Hello friends,

Well.. just like that… it’s officially fall!  We had our first of several frosts over the weekend with 70 degree weather during the day…. craziness.  We’ve been closely watching the weather and a frost was anticipated, at some point in time, but has come a week early compared to last year.  We’ve also had the driest summer and fall in over 50 years so that definitely has something to do with it as well.  Needless to say, as farmers, we are looking forward to a little cloud cover and some rain in the coming weeks..

The bountiful crate.  We are working extra hard to preserve our summer crops that were once flourishing and are now no longer fruiting and in quick decline.  Our barn is full of all kinds of peppers, green tomatoes, eggplant and melons in hopes of keeping them in regulated temperatures, and out of the sun for as long as we can.  Unfortunately for the fruits, their companion plants look like they are waving tiny little black flags.  The flower garden has also turned from all colors in the rainbow to a sea of brown.  But as farmer Brian so eloquently said upon finding our sad summer crops a few mornings ago, “an early frost comes and mercy is extended to only a select few. My heart hurts. All the hard work, the splits in our hands, the late nights trying to protect them from the inevitable, all for not. But this is the way life is. The heart resides in the pursuit.”

A bittersweet time.  This time of the year is most bittersweet for those foods we long to have all winter & spring.  Crops we sometimes wait 8 months or more for…  We’ve been scurring around our nest this past month, trying to fill the pantry with canned, fermented & dried goods, in hopes that we can enjoy the summer bounty year round.  To remind us of the sun filled flavors of the garden when we’re deep with in the gray dampness that winter brings.  But in just one morning they are all gone.  8 months of cultivation.  Bounty.  Nourishment.  Some go silently while others hold strong and see how many cold nights they can take.

A reflective time.  After a walk through the garden at first light, I found myself overwhelmed and had to lie down in the grass to watch our big pine tree blow in the gusty breeze.  I noticed upon it newly formed pine cones just waiting to be released in hopes of spreading it’s seed.  It made me think of how bountiful our efforts have been this season.  That we couldn’t work any harder or with any more love than we did this year.  We gave it everything and in turn the crops had everything they needed to feed so many families & friends (over 200 when all is said and done).  It’s a reflective time of year for all of us.  When the seasons change, our habits change and sometimes even our appearance.  I’m sure as the next weeks unfold we’ll all reminisce about the bountiful season that’s almost behind us.  How it made us feel, how it’s changed our habits, lifestyle and overall quality of life.  And as much as we’ll miss it, we welcome the rains, the change of season, all of it.  Though our hearts will miss the bounty and the sunshine it is our bodies that yearn for less hours of daylight and time for practicing new hobbies, reading more books, hunkering down in our crafts, planning for next year & getting better at what we do.

Your Savings.  Did you guys know that by signing yourselves up for the 2012 CSA season for fresh picked, nutrient rich, organically grown produce you also saved a lot of money at the grocery store?  We broke it down each week in order to see just how much you saved over the course of 20 weeks.  As the season got going and the crate became more bountiful and diverse you also started to save money.  $293 dollars to be exact.  We say the cost of the CSA breaks down to $31.25 per week (which is then divided by 2 – 3 people) but around week 7 the crates changed and only kept changing as the week’s continued.  Turning that $31.25 into as high as $55.00 (and you all have the muscles to prove it… those crates have been pretty heavy these past few months).  That $293 is not just money to be saved but a commitment that you can feel proud about.  You made the choice for you and your family to know where your food was grown and whom it was grown by.  You chose to support this young farm and be apart of it’s growth and it’s only going to get better.  We are dedicated to this craft and to feeding you and your families.  Handing off that crate full of veggies to you is our privilege and seeing your faces light up upon receiving fresh VEGETABLES never gets old.  Hearing how you’ve been cooking more and feeling fit and happy is what it’s all about.  It’s all incredibly rewarding.

Fall CSA.  If you’ve signed up for our Fall CSA expect an email of greetings soon!  We’re so happy that you have chosen to take this adventure of 6 more weeks with us.  We’ve never done this before but it feels good to take the adventure with some really good friends and community.  It’s the best kind of feeling.

And thanks again to everyone who was a part of the farm this year.  Whether you are one of our members, a volunteer, a farm stand regular or just someone who passes by and appreciates what we do…. we are better farmers knowing you all and it’s our goal to keep getting better, not bigger as time goes on.  You guys are the best.

We’ll see you all this week!  2 more to go!

Faithfully yours,

your farmers

dirty hands, clean hearts

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