Wednesday, February 20, 2013

the 2013 season

It usually takes us until about mid January before we are settled down enough to begin to think about the year ahead. This year it has taken a little longer. We have been contemplating some dramatic changes in our personal and professional lives. It is with great trepidation that we have decided to not make veggie deliveries to Cookeville this year.

For a number of years we have been trying to find a balance of what really works in our farming adventure. As many of you know, our land base is quite small. The total space of our gardens is a little less than one acre, and there's not really any room left to expand. Because of this, there are efficiencies of scale in farming that we cannot take advantage of. So, we have tended to work our little space quite intensively. The soil continues to improve and the food is good, but the process ends up working us hard too (maybe we should say 'too hard'). The year we tried having an intern was helpful, but that too was difficult in our small space.

We have been looking for a larger farm for about five years now, but haven't found one that feels just right. We seek land that will allow us to expand our farming operation without sacrificing the natural beauty and the amenities that we appreciate at our current home. The plan is to spend more time looking for a new farm this year, regroup, and hopefully be back in a year or two.

That said, our hearts are heavy. It has been wonderful to be CSA growers. We have so much appreciated the relationships we've made with each of you over the years. We love tending to the land, growing food, and sharing quality food with the Cookeville community. We will continue to work our land, less intensively, and your invitation to visit the farm – even to get food from our gardens – is still standing. It's just time for us to make some changes, and some changes really take time.

Thank you for the time we've spent. We hope you continue to eat well, and hope to see you again, one of these fine days.

Warm regards,

Paul, Coree, Lulah, and Levon Entwistle

PS - We will persist to keep some updates posted on the blog and Facebook sites, and you can also check out the blog that Coree is working on with some friends:  Thank you!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

silver linings

There's nothing like a family illness to make one grateful for the return to health.  The days slowed down, and they're still not up to their usual clip.  Intense variable weather helps keep us moving slower too.

And in the meantime...

I dreamt, in the first night of good sleep I'd had for awhile, that I was not just knitting but purling.  I'm not an accomplished knitter (yet), and so far, purling has evaded me.  My sister in law tried to show me, and my friend Cher tried to show me, but it just didn't click.  So when I saw my hands purling in the dream world, I woke with a new urge to TRY.

With books laid out, kids absorbed in books and naptime, a new skein of beautiful red merino wool from Traditions Fabric and Yard in Lafayette (love them), I tried, and it worked.  I'm not consistent yet, but I'm fascinated.  No one could have told me how absorbing the repetitive action and creation of knitting would feel.  I love the challenge, and the satisfying success, of it.

Lulah working on her
Levon and Dougie sporting new pants.
So, since I was on a roll, Lulah and I started up the sewing machine and worked up some projects long overdue.  Dougie Doll, made a year ago for Levon, still has no hair (poor little guy), but at least he has pants now.  And Levon has pants to match.  It does a mother's heart good to see her two year old son working hard to put on the pants she just made for him (out of a salvaged flannel shirt, yippee!).

Most of what we share on here is about the farm, the outdoors, and food.  But here's our inner craftiness coming through.  It's a silver lining in these quiet, grey, winter days.  It's a way for our spirits to recover, along with our bodies.