Fall Farms

Now that the growing season is over we have said goodbye to our weekly farm visit.

It's always bitter sweet to be done the summer share pick ups. We've been there every week (except for vacations) this summer since late May. But in the end I am thankful for the change, as I love the shifting of seasons. And mostly relieved as I now have one less errand to run (a lovely errand mind you) during the week.

Starting November we will visit the farm once a month to pick up our winter share till next May when the summer shares start again.

We've been members at this farm since Brienne was a babe in my arms and the farm is simply a part of who we are and what we do.

The kids and I like farms in general. Damien is not a farming guy. He's an outdoorsy, backpacking man so I make sure the kids and I get our farm fill during the weekdays.

This month we visited three different farms, including our "own".

At the beginning of the month we went to see the last remaining active Shaker community in the world, Chosen Land at Sabbathday Lake, ME, a National Historic Landmark.  It was a homeschool field trip that just happened to coincide with my own reading and study of the Shaker faith.

I've worked bits of Shaker study into our homeschool this month including listening to Simple Gifts, Shaker Chants and Spirituals which I found at the library. I may be the only one who's really engaged in the subject matter but no mind. Mama wants to learn too and sometimes the things we study together, however informally, are simply because I'm interested in it. 

But back to our visit. The tour was unexpectedly cancelled so we didn't get to see much besides the outsides of the beautiful, old buildings but it was a nice morning at a working farm nonetheless. In large part because I was able to have a lovely, long (and unexpected) chat with a friend who was also there for the homeschool tour. 

The other farm we visited this month (other than our own) was a fiber farm. I've wanted to go here for ages, especially since I learned how to needle felt in the spring. I wanted to stock our craft supplies with raw materials for the children to use for felting projects and also I wanted to see the cool yurt they use as a studio. 

The twenty minute drive was well worth it and the visit did not disappoint. It was an extra special treat for the kiddos. Not only did they get to choose wool they wanted for their own projects, they also fed and played with the goats. 


The "kids" loved it and so did my kiddos.

I was a good month for farm visits. It's been a great growing season in general and now it's time to say goodbye.

I found this poem by Robert Louis Stevenson that is very fitting for this time of year as the growing season comes to a close and the fields (and our wonderful farmers) are ready for a rest. 

Farewell to the Farm

The coach is at the door at last;
The eager children, mounting fast
And kissing hands, in chorus sing:
Good-bye, good-bye, to everything! 

To house and garden, field and lawn,
The meadow-gates we swang upon,
To pump and stable, tree and swing,
Good-bye, good-bye, to everything!

And fare you well for evermore,
O ladder at the hayloft door,
O hayloft where the cobwebs cling,
Good-bye, good-bye, to everything!

Crack goes the whip, and off we go;
The trees and houses smaller grow;
Last, round the woody turn we sing:
Good-bye, good-bye, to everything!

« A Blogging Manifesto
Autumn, Meet Winter »
  • Francesca

    Francesca on Oct. 29, 2010, 1:07 p.m.

    I'm still not saying goodbye to our growing season, and hopefully my little experiment with winter gardening won't be a failure because I'm really loving it: no weeding, no watering, very little maintenance ... as long as the crops grow! PS I've been thinking your previous post over and over, but I'm not ready to comment yet. Happy weekend Renee!


    • renee

      renee on Oct. 29, 2010, 1:11 p.m.

      My own kale and chard is still going strong in my garden but the big time growing season is definitely coming to a close here in Maine.


  • Kelly

    Kelly on Oct. 29, 2010, 1:32 p.m.

    What a lovely experience for you and the kids to have an intimate relationship with your CSA farm. So far ours is box pickup in town, but I want to look around and find "our farm" like you have. It would mean extra driving but I think it would be far more meaningful for my kids that way.

    I think it's great that you incorporate your own interests and what you are learning into your homeschool! Even if it doesn't catch on, you are still role-modeling excitement about learning, exposing the kids to a new topic, and making things interesting for yourself. Awesome!

    Also, Brienne's haircut is fabulous. :)


    • renee

      renee on Oct. 29, 2010, 5:58 p.m.

      Brienne's hair looks that way from the wind blowing. But her hair is fairly cute without the wind blowing (smile).


  • exhale. return to center.

    exhale. return to center. on Nov. 1, 2010, 8:43 p.m.

    lovely photos and reflections!

    we had our last csa pick up last week. i work at the farm so in many ways it is a relief for me to be done. like you said, one less thing to do during the week. but i know i will also miss it terribly.

    no winter csa shares around here (that i know of at least) but we will certainly be visiting our winter farmers' markets often!!


You can subscribe to comments on this article using this form.

If you have already commented on this article, you do not need to do this, as you were automatically subscribed.