Saturday, September 17, 2011
Blueberry Homesteading Book
The Blueberry Years by Jim Minick
I got this book in the mail from my sister. Since we've been sick I've had time to devour it. A "delicious" read it said in one review. Jim has a knack for describing people, human nature and blueberries! Everyone has a dream and Jim and Sarah's is to support themselves on a homestead of blueberries. How hard can that be they question that question? (Since his father grew some bushes it should be in his genes. No?) Blueberries that are not yet planted, nor the bull pines cleared, but they have the land and the dream. Easy enough they think. Jim takes you with him and his wife on this journey of labor and love and mother earth. Not any journey but an certified organic farmer's journey who invites strangers to his farm to "u pick" blueberries right along with them.
You soon realize he has a love affair with blueberries. I wonder how many blueberry bushes have been sold by nurseries because of Jim's apt description of their gorgeous existence.
When you toil over the land and plant the bushes you become protective of it. Jim also becomes an analyst of people, relationships, religion, money, dreams, neighbors, and the ever productive blueberry...all of the clever evaluations come from keeping the hands busy and the mind turns things over and over until every visible side is exposed. You laugh. You worry. And like a good friend he shares his feelings with you whether they are right or wrong at the time. Unlike myself he has learned when to pause and not answer. If you are not an organic food believer you will be.
After I read the last page I wanted to ring them up and invite them over for dinner. To think he used to teach high school English in Maryland. Jim is a gifted writer and poet. This book is not just for "do it yourself-ers" or homesteaders, it's a book about life and relationships that come from working toward a dream.
As a bonus he has added blueberry recipes at the end! I highly recommend it.