Happy Holidays

This Christmas Season is a great time for many to run frantically around in preparation for this time of giving, and for some it may be a rather difficult time for personal reasons. I have been fortunate in my life to have been able to spend the holiday with family and friends in the spirit of love and giving, and I always reflect on the holiday with pleasant memories.

As I sit here writing this post, I am thinking about how Around The Bend Farms could one day be the type of organization that welcomes families near and far to participate in the spirit of joining together in unity, enriching each others' lives and sharing experiences. I am wondering about how we might work together to spread the message of our common desire to bring people together as we forge ahead through the challenges we face in our country and the world at large. A questions that comes to mind is, "What does peaceful community partnership look like to people?" I guess, more importantly the question I should consider is, "What does peace look like to me?" I have seen enough unrest and instability to know what peace does not look like, and I often wonder if it is a reality that can materialize in our world forever. These are important questions that I should consider as I work with others to develop the design & organizational structure of Around The Bend Farms, Inc., not just because it's just a good paradigm, but because I have seen a possible way to establish a balanced system that reflects the peace that I experience daily.

I hope that you all have a very peaceful Christmas and a Happy New Year!

-Ben

Onward and Upward

Today is a great day. We have completed what will be the Grant/Investor Proposal that will be used to go after the seed money - the initial funding that will help us build the first stage of the community farm campus. Coupled with community donations, this money will be used to hire the architect to design the campus, and the CEO will be researching permaculture as the design for preserving the land encompassing the farm unfolds. As the funding continues to come in & be put to use, we will be updating the public along the way with the developments that unfold. Thank you so much to our first donors (contributors), Sheryl and Mel. This represents the beginning of the achievement of another milestone - to build membership within the organization so that we may work together to make Around The Bend Farms, Inc even better with each passing day.

-Ben

We just began our fundraising campaign

I am so excited about how Around The Bend Farms, Inc is coming together. What began as a dream and a vision is actually happening more and more! We just began our first fundraising campaign, and I am so nervous and excited simultaneously. I am also very optimistic in terms of how this will all work out for the benefit of the community. I thank everyone who believes in what we are doing, and I am so pumped to see what happens next!

-Ben

The Business Side...

Being a business-minded person is quite an unnatural state for me. I have been learning a lot about focusing on filing important documents & keeping track of fiscal reporting lately. I had to get a local CPA to help me out with the tax stuff, and she has been extremely helpful in smoothing out that portion of the business management. Each day is an opportunity for me to see what I need to learn, ask questions, take notes, and develop these new skills that I never knew I had.

Having a business-oriented mind requires envisioning the direction I want to go, finding out the most resourceful and efficient way to go about it, and if I start to run out of steam, then I need to remember to rest, unplug from the process and come back to it later. It's actually quite fun really, and I get to see how the business-building process requires being able to maximize connections and reaching out to seasoned business-driven veterans to glean as much information as I can about next steps in moving forward. I have been using the internet like crazy, as it has become a valuable and extremely helpful resource. Yay for the internet!

-Ben

The Vision for Around The Bend Farms Inc is beginning to materialize

I was contemplating the structural design and specifications associated with Around The Bend Farms, Inc, and I instantly became overwhelmed. I spoke to Pat (our Executive Board Director) on the phone and told him that I needed to speak to an architect who could help me design the farm. Pat was so helpful, not only suggesting what I should do, but also in helping me to see the scope of what the business side of it entails. I had some false starts in terms of finding a non-corporate-minded architect who was open & willing to believe in my vision; someone who also desires to change the current agricultural paradigm here in Oregon. I finally spoke to a local architect named Christian, and we absolutely resonated on the particular sustainable designs that interest us. You can view the company website at http://gladudesign.com/

Since the inception of my dream, I am seeing more and more that I need to connect with competent, open-minded visionaries who are willing to move toward and usher in a new paradigm consistent with an optimized & sustainable system. Now that I have spoken to a designer who appears to sincerely concur with my vision, I have begun to see some of what's going to be involved in the ongoing planning process. Bottom line...there is a ton of work to do and this is going to be something quite challenging, but the results will be absolutely worth the investment.

-Ben