November 26, 2013


I sit here on a cold and snowy day, cozy in front of the wood stove, while my husband and son both sleep peacefully. There's a certain calm that washes over me when they're both asleep. Like all is right with the world. Everything is quiet, and I'm left to think about and do the things I can't do when I have others to worry about and care for. My own time.

And so I sit here, thinking. . .

It feels like we've been searching for a farm for forever. Six years, to be exact. Though that seems a long time, I'm grateful for it. I'm so glad we didn't buy a farm sooner. During that time we've lived on several different farms, made many mistakes and had many major accomplishments. We've learned so much about ourselves, animals, farms and living and working with other people. Our needs, wishes and desires for a farm have changed so much over time. And so has the place we call home.

We've often wondered about searching elsewhere for a farm. There's the issue of drilling for gas that's been sweeping the state and that has us concerned for it's effects on our air, soil and water. But there's something else.

Part of what drew us in to sustainable farming was that it's a common thread that brings good people together, like a big family. People working hard for a cause that's important and true to their hearts. No one knows hard work, loss and sacrifice like a farmer. And no one knows the joy and pride in feeding your family the vegetables, meat, milk and eggs you raised, or in aiding in the birth of an animal, or nursing an animal back from near death all on your own like a farmer. There's an unspoken camaraderie among fellow farmers.

But lately, in all we've seen and experienced, we haven't been feeling that love and camaraderie. It's there, but not as strong for us right now. Maybe we're jaded by all we've been through and maybe part of is it us, but we haven't felt like farmers are loving and helping each other and we often find ourselves thinking about other farming communities. New York, Oregon, Vermont, Maine. Perhaps another country? It's exciting and scary, both at the same time, to think of starting over somewhere new. There are times we feel we're ready to move on from Pennsylvania, but there's one thing that anchors us here: our family.

We both have mothers who live alone and deal with physical challenges, and we have my father and other family close by as well. It just doesn't feel like the right time to leave. We've had struggles and celebrated victories and our family has been there through it all. When farming was just a dream and we weren't sure we could pull it off, they were there encouraging us. Each time we've fallen, they've helped us up, brushed us off, and given us the push we needed to go on. They wouldn't let us give up. We're so grateful for their love and support. And now we have a son to share with them. When I was little, we lived far away from my grandparents and I didn't see them very often. I love that Zander knows his grandparents and that they know him so well. What a gift.  

With that important decision made, we know it's time to find a place where we can begin to put all of our love and energy into starting our real dream. It's taken time and lots and lots of careful searching, but we may actually be close to buying a farm.We have one in our sights. We've been this close before and it's fallen through. Fingers and toes crossed. We need all of the love and light we can get right now.

We just might be able to make this happen.