One thing leads to the next. Oftentimes, we don't know where we'll end up until we get there. To retrace the steps from whence one came brings understanding to know how it all began. Therefore, I begin at the beginning. Most every summer, Dick and I attend the weekend-long "Old Wadena Rendezvous and Folk Festival" near Staples, Minnesota. Last year, on August 13, 2017, my sister, Rita, and I stopped by a table to make a cornhusk doll and accept the gift of a fire starter made from an egg carton section. It had a business card inserted into the wax that supported a wick.
The owners, Tim and Jen Poland, of the "Leaning Silo Folk & Homestead School" near Swanville, Minnesota shared that they were nearing completion of a building renovation on their farm that would become a classroom with an adjacent commercial kitchen to prepare lunch for workshop participants. In the spring of 2018, the school began offering its first classes.
On April 7, 2018, I attended a workshop titled "How to Grow Your Own Mushrooms." There was a sense of peace mixed with excited anticipation as I drove down the driveway and caught my first glimpse of their homestead. Then. There was the leaning silo. So sweet. And the building that would be my classroom for the next nine hours.
We learned so much from our passionate experts, Ron and Margaret, and took our logs inoculated with mushroom spawn home to tend. I chose to spend the day wearing my father's red flannel shirt in memory of his hard-working life on the farm where I was raised to love and appreciate tending a garden, raising chickens, and foraging in the woods for food and medicinal plants. I have already registered to attend my second class.