Huckleberry Hill Herb and Fruit Farm is our home and our livelihood. We worked hard to be where we are right now. At one time, our lives felt very much out-of-sync like we were walking a path not quite right for us. Actually, “not quite right” doesn’t really describe the path accurately. Sometimes instead of a calm winding path through rolling hills and valleys, it felt as if we were walking through mud pits, along gravel hillsides and off high cliffs. Finally, at 49 (as we’re the same age, just six months apart), we knew it was time to move towards something that was more meaningful to us.
- Be outdoors more often and connect with nature.
- Live a healthy life with good food grown primarily by our own hands.
- Pay as we go living with as few expenses as possible.
- Be involved with a community. I had been a teacher, so I wanted to work with children in some fashion, as well as just being a part of a community and getting to know people.
- Find a livelihood that matched our interests where we could make enough money so we didn't have to worry so much. We live simply, so we knew we didn't need a lot.
After much soul searching and reaching back to remember what it was we enjoyed doing, we determined that Rich liked to work with his hands, and not drilling thousands of Scrabble tiles over and over like he does for our business. Instead, he'd rather be fixing and planting things – keeping busy on projects.
As for me, I have always had a passion for herbs and cooking. For many years now, I have found the effect herbs, and other healing foods, can have on the body and mind fascinating. When I walk through an herb garden, my soul is calm, yet I am energized. I soak up as much knowledge as I can about healing, nutritious foods, and especially the ones we could grow ourselves! I knew my life needed to be about plants - planting them, tending them, cooking with them, sharing with others about them...
It seemed clear. We had a little piece of land. We had the desire to create a farm. We would grow herbs and fruits that would benefit us and others. We would sell these wonderful foods, along with our healing herbal teas and products, to the community and share the value of these important foods. If they wanted to grow some themselves, we would provide whatever assistance we could whether it be chit-chat about the area's growing potential, advise on what's worked for us or offering plant starts. We would raise hens that would give fresh eggs for our family and some to sell to the community. Eventually, we would rescue a couple of additional farm animals like goats and maybe expand our farm just a little.
Now, every day, I wake up and look forward to learning more and working outside. We still have rocky patches along our path once in a while because, well, that’s life. We continue to work at our home business while building up the farm, but now we know that we're on the right path at last.