Thursday, October 12, 2017

The Bakery Side of Farming

You can tell we're not a crop farm. Crop farms are farms that plant big fields of corn or sorghum or cane or tobacco or wheat or oats, alfalfa, soybeans, or veggies to go to Bird's Eye or other major food producers...

We're a "Truck Farm".

We can truck our produce here, there or the other place and set up a little stand and sell from the back of the truck. That's where the "truck farm" label came from.

But we decided to change things up when we began this enterprise... to do it our way, based on an idea from our daughter Sarah and Dave's dream of a community farm that everyone comes to.

We don't truck anything. We could, we know that, and a lot of producers do, but we want people to COME TO THE FARM!!!

"Why would you want that?" you're wondering. "To have strangers traipsing around your yard, your farm, your house? What form of crazy person ARE YOU????"

Well, that's another blog post! We live in an old-fashioned house. We like old-time things, old-fashioned recipes, and hands-on work. We blend that with some social media savvy, cute miniature donkeys and a great hand at recipes. When we put that all together with farm-fresh veggies, then the idea of the bakery (begun long ago with simple zucchini bread) and hand-done craft items (done by locals in exchange for work time) becomes a reality.

All these mums from August 20th??? Sold! 756 mums grown, 740 sold!!!!

Right now we work from the kitchen... we're hoping for a barn, with a small kitchen tucked inside, a real farm bakery presence.

Why are we doing this when we should be going to Florida every winter???

(Ruthy sighs because she can't even really explain it herself, much less to others!!!)

Call it a calling.

Call us workaholics.

Call us crazy.

All would apply. In the end, it's that idea of revitalizing an old farm to its glory days, of bringing people together, and to our town of Hilton, NY... and doing the work of our hands the way we've always wanted to.

I don't have easy explanations for it, but there is so much excitement being generated by our $5 Pumpkin Farm... by the family taking care of customers... by talking to folks and reaching out...

It's working.

It's fun.

And it's offering folks a whole new opportunity to "Come to the Farm" on the west side of town.

We're growing... and we're growing!

And as we do, I think of those sweet Biblical verses about the vineyards and the sheep and the workers. Those humble shepherds, called to greet the Son of God.

Simple farmers. With big hearts.

Alleluia. :)  And saying that, I have to include this sweet child's version of Hallelujah...

So if we throw in some Blodgett Style Whoopie Pies, carrot cakes, and old fashioned oatmeal spice cake... well that's a fun aside right there!

Here's the RECIPE for the oatmeal spice cake, a new favorite! 

Our season will draw to a close in early November... when we say goodbye to the last squashes.

And then we start immediately planning for next year.

And all the while, singing or humming "Hallelujah"... for aren't we so blessed???

Inspirational author Ruth Logan Herne is as at home in a kitchen as she is on the farm or at a keyboard, and she loves to hunker down in the long, cold winters and write sweet stories... and then hit the deck running come spring planting! You can find her on facebook (she talks a lot) on Twitter (not as noisy!) and her website keeps you updated on all her books!

She loves God, her family, chocolate, mini donkeys, coffee, and so many other things... including toasty fires on cold, wet nights!


  1. I think this is such a wonderful thing! I admire all the hard work you're all doing. I love the photos you share, showing the kids helping out. They'll treasure the memories forever!

    1. You mean we've TRAUMATIZED them forever, LOL! Can you imagine this when it's scaled to little memories??? Oh, I can't wait to hear how big and grand the farm seems in retrospect. :)

  2. I've loved watching your vision take root and prosper over the last few years! A dream come true - and with MINI-DONKEYS!!!!

    That Hallelujah's become my new favorite Christmas video. Thank you for sharing.

    1. I just love that video... the little girl, her rhythmic sway, the hint of autism, the clarity of notes and emotion.... oh my stars, it just moves me every time I see it!!!

      And the donkeys are such loves.

      I can't even!!!! :)

      I must get some more donkey pics, just to stare at when I'm not outside staring at the real thing.

      They love to come out and take walks, nibbling grass... and then they don't want to go back in.

      Donkey Stubborn!!!

  3. You're living my dream, Ruthy! I think we all we need to stand behind family farms. If I lived closer I'd be there all the time. I could be your donkey herder. :-)

    Ready to make a cake -- this oatmeal one sounds perfect now that we finally have fall weather!

  4. Ruthy, I want to come spend October with you. Bake, help people find the perfect pumpkin, absorb your energy. It's no wonder people want to come see you. Forget southern hospitality, you've got Yankee hospitality. That and people want a snippet of a simpler life. And you give them that glimpse, allowing them into your world. Well done.