Did I deliver or did I deliver? Ladies and gents, let me introduce you to the most energetic, animal-adoring, confident vlogger I delight in watching every day: Lumnah Acres!
Located in northern New Hampshire, Alcide Lumnah and family raise chickens, pigs, and utilize cattle panels to grow everything from trellising veggies to meat birds. I was initially impressed by Al’s work while watching the Lumnah Acres feature on the Great American Farm Tour. According to Rhodes, Al was utilizing chickens to restore an orchard. The family at Lumnah Acres was very passionate in sharing their knowledge and they just brimmed with confidence. Now they may not agree and say they were super nervous, but you sure fooled me, Lumnah Acres. Justin Rhodes and fans adored Al’s feature so much and participated greatly in the comments. Fans went so far as to suggest that Al name his coop New YOLK City! Joining Al on his modernsteading adventure is his daughter Olivia, a spunky kiddo who is not afraid to get her hands dirty!
Al truly attempts to connect with his audience and chats to the camera as if you’re really there watching him work. He’s also very good at developing husbandry between himself and his livestock. Al understands how his animals perceive their environment and is not afraid to show you how low to the ground a pig’s vision is. Having this knowledge was actually essential to me since I would have placed my wire fencing higher than usual by assuming pigs can look up to the sky, rather than just at the knee. All of my pigs would have escaped! Assuming I had pigs. Regardless, Al is also very practiced in mechanics and carpentry. He builds all of his cattle panel garden beds/coops/pig pens/chicken tractors/pig tractors. That’s a lot of slashes but honestly, a single cattle panel bed can and is utilized to perform all those listed functions!
I’ve got loads more to share! But hey, why don’t you hear it straight from Al himself:
How are you balancing your work life with your modernsteading life?
That is a hard one! When your passion is Modern Steading, but you need to make an income [that is]. Right now I am a sub contractor. So I have more control of the hours I work. I know it’s not my forever job and that we are bringing our Modern Homestead to a place where we can make a living with it. Some times it’s a daily reminder of that. Telling myself that we have to live and work like no one else now, so later on, we can live like no one else and make the change we want to see in the world. The best part about Modern Steading is that we get to do it as a family! I try to involve the whole family. I am not always perfect at that! I remind myself that we need to have fun while we are doing it too!
What is the biggest challenge of raising a child on the modernstead?
Trying to Raise Olivia to be engaged to want to help. We don’t want to force her to do things all the time! She is a kid so sometimes we need to be the parent and Parent. But we want to instill the passion of it into her. Not make Olivia hate it. That goes back to keeping it fun.
Why cattle panels?
The reason I use cattle panels is they are light weight and so versatile! I can keep my pigs in with them, build chicken tractors out of them, stack my wood under them, trellis my vegetables with them, make mini green houses, and when we are pouring a concrete slab we can use them instead of rebar! Haha! I always have a couple extra here so when I want to use one I am ready.
How has modernsteading helped with your anxiety?
The big reason we Modern stead is to grow the best most nourishing food that we can. What we eat plays a huge role in how we feel. A lot of the good food we should be eating is not easily accessible. Either the government has made it illegal to buy or it is very expensive. I don’t like to be put in a box like that. When I am, I start thinking of solutions! Modern Steading is that [solution] for me.
We raise our own pasture raised eggs, chickens for meat and pigs. We have a garden too. There is so much more we want to do, and we will, but we need to pace ourselves. We don’t want to get burnt out and lose our passion! This goes for the readers too! If this is something you are dreaming of doing or are doing, remember: Rome wasn’t built in a day. Neither is your Modern Stead going to be. Be ok with that. Try a few new things a year and get good at them.
What are you looking forward to for your modernstead in the next four months? A year from now?
I hope you have a few! Haha, in the short term, we are very excited for our gardens to start producing! To be eating some nice beyond organic fruits and vegetables right out of our front yard! We are going to be moving our pigs out on pasture, and when this article is out they might be out too! We have some meat birds that will be ready to harvest soon. We don’t enjoy harvesting them but we enjoy the nourishing food they provide our family with. We want to respect the animals for that and raise them the way they are intended to be raised. Give them the best life possible and only one bad day.
We are building our Off Grid kitchen right now. Once we have that finished we will have a nice place to do our canning and animal harvesting. And a nice place to have friends and family over and share a nice meal with them. We will be hosting a class this October with Hand Hewn Farm on Pig Harvesting and Charcuterie making. Which I am really excited for. We are building up our Icelandic Chicken flock and we are breeding them to sell and grow our flock. [The Icelandic] the rarest breed of chicken, they forage really well, and one of the big things is they LIKE snow!
Being in Northern New Hampshire — that’s a big deal. In the long term, we want to start reclaiming more of the old farm land here and be able to grow the animals we have at Lumnah Acres. We are looking to get dairy goats. Modern Steading is one of those things when once you start it’s hard to stop and there are some many ideas we can do. I could just sit here and give you a list a mile long but I want to make sure we have something to talk about in another blog post!
As always, be kind and tender to one another. Special thanks to Lumnah Acres for participating in our feature! We’re so happy to be working with such awesome folks!
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Image/GIF credit goes to Al Lumnah and Lumnah Acres.