Pleasant Valley Farm

  (Tionesta, Pennsylvania)
Real Family Farming in Tionesta, PA
[ Member listing ]

High Speed

It's spring!  So much is going on!  Babies are here...we've got calves, lambs, and chicks, with lots more chicks to come, as well as turkey poults.  The garden is plowed, but there is much work to be done to get it ready for planting, and we're also looking to plow more and put in some field corn for next winter's animal feed.  I'm tending tiny tomato seedlings, with plenty more sprouts to start, and we've planted salad greens and spring onions in the greenhouse, and the garlic, oregano, chives and other perennial herbs are green and growing.  The pasture & hay fields are finally turning green, especially with the thunderstorms we've had recently.  

But here in Northwest Pennsylvania,  spring swings from glorious to snowy and back again more than once, so it's good to have plenty of indoor projects when it's too wet or cold to get much done outside.  While I never lack things to do, I'm really excited to have gotten a major project done in the past week, before the weather turns nice for good and my inside time dwindles.  

A few weeks ago, we were finally able to upgrade to a high speed internet connection.  Before that, I had been doing all my  blogging, website maintenance, everything, via a dial-up connection. High speed capability finally came down our road, and so I've been using the last indoor days to do quite a bit of work online.  It's so much easier now!  While we have had a small online store for a year or so now, I haven't been happy with it.  I used Etsy as a host, and truthfully, I think people go there more to look for ideas than to shop, but at the time seemed like a good choice.  I decided it was time, however, to move on, and have been working really hard the past week or so to open shop on our own website!

 I  am so very excited to announce our all-new, virtual farm stand is now open for business! We now offer some of our wonderful canned goods, as well as my handmade jewelry (some featuring feathers from our own peacocks) and the stained glass items I've been making recently, like suncatchers and candle holders. But I'm most excited about listing some of Dan's hand-forged metal work he does in the blacksmith shop.  I've been trying to convince him that his things are wonderful for a couple years now, but up to this point he always thought that he wasn't good enough to be selling his work.  I'm excited that he has sold a few things, and we now have listed things like gate latches & door handles, a cowboy-style dinner bell, and a beautiful wall-mounted pot rack, with more items to come as he makes them, and we'll also be featuring his work at the farm stand when we reopen.

We hope you'll take a look around our all-new store, at http://pleasantvalleyfarm.weebly.com/shop-online.html.  Payment is safe & secure through PayPal.  And please feel free to give us your feedback on the look & setup of the site, or things you'd like to see there!   

 
 

The Canner is Bubbling Again

I love this time of year in the garden, everything is so plentiful!  We had our first sweet corn this weekend and a few ripe tomatoes as well.  The plants don't look great, but they don't have the killer blight and the tomatoes are finally turning red! It must be the sunshine, which has finally reappeared. As I type, I'm keeping an eye on my canner as I am making salsa with the leftovers from the market- tomatoes, onions, and hot peppers.  Growing up, no one in my family canned, but I taught myself a few summers ago and I really enjoy it.  I love knowing what's really in my food and being able to control the amout of chemicals, salt and sugar that goes into whatever I'm eating.  I love trying new recipies, and I love finding ones that use the herbs and vegetables I have just out my back door! I do make some other things, like mustards, that I need to buy most of the ingredients for, but they are so much better than anything store bought!  I enjoy canning so much that I have started putting some of my sauces and other things for sale at the stand.  If you stop by, along with 2 kinds of mustards I have flavored vinegar, a sweet & sour dipping sauce, hot pepper jelly, dilled green beans and this weekend, salsa!

 Opening the stand has made us so busy, getting laid off was really a blessing in disguise.  People remember our sausage and we have sold quite a lot of the secret family recipe breakfast sausage.  Dan and I introduced a mild and a hot Italian sausage 2 weeks ago and they were so popular, we're going to have them again this weekend.  So Thursday I'll be busy stuffing sausage and packaging it.  

 Another thing keeping me busy lately is working on the website.  I've added a lot on new pictures of the animals and the stand.  I'm also working on a page with pictures and descriptions of the various polutry we raise, which is taking some time and isn't live yet.  If you'd like to check it out, the address is www.pleasantvalleyfarm.weebly.com.

If you're planning on being in Tionesta for the Rumble on the River Bike Fest, stop by and see us!  We always enjoy meeting the people who follow us online.  And if it isn't too hot, you can meet Puff, our cat who thinks he is the farm stand mascot.  He love to be the greeter and be petted by everyone!  

 
 

Oooh, That Smell...

Although we've been hopeful that the chicken killers are no longer with us, we have been shutting the doors to the coop in the evenings.  On Saturday, we noticed that although  the chickens were safe, one of our Pekin (duck) hens was missing from our little flock. The ducks don't have a pen to be shut into at night, so I was starting to worry about how to keep them safe as well.  On a happy note, she was safe and sound and sitting in a little nest I hadn't noticed in the front yard of the house.  Pekins aren't known for going broody and she gave up sitting on the 5 eggs in a few hours, but after the rancid stink bombs I cleaned out of the Cochin's box, I'm ok with just using the incubator!

We've been trying to proctect the henhouse from any further attacks, so this weekend we put a trap by the door just in case there was still a problem.  We awoke Sunday morning to a horrid smell wafting through the open windows.  SKUNK.  Yep, we caught a skunk and he was not happy about it.  Even after getting rid of the actual animal, the scent lingers.  Not much we could do after the spray but close all the windows in the house, light scented soy candles, and I guess I won't be hanging laundry outside for a few days!

If you'd like to learn a bit more about the farm and see some picture of the critters, please check out our new website at www.pleasantvalleyfarm.weebly.com.  It lists what's currently for sale (with prices), FAQs, and I'm working on descriptions of the animals as well as their pictures.  Be sure to sign the guestbook too!

 
 
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