|Northern Michigan cherry orchard, spring|
Not growing up in agriculture, it’s an honor to be accepted into the agrarian community. I know there are good people everywhere, but … I have never met people with such integrity in my life.
This was our life, and we loved it. We worked very hard, and in later years when we would think back and talk about all that we did, we would say, “How on earth did we ever do that?”
From silly things, from handwashing. You would think – everybody thinks they know how to wash their hands, but they actually don’t. It’s understanding what’s dirty and what’s clean.
|(Sorry. I don't have any photos of sheep!)|
|Madagascar Vanilla Rooibos|
… not exactly by trial and error, but it was just doing my research first, and then making up a small batch … and tasting it, and paying attention to the effect on my own body.
Since I had made chocolate desserts, made souffles, cakes, truffles for a number of occasions over many years and had gotten a lot of praise for this, it dawned on me that chocolate was what I had to start doing as a new career.
We could make more money if we sourced everything more cheaply. And that’s what a lot of chocolate companies do. But our first ingredient isn’t sugar … we do chocolate first and foremost and then we add really great ingredients to that.
|Farm market shoppers in line for 9 Bean Rows bread|
I am re-creating the sort of little nineteenth-century farm and trying to do things the way they used to be done on a small scale. I think I’m particularly good at explaining that to [Farm Stay] guests and visitors. … There is limited use for that in life. Being a good interpreter. In museums, yes, but sadly the thing is that nobody ever makes much money in museums. So I’m right at home on a farm because you don’t make much money on a farm either.
“What are the cool things that I can do [today] with my kids? What are the cool things that I can do with my husband? That we can do as a family? And how is that going to enrich our life?”