City girl. Seriously. When I was in first grade I colored the flames of a stove blue, because a gas stove with blue flames was all I had ever seen. Got it wrong along with the fact that it’s not a good idea to cook on an open flame with flowy sleeves ala Lisa Douglas from Green Acres, which is also a fire hazard. We had firemen come to the classroom to talk about fire safety that day in first grade and to quiz us on what we had learned. Those lucky first graders that colored the right picture would win a red plastic fireman’s hat. But oh, I loved Eva Gabor’s style on Green Acres and one of the pictures was dressed like her in the kitchen! So, I didn’t get a plastic fireman’s hat because I selected style over safety that day. I’m not bitter and I can tell you some things have not changed. I was born and raised in Las Vegas. The kid of immigrant parents that worked in casinos. When school would start, our first day back was with empty cigar boxes for our crayons, scissors and glue. Take a whiff of that fine cut tobacco! With all the billboards around town showcasing blonde, big breasted showgirls, I grew up thinking thongs were normal underwear for adult woman and was busy giving myself wedgies at the age of six because I just COULD NOT WAIT to grow up. I didn’t give country life a thought in my Shaun Cassidy obsessed mind (I had a thing for Parker Stevens but my mother swears it was Shaun). My first-time camping was with my brownie troop, but that event was marred by the Boy Scouts that were there that weekend as well as a male scout leader that was a bit touchy with the girls catching them in the water as they jumped in off the swing. All the girls would screech and swim away whenever he was nearby. I remember the perplexed look on his face. Ugg, but that’s a story for another time.
I was never one to dream of green pastures, rolling hills and cozy afternoons. I had envisioned as a kid in Las Vegas that I would live the jet set city life, reveling in modern conveniences and the automation that shows like the Jetsons and movies like Star Wars were pointing us towards. When we visited Mexico in the summertime, we had some relatives that still used outhouses. WHAT?! Also, they had cows that they could obtain milk from and promptly offered it to me. Uh, no thank you, I would like some milk in a plastic gallon jug that came from the grocery store, not this still warm from the cow cloudy mess you are offering me. My cousin scoffed, the way cousins do, and downed the thick, creamy heifer nectar as a show of country know how besting big city smarts. You go girl, I thought. You go ahead and keep that thick sludge that who knows where that cow has been has provided you. I was not ashamed. By the time the 80’s rolled around, with the Space Shuttle and shows like Knight Rider, everyone was convinced that by the time we hit the year 2000 we would all have robots and be zooming around in jetpacks.
Right. Close, but not close.
So here we are about 30 years later and there are TONS of modern conveniences for shopping, meeting people, learning- heck a large percentage of modern relationships got their start on the internet. Mine did. It’s become so easy. Too easy. Impersonal. Cold even. You can curate yourself a life of shabby chic with all the websites, Pinterest posts and catalogs. Access to Amazon Prime and an American Express can have you sitting and sipping in the lap of veritable luxurious laziness. With aromatherapy oils and a latte made with almond milk. I jest, I love almond milk and lavender oil too. However simple and fast loses something that you gain from creating yourself. Something basic but it generates so much warmth from your own accomplishment. I think there comes a time in everyone’s life where the rat race gets to be too much, and the things you were killing yourself to achieve, just don’t feel that special anymore. More and more I started to recognize that trait in the people around me at work and it didn’t feel cool or like being part of a team. It felt like my abilities and what I brought to the table were a commodity to be bought and traded or deemed junk bonds. It felt demoralizing.
I get it. I remember the thrill of coming out on top. But like they say, its lonely at the top- and cold and just as quickly as you get there, the steep descent exists to test your anti-anxiety meds.
So again, how did I get here? I left it. I walked away because I didn’t like what was around me and I didn’t feel that my being there was contributing in a meaningful way. My poor husband gave in to my pleading and we worked a budget out to see what we could manage. And here we are, living in the smallest town with neighbors that are near, but not close. We are far away from the city lights. We can hear coyotes at night and apparently, I hear tell that there are feral hogs in the nearby woodlands. Also, something is slithering in at night to my chicken coop and stealing my eggs! Water from a well, that’s something new to me too and I have to admit it I am at a low-level panic because I watched too many episodes of Bonanza as a kid where the well water would get poisoned or worse, run out. But its lovely and I yearn for more acreage to buy greater distance from me and everyone else, because I’m weird in that I love company but crave solitude and privacy. A veritable enigma, I am.
I’ve written before. Completed a novel. Failed at getting it published because EVERYONES a writer. Everyone has a story to tell. I love the story telling but what I relish more is the development of characters. The kind of people that exist in the background whose story is just as compelling as the protagonist, but even better, because they’re not called on to save the world.
Along with a novel, I also have a children’s bedtime story that I KNOW would kill on the NY Times Best Seller List and give that annoying Elf a run for his money and it looks just like that Elf, I’m going to have to self-publish it if I want to see anything come of it. I plan on offering it here on SoFarmish very soon.
What I don’t want to do- I don’t want to tell you that there is only one way- or that my way is the best. Homemade is rewarding but getting it on the table on time feels good too. No judgement here if canned or frozen gets the job done. I just want to give you inspiration to delve further into every possibility. And if it works for you then I’m thrilled and if it doesn’t, well poop. I think that’s why at first I wanted to name the blog “Your mileage may vary” after the very, very old, I’m talking 1996 old, internet idiom that says, hey -it might not work the same way for you. Unfortunately, most folks that I tried this out on were like, uhhh what? They didn’t get it. What I’m trying to say is, try it- like it- leave it- lump it. You might even look at a post for a recipe and think, YUCK. Or maybe you say, ok yeah I see it but I think it would be better with X, Y or Z. And that would be cool too, especially if you share with me how you tweaked the mileage, errr I mean recipe.
I like nice things, check it- I like comfortable things and the cheaper the better. So no $3000 chafing dish will be featured here because, ewwww. I love to entertain but prefer the company and conversation to reign rather than the crudités. So along with comfort I want to incorporate ease and accessibility. No use in featuring a cool recipe that calls for an out of season ingredient or one that you have to hike the Himalayas to procure. By the way, is Pink Himalaya Salt still a thing? Why?
Do you want to try a quilt? Me too. How about growing your own tomatoes, making a pasta sauce and then canning them? Me too! Help a goat deliver her first kid? No? Ok, we’ll work our way up to that, I promise.
Why SoFarmish? Because once I got a taste for country life and the gentle lull of slowing down, I didn’t want to just full in immerse myself. I still wanted to be modern and citified but with a down home, warm from the oven feel. I’ve moved twice now since we made the trek from a large metropolitan city and each move has been even further out, on more land. Because it feels good to be away, far enough to feel secure and private but close enough to still get Starbucks (which by the way is now a 40-minute drive for me).
I’m a regular woman, with a husband, adult and teen kids, three dogs a cat some chickens and two half-sister goats that I’m looking to have bred. Its busy time and laid back time always out here, but that’s why we embrace it all and declare our efforts SoFarmish.
Join me. One of us, one of us, one of us…..just kidding. No really, come along