PlayHaven Farm LLC & Green Building Project
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* Status Report

* Project List

* Sponsors

* Bobbi's Blog
Updated September 12, 2014


Welcome

If you are interested in Sustainable Farming and/or Sustainable Building, you have found a terrific resource! Even if I do say it myself, I think you will find this website has lots and LOTS of great information about both topics ... and more!

It should be very easy to navigate the website. The photos at the top of the page are links to what they present:

You can always click on the PlayHaven Farm LLC & Green Building Project (and Logo) image to get back to the Home page.

The four (4) text links at the top of the page are quick links to primary pages:

  • "Status Report" is where you find out what is new or has been added in the current update (the date at the top of the Home page). It has links to the pages that have been updated so you don't have go searching to find them.
  • "Project List" Section will give you the details and photos of each project, whether they be part of the Farm, the Green Building Project, or Living a Sustainable Lifestyle.
  • Please visit the "Sponsors" page to connect with the businesses who are so graciously working with us; and to learn how to become a part of the project (if you are so inclined).
  • And lastly, "Bobbi's Blog". Here you'll find entries that don't quite fit or don't deserve their own page on the website. I've closed the 'blogspot' account and moved those entries here.

For those of you who do better with a text links rather than images, you can always scroll to the bottom of any page to find the text links to the pages listed above. By the by, I've also made the list of what the photos represent into links just for you! No thanks needed, I'm happy to do it. :)

At the risk of appearing vain...let me introduce myself... I am Bobbi Walker. I believe that each of us should find a way to do what we love in this life and if we can't do what we love, we can (at least) find a way to have fun doing what we do. Thus the name of the business: PlayHaven. I am the author of everything you'll find on this website (unless I tell you differently). I tend to write the way I talk and I enjoy incorporating humor (one of those playful aspects of me) into my writing. If you don't get some of my little jokes, not to worry, you are in good company.

The Sustainable Farmer

As the Owner of PlayHaven Farm LLC; I am what they call "a beginning farmer", which means I just started the business of farming in 2012 even though I've spent the last 20 years getting ready to do so by attending various Workshops and Classes offered in the Kansas City MO area by a variety of organizations such as Extension and the Growing Growers Program. So if you have questions about Sustainable Farming that I can't answer, I know who to contact that CAN answer them!

The Sustainable Building Advocate

As the Project Manager of the PlayHaven Green Building Project AND the co-author of a green building tool: DYO® Kits: Green Building Decision Kit (offered by Hathmore Technologies, LLC); I have spent the last 30+ years dreaming of the day when I would be able to build an earth-friendly home. Since 30+ years ago, the very idea was pretty radical, I had to teach myself how to go about building that home. Over the years, I have met and learned from a tremendous group of individuals. So if you have questions about Sustainable Building that I can't answer, once again I know who to contact that CAN answer them!

The Artist

As the Artist; I am entering a new phase. It took me a long time to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up (have I grown up yet??), so I didn't go to college right out of high school. It was 15 years later that I decided I needed to be artistically creative and went to college to get a degree in Commercial Art. I worked as an in-house Graphic Designer for a business before I started up my own business (Intuitive Design). Unfortunately, I decided to close the business the end of 2012 due to economic issues. :( -- BUT! I knew I still needed that creative outlet and started taking classes in Fine Art. (I am ever the student!) I am now working in graphite (which translates to: pencil) and AM LOVING IT! I hope to have my better pieces available for purchase in limited editions soon. When I do, you'll find a link to them added to this website.


Get On the List for the 2015 Order Form and Newsletter

You will need to contact me so I can put you on the books to get the 2015 Order Form and Newsletter, etc. Do this by emailing me and include your name, phone number, and city in the email. Use this address: bobbi (put the "at" sign here) playhavengreen (and then the "dot" sign) com. (Don't you just hate that spammers have made providing an easy link for email nie unto impossible without one of those robotic, fill-in forms?)

I've had so much interest in the Grass Fed Beef that I am selling shares early to be sure I have enough for everyone. If you want to buy your 2015 Cowpooling Share before next Spring, YOU CAN!

Deposits are required with your order/share. I accept cash or checks (sorry, no credit cards this year). I know it can be intimidating to have to pay for a years worth of meat in two (2) payments (the deposit and the balance when your meat is picked up). Check out my idea for a "Meat Account".

I am happy to be YOUR farmer so long as you are willing to come out to the farm to pick up your food (and to the processor's location for beef). I do not ship/deliver food or live animals. (I do, however, make my way into the Kansas City Metro area on a regular basis and am happy to meet you on the Missouri side [*to deliver EGGS only*].)

Remember, farming is primarily SEASONAL. The hens lay eggs all year, so those are available round the calendar. Everything else has to "grow up", so while you are putting in an order now, you will have to wait until everything else is ready to be harvested.


House Renovation - the Green Way

Still haven't gotten to the bathroom renovation yet. Heavy sigh... need some help around here. Know anyone who wants to come play at the farm? Cross your fingers and toes for me, will you?

Sponsors

Please check them out and consider them for your next project!

Check back to find out the progress of our efforts.

Contact Information

The Resources Page has our Contact Information - Bottom of the Page.


StatusReport

September 12, 2014

A BIG Decision...

It's been 2 years now of selling meat chickens. I am grateful for the experiences I've learned in the process and have come to a rather unpleasant decision:

I won't be offering meat chickens for sale in 2015.

Why? The first reason is the processing. Not the actual processing, but the inability to find people to help with it.

The Dark Cornish makes for lovely meat, so long as the birds are not stressed prior to processing; which means no travel to get to a processing facility. As long as we process them On-Farm, we get nice, tender meat.

I am not willing to switch to the Cornish Cross hybrid because if I'm putting chickens on pasture, I want them to BE chickens and scratch, forage and improve the soil with their activity. The Cornish Cross gets so big, so fast, they practically sit in the feeder and barely move. Granted, their muscles are so little used, that even travel stress doesn't make them tough. But that does not make up for the rest of it.

The only thing that might make me change my mind about having Dark Cornish meatbirds in the future is if enough people COMMIT to helping with the processing. That means promising to be here, marking the date in stone, and actually showing up to work. I'm very happy to provide compensation... for example, free chickens comes to mind.

This year, a few people expressed interest but never committed. One nice man committed and then life happened and he couldn't make it (it happens, I understand). So, once again, it was just the hubby and me. It makes for LONG days when it's just the two (2) of us. We really need AT LEAST four (4) people to do this efficiently.

The other reason is the problem of getting customers to come to the farm to get their chickens.

I don't have room to store a bunch of frozen chickens waiting for people to decide when they have time to get their paid-for product. AND, the refrigerator that I DO have, normally stores eggs, so I have to put those eggs in coolers during processing. It holds a limited number of chickens for the dry chill portion of processing so we have to divide the processing up dependent on that number. As soon as the first batch is out of the refrigerator and vacuum packed, the next batch goes in, and so on.

I did not realize how difficult it would be to get people to commit to coming to the farm on a specific date/time. Frankly, it made me very grumpy, cranky and down-right unpleasant to be around. I don't want to be like that.

I don't know how to fix this, so the only thing that might make me change my mind about having Dark Cornish meatbirds in the future is if I figure out a way to fix it.

Suggestions are welcome, by the way, for solutions to either or both problems.

The Moowers have a New Addition!

Button had her calf: a boy! It was August 20 sometime just before dawn. The hubby went out to open up the chickens' coops and check on Button and found her "disposing" of the afterbirth. I got out there at 6:30 am and got to see the calf stand up for the first time. More story and Photos here..

Nike is due to deliver in a couple of weeks. Fingers and toes crossed.

Hen News

Sad news. We lost another hen on August 23rd. The last of the Dark Cornish girls died sometime between egg collection (in the evening) and coop cleaning (that morning). She was a great chicken. I am sorry to see her leave and, yes, I cry over losing her and all the animals.

There are a bunch of photos on the Chicken 2014 page, for your viewing pleasure.

My Artwork

This summer has been devoted to the farm... no time or energy to work on art. I don't like that problem. I NEED this outlet. Thank goodness for fall and being willing to make changes on the farm.


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