…Economic Development, Education, Hunger Relief, and Community
The other day I had the privilege to get to go to a place that I had heard about for years and had wanted to visit. I have always thought extremely highly of both the organization and the people involved. Cobblestone is an actual working farm that has a sold out program where locals can buy a basket of seasonal produce and free range eggs for themselves and then donate one to a family in need.
They are beginning to host groups of children on field trips to teach them about farming, raising chickens and sustainability.(In the interest of full disclosure, I work for with Great Day Farms (@greatdayfarms), who has been a supporter of them for a few years and their involvement with Cobblestone was something that was very attractive for me personally. I was not paid to do this post but I’m honored I was asked to visit. )
I grabbed my almost 3 year old and set out to observe one the the filed trips with middle-school children. The farm is located off one of the main roads in what seems to be in the middle of town, down a side road, then further down a dirt road. I was surprised at how “country” it felt being surrounded by trees yet still in town!
My experience on farms is… NONE. I listened as one of the main farmers shared with kids which plant was which and how it grew. There is so much about growing things that I had no idea existed! The green house had a lot more produce and I was surprised that the early May snow didn’t seem to affect any of the growth.
Bug wasn’t super impressed after about the 5th row of vegetables and kept asking to ride the tractor and see the chickens. As the rain began to come down, the school children went inside one of the green houses and I talked to Scott & Katelyn more about the people and their mission. The number of volunteers they have had over the years is amazing!
One of the coolest things, for me personally, on this trip was the fact I was able to show Bug WHERE vegetables came from and he ate a strawberry freshly picked from the ground- he seemed in awe and like I must have been joking with him that the food we ate came from the ground.
To quote them, “The Farm is designed to use sustainable agriculture to help the under resourced in our community by focusing on 4 strategic pillars: Economic Development, Education, Hunger Relief, and Community.”
I was at a Norman Rockwell exhibit over the weekend and a certain image of a confused artist staring at a blank canvas captured me. Paintbrushes cast aside and good luck charms dangling from the top to no avail, he sits scratching his head.
Sometimes I feel like that on my blog. I sit down to write and stare at a blank page on the back end of my wordpress site and wonder what to say.
I listened to the audio tour and the calm, melodic voice shared that Norman Rockwell was not paining a self portrait as it was assumed by some- that Norman himself always knew what he was doing and had direction.
That challenged me to the core. It was his ability to just release who he was on canvas that kept him real and authentic as I try to be. When I sit back her in silence is usually when I want to share what is REALLY going on but feel the pressure not too- either self-imposed or from just the ever wondering of “what will people think?” and discerning what is MY story to tell, not taking for granted the fact that other might not want me sharing their lives, even if they are entwined in my own.
This year has been really amazing- strange, unpredictable and fulfilling but with every good step forward there is typically a few backlashes. I despise being the “unspoken” prayer requester, but it’s fitting for right now. I’m beginning to take my beautiful life in stride and the unpredictability of it all is more challenging in a fun kind of way, if I let it.
For the exciting parts of things, I have a new job, working as a social media coordinator at an amazing vendor. It wasn’t something that I was even looking for but it fell in my lap like a perfectly timed gift. I have Paige to thank for this.
I’m balancing working full time again being away from the boys again. It’s always a little bittersweet but the excitement and joy that I feel when I see them is really confirming working outside the house was the right move. That may seem strange because I really loved free-lancing and working from home with them, but the stress of managing time-sensitive tasks and getting dinner together was becoming overwhelming and I was ready for a change.
I’m so far from perfect but every day I try to be. Not in a grand, epic failure kind of way with guilt and shame bogging me down, but being perfect as I can, knowing that it’s through God pouring himself into me that I can be anything other than a huge mess.
So, as I sit here on my lunch watching the trees outside my office blow in a cool breeze (and the occasional crazy hawk fly close to my window), I am content in knowing that regardless of what crazy and uncertainty is going on in my life, that God has called me here, for such a time as this.