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  • Writer's pictureCheri Marks

You're never too old!

I've written before about my childhood growing up in a big city, but, always wanting to live on a farm with animals. Although I was born in Oklahoma, I grew up in the Bay Area of California. Every summer and some Christmas vacations we spent time between my mother's parents who lived in Duncan, and my dad's parents who lived in the little community of Criner, Oklahoma. I enjoyed time at both grandparents homes. Duncan was a small quaint town, where everyone knew each other and my grandparents would take my brother and I fishing. My grandparents would let us keep the fish we caught in a big metal tub, and would set them free in a local creek before we left to go home. Both grandparents grew up on farms, so they always had a large vegetable garden. It was always meticulously kept, and thrived. As a kid, I wasn't much interested in vegetable gardening, but, for some reason, I always enjoyed looking and walking through my grandparents gardens. Our time spent on my paternal grandparents was the same and different. The same would be, the laughter and love of my grandparents, the many meals shared (both of my grandmother's were fantastic cooks) and neighbors and family that would come to visit. But Criner was in the country, away from everything the city had to offer. At "the farm" as it was referred to by my family, we could wander around through the pastures, climb the hay bales in the barn, visit the various animals my grandpa raised, and I was allowed to walk the mile up the road to visit the little 1 room schoolhouse, the Criner schoolhouse my dad attended as a boy. For some reason I was fascinated with that schoolhouse and would always look forward to my walks to it. These were wonderful days of my childhood that I've cherished all my life.

There came a time in my life where I dreamed of my own farm. A farm in which animals that needed homes could live and thrive and family and friends could visit and enjoy the life I loved as a kid. A place where people of all ages could enjoy teaching life skills like gardening or fence building, and people of all ages could learn those same skills. About 4 years ago, at our Sunday family dinner, I said to my dad "let's buy a farm together! Dad you can garden and be out in the country, but we will all be there to share the work!" He said "yes", my son-in-law said "yes", but my mom and daughter both said "no". Well, I thought that was that. I wasn't married to Ed at that time, and I wasn't so sure I could make my dream of having my own farm, come to life by myself. I prayed about it and left it in God's hands. Then life went on.

It was just 2 short years later that a phone call would change my life. A beautiful farm in Logan County, Oklahoma was going to be sold. We weren't sure how it would all work out, but, it did and here we are almost 2 years later, living on the farm I dreamed of for so long! When I dreamed this dream I was in my mid 40's, this year, I will be 60! You're never too old to live your dream, unless you think yourself old! My grandpa was farming full time at 72 years old, when he died. My dad is 82. years old and still pastors a church full time, my mother will be 82 in a couple of months and is the church pianist and has been for over 30 years. When you love what you do, age doesn't matter. I honestly didn't think I would get the opportunity to finally have a farm, have horses (that I always wanted) along with multiple dogs and cats, learn to grow food, raise chickens and live the simple life I remember from a time that is now long past, but the memories are oh so vivid!

I'm learning new things at this good age and it's challenging, sometimes frustrating, but at the end of the day ( I know that's so cliche, but it works here), I love this country simple life we're living. I love that my grandkids love to be at the farm, I love that our family and friends love to visit and I love that most of our animals who were once unwanted have a place to belong.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post! We have a Cole's Ranch page on Facebook where we post pictures of happenings around our farm. We would love to see you there too!

Dreams are for the "seasoned" too!


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