Sharing farm life with children for two generations.

Photos & Notes from Privious Summers


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Photo Highlights and Love Letters

From Summer 2012



I hope you are doing well!  I have been meaning to email ever since Sophie came home from camp, but life has been very busy. Sophie [age 7] had such a wonderful time.  She has never been away from home with people she doesn't know, and she said she felt right at home by the 2nd day.  She felt very grown up and proud of herself that she was able to spend the week away from home, and thrive while doing it! She loved all of you who live at the farm, and she loved the animals too.  She talks about her time there often, and she can't wait to go again next year! Thank you!

Lori R. -- 2012


We want to thank you all so very much for having Olivia at the farm again this year.  Like last year, she continues to tell us about her adventures.  It took an hour in the car to "calm" down..stating that she is going to miss it so much!  We can't express our gratitude.
Have a wonderful rest of your summer!

Julie and Dan - 2012


Evan & Amelia returned from Farm Camp, older, wiser, happy, chatty, independent. Amazing week, it seems. Thanks for sharing your home and your hearts with my two.

Beth D -- 2012




I just wanted to send a quick note thanking you for all that you do. Whitney had an absolutely wonderful week and has not stopped talking about it all. She is actually sad to be home :) She is already looking forward to her next trip to the farm.

Thanks again,

Kim E -- 2012



Thanks so much for another wonderful week of Daisy's childhood - I think I enjoy the drive and drop-off now as much as I enjoyed my own weeks 25+ years ago!

Best luck for the rest of the summer -

Laura T -- 2012


I wanted to thank you for the wonderful experience that you gave Lillian: she has talked about little else since she came back.


Jared B -- 2012


I'm writing to thank you for giving our daughter, Shaunacee, and niece, Farrah, a fabulous week at your farm!

They were beaming with excitement and eagerly telling me all about the Farm on our way back to Indiana.

I must say, the experience stirred a more positive and engaging relationship between Farrah and her papaw.

On the way home, she kept commenting on how she helped you both with chores and that you were both "very interesting." She really enjoyed your stories. I explained to her that her "own papaw would appreciate help on his farm and, that given the opportunity, he has interesting stories, too. 

Sunday at church I invited Farrah to go with me to take Shaunacee to church camp, but she exclaimed with delight that she was going straight home to ride on the tractor to bail hay with papaw. What a praise! She lives right next door, but she needed the experience on your farm to learn lessons papaw tried teaching. Often, kids learn from others better than their own family. And, for that, I especially thank you.

May God continue to bless your farm and all of those who learn from you!


Marcy and Carl -- 2012


I am so thrilled to see that you are still running the Country School down there in beautiful Holmes County! I attended your farm camp two summers in a row, way back in 1978 and 79! So many years have passed since then, and I'm all "grown up" now, but I remember that experience like it was yesterday. After a bit of initial homesickness, I went on to have the time of my life there! I was kind of shy back then, but being in such a beautiful place, with all of the animals and the kind Amish folks really opened up a new world for me. . . I still have dreams about that place!
Anyway, I just wanted to drop you a line and tell you how much that farm experience meant to me way backthen. I have nothing but fond memories! I remember the big milk jug in the driveway with a sign on it that read "Children Only, beyond this point". I remember your old VW van; the yellow plate in the window when it was mealtime; and among other things, the feisty white goat named Annie! She always tried to escape! Thanks again. Take care, and God bless!

Paula S. -- 2012


Once again, Camille and Ellie were thrilled to have participated in the fun work and learning of the farm with the always-entertaining Barkers.  Camille and Ellie cannot stop telling (and teaching) us all about their days last week.  Ellie came back elated that she was able to enjoy camp without feeling homesick (thank you Jonah) and has been sharing endless stories about each of the animals.  Camille, the aspiring farmer, spent the first day back home working in the yard (fully decked in Farm Camp attire) and went and bought seeds to get ready for a fall vegetable garden.   They’ve both raved about the homemade tea, the bread, the eggs, the stew (they say much better this year!), the garden food, etc.  The only problem with Farm Camp is that it really is the ONLY acceptable camp now as there is clearly nothing like it around!  Well worth our long drive there…cannot wait to return.  Thanks again for creating the perfect piece of paradise for the kids.

Katy R & Tom S -- 2012




My mother, Patty called me today to mention that she had received a brochure about your country school farm. This brought back rich memories of my time on the farm with you when I was a young child in the 1970s. I attended the Canton Montessori School in the early 70s as well. It amazes me to this day (I'm 41yrs old!), the vivid memories of the enriching environment and positive experiences that I had at Canton Montessori and the Country School Farm. On the farm, I recall churning butter, dancing on the front lawn at dusk, and chasing after fireflies. Thank you for being a wonderful teacher and role model during my early years. I will never forget you and your family or the fond memories that I have of time spent at Canton Montessori and the Country School Farm. I love your country school website and philosophy. My plan is to have my son, Graham also attend the Farm Summer Camp in 2013, when he is 6 years old.
Libby N. -- 2012



I was talking to Liam last night about going to The Country School Farm again this summer and he started to reminice.  He told me his favorite thing was to go out into the field with Richard in the wagon to harvest hay.  He remembers picking the thorns out of the bunches before tossing them into the wagon.  Who would have thought that this would be his favorite activity at the farm?!  What a wonderful opportunity to build his self confidence by doing real work that was also fun!  Kate still says the creek walk was her favorite along with getting sprayed by Ben with the hose.  Boy was it a HOT week!  I can't thank you enough for taking such good care of my lovely children.  I have to admit that I was quite nervous about leaving, especially my 6 year old, so far from home.  The fact that they asked to attend camp again this year without hesitation is a great testament to you guys.  And, they are even bringing their cousin with them this year!


Megan -- 2012




      Thank you so much for having me at the farm camp.  It was a great experience there.  I really do hope that I can come back next year.  The place is my favorite place all time.  Our nights are nothing compared to your nights.  Some of my favorite things at the farm were the goats, the ferrets, the dogs, and especially the cats.  I didn't like the cats once when one of them bit a bunny.  I loved making the food like hot chocolate and bread.  Some of my favorite things in the barn were the kittens, the hay shoot, the loft between the loft, and I especially liked the projects.  I think that farms were made for me to be at.  This farm was incredible. I also like how each one of you Barkers all have different skills.  You are very good people.  I hope that nothing bad happens during the winter.


Molly N. -- 2012


Thank you for allowing me to return so many summers. While going to the farm was great fun as a child, I think it impacted me even more when I was a little older. That experience shaped who I am today. This summer, I was able to travel to Costa Rica for a month and volunteer at a wildlife refuge
Even though we were caring for spider monkeys, macaws, tapirs, wild pigs, etc, instead of farm animals, everything about the place reminded me of the happiness and tranquility I always felt at the farm. I am considering working at an animal refuge or national park as a career, which was influenced by my time spent at the farm more than any other experience. I hope you are all very well. I think of the farm fairly often, and it always makes me smile.
Rachel S, -- 2011



Summer is quickly becoming a distant memory but not a day goes by that Duncan and Ainsley don't bring up the farm!  They had such a wonderful experience living on the farm, something that they would otherwise never have the opportunity to do.  They both have to wear uniforms to school but whenever they can, they wear their farm shirts like a badge of honor. This week at Ainsley's school, they have special days to celebrate the week. Today is "Read my tee-shirt day".  Yes, you guessed it! Ainsley is wearing her farm shirt.  Later in the week she'll be wearing her straw hat for "hat day".  As parents, we are enjoying the stories they tell and the expressions on their faces whenever they talk about camp.  They light up!  They have already started to save money for next years camp and are greatly looking forward to it.  Thank you so much for enabling our children to have such a memorable experience. 


Robin F. -- 2011






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Last Update: 11/26/17
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