Handled With Care
It's finally here! Our website! Our blog! Well as I write this, its only the blog, and it's mostly a blank page waiting for me to fix it. The name of my farm--and this website--is Handled With Care, because all of the animals, produce and handmade goods on the farm are carefully and lovingly prepared and handled. We are two brand new farmers, two best friends--one from Southeast Missouri (K/Me) and the other from Boston, Mass (A). At first I simply wanted a handful of chickens as pets and for the occasional egg. Then A wanted Bunnies. Then someone suggested we keep guinea fowl for tick control, then I decided Turkeys would be fun. After ample research, we ordered the birds--15 Australorps, 5 BBS Silkies and 15 guinea fowl in assorted colors. They were to arrive on the last day of June. In the meantime, a local weekly market featuring livestock, produce and yard-sale-like items provided us with our other poultry, our three beautiful Narragansett Turkeys. After a few ups and downs with our first rabbits, we finally managed to gather a New Zealand Red and five decent Lionheads.

A few weeks later, we had a brooder full of chicks--14 Australorp chicks, 15 guineas (2 lavender, 5 pearl and 8 white) and 5 tiny silkies--and we had eight rabbits after adding two New Zealand Whites. The chihuahua and two cats were puzzled at best, and one cat camped outside of the bathroom--where the brooder was--for the first week. Emergencies abounded, a strange-acting Silkie, a pasty guinea butt, constantly putting up tarps and taking them down to keep the three baby turkeys dry but not overheated on stormy summer days. It was traumatic, moreso for us than the animals, but we managed to pull through. The chickens grew, and so did our rabbitry, adding three beautiful Lionheads and one quirky little Dwarf Hotot doe named Cleopatra.

Our next big step was getting the fully-feathered chicks and keets out of our bathroom and into their outdoor coop my uncle was building for us. A lot of screaming and flapping and our birds--minus two guineas and plus five Silkies--were happy in their large pen. A massive road trip to the state fair brought us three more Dwarf Hotots and our rabbitry was complete.

We handmade seven cages and reporposed a gigantic dog kennel to cart four chickens, two turkeys and six rabbits to the County Fair and left with five blue ribbons and six reds--poor ugly teenage guineas didn't place, and the Turkeys got second only because they had no competition. Now, we've found a small Farmer's Market to sell a few handmade items and extra livestock. They were very welcoming and part of the reason we finished this website and started a blog. A and myself will be making blog entries and will sign our posts accordingly. Hopefully it will always be good news!

10/3/2011 11:25:44 am

I love your new website Kristy and Ashley. It was so nice to meet you at the Farmers Market in Doniphan, MO! We are so glad that you have joined us as vendors and look forward to many wonderful Saturdays working with you.

I love your photos...your bunnies are adorable, as are your chickens, guineas, well, not so much but hey they do serve an important purpose here in SE Missouri.

Congratulations on getting your enterprise rolling! I'll be following your awesome success and someday I can say "I was the first to ever comment on their now world-famous website"!! :-)


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