Sunday, May 18, 2014

Meet Your Farmer: Part 1

One of THE best parts of being a member of a CSA is getting to know your farmer.

So over the next couple weeks I will take the time to introduce you to our farming family.

First up: Me!

Hi I'm Martie and I am the voice behind the blog. I am wife to Eric, mom to Trevor (11), Anna (8), and Grady (6).

I grew up on my grandfather's farm in Lower Alloway's Creek. There I learned at a young age how to work: hoe a field of squash, pick, pack and deliver produce, drive tractor. We worked a lot of hay and straw. I spent my summers throwing bales in the hot sweaty hay maul and I loved it. Maybe not loved every hot sticky scratchy moment but I enjoyed being outside setting out to bale a field and in the end having a barn full of hay to show for it. I will be forever grateful to my Grandad for taking the time to train me up to not shy away from farm work.

When I entered high school I met this dreamy guy with long curly hair who would later become my husband. He was a farm kid and after dating him for almost 2 years I asked if I could get a job on their farm. I loved working for Grandad, but the work was sporadic and I needed a good steady summer job.

There was a big  difference from working on my Grandad's sleepy farm which was a slower pace (think water breaks where you get Grandad talking and the story lasts 40 minutes) to a bustling farm with 20 employees, trying to grow, pick and pack 170 acres of fresh produce to support a growing family. It was intense and I loved it.  It was fast paced and it was fun!

When Eric asked me to marry him (I said YES!) I was a student at Rowan University studying elementary education and he was at the University of Delaware studying Bioresources Engineering. It was at that time we decided we wanted to be full time farmers. We wanted to have a family and raise our kids on a farm. Every time we discussed the other possibilities, Eric getting a engineering job, myself teaching, we just didn't see that in our future. We dreamed of working together, working the land, and growing the best fresh produce. We were so excited about our future together on the farm, it was tempting to drop out of college, but with great persistence we finished our degrees while getting married in my sophomore year.

In 2007, we had an opportunity to build a house on the farm while expecting our third child and in need of a bigger house. We had only been living five miles away, so you might think it would not be that big of a difference, but this move transformed our relationship with the farm and with each other. Living on the farm means you're never far from work, for better or for worse. This is not just a job anymore, it's our life. It also means that we're never far from the ones we love. The kids can run out to see what Dad is doing in the field. Dad can stop in and steal a kiss from Mom when he likes. I am so blessed to have the opportunity to live this life and I wouldn't trade it for anything.

Thank you for letting us be your farmers.

1 comment:

  1. What a great story and love the tractor photo with the kids. My younger son is 5 and says he wants to be a farmer. I am definitely not a farmer and think I may have whatever the opposite of a green thumb is. I hope that as my son gets older to have him work on a farm to really see what it is all about. Can't wait to pick up our first bag of goodies this week.