Shearing Sheep

This week the weather in NoVA has been phenomenal.  We rearranged our plans in order to have the whole day to go gallivanting all over Loudoun County, driving with the windows down and exploring nooks and crannies we hadn’t previously discovered.


We started off the day with Sheep Shearing at Fields of Athenry.  The farm was open for it’s annual event and we toured the grounds, enjoyed the animals, picked up a couple items and then ate a wonderful, fresh lunch over their open flame BBQ.




The boys enjoyed seeing an alpaca, a barn cat, a goat, turkeys, chickens, geese and tons of sheep!

I grabbed a shot of Matt “lifting weights.”

As we were leaving the farm, Cole shouted to the sheep, “Eat ya later!” which sent us all into riotous laughter.
So of course, after we got home from our all day excursions, we put some lamb on the grill.


Add feta for more Mediterranean flavors if you eat cheese or put a pat of butter into the center of your burger (before fully forming) to infuse this naturally lean meat with amazing juiciness and flavor.

Measuring and mixing items is a great way to get your kids to help.  We choose to take the opportunity to discuss how mint grows in the garden, why it came back now that Spring was here and how healthy the lamb was that we were eating – since we’d just visited their lovely farm.

While at Athenry, we decided to get some good quality pastured butter to see how it would integrate into our diets (jury’s still out, but no issues thus far).  We enjoyed it with a tiny sprinkle of palm sugar on our roasted sweet potatoes.  Yum!

We pulled this dinner together with no preparation (lamb was frozen) in 40 minutes – it was AMAZING and we’re so glad we didn’t grab dinner on the way home!

Mint Lamb Burgers


  • 2lbs ground lamb
  • 2T (heaping) fresh chopped mint (our herb garden just started yielding this week!)
  • 3 cloves chopped garlic
  • 1T cumin
  • 2t paprika


  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl (little hands are great for this). Shape into thick patties, grill to about 8 minutes on each side (138*), try not to handle too much so that they stay soft and tender. Remove from heat and serve (we recommend with lettuce and bacon). The mint adds a fresh, but not overwhelming flavor.
  2. Be sure to not overcook the burgers, lamb is a lean meat and can dry out easily! If you'd like them more well-done, we definitely recommend using the pat-of-butter-in-the-middle-of-the-burger-technique to ensure they remain moist. We'd rather you keep them a little more pink though, and we recommend using a digital meat fork thermometer . Makes 6 thick burgers.

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