By Jamie Cearley, PhD
Jamie Cearley plans to focus her blog posts on the everyday world, "to open eyes to the everyday world, its magnificence, and the many lessons of life that nature presents for our learning – if we would only stop to listen and observe."
She also hopes to share tips for ways to reduce a farmer's workload and to make operations more efficient, easier, less expensive. "I am a formally trained scientist with a focus on biology and genetics. I enjoy 'boiling down' topics of concern or interest in these areas for the rural public, in particular."
Jamie is in the midst of planning a Fall Festival on her farm, Soquili Farm, which includes prepping the barn and homestead, food, decorations, activities, and she says they will be performing as the live musical entertainment. She's going to take a lot of photographs and will write some posts on the "how-to" of putting on a great festival on your farm.
Future projects include installation of an automatic water fountain for the horses; completion of running electric wire to the road for the construction of a gate; and continuing on the landscaping in front of the house as well as their small blueberry patch.
Jamie and her husband, Curt, moved to the country to not only enjoy nature right outside their door but to give them room to be home with their horses. They have also planted a garden, prompted by, Jamie says, "the desire to learn how to grow our own food. It is empowering and fulfilling to eat something you have put so much effort into. There is no more obvious way to see the principles of hard work and reward at plan than in a garden." Currently planted in the garden are herbs, cucumbers, bell peppers, asparagus, tomatoes, yellow squash, zucchini squash and okra, "our typical summer staples."
Soquili Farm is home to Twister, a chestnut Appaloosa gelding, "who is my husband's through and through"; Poncho, Jamie's gruella Appaloosa gelding; four other horses the couple is boarding; and two dogs, Sadie, a large black mutt who came with the farm, and Mosie, a yellow mutt rescued off their road when she was just 8 weeks old. "She loves her new life her on the farm," Jamie says.
Jamie lists her "country skills" as horse care and training, pasture maintenance, farm management, gardening, dog training, cooking, building and various other fix-it skills.
Her definition of a "homesteader" is "a person with a strong desire to have a functional understanding of nature: What we can do for it and what it can do for us, in terms of both our enjoyment and our survival."
And her philosophy of country life? "Country life is the best this world has to offer. It’s good for the mind, body and soul. I could not ask for more."