Tom & Bev Theobald, Barn-n-Bunk Farm Market

Diary of Bev Theobald- Barn-n-Bunk Farm Market- Week 1- May 2-8, 2011

Monday, May 2, 2011

We have had lots of rain for at least a week.  Our soil here is a gravel base, so water drains off easily, as opposed to a clay soil.  However, we have had so much rain that our fields have become saturated.  There is water covering much of the crops now.  Tom had planted sweet corn on March 20 and again on April 15.  This is his usual routine in order to get a crop ready to harvest by July1st.  Beans, peas, onions, and beets are also planted.  All crops were up and visible before the most of the rain.  We are not sure what will survive.  Farmers are always checking on the weather.  As I was growing up, I thought they were a bit obsessive about the weather.  Now I understand the weather is everything to the farmer… It means you have a crop or perhaps no crop at all.

Our farmhouse has a brick floor.  It was built around 1900.  When the water table in the ground rises, the water just rises through the brick floor.  Water around the well pump means that we have to shut off the electricty.  This water has forced Brian and family to move out of the house last week.  This week Suzi is at a business training in Atlanta, So Brian is wearing many hats—Dad, farm market operator, track coach, and “Mr. Mom”. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

More rain today.  We cannot get into the fields at all.   We do have deliveries today.   Very few customers.   We also have a greenhouse now, with lots of hanging baskets as well as plants for the garden.  Tonight the prediction in for temperatures in the 30’s.  Therefore, our most tender plants must be moved inside the barns so they will not be damaged from the cold.  Usually, Tom can protect our early corn and beans by turning on our irrigation system.  That brings the water to about 55 degrees which will prevent freezing of the crop.  Now, howver, we cannot use the irrigation system, as we already have water covering the crops.  We just take our chances tonight.   

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Some places had heavy frost this morning.   We were fortunate—no signs of frost.  Crops are OK.  We had light rain until noon.  The flooding waters are receding, but still covering some of our corn and beans.  Today, I must go to town for food supplies for our weekly events….This week we have three events to provide buffet food, so I have an extensive list.  Like everyone, I plan ahead to save gas money—one trip will do it.        

Thursday, May 5, 2011

We celebrate some sunshine today.  We have a special motor coach coming today,  This is a group from Auglaize County; their special interest is in historical sites.  They will have lunch in our 1893 Barn and then tour the other barns.   We have many historical farm implements here.  Some are original to this farm and others have been brought here by friends who want them preserved.  One of our most prized pieces is a box bed wagon built in Trenton by an implement company oround 1900.  It was donated to us by a cousin, Harold Richter.  This can be seen in the loft of our Ice Cream Candy Barn.   

Friday, May 6, 2011

We have some major deliveries today,  Troyer Cheese from Holmes County, Ohio, is here early.  We will also get our GFS, major food supplier today.   We are continuing to take reservations for our Sunday Buffet.  This will be the biggest brunch of the year –Mother’s Day.  We can seat a lot of people, but it is critical to spread out the reservations so all can be seated.  At this time, we are running our market with extra help in each barn.  Jobs include register sales, inventory, pricing, answering phones, customer assistance, deli slicing and sandwich prep,  Tom is still hauling in flowers, as Mother’s Day weekend is the biggest event for hanging baskets.  Brian is overseeing the Main Barn until late afternoon when he puts on his track coaching gear.  He is the varsity girls coach at Edgewood High.  At that time, our grandson Casy arrives from school to take over in the Main Barn.  Scott is busy with food prep for 2 more events—a wedding reception and Sunday Brunch.   My job includes assistance in the deli, as needed, and answering phone requests and e-mail inquiries.  I am still completing the accounting work for April–done on the computer.  More rain today.  Tom is watching the fields each day.  Sometimes it is a little depressing.   Today we have set up for a wedding party at 3:00.  I am helping with suggestions for table placement, ceremony and chair placement, lighting,  All must be in  place for the rehearsal at 6:30 p.m.  We will have 100 guests at the wedding and all activities will be done on the main level.  One more hat I wear today is wedding coordinator. 

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Rain showers continue this morning.  Again, no field work.  Today is a very special event in the 1893 Barn—a wedding and reception to begin at 4:30 pm.  Scott is still busy with food prep for today and tomorrow.   Kelly coming in about 1 p.m. to help Scott.  The two of them will manage the wedding buffet for us.        This afternoon only very light sprinkling of rain.  No problem for the wedding.  Bridesmaids and bride come down the north staircase, music provided by relatives using a keyboard and flute.  Beautiful.  All goes well.  Party over by 7:30.  Now our clean up starts. (Tom and I, Scott and Kelly)  We also set up tables for the group reservations for Mother’s Day.  We are all headed home by 9:30 p.m.

Sunday, May 8, 2011 Mother’s Day     

We had 1/2 inch of rain overnight.  Just cloudy this morning.  Parking lots have some puddles.  Scott is our son-in-law and major manager of the Sunday buffets.  He starts today at 8 a.m. and works with Josh, an Edgewood student who has helped in the buffet since we started five years ago.  We will have extra help today to manage a big buffet—14 total workers plus Scott, Kelly, and myself.  We are ready to open at 10:30 am., starting with a group of 32.  They had reservations and we take them to the loft.  At the end of the day, no one was turned away and we had only positive comments about the food and service.   It turned out to be our biggest buffet to date with 512 guests today.  We closed the doors about 3:15 p.m. and started the clean up after all workers had a break and a big dinner on the house.  We were all ready to head home about 5:30.       

Today we gave out coupons for specials on ice cream and flowers for Moms.   We wanted the guests to take a walk over to the other barns to see what else Barn-n-Bunk has to offer.  Brian lended a hand in dipping ice cream (free for Moms), along with three others working in the Ice Cream Barn.  Two more extra workers helped in the Main Barn—-There were flower sales, mulch to load, gifts for Mom, lots of questions to answer.  Tom is overseeing all things and sometimes helping bring more ice, etc. to the Buffet kitchen.   He also is our major PR person, talking to lots of friends and frequent customers.       

For me on Mother’s Day, I had to work, but it was fun working with family—-all three children and spouses were here today (three working with me and Tom) and five of our seven grandchildren were also here working with us.  Lots of the other workers are also like family and we are so proud of ALL of them.







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