"Only within the moment of time represented by the present century has one species - man - acquired significant power to alter the nature of his world." ~Rachel Carson

Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Rainy Earth Day first post since actually moving to the farm HAD to wait for a rainy day since its been non-stop activity since Spring Break. Perhaps one of you could have warned me that I might be biting off more than I could chew by opting to homeschool Quinn, becoming an organic farmer and still holding down a full-time job. Yikes! Its a good thing Quinn and I both like being busy!

The homeschool journey has been interesting to say the least. While I had envisioned an amazingly profound Human and Animal unit on the farm its been a lot more practical than spiritual. In actually being able to observe cows, eagles and owls Quinn has found many of the statements made in the curriculum to be inaccurate. For instance, at the moment I read the part about cattle being docile and difficult to rouse, a virtual stampede erupted and we were forced to hightail it out of the pasture. Another particularly stand-out passage refers to cattle as having shown such "good will toward men" in that they freely give of their milk, their flesh and their hide. Quinn responded, "Mom, they just tell you the facts that suit their purpose, even if they aren't true." On a brighter note, he gets to attend Erin's practicum each week at an experimental organic farm where she is earning her certificate in Sustainable Agriculture. He is becoming quite the expert!

The farm activities during the last month have been very intensive. The 60 acres adjacent to the house are in organic transition - a few acres of sweet corn, one acre of veggies and the rest field crops for 2010. We are adding a 2000 square-foot high tunnel this summer in order to extend the harvest beyond the traditional growing season. The veggie plot currently consists of potatoes, onions, shallots, leeks, carrots, beets, shell peas, snap peas and lots of greens. Broccoli, peppers, tomatoes (including heirlooms from the Okanis Garden) and lots of herbs are ready to be transplanted into the garden soon. Summer crops (squash, melons, beans, etc) will be seeded pretty soon as well. All of these crops and more we plan to offer at the Lawrence Farmers Market this summer. Quinn is starting a small cutting garden and will have bouquets for sale. He has quite a knack for putting together attractive bouquets.

It feels amazing to be involved in this effort even though I can already see that it is going to be incredibly challenging. And even though I miss Lawrence and our Prairie Moon family, it feels great to have another piece of life aligned with the mission of working to heal the planet. Happy Earth Day to all!!!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Our Big Move

This post is to announce the BIG MOVE that Quinn and I are making, returning to the farm in Louisburg, to pursue personal, educational and career growth opportunities. After about a year of discussion and contemplation, we have decided to go for it. A lot of changes are happening on the farm - dad transitioning crop and livestock operations from conventional to organic, mom expanding the organic market garden and incorporating biodynamics, sister establishing the family pumpkin farm business on the family farm - not to mention that most of the work I do with water quality efforts is taking place around the area. We want to be a part of it all! Quinn and I have our own interests - he wants to raise a few sheep for wool that he intends to dye, spin, knit and weave. He wants to cultivate a special garden with plants and trees to make his dyes. I want to help my mom with the garden expansion, start beekeeping, and keep working to heal/clean up our endangered rivers, streams and lakes.

It is with sadness that we leave this lovely community that has been a blissful home to us for the last seven years - dear friends and family, Prairie Moon, the Merc, downtown, our lovely little home... Louisburg is only one hour away from Lawrence, though, and we plan to make it back often. Everyone in Lawrence is welcome at the farm any time, for the afternoon or even a weekend! There is plenty for adults and children to experience during all seasons, and there is plenty of room.

We feel hope and excitement as we look forward to connecting with old friends and new in Louisburg. Anyone with a 10-year old boy (or girl) that enjoys skating, riding bikes and basketball should get in touch. Quinn will need friends to hang with, and so will I!
The purpose of the blog is to keep everyone updated on our progress - the farm's as a whole as well as the individuals in the family. Quinn will be homeschooling through at least next year. We plan to spend a great part of his 5th grade year travelling the US and abroad. I will post photos and other fun stuff here, including products we may be offering from the farm. Possibilities include: raw milk and dairy products, CSA shares, grass-fed beef, honey, bread, wool and more.

Please call me (913-709-9740) or e-mail ( if you ever want to get together!!!


Lesley and Quinn