The idea for Renaissance (Farm) began when my grandfather, brother and myself built a chicken coop for my father as a Christmas present. I have always had a love for animals and the earth.
My father sparked my interest into sustainability with his intense devotion to local and sustainable foods (and he got me to read The Omnivore’s Dilemma and consequently, In Defense of Food). We always kept a garden when I was younger, and to me there was nothing better than a homegrown carrot or pepper or tomato.
When I returned from our field camp in July 2014, having just graduated with my B.S. in geological sciences, a friend helped me to build a 3-hole rabbit hutch. I promptly filled it with my first rabbit, a 15lb black Flemish giant doe – Delilah. Though far from my first rabbit ever, she was the first animal I had ever owned that was going to eventually provide me with sustenance. Soon after, I purchased two more rabbits, another buck and a doe, and my rabbit business took off. Rabbits were easy for me, anything I didn’t sell I butchered and ate myself. It was fabulous.
In January 2015, I landed a job in Alpharetta, GA and had to sell off all but two of my rabbits – Delilah and my blue Silver Fox buck, Blueberry, who I had bred and raised myself. The rabbits, my dog Brantley, and I made the move to GA, where I soon expanded my rabbitry once again to include purebred Silver Foxes and New Zealands. I also added four chicks, a mixed flock of laying hens, for eggs. With the large yard behind the house I was renting, I was also able to plant a garden to provide myself with some fresh produce. Ever since then, I have been constantly thinking of ways to expand my little backyard farm and become more sustainable. I raise mealworms for my chickens and am working on developing a new breed of meat rabbit to suit my own personal needs. We also keep quail and ducks. Hopefully I will soon add goats, sheep, and hogs to my funny farm. It’s a new experience and adventure every day, and I am so very thankful that I am able to provide for myself in such a way. I’m here to share stories and experiences with anyone who is interested.