Tuesday, February 9, 2010

MaryJane's Farm...

I am a farm~girl at heart... ten years ago Jack and I sold our little farmhouse and acreage that I loved... we had built our own farmhouse, (literally!) I don't mean we had it built I mean WE built it! The only help we had was the foundation being poured and some of our friends helped get the trusses up to build the roof... Jack and I did ALL the rest!...I have a beautiful scrapbook I made, with photos of each step we did along the way, I called it "The House That Jack Built"... our dreamhouse, exactly the way we wanted it on some acreage... we planted an orchard with every kind of fruit tree we wanted, and Jack made me places for a huge vegetable garden, an herb garden and a wildflower garden, a grape arbor, besides all of my other gardens... I grew all of our own vegetables and fruits, made my own jams, jellies, pickles, salsas, bottled fruits, dried herbs, dried flowers, you name it... we didn't raise any animals... just our three cats and our dog... our road was a little dirt road, and we had only four neighbors fairly close by... one of our neighbors kept us supplied with farm fresh eggs each morning and another one with homemade bread often... we even had a little John Deere tractor... we had a beautiful view of the mountains to the east and the Great Salt Lake to the west... nothing but sincerity as far as the eye could see...

Then the inevitable happened... the Mormon church and big developers bought up the surrounding countryside... soon it was nothing but wall to wall subdivisions with rows and rows of houses that all looked alike, and a Mormon church on every corner, literally! My little farm in the country quickly turned into Grand Central Station... needless to say, we sold and moved... the peace and serenity we had become accustomed to was gone forever...just like so many of the beautiful farms now vanishing from our countrysides across America... I loved that little farmhouse and farm... but that I suppose is yesterday's news... nevertheless, I have remained a farmgirl at heart... my home today is like me, nothing fancy... our home is full of love and comfy things... like my little farmhouse was... I love all my vintage treasures, and collections, but stop and think about it... isn't the reason we love these things mostly because they are from another simpler, gentler time... for me it is... I grew up in my little rural town of Bountiful and now live in the adjoining little rural town of Centerville... I don't like big cities... as much as I would love to see Paris one day, I would much more prefer to see the French countryside where my ancestors lived... two or three years ago, I'm not sure when, I came across a beautiful magazine called MaryJane's Farm... I fell in love with it! MaryJane Butters grew up in Ogden, Utah, which is about 30 miles to the north of where I grew up and where I now live as well... you can read MaryJane's inspiring story on her website http://www.maryjanesfarm.org/. MaryJane now resides on her farm outside of Moscow, Idaho where she lives a beautiful and fulfilling life... I was so impressed with her magazine, I decided to order a couple of her books... I called the toll~free number and couldn't believe it!!! A human voice answered the phone after one ring! No answering machine playing funky music or telling you to choose from 100 different buttons depending on what you wanted, and then disconnecting you anyway... not only did someone answer right away, that someone was her step-son... MaryJane's Farm is truly a family~owned and run farm... I placed my order for two of her books, when her son told me I could save money and pay less if I bought all three as a bundle... I couldn't believe what I was hearing... how many places have you ordered from where they want you to SAVE money??? So, I ordered all three of her books...

I love all of them! MaryJane's Outpost starts out with a quote from MaryJane that says "Haven't we all heard by now how important it is to eat a diet high in roughage? Likewise "roughaging" (spending time outdoors) is essential to our mental health. Even if it's a settee on the porch, we need it... gotta have it"... I sooo agree with her! MaryJane's Stitching Room is just that...47 farmgirl handiwork projects (all of them beautiful by the way), and MaryJane's Ideabook~Cookbook~Lifebook is sort of an all~in~one book... MaryJane's life is all about eating to be healthy, doing what you love and enjoy, going organic whenever possible, buying locally, living a more simple life, and this is a biggie for me... recycling! I have been recycling for years, often having to drive many miles to do so... now Centerville FINALLY got a recycling program!... I buy organic as much as I can... sometimes it is harder to find, and it does cost more, but how do you put a pricetag on your health? Here are two of my favorite organic products... Que Pasa organic white corn tortilla chips and Annie's cheddar bunnies (Amy at Bunny Rose Cottage would LOVE these!)... not only are they healthy for you, they taste YUMMY!!!... I also buy any fruits and vegetables that I can find organically grown, and only all natural chicken (you know, no hormones, etc)...

So even though we do not have our little farmhouse and farm, I still love my farmgirl way of life... it is like so many things... an attitude more than anything else... I still make our jams and jellies, pickles, salsas, bottle fruit...grow herbs and a few vegetables along with all of my flowers and plants in our gardens... doing things the old~fashioned way... I actually like to do household chores, folding laundry relaxes me (I know some of you are thinking "this chick's nuts!)... but I think we all need to slow down, relax, breathe deeply, and "get back to our roots" so to speak...

I know there is definitely some farmgirl left in me... is there in you???... xoxo
P.S. One day when (and if) I can, I will post some photos of our little farmhouse and life in the country... I get awfully melancholy looking at them, especially since all of our little pets have passed away... xoxo


Tracie~MyPetiteMaison said...

Yes! I love the farm lifestyle too. I haven't been able to find that magazine in our little town but will check out the website, thank you for the link, Julie-Marie. Agree with you on the organic note too. I can't believe how much better the Rocky chickens taste and of course, the produce too. We're very lucky, there's a produce store that's maybe a ten minute walk from home and it's nice to be able to "pop in" every time we need a little something fresh and good!

Dawn said...

Oh I miss our farm life also. It has been 13-14 years since I have had my "farm" like home. I had disabled animals that was a fefuge for any that were given to us.
Most were chickens, ducks . peacocks and such. I started several gardens but most didn't do well because our "animals" enjoyed them. I love to can and eat healthy also as much as I can. I tend to but most from farmers in my area.
What a great post sweetie!

ozma of odds said...

...oh Julie Marie ~ it's as if I stepped out of my thoughts and into yours! I so wish for that charming farmhouse. So much so, for St. Valentines, I purchased a large silver bell that mounts to the wall and you ding it with a string for my beloved, in hopes that the next home we move into is just that ~ a charming rose- covered farmhouse! with a charming front porch, to which I may hang this bell and ding for lemonaide and cookie time! and don't even get me started on the organic!!! It is so important to educate ourselves about not only what and how we, but also where is it coming from! Thanks for being such a kindred spirit! (did you know Annie's also makes soda cracker bunnies?! Ssssooo cute floating in your favorite soup!) xo

Marsha (Sassy Mini Dolls) said...

Thank you, Julie, for sharing your farmhouse with us. It sounds like it was heaven living there.

I've always lived in the city but would spend my summers when I was young with my stepmother's family in the country.

No bathroom, just an outhouse, boiled water on the wood stove so I could take a bath in the TIN bathtub. No TV, just a radio and my battery operated recordplayer.

I'll cherish those memories always!


Karyn Bernard (French Charming) said...

Loved hearing about your farmhouse Sweet Friend, and I too am a farm girl at heart. I was just saying to The Italian that I want to move to an old farm house on lots of land and grow our own food and get the heck out the city!

You make me long for it all the more reading this. The books look fabulous and I'll have to check out her site.

Love and hugs,

Amy Arnaz said...

Bonjour Julie Marie~
You mentioned the MaryJane Farms magazine to me once and I meant to subscribe and forgot! Thanks for this lovely post. I'm going to send that card in first thing tomorrow. Goodness ~ jellies, jams, salsa? You are gloriously domestic. I love that! And I, too, enjoy folding laundry. It is meditative to be sure.
Please take me with you when you go to the French Countryside, will you? Merci beaucoup. Amy

Alice W. said...

I loved this post Julie. Your farmhouse life sounds like a dream...one I would like to start living out soon! I long for my own gardens and land with a nice big old house to decorate and make cozy. I too am a big supporter of recycling and actually now that we moved out to the country it is proving harder since they don't seem to do it anywhere near us...so even though it's harder...we take it up to where we used to live. I also am big into eating organically and getting food from local farms. I have been learning so much about it this past year. I have wanted some of those Mary Jane books for a long time...have them in my favs on amazon but haven't purchased any yet. Well, sorry for the book...but I was just excited we have so many interests in common ;) and really enjoyed this post that came straight from your heart!

claudie said...

I was just looking for that magazine today again!!!
I have looked in every kind of book store, but we do not carry this one. i'm in Canada, so I will look it up on the internet this evening for sure. I wonder if they will ship it to me? I hope so.
As for your country living...I adore not living in the city any longer. I love the simple life. We are on the river, only 2 neighbours, I have an outdoor shower, and I can dance, sing and yell as loud as I want.
Thanks for reminding me how fortunate I am.
Love Claudie

Jonny J Petros said...

Julie Marie, Hi, Just wanted to tell you your new banner is pretty I love the pink on the sides of your page also, beautiful! Best wishes, Jonny

Zuzu said...

Julie Marie!
I didn't know that you built a home with your own hands! BRAVO for you! I look forward to reading & seeing more.
I love what you've shared in your post today. Wonderful, wonderful thoughts! And I will check out the link.
I'm wishing you a day full of beauty.

Jeni said...

It was so nice running into you yesterday shopping and what beautiful things you found.

Thanks for sharing all your great ideas!

Love to you.

Tamerie Shriver said...

I guess I'm more of a city girl, though I love the idea of living in the country. For now, though not even close to being called country, Coronado is perfect. It is definitely a 'small town' but San Diego is right across the bridge and Los Angeles is a mere 2 hours up the road.

I loved reading about the house that you and Jack built! It's just too bad that 'progress' had to deprive you of your eden. It sounds like it was absolutely perfect.

I hope you make it to Paris someday, but given what you've said, you probably won't like it much. The French countryside will be much more to your taste. Provence is lovely and I think you'd really like it there. I even liked Nice more than Paris. Don't get me wrong, I had a great time in Paris, but I like other cities much more.

Anyway, looking forward to seeing pictures of your farmhouse.

Love and hugs,

silk purse said...

I was charmed,(and perhaps even a wee bit saddened), by your lovely blog post.., I must check out Mary Jane's fab website and order her books!..,

Although my pictures for my cyber afternoon tea are not of "organic foods", nonetheless you are most warmly invited to tea my dear!..,

cheers from Wanda Lee @ The Plumed Pen

Vicki said...

Hello, Julie Marie,
I am a farm girl at heart, too. My dad was a farmer, and he loved the land. I think I inherited my love for gardening from him. I am going to see if I can find this magazine. It sounds like a wonderful one. Hope you are having a good week, dear friend! Blessings to you! Vicki

Reflections from the Stone Nest said...

Hi Julie,

I don't think you are nuts at all! I say "ditto" to the way of life you describe! I love the rural life, the slower pace. I did see Mary Jane's magazine and bought it a month ago. Loved it. Thanks for letting me know about her books.


Kelly said...

Hi Julie,
My grandmother had a large farm in West Ogden. I spent so much time growing up there. I loved it. Part of me is a farm girl too. And my husband grew up in the farmland of Ohio. He really misses it. It's hard to put into words, if you haven't ever experienced the lifestyle.
Your post was so lovely.
I also wanted to invite you to lunch next Tuesday the 16th. A few of us local blog girls are getting together (your friend Jeni Carlson is coming so you would know someone) Hope you can come.
Love, Kelly

Marydon Ford said...

G'morn, sweet Julie Marie ~ What an emotional story, you truly bend a heart with the little farm house you left behind. It will be a warm heart story when you share the pictures of the house that Jack built.

I called you twice but you weren't home, durnnit it! I will try again another day, sweet friend.

Go visit my post write today ...
Hugs of love, Marydon

Vintage Rose Collection said...

Hello angel,
This magazine looks wonderful!
I have a surpize for you on the bottom of this page link-

Love to you

Ana said...

Bonjour Julie Marie,
I'm a country/farm girl at heart too. I've never lived in a farm, but when I was a little girl my Dad use to take us on vacation every year to a small country town in Mexico where he was born...Boy, talk about a totally different way of living...much slower pace and so peaceful. I loved it. I would love to one day own my very own farmhouse...but that might never happen, you see my hubby and daughter are city folk and I'm not sure I would be able to convience them to go country :-) I do hope that one of these days you'll be able to share your scrapbook with us.

Much love to you,

Famille Gerdel said...

Bonjour Julie Marie!

I saw this magazine in Québec. Real nice!
J'ai vu ce magazine en boutique à Québec. Très joli, en effet.

Oh lucky you are to have all this beautiful collection of books!

T'es chanceuse d'avoir cette magnifique collection de livres!

Québec City