pork Liver Jerky Treats, For the Dog :)

I love my dogs. I love feeding them good quality tasty food.

I also HATE wasting… anything. As a farmer I am constantly working to preserve my food whether grown on a tree or in the garden. I preserve my leftovers after I have cooked a nice meal. I even save the animal pelts and tan them for crafts around the house.

We sent a couple of our pigs to the butcher last year and I asked the butcher if he could package up the fat, livers and other organs for me. He didn’t even hesitate and simply said “Sure!”

The Benefits of Liver for Your Dog

Liver is a nutrient-rich organ meat that most dogs readily eat. Liver can provide your dog with protein, fat and vitamin A, all of which help them stay healthy if offered in moderation. Liver is also a good source of copper, iron, niacin, phosphorus and zinc. It provides many B vitamins, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, and essential amino acids your dog needs from their diet to keep them healthy.

Liver can be an important component of a raw food diet for your dog, too. Be sure to use other organ meats, such as the heart, the kidneys or the brain, to give your dog a wider variety of nutrients that he needs for good health.

How did I make my Jerky?

I slice up my livers very thin!! The thinner, the drier which means it will last longer (less moisture.)

I like to marinade the slices in fresh Oregano. Really its just to mask the awful smell while they are dehydrating. I rinse all of the excess blood, toss in the Oregano and let it sit in the fridge for about 6 hours.

Next I lay them on my dryer racks. You can also broil them in the oven.

The drier they are the longer they will last. I dehydrate at 160 degrees F for 9-12 hours. I store mine in a cloth sack in a cabinet that is safe from mice. I do not like to use the fridge or glass jars since they can absorb moisture.

Shelf life can be up to 2 years if stored correctly.

The Day Penny Came Home

Tango and ErinSeptember 24, 2016 was the day. It was the day that our new filly, Penny, would be coming home to live on the farm with us. It was a day I will never forget.

Penny was pulled from the livestock auction by owner of Equine Rescue Network (ERN), Janine. Janine had seen this little filly at a previous auction house and knew this was her time to give this filly a new chance at life. She “saved” her on May 26, 2016 and loaded her up on a trailer and made the trip back to her home in MA.

Penny was sick and needed to be quarantined but was finally ready to make her trip even more north to Chester, NH. There she was, waiting for her big chance and that day finally came on September 24th 2016.

I had visited with Penny a few times before the big move. I brought Jared to meet her and we both felt a special bond to this little girl. She was very curious and seemed to like to follow us around. We had about a month and a half to prepare her paddock, run-in shed and invest in everything she would need.

We had nothing to start with. Her paddock was previously a dense pine Forrest that we had cut. We had stumps, roots and rocks to move around. We agreed on the placement of her run-in shed and started working on the fence. It was a lot of work in a short time but the motivation to bring her home gave us momentum.

Since Penny was my first horse I had to consider what I needed to buy. Halters, lead ropes, brushes, grain, water buckets, etc. With winter approaching we needed a jacket, heaters for the water trough, etc. It was a big list to consider but we took our time and pushed through.

Finally, the morning of 9/24/2016. I couldn’t sleep that night. I was dreaming about Penny and the excitement was uncontrollable. I wanted Jared to come with me but he had to stay behind to do some last minute things with the fencing. I drove to Chester alone, about an hour drive from my house. My mind was racing. This was the day I was waiting for all of my life.

When I got there no one was around. The barn manager wasn’t there, my horse transporter was still on her way. I decided to get Penny’s halter and get her on a lead rope and put her in the empty paddock so we can load her up quickly. I had to find her halter and lead rope first. Once I located them I opened the gate and was quickly rushed by a herd of mares, geldings, colts, and filly’s. They all were sniffing, snorting and crowding around me. Then this enormous lead mare comes in to the circle and for a moment I got scared. She started kicking and rearing warning the herd to back off and let her investigate. I found my escape and jumped through the fence and was out of there. Penny was busy eating hay in the corner and she was just too far me to go in there and get her without the hassle of the herd.

I stood patiently by the gate and started calling to Penny. She finally picked up her head and started walking towards me. Oddly enough none of the other horses followed, just Penny. I left her have a sniff on my hand and opened the gate and she walked right through the gate. Just like that! I was in shock. This little filly was coming home with me and she made that easy. It was like she knew.

Once the horse transporter showed up I let her have the lead rope and up Penny went into the trailer and just like that we were on the road home. We walked her into her new paddock and dropped some hay on the ground for her to forage through. It was the day our home became a farm.

Penny in her new paddock

Penny meeting Wayah for the first time
Penny meeting Wayah for the first time

Penny with her new leather halter

Getting Back in the Saddle

Erin on her new horseI got thrown off a spooked horse in a full run back to barn. I was trying to slow him down and he decided he needed to dump me and went into a bronc and I went flying. I landed on my head (wearing a helmet) but smacked my chin to my chest, pulled a muscle in the front of my neck and sustained some bruising and landed on my lower back. I laid on the ground unable to feel my legs and waited for some pain to kick in so I knew I was ok but hurt. I was ok! A very bruised tailbone, lower back pain and bruising for weeks and unable to comfortably walk, bend over, and move my head for a few days.

This all happened about 1 week before my wedding day. My now husband was not thrilled and forbid me from riding again before the wedding, like I could anyways.

The accident was not on my horse. It was was my friends horse. So I tried to get “back in the saddle” with my trusted steed. I got up and just sat there for about 2 minutes waiting for my heart rate to slow down. I was terrified!!! She felt taller than I remember, she could bolt at any moment, I felt vulnerable and I had to get down.

I did a fun 8 mile ride with her and we had a great time. But every time I went to get back on I felt scared.

One ride, my horse just didn’t trust me going down that trail. I had to get off. I didn’t have the ability to push her forward like I used to. In my mind she would bolt and run off to the house (a good 2 miles away) and I would be dumped off and injured again. The thought consumed me and I walked her instead.

I finally decided to get a trainer with a lesson horse in an arena and start all over again. I have had two lessons and each time I get stronger. Having someone on the ground to watch me and remind me to relax is important right now. I feel safe, I feel comfortable and I feel that I am learning to be a better rider. And not just for me but for my horse as well.

Every rider will fall eventually and some can just get right back on (I used to be that person) but when you have so much to lose and the pain was too great, you have to decide when YOU are ready.

I will be ready again soon and my horse will be waiting for me.

Horses, horses, and more horses…

Was another nice horsey day (we just love this nice weather!)

Tango and I went for a long walk/jog again. She is getting used to our trails. Her head is lower and lower and she is staying at a safe distance and pace at my side. We walked up the driveway as Jared drove in. She was not a fan of a moving car behind her. We survived and never stopped moving. Im thinking a little walk on the road is our next adventure so we can get used to cars. I deliberately took her to the edge of the woods when the dogs were running through there. She was spooked by that on our first walk and now it “ain’t no thang.”

So Penny, my adorable filly, is super jealous that Tango is getting all of this attention so I decided to take her out for a walk. I just love her. She is such a baby compared to Tango so we do everything in baby steps. Smaller circles, smaller spaces. Then she gets lots of love since she deserves it.

Then there is Sancho, the trouble making pony! So this guy “knows it all” and has a little ‘tude about everything. I have been reading a lot about clicker trick-training and “at will” training for these super smarty pants. So, just me and Sancho and a short crop for safe distance and we “cluck” (my mouth sounds) … “walk-on” and there he is, strutting himself like a pro. I take a 90 degree turn to the right and boom… there he is. Never missed a step. I turn to look at him and he waits and follows my lead at every step. I think we are on to something here. Could he be a true “trick pony”!!!????

I am adding a Go-Pro to my list of needs at the farm so I can video our sessions. I would love to share the progress all of us are making.

Almost 3 hours of horse play time and I only came in because it was getting too dark outside.