I don’t use the word miracle lightly. I know that I personally have experienced several true miracles in my life, but this past fall we experienced an incredible miracle that we can’t wait to see where it takes us!
If you had asked me a year ago where we would be today, never would I have imagined what our life looks like now. COVID has had all kinds of different effects on our lives in the past year. For us, we saw a huge demand for our products. The hard lesson we learned is that nothing on the farm happens quickly. We tried really hard to get ahead on our meats, particularly on our chicken, but ran into some unexpected hiccups that made it really difficult. We would have conversations like “How cool would it be if we could harvest our own chicken?”, “Imagine how great it would be to have access to fresh chicken all year round!“ and “Wouldn’t it be amazing to take our chicken and make other products with it like sausage and chicken stock?” Dreams. Just dreams.
Until we found a grant application for some potential funding for our dreams. We wrote out our proposal, crossed our fingers and hoped for the best. After a few weeks, we received an email telling us we had not been chosen for the grant, so we went ahead with life, assuming that chance had passed.
One day in mid-November, I was helping my son put together his new bed. I needed a mental break (if you've ever assembled furniture at home, you get what I'm saying!) and checked my email. There it was - we had received the grant funding in the second round! I cried, I'm not ashamed to say. My son asked me what was wrong and I showed him. He said, "So those are happy tears, right?" I forwarded it to my mom, who had the same reaction. I called my husband and told him to come to the house. I was going to show him the email and share the moment with him - until Jack blurted out as soon as he came in the house "HEY DAD! WE GOT THE GRANT!" It was still exciting, just not that "magic moment" I'd created in my imagination. We had been gifted the funds to add a commerical kitchen to our current garage, purchase meat equipment such as grinders and stuffers to make further products, add a chicken processing area where our old deck had been and get the best available chicken processing equipment to make a tedious job easier. So many doors had just opened up for us!
I was soon contacted by the entity providing the grant funds and they shared the caveat - all the work had to be completed by December 30th of 2020! That was an insane timeline! Six weeks, in the middle of Kansas in December during a pandemic. Sure. We got this!
So, we assembled our team of super stars, and I started researching and shopping. We were able to meet the guidelines for the project. Another miracle. This has been a crazy trip getting everything pulled together, but it is such a beautiful new work space and we are very excited about what the future holds for our business and the many new ways we can serve you!
We passed our food licensing inspection with the State of Kansas and we are now able to process our meats further to bring you new varieties and flavors of our great meats. Here are some things that are now available thanks to the new kitchen space:
*A variety of Chicken Sausage (Breakfast, Maple, Italian and Chorizo)
*Chicken Burgers (Hawaiian and Tomato-Basil)
You can purchase them here or at our on-farm market.
What's on the horizon?
*Flavored Burger Patties (Chili Cheese, Bacon Blue Cheese and more!) *New Flavors of Snack Sticks and Brats
*Spatchcocked Chickens ready for roasting
Since the day in 2015 when we said, "Hey, what if we sold some meat?" until today, we've had some significant struggles, times of questioning, highs and lows. This project was such an amazing blessing to our family and we truly want to share this with you to help bring your family together around the table with high quality meats for delicious dinners. We are thankful for this chance to share our farm with you in new ways! Come shop, ask for a kitchen tour (my son is a fabulous docent!) and let us give you the tools to make a great meal from our farm to your family.
I'd also like to give a special thanks to our team that helped pull together our miracle: *The Ceiling Fan Man, Edgerton KS
*Hickman Heating and Cooling, Gardner KS
*Veteran's Painting, Spring Hill KS
*Uncle D's Plumbing, Gardner KS
*Southwest Door, Edgerton KS
*Fuller Concrete, Pleasanton KS