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Aidan's Birthday

Aidan turns 19 today!

In his natural habitat - our farm.

Actually he did at 5:06 am.

Laying in bed this morning - the only one awake at 5:06 am, similar to that early morning hours all those years ago - I remembered his birth and our lives back then.

My pregnancy was filled with excited anticipation for our second child but was also a time of worry and anxiety.

Our banker of several years told us our struggling farm wasn't worth the bother because we weren't paying our high interest mortgage down fast enough.

He said they didn't want our loan anymore, and we needed to find someone else to take it, or the farm would be sold on the county steps in ninety days.

After the initial shock of the unexpected news, Bill and I got busy trying to find another bank that might help out a couple of young, hard working, yet struggling, farmers but were turned down again and again.

We thought we'd found a solution when a former farmer turned loan officer went to bat for us with his bank board. But just as the loan was to be approved, he took a different job, and it all fell through.

Back to square one and hearing more, "Sorry, we'd like to help, but small farms are just too risky so we can't."

The day we received the notice with the date they'd be auctioning off the farm was one of our lowest. Here we were with one cute little guy and another in my swollen belly about to be homeless.

Liam & Bill in front of our house, 2003

We tried hard not to blame each other or become immobilized by stress and depression, but we didn't know what to do.

Thank goodness Bill decided to try once again.

He stopped in at a very small local bank in Boscobel and talked to their one and only loan officer/manager.

Dick looked everything over, said we needed to be given a fair shake, and all but promised

he'd take the loan which he ended up doing just days later.

It felt like a miracle.

We had a home for our growing family and could continue farming.

At 2 days old he was, most likely, already contemplating the importance of microorganisms in the soil!

This week, contemplating it all from the vantage point nineteen years gives, it hit me how serendipitous those events were given that they happened just before Aidan's birth.

Aidan, who spends so much time out in our fields and pastures that the neighbors, only half-joking, ask

if we won't let him in the house!

Aidan, who lives and breathes taking care of the animals, soil, and growing environment so that we all benefit from eating the nutritious food produced here.

Aidan, who thinks family movie night means we should make a big batch of organic popcorn and watch the latest video he found on regenerative ag or the benefits of planting a diverse number of plant families in the same cover crop to attract a wider variety of microbiological life in the soil.

On a round bale.

Back then -- before I'd met him, fighting to find a way to stay here at 32727 Byrds Creek Valley Dr., -- I had no idea what he'd would look like, what his personality or his interests would be much less,

if he'd even like growing up on a farm.

I certainly didn't know how how integral he'd become to this place

that he almost never knew!

Today I'm grateful for his drive, his energy, his goofy smile, his loyalty, his support, and his love, but mostly

I just appreciate

how lucky I am to know him.

Silly back then.

And still silly now.

Happy Birthday Aidan!

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