So it’s been awhile – like, 5 months, awhile – that I’ve posted anything here. While I’ve been away, lots of stuff has happened.
Christmas. My son’s 2nd birthday (for which I was deathly ill and made just two quick appearances before slouching back up to my germ-infested bedroom). #farm365 ended. New babies were announced (who horsey, not for us). I finished another season of curling. My daughter got glasses. I’ve registered for another 10K race in Toronto at the end of June.
And… oh yeah!
I finished my book.
*wide, slightly psychotic-looking grin spreads across face*
The reason I had decided to take a break from blogging was so I could spend the month of November writing my book. It was a very successful month in my opinion, as I managed to knock out approximately 57,000 words in 30 days. I was pretty excited when November 30th came because I’d made the commitment to write every day and get this story out of my head. And I did it.
But my book wasn’t done.
I ended up taking a month off of novel writing (because, Christmas) and eventually finished my book around mid-February at a whopping 87,000 words and change. There is still much work to be done before the book is ready to be shown to a publisher but I’m actually looking forward to the editing process. I have a lot of ideas for how I want to shape this book and it’s just really cool to think that I’m that much closer to realizing my lifelong dream of becoming a published author.
I’ve even tossed around the idea of creating a blog-a-book section here. That basically means that, as I edit and continue to shape the story, I would post sections of it for you to read and give feedback on (GULP). Eventually, I will need beta readers to read the entire manuscript and give me valuable feedback so I can essentially create the best version of my book that I can before pitching it to a publisher. What do you think? Would you be interested in reading my book, or parts of it, here?
On the farming/Ag front, all has been going well on the farm. But Andrew and I had a pretty cool day just yesterday. Farm & Food Care had their annual general meeting in Milton, Ontario, and they awarded Andrew the FFC Champion for 2016. It’s an award that recognizes an individual in agriculture who puts forth “outstanding efforts as an agricultural advocate, promoting awareness in and appreciation of food and farming in Ontario.” (that’s the description on the award! LOL) The best part was that it was a complete and total surprise for him to be chosen. He had no idea that he was getting the award so when they announced his name, he was speechless (and even a bit emotional. Aw!). You can see a pic of the plaque he received on my Instagram.
Even though I may be a little bit biased, Andrew is very deserving of this award. He has done so much over the past year, with #farm365, for the industry and for agriculture overall, promoting awareness and communication between farmers and consumers. I could not be more proud of my husband, that’s for sure!
A special thanks to Kelly, the FFC team, Lucia and the rest of the folks who nominated and supported Andrew for this award. You’re all awesome!
Gear switch. Getting back to the blog.
One other thing I did over the past 5 months was strongly debate whether to continue with this blog. It actually used to cause me a lot of stress, if you can believe that. But I think most of that stress was manifested by what I “thought” I should be blogging about and all the things I “should” be doing with it.
Yesterday at the FFC AGM, we all had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Kevin Folta speak. Dr. Folta is someone who I’ve followed for awhile now and who has been through a LOT over the past 12 – 18 months (to save time, go ahead and Google him). His main message throughout his talk yesterday was that farmers and consumers have shared values. We all worry about our food supply. We all worry about the environment. We all worry about how we are supposed to feed an exploding population.
We are all on common ground when it comes to food.
But the disconnect comes when the consumer begins searching for information. It’s coming from the wrong sources – people and organizations who do not have our best interests at heart. It’s NOT coming from farmers or scientists or the Ag industry. And that’s our fault.
So instead of quietly letting this blog float away into an abyss of abandonment, I have decided to step up. I have decided to dig in and remember why I started this blog in the first place – which was to not only chronicle my running and our life on the farm but tell the stories about dairy and agriculture that people want and need to hear. To give you the information you need to make an informed decision about the food you consume; where it comes from, how it is raised and why that matters to all of us.
Farmers are consumers too. There was talk yesterday about the “us vs. them” attitude that we all sometimes get when talking about how best to provide “the consumer” with the information you want. But being divided doesn’t work; it just inhibits the Ag industry’s ability to get the correct, scientifically supported information out to the people who want it.
And that’s all of us.
So, I’m back. More consistently than before, with more variety, more info and, gosh darnit, more fun! Whether you’ve been following me for awhile or are relatively new here, thank you for being here. I hope you’ll think of reaching out if you have any questions about your food or farming in general. But if not, no worries. I’m just glad you’re along for the ride.
Featured image by H Creates Graphic Design.