PITTSFIELD, Maine (WABI) - It started with a joke-
Mark Mancini told his wife they should get goats to help with yard work.
Today, the two military veterans have ? goats along with plenty of other animals on their almost 10 acres of property./
Joy Hollowell takes us to Waggin' Tail Farm in Pittsfield.
Carrie and Mark Mancini purchased their Pittsfield house in 2011. The following year, they got married here
"Yes, right under that pergola," says Carrie, pointing it out.
Shortly after saying I do, the couple found out they were both being deployed.
"We had two goats and we said- we're enjoying this, maybe while we're gone we can plan our farm," says Carrie.
And they did- Skyping each other with designs and dimensions. A woman in Mark's unit whose an artist, created a logo for their farm.
"It helped keep us connected while we were gone," says Carrie. "And it helped keep us hopeful, looking toward the future and give us a purpose for when we come home. And when we came back, we built the barn and started the farm, that was in 2014."
Today, the Mancinis have close to 70 farm animals.
"6 alpaca, 15 rabbits, 3 pigs, 32 goats, 1 cat, 5 dogs and two chickens," says Carrie, reading off a list on her phone.
There are also five recently acquired cows. The livestock are used for making yarn, soap, and for meat which the Mancinis sell. And every single one of their animals has a name.
"Even though it's harder for us to let them go when it's time to send them to slaughter, we know that they had a really good life and a lot of waggin tails," says Carrie.
And speaking of Waggin' tails, it was one of their dogs that led to the farm's name.
"She was a shelter dog with a troubled past," explains Carrie. "So when we brought her here to look at this place, it's the first time we had seen her wag her tail."
Mark is often seen wearing his camouflage kilt around the farm.
"I'm sort of known as the kilted farmer," says Mark with a grin. The Mancini's patriotism can also be seen in dozens of dog tags hanging from the corner of their front porch next to the American Flag.
"The dog tags are for fallen military members from all branches of Maine killed in the last two decades," says Mark. Some of those names are brothers he knew.
"This is where our girls are," says Mark, opening the barn door to reveal a gangle of goats.
In addition to animals, the Mancinis are growing grapes and other fruit to make their own wine and other beverages. There's also a greenhouse growing vegetables. Mark says plans are in place to expland their pasture land. It's a lot going on, but the Mancinis says running a farm is similar to serving in the U.S. Air Force and Army.
"A lot of our training that we got from the military has come in really handy," explains Carrie. "We can operate heavy equipment, we can make a plan and a strategy and get things done."
Their favorite spot is on the porch, sipping their homemade Mead and taking in the panoramic view of their dream come true.
"We start and end our day, pretty much right here on the rocking chairs," says Carrie. "We can pretty much see the whole farm from here."
For more information on Waggin' Tail Farm, you can log onto https://www.waggintailfarmme.com/