Greetings Friends and Neighbors,
Two Blue Herons flew low overhead, calling back and forth to one another, their lean bodies buffeted by the evening’s strong Southerly Winds. Early the next morning, the black Sky brightened only by the setting crescent Moon, I set out to collect a new member of the Farm Family – a glossy Jersey Calf named Johnny. He rode home nestled in the back of the Farm’s small Honda hatchback. His adopted mother, a fine-boned Jersey Cow named Josie, arrived at the Farm later that evening to meet her charge. Each had been slated for auction, the place no Cow ever wants to go and no Farmer ever wants to send them. But the economics of dairy are tight – farmers are stretched to near breaking by our thirst for cheap food. And so, when a calf is born a Boy or a Cow has trouble fulfilling her job description, the auction trailer’s weekly pick-up route offers an easy way to lighten the chore load and fetch a few hundred dollars for the Farm.
Johnny and Josie will be accepting visitors at the Soup and Bread Gift Stand on Friday 4-6pm and we would love your help welcoming them. We will have a special Soup this week – Smoky Summer Squash and Sweet Corn – as well as 240 loaves of fresh bread, all offered as a gift to anyone who is hungry for any reason. See below for information on how you can help sustain our work – the August Budget Request and our upcoming Work Day 8/23. We ask you for gifts of Money and Labor to allow us to keep the Farm running and the Stand open. We are immensely grateful for your support and honored to continue this work on behalf of these dreams for a better day.
Finding Josie and Johnny: A Story from the Farm
Making 15-gallons of soup each week this summer has drawn down the Farm’s beef freezer, and so I made some calls to inquire after Cows looking for a new home. Denny Lewis had just the gal for us, a fine 2nd calf heifer who had unfortunately lost a quarter to mastitis. Denny was over-stocked with promising younger animals, and so Josie was to be picked up by the auction trailer the next morning. “Could you come down to look at her this afternoon when I bring the cows in the barn?” When I arrived, Denny was still setting up for chores, so after we had thoroughly greeted one another he told me Josie’s ear tag number and sent me out to the pasture. Before I left the barn, I asked him, “How is she to handle?” “She’s easy with me, but I can’t say what she’ll do for you,” Denny replied. When forty-some, fly-bothered, bunched-up cows walk towards you and part just wide enough that their sides brush your arms rather than knock you over – this is a moment you know that you are alive. In the river-flow of Cow bodies, Josie walked up beside me and paused so that I could take her collar. I was sold, but told Denny I would need to find a calf for her to adopt before I could bring her home. On Friday I made another round of calls, unaware that the veal auction trailer had just been around to collect bull calves the day before. But one farmer, a young man named Johnathan Tiffany, replied that, yes, he had a vigorous Jersey calf for me. That is where I headed Monday morning in the early dark, to meet Johnathan, to walk through his barn and learn of his Cows, and to tell him some of the news from this place. This is what Farmers do on the rare occasion that one of them has left their Farm and come to pay a visit – they talk Farming and their talk is both thorough and generous. These are luminous moments, when you find yourself awash in talk of the Old Ways and then suddenly aware that you have been welcomed into a very fine Fellowship. Farming can have its way with you like this, steadily twining around your days until you realize that Farming IS your days, in addition to thinking about Farming, cooking and eating what grows on your Farm, and then, for a change of pace, telling stories from the Farm. Thank you for reading.
Here is what you will find in this letter:
- SOUP MENU for 8/21
- INVITATION: GIFT DISTRIBUTION DETAILS
- WORK PARTY: Please join us August 23rdth
- FINANCIAL GIFT REQUESTS – detailed August Budget.
With Great Care,
Adam and the Brush Brook Community Farm Team
- Brush Brook Soup – Smoked Summer Squash, Corn, Onions, Tomatoes, Bone Broth.
- Vegetarian Soup – Pureed Cucumber, Sweet Potato, Tomato and Garlic.
Please bring a pint or quart container with you from home and we will fill it for you.
INVITATION: GIFT DISTRIBUTION DETAILS
Friday 8/21, 4:00pm – 6:00 pm
Brush Brook Community Farm & Running Stone Bread
4582 Main Road, Huntington, VT.
Bread Varieties this week: Simple Wheat, Polenta, 3 Seed, Rye, Sprouted Grain, Backcountry Loaf (gf)
Would you consider coming by for bread and soup for your household, and/or some to drop off to a neighbor on your way home?
BUDGET UPDATE: Thank you for Considering the August Budget
Many heartfelt thanks to all who have responded to these invitations by sending in Financial Gifts. If you would like to support our work, you can mail checks made out to Brush Brook Community Farm to PO Box 202, Huntington, VT, 05462, bring gifts to the Bread and Soup Stand, or donate through the website. We are 100% financially supported by these personal financial gifts.
Brush Brook Community Farm and Bakery – August Budget
|As of 8/19|
|Gifts Received in August||$ 2200.00|
|Estimated Expenses for August|
|Bread Ingredients & Packaging||$ 1,115.50|
|Bakery Overhead (Insur., Electric, etc.)||$ 555.86|
|Bakery Rent||$ 300.00|
|Farm Expenses||$ 1,051.76|
|Farm/Bakery Team Requested Gifts|
|Adam Wilson Personal Living (full time)||$ 648.08|
|Adam Wilson Rent||$ 200.00|
|Erik Weil (part time) Rent/Housing||$ 500.00|
|Collin McCarthy (part time) Utilities||$ 100.00|
|Bakery Deferred Maintenance Fund||$ 400.00|
|Estimated Federal/State Taxes||$ 351.22|
|Paypal Fees||$ 75.00|
Support the Farm & Bakery
The operations of Brush Brook Community Farm & Bakery are maintained by neighborly working hands and financial gifts. Your generous monetary support propels the gift of food forward to those open to receiving it.