While Serenity in the Suburbs continues its "summer vacation," I'd love it if you'd visit my newest blog which chronicles our adventures in helping Bryan start up his new farm, the Farm on the Hill! The blog is called "Farm Beginnings," and you can find it HERE. Stop by and say howdy!
I'm grateful for the folks who have commented here over the years, and have encouraged me, especially recently. Thanks for visiting! I'll continue to visit my usual blog-stops, but Serenity in the Suburbs is closing down for the summer in a few days. This blogger is "spent." Selah.
Bryan moves into his farmhouse in about 3 weeks, and I will be a summer houseguest who helps him clean, paint, organize, cook, and eat. I'll leave the heavy outdoor labor to him and his brother and their young friends :-D Once his website is operational, I'll post it here, and share it with you!
Life certainly has its chapters. My blog here has made twists and turns, but primarily it has been a family story. I started this blog because I had one special story that God put on my heart to share...it was (is) a story of His great faithfulness, of His perfect plan, and of His ability and kindness to do more than we can ask or even think. My blog began with part one of, "I Wish I Could Go To A Farm." It is the story of a young boy from the mega-suburbs of Chicago, and his relentless desire to pursue a place he had never been to...a real farm.
For the last 13 years, he has pursued his dream. And now, finally, the dream has become a reality.
On Friday, April 19th, Bryan signed the contracts and closed the real estate deal...he is now the blessed and thrilled-beyond-belief owner of the Farm on the Hill, located in southwestern Wisconsin! Since he is allowing the current owners to stay in the home until their high school age children finish their school year, he will not move in until June. But the farm is his, and the dream has become a reality!
Jeremiah 29:11 says, " 'For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity, to give you a future and a hope.' " It is the verse that Kevin and I chose for Bryan when he was born as his "life verse." God put His plan in Bryan's heart, inexplicably so as far as I could understand, when he was just eight years old. I didn't know any farmers. But God did. God knows lots of farmers. And now, my son is one of them.
A look back at this amazing path God had us on, and a look at the farm in Wisconsin which Bryan now owns and will be moving to this June...
The petting zoo at our County Fair...the only place I could think of to take him when he said he wanted to go to a REAL farm!
Nowhere else Bryan wanted to be...day and night he was there!
Age 10: Bryan spends five days and nights at The Country School Farm in Amish Ohio...this is where the real spark happened,
and a childhood vision began to take hazy shape.
He would return here for two more summers, and fall more in love with this life.
Kline Creek Farm...the spark ignites into a flame, and the vision becomes clearer. Bryan would spend about 8 years volunteering at this living history museum and farm, and would be a staff member for a summer during college.
The Farmstead B-Inn-B...where Bryan realized that he did NOT want to be a dairy farmer after all... it was the sheep he wanted to work with.
Bryan starts his knife sharpening business at age 15, and begins to save for the incredibly expensive farm start-up he dreams about...
Harvest Home Farm in Whitehall, Wisconsin...
Bryan's vision of sustainable, pasture-based, organic sheep farming comes into focus, and the radical learning shift away from the industrial model begins.
The degree in Agriculture Production and Farm Management
...a good thing to have, but the real learning would happen away from the college which taught the industrial model of agriculture, something Bryan wants little, if anything, to do with.
(Photo courtesy of Christine Anne)
Preparation for the REAL world of sustainable farming...
Three fabulous days and nights, living and working at Polyface Farm, despite being incredibly sick with the flu!
Followed by 7 months of internship at
Sap Bush Hollow Farm in NY
After he finally returned home, the hunt for a farm was on in earnest!
A little classified ad on a Rodale site led us to the 40 acre property which Bryan would ultimately purchase and name the
"But one inclusion in particular is especially controversial. The “biotech rider” would require the USDA to approve the harvest and sale of crops from genetically modified seed even if a court has ruled the environmental studies on the crop were inadequate. This aspect of the bill infuriated many sustainable food and agriculture groups, who nicknamed the bill the “Monsanto Protection Act.” If signed into law by President Obama, here’s what the rider would do: ..." Read the rest of this brief but informative article HERE. And please sign the petition that is to be sent to the President...do it NOW!!!