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countryside-336686.jpg

Intro


From Free Range to Feng Shui

 

This is what happens when conscientious meets couture

 

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Intro


From Free Range to Feng Shui

 

This is what happens when conscientious meets couture

 

 

It wasn't long ago - three generations, maybe four - the world was different, farming for subsistence was called farming, organic wasn't a concept, feedlots were still unknown, 100 acres meant something, and farmers went about the business of farming. Mouths to feed, equipment to fix, animals to tend to, clothes to wash, house to keep... it might not have been complicated, but it certainly wasn't easy.

Every spring ushered in a renewed sense of optimism.  As the morning frost became a fading memory, the ever earlier sunlight facilitated a walk out to the rolling pasture to check-in on the calving heifers - to make sure she was succeeding at her first big task of the year.  Twins were always good luck, everyone knew that, a female meant continued prosperity and a male would end up at market.  Calves were weened off their mother's teat, once an ample supply of colostrum ensured they would thrive, and the whole family shared in the bounty of milk, butter and cheese.  Life was good.   

Somewhere along the way the world started to change, subtly at first, but dramatic in hindsight.  The children raised on fresh milk and pasture-fed animals moved into town, they started to build an existence away from the day to day their forefathers and foremothers had known.  Farms started to specialize, while the arable land remained important, the patchwork quilt of pasture that couldn't be easily or responsibly planted became, like the livestock that grazed them, a nuisance, that was almost forgotten.

Breeds were once prized for some combination of their required living conditions, delicious meat, high fat milk, even docile behaviour while pulling a plow.  There was always compromise, but that's life.  Compromising meant a well-rounded animal, capable of fulfilling their various duties on the farm - duties which slowly started to disappear.  

With the advent of specialized farming, animals which once fit nicely into their important roles, started disappearing from the farm, traded in, upgraded, for their power-house cousins, the ones that pump out the most milk, or make the most meat.  Some were lost to eternity, but for the most part, special people, farmers who knew the historical significance or appreciated the natural beauty of these animals kept a few back, hidden from the turmoil of the modern world.  Waiting, just waiting until the time was right. 

The pastures have been sitting unused, under the vigilant eye of the granddaughters and grandsons of the folks who refused to move to the city.  The ones who held back.  Waiting for another opportunity to re-live in the glory days of family farms.