Shaun and I are both prone toward extremes. When we do things, we throw ourselves into them. Both of us have been called obsessive by other people in our lives. It is one of the things that make us a good match. It is also something that helps with starting a farm, and starting a farm business.
We’ve joined a couple of farm specific organizations and we’ve been participating in a lot of farm education. We’ve attended a couple of farm conferences, read lots of books, and taken individual workshops through the Tilth Alliance and the Thurston Conservation District.
We’re currently taking a twelve week Cultivating Success Whole Farm Planning class. As part of the class, we went on a field trip to The Evergreen State College Organic Farm this weekend. The class has been entirely virtual so this was the first time we’ve seen our classmates, or the class instructor, in person. While we were happy to meet our classmates in person, and it was great to visit a working farm, the most exciting part was to visit the college and the farm where Shaun got his formal farmer training.
We walked along the path through the woods that connects the main campus and the farm that he walked three days a week for eight months in 2015. We walked a bit around campus, and visited the bus stop where he got to campus and caught the bus to leave campus for the two years he studied at Evergreen. The very bus he took to and from campus was laying over while we were there.
We walked around campus a little, looking at the native, and non-native, plants in the landscaping and noting details that resonate with Shaun’s experience of his time there. And reminisced a bit about his graduation, where he wore a stole volunteers handmade for veteran graduates.
We didn’t take any pictures of the actual farm tour. We were too busy talking with the farm manager, Beth Leimbach, who was at the farm when Shaun was there as a student, and generally learning and exploring the space and their practices.
It made for a great day--a little community building, a little connecting to our history, and an opportunity to leave the house responsibly.