Thursday, April 26, 2012

so you wanna come visit the willamette valley ? - wine geeks pay attention --

Super book to read up on first and a GREAT wine app to bring with you!!

order up people - you'll thank me

Katherine Cole has been a wonderful supporter of Big Table Farm over the years. In fact when we were brand baby new with our very first wines she gave us the time of day which I will be grateful for for a long time - those early supporters mean so much when you are a nobody! She has written some very nice reviews of our wines (several of which where blind tasted BTW : )  and included us in her book Voodoo Vinters which is a great read on Biodynamics in the Oregon Wine industry - with a lovely chapter on Big Table Farm.

In addition to this Katherine (she a very busy woman BTW) has written the definitive app for Oregon wine lovers, entitled Oregon Wine. You can purchase it at Android Market here.
Or, view the app online, free of charge, here.
For your iPhone or iPad: Go to the iTunes store and download Sutro World (free). Once inside the Sutro World library, you will be able to download Oregon Wine along with hundreds of other destination guides.
for a preview of the app click here

more about Katherine -

and the good old face book link : )

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

a nice piece by Dana Spielmann

Dana made this video about draft horses and came out to big table and filmed us at the plowing match too: )

click here to view

Monday, April 23, 2012

Boots - heels - New Boots

A NYC trip sandwiched between horse stuff pretty much my idea of a perfect week -
horse plowing  - NYC - then the draft horse auction - which is lots of hanging out with teamsters talking about horses and looking at equipment and the occasional bidding on things...

I did pick up a few things but avoided any big purchases this time... although this manure spreader was VERY tempting!!!

As extra gravy to my trip to the auction while I was gone a little gift arrived on my porch from  Country Outfitter - Yup new boots...  : ) you will see from this photo of my old boots it was high time! I've had these old boots since 1997 and I'd say 15 years on a pair of boots is just about good!

Sooo in usual Clare style I couldn't wait to try them out so I took a brand spanking pair of boots are wore them for two days straight at the auction (yup pretty much on my feet the entire time) and yup those boots treated me right... that's when you know you got a good pair... I love them!  They are Ariat Shada boots if you wanna check 'em out! and they are super well made not to mention pretty dang stylish! Thank you Country Outfitter... check them out for a pair of cowgirl boots of your own (or lots of other gear too)!

my new cowgirl boots behind the team

my new boots being shown off on the spreader

my new boots being shown off with Duane and Jeb

On a final note I leave you with these spring time picts of the farm! the fruit trees exploded while I was gone and the baby chicks arrived! : )

a very pregnant Josephine with June bug by her side

NYC was amazing!

I sooo enjoyed my trip to the big city! 

The wine event I went for was great I found the NY wine consumer to be very sophisticated and they loved our wines so that's always nice! 

I was graciously hosted my my mothers cousin who is a gem I stayed in her guest apartment a block off the park upper west side which was a real treat. We also got to do a little walk around Lincoln Center with her as tour guide which was lovely.  And I enjoyed several springtime strolls in  central park.

Thanks for your gracious hospitality Mary!!

There was of course a lot of fancy NY style meals out. There was one very special evening out with my NY distributor Fredrick Wildman who has done a beautiful job placing our wines in some on ny finest restaurants. 

That special dinner was at one of those restaurants that carries our wine WD-50 which was an epic meal - the chef Wylie Dufresne is doing an amazing job and the staff was 'on it' we had a great evening and I got to meet one of our collectors Rich Altus and his lovely wife Beth - they are really fun people we just had a great time together!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

These horses and this community are such a gift!

So I type this blog post from 10,000 feet I'm on my way to NYC for three days of wine tastings and fancy wine dinners and literally scraped the last bit of dirt out from under my nails when I took my seat in 31a.

these beautiful photos were taken by my new friend michelle Blumenthal who is also a horsewoman and came out and not only took beautiful photos but volunteered her rig and multiple days of her time to scrape, clean, water, load you name it she was amazing!! thank you Michelle!!

Friday and Saturday where full days of getting ready for and participating in the ODHBA annual Plowing competition this is the biggest plowing competition in the state and honestly I think in the pacific northwest - we had 20 teams out yesterday all plowing together in one place. But what's great about this competition is it's really not .... it's about sharing, comradeship, learning and teaching... it's just an amazing group of horseman and women that I now call friends!

Friday was a long day of loading horses and equipment and after weeks of prepping gear and lots of work the big day had arrived! We had a plot to plow Friday night to 'warm up the horses' and give one of the teamsters something to disc the next day in the demo. So I got my team ready and 'hit the dirt' sadly things didn't start out of the box too well but jerry jr.. who's dad I just adore and is always giving me the most quiet gentle help .. I just love that guy this shot is me plowing with his brother don's team 4 or so years ago at a competition in WA. I think this photo below was 2008 or 2009 and was only my 3rd or 4th time plowing!

... so I digress .. jerry jr. (being part of the awesome lee family) saw I was having trouble and jumped right in as these guys just do .. helped me get the harness adjusted to stop huston from clowning around so much and good old hummer from eating.. and then walked with me doing some 'training' on huston and we adjusted his attitude... it was a HUGE help... then laura and sarah helped me get huston off the ground Saturday so after a rocky start we finished really well - huston settled in and hummer was a rock star!!

This leads me to a big thank you to laura - who walked every furrow with me all day long being there if I needed any assistance with the horses water you name it.. you are a gem Laura I love you and am so grateful for your friendship and dedication and sharing in this horse journey!

Some beautiful shots of just a few of the amazing teamsters!





yours truly

So this last photo michelle took gets me a little mushy as I was picking out feet it was the last step before getting our game faces on... hummer and I were at that moment having a conversation ... one of me moving around him and him carefully picking up each foot for me and letting me know he was completely aware of where I was and totally willing to work with me that day it was in intimate moment and michelle being a horse woman her self saw it for what it was and caught it! I'm so grateful to my horses for teaching me so much and being such wonderful partners in this journey of life we are in together.

Special thanks goes to Duane for his longstanding mentorship, friendship, loaning of rigs, equipment, and knowledge! Duane you are treasure to me as well as the club thank you for all the work you put in to make this a tremendous event!

Duane on the six up riding plow!

with gratitude! I did win my amateur division which does mean I am no longer an amateur... I still feel like one trust me... : )

Monday, April 9, 2012

a really nice weekend!

It has been a super weekend! - All day Saturday I was at Dunaes house working the boys to get them ready for plowing next weekend! They defiantly got a work out! This is them post plow defiantly done for the day .. Thank you Daune as always for the coaching and friendship!

If you don't have plans to do so do come out to the plowing competition in McMinnville!! it will be loads of fun!

Yamhill Valley Heritage Center 11275 SW Durham Lane, McMinnville, Oregon
(Intersection of Highway 18 & Durham Lane)
April 14, 2012
10 am—4 pm
Largest Gathering of Draft Horses & Mules in Oregon to compete in plowing competition
$3 per person — Kids 12 & under FREE

In other news we got a new (old) piece of equipment for the farm ...It's new 'new idea' manure spreader - but this concept is not so new .. this brings us one step closer to really utalizing the horses benifits! Now not only will there compost be on the garden we will be spreading any extra on the fields for more fertilization - the hope is this can be pulled by the tractor as well as horse power it's a larger size but I'm hoping the boys can muscle it - that should pretty well ingratiate them to Brian completely! : ) .. more on that as we start fillin' her up with poo!

I finally got the third hive set up that Laura made!

I'm excited and hopeful that we can have some bees either move in or catch a swarm... which will swell the ranks to three hives!!... Our first hive died off this winter but as luck and good fortune would have it this past weekend another swarm decided they liked that hive just fine and moved in... so we seem to be back up and running with two hives - hopefully the fruit trees will get going soon so those little girls can get some food!

Easter was a nice day went to our friend tessa place and saw this cuteness! : )