We received the news last week. Our farm co-op, whom we have been with for over half a decade, since the second year of their existence, has decided to do away with box shares (close to half their shareholders). They feel they have grown too quickly. The farmer has decided that the simplest thing to do is cut out box shares – people who like to simply pick up a box each week — and is keeping only the pick your own/mix and match crowd. Now, I love this farm. I love the organic veggies. I was more than happy to pay the extra $100 a year for a box share, since picking veggies at a public farm for an hour each week with a toddler and five year old in searing summer temperatures is not always feasible or enjoyable. I am saddened by his decision. And yet, I am also rather relieved.
My 5 year old hates root vegetables. He won’t eat cooked greens or tomatoes. He won’t touch bell peppers or eggplant in any form. He loves the farm corn but those usually are already half eaten by worms. He loves salad, but there are so many foods from the farm that only my husband and I will eat, and I am not the type of mom who will cook each person a different meal. I like to cook large meals, and I like everyone to be able to eat them. So from now own, we’ll just buy and cook things that everyone will eat. Meals will be less of a struggle. There will be no more pleading and cajoling with our son to just eat three bites. Everyone, I think, will be happier. Dinner will return to what it should be: harmonious family together-time.
And, I won’t be subjected to the newsletter from the farm each week anymore. The farm interns sometimes write a bit about what’s going on and they are always fun and interesting to listen to. But the owner, the one who is feeling burnt out now, has been whining since the very first year we signed up. I doubt he will be happier at the end of next season than he is right now. I have a feeling he’ll still be whining — about how it’s too hot, too dry, too cold, or too rainy. About how there’s too many bugs, or too few hands. He’s a city boy who wanted to try his luck at farming, and unfortunately he doesn’t quite seem to get it. Oh, he took his farming classes at university, and he’s got field management down to a tee, but he just isn’t the sort of farmer my grandpa was, or the other local farmers I know. They take what comes, and they feel thankful for every blessing they get. They roll with the seasonal punches and know that every crop is a gift from Spirit. For him, it always seems that it’s more about the money than the land. Owning this farm is, for him, just a stepping stone to the independent homestead he wants to own someday.
Perhaps we’ll have a little garden of our own again next summer. Who knows I just know that whatever we plant, whatever we pick, whatever we buy, whatever we eat, we’re ALL going to love it and give thanks.