This is MaryGate Farm at dawn, a scene we can enjoy from our front deck every morning. What a grace to live in the country where you wake to roosters, crows, owls and other morning birds. And at night you go to sleep with the frenetic chatter of frogs enjoying our pond.

As the day commences, we greet all of the hungry mouths of MaryGate – wide open for the moment they have been looking forward to all night – breakfast! Of course, this nanosecond of time is followed with – you are kidding this is all/ No more? Sometimes you believe you have been transformed into a large bag of feed.

The milking goats are in high cotton however. They queue up at the milking stand because they know they can trade milk for grain. No matter, their lovely milk gives us cheese, ice cream and the wherewithal to make our lovely soaps and lotions! If you haven’t tried our products are you in for a treat!

For instance, my husband actually looks forward to shaving! Here is a guy who used to take time out every night to pluck his beard hoping it would not grow back! I thank God he is not headed towards the Duck Dynasty look! Thanks goats!

We have gotten lots of feedback on the efficacy of our soap and that makes us really happy to provide something that heals and brings delight. Bernard, our son, besides being beekeeper, farm manager, farrier, construction guru, and problem solver, makes our soap. He successfully translated eleven years of bomb disposal for the Air Force into a chemical fascination with formulas. This is excellent because I found out early on you can’t make soap like an entree!

Leo, the husband and provider, graciously funds our adventure. He drives forty five minutes each way to work and writes software for eight hours a day. What a noble sacrifice for us and the animals! Besides that he is the chicken and egg genius for which I am glad – not a chicken lover myself! He has the task of equipment maintenance and with Bernard the ongoing repair work that plagues even the most well run farms.

Clare, our daughter, has come for a short stay and is the beauty and creative brain of the outfit. Her instinct for making new things and the courage to take them on has given us a tremendous boost. She is envisioning new products that will help us improve and bring beauty and pleasure to others. It is such a blessing and so much fun to add her to our “mix” here. And as for a mom sheer delight to have children home again and reaching out for their futures.

Me? I get to pick up manure! And to dabble in all of the above (except don’t let me around the equipment).

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