This winter was beyond tough. The week McKenzie was born, the same week of the Polar Vortex, we lost 500 chickens and six goats due to the extreme cold. We were devastated. The emotional heartbreak of the loss…there just aren’t words. Then the spring waters came. Our property sits like a sieve of a funnel. Hills of neighboring properties surround us. Which, diverted all the rain and spring run-off right into our coops… we lost another 50 chickens and have months of work ahead of us to repair damage from the amount of rushing water that flowed through our property. After the heartbreak of losing life, we began to calculate the financial loss. Over $69,000! The kicker is that we are small farmers. According to the state of Nebraska and Washington County, we don’t even come close to being recognizable based on Animal Units (A.U.). Last October, when we bought the property, we inquired about farm insurance to cover the loss of crops and animals. We were told we were too small to qualify. So… as small farmers, the loss comes out of our pockets. There is no government or state assistance for small/beginning farmers.