Sharing farm life with children for two generations.


Photos & Notes from Privious Summers

 

 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007

 
Photos & Letters
From Summer 2017

Dear Barker Clan, Many years have passed since I was a visitor at your farm, yet even now these summer days invoke such sweet, strong memories of my time spent with you.  I look back fondly and know with confidence that the experiences I had there introduced me to my present.  I have no words to describe the Farm except pure magic, and I want to thank you for giving me, and so many others, the gift of a lifetime – one that continues to give no matter how old I get. With fondness, Maddy, PA (2006-2009) ~ 2017

Dear Barkers, I have been coming to your farm for five years now and always have a wonderful time.  When my parents drop me off on Monday I am always a little nervous, but this feeling soon fades away as memories of past years come back to ma and the farm begins to feel like home.  I will always remember feeding the goats and collecting eggs as well as holding little orphan lambs and baking bread. I will never forget waking up to the sound of peacocks in the morning and making my way to the barn to put on my hat and zip up my sweatshirt.  Thank you for giving me these wonderful memories. I will forever cherish them. Love, Nola ~ 2017

Dear Richard and Penny, Our son, Luke, attended the farm two weeks ago for the first time. I can’t express to you how much it meant to him and how much fun he had.  We continue to hear stories weeks later.  You farm is truly a magical place for children. Shannon
Luke’s letter: Dear Richard and Penny, I had loads of fun at the farm.  My favorite part about it was bottle-feeding Cecil the orphan lamb. I thought it was funny when Cecil sucked so hard on the bottle that froth came out of his mouth.  Thank you for the wonderful experience and I hope I can come back next year. Sincerely, Luke ~ IL 2017 
PS I love your hot cocoa your stories make me happy.

Dear Barkers, Thank you for sharing your home with me. I hope I wasn’t a hassle to have around. Thank you for the DELICIOUS FOOD!  I never knew how far you could take honey.  But above all, thank you for this unforgettable experience.  I loved the pullets!  I also loved the chicks!  I also loved the bunnies, goats, lambs, rabbits, peacocks, kittens, cats, dogs, pig, and the chickens.  The ferrets, not so much but I don’t think they liked me either.   The days have the perfect balance of work, food, free time, and goats (!)   As I sit here writing I’m washed over by all the memories.  Everything was awesome!  Sara ~ 2017

From one family.
Dear Barkers,
Last week, Natalie and Noelle enjoyed another treasured week at the farm.  Two years, and already I can't imagine their childhoods without you.  Aside from the obvious joy and fun that comes from a week on such a beautiful farm with special animals and kind people...my girls seemed to also pick up a sense of slowing down, enjoying the moment, maining a sense of simplicity. What a gift you've given them!  ...and, also, given to my husband and me.  When our family life starts to feel over-scheduled and frantic, I think back to the farm and try to find our own version of  "farmstead time".
The girls take such pride in the chores and projects they completed.  They have had many experiences that they otherwise probably never would have the chance.... The farm has truly brought out their Best Selves.
You fill our hearts with happiness. Until next year - Kate and Rob, Ohio ~ 2017
Dear The Barkers,
I love summer, because I get to see you and the animals.  I am so excited to come to the farm.  The farm is like my 2nd home.  I love the gentle animals, the chores, and the creek walk. My younger sister is coming this year: Me, Noelle, and Vivian.  We are all so excited.  See you soon Natalie  Grade 5. ~2017
Dear Barkers,
I had a great time at the farm.  I love to get the eggs.  I really like the New Games we played.  And I loved the creek walk.  It was fun to milk the goats. Love,  Vivian ~ 2017
Dear Barkers,
I had so much fun this week!  My favorite port was washing the dogs, doing chores, making hot coco and the creek walk.  Can I have the vegetable stew recipe?  Love Noelle ~ 2017

Dear Barkers, One of the things I love about the farm is the feeling you get there. So many feelings! You feel freedom, satisfaction, and you feel pure happiness.  It’s funny how you imagine yourself a apple under a tree in peace and quiet, but in reality you find yourself in the goat pen when your hair getting gnawed off.  Next year will be my 6th year.  If I could I would live on your farm.  Thank you for letting me have the experience of a lifetime. I remember my first year and you had a kid goat named Dumbo and I spent almost my whole week with that goat.  Now I have learned better and know to spend my time in different places at the farm to make more memories.  So, once again, thank you so much for the best 25 days of my life. Sincerely, Noraa ~ 2017


Dear Barker Family, I honestly don’t know where to start.  This has been my sixth year at the farm, and every year is different from the last.  It really is amazing how an experience can be so familiar yet so new at the same time, isn’t it? Every time I come back home, the farm has made me the happiest version of myself I can be.  I didn’t expect this to change my life so completely when I first went.  The most important part of the farm is the freedom you have along with the work.  I can’t think of another place that has made me enjoy doing little things (sweeping, caring for animals, carrying jugs, making beds) quite so much.  Adam feels the same way.  I know I won’t ever run out of good memories for as long as I live, and I hope to make more. Sincerely, Lauren ~ 2017


Dear Penny and Richard,   I am twenty-seven now and teaching English in Japan, but I remember fondly when I attended your farm as a child.  I remember meeting one of your children who told me he used to play his violin for hours each day.  I remember peacocks!  To a child those are magic.  I remember the old fashioned looking wind mill. I remember excitedly waking before dawn to separate cream from milk.  I remember the fantastic sausage. I came across this poem that I wrote years and years ago that I thought I would share with you about my experience.                        
Sweet Milk
Ohio – The metal lawn clippers hurt in the wedge of my hands, and lunch was fresh sausage, cheese, granola and fruit spread on red checkered cloth.
Crackers with hard, white butter.
I remember separating cream from milk in a large creamer when my eyes were still sand sealed and the sky, dark.
I found a four-leaf clover beneath a weeping willow, stored hardened tree sap—amber—in the sole of my shoe. Goats squirmed, chickens pecked the earth I seeded with yellow. Sometimes I held the pail as it filled with candy-sweet milk.
In late afternoon I sat on the floor, carding wool between metal, picking out dirt with the spiked needle teeth, like piles of soft storm clouds and snow.
At night I rocked on the porch swing dressed in flannel, kicking my feet in fast circles, cocoa braced in warm hands.
Later, crouched on braided rugs, I heard stories, fingered wooden games, set tops spinning---my hair still wet, dripping down my back framed in the light of oil lamps. I washed then dried.
Paula, Japan (formerly of WV)

 
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The Barkers, 3516 Township Road 124, Becks Mills, Ohio 44654 ~ barkers@tcsfarm.com


Last Update: 11/26/17
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