Two farms, one mile apart from one another, hold most of my childhood memories. One farm, my Dad's farm on which I lived; the other farm belonged to my grandparents, the farm on which I spent helping my parents with milking and chores. Both farms now belong to other families...I have been back to our farm once, but have not been back to my grandparents' farm...until this visit, almost 23 years later. Above and below, the double 6 milking parlor, where I spent a lot of time helping my Dad milk cows....very little has changed.....
The old hay barn.....lots of work and play occurred in that building.....
This is the photo that I had to work for....this barn is falling down so I had to climb through a hole in the side to get through the barn to the other side to get my picture. This farm had been in our family for over a century when Grandpa sold it in 1987....ironically the same year my mother died. The date "1887" is on the brick on the side of the barn....Grandpa told me that was the year that the barn was built by his great-great-uncle, but it was not the year the farm was established....I think the farm was established about 20 years before the barn was built.
In between the two farms is a cemetery, where my mother is buried. This might be the first picture I've had taken at my mom's grave. It was time.
My dad's farm has changed a lot since the new owners have turned it into a dairy farm....Dad had livestock and pigs when I was growing up, but the dairy operation was at my grandparents' farm. Below is a not very good picture looking out from the edge of the acreage....I used to go out and just stare at the lonely trees in the middle of the field.
Ann-Marie loved the farm and all the animals!
Below is our old house, and the apple tree that my mom loved still producing apples!
And a nice surprise to see that our last farm dog, Buck, was still living at the farm and he remembered us! "Buck" and "dog" were Evan's first words so this dog made an impression on Evan.
Each visit back to Iowa as I get older brings more healing to my life. I really felt as if I could let go of some painful memories this trip by visiting some of the special places I remembered and capturing them on photos. I find as I do this, I am remembering more positive memories than negative, and that is good.