The season is winding down, and autumn is coming on strong! Mother Nature is finally giving us some seasonable weather, and the cool crops are loving it. The bok choi, broccoli, kale, spinach, and turnips are beautiful. The so-called “hot crops” on the other hand, are done for the season. Say goodbye to the peppers and eggplants when you are at the farm, and whisper a thank you to the tomatoes, which gave us so many good weeks of delicious enjoyment this year.

We have been giving out fall crops. You’ve already seen winter squash and potatoes. Everyone will get a bunch of popcorn at their next pick up. Did you know that you can put an entire ear of popcorn into a paper bag and pop it in the microwave? It will pop right off the cob! Make sure you test it before popping all of it: Put a few kernels in the microwave or popping pan, and see if they pop. If not, hang the popcorn in a cool, dry place for a while longer before popping.

The sweet potatoes in your share will also need to cure a bit longer before you eat them. Keep them on the counter or in a dark, dry pantry cabinet for another week or two before consuming. This will make them sweeter.

Along with the excitement of autumn and the thankfulness that accompanies the harvest, I have some bittersweet news to share with all of you. I am moving to Vermont this winter and will not be returning to the farm next season. I say it is bittersweet because I have always wanted to return to Vermont. I lived there for four years, and I have always wanted to call it home. At the same time, however, I love this farm community and hate to leave the strong bonds I have here. Stearns is a unique place in that many people are involved in the love of farming. I think of it as a collage: each individual here offers their unique presence—their humanity—which makes the farm the rich, dynamic, changing entity it is.

There are many people to thank, as well,  for their concrete contributions to our farm’s success. I am so grateful to have worked with Kenneth and Seth, two amazing humans who made it all happen. Their farming skills, intelligence, motivation, dedication, and maybe especially, their ability to make me laugh on a moment to moment basis, are blessings I will never forget.

The three of us worked with a (hard)core group of regulars this year, without whom we really could not have done it. I mean it. This group includes volunteers and work for shares. Thank you all, from myself, Kenneth, and Seth:

Sara Abramovitz, James Apostol, Susan Arayas, Shane Ayotte,  Craig Barlow, Frann Bennett, Emily Callahan, Jody Comins, Nancy Conklin-Stone, Carrie Deblois-Mello, Margaret Estes, Mike Giudice, Scott Grebb, Linda Huet, Debka Janek, Andrea Kelsey, Nina Kornstein, Al Kutenplon, Salvatore Lampis, Rick Lawrence, Leslea Linebarger, Laura Lutz, Chris Ludwig, Michelle Matties, Tim McCauley, Cathy Moynihan, Mark Piercey, Trish Reske, Jared Rodericks, Tali Rozenman, Kevin Smith, Jessie Steinberg, Christine Terramane, Joe Trainor, Elana Varon, Aaron Wells, Andrew Whitaker, Arlete Wilson, Yin Xian, Tom Yelton, and Christine Zate

Thank you also, our Board of Directors:  James Apostol, Jill Boyd, Nick Clayton, Nancy Conklin-Stone, Peter Doherty, Bela Gorman,Lisa Kamer, and Nomi Sofer,

I hope everyone enjoys the remaining weeks of the summer CSA season. Walk around the farm—it is a beautiful time of year. Take in the cold air, the colors, and the turning of the wheel of the earth. We are edging towards the dark time of the year. Before we know it, we will be turning the clocks back. It does not have to be a bad time of year, though. I welcome the darkness of November and December. It is a time of reflection and renewal. When the light returns on December 21, on the winter solstice, the earth and all of us will look towards a new season of life.

See you at the farm!