When we purchased these few acres in 1985, this farm needed help! Buildings had fallen in disrepair; bull thistles reined. They towered over our heads, their stalks as thick as our wrists.  Yet bull thistles were the least of our worries. The roof of the old farm house leaked and the plastered ceilings were falling like rain.

We fixed and patched, covered the walls with wall paper, and then lived luxuriously in the grand old farm house. The Baby Bears had lots of room to run. They learned to roller skate in the long hallway upstairs and aimed their BB guns in the hand-dug basement.

Meanwhile … this Momma Bear was happy. She had space to garden, land for planting apple trees, evergreens, and shade trees.

Papa Bear didn’t understand the need for dirt and green things but he truly believed if Momma Bear was happy, everyone was happy. So Momma gardened.

theresheleansAnd gardened.

And gardened.

Today we grow on five acres.

All the old buildings (including the old house) are gone except the old leaning-farther-every-year barn. It still provides a home for the most talented flier of birds, the barn swallow. We are loath to pull the old barn down. What would our barn swallow friends do when they returned in the spring to find their beloved home no more?

Now grandchildren are beginning to join us as we work this land. What joy to have them follow us to each garden and field as we till, plant, and weed! Hopefully, dirt and green things will someday make each Baby Bear as happy as it has made this Momma.