Some of you may know me and my family through Virginia Lamb & Meats -- where each week we sell meat raised on our farm at the Dupont Circle Farmers Market in Washington, DC. I am a fifth generation farmer or at least that's as far back as the stories I remember go. I grew up when most people knew where their food came from. But that's just not the case anymore. Here I hope to reconnect food to its origins with stories from the farm. Some are stories from my childhood, others are as simple as getting you to champion white eggs (yes, they can be farm fresh too!) when our twelve little Leghorns are unselfishly out producing fifty other hens during the winter months. You'll find lots of recipes, photos, and the occasional gardening ramble here too. But most of all I hope you leave with a new found respect for real food.

Sep 062014

Dear Friends and Customers,

After much prayer and deliberation, we have decided not to return to the farmers markets for now. Please know this has not been an easy decision.

Over the past eight years our business grew from just selling cuts of lamb to a whole line of value added products as well as lamb, goat, beef, pork, and chicken. Although our sales continued to grow, we were spending so much time in the kitchen and getting ready for the markets that we didn’t have time to actually farm. And with continually raising feed/hay costs and processing fees, our profit margins didn’t allow for hiring outside help.

Two years ago we had our worst lambing season ever. Between the weather, our ewe base getting old (because we were harvesting everything born), and burning the candle at both ends, we lost a third of our lambs. We finally had to admit we were spread too thin.

The second reality check was that we were so busy we had let our competition in the show ring out pace us. Our first love has always been showing sheep and selling breeding stock. And now the kids were just getting by in the show ring. We have spent this summer visiting sheep breeders at national sales and rejuvenating our breeding stock with key purchases. We have also begun to complete off all those much needed projects that get put on the back burner when there are not enough hours in the day.

We still believe in the power local agriculture and greatly appreciate all of your support these past eight years. We will be offering half and whole lambs for sale in the fall. Please contact us if you are interested.

We can not tell you how much you have meant to use over the years — you have become like family!

With our sincerest thank you,

Corey and Janet Childs & family

 Posted by at 7:20 pm
May 312013


The past several months have been jam packed with activity. Between finishing up school, coaching soccer, lambing, and the farmers markets there has been little time to play. And what’s life without a little play time. So I decided to take a couple of half days off and drive down back country roads snapping photos. Ah, what total bliss!


 Posted by at 7:23 am
May 272013

Vegetable Garden

With the cool spring we have had, everything in the garden seems way behind, okay, including me! We are finally getting lettuce, radishes, onions, spinach, and kale on a regular basis. Our peas and broccoli are coming along nicely and with any luck our cucumbers, tomatoes, egg plants, and squash seedlings will begin to take off. Fingers crossed.

 Posted by at 6:23 pm
Apr 142013

traditional-lamb-stir-fryWith soccer season in full swing our family schedule is busier than ever.

And with everyone going in different directions, cooking dinner has become a shared responsibility. Needless to say, dishes that are both easy and filling are big hits with everyone in our house, especially the chef!

(add or subtract vegetables to your liking and/or what you have on hand.)


Traditional Lamb Stir-Fry

  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons red wine or water
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 teaspoons peanut oil
  • 1 pound American Lamb leg, cut into strips
  • 3 medium carrots, finely diced
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced diagonally
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup snow peas, trimmed
  • 3 cups shredded cabbage
  • 1 can (8 ounces) sliced water chestnuts, drained
  • 6 green onions, sliced diagonally
  • 1 can (2 ounces) diced pimento, drained
  • Hot cooked rice

  1. Toast seeds in wok; set aside.
  2. In small bowl, combine soy sauce, wine, garlic, ginger, cornstarch, pepper and cayenne. Set aside.
  3. Heat wok or large skillet; heat oil. When hot, add lamb strips; stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add carrots, celery and mushrooms; stir-fry with lamb for an additional 2 minutes. Remove lamb and vegetables from wok; keep warm. Add soy sauce mixture to wok; stir until mixture begins to thicken. Immediately add lamb and cooked vegetables; add pea pods, cabbage, chestnuts, onions and pimento. Stir-fry for 2 minutes.
  4. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and serve with hot cooked rice.


 Posted by at 1:02 am
Apr 072013


As many of you know, last fall I fell and broke both feet and was immobile for several months. It didn’t take long spending that much time stuck inside before it felt like the walls were collapsing in. All our possessions became stuff, just smothering clutter. I craved open space and simple surroundings.

As soon as I was back on my feet I began cleaning, giving away, selling, and trashing everything that was neither necessary nor loved. My mission to declutter the house soon became a mission to simplify life. And soon I realized it was time to take my philosophy of sustainable farming and transfer it to sustainable living. The question became, what could I make or grow that would require less dependency on weekly shopping while continuing to live a good life?

While I was totally excited to be making my own laundry detergent, I fear my family thinks I have gone crazy. That was until I told them how little I spent on ingredients and how well it worked. Ha! Who is laughing now!

Laundry Detergent

  • 1/3 bar Fels Naptha
  • 1/2 cup washing soda
  • 1/2 cup borax powder

Bring 4 quarts of water to a soft boil. Meanwhile grate a 1/3 a bar of Fels Naptha soap. Reduce heat to medium, add grated soap and stir until soap completely melts.

Add the washing soda and borax and stir until dissolved. Remove from heat.

Add quarts of cold water to clean bucket. Add hot soap mixture and stir. Let the soap sit for 24 hours or until slightly gelled.

Store in gallon container. Use 1/3 to 1/2 cup per load.

 Posted by at 12:24 am
Apr 012013

What a crazy March this has been! We finally got our spring vegetables, including peas, kale, beets, carrots, radishes, and more lettuces planted in the garden this weekend. But looking back at the past couple of weeks, you have to wonder if winter is finally over.

Early Morning Snowfall

Early Morning Snowfall

Early Morning Snowfall

Early Morning Snowfall

Our last winter storm?




 Posted by at 12:41 am
Mar 272013


1. To choose open pollinating vegetables whenever possible so I can save seeds for next year.

2. To sow seeds indoors and grow my own transplants.

3. To focus on herbs with both culinary and medicinal roles.

4. To harvest and dry herbs for teas, soap, and salves.

5. To freeze and preserve fruits and vegetables from the garden.


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 Posted by at 2:01 am