Behind the Recipe Farm Update: June 6, 2021

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This article is a weekly recap of some of the things happening in our lives, on our new farm, and is a behind-the-recipe look at the day to day of raising a family in Southern Utah. Enjoy!

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This week was a little slower than some in the past and I was ok with that!

After doing a whole lot of testing (stool testing, breath test, blood work, x-rays) the last few weeks I finally talked to my new doctor this week about what’s going on. I have a really aggressive/hard to get rid of bacteria in my stomach (H Pylori), SIBO, and degenerative bone disease in my middle back. It’s take a lot of time and work to figure some of this out and it took a lot of time to get treatments going this week too. I’m currently taking a couple different antibiotics and stomach acid reducers to try and kill the bacteria in my stomach. We’ll work on SIBO next and I have an appointment with a spinal specialist tomorrow.

I haven’t said much about this to many people, but it’s been a lot to process. It takes so much energy to figure out this kind of stuff and a lot of energy to try and heal. I was happy for a simpler week at home. I’ve had stomach and gut issues for 4 or so years now and have tried all kinds of elimination diets, doctors, natural healing, chiropractic care, and more. I’m hopeful that some of this new information will finally help me to heal. I’m so very ready to feel well.

I just wanted to say that if you have chronic health problems, I see you. If you have chronic pain, I see you. It can feel like it’s never going to end. I understand that feeling. Is this treatment finally what will help or is it just another stepping stone down the path?

I’m grateful I have access to modern medicine and I’m hopeful. I’m anxious to talk to the spine doctor tomorrow. I haven’t slept more than a few hours at time for months and months because the pain gets to be unbearable. I’m really hopeful I’ll find relieve from the pain and more sleep soon.

I guess in closing, let’s just remember to be kind to each other. Behind closed doors and off of Instagram, we often have no idea what someone is going through. I’m grateful I can share here.

In more fun news we have two visiting cows here! Our neighbor has these two wonderful Jerseys who walk over in the morning to hang out in the field with Millie and Mable and eat grass all day. Then he comes and walks them back across the street at night to milk them, milks in the morning, and they come back over for the day. It’s a fun arrangement, and there’s something really magical about watching cows walk back and forth each day. Welcome to some green grazing Rhubarb and Sweet Pea!

Having our neighbors have these great cows, trying a new set up so Millie can be in the field, and a few other things have really given us a lot of insight and information.

We’ve decided to sell Millie and Mable! I know we haven’t had them long, but they’ve been such great teachers while they were here. They were our first live stock and we really learned a lot. I also learned that I really do enjoy milking a cow. It’s so grounding.

That being said, we’ve decided that the effort (feed, time, energy) isn’t worth the 8 or so cups of milk we were getting each day. I’m currently trading the neighbors for milk in exchange for grazing and we might even purchase one of the cows in the future. We decided as a family that we would transfer the time and effort we’ve put into milking into the garden and getting the farm stand up and running (and filled!).

I worried a little bit about what people would think. I felt like we were “giving up”, but the more I’ve sat with this the last while I know it’s what we want to do. We could keep going but it feels good to have a little more of our limited time and energy for other things at this moment. Will I have a milk cow again in the future? I sure plan on it! And then I figure we’ll get deep into legit cheese making. That learning curve will wait for another season though.

We took the whole family to town council this week too. It’s such a neat and formal meeting to attend; I was so glad we went. We went to see if our business license for the farm stand was approved and it was! We had my oldest answer the few questions the council had and we celebrated our good news this weekend with milkshakes and swimming. We’re officially official to start that new business and we are having so much fun brainstorming what we’d like in it.

We bought an insulated shipping container a local restaurant was selling. We plan on using part of it as a walk in cooler and converting the rest to the store. We plan on putting a faux roof on it, probably a little simple awning for a porch, and have some porch swings outside. It’s big though, so we’ll have lots of room for wares to sell.

I bought a freeze dryer this week(!!!); big investment but I’m pumped! I’ve wanted one for ages. We are thinking we could do freeze dried fruit and vegetables we grow as well as candy (have you had freeze dried Skittles or Jolly Ranchers? SO fun!) So getting set up with that kind of thing is exciting too.

It was a great week that involved some big decision, big purchases, and big pieces of information.

Thanks for being here and reading on this little corner of the internet. I look forward to sharing each week.

About Melissa

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  1. Laura says:

    You guys are awesome! So many exciting things, I did a legit happy dance when i read about your freeze dryer and shipping container! Just the coolest. Sending prayers for your spine and gut💜💜

    1. Melissa says:

      Thank you so much for the encouragement, I appreciate the feedback so much!

  2. Bev says:

    My thoughts for a healthy future! It’s amazing that you already do so much with the health issues you’ve been dealt.

  3. deb c says:

    I am doing the happy dance for so many reasons after reading this!!!!!!!!!