We’ve competed twice now, following the rules explicitly, only to be passed over for consideration.
In this post, I’m not pointing fingers, or laying blame on anyone, just laying out the facts as we see them.
In the first competition, the winners were young women (it was a women only contest), who are developing high tech companies. What we found curious was that none of these high tech businesses appeared to have any social networks, as determined by zero votes in the Social Media phase of the competition.
In the second, most recent competition, the Social Media phase counted for 25% of the criteria. The remaining criteria was based on your plan for using the money, how you determine success, etc. To me, if you got more votes than your competitors, your “social score” should be higher. I guess our other scores were much lower.
We’re very proud of the fact that we are “seniors” who each have retired after long careers. We bring a host of skills to our business endeavors. We write plans for each of the paths we choose to take.
For example, we have an overall “farm plan”. We use that plan, really a vision, to keep us on track for what we are doing, what we want to do in the future, and most importantly, what we must avoid doing.
We have a written plan for our produce production. We used that plan to obtain a federal grant for our two hoop houses. That plan is continually updated. We are able to measure our success and failures by that plan.
We have a plan for what we are doing with the various species of animals. We have sheep, so we can sell exceptional quality lamb to the local market. We have a beef cow, who provides beef for our freezer. We have chickens, who provide eggs, which we sell at the local markets. We have ducks for our own enjoyment, with a plan to hatch babies (using surrogate chickens) and then sell the baby ducks. We have goats for our Traditional Mexican Cajeta, as well as meat for the local markets. We have an aquaponics system plan, which we use as a demonstration project, and also to produce strawberries, with the goal of selling berries to the local markets.
This year, we’re adding bees. Again, we have a plan. We need additional pollinators in our gardens. Bees are good for the environment. They are a link for us in sustainable farming.
Over the years, even before we each moved to the desert, we’ve created our networks of wonderful friends, cheerleaders, and supporters. When combined, they number in the thousands. Each and every person is as valuable as if they were the only friends we have.
So, our dear social network, it’s up to you and your friends to help us with the boot straps. We’re into the very last phase of our commercial kitchen project. The primary use of this kitchen is to make our Traditional Mexican Cajeta. We’ll use, exclusively, our own goat milk. Cindy and I milk the goats twice a day. I make the Cajeta, which is a very time-consuming process.
We’re discovering the market for our cajeta is far greater than what we anticipated. The good news is that we’re ahead of our plan for bringing does on line. We have at least 9 bred, and due to kid soon. The triplets may be pregnant too, which would give us a dozen goats to milk. The bad news is most of them will only give us about 1/2 gallon of milk per day this year, as they are first year mamas.
That is probably good news as it’s still a lot of milk to make into the cajeta. More milk means more jars, more labels, etc. We’re confident we can sell it all. It’s simply a matter of cash flow. And, friends, that is why were running the Indgogo project. We need more stuff than in the original plan.
Please, we ask that you let your head talk to your heart, and your hands reach for your credit card. Make that donation. Anything from $5 is posted, and I’m adding perks every once in a while.