Category Archives: Uncategorized

Jamie Lin Wilson Returns To Cook

Oh, My. Yak. It’s only TEN DAYS until the 2nd Annual Border to Border Country Music Farm Party!!  Jamie Lin Wilson is returning to Cook, with her musician friend Courtney Patton. Cook’s own Jason Martinson will be starting the party at 4:30, and the Crescent Bar and Grill will be there with food!

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Last year was one heck of a party! I even gave up my parking space.

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You have to check out her music here: Jamie Lin Wilson YouTube Holidays and Wedding Rings !

Here’s a video of the two ladies performing “What I Didn’t Say”, by Courtney.

Also, camping is available on-site via HipCamp! Book your stay HERE. See you at the farm!!

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Summer Day Camp at the Farm!

We are excited to launch our first ever farm day camp!

So here’s the scoop:

Who:  7-12 year olds

Cost: $200 full week / $50 per day.  Space is limited so register early (priority will given to those registering for full weeks first).  A  $50 non-refundable deposit due at registration.

Date / Times:  Camp week starts Monday June 25 and runs to Thursday the 28th.  Camp starts at 9am runs to 3pm

What we do:

Each day will include a mix of activities – a nature hike, a farm job, animal time, snack, lunch, a craft or project and free play time.

We emphasize social and emotional skill building, including a focus on empathy and compassion, both with peers and with our animals.

We believe that children benefit immensely from time spent outdoors and camp will be held rain or shine!

A Day at the Farm

9:00 – Arrive at the farm!  Time to start the day!  We will all meet in the big red barn and have a quick orientation and introductions.

9:30 –  Morning Farm Chores

10:30 – snack

10:45 – Project

11:30 –12:00 – Lunch

12:00-1:00 – Free time

1:00 – 1:30 – Nature hike

1:30 – 3:00 – Animal Time!

  • Monday June 25  – Crazy Camelids
  • Tuesday June 26 – Rammy Ruminants
  • Wednesday June 27 – Poultry and Porcines
  • Thursday June 28 – Exceptional Equines

3:00 – Campers leave the farm

What to bring:    Camp will be held no matter the weather so bring weather appropriate clothing – shorts/pants, t-shirt/sweatshirt, covered toe comfortable shoes, rain gear & puddle boots on wet days

  • Bag lunch, two snacks and bottled water
  • Sunscreen and preferred bug spray
  • Any medications and instructions

How to Register:    Fill out the following form and we will get back to you “chop chop”!

All Tucked In For Winter

We are often asked where the animals from the petting zoo GO in the winter?!?!?

The zoo area is not very hospitable in the winter, so it is a fair enough question.

winter-zoo

The large animals – Molly, Lilly, the llama girls, horse, ponies and donkeys are turned into the large wooded pasture that you see when you come up the driveway. There are three loafing sheds in the trees to protect them from the cold winds, wet and snow.

herd, pony, llama, sheep, cow, cattle, angus, highland cattle

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(Here are a couple pics of the "door shed" Jill and Lois created. 

Approximately 12 x 20 and cost less than $200!)

The small animal herd is in a separate smaller pen sharing a shelter.

The old barn has been converted to the poultry / bunny barn.

poultry winter-4

poultry winter-7Chicken Coop

poultry winter-1Guinea Coop
flemish giant, rabbit, bunny, clara, walter,

Clara tucked in for the long, cold, dark season.

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George and Ruby have a brand new fully insulated house.

Winter 2015/2016 a straw house……..winter 2016/2017 a wood house…… winter 2017/2018 brick????

Just because we close to the public doesn’t mean the work stops.  The animals still need food, water and boy are they attention hogs after working in the zoo all summer!

 

Lulu Una

On Feb 26th 2015, we had our second baby to be born on the farm since the 1940’s!

It was a balmy -27 F

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Lulu spent her first few days in a paper towel box in the kitchen wearing a pair of preemi baby jammies.

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It’s important for babies to get their mothers first milk…immediately.  It is also important to not be attacked by the mother while trying to obtain the first milk.  It only took a few attempts for me to realized I needed back up.  Another phone call I am sure my sister never thought she’d get!

Freedom is not a big fan of being milked.  I am not a big fan of milking sheep.  I hope we have no repeat performances of that debacle.

Guest Book 2014

Wow, what a great weekend!! The farm was open to the public Thursday through Monday, and we had booths at the Cook Area Farmers’ Market and Orr’s Third of July.

This evening I paged through the guest book, thinking I’d start sharing the entries in a blog post.

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Guest book inside 1

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I was hesitant to title the guest book “Volume One”, but maybe you all will fill this one and we’ll need to order another. 😀 We can hope!!

Thank you to everyone who has visited the farm so far!

 

 

 

 

 

Peafowl

Johann and AnnaHere we go again…..  how did we end up with peafowl?

As usual, it started with a phone call…..”Hey Lois….”   (I swear I clearly said…”no more animals…”)

Johann and Anna moved to the farm September 2015.  A few of our fall guests got a sneak peak at the birds before our season ended.  For those folks, I have to say, the birds look SOOOOO much better!!  And if you haven’t met them yet, you are in for a treat!  Talk about beautiful creatures.  (And they sound funny too!)

For more info on peafowl follow this link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peafowl

 

 

 

Pinterest Pumpkins

We (Laura) created a Pinterest profile for the farm! Here are a few of the pumpkins I’ve made with our surplus pumpkins. Did I mention that we’re having a “Sick Of Pumpkins Sale”? HALF OFF!! That means small pumpkins are now $1.50, medium $2.50, and large are $4. You can’t afford to NOT try a few new techniques.

First, I headed down to the local True Value and picked up some chalkboard black and chrome, both of which come in SPRAYpaint! I argued with Joe about the value of Pinterest, but don’t think he was having any of it lol.

Then I practiced on some fake pumpkins I picked up last year on clearance. I had a bunch of leftover black and orange lace from the Dollar Barn 😦 , but no flat tacks or common pins. I ran to Zup’s grocery and one of their awesome staff pointed me to the tacks and pins. (Cleaning aisle, not office supplies. FYI) They were gold and multicolored, so I just used some of my new spray paint to get them the right colors.

Nailed It 2015 (2 of 5) Nailed it Pumpkins (2 of 18) Nailed it Pumpkins (5 of 18) Nailed it Pumpkins (6 of 18) Nailed it Pumpkins (9 of 18) Nailed it Pumpkins (16 of 18)

 

Nailed It 2015 (4 of 5)

We went to The Big Town (Duluth) and checked Hobby Lobby, where I scored a blingy sticker kit for 40% off. I was so happy that the littlest gems were strips instead of individuals.

Nailed it Pumpkins (18 of 18)

Even the fairy garden got some baby pumpkins. Hope you liked the post and got a few ideas. More importantly, COME BUY SOME PUMPKINS! PLEASE!

So far the cows, pigs, and chickens still eating them, but they will be getting sick of them any day. Check out the Facebook page or YouTube for cute videos of that.

Loveyabye!

What IS Rhubarb, Anyway? (Fruit,Vegetable, or Noxious Weed?)

When our new friend Denyel asked what rhubarb was, we had a hard time answering coherently. That’s a good question, we thought.  Having grown up here, we take rhubarb for granted. Every homestead has a couple of them in the front yard.

“Huge leaves,” I said, holding my arms wide. “Lois uses them to make birdbaths out of cement.”

She still looked lost.

“The stalks are bright red and look like celery…”Lois tried. “And it’s really sour.”

“But don’t eat the leaves!! Or feed them to your animals! They are poisonous!”, I added.

“They’re impossible to kill,” Lois offered. “Can’t kill that stuff with gasoline and hand-grenades. A lot like lilacs! ”

She wasn’t any more convinced. “Just try it!, ” we implored.

I whipped out my “Joy of Rhubarb” Cookbook (yes, it is a real cookbook) after our visit, and learned that it is, indeed a vegetable. (Though a NY court decided in 1947 that it was treated as a fruit, and therefore tariffed as one.)

Wikipedia also adds that it can be used as a laxative. Too bad we didn’t have that info for Denyel, though it probably wouldn’t have helped.

rhubarb 001 rhubarb 003 walking tour 2 023My sister’s rhubarb kicks butt!!

Even when I don’t have the time or energy to bake (or it’s too hot to light the oven), I freeze rhubarb that is chopped into 1/2 inch pieces, two or three cups per bag. Then they are ready to go if I want to bake in the  fall or winter. This year I experimented with Strawberry Rhubarb Ice Cream Topping and jam, which was a hit at the farm store and Farmers’ Market.

Do you have a favorite rhubarb recipe that you would be willing to share? Paul doesn’t. He says it’s a secret family recipe from his Great great great Grandma, but I call BS; he got it at the Rhubarb Festival /CHUM Bake Sale.

Yes. There is a real, Annual Rhubarb Festival to our south in Duluth, MN. Denyel probably won’t be attending.

 

 

 

 

Why Aren’t You Open 7 Days a Week?

 

1.) Because the animals need a break! Have you seen animals at a traditional zoo; pacing, depressed, anxious?  We didn’t open our family farm to the public to exploit animals for money; we make money so we can continue to feed all those mouths through the winter!  And hopefully along the way, we will educate people of all ages and help them to be better stewards of this planet we call home. We want to teach people to treat animals and the earth better, by being a good example.

2.) We need several days a week to maintain the 119 acres that aren’t open to the public. The four days a week that CCC is closed are the days that Lois and Jill do the actual farming. Things like infrastructure (fencing, clearing land, refilling the tire tower with sand, etc.), as well as maintenance are done on these days.

3.) It’s also important to us to have the time to connect with our OWN families and friends as well as enjoy our individual hobbies. Having the store was really draining and stressful; we want to do better this time with balancing work and home lives.

4.) Finally, the days we aren’t open to the public are the days we schedule special events, like birthday parties, family reunions, field trips, etc. We try to do this in such a way that the animals are in their exhibit pens as little as possible.

Occasionally, visitors can’t make it to the farm on the days we are open to the public; we can be flexible. Private tours are available; call for more info.