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Summertime, and we’re still having newborns!

Yep, when most everyone else is done having babies around here, we’re still kidding, and one of our hens and our duck are setting with one chick hatched so far.

A while ago, our chickens discovered one of our secrets… their fence had rotted out at the base. If they wiggled a bit, they could go walk about. First there were a couple, then a few, and finally more than half the flock.

While it was fun to watch them interact with the birds in our front yard, go over to the sheep, cow, and goat pens, Mom soon became irritated as they kept “helping her” with the landscaping. Unfortunately, their favorite work was usually done where she had recently raked… kicking all that soil back onto the walkway.

So, Cindy went to work fixing the fence. Because the chickens were mostly smart enough to return  to the coop at  night,

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Posted in Around the farm, Goats
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Reflections on Competing Online for Grants

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.

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Posted in Agvocating, Cajeta Project
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FedEx Small Business Grant Contest… We’re in!

We really need your votes, daily. Please be sure to share with your friends, too.

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Let’s talk Traditional Mexican Cajeta, aka Caramel Sauce

Have you ever put something into your mouth, closed your eyes, rolled your tongue around, felt the silkiness of the sauce, inhaled the delicate aroma of Mexican Vanilla, finally swallowed, and immediately licked your chops, waiting for the next bite?

Yeah, it’s that good!

Here’s the lowdown. Our Traditional Mexican Cajeta (pronounced ca-hay-ta) is a traditional milk-based caramel sauce. It is traditionally made using fresh goat milk (we milk our own goats), cane sugar (or evaporated cane juice), Mexican Vanilla, Ceylon Cinnamon, Sea salt, and baking soda. These are the exact ingredients we use.

While we call it Cajeta (the Mexican translation of caramel made with goat milk), it is simply a goat-based confection that may be used as a topping for many different things. Starting with “straight from the jar”, which is also the most addicting way to enjoy it, you can top ice cream,

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Posted in Cajeta Project
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Cajeta Project Update

Bet ya’ thought I was too busy to make Cajeta. Never gonna happen as Mom is hooked on the gooey sweet stuff.

The recipe is pretty much perfected for one gallon batches. Once it’s tested for Water Activity by Utah State University, I’ll be able to concentrate on raising money to build the commercial kitchen.

Going from 1/2 gallon to 1 gallon batches was quite interesting. It’s taken considerable effort to discover the proper times to add and remove the cinnamon sticks, add the vanilla, and then  cook to the proper consistency. Without serious technical equipment, I have to rely on sight, smell, how the mixture drips off the spatula, and the temperature. Being at better than 5000 ft altitude has played a significant role, as water boils around 202 degrees.

So, I am currently developing an “Indegogo” project to help with some initial equipment and the cost of the product testing and label design and approval.

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Posted in Cajeta Project
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  • Goats helping photographer
    Hey, we'd love to help you take your pictures.
  • Coco's little calf born July 30, 2014
    Coco's little calf born July 30, 2014.
  • Cindy feeding Chaffhaye
  • working in the kitchen
    Bev recording milk weights, Shari stirring the Cajeta
  • The first two little doelings.
    The first two little doelings.
  • Mom with Thor
    Mom is cuddling our new buckling, Thor.
  • cargo trailer
    Our Farmer's Market cargo trailer.
  • Hand digging trench
    Shari pitches in and digs up broken water line.

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