“Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony.” Mahatma Gandhi

That is clearly very wise wisdom, and each day I start out with that as my intention. I usually come into problems when I encounter the first other person that day! I have for a long time been convinced that my thoughts are out there for the world to see. This is particularly clear for me when I am in company with someone with whom I have a strong psychic connection. Friday Clare and I were pouring out seeds from our stash into packets to send to Ellen for her annual birthday gift. Clare poured out some carrots, and I thought, “I wish she would give her more of those.” Instantly Clare said, “Oh, I can give her some more if you would like.” What if we only had constructive thoughts, assuming that folks are truly “listening in?” I picked up a tip in a recent audio book titled, “Unlock Your Subconscious” by Joseph Dispenza. He referenced a Sufi practice from The Three Gates of Right Speech – https://www.spiritualityandpractice.com/practices/practices/view/27655/the-three-gates-of-right-speech. Is it honest, is it necessary, and is it kind? As I prepare to speak I try to run through these tests when I start thinking. It is a great start on the harmony referenced above.

Never too early to join the CSA
We jumped in CSA subscriptions this week, and are now only $3700 behind last year at this moment. We will keep up with our stats on this one and report to you our progress. The CSA pays the bills, plain and simple. We shelled out $1750 this week for organic certification, for example. It is pretty exhilarating to go down to the greenhouse to watch everyone germinating. Presently we have kale, chard, onions, and leeks who have made the decision to burst into life.
You can sign up here – https://mhof.net/community-supported-agriculture/
And if you are already a member and can help us with outreach, contact me at Julie@mhof.net. We can discuss ways to reach out to your friends and relatives. We now have pick up sites in Barre, the Barre Health Center, Holden twice, Worcester, Princeton, Gardner, Shrewsbury, and Sutton.

Large shares in the bag on August 8

Newly germinating kale.

Food Corner:  Carrots
Carrots are a root vegetable that is grounding and nourishing.  They can be eaten raw or cooked, however cooking unlocks many of the nutrients to be more easily digested and absorbed by the body.  They are known to be a great vegetable to support the eyes due to its high beta-carotene content.  They are a good source of Vitamin A and K.  They also supply a fair amount of potassium, fiber, calcium, iron and vitamin C.

Here is a link to my own recipe, Ginger Turmeric Carrot Soup served with roasted chickpeas and topped with dandelion greens.  Enjoy!  ~Jennifer Peck~

Agriculture Education
Graeme Sait this month talks about wood vinegar and its many uses. He also has a good sauerkraut recipe. https://anchor.fm/nutrition-farming/episodes/Biostimulation—Boosting-Plant-Performance-and-Protection-e1et625

Working Shareholders
We added another Deb to our cadre of working shareholders this past week. Deb is from Rutland and a joyous addition. We also were happy to welcome back Ian, a student at WPI. Read more here on what working shareholders “get” – https://mhof.net/volunteer-at-mhof/ . Clare and I independently came to the same conclusion this week that we are looking forward to cultivating a vibrant working shareholder community. We still have some room.

Our new Deb helping with the omnipresent wood collection.

Ian helping with collection of sand bags for tarping.

Volunteer Spotlight:
Laurie, a Bio-Chemist for 35 years, describes herself as an “overly extroverted and curious person”.   She loves to learn and is an avid reader.  She believes “variety is the spice of life.”  She came to us as a volunteer last April when she was looking to get out of the isolation that COVID created.  Working on the farm has granted her the opportunity to meet new people, learn new things, and be out in nature.  Lauri loves that every day brings new chores and activities.  She has especially enjoyed the opportunity to learn to cook with fresh organic produce.

A Dog’s Life
Most of us don’t have to worry about getting nailed by a porcupine, but there comes a time in the life of every farm dog when they learn who is boss – and it ain’t them! Deb arrived on her first day of work Monday to advise me that Dingo had about 30 quills in his lip. So we busied ourselves in pulling out the first 15 or so until Dingo couldn’t handle the pain anymore. After lunch we took it up again, this time with Kamarin in charge. He instructed Deb, Luke and me to help him flip Dingo over on his back while he held him on his lap and proceeded to extract the remaining quills. It was a moment of great bonding for all 5 of us. And hopefully Dingo is now older and wiser!

Jobs At MHOF
Well, we don’t have any at the moment. We may be looking around for summer help when things get really intense. So reach out if that might be a situation that fits your schedule.

On Farm videos on this and that

Preparing yellow dock for drying.

Making tapioca pudding.

The tractor cart – making do.

Gathering what finally totaled about 270 bags
of sand for our tarping operation in the pond field.

Jonathan spraying the soil in ahead of the tarps – 2 cups of sea shield, 2 cups of rejuvenate and 1 t. of Spectrum.

Farm store hours
M-F – 12-1 pm
Tuesday 5-7
Friday 5-7
Always call ahead to be sure of supply.

Available this week

  1. Free range organic eggs at $8/dozen – we newly added free choice kelp to their now full farm free range lifestyle.
  2. holy basil, burdock, in 2 ounce bottles – $12
  3. frozen certified organic applesauce – just the apples cooked down in water – $7/quart
  4. 2 ounce jars of comfrey salve – $10 each
  5. 2 ounce jars of hemp salve – $10 each
  6. 2 ounce jars of calendula salve – $10 each
  7. garlic powder – $10/2 ounce
  8. frozen pork stock – $7.50/quart
  9. frozen chicken stock – $7.50/quart
  10.  frozen pork cuts –regular ribs, ground pork and roasts – $12/lb.
  11.  ham and bacon – $18/lb.

Farm Doins
This week we had a focus on getting the old shingles off of the garage and new tar paper down. We did it around a wind storm and a snow storm. Many thanks to Gary, Luke and Kamarin, some help by me and Clare and a final push on Friday by John, Stu, and Danny. Jonathan fearlessly led us through the whole project with Jack helping from the sidelines. We accomplished our goal by Friday at noon – just in time for another storm on Saturday!

Clare casting abandon and old shingles to the wind.

John and Stu on the steep side demolitioning.

When I complimented Stu on the fast roof job, he returned, “I have done a few of these in my life!”

Danny and Jonathan on the back side lying down tar paper.

Almost done!

Complete. Shingles next week with Chuk.

Jonathan, the roof boss.

The other big task was that of getting down tarps to start the dying and decomposition process of the vegetable crop and cover crop residue where we will be planting this spring. We got 5 tarps in place on Wednesday, 1 on Thursday and 2 on Friday. 5 more tarps to go.

2 down and 3 to go on Wednesday.

Loading snowy and muddy tarps into tractor buckets can be fun.

All 270 bags down and ready to cover the tarps.

What a hard physical morning we had!

The other thread we worked on last week was to preparer the orange house for planting of chard and kale. We only had one day on it and only Deb and Clare and I could afford the time but we got about 1/3 of the house prepped (removing tough perennials) . We will finish that job this week.

Looks like warm weather coming up this week. I wish you all the best in your adventures.