Growing up in rural Arkansas, we have a great appreciation for the farming community. We feel this community supports all functions of life and society.
Andy and I both come from farming families. We met in high school and were married after Andy graduated college. We both went on to careers; his in agriculture, mine in education. In 1995 we began our family as our son Ben was born. In 2000, our daughter Matti rocked our world. We worked, the kids grew and the farm only maintained. These three things remained seperate for the most part. Our vision was for them to be entwined with love, appreciation and interdependence. So in 2004, we both quit our jobs and came home to the farm. I began homeschooling the children. Our lives began to flourish, as well as the kids. The missing piece was the farm. Using the conventional methods, it remained stagnant. Andy had been doing a lot of research on grass farming. I was doing a lot of research on health related topics, as cancer is very dominant in my family. Of course these two paths crossed. So in 2006, we began the process of changing genetics, fencing, etc. We have been emersed in grass farming ever since. We have a blessing now of our jobs, our kids and our farm, intertwined, flourishing, and supporting our goals for life, community and the future.
We give thanks to God Almighty, who has blessed us beyond our understanding. HE is the reason for life and has given it abundantly.
As we began to learn more about grass farming, better beef followed. We began to market our beef, pork and lamb to customers through farmer's markets. These markets were not close nor were they large compared to most around the country. But they were filled with wonderful folks who love good food.
Soon we were expanding to serve a larger customer base that couldn't always make it to early morning markets. I began making deliveries to towns where these markets were. The miles began to add up on me and our vehicles. We were looking for a better way.
While attending a grazing conference with some great friends, we bandied about the idea of a brick and mortar store front for our products. We had so many ideas for all the tremendous farm products and were convinced the world needed them. Well, they are fabulous farm foods, practices and products. And the world really does need them for their health; both preventative and regenerative.
But our small part of the world didn't agree. We opened and closed our small, artisan butcher shop stocked with animals humanely raised and crafted from our farms only a short 15 months apart. I could have continued our deliveries at a furious pace, but our farms, families and health were suffering.
We never quit raising grass fed beeves. We never quit raising grass fed sheep. We no longer have pigs or goats. Maybe we did learn something and are smarter now!
We have added some new friends to our farm, the smartest insect in the world, honeybees. We have 8 hives. We help care for another 3. Honey is the main source of sugar at our farm table. We use it everyday!
Andy is deeply connected to the land. He has immersed himself in the permaculture world, the world of forest gardening.
I see many fruits in our future. Many of them will be edible.