I love to read magazines. It’s one of my favorite things about traveling in fact. I usually spend at least $20.00 at the store right before a trip so that I can pick up 4 or 5 (or more!). Perhaps it is my short attention span. I know a lot of it is that there are so many pretty pictures. I do so love pretty pictures. Which is probably why I like Pinterest. Whoa. Did I mention I have a short attention span? Maybe you do too? So on with my point…
Reading magazines has made me think that the ONLY way to live the life anyone really wants to live is to reside in New York or California. That’s it. All the other people in the United States of America are just poor suckers trying to get there. You can only eat “good” food in NY or C, you can only find the best spas, thrift stores, farms, vacation spots, furniture stores etc. if you live there. You want heirloom wheat? Sorry. Only in California. You want wine? Nope, again, California. Farmer’s markets? Sorry, not in the mid-west.
And what the heck is that about anyway? Why can’t I find a decent Farmer’s Market in the mid-west? Isn’t this the “heartland”, the “bread bowl” the great plains? Why can’t I get that stuff here? I should be able to stop at a roadside stand and buy stuff that is different from the stuff in the grocery store. I mean when it has the same packaging and price? C’MON!
Well today, I made a break through. All it took was a little driving off my beaten path out to a place where land is still sprawling and plentiful…yes, I mean, O’Fallon. 😀
Upon a lovely drive down Highway N today, I stumbled across a little farm; the Dickherber Family Farm. It turns out this farm is quite notorious! It is a Missouri Century Farm, which means it has been in continuous operation by the same family for at least 100 years! A lady waved me in the gravel drive and welcomed me warmly. “How can I help you today?” I told her I saw her egg sign and I’d like 3 dozen. She said ok and told me to follow her up to the house. We went inside her kitchen people!
The farm house smelled that wonderful smell of old books, fresh summer breezes and an old, old house. Her kitchen table was littered with crates of beautifully colored eggs of all different sizes. She pulled a bunch from the fridge (which was perhaps as old as the house itself…it was ancient)and we chatted and did our transaction. I was so mesmerized by it all that I have no idea how much I paid for the 42 eggs I purchased (not all for me). I just handed her a twenty and drank in the smells and the joys of my son tootling around her kitchen, petting the dog and remarking on how colorful the eggs were. It was a magical moment. I know that sounds cheesey, but she was so sweet and Chase was having so much fun and I was buying eggs…from her kitchen! Sigh.
I know, I know, it’s sad really, that my response is so silly. But since moving away from the coast, I’ve found it rather difficult to find things like farm fresh eggs from a farmer lady’s kitchen. Farmer’s markets are more like roadside produce that is exactly the same as the grocery store and that’s disappointing. What I mean is when I get carrots from a farmers market, I think they should either still be kind of dirty or have their green heads still attached. NOT be clean and in a package. It’s ok if there isn’t a lot of diversity, but I want to get fresh stuff locally. It shouldn’t be so difficult.
And it wasn’t. I needed to go off my beaten path is all. It turns out that what I want is very much within my reach. I just have to look a little harder for it.
So take that New York! And take that California! I found a farm in my own back yard that sells fresh eggs (organic, free range) and raw milk. And I bought those eggs from HER KITCHEN!
Oh yes and one more funny story before I forget. Chase, my three-year old, wanted to see the animals. The Farmer told me we could pet them and look at them and go all over the farm. She didn’t mind and she encouraged it. So we walked over to the pin where the cows were resting. There were two very young calves and a bunch of big black momma cows. Chase pet one of the calves and was so excited! Then he walked over to look at the big momma cows. (We were VERY close to them) He got very close to the fence and one big momma cow took one look at him and opened her mouth wide and said “MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO” very loudly. It scared Chase a bit. I laughed. She was looking for a little snack I think. Either way, after that he decided he would like to look at the chickens and pet the kitty…over there, away from the big momma cow. It was precious!