You are never too old to set another goal or dream a new dream.C. S. Lewis
Neither Christine nor I were born into the homesteading life. We are both products of late-20th century cities and suburban life. We grew up in a generation defined by MTV, convenience foods, and impatience.
At some point though, we both realized that each of our lives was missing something. Neither one of us felt fulfilled by what a mainstream upbringing had taught us to think of as rewarding and satisfying.
Fortunately we found each other.
And we found homesteading.
Through the homesteading community we realized we had a whole other set of dreams that we wanted to pursue. We wanted to know where our food came from. We wanted to see – and to know – how it was raised. We wanted to be active participants in our food story.
And we wanted to share our experience with others.
So, as the fulfillment of one dream, we now have… the farm stand!
It’s crazy to think that just over two years ago, during our first spring on the property, we built our very first raised beds. These would be the soils in which we would plant the seeds of our dreams.
That was also the year we also started way too many seeds in our basement, what we would eventually begin to know as our “grow-lab.”
That first year saw us grow a wealth of produce. Each week the garden yielded its bounty to us. It also showed us we needed to up our canning game. Valuable lessons that would propel us to dream bigger, and grow bigger in our second year.
Year two saw the introduction of our first livestock here on the homestead. Chickens. Specifically layers for egg production. Raising layers would give us an introduction to chickens as well as eventually provide us with a sustainable source of protein. It was only by happy coincidence that our first eggs arrived the same day as our first granddaughter, Avery Jean.
The confidence gained in season two of growing on the farm led us to try broilers in season three. It’s a big leap from raising layers and collecting eggs to raising broilers and processing them yourself, but we steeled ourselves and have actually had great success with raising and processing our own chicken right here on the homestead.
The leaps we made each year allowed us to get where we are today. Opening our first farm stand and serving the local neighborhood with farm fresh produce and poultry products is the realization of a small dream.
Our dream become reality.
We’ve got some other exciting news going on as well. Two different opportunities arose in the last few months that are giving us the opportunity to further share our story.
The first is a round robin of sorts. One of the documentaries that forged the interest that both Christine and I have in food was Food, Inc. Released in 2008, Food, Inc. is an eye-opening look into how our food is sourced, produced, marketed, and adulterated before it even reaches our grocers’ shelves. It’s a film that really makes you think.
This year we were thrilled to learn that Participant Media is producing a sequel. Food, Inc. 2 – Back for Seconds. Although this film doesn’t yet have an official release date, it is anticipated to be released in late-2023.
Imagine our surprise when Participant, upon learning of our homestead through social media feedback, reached out and invited us to share our homesteading story as part of the lead up materials to the sequel’s release!
The “Food, Inc.” Effect – Spotlight on: The Clark Family was shared first through Facebook and Instagram on July 6, 2023. You can see the materials and read about our story by visiting our Headwaters Homestead page on Facebook.
Second, we’ve been invited by our local library branch to share our story in a public program held at the library this coming September!
On a recent trip to our local library branch we ran into just the right person who took an interest in our story. That conversation grew into a program idea that now is going to give us an opportunity to share our wealth with the local community.
We’ve been fortunate to be given these opportunities. While we didn’t start out our lives as farmers or homesteaders, these are the dreams we are building for ourselves now. And in them we’re finding what we missed. Living, and appreciating, our best lives.
It’s never too late to start on your dreams.