Who We Are…
Hello, and welcome to Once Upon A Farm. First off, I’d like to thank you for taking the time to visit our site. We are the Adetoro family and we live on a small “farm” in Baltimore City, Maryland. Yes, that’s right! We live in the city and this is one of the things that makes our farm so special. With a minimal amount of space and a huge amount of love, vision and determination (and the Grace of God!), we’re beginning to turn this small piece of property into a wonderful homestead that continues to grow as we do. We are enjoying every minute of it and are excited to be able to share our journey with you. We are by no means experts in farming or homesteading, but instead hope to be shepherds of a way of life that has somehow been forgotten in our quest for modernity. To live simply these days has become so difficult, and our farm was born out of our desire to get back to that beautiful simplicity that we believe is an intrinsic part of who we are.
Why A Farm…?
Before we moved to this house in the city, we stayed with family in the suburbs. We have always known that we wanted to live simply, have some sense of self sustainability, and eat healthy. But without owning your own land these tasks can seem quite daunting. Because I wanted my family to eat organic (or as many whole foods as possible), I would find myself in many health food store aisles searching diligently for anything affordable and that would suffice my then family of six. I would leave the store with a couple of grocery bags with very little actual food in them, yet had paid over $100 usually. This wasn’t going to work! There had to be a way to not poison myself and my family with carcinogens, toxins, herbicides, pesticides, and GMOs without going broke. We knew that the only way to successfully do this on one income was to do it ourselves. This was the first thing we began looking into when we moved to Baltimore City and began a life on our own little piece of property. We were determined to find a way to live sustainably, still have enough income to survive, and enjoy life and all of it’s complexities…simply. Although this quest is ongoing, we’ve gotten off to a delightful start!
What We Do Here…
Before we could even entertain the idea of having animals here in the city, we had to make sure our ordinances allowed such a thing. Although we were originally thinking about growing our own produce and having a cat or two, we just happened to be in a city that allowed us to keep farm animals. When we first moved here, the law allowed only five chickens and nothing else. But hey, that was far more that what we imagined we could own and we jumped at the opportunity to own a few hens. As time went on, the ordinances changed, and now we are allowed ten chickens (there’s nothing like farm fresh eggs), and…..GOATS!!! What more could a homesteader ask for (well okay… bees, a cow, ducks, a horse, a alpaca or llama, and a mule would be nice), but this was a great start. It was an awesome chance for us to really get our hands dirty and start building the homestead we’d dreamt of.
Now we have Nigerian dwarf goats, a Lamancha/Nubian cross and a Mini-Lamancha, ten chickens and two cats. So you know what that means…farm fresh eggs and loads of raw milk for butter, cheese, ice cream, caramel, yogurt, and the list goes on. We’ve even raised our own Tilapia and greens with an indoor aquaponics system. Our small urban farm is on its way to becoming a real source of food and possible income for our family. We now make soap, cremes, salves, butters and balms with that wonderfully rich goats milk. And I must admit, they are quite magnificent and it is definitely a labor of love!
So What’s Next…
In the near future we hope to bring you a line of bath and body products (and a few sweet confections) that will tantalize your senses and captivate your imagination and take you to a place where living simply is anything but simple. Everything to be sold is handmade, hand poured, hand crafted and made in small batches to insure quality. We strongly believe that the external has an effect on the internal and vice versa, so we should nourish our bodies inside and out to achieve a sense of harmony and health. Thus, each and every product we make with all natural ingredients which means no chemical colorants, fragrances, or additives. Our natural handmade soaps and other body products, unlike soaps found on our store’s shelves, don’t contain chemicals, dyes, alcohol, harsh detergents and petroleums (I know….ewwww). We use only pure vegetable oils, essential oils and natural colorants that are plant based. All ingredients used to produce our soaps and other skin care products are known to be gentle on the skin and made to cleanse as well as moisturize and heal. We’re hoping that you will enjoy these products as much as we do and that we are able to bring a piece of our small farm to your home!
You Made It!
If you’ve read this far….quite frankly you’re awesome. I hope it means that you’ve found something worth following and becoming a part of. We appreciate you taking the time out of your busy day to spend a few moments with us (especially as we are learning and growing ourselves).
Living on a small farm in the city may have it’s difficulties and humbling moments, but it has been one of the best experiences we’ve had as a family and continues to prove itself well worth all the effort. I will be continually updating this site between homeschooling, cooking for, cleaning up after, and catering to my children and lovingly caring for our animals many needs (can you hear the violin?) and take you with us as we traverse this bridge from being consumers to crafters, shoppers to shepherds, compartmentalized to completely wholistic. We hope you enjoy the ride!