Violet’s farm, located in May Township – Minnesota, is a small farm that produces fruits and vegetables and raises pigs, sheep, cows and chickens. The houses and barns were built around 1904 and was operated as a farm until around 1970, when the farm was subdivided and developed into the current 10 acre parcel and bordering homes.
“To me, working on a farm is like having a front row seat at the circle of life, in all of its beauty, tragedy, majesty, simplicity, joy, heartbreak, triumph and failure. It is both humbling and inspiring on a daily basis.”
I value the connection to the land and animals, the chores, the feeling of accomplishment when I leave something better than when I found it, when I feel I have provided good and humane care, and the sense of satisfaction I derive from a well-tended garden.
My grandfather was farmer and I loved spending time on the farm while I was growing up. My ‘day-job’ is a desk job, and I craved doing something outdoors and more active. Also, I love learning new things. And I tell you what, you could have a Ph.D. in astrophysics and a pig could still teach you something. Every. Single. Day.
Though my grandfather was a farmer and I spent a lot of time on the farm, he was a grandfather, and so, though I thought I helped on the farm and did chores, I realize now that I had no idea of the work entailed in running the size of farm that he did, for the number of years that he did it. But, as a North Dakota farm girl, I do have a strong work ethic. Combine that with my love of learning and a little compassion, and there you go.
I started with chickens because chickens are pretty easy – although they seemed pretty complicated at first. I then expanded to lambs/sheep which require a little more, and then pigs which are crafty little suckers and just last year added a pair of Scottish Highland cows. Before the cows, my rule was manageability that I rated by size – 300 pounds was my limit. I have to say, my 900 pound bull is more manageable in many ways than my 300 pound ram, so there went that theory.
Although I produce a wide variety and have a pretty good output per acre, I am miniscule by comparison to many of the surrounding farms. I am also the only single woman farmer I know….