Today we did something new – we traveled out to Capay Valley to visit Full Belly Farms. As you may know, Aaron and I want to retire on a farm. We don’t plan to mass produce or anything like that, but we want to grow what we need and raise animals. Today solidified that desire even more.
Full Belly Farm is an organic farm that has been family owned and operated for 26 years. They have a CSA program and host several events throughout the year. Today’s farm tour was to debut the baby lambs that were born over the past 6 weeks.
We arrived to a warm welcome after an hour and fifteen minute drove from our house. We had some time to walk around the property and visit some of the animals.
After a quick introduction to the owners and staff, we hopped on the tractors and headed out to visit the farm.
The first stop was to see the chickens. Ry, the son of two of the owners created a system for allowing the chickens to roam free. They have mobile pens that they also use for the other animals. We got to go right in the pen and play with the chickens. I was even able to chase them around, pick them up and also pick eggs out of the pen.
Do I look like a future farmer?
Next up was the greenhouse and to see other sheep. It was so cute to see all the mini plants waiting to be planted. It was like a vegetable NICU, we had to be very careful!
Then we got to what we had all been waiting for – the babies! Full Belly had 137 babies born this year and when we arrived, two more had JUST been born. I mean literally as we were walking up to the pasture. All of the farm staff was telling us how lucky we were to be there for that. We got to watch them steady themselves and learn to nurse. It was pretty amazing.
Carrot soup, kale, salad with celery root, the best bread, roasted potatoes and a yummy carrot cake muffin!
I was so happy all day. It was so amazing to spend the day on a working farm and learn how it all happens. As Ry was explaining the processes they go through, it all made so much sense. You plant the crops, harvest them, let the sheep graze on what’s left, they fertilize the soil by just eating and pooping and then you do it all over again. There is obviously more to it than that, but Full Belly Farm illustrates the right way to farm. These are the farmers we should be supporting. If we demand this kind of quality, that is what we will get.
SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL FARMERS! Take part in a CSA, shop at the farmers market or visit the farms directly.