April 18, 2012
Dear Former CSA Friends and Fans,
I wanted to write and just touch base with all of you and talk about good news.It has been almost 10 months since we shut down Soul Food Farm as a pastured chicken and egg farm After the last CSA delivery the winter settled in leaving me time to mull over the odyssey of the last ten years. At first it felt like such a failure. A train wreck of ideas and dreams. Then January rolled along with its cold days and endless cups of coffee. With hours to think and to cold to work outside, something began to settle and ideas started to peculate again. Fix up the house? travel? build a better farm?
In February I went to Haiti with Partners of the America’s, a US AID project. They needed a chicken expert and I had the time, so I went for two weeks. There are farmers in Haiti who are looking at chickens as a source of income and food. Of course they are having the same issues that our little farm had. Food cost, labor, disease and finding markets. I don’t know how helpful I was, Haiti is such a broken country. But, I did come home with a new sense of purpose and the understanding that giving up isn’t an option for so many people. What the hell was I thinking wallowing in self pity.
The last 10 months has given Eric and I a chance to get back on our feet and start creating the farm we have held in our hearts all these years. The house is repainted and redecorated and goes up as a vacation rental, farm stay in three weeks. I have moved into my little office and it is the prettiest most charming space I have ever lived in. Eric is working again as an Engineer and living in a 100 year old house built by my great grandmother in San Francisco. He comes home on the weekends and says how good everything looks.
It took several month to sell or give away chicken equipment and chickens, which lead us to start cleaning out years of stuff we just don’t need anymore. We kept 100 chickens and are experimenting with feeding them less processed feed and more seeds, vegetables and fruits. Plus we decided to eliminate soy from their diet and now feed them hemp seeds for protein. We are selling eggs from the farm these days, plus our lavender essential oil and the culinary salts. If any off you still come by Vacaville please stop in and pick up some eggs. I know many of you “gifted” me your balance, but I would be so happy to know you had eggs again from the little fridge in the driveway. Just leave me a note in case I miss you. I think you could use your old balance. Just contact me and I’ll look it up and see what you have. I can handle that if it means good eggs on your table.
We also rent out space to another farmer named Michael Hoolihan who cultivates 5 acres and grows vegetables at Soul Food.
We are only selling from the farm,! The days of running around are over, but think about shopping your farm this summer.
More changes are in the works but for now this seems like enough news. We miss you all and hope that you have new sources for good protein. We still need more farmers even if it is challenging.
Excuse all the typos and such. You know writing is not my forte.