Linda in her garden in BeltonI didn’t grow up on a farm in my hometown just south of Kansas City, but I grew up surrounded by them. Many summer weekends were spent on my step-father’s family’s farms in southwest Missouri. Yet, I was drawn to a city life. After many years of living and working in large cities around the world, I found myself disconnected from the natural world. A move to Tulsa in 2006 offered me the opportunity to start fresh and make sure that whatever life I led here would involve plenty of time outside, connected to the natural world.

I found the Living Kitchen in 2007 when I volunteered to join some friends who were going to farm-sit for Lisa and give her a much needed break. Something shifted over that long weekend. I knew I wanted to farm. I helped out at the Living Kitchen any chance I got. It didn’t matter what I did, cleaning out barns, milking goats, harvesting peppers, planting potatoes, every minute I spent on the farm healed something deep inside me.

Linda and BegoniaIn 2009 I moved out to the farm to live. I straddle two worlds, one where I work in an office to make a living and use the skills I’ve developed over the course of my career in ministry and higher education, and another where I care for animals, work in the garden and work with Lisa to provide a unique experience for people from all over Oklahoma and the surrounding states. I love helping people make their way here to enjoy an evening on the farm, becoming reacquainted with the source of their food and connecting with complete strangers at the long table on the back porch of the cabin. Nothing satisfies more than watching people leave after a farm table dinner, relaxed, renewed, full of good food, and engaged with new friends.