an artist and farmer who pursues her love
of gardening, photography and fashion
ON A DIFFICULT TRANSITION FROM New york CITY LIFE TO RURAL PENNSYLVANIA:
"When I was 13, my family moved from Brooklyn, NY to rural Pennsylvania. This deeply affected me because of my age, but also because up until this point, living in a city gave me lots of freedom and independence. I could leave the house and hang out with my friends whenever I wanted, like a true inner city kid. When we first moved to the country, there was nothing to do and I had to rely on my parents to take me everywhere. This was really hard at the time, but I look back with gratitude for the shift. In Brooklyn, I was not a great learner or interested in school. I knew my only way out of Pennsylvania was to study and try to go to college, so I immersed myself in schoolwork and athletics. By my senior year of high school, I was one of two students awarded the scholar-athlete title for my class. I attended college with a scholarship and played tennis too."
On the challenges of learning to farm and what that taught her:
"In the first few years of farming, I lived with the people I worked with. This was a real challenge and was very uncomfortable, but it worked for me financially at the time. Learning how to farm was very intense work and it didn't help not being able to get away from co-workers, it added stress. I was in my young twenties during this period and it forced me to understand healthy work-life boundaries and being a better communicator. It was not always easy and I was not always perfect at it, but I have worked hard to refine those skills and it amazes me how transferable those skills are for running my business and working with clients."
"it was not always easy and I was not always perfect at it, but I have worked hard TO REFINE THOSE SKILLS."
On the positive effect of couples therapy:
"My boyfriend and I of 4 years started going to couples therapy this Spring. We hit a roadblock that needed an outside perspective. I go to therapy for myself and wear this as a badge of honor. Couples therapy on the other hand, makes me feel so vulnerable and like a failure. After a few sessions, I realized how great it was for us to have some raw open honesty with each other in a way that I know sitting on our couch by ourselves would not have provided."
on her toughest fall:
"I had my hardest break up in my mid twenties. Relationships have not always been easy for me. I was working 60 hours a week and lost almost 25 pounds. I was eating rice cakes with butter at every meal. I feel a bit trite that one of my hardest falls was because of a guy, but my biggest lesson here was to never let someone have that much power over me again. I was really unhealthy and sick during a time when I should have been very strong. I have learned better boundaries in romantic relationships and that a breakup is not the end of the world."
On her struggle with being brave:
"Yes. I have what I call “brave window” moments. If I do not jump through when the window is open, then I miss my chance."
"I have what I call 'brave window' moments.
If I do not jump through when the window is open, then I miss my chance."
on the conflicts with her faith:
"I grew up in the Christian church and do not fully ascribe to what I was taught. This does not necessarily mean I have lost my faith; just that my relationship with God has changed. I am ashamed that I have never fully had this conversation with my family and rely on not talking about it to be the solution."
on learning to say 'no' for her own SANITY:
"I have recently learned how to say “no” and to take ownership of my decision. I get so overwhelmed when I am asked to do something that I do not want to do. I stress to the point where it’s as if I have already done it and that is a waste of my mental and emotional energy. I have started to step away from the question, objectively decide if it makes sense for me to participate in either my work or personal life, give a direct answer and not think about it again."
"i have recently learned how to say 'no' and TO TAKE ownership of my decision."
her greatest fear:
"I love the work I do so much and it scares me to think of not doing it because of poor decision making with the business."
on not taking life too seriously:
"I have a sense of humor that I think people appreciate because life can get real serious, real fast."
HER QUIRKY story:
"During the summer of 2006, I was living in Harrisburg, PA and The Beach Boys were playing a live concert for the city. I elbowed my way up to the front with a close friend and during the encore we were invited to get on stage. I stood front and center with Mike Love and he handed me the microphone and I sang “She’ll have fun, fun, fun till her daddy takes her T-bird away…” in front of a crowd of a couple thousand people."