“We have the world to live in on the condition that we will take good care of it. And to take good care of it we have to know it. And to know it and to be willing to take care of it, we have to love it.” – Wendell Berry

Hi Friends & Farm-ily,

The month of November is here. Quieter days and longer nights. The first few days of November have been absolutely beautiful – crisp, blue skies, sun showers and rainbows… the slight change of pace and weather has truly rejuvenated our spirits!  The first of the month also brought along daylight savings. We love starting the day earlier and heading in earlier – by 6pm! – which means an early dinner and farmer bedtime for us (two thumbs up). The change of daylight hours has us slowly adapting into new schedules… getting to animal chores earlier – around 4:30pm and buttoning up last minute farm chores before losing the last moments of light.   Instead of chasing the sun during the peak of summer (to avoid the excess heat) we now make the most of the hours that we have from sun up to sun down. With the change of the season it automatically carves about 4 hours off of our typical work day which is a much welcomed change of pace.

Our hearts and minds are gearing up for the 2016 season (there’s just so much to look forward to!) and now that November is here we are feeling ready to nest and write and look over notes and better prepare for the next growing season.   Even though this season felt like a slog at times and we were challenged more than ever by the relentless heat our spirits are feeling lifted and we are so excited to start planning for next year. For the first Fall ever we still have energy to give ourselves and this farm and it feels like a big success.


Part of it is for the first time this Fall, it actually feels like fall and we are loving it. The last few days of October brought the first real rainfall of the season. Over a 48-hour period we had almost an inch and a half fall from the skies. It saturated the ground, and gave your farmers a much needed break on Saturday afternoon. And the smell… the earth was alive with rich scents and sounds. The ground gurgled and the worms came to the surface. Our boots sloshed in the mud and we let out a huge sigh of relief.

During the rains I cooked up a storm. As you guys know we make it a priority to cook 3 meals a day even during the busy season. Eating well has a lot to do with how productive we’re able to be on the farm and we honestly don’t think we could keep up with everything if we didn’t eat well. Plus, it’s fun to create fresh homemade goodies and it’s delicious to boot. For inspiration, I went online to the WHF Members Page on Facebook to try out a few recipe suggestions there that were bookmarked in my mind. This West African Peanut Soup – to which I added turnips, carrots, sweet potato and bell pepper & this Spicy Sausage, Potato and Kale Soup. Both of which were absolutely delicious.


All throughout the season, the WHF CSA member’s page has been active and buzzing with many delicious recipes, helpful hints and encouragement. (Thank you to all our members for your continued participation and excellent efforts!) Way back in May, we posed a question to one of our 3rd year member’s and asked her what advice she would give herself as a 1st year member.  Here is one of the take a way she mentioned… “Make friends with your knife, cutting board, sink, dish towel, salad spinner, stove, and oven. They aren’t instruments of drudgery, they are keys to liberation. The time you spend prepping and cooking food is time to think and be present in the moment–“mindfulness” is a free benefit of CSA membership, so take advantage and enjoy it!” (for the rest of her sage advice check out the week 3 newsletter) We hope all of our members have enjoyed this free benefit of membership not to mention the many delicious meals that have been created and savored in all 110 households that our CSA program grows for.

Proud Farmer moment: So far we’ve distributed 680 lbs per weekly share which means by the end of the Spring/Summer CSA we will have distributed close to 800 lbs of food to each weekly share member. Which is a $1.47/lb for fresh, local, organic produce! All while supporting the ecosystem of this farm, two full time farmers by ensuring a livable wage, and the best possible produce you can find…Amazing! (FYI the price point for our veggies last year was $1.67 per pound of goodness. Your farmers are getting more efficient and learning quickly which contributes greatly to the lower price point this year!)


Remember when we shared this photo and fact at the beginning of the season?  This is exactly one pound of veggies. According to Michael Pollan if you eat 1 pound of fresh veggies every day you will reduce your chance of developing cancer by 50%.

For us, the Members Page is a really important component to our CSA. Hearing how everyone is utilizing all the fresh produce, pastured eggs, grass fed beef and pastured pork is an important part as it completes the circle. It acts as a window – in seeing how the fruits of our labour are being prepared. In the same way that our social media posts and newsletters provide a window into how your food is grown and harvested.   It’s part of the conversation that farmers love to be a part of but often times don’t get to experience. In our own insecurity we wonder, “Is our produce being eaten? Are folks cooking more often? What are they making with the produce we have grown for them?” On the Facebook Members Page the conversation and experience continues well after the produce leaves the farm and the visual component really hit’s it home for us. The interaction and shared experience validates all the long hours and hard work we do. It shows that its worthwhile and the goals of the farm are being met because the food is being utilized and thoroughly enjoyed. This part of the experience is important to us… because beyond the delicious produce and pasture raised meat and eggs our CSA aims to improve our CSA members quality of life! We want to play a part in ensuring that they can live long, healthy lives and be productive members of society.  This interaction helps us to see that our goals are making a difference in our community. And it is you our members who are making the upfront investment for the betterment of us all! Pretty amazing stuff!


And this is the other reason why your farmers have energy this November.. The Members Page, the thoughtful emails and conversations, the mindfulness, all of it inspires us and continues to fuel us through the 2015 season. We must have one of the few jobs in the world where folks come to us and tell us how grateful they are and how important our role is in this community and for that we are so grateful. That kind of support from our members gives us the fuel your farmers need to get the job done. It’s amazing how energized we feel even at the tail end of the season because we are growing better and have some seriously cream of the crop CSA members. This year more than any other year we feel connected to community and deeply rooted in our vision. It all feels like it is coming together and we couldn’t be more proud or encouraged of what our community and our farm are accomplishing.

Keep up the great work in the kitchen and keep sharing your experiences, recipes, etc. We hope you take a moment to reminisce about your first CSA share pick up of the season and how far you’ve come and all the beautiful meals you’ve enjoyed since then. A 28-week commitment is no small thing and we thank you all for choosing us as your farmers. Thank you for choosing to be a part of this farm and for investing in our small farm so it can provide the best possible food we can for you and your household.

Beef & Pork Shares. A big thank you to everyone for your enthusiasm about Grass Fed Beef & Pastured Pork Shares! There is just one beef share left for the 2015 season (if you’re interested, be sure to order soon!) We expect to have our freezers stocked with pork through the winter so please check back on the site periodically as we will be keeping our inventory updated!   Tis’ the season for soups, stews, braising, roasting and more so keep us in mind for the holiday season!  Thank you in advance for your support! The Grass Fed Beef Shares & Pastured Pork Shares & Sausage Shares we have for purchase are available to both members and non-members so feel free to share the link with family and friends…


We might be seeing our first signs of ol’ jack frost this week which means we’ll be busy covering up a few of our fall crops, boxing up the last of the cured squash, and harvesting the last of our peppers. This weekend we’ll be bringing in storage crops. Let the washing begin! If you see us out there this week be sure to give us a wave!

With kind regards,

your farmers

Jess & Brian

dirty hands, clean hearts