It takes a village!

I haven’t felt like writing lately, I’ve been struggling like the rest of the world trying to figure out what will be the new normal. Since leaving the financially secure job that I had a year ago down in the Detroit area, I’ve gone between worrying that I’ll lose the house to realizing that everything will be OK. I’ve left several jobs with no job lined up, and I somehow always land on my feet. And whatever does happen in the coming weeks and months, I do think things will be OK.

Normally I open my farm stand on Memorial Day weekend. With people not wanting to go to stores, I opened 2 weekends ago with bread, baked goods, jam and eggs, and it’s been pretty busy. But not without a few bumps in the road……

To expand my baking business, I got a commercial stand mixer and double oven. The oven door glass shattered when it was being installed, but we got a replacement soon after (see, it worked out!). I started using about 25#’s of flour each day that I baked, and didn’t want to go into a grocery store or Costco for more. A friend nearby donated a 5# bag one day, and then 25#’s the next to get me through a weekend. My neighbor read that I was looking for flour, and called a local restaurant who was getting ready to order from a food distributor. They happily let me piggyback on their order so that I could keep baking. And, another nearby chef offered to order for me too – so you see, somehow it all worked out.

Today I realized that I used almost a pound of yeast in 2 days, and happened to meet someone who stopped at the farm stand for baked goods. She works at the nearby school in food service, and I asked if I could order some yeast on their next order. She wasn’t sure if it would work, which I understood, but called back later and said I could order yeast through them – woot, woot! I’ll have 4 lbs of yeast on Tuesday, somehow it all worked out.

This morning I was up at 2 a.m. to bake and it was drizzling, but nothing too bad. My farm stand, when open, faces north. Normally the rain/winds come from the west or south, but today they came from the north and when I checked everything mid-morning, a lot of the packaging was wet. Everything is pretty securely packaged, but I notified customers on Facebook that I was going to dry it off when it stopped raining, and then I promptly fell asleep. I woke up 3 hours later, checked the farm stand, and almost everything was sold. It all worked out.

One local restaurant is feeding 25 families in need every week. We can donate cash or food to help the cause, and many are pitching in to make sure those families are fed. My neighbors and I trade eggs for roasts, and their 4H beef is some of the best I’ve ever had. I’ve also traded eggs with a local chef (for his personal use) for a credit at his restaurant when we’ve been able to go there to dine. It’s a win-win for us as it’s a very fancy schmancy restaurant that we wouldn’t normally go to. (Significant other is Mr. Meat and Potatoes) But somehow it all works out…..

I guess my rambling today is my observation that even though we’re all feeling the confinement and anxiety of COVID-19 in different ways, somehow things work out. People pitch in and help fill a need when they see it if they can, they help their neighbors and those in need, and maybe this confinement is bringing out the good in us that was there all along, but lost in the modern day politics and fighting that seems to have become prevalent in our society. I never knew that my baked goods would sell as they have, and I’m so grateful to have local customers now because maybe their business will allow me to earn a living from what I’m doing. It won’t be a lot, but enough to pay the bills, which is really all I need. Somehow, this all worked out…..

Be safe, stay healthy, and try to find the good in each day. Call your parents, friends, aunts and uncles, siblings, neighbors, and anyone you want to catch up with. It’s the perfect time to reconnect, and tell your village how much they mean to you. My village is both local and global, and I’m so grateful to everyone in it, and their influence on me. Thank you for reading my ramblings, I wish you all peace! Andria

Published by Red Gate Farm Michigan

I'm a city girl living her dream of having a small farm in the country, living a simpler life and enjoying every minute of it! #auntbeawannabe

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