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Showing posts from September, 2015

My summer essentials for raising kids on the farm

It is officially summer and mother nature is reminding us with the 100 degree weather that is so graciously here. With summer comes lots of outside time for the kids. Raising kids on the farm takes summer to a whole new level. There is just dirt everywhere, dirt in my house, dirt in the diapers, dirt places I didn't know dirt could go. It is just something I learn to deal with and I have also learned to hire a good cleaning lady.
But, with summer comes endless hours of fun and family time. We spend hours outside, in the fields, walking through the orchards, picking up parts, running down equipment and taking meals to the farm during those late work nights.
In the midst of all the craziness, there are certain things I just can't live without. Things that make life so much easier. Things that I have learned to love. I created a list of my summer essentials for raising kids on the farm. These have been some of my favorites during the last four years.

I have two kids, born during…

Farmers are gamblers

Farmers are gamblers. We all gamble every day and hope that we are profitable at the end of the year. We gamble with mother nature, politics, environmental changes, natural disasters, life events and the list could go on. There are a number of factors that go into making our farm successful that we have no control over. Water is the biggest gamble lately. But farmers still wake up every morning and tend to their fields with the same aspirations of making a living with a successful crop.

Almond farmers are no different. Our crop is very unique and depending on where you farm throughout the state, your challenges vary. Some farmers are doing better this year and have less water issues. Some farmers are hurting from water and have more challenges in their areas.

On our farm this year, our crop looks light. On our farm and in our area, the crop looks down roughly 15-20%.  Most varieties seemed to have fewer nuts than average this year. The amount of meat when compared to the hull and she…

Why California grows so many almonds

Over the past several months, there has been quite the finger pointing and blame on agriculture for water use. Farmers have been depicted as an evil villain. Almonds specifically are being targeted and shamed. I find it odd that farmers are being blamed for water use. Not just because I am a farmer, but because I am a consumer. And last time I checked, so was everyone else. We all consume the food that farmers grow. But instead of thanking the farmers for growing our food, we are blaming them for using too much water. Suddenly, everyone is now an expert on farming and think they all know best on what inputs crops need.

In most articles and stories I have read over the past several months, farmers aren't even given a chance to defend ourselves or provide our side of the story. Honestly, I am tired of defending myself and why almond farmers use water. Everything uses water, all food needs water to grow, all people need water to live, all organisms need water to thrive. We all may be…

Almond Meltaway Cookies

These adorable little boys agreed to be guest bloggers for these amazing almond meltaway cookies they baked. I happen to be friends with their aunt who is an avid baker and lover of all things almonds. No, I would say that is an understatement, she is a quite the expert baker. She is known for baking cakes just because or fixing up a plate of macaroons on a random night. She loves to be in the kitchen. So, when I saw that she was teaching her nephews how to bake and to use almonds as the ingredients, I just had to feature these cuties!

The boys loved to make these cookies but they might have enjoyed decorating them even more! These tasty cookies were decorated with brightly colored almond frosting, blanched and whole almonds as well as the ever-popular "we need more!" rainbow sprinkles! Because let's be honest, we all need more sprinkles in our lives!

These cookies have great flavor thanks to the almond extract in the cookie dough as well as frosting, making them extra …