Saturday, June 12, 2010

How we Became Farmers - Chapter 1

The number 1 question I get asked is "did you grow up on a farm" or "were your parents farmers".

No- to both questions. However, my grandmothers all had gardens - I had 3 grandmothers because my mother died when I was very young and so my father remarried when I was 3. So I was lucky enough to watch 3 different women cultivate 3 very different gardens. Our family had a garden but it really didn't work out that well as no one weeded it. I hated weeding (still do).

Mike's grandfather was a conventional farmer so his mother did grow up on a farm but he grew up a city kid taking the bus when he was 8 years old (by himself).

What people really want to know is "why on earth did you decide to buy a farm and become a farmer?"

That's the question-- Why?

Before we were farmers we lived in a nice little house in a little neighborhood and had a nice porch and 4 above ground garden beds. We traveled a lot and had an above average amount of disposable income. I'd say we were living a very comfortable upper middle class lifestyle. We ate out at nice restaurants, we watched a lot of TV and in general we had a lot of free time to just sit around with our friends and just talk and eat and socialize.

One day, I read about something called a CSA- community supported agriculture.
Sounds interesting.

It was going to be a 35 min drive one-way to the farm but we could also get an egg share and how cool would it be to eat fresh eggs. I've heard that they are better for you I told Mike.

Ok, let's sign up. With a CSA you pay for being in the share ahead of time and you then share in the rewards and the risks of the farm. Sounds interesting and we'd be supporting a local farmer, how bad can it be? So we sent in the check-- $680 later we were signed up for 20 weeks of a CSA plus a 20 week egg share. Cool.

Little did we know that this $680 check was the check that completed the intergalactic connections and our fate was sealed.....

to be continued.....


Anonymous said...

Well, our first CSA venture resulted in kale, collard greens and scapes for about 2 months (and some radishes). We were splitting a share with another couple (never met the farmer) and the season was incredibly wet, so it was our bad luck (and the farmer's!)
Meanwhile we would shop at the Farmer's Market whenever possible. After a few years we tried again and had much better luck. Now it's all good. The chance we take with the farmer is worth it, because now I know who he is and there is some variety.
Steve and I are very glad you started this journey as Emory really enjoys seeing "Farmer Mike" and we like eating your pigs, chickens and eggs :) And I have your farm to thank for starting me with chicken-keeping.
Thank you!

Toni aka irishlas said...

I for one am glad you choose the path of farmer..

SteveandAlina said...

Can't wait to read Chapter 2 and the rest of this juicy story! Your blog definitely inspired us to sign up for our first local CSA out here in IL.... our first pick up will be 6/25.

Website Translation said...

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Maria Mcclain said...

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Draven Ames said...

We don't have enough farmers where I live anymore. Most of the city has been taken over by new apartments or houses and companies. Our town was once very beautiful but now it is growing out of control. I would love to live on a farm. When I was a kid we had chickens, goats, ducks and everything else. It was an amazing experience. Your writing is very fluid and I enjoyed your blog, not just about what you wrote, but how you wrote it. Keep in touch and hope to see you around my blog sometime. Have a wonderful day.

iik said...

nice share