I was always referred to as the “city girl” when I made it out to the farm to visit family. I was, so it didn’t offend me. And, it was good natured, and came from every direction – from uncles, cousins and my grandpa.
Compared to the sleepy farm town they lived in – tucked up in the thumb of Michigan – my hometown of Grand Rapids was a bustling metro area.
I always loved visiting, though. Chasing kittens through the shed, pretending to drive a tractor, playing basketball in the hayloft.
And, if we were lucky and visited during the harvest, we’d be sent off with a paper bag full of fresh corn on the cob.
Life almost doesn’t get any better than that.
My grandparents grew other things, too, like sugar beets and soybeans, oats and wheat. My mom was a sugar beet queen, I think. That was a thing there – vegetable royalty.
It’s part of the reason why today was kind of a moment. Ron and I are bringing a little Michigan to our backyard. We’ve spent months transforming what was a bunch of dead space in the yard to give it more utility.
We’ve repositioned all the things the kids love, and we have carved out a sizable chunk of land for agriculture. We’d have a garden, we thought, when we started.
But no. This is a micro-farm. In the city. And, we’re planting a crop that put food on the table for my family for years.
So yeah, this city girl, who moved to an even bigger city, is about to become an urban micro-farmer. That’s not right. We are urban micro-farmers, already.
We’ve shoveled truckloads of compost, built beds for our crops and we’ve purchased the fun hats that will keep us from overheating as we take care of everything we will be growing. We’re even to the point of considering an outdoor shower, which would be amazing (sorry neighbors).
We’re working on a name for our operation, even though we have a working one in place that we use with each other, and we’re close to securing a water capture tank.
There is so much more to come, but this weekend we celebrated filling those beds and continuing a family legacy – on a smaller, less experienced scale.
Can’t wait for the first harvest.