Hands-On Enthusiasm & Gratitude

herding-goats-300x200 Williams winter study making cheeseOnce again, we are in the midst of hosting a Williams College Winter Study Class at the farm engaging with them in a great, hands-on, learning adventure.  The week combines hands-on activities with conversations with farmers, journalists, policy makers, and others in the food system focused on how to make our food system more sustainable, environmentally, fiscally and from a labor perspective.   And the Williams College students, bunked up in close quarters, shadow some of the same group dynamics of the herds out in the animal section of the barns and of the vast network of individuals and institutions comprising Vermont’s Farm to Plate movement.


williams students at Mountain Deer Taxidermywilliams winter study shaping butter Williams winter study at table

And it is an opportunity for us, as the hosts, to see our farm, our products and our community with fresh eyes and have our well’s refilled by the gratitude emerging from the students.  Gratitude for the meals, prepared from our healthy livestock and plants, with all of their colors, tastes and nutrition.  Gratitude for the range of learning opportunities packed into a day from visiting Mountain Deer Taxidermy to learning to make butter & cheese with Earthwise Farm to a conversation with the editor of Local Banquet and founder of Humaneitarian.org.   Grateful for being with a group of people who are interested in food and care about how it is grown in this special part of Vermont.

Their gratitude is grounding and reminds us of some of the reasons we continue this venture despite it’s challenges.

We are grateful for the hope, determination and commitment to sustainable food and a sustainable world that these young folks carry.  And for the great conversations and opportunities their week on farm brings to us as farmers and our community.  Thanks to their program, we are able to offer two interesting conversations open at no charge to our entire community.  A conversation with the Milk with Dignity campaign, focused on justice for migrant workers  as well as a conversation with Author Barry Estabrook about his new book, Pig Tales: An Omnivore’s Quest for Sustainable Meat

We hope you will join us this week on this learning adventure and find your own new nuggets of gratitude.

williams butter heart gratitude