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The Store

Deb and I are taking an interesting step in the care and feeding of our Haute Goat habit.

Yesterday afternoon we spent a couple of hours looking for and actually buying paint. After a little thought and a little planning and a lot of crossed fingers, paws, and hooves we are embarking on our FarmGateStore fantasy featuring the Haute Goat products we’ve developed with our incredible artisan makers and our Bashert Farm produce that Debbie, Dan, Jimmy and I grow and some prepared foods that Deb and I make.

So I spent last night daydreaming – not sleeping much lately – about the stories my father used to tell our family about his childhood in a shtetl town in the western part of Lithuania, Gordz in Yiddish, Gargzdai in Lithuanian, where his mother Sheine, built and operated a notions store in their living room – although they didn’t call it a living room – it was their front room. She sold needles, pins, thread, some fabric, buttons – lots of buttons, my father would say – gold ones, ones with stones, and ones she would cover with leftover scraps of fabric. When customers bought, she would let him write the numbers on a paper bag totaling the sale to those customers who had the patience to wait for a four year old writing numbers and totaling them. But they did, and he did, usually without a mistake. That was how he learned, by doing. His brother William was the smart one, and the one whose education extended beyond grade 6.

My dad found work amongst the family and their friends until he immigrated to the US when he was 14. What his mother taught him as a child were lessons well learned because in the US he and my mother eventually built and operated eight stores in Ohio.

So building this FarmGateStore in our dining room – our front room actually, means a lot to me – it’s like echo. It helps me visit memories I had misplaced amongst the accumulation of my experiences while making a living and living and growing children while I grew. But it’s time to stop daydreaming and check the garlic. It should be ready in a week or two, in time for the store opening - August 3, during our Open Farm.

-Shain