Saturday, October 08, 2016

We Bought a Farm: Chicken Processing Day Complete

Here is Abigail at 8:30am this morning when we got started processing our 141 birds!

We were so blessed to have NINE grown-ups and about 3.5 children helping today!!!

We were so blessed that Dennis and Cindy joined us from a neighboring farm (and their teenage daughter!) They wanted to learn the process and process a few of their own birds too. 

In addition, Rick, who goes to church with us, stuck around for the long haul. What a huge help he was as we bagged the birds in the garage! 

We also had our two WWOOFers (and friends!) Shelby and Mary Ann here as well! Mary Ann actually stepped in and helped JB on his table (no small task) and Shelby took over quality control. They were both amazing.

And our kids? They were ROCK STARS. Isaac, who is usually not a fan of chicken processing day, found his calling. He LOVES organizing, and we put him on the freezers and getting the birds organized, and he was in heaven. Everyone, even Hannah, helped. The kiddos worked from the very first minute catching chickens until we put the last of them in the freezer.

And of course I can't forget Grampa and Grama. Grampa ran the "killing station" that no one wants to be at and Grama helped with kids and then helped break down birds at the end. (We decided to take 40 birds we are keeping for ourselves and break them down on the spot so we could do more with parts of chickens this year instead of whole chickens.)

Here's Shelby doing quality control. She was AMAZING at this part of the process and truly just a gift to us. She not is a WWOOFer here, but she was my friend in the Azores, and she will leave an even better friend!

And a fun pic of Sidge who took a break from catching chickens to pose with a praying mantis:

This is by far the hardest day we put in on the farm. And we do it two days a year. Today we did it in EIGHT HOURS! A record!! our birds weighed on average 4.5 pounds -- a little smaller than our 5 pound average earlier this summer (which we think was due to the drought we've been in.)

So glad it's DONE until the summer of 2017!! Believe it or not, I only have about 33 more birds I can sell out of the 300 we processed. They are going like hot cakes!

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