Who We Are

      

   

John & Stephanie Marnell


John was born here in Jefferson County and has lived his whole life in Evans Mills.  He grew up on a working hobby farm his parents owned, right where we are now.  The barn burned 20 some years ago and the pastures have gone fallow and if you asked him 10 years ago what he would be doing now he never thought he'd be building up the farmstead from the ground up.  He currently works full time for the State of New York. 


On the otherhand, I grew up in the city and subburbs of Buffalo, joined the Army in 1989 and ended my service -- on the active side in 1994. Since then I have lived in Texas and Georgia and finally settled here in Evans Mills. No, never, ever would I have thought I'd be a farmer.  Not in my wildest dreams.  I currently work full time for the Department of the Army as a civilian.   


How it all began....a comedy.


Long , long ago in a galaxy far away….no, wrong story. Ummm, once upon a time there were three bears….nope, nope, nope not that one either.


Wait, here it is. So, my bodybuilding fitness gurette or whatever it is you call a girl guru..Giru? stepdaughter. ;-) I don’t know, but I’m going with Giru. I kind of like it. She was eating upwards to a half a dozen eggs every day. It’s that high protein low fat thing, you know? Girlfriend got ripped! I hate her. Not really. Just kidding. Oh to be young again, sigh sad face.


It was actually fairly impressive to see her so dedicated and totally transform, and it spawned the notion that going to the local big box store for a dozen eggs every other day was growing old. There I was, standing in front of the 30 different kinds of eggs wondering what all the packaging meant...vegetarian, cage free, free range, brown, white, super jumbo, yada, yada and right then and there I vowed then never to return to that store that everyone loves to hate but can't seem to live without for eggs and I promptly proceeded next to wellllllll, the deli, the pharmacy, sporting goods, pet supplies, the garden shop, back to the pharmacy, boys clothing, hardware, paint, and lastly to car care. That store is ridiculous like that. Where else can you go for eggs, but pick up a half pound of provolone, generic advil, a tip-up, sack of dog food, a flat of tomato plants, toothpaste, boxer briefs, a box of screws, a can of enamel, an oil change and tire rotation? Okay, so then I went to Tractor Supply because THEY HAD CHICKENS!


Alleluia!


I mean at least to me that’s what the idea sounded like when it hit. I have fifty acres, my husband is pretty handy, he’ll build me a coop so the pretty little chickens will be Bob Ross happy in their happy little home, with their happy little nests making happy little eggs every happy little morning. Frickin’ brilliant!!!! I digress.


There I was, Tractor Supply, the faint waft of sawdust, chicken feed and heat lamps rapidly taking over my better judgment. Immediately I was transformed into a 5 year old girl at the sight: baby chickens!  Shyly I asked the man at the counter, “can I holdy one, pwease?” I pwomise I will be vewy careful wif da baby bock bock.”  “Awe, honey,” he replied, “of course! Just look at them big baby blues,” as he handed me a little yellow ball of peeping fuzzy adorableness. “I will kiss him and squeeze him and hug him and pet him and love him and I will call him George.”


“Ummm management, I think we maaaaay have a little situation on aisle 9.”


Don’t judge. I snapped. I own it. I’m not ashamed.


The upside to being fourty-si.., well, um, not 5 years old is, well, lets just say I have plastic. Good plastic! Oh if that plastic could only talk. It most likely would cry actually. Probably best that it can’t, and that I am the family bookkeeper too, because that day I went chicken stupid. I bought two of everything chicken related I could find. Two Leghorns, two Wyondettes, two Plymouth Rocks, two Rhode Island Reds, two feeders, fences, wires, waterers, warmers, feed, food, mash, shells, sawdust, bells, bedding, a basketball…I still don’t know why… Chickens for Dummies and Dummies for Chickens. It was like Noah’s Ark, but with chickens and stuff. Ugh, and then there was this harness thing for walking a chicken. I just had to have it! Had to!  I’m still not sure if I was escorted out because no one had ever spent that much money in Tractor Supply on chickens before, or I just broke the staff. When I left, they were all standing around swearing or maybe praying, I’m not sure how to quantify so many, praises in Jesus's name! It was weird. My picture is on the wall for employee of the month. Mind you, I don’t even work there. The manager calls me sir. I’m very obviously a ma’am. He said it was a respect thing, like the Godfather. He handed me cannoli’s, on this the day of my daughter’s wedding. On the way out, he made me an offer I couldn’t refuse.


“Honey, I’m home!”


He knew the tone and was rightfully nervous; perhaps even scared. The poor dear took it right on the chin, “You did what?”


“I got a couple things.” I said shyly...


“Did you remember eggs?” he asked.


“welllllllllll, kinda.”


And we’ve been, “Just Wingin’ It” ever since.


This is an honest to goodness True Story!


HOW DID WE GET OUR FARM NAME?



We had a facebook contest between friends and family of course! The one with the most votes won, which was my cousin Jason, down in Alabama, and for some reason, I think it suits us perfectly!

HOW DID WE GET OUR LOGO?



A very greatful customer, and now friend, Nicole, who's kids just love our farm has a mom that is in publishing, she designed our logo as a gift and we absolutely love it. ♥