White vinegar has been our best friend throughout the entire process of producing cheese. Of course we cut corners and haven't bought frivolous things for the dairy, why would we have bought a water softener? Surely we could do without. Just like we could do without a proper barn or acreage of our own. The building must be kept insanely clean (mostly by my standards but secondarily by VDACS standards). There is a hand wash sink in each room and all the plumbing webs back to the water heater and a lovely little piece of equipment called an UV Filtration System. If this piece of equipment was a person I would punch it in the face. Each year the light bulb has to be changed - no big deal, right? Well let me tell you something I may be blonde but I know how to change a damn light bulb but this thing - what a poorly designed 'important' system that almost every dairy is required to have. Literally, the only thing keeping me from failing a water test is a tiny rubber o-ring. Regardless, our awesome plumber friend will be out tomorrow to fix the damage. Our ability ended in water EVERYWHERE and my stress level HIGH.
Meanwhile, our supposed perfectly balanced cheese cave was not perfect and everything had to go - thankfully I had not filled it completely but man, what a shame. We're still waiting on labels to arrive so I'll just keep experimenting and making. It's still fun to me! But it definitely needs to start making some money. I made a batch of bug off lotion bars this weekend for a friend's birthday and hope to make more this week to compliment our goat milk soaps. The upcoming milkers are learning their names and coming in for dinner at night. There's just one or two stragglers who haven't caught on yet. They'll get a craving for grain a some point and head on in with the others eventually. I'm not too worried about it. Our current milkers aren't perfect but I'm considering them practice for the future. You have to start somewhere!
I'm off to soak every fitting in the building in vinegar and do some acid cleaning. When the going gets tough I just picture myself in a new place in a new barn with outlets and lighting everywhere. Not to mention a small house with a porch to enjoy my family on. One day! Check out our new NewsTribe page, lots of cool things there!
The sink area in the Milk Plant (Cheese Room) is getting tight with the added cheese molds and buckets.