I think this pic really says what our farm life is all about. Friends, the land, the blue skies, the fruit of the land (in the hand on the left), all together and embracing each other. wow.
We talk a lot about our chef friends (Tom Leavitt is the tall hatted figure, chef of his own White Oak Gourmet Personal Chef Service in Chicago). It is interesting how a business relationship can turn into some truly beautiful friendships. We care about their businesses and what they are serving, how they are surviving, because it directly relates to our farm business surviving. But, it ends up more than that. We get to experience their incredible artistic talents that highlight products that we've put our blood, sweat and tears (and joy) into.
We also come home with the latest news...who is getting married, who is having a kid, who is moving on (we miss you Brian). And, we sometimes are able to follow our chefs to their new ventures (check out Bistro One West in St. Charles where our friend chef Doug D'Avico is creating delicious dishes). It is our circle of friends, our family.
The chefs also love coming to the farm. And we love that! We have visitors from all over the world come to Spence Farm for tours. The chefs come and get to play in the dirt with us, taste the food right off the vine and right out of the soil, and learn about how animals can be raised with glorious sun and great care. It is sometimes a first time experience, some have never set foot outside the city before, and to bottle feed a calf is such an amazing experience for city kids (I grew up city too, so know this first hand).
So...thanks to all our chef friends and family. We really appreciate all you do. Thanks for believing in our farm and in our way of life and letting us share it with you.
To everyone else...don't forget that when you support the restaurants that purchase products from local farmers, small family farms like ours, you are supporting us and our farms. Thanks for that! We wouldn't be doing this if it wasn't for all of you enjoying great food. And, if you want to come for a farm visit...contact us. We love to share our farm and would be glad to work out a time to have you come.
Watch for farm tours, crop mobs, and farm programs of all kinds on our website, on the blog, and with other organizations like 350.org, Slow Food, and our own Spence Farm Foundation (under revision as I write).
Thanks to Cristina Rutter (check out her cool site) for the wonderful pics at the Crop Mob last fall, organized by Tom Leavitt and sponsored by 350.org and Spence Farm Foundation.