Am I the Farmer in the Dell?

I’m a city girl with family roots in dairy farming. It was a few generations ago, before WWII, but I grew up with farm stories all around me, and I was even blessed to visit my Great Auntie and Uncle on their farm in Minnesota when I was but a wee lass. I remember it with perfect clarity.

I remember the air, the smells (good, bad and interesting), the first time I saw fireflies, mucking the cow stalls, watching Uncle Milt hook his lovely ladies up to the milking machines, feeding the cats some cream so they would keep catching mice with gleeful hearts, riding the tractor and swinging on a rope swing hanging on a branch that was so high I could see into the second story windows of the house at full arc.

There are other memories that have grown in fondness over time. Back then, the kitchen garden, the fresh rhubarb dumplings and the tea cabinet were not as interesting for a kid as they are now that I’m running my own home and family life. But boy, oh boy, how I remember them today!

Last week, my family and I were invited to the farm of some friends to help them move some cows on their property. How could I possibly pass this up? The chance for my kids to see, explore and witness work on a small family farm, it was too good to miss. So off we went, my heart swelling when we hit the dirt road, my mind giddy as we visited the new puppies in the barn, and my trigger finger ready to capture pictures of the whole thing.

After hours of visiting and exploring I could not help but wonder (again), is this the life for me? I have been torn my entire life. The city vs the country. A house vs some property. A cat vs a cow.  Am I the Farmer in the Dell?

7 comment on “Am I the Farmer in the Dell?”

  1. Kathy,

    I grew up a city girl and when I was in my 20’s my husband and I purchased 110 acres in S.E. Texas.I was fortunate to be able to raise my two boys on a working ranch. Although I didn’t mind working the cows I hated the horses but my fondness was my 99 assorted fowl that I raised as pets. My boys learned so much by interacting with nature and the animals. It was a sad, sad day when we decided to return to the city in search of better opportunities. If given the chance I would move back to the country in a New York minute.

  2. Annie Cheviron,

    I am moved by the experience you and your childred had. I can’t answer the question you asked, because it of coarse is Your question, and must have Your answer. But this I can say; It appears that now you have a lot more great memories to hold onto, just because of this day. And maybe even more important, your Children have memories they never would had experienced. I love that. In my life, when I was raising my 2 boys, I always tried to ‘Look into their future’, in that, I would try to see what kind of experience it would be for them when they were adults. It was so worth it.
    I am so glad you shared this experience with us. Thank you!

    1. Comment author madme,

      Thank you for your thoughtful response Annie. I hear your mother heart, and I often think the same way. I want to give them different experiences and glimpses into different types of lives so that they will make good choices, suited to their interests, talents and calling. It makes such a difference when they talk about their own futures.

  3. Molly Hughes,

    Hello! I lived on a farm for 20+ years, raising a few cattle and hogs, a lot of dairy goats, some rabbits, chickens and turkeys, horses, etc. etc. Lots of work but I was much younger then.

    I don’t think I could do it any more but if you are young… It gives the kids a different experience and a chance to grow up in the fresh air with plenty of room to roam.

    Good luck answering your question – I think only you can!


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