Life in the off season, what's it like? As of this past year, I (Stephanie), have been have been a part time farmer, the rest of my time is split with my part time job at NOFA-NY (all while being a work at home mom!). So this post will focus on our full time farmer, Bret.
Back to the idea of the off season - when does it start, what's it like, is it real? I like to tell people that during the off season, we work closer to 40 hours rather than the 10-12hr/day norm of the summer, but there's more to it than that.
Maybe we can say the off season starts when our CSA ends, at least that's when our tightly scheduled days and weeks end. But there's still so much outdoor/garden work to be done.
Maybe the off season starts when the ground freezes? But there's still animal chores, and more of them when it includes breaking frozen water multiple times a day and feeding 100% of our animals' daily rations (as opposed to them feeding themselves on pasture).
Either way, we're right on the thick of it now! It's mid January and Bret has been working hard and putting in long hours planning our brand new garden space. With 7 or so acres in cover crops, we're essentially starting from scratch.
While Bret was keeping busy with garden planning, picking out seeds, and finding/purchasing new equipment, he was also holding off on starting any big projects in anticipation of our new arrival. Little did we know that we would have such an extended quiet part of our off season!
Baby #2 was due January 2nd, though we had a feeling she might come early. By mid December we were prepared, ready, and waiting to meet our new baby. So we waited, and waited, and waited...
Finally, on January 15th, nearly 2 weeks "late", we welcomed Sydney Rose into the world! Hazel is so excited and in love with her little sister (and so are we)! Now, back to this off season work..