Sap, Soap, and the "Patrons of Husbandry" Hall

Dateline: 29 March 2006

I think spring has finally come to central New York State. The sap is flowing and we are making maple syrup on our little back yard setup. I've come to realize that our 25 taps do not produce the sap flow that some folks get because our trees are not that old. A few don't give much at all. In any event, we've made 2-1/2 gallons of nice maple syrup so far and there is another gallon+ worth of sap boiling away in the evaporator pan now. When it's done, we pour it hot into pint canning jars and store it in the pantry.

Marlene has soap on her mind these days. She is making it to have for the farm market this summer. And there are a few retail outlets that she will be selling through too. Christina Fuller (KS Milkmaid) is learning to make soap and going through the typical heartache and discouragement that comes with learning the craft. But she will be a real professional at it one day soon! Practice makes perfect.

I had the pleasure of speaking with KS last night when she called to talk with Marlene and I answered the phone because Marlene wasn't home. It was exciting to talk to a famous person. Christina sounded just like she does in her Plain Talk interview!

I also spoke this week for the first time with fellow Christian agrarian, Franklin Sanders in Tennessee. We had a good chat about everything from chicken pluckers to dispensational eschatology to prisons to homeschooling and public schooling to the feminization of boys... and more.

In my last blog entry I told you about how the old Grange hall outside of Moravia is for sale and that we were thinking of buying it. Well, today I gave them a purchase offer for the property. Next Tuesday the 12 remaining members of the Grange will meet to see if they will accept my offer. I'll let you know how it goes.

By the way, I found out that the Grange was also known as the "Patrons of Husbandry." I think husbandry is such a sweet word. It is rarely used these days. I want to be a husbandman of the soil. I guess, in a way, I am. Anyone who actively cares for the land that God has entrusted to them is a husbandman. I think Wendell Berry wrote something about husbandry. I'll have to see if I can find it.

Another sign of spring..... I saw my first farmer out plowing his field this morning on my way to work. The furrows of dark, freshly turned soil were beautiful in the bright morning sun of this promising spring day.


ksmilkmaid said...

Famous?!!? ROFL But, I wonder why there isn't a Deliberate Agrarian interview? Hint, hint. Seems to me the New Yorkers are holding back on a good interview. Rick once he could justify a trip up there if he could get DA to commit to an interview. My how the world could benefit from hearing from our New York Agrarian friends!!!

JFC said...

Milkmaid, I agree. Between Herrick and Scott, I think Rick would have a very fruitful trip going to New York.

It's funny how attitudes change. I would never have expected that 2 of the best agrarian bloggers on the internet are from New York. Kansas, maybe, but not New York.

Live and learn.

JFC said...

We had a good chat about everything from chicken pluckers to dispensational eschatology

I don't expect that Franklin espoused dispensational eschatology to you, did he? Those who have a concern for multi-generational faithful covenant-keeping generally don't see eye-to-eye with dispensationalism.

Faithfulness to Christ and the Christian agrarianism has probably cost Franklin more than any other individual in this nation. Between reading his website, and talking with the Missouri Rev., I have developed quite an appreciation for Franklin.

May the Lord give you the desires of your heart relating to the Grange building!

ksmilkmaid said...

Who is Franklin Sanders?

Herrick Kimball said...

KS & jfc: I have all the Plain Talk interviews and I enjoy them and I recommend that others get them but I don't think I would make a good interview. Rick has asked and I have considered it. But I am a poor conversationalist. My talent is putting my thoughts into words, not talking.

I realized this a couple years ago when I sent Lynn Rossetto Kasper of the radio program, "The Splendid Table," a jar of my homemade garlic powder. Her producer called and we set up a phone interview. After introducing me, she started out with the question: "So, why garlic powder?" My mind went blank. I never expected her to ask that. The interview ended up okay but I was not pleased with it and determined that I would not do that again. I've told this story to Rick. I'm just not an interview kind of guy, unless maybe it's a written interview.

jfc: I did not get the inpression from FS that he was a dispensationalist.

KS: Franklin Sanders is a fellow Christian agrarian from Tennessee and ”The Most Dangerous Man in The Mid South”

JFC said...

But I am a poor conversationalist. My talent is putting my thoughts into words, not talking.

'Tis a wise man that knows his gifts and his limitations. Of course your views of your talents should take into consideration what those who know you best think about them also, but if they concur that you write better than you talk, then perhaps we will have to be satisfied with your blog. And, perhaps, with something in The Gospel Plow, or whatever it is that Rick is putting together.

Thanks for using your writing gifts to help us!

ksmilkmaid said...

Hark! I disagree. You did a fine job on the phone the other night. Perhaps you could have a canned interview. Specifically ask Rick to write down the questions and you in turn write down the answers. I think a plain talk interview would be just that helpful. Many of us do see you as instrumental in this movment. Your name is even popping up on ladies forums. I tell you this because I don't think you have acess to these forums.

Oh...well. I shall go back and wimper elsewhere. BTW you actually sounded like someone who does radio shows. Rich tones to your voice etc. Does that help any? Grasping for straws.

JFC said...

I thought we might get some conflicting information about whether or not you can talk.

Sounds like your self-deprecating comments are not universally received. Consider the Milkmaid's advice!

Christina said...

I going to be in trouble before it is over. I meant to say after you have written the answers down then you can read from your notes from the interview. Chances are you will find the Holy Spirit will help in this case. I believe there is some provedential work of God going on behind these interviews. I asked for a list of questions and was very nervous about what to say and why a strange guy would want to visit our po dunk little farm. Would anyone even buy the interview? Rick was very kind and gave me a sample of what he wanted to visit about. When the interview time came, I don't know what posessed me, I didn't plan a thing, just started talking. After he left I didn't remember much of what we talked about. But, I felt oddly at ease. I have never felt that comfortable in the past speaking. I really believe there is a need for these kind of interviews. Momentum is building. The desire is being placed in the hearts of many to seek rural living.

I just got to thinking maybe a petition signing would work. I sure we could root out some DA fans easily. They are everywhere. I could go to the forums and start there.