April 13, 2010

moving on

Alright, well thank you for listening to my depressing, emotional rant the other day and for your encouraging words. It was really more like therapy for me and I felt instantly better. I only hope I didn't depress all of you as a result.
So, moving on . . . Spirits have been lifted, farm want-ads have been posted and we are on our way to finding what we want. I think the hardest part for us is being ok with taking the time to discover the right farm or the right situation for us instead of pushing ourselves to make a decision right now. It's hard to be idle but this is a big decision and one that is worth taking the time to make sure it's exactly what we want.
What exactly do we want? Well, I'll try to put it into words. I think it goes without saying that we would like to work towards having our own farm someday but we're open to lots of different scenarios. If we could win the lottery and buy the original Wolf Lake Farm, well, then I wouldn't be writing this. But until then...
We have some great ideas for a farm and most important of those ideas is that it be an educational farm. Something interesting that came out of our first years farming is that we discovered that we LOVED having visitors on the farm. It wasn't just because we were starving for human contact...which, don't get me wrong, most of the time we were. But we just loved showing folks around and explaining how and why we do things the way we do. We loved watching the expressions on people's faces when we walked into a field and all of the chickens came running to greet us, or watching someone hold a chicken for the first time or a child getting to walk right up to the lambs and pet them. Most importantly, helping to bridge the gap between people and their food gave us a feeling that is simply beyond words. That's how it should be. You should be able to visit the place where your food is raised. There should be no secrets and you should walk away feeling good about supporting that farmer and about feeding that food to your loved ones. I know I've mentioned Polyface Farm before and that's exactly what we'd like to have someday.

The logistics of this idea depend on a farm that's easy to get to from the city (less than an hour) so people are willing to make the drive and a place for us to live, preferably private. Nate did a great job describing what we're looking for in one of the ads we posted:

"This farm might already have fencing on it, water in the form of wells and/or a pond, and relatively flat land, well-suited to moving poultry and growing crops. This farm should be beautiful, or at least have the potential for beauty and be the type of place conducive to becoming a production/educational farm to teach children about how important our food system is. My wife and I would ultimately want to have a farm whereby it would draw together a community of people who want to learn about healing a broken food system."

If you'd like, keep your fingers crossed along with us and we'll be sure to let you all know how things progress.

Thanks for hanging in there with us and for keeping us company on this wild ride.

April 9, 2010

i cried in my bagel this morning.

I'm hoping you'll allow me this hopeless moment and let me vent a bit.
We're bummed. There is no quick and easy fix for our situation and that just blows. It blows that what we want to do with our lives is so hopeful and that we can feel so hopeless right now. The timing blows. It's Spring and we should be on a farm doing stuff. Sure we could find the perfect situation soon and get right into it, but we've already lost so much time. It's hard to imagine getting settled anywhere in time to participate in the 2010 season. bah.
I'll tell you what else blows. A married couple going through something like this is not easy. I know this is true with all kinds of emotional trauma and that ours cannot begin to compare with most. Each person is feeling their own pain and frustration making it hard to think of anything else. Or anyone else. Even their partner who is going through the very same thing. That makes for 2 very sad and lonely people. We need to take better care of each other. Especially now.
I cried in my bagel this morning and it made me think. See, there is still a lot I leave out of this blog because it's so public and because it's sort of a 'farm blog' which means it's not really about me. I'm always proofreading my posts thinking, "What would one of our customers think?" or "Would this make me think twice about letting these people raise my food?" But, you know what? We're real human beings and we're going through something very real here. We're trying to achieve something and it's a struggle and I want to share all of the feelings that go along with it, not just the upbeat and happy ones.
Don't get me wrong, folks. All is not lost as we do have options. They're just very different from what we had planned and yes, I know, different is not always bad. It's just different. Is it crazy to think that after 2 years of farming we could have our own farm? Absolutely. So how can we find a way to continue gaining experience on a farm and to try out some ideas while having the very basics, like an income and a roof over our heads? Well, that's our mission.
Thanks for listening. Coming soon....what exactly do we want? Well, I'll try to spell it out in a post in hopes that the universe can better hear our request loud and clear.

April 2, 2010