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March 3, 2012

I noticed this on the coffee table recently and knew immediately something was up:

Then the other night I heard Geoff talking on the phone to someone about directions, and again my interest was peaked. Now, my birthday is right around the corner, and normally clandestine phone calls in hushed tones around a person’s birthday equals birthday surprises. But at GLR, phone calls with strangers and handwritten directions can mean only one thing: new animals.

Geoff has been eagerly awaiting the right climate conditions/weather patterns/hours of daylight/general mojo/moment to add pigs into the creative mix of animals we’ve got working here on the farm. So, bright and early this morning he set out with Scooter and Bailey in the truck to procure us some pork.

I have to admit they are pretty cute, but since I intend on eating at least one of these guys, I am not going to let myself get too attached.

You’ll have to read Geoff’s blog for a more detailed pedigree of these little guys, but I can provide you with a few details. They are a combination of two historic breeds of pig known for their tasty meat and their overall resilience. All four of the pigs are male, and all for have had their essential boy parts removed. In other words they are cha-cha-less piggies. In terms of personality, they are charming. When not being harassed by humans or dogs they sleep quietly together, or, more importantly, root around the field mixing the cow manure with the straw with the dirt with the air to prepare the future location of our summer garden.

Geoff is ever the proud farm papa. Each new addition to our livestock family leaves him beaming, and these little oinkers are no exception. He proudly beheld them going straight to work rooting around the field as soon as he introduced them to their new environment. After several minutes of pig staring, when I turned to go back to the house, Geoff turned to me disappointedly and said, “Don’t you want to spend a few more minutes enjoying this beautiful day with your sweet husband and your pigs?” Of course. Of course. And, truth be told, they really are interesting little guys. I am just keeping my distance because I will eat them. This is the most excited I’ve been about any of our meat animals. My excitement most likely stems from the fact that we will get so many wonderful cuts of meat from this one animal. I’ve got recipe after recipe spinning through my head. Also, we’ve had the pleasure of enjoying some very fresh pork from neighbor’s pigs, and nothing you can buy in any grocery store anywhere compares to them. I’m like the Bubba Gump of pork. We’re going to make pork burgers, pork won-tons, pork dumplings, pork chops, pork tenderloin, pulled pork, barbecued pork ribs, tacos al pastor, and that is all just the fresh cuts of meat. If we go the extra mile and make some charcuterie then we’ll have bacon, sausages, and hams. I might even get bold and whip up some recipes with the offal.

When Geoff looks into the field he sees the wonder of the carbon cycle, the miracle of zero input farming, the joys of pastured grazing. When I look into the field I see breakfast, lunch, dinner, and the baconator.

I'm not naming them, but doesn't the red one look like a Baconator?

The proud pig papa pictures his brood.

P.S Scooter is in love with the pigs because right now they are the only thing on the farm his size. Imagine how much more he will love them when he finds out they are ham.

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