Updated: Jan 14, 2021
The last few years it has become more and more popular to choose a word of the year. A word that you want to focus on in the coming year. For some the word is tied to one specific goal they have, others choose a word that reminds them to take time for themselves or being present. I've been watching the 'Word of the Year' crowd from the outside and finally chose 2021 to jump in.
My word for 2021 is intentional. I want to be intentional in our personal life as well as the direction we are going with the farm.
Most importantly, we're going to be adding a family member to our farm soon. Like within the next two weeks.. That's going to change the dynamics of our house and how we complete tasks on the farm. But through all the craziness of this change, I want to be intentional with my time. The time we devote to Charlie and the baby as we transition. The time we spend with family and friends. If there is anything that 2020 taught all of us is that our relationships are so important. I want to continually nurture those relationships.
We have big goals and improvements we want to make on the farm in 2021 which means all our “extra” time will need to be focused and used intentionally to achieve those. The things we want to achieve in 2021 are going to take some learning, they're things we've never done before - actually never imagined doing in the past. I'll let you in on some of the farm specific goals we're hoping to achieve.
1) We want to improve our sheep operation, first we want to split our ewes into three breeding groups spread throughout the year. We talk about this a little bit in a Youtube video here. There are two reasons we want to split our ewes in groups. The first is to spread the work out throughout the year. It is a lot of work to lamb, no matter how many or few you have but only have 25 in a group will be much more manageable than a group of 58 than we are doing coming up in March. The second is spread out the income for the farm throughout the year. Our lamb crop is our biggest source of income throughout the year but expenses are happening all year.
2) We want to improve our lambing rates and cycles. We want to produce more lambs raised through to weaning as well as our conception rates through the three cycles we'll be working with once we have multiple breeding groups. This is going to be difficult.
3) We want to build a new barn. Levi has been working hard on the old house at the farm. The project was going back and forth between completely tearing it down and starting new or salvaging some of the old house and adding onto it. We've settled on a plan. Levi is salvaging the main frame of the old house with plans to add a new feeding pad attached to the end. More on this coming soon!
4) We want to start a meat CSA. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, it's a business model for a growing number of farms across the country. Customers pay upfront for a delivery or pick up service each week with a smaller amount of goods provided by local farmers. For the community, it's beneficial for those who want to support local farmers but aren't able to buy a full or half side of beef, pork or lamb at a time. Most people don't have room for 400 pounds of meat in their freezers at a time. The new barn that Levi is working on will be used to feed animals in our CSA program. This goal is super exciting and absolutely terrifying at the same time.
In our personal life, the largest goal we have is being debt free (besides our mortgage) by the end of 2021. This translates to being intentional with our finances. I really think we can do it but we have to be intentional with where our money is going. We’re going to have to say no to some things and for the short term, that's ok.
Those are our goals for year. They're all related back to being intentional everyday. It's going to take a lot of intentionality to reach these goals. We'll bring you along with us as we try to achieve them. Do you pick a word of the year? Is it related to your goals? Comment below!