We stuck Amanda out in the road to have her picture taken with our sign.
You can see her opinion of such a fool-hardy action very plainly on her face!
While the Farm has been in the family for over 30 years, we didn't try to actually 'farm' it until 1987. A fire destroyed my business in Southbridge and that gave me the opportunity to make a change in lifestyle and find different ways to earn money on the farm.
We started out sort of 'whole hog', with pigs, horses and beef cattle. Then we added the Greenhouse and the Sugarhouse. There are lots of creative ways to use farm land that are not strictly the traditional dairy farms and grain crops. Anyone with a small farm can find a good number of different ways to utilize the land that allow you to keep it zoned as a farm, and green space, and yet have it fit in with our half regular work and half hobby farm life styles. You can grow apples or pumpkins, have a corn maze for some late summer and fall fun, raise Christmas trees, and many other kinds of new ideas. Some good links about diversity for family farms and 4H are below:
The USDA's Partial List of Diversification Products
The Escobar's Dairy Farm and Corn Maze in Rhode Island
4H State Sites
USDA Extension Agencies
Help Save Rare Breeds of Farm Animals for a Better Tomorrow
One Person CAN Make a Difference!
Raising Rare Breeds
These are just a few examples to get you started. For anyone wanting to live the good life, have a hobby farm and a wholesome part time job and all the benefits of living close to Nature and spending time out doors, there are many other wonderful internet sites to explore. We hope these will help you get going.
You know, there are all sorts of folks talking about values, family values, and things of this sort. There is probably no better way of solidly grounding growing children than having them learn first hand the wonder of birth, or plants sprouting, and the results of loving care or neglect. In Nature, actions always have consequences. The value of each life, plant, animal or human can be learned better on a Farm than anywhere else.
While this is at the end of the page, the Last Word, so to speak, it is really the most important factor in our little enterprise here on the Farm. I must thank my wife Karen . . . without her support, her full time job in the city, and her support at home, we could never have made this whole Farm project work. Karen often has her own booth at the fairs and shows we attend with apple ring crafts and dried plants and other items.
Thank you, Karen.