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News from the Farm

Posted 9/19/2018 9:08am by Christy and Chris Kantlehner.

It is with sadness that I am sharing with you the passing of my grandmother, Mary Alice Ewing Raymond. She lived 96 healthy and fortunate years, surrounded by family. She died peacefully Sunday Morning after suffering a stroke on Wednesday. She was comfortable and in her home with family, including her daughter Anni, who has an amazing capacity for caregiving and has patiently, lovingly cared for Grammie during these most intense final months. Also with her all weekend was her granddaughter, Hannah Raymond, who is a nurse practitioner, and brought the whole family confidence and comfort during the difficult moments towards the end. 

Grammie, or Ganga, was the matriarch here at the farm. She was born in the  white house across the street from the farmstand and passed on in the very same house. She patiently tolerated her granddaughter's hairbrained idea of starting a farm at her house. She was my roommate for nearly a decade and my top correspondent when I was traveling in Europe working on farms the year before I started White Barn Farm. Grammie taught me how to make a bed. She was a titan of hospitality, keeping so many guest rooms at the ready and always making sure each visitor had a full set of fresh towels. She taught me to never leave the tea kettle empty - a discipline in thoughtfulness and consideration. She was methodical, thorough, and precise. Her flawless hand printing identified each one of our seedlings for the first five or so plant sales each spring at the farm. Her famous green felt tip pen and yellow lined notebooks listed and organized each family event. She would love to have everything just so. She loved flowers and birds and kept a beautiful bird sanctuary outside the picture window looking out from the kitchen sink. "Hello, Mr. Cardinal!" I can hear her saying. I wish I could have given her the perfectly edged English garden style landscape I'm sure she would have preferred, but my style turned out to be a little more wild. As I transitioned from hobby gardener/waitress to farmer to mama/farmer I am afraid the landscaping became even wilder. I am certain, however, that she appreciated a salad of freshly picked lettuce, farm cucumbers, a truly ripe cantaloupe, big luscious tomatoes for tomato sandwiches, boiled new potatoes with butter, salt, and parsley. She certainly enjoyed watching the wagon of flowers going by, always amazed that all that color was hiding somewhere out in her back yard! As crazy as we may have driven her, she loved to just sit on the porch or in a chair looking out from the barn, watching all of the activity go by. For years, she had the good fortune of her children and their families living nearby, her kitchen being grand central, all of the youth keeping her young. The advent of the farm just brought it to another level. For the first few years of the farm, we actually made farm lunch for the crew and, of course, Grammie. She was a character that our staff, past and present, will not soon forget. Her services are at the Trinity Episcopal Church, where her father was the minister, this Sunday at 1pm.

Strangely enough, we had already scheduled our annual farm celebration, the Harvest Moonshine, for the day before, on Saturday. Avi Salloway, who organized, promoted, and booked acts for the Moonshine Music Series, from a few years back, is returning for our once a year celebration. It is this Saturday, September 22nd, the Fall Equinox! from 4pm to 8pm, both Billy Wylder and The Ladles will be performing. Tickets are $20 day of or $15 when purchased in advance at the farmstand this week or online (but that may include a service fee). Kids 12 and under are free. We are proud to support bands who create original music and make composing and performing their life's work. Marty Pearson's magical pizzas that you may have enjoyed during our plant sale will be for sale. Our farmstand will be open late, until 6pm. See the Facebook Page for more details. Bring your lawn chairs but please don't bring any pets. Park at the farmstand if you are physically able. A police officer will be supervising pedestrians crossing 1A. Throw a headlamp in your bag for extra safety crossing after the close of the show.

 

Sonya and Luke Harms from Harms Family Farm are bringing more of their fantastic Massachusetts Maple Syrup!

Laurene Hulbig will be making fresh flower crowns! 

You can pick out a pumpkin from White Barn Farm! Come early and walk around the back field to see where we grow all that good food!

Fairmount Fruit Farm is bringing apples!

Treehouse Farms will have chickens, woolen goods, and sweet annie wreaths.

The Harvest Moonshine is a time for good clean fun for all ages!