Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Never Thought We'd Do That!

This is the first installment of the new MHF blog category "Never Thought We'd Do That". You see, since we moved to the farm 5 years ago, there have been many things we've done that we never imagined we'd have (or want) to do. I thought it would be fun to start sharing those things with you.

Today, Brett cleaned our chimney for the first time. It took 3 tries moving the ladder to different areas around the house until we found a spot that he could (somewhat safely) climb atop the roof and get to the chimney.  But alas, he had success!

After cleaning the chimney from the top, he unscrewed the bottom of the chimney pipe behind the wood stove and cleaned out the debris.

We purchased a chimney cleaning brush and poles at Lowe's last winter. The poles come in 4 foot sections that screw together and the brush screws on the end. I think the whole package cost us about $70 - less than it would cost to have our chimney cleaned one time.

It's a messy job, but it only took about an hour. Now our chimney is clean and safe for another season of warm crackling fires.
Debris from the chimney

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Llamas, Goats & Jesus?

I just closed the store for the day, put another log on the fire and sat down to watch Sense & Sensibility while I work on our 2013 marketing plan. Sounds like a fun Saturday night, huh? Lest I sound like too much of a bore, last night was fun.

We took a llama and 3 goats to Clear Creek Bible College for their live nativity. No, there was no llama at the birth of Jesus. Llamas are indigineous to South America, not the Middle East. However, it is hard to find a camel in this area, so our llamas "stand in" occasionally. No one seemed to mind. Beatrice was the hit of the evening, but she stood still and quiet during the presentation so as not to steal the show from Jesus.
A Shepherd with the goats & llama, Beatrice

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

How We Name Our Goats

Recently, we decided to start giving our new goats biblical names. This year we gave our goats names beginning with the letter “A”; next year we’ll do “B” and continue going on down the alphabet.

Since Violet was the first of our goats to give birth this year, we named her silver baby boy Adam – the first man. Mocha had two boys – Asher (silver) and Abed-nego (black). Eleanor was our only goat to give birth to two beautiful baby girls named Abigail (black) and Anna (silver).

Here are pictures of our new healthy kids. 

Adam and his mother Violet

Abed-nego (black) and Asher (silver)

Abigail (black) and Anna (silver) with their mother Eleanor

Friday, June 1, 2012

The Pavilion is Finished!!!

Yay! We’re so excited to see that our new addition to the farm has been completed. We started building the pavilion in the beginning of April and finished it on May 8th. Now we have a nice shaded area for tours and birthday parties complete with lights and fans for those hot summer days and nights.

Here are photos of the progress from start to finish.


Monday, May 7, 2012

A Shawl Fiasco ... Almost

Brett came into the store and stopped to chat for a few minutes with me and sat down in one of the chairs which had Angela's beautiful crocheted purple shawl on the back of it. When he left, neither of us noticed that her shawl had disappeared. He came in a few minutes later saying "Look what I almost dropped into the burn pile!" while holding up the shawl. I said, "Why in the world would you do that?!?" To which he explained that it  somehow had gotten caught onto the lighter in his back pocket - when he was taking care of the burn pile he noticed something hanging behind his legs and almost thought he had grown a tail. After a few minutes of playing around in his back pockets, he managed to free himself of his newly-grown purple tail so that he could return it to its rightful place. Angela and I are both very happy that Brett took the time to figure out what was hanging behind  his leg instead of hastily casting it into the burn pile. We all got a good chuckle out of it though.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Featured Products - May 4, 2012

Come in and check out our locally made products. This display features our products made in VA and TN.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

What's the Buzz

Bees... that's what! Our friend, Debbie Clayton, came over Saturday and helped Brett install bees in our first hive. I showed up just after the installation with the camera. We purchased 3 pounds of bees. It sounded like there was a fan running in the hive.

We can't wait to get honey but we've learned that the bees often don't produce enough honey in the first year to harvest any. :(

I was surprised how content the bees seemed. There were LOTS of them flying around us but they didn't even seem to notice us. Here'a a photo of me and Brett in typ ical beekeepers attire - except for the big hole in his pants - that's a big beekeepers no-no!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Educational Farm Tours

We've been working diligently to get the farm ready for educational farm tours. Everything came together Friday when we hosted 63 K - 3rd graders for our first tour. The children had a great time learning how a sweater is made, from the goat to the garment. Here's a virtual tour:

 Setting up our nearly completed pavilion
(it'll be completely done in about a week)

The introduction

 Harvesting cashmere

Processing Yarn 

Garment Making - Hand Knitting 

Garment Making - Machine Knitting 

Petting the goats

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Catching Up

It seems like forever since I wrote my last post. I wished I liked writing - I'm sure I'd post more if I did! I do post regularly on Facebook; you can follow us at

A lot has been happening here at Mountain Hollow Farm since my last post 7 months ago. We are still working on repairing our fences from the flood on June 20, 2011 but many new things are happening too.

I thought about telling you about it in one post but I realized that it would be REALLY long! So, keep an eye on our blog over the next week or two... I'll be posting! In the meantime, I'll leave you with some photos of our new bucklings. Violet's boy was born yesterday and Mocha's twins were born this morning.