Wednesday – Heather

Heather Makoski Bio

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This sweet baby piggie is just hours old!

Hello!

My name is Heather and it is a pleasure to be a part of the Hen House Blog!

I was born in Atlanta, GA, but spent 19 years in Colorado before moving to Virginia. I came to Polyface last June for the 2012 internship and stayed on as the first female apprentice. I became interested in the food industry when I was in high school, and over the years sought to eat in a healthier way through community gardening, hunting and supporting local farmers.

I had a very blessed and comfortable life in Colorado complete with a good IT career and condo, but on a calling from the Lord, I left it all to start a new life in farming at Polyface.

I look forward to seeing what the Lord has planned for the future and I hope to use what I learn at Polyface to provide healthy food for people!

1. What inspires you?

So many things (and people) inspire me! Homemakers, farmers, gardeners, homesteaders, my family, and God’s Word, just to name a few.

2. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I see myself on a farm raising chickens (and other things). “Raising chickens” seems to have become my standard answer to this question and here’s why. Almost ten years ago when I interviewed for an IT help desk job at my previous place of employment, they similarly asked “what do you see yourself doing in ten years.” Well, at that time I had no clue, so I said “raising chickens.” They hired me anyway and little did I know that almost ten years later, I’d quit that job and start raising chickens. 🙂

3. What is one of your most fulfilling hobbies?

I love gardening. I did a lot of gardening before I came to Polyface and was fortunate enough to get to help Leanna in the garden last summer. I hope to set up a few raised beds (made out of old water tanks) by my cottage this spring.

4. What do you like to cook/favorite foods?

I love to cook and eat (spicy!) Mexican style food. I like to experiment with mixing and matching veggies and meats for burritos/tacos (naked burritos at this time, since I’m avoiding gluten).

5. What relaxes you after a long day of farming?

I do a number of things to relax after a long day of farming. Depending on how I feel, I may crochet, read/study the Bible, watch a movie or just hang out and chat with farm friends.

6. How do you deal with farm animal deaths?

I just do. That’s not a great answer, huh? Well, for some reason that is about all I can come up with. It is a fact of life (death?) on a farm. Sometimes I’ll say a little prayer, which helps.

7. Who do you hope to share farming skills with?

Anyone who wants to learn!

8. What do you like to read?

I like to read the Bible, Christian historical fiction, Christian inspirational non-fiction, certain blogs and cookbooks. I occasionally like a good novel, too.

9. What is your greatest asset?

Willingness. Willingness to take God-ordained risks, to learn, to serve, to change, to grow…

And now for a couple pictures!

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Working in the garden this summer.

Working in the garden this summer.

 

Spring Hatch
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Chicks

The first hatch of the season is in full swing here at Greenmont Farm.  As Joel recently said in the spring newsletter, “Frustrated with the quality of hatchery chicks (small, fragile, stupid) several years ago Polyface embarked on a bold plan: saving healthy, productive older layers, mating them with select roosters, and hatching in-house pullets.  … Read the Rest

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Crunch ‘n Munch – A Video, Not a Snack Recipe
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Sometimes after I move the cows, I like to sit for a minute and watch them graze. I love hearing them crunch and munch happily on the grass.  Have a listen!    

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Moving The Cows Across The Street (with Video)
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Normally I move the cows by myself, but when it is a more complicated move, Polyface will send a crew over to help.  A few weeks ago the cows needed to move across the street so Daniel came over with his sons, Travis and Andrew.  In this case, Travis and Andrew were responsible for keeping the … Read the Rest

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New Addition
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When I went out to move the herd on Saturday, I noticed an unidentified black object in the pasture with the cows.  It was bigger than a cow pie, but smaller than a cow and it was not moving. Hmmm…”what’s that?”, I thought. As I got closer, the unidentified object sprung to its feet and scampered … Read the Rest

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The Cows Came Home
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The cows (about 530 of ’em) have been arriving at Greenmont in batches over the last couple weeks.   If you remember Sheri’s post on Cow Days and Winter Grazing Schedule, they arrived just about on schedule.  According to the grazing plan, they should have enough grass here to last through about mid-January and then they … Read the Rest

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Greenmont Farm
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As I mentioned last week, I am now managing Greenmont Farm as a contract farmer for Polyface. Greenmont is located near Fishersville, VA…about a 30 minute drive from Polyface. At 350 acres, Greenmont is one of Polyface’s largest rental farms. My new position here started on January 3rd and Kevin and I moved in to … Read the Rest

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I Do
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Hello friends!  I apologize for the lengthy silence, but I have good news to share!  I got married! Seems to be contagious around here. 😉 Here’s a little glimpse of the story: Kevin and I met last year at church (his mom introduced us!).  Our first date was in July and it didn’t take us … Read the Rest

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Candling Eggs
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Candling is a technique used to examine the growth and development of the embryo inside the egg.  A bright light is placed behind (or underneath) the egg in order to see details inside. Although candles are not generally used anymore, the term still remains. During the 21 day incubation period, I would candle the eggs once or … Read the Rest

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A Little Bit About The Incubator
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The incubating here at Polyface continues to go well.  As I mentioned in my previous post, we are breeding Barred Rock roosters with Rhode Island Red hens.  The reason we are using this combination of birds is because this is what we have right now. The hens are a couple years old and we are … Read the Rest

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