The sheep we raise are not wool sheep, but hair sheep which means we don’t shear them; their hair sheds naturally in the spring. When the lambs are butchered we send the lambskins off to a tannery and they produce beautiful and durable rugs, couch throws, car seat covers, crib and stroller liners or whatever you see fit to use them for!
The fleece of lambskin has excellent insulating properties and is also resistant to flame, dirt, moisture and static electricity. Lambskin is a natural insulator and has temperature-regulating properties, keeping you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. This makes it a great choice for newborn babies that are learning to regulate their body temperatures. Lambskins have a soothing effect that can result in better sleep and since they are gentle on your skin, they are great for people with sensitive skin or babies that are prone to skin rashes. Wool is considered by the medical profession to be hypoallergenic.
These eggs are raised by a partner farm nearby. Jane's chickens are free run with access to large outdoor paddocks that they are rotated through. In addition to the worm-eating and bug-scratching that they do the chickens eat local, non GMO grain (including flax to boost their omega 3's) which Jane either ferments or sprouts depending on the season. These beautiful brown eggs pack a punch with less cholesterol and saturated fat but more vitamin A and E, omega 3's and beta carotene.
When life gives you pastured pork lard, make soap!!
In years past we were never able to sell all of the pork lard from our pigs and instead of letting this beautiful and often misunderstood product go to waste, I now turn some of it into soap! I use pork lard as the hardening fat in my soaps - it's what makes the bar hard so it doesn't turn into a pile of glop when you leave it in your shower. The lard also makes a lovely, creamy lather and is very moisturizing. I've dabbled with a few different recipes, Rosemary Citrus, Mocha, Lavender / Ylang Ylang, Tea tree oil, Lemon Poppyseed and Grapefruit / Bergamot to name a few.
While butter is making a comeback, rightfully reclaiming it's place from the usurper margarine, lard remains relatively reviled among the general public, despite the fact that it has a fatty acid composition similar to olive oil and is extraordinarily rich in vitamin D, as long as the pigs are pasture raised. Trim lard is the fat trimmed from the entire pig. It has a subtle back-note of meatiness that hydrogenated oils and even lard from the grocery store which is bleached and deodorized lacks. It's high smoke point (370F) makes it ideal for frying and it gives braised meats and vegetables a rich mouthfeel. When you purchase lard in this form, it will require rendering but it's super easy! See the FAQ section for instructions on how to do that.
Many old-fashioned recipes require cooking with lard. Despite its demonized reputation, lard is actually better for your health than processed vegetable oils. Leaf lard is the highest grade of lard that comes from the area around the kidneys and loin of the pig. It has a soft, spreadable consistency at room temperature and because it's the most pure form of pork lard it's best used for baking flaky, tender pie crusts, crispy cookies and muffins when you don't want the finished product to have any pork taste at all. When you purchase lard in this form, it will require rendering but it's super easy! See the FAQ section for instructions on how to do that. If you've never eaten foods cooked with lard, you're in for a pleasant surprise!