A True Family Farm

When our boys help in the gardens they represent the fifth generation of the family to work the soil on Kimker Hill. Four generations still live on the farm today. Strong family bonds and a deep love and respect for the earth influence all of our farm practices.

Our gardens provide us with the best and purest of food, matchless beauty, and the ultimate earth science classroom for our homeschooled boys.

Sustainability is a popular buzz word among small scale agriculture. To us it means giving more than you take. Putting back what you use. Remembering that this beautiful earth will last forever and it's our commision to care for. In our gardens we try hard to follow these ideals and work with the earth's design, not against it.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


(As I was writing this, Denise had posted her own entry about Grandma…oh well she was worth the press.)

We had high hopes for this spring here on the farm…the new hoop house…all the planning…all the prep work last fall...we really thought we were going to hit the ground running this spring. But it hasn’t worked out that way.

It is with great reservation that I complain about the weather, considering what others are going through, but all this rain has washed away (sometimes literally) much of our work and many of our plans. Just about the time things dry out enough to do some work; here comes more rain. And all the while the weeds grow taller and thicker.

The darkest clouds this spring were not related to the weather.

As Denise posted earlier, this spring we lost our dear friend and adopted grandma Sally Murphy. Sally had truly become part of our family. She lived right on the farm in Great Grandma Gerke’s house which is just across our front yard. She was a fixture here. Her smile was always there. Everyone who knew her couldn’t help but love her. Though her body had been ravaged by cancer, I personally will remember her as being one of the “strongest” persons I have ever known. We will miss her very much.

The storm wasn’t over.

Early last fall Great Grandma Gerke (Denise’s grandmother) came to live with us in our home. True, it was an adjustment but it proved to be a beautiful experience for our family. Our son’s had opportunity to become so much closer to Grandma and the respect and compassion they learned for their elders is priceless. Although the doctors would report that her heart was very weak and frail, you would never know it by the love it held. The effect she had on others was evident during her last days as an almost constant stream of friends and family came to spend time at her side.

Grandma was 88 when she passed away on May 4th. She was at peace in her own bed, with her family at her side and my little sister Bonnie holding her hand. It won’t be the same without Grandma, but she and Sally shared the same unwavering faith in the Bibles promises (John 5:25-29). We look forward to seeing them again soon.

Down but not out.

Yes, it’s been a rough spring. But we are slowly making progress. We will keep at it and try to keep you up to date.
Thanks to all our regular customers for your support at the market.
Stop by and give Denise a hug. She could use it.


In Memory of My Wonderful Grandma

This morning the last of our third batch of chicks hatched and was waiting for me in the incubator when I came downstairs. All the chicks are so cute and so much fun to watch. A couple of them seem to think the water dish is a wading pool. Each time we check on them, there is one sitting or standing in the water.

I'm writing this in memory of Grandma. We lost her in death earlier this month. She loved watching as the chicks hatched. I have a funny picture of her watching with the kids. Each time she was able to get up, she would check the incubator and the chicks' box. Sometimes, I'd come in the kitchen and she'd just be sitting on her walker watching them. She said they were better than TV. One night, with the second batch, she beat me to the incubator and lifted the new one out and put it in the box. When I came down to check and do a chick count, she started laughing at the confused look on my face.

Grandma had a very good sense of humor. She liked to tease, especially Nate. The last few months when she would get up and the kids would ask, "Grandma did you have a good nap?" she would answer, "I don't know, if I did I slept through it."

We loved having her live with us. She always had a smile and a hug ready to share and something nice to say. We all miss her! She was a very important part of our family and part of our daily lives. Now, we look forward to seeing her and Sally again in the paradise. We hope that time comes very soon!