Skip to main content

Country Christmas

I once again decided this year to participate in the Country Christmas exchange. I participated last year and it was fun to connect with new agriculture advocates. Getting to know other bloggers in the agriculture industry is exciting to see what drives others and how they continue doing it year after year. Helpful tips and tricks of trade help me to continue on this path.



When my package arrived I was so excited. My secret Santa came all the way from Nebraska. Naomi blogs over at Circle L Ranch. She really did her homework and found some great stuff for me.

First off, she gave me a packet of chili seasoning and ladle perfect for dishing out homemade chili. Well in the winter I pretty much make chili about once a week, in fact I made it for dinner last night. Needless to say these have already been put to good use.

Next up, She gave me a great gratitude devotion journal. My 2017 was filled with faith testing life challenges so I really needed this. I've already used the first two w…

Fair time, walnuts and family farming

Growing up memorial weekend was never a time to go to beach, or the lake, or hang out with friends. It was always a busy fair weekend. The week leading up to and the weekend of Memorial Day has always been Silver Dollar Fair in Chico. My sister and myself grew up showing sheep at this fair, and this year it was time for my little niece to show her first lamb at the fair. I guess that means, she isn't little anymore! So I packed up my little almond farmer and we rode the train up north for a weekend of fair time, walnuts and family farming.


My niece did a great job and placed 3rd in showmanship and market. She is a natural showman and has great potential of being an even better showman with more practice and hardwork. We spent a full day at the fair watching her show her lamb and then another even longer day at auction waiting for her to auction off her lamb. As I did my first year, there were a few tears but she still has a breeding ewe at home for her to still care for. With as much care and love she gave to her lambs as she was raising them over the past 4 months, it is no wonder she was a little upset to be saying goodbye. But in the end, she learned some great life lessons on responsibility, taking ownership, money management and caring for a living animal. She was already talking about how excited she was to pick out her next lamb this coming weekend for the next fair only 3 months away.

In between days at the fair, my little almond farmer and I had to take the opportunity to share some time with my walnut farmer father. We went around the home place and checked on his walnuts together. My little almond farmer was fascinated by the sprinklers. My dad's walnut orchards are irrigated on permanent solid set sprinklers. The pipes are buried under ground and the sprinkler stand and nozzles are above ground and rotate in circles to irrigate the trees. This is a common irrigation method for trees and one widely used in Northern California. The irrigation pump had just been turned on, so we had to check the sprinklers to ensure they were all working properly. Sprinklers can get clogged with debris and need to be cleaned out, or they can get stuck and need to be adjusted. This was a fun opportunity to show my son how my dad irrigates.
3 generations checking irrigation

solid set sprinkler

beautiful walnut crop

It truly was a family affair that day. My dad, me and my little almond farmer out in the orchard together. That is what family farms are all about. According to the USDA, 97% of the 2.1 million farms in the US are family farms.  I am happy to say I grew up on one of those and I am happy to still be a part of one today. Family farms are vital to our country and our children's future. It was growing up on the farm that taught me responsibility, hard work and love for agriculture. It was raising livestock and working on the farm that made me who I am today. Going home, even for just a weekend, reignites the true love for agriculture that I was raised on and am raising my son on.

Until Next Time,
Almond Girl Jenny

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Almond by-products

When people think of almond uses they tend to just think of using the almond meat. Almonds have multiple by-products actually. When almonds are processed at the huller the almond meat is separated from the hull and shell. The hulls, shells and hash are also sold and used.

Almond hulls are the green out most layer of the almond while on the tree. The hull is what splits and starts the countdown to harvest. Once the almond has dried in the field, the hull also dries and begins to separate from the almond. At the huller, they remove the hulls and stock pile them until sold. Almond hulls are sold for animal feed, most commonly dairy feed. The hulls actually add nutrition to the animals diet and aid in healthy milk production. Growing up on my family's farm, we used the hulls to feed our breeding sheep. It was cheaper than grain, helped to add nutrition to the animal diet and while filled them up faster.

Almond shells are the hard layer between the hull and the almond meat. …

Thankful for my family

With all the hate, crime and devastation in the world these days I have found myself in need of love and joy. To me, November is the perfect month to reflect on what we are thankful for. I think we all need to stop and take time to appreciate what we have. There is too much negativity to sometimes find the light, as I have written about before. So this month, I challenge you all to stop what you are doing and take some time to be thankful and appreciate the world around you.
To help me spread some love and happiness I thought I would do a fun thankful Thursday giveaway post every week this month of November. Every week, I will post something I am thankful for and challenge you to think of something you are thankful for. The idea is to appreciate what we have and stop thinking of all the negative that surrounds us. Thanksgiving and Christmas are happy holidays were we should be thankful and not be dwelling on negative things.
Every week this month, I will share something I am thankful fo…

Almond varieties

Did you know there are over 30 different varieties of almonds grown commercially?! All have their own unique purpose, size, and shape. Most almond farmers, have multiple varieties in the same orchard, the most popular being nonpareil. Nonpareil is the prettiest almond, most widely produced and comes with the biggest return back to the grower. But we can't all farm nonpareils, they need to be pollinated somehow. Almonds typically need at least two varieties in an orchard because the almond flower cannot pollinate itself like other fruit trees can. We learned about that with the almond bloom and bee blog!! So we have pollinator varieties that complement other varieties and offer their own unique purpose. I am going to outline a few of the more widely grown varieties for you, but feel free to check out The Almond Board of California's full guide.


Nonpareil has the most uses and purposes of any other nut. It can be used in raw form, blanched, processed or anything you …