We took a little time off Sunday afternoon to enjoy good friends and an all-terrain bocce ball tournament. We had three games going on with two 2-person teams each. The object is to 'bowl' the ball as close to the little white 'jack' (ball) for points; however, unlike formal bocce ball with a pristine court--we use the terrain of the yard and farm. And, the rule is that partners cannot come from the same house. We even had an audience--the four steer were quite interested in what we were doing and hoping for some food. Fred (Colvin Ranch) says the cows need to leave next week--they have done their job and there is little grass left for them. The deer must have heard about the cows getting ready to leave--two showed up last night in the front yard--yikes! Guard the beans!
Last Saturday was our first day to open the farm 'stand' for anyone who wanted to come. Setting up that morning was a little like being kids 'playing' farmers. How do we arrange the vegetables? Where do we put them? Will they hold up on the slightly sunny day? Who will come? And, what do we have available to sell and what do we need to keep for our subscriber boxes? We had a great time showing a few new people the farm and meeting a few more of our subscribers. A nice surprise was meeting Kerry who is co-owner of the Great Harvest Bread Company on the Westside. She came to trade cinnamon bread for vegetables. I KNOW we got the better end of that deal!
Our long-time family friend, Wendy Finney, came and spent the day with us on Saturday. She started babysitting our kids when she was in high school and has been a major, loving influence in the lives of our now young adult children. As it turns out, she is also a natural as a farm helper. We made dill pickles, planted beets, picked beans, weeded, and shoveled compost. When Rich, the beekeeper came to check on his bees, she continued on with the work while we gave him a quick tour of the farm. So far, Wendy is the only person who has made the cows moo. She kept feeding the cows weeds and when she stopped, Big Red let her know that he was not happy.
We had an open house for our subscribers last Saturday and the gate between the neighborhood behind us (Bridlewood) was open to let neighbors through for the first time. Our hope for the gate was to increase the accessability to the farm by neighbors, but more importantly to offer another option for physical activity to our neighbors. We were so pleased that the first people to come through actually rode their bikes--four kids and their mom and their neighbor. Huge kudos to Alida, the mom for encouraging and modeling the importance of physical activity. We also owe a thanks to Doris Sanders, the Bridlewood Neighborhood Association president and the Association for giving us permission to put the gate in. Doris and her family also used the gate last Saturday to visit the farm. The open house was hugely successful and we enjoyed giving farm tours and talking with our subscribers. We plan to open to anyone who wants to come on August 13.
This blog reflects the journey of Kathleen and Mark who have left suburbia to steward this historical property and transform the land back into a working farm.