Who We Are

The past few years, the area where I live, Crawford County, Ohio, has seen a wonderful explosion of younger families who are embracing the joys and challenges of living off the land. Because of them, amazing things are happening which have been embraced by our community. Farmer’s markets have been created and on-farm stores have opened. Families dedicated to growing organic produce and naturally raised meats are meeting the public’s needs for locally raised foods. And at the heart of this movement are the women.

Ohio Country Journal is my attempt to share the essence of farm life, focusing on, but not limited to, women. My goal is to bring you into our circle of friendship by inviting you to share your stories and experiences with us. You don’t have to be a full time country woman to benefit from joining us; you just have to be you.

The full-time country women featured in Ohio Country Journal are an inspiration to anyone who dares to follow her dreams, whether it is to live in the country or to bring the country life-style to their urban neighborhoods.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Full-Time Country Woman Workin' the Sugar Shack

This was scheduled to post yesterday. Looks like I need to learn more about
how to schedule posting times.

Freed Eichler in the mid 60's
Jim's aunt Freeda was a full time country woman, back in the day when it was more common to find women who did not work a job other than her farm work.

Freeda was raised on a farm in Morrow County, Ohio. When she married Jim's uncle Lester, her parents gave them a farm to work. Pretty sweet!


A large part of their operation was making maple syrup and sugar. This picture is from a box of slides that we found when we were cleaning out Jim's mother's house after she passed. Freeda is boiling down sap in their sugar house.

Notice the evaporator, and that she is and stirring the syrup. The sugar shack is made of corrugated metal. Not too fancy, but it got the job done!

When our kids were small, we used some of the Eichler's equipment to tap trees and teach the kids where syrup comes from and how it is made. None of us do it now, though...it is a tremendous amount of work and a huge commitment to keep the fires burning under the evaporator and to keep the syrup from burning.

And, with two maple producers near-by, we still get our Pure Maple Fix.


Marcheta *did that, done that

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