Coffee Date

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If you and I were to go on a coffee date, I’d definitely have to order an iced something, because holy cow, it is HOT here. Like, middle-of-August kind of hot.

Can we please sit inside in the sweet, glorious air conditioning? I mean, I love the outdoors as much as the next gal, but it’s so hot, the chickens are laying hard-boiled eggs (well, not really—that’d be kinda awesome though and really convenient).

Because I already brought it up, you’d probably ask me about the chickens. And I’d start gushing about my feathered friends. Oh gosh, do I love them so! We had them literally cooped up in their house for the past three weeks to help teach them where home is, but this past week, we’ve been letting them free range, and let me tell you, everything feels right in the world with a whole flock of chickens running around at your feet.

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I’d tell you that we understand that free-ranging isn’t without risk, but we’ve done our best to provide lots of protection for our girls (and guy), and know in our heart-of-hearts that giving them the freedom to roam around the Plow and live their chicken-y lives is the right choice for us and them—at least until something changes. Seeing those ladies and gent run around and scratch and squawk and chase each other and fly and cluck and eat bugs and weeds makes my heart so happy.

I’d ask you if you ever thought about getting chickens, and you’d tell me you’d love to someday! I’d try to restrain myself from vomiting all over you with excited chicken talk—I know it can be overwhelming. Instead, I’d just tell you that you can ask me questions any time, and I’d love to help get you set up whenever you decide the time is right. I’d leave the subject by telling you chickens are amazing, we love them, and we don’t even have eggs yet!

Moving onto other homestead-y type ventures, I’d ask you how your garden is going this year. Remember when we went and picked out some plants for you to grow earlier in the Spring (while sipping on coffee and chatting about our kids, of course)? That was such a fun day!

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You’d tell me that your tomatoes were doing well, but their leaves are looking a little purple. I’d tell you that was a phosphorus deficiency, and you could pick up some organic bone meal from the store, and it’ll fix that right up for you. Ain’t no thang. Actually, I’d tell you that if you just want to stop by later, I can give you a cup or two—that’s about all you’ll need for your beds. Then I’d feel seven different kinds of happy that I could help you out.

You’d then ask how our garden is going, and I’d tell you that I haven’t been this excited about a gardening season ever. I’d tell you it is going so well (and then knock on the wooden table). We’re doing a great job of keeping the weeds in check, keeping our plants organically fertilized, and really nurturing our babies.

I’d tell you that we’re reaching the end of all of our Spring crops—I just pulled out our pea plants yesterday. And our summer crops are making their way to producing. Amazingly, we picked our first tomato last week! We nabbed a few “cheater” tomato plants from our local vocational school that were already huge, just to get some early tomatoes. It was deeeeelicious!

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The produce talk would remind me that I brought you a gift! I’ve already started my summer canning, so I brought you a jar of strawberry salsa and a jar of strawberry black pepper jam (I also threw in some kale and lettuce in the bag—we’re kinda drowning in greens over here). I’d then warn you that the strawberry salsa is crazy hot. Crazy delicious, but really, really spicy. I did a huge batch and threw in two jalapeños, which normally wouldn’t be that bad, but apparently I got the hottest jalapeños on the planet. You like spicy food, right? I hope so.

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My gift would remind you that you had a question to ask me—what’s Juniper want for her birthday? I’d tell you that all that beautiful little girl wants is her friends and family at her birthday party in a few weeks. No gifts necessary! You’d then insist, because you’re sweet like that, and I’d begrudgingly tell you that we’d love to add to her library—so a new or used book would be great.

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Speaking of the party, you’re coming right? I hope you are. It’s going to be so much fun. I can’t wait to celebrate my baby girl with all of her friends and family! You’d ask me how planning was going, and I’d tell you amazingly! There are a lot of Pinterest-y first birthday parties out there, and I’d tell you that Juniper’s ain’t going to be one of them. We’re going to have good food, good beer, good company, and that’s about it (oh, and balloons—I love balloons!). We’re keeping it pretty low-key.

And yes, I did just brush right past the fact that Juniper is going to be one year old in exactly nine days. I just. I can’t even. I don’t even. I just. So much emotion. I can’t talk about it. I love her so much. And this has been the most wonderful year of my life. Don’t get me started, k? Unless you want me to make a scene in the middle of this coffee shop?

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You kindly change the subject and instead ask me how work is going. I admit that it’s been a rough road over the past few months. I love my job, and am so happy to be doing what I’m doing, but it’s very hard to put your all into doing something and then “release” it to the internet for commentary.

I’ve always been open to constructive criticism, but sometimes, people are just plain mean. And it makes me sad. I try not to be the sensitive girl I am, but my skin has never been thick (and honestly, I kinda love that about myself), so I’d be lying if I said it didn’t hurt. I hope to take this experience and use it to teach Juniper how she can be kind-hearted and compassionate in her honesty, and that sensitivity is a wonderful gift if you learn to control it.

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I then nervously laugh and tell you that was probably more than you were looking for, wasn’t it? Holy insecurities, Batman. Let’s talk about your career. Last time we talked, you were starting your own business. How’s that going? I’m sure amazingly well, because you are savvy, talented, and creative. I’d love to go in business with you some day. Next time, we should brainstorm some business ideas, because I think you and I would make one heck of a team.

Oops. I did it again. I took up our entire coffee date talking about myself. I’m pretty much a terrible friend. Next time! Next time, I promise is going to be 100% about you. I’ll even buy the coffee to make up for my self-centeredness. But for now, lots of love, hugs, peace, and sunshine to you and your family. xoxo!

Cassie is the founder and CEO of Wholefully. She's a home cook and wellness junkie with a love of all things healthy living. She lives on a small hobby farm in Southern Indiana with her husband, daughter, two dogs, two cats, and 15 chickens.

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26 Responses
  1. Andrea

    Cassie I have been a blog follower for a handful of years and I follow you on Instagram (I’m broncobetsy over there). I have to say you have hit your sweet spot in life. Motherhood and mini farming suit you so well. You seem content and happy where you are. I know every day isn’t perfect and we only get to see mostly the good stuff but I think you’ve found your place in life. (And I still wish you were my neighbor, I’m getting my chickens today and. We’d advice on my pepper plants 😉

  2. Hi!

    I’m new to your blog – I discovered you about a week ago while spending a couple of days in bed with a bug I caught from my little 8 month old! I got hooked catching up on past posts for hours!

    I’d love to be on this coffee date! I seem to have a similar life to yourself only I’m in the UK! I work as a freelance childrens wear designer and moved out of London a few years back to start a smallholding in the countryside! I spend loads of time outside gardening, looking after our animals, harvesting AND looking after Alfred our 8 month old son!

    I just wanted to say I love your blog and keep up the great work! We all receive criticism sometimes and seem to dwell on that more than more positive things sometimes – human nature I guess – something I’m bad at doing too!

    Keep up the great posts! Your new follower from th UK! Emily x

  3. Sarah

    FYI, I LOVE your Coffee Date posts. I say, “Hooray!” out loud every time I see you have a new one. Same with your Day In The Life posts!

  4. Ashley

    I love coffee date posts! And um, all your posts 🙂

    Juniper is so dang cute I cannot stand it. And I am not one to gush over a not-cute baby just to gush. I save my gushing for the cutest kids and oh em gee she is just so sweet and adorable! Happy early birthday, sweet girl!

  5. I miss my babe being only 1 yr old, she’s 8 now. but still love her as much as ever and so proud of who she is becoming. you will love the later years just as much as the young ones. and good for you on the low key parties. I’ve always gona that route too. Cute and fun, but never extravagant.

    And as always, love your homestead updates. Even though I have a small garden and land, I could be outside for ever just piddling around in the yard and garden.

    And I agree that the negative comments would be hard but there’s far more of us that love you, love what you do and are always happy to see a new post from you!

    Happy Friday! 🙂

  6. Erika

    Believe it or not, I AM starting my own business right now. Thanks for the encouragement! 😀

    So glad to see things are well with you. Your daughter and husband are adorable as usual and I’m so glad the farm is prospering. Happy Summer!

  7. Jenny

    Juniper looks SO MUCH like her dad. Whoa. So so cute.

    I’m sorry you’ve gotten some unpleasant comments. But I love (and frequently recommend) this blog!

  8. Mandy

    This is such a cute idea for a post 🙂 I’ve been following your blog since finding it on pinterest (of course) last fall. I also live in IN and love gardening, preserving food, and my babies! Anyway- just wanted to say thanks for sharing your life and passion with the “general public”, as emotionally risky as that can be.

  9. I love coffee dates! I loved hearing the stories about the chickens and thank you for the tips on the tomatoes!

    Also, I cannot believe that Juniper is going to be 1! I’m excited there will be good beer at the party though! That is a must. 😉

  10. I’m going to add to the love and say, I love the tone of voice you write in when doing these coffee dates. I cannot get that style of writing on my own blog, and really appreciate how you do a recap of whats going on with your life, while keeping it in a story telling voice. Bravo!!

  11. Marleen

    I’ve been reading your blog for a couple of years now and these coffee breaks really make my smile! They are so much fun to read.

  12. Amanda

    I am a long time reader of your blog and I just wanted you to know that I love reading your stuff and posts like these are so fun. You seem like an amazing person and mother!

  13. Jamie

    I’ve been a long time reader of your blog, and I think my favorite posts are the Coffee Dates. I love them!

    Also, I’ve got serious baby fever over here and I can’t handle Juniper’s cuteness!! It’s hard to believe she’ll be a year soon!

    You look so, so happy. This life suits you well!

    Stay cool, friend! I’m a Hoosier too and it’s been brutal lately!

  14. Jen

    Hi! Just wanted to say, I am a super long time reader and love these posts. I am sorry there are mean people- what you are doing is awesome. I love how you share your life and think what you are doing is awesome. Keep it up! 🙂

  15. I can’t imagine why anyone would want to be mean to you. You rock and what you put out there is amazingly full of life and generosity and inspiration.

    A good friend once told me this: when people are mean, it says more about them than it does about you. I remind myself of that whenever I need it.

  16. Sarah

    Oh my goodness, how cute is Juniper? You’ve created such an awesome little being, from the photos.

    I love these posts. This is my first year of growing fruit and veg and your garden and self-sufficiency is my goal. If I was sharing a brew with you, I’d be nodding vehemently about being a sensitive soul. I love that it’s something you appreciate about yourself – I need to do that too!

    Keep doing what you’re doing, lovely lady x

  17. Valerie

    Cassie, I just discovered your blog last week and can’t believe I hadn’t found it before. I have been noodling around with the idea of starting a blog for a few months, but hadn’t pulled the trigger. Your incredible generosity of sharing how to start a food blog was inspirational and just the push I needed. I went to BlueHost and got my domain name secured. Thank you and hope to have my site up and running soon. Don’t let the negative Nellies get you down. I’m sure I’ll get my share too!

  18. You are so sweet Cassie!
    I started my food blog a few months ago, because you made me feel everything is possible when you follow your dreams.
    You are a great human being, your daughter is very lucky to have you as a mother.
    I dont really mind when you talk a lot about yourself in our coffee dates.
    Is really good to know you are doing great.
    God bless you and your family.

    XO

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Meet Cassie
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Hello. My name is Cassie, and I’m a healthy home cooking expert.

I'm a Certified Holistic Nutritionist, and I've been developing healthy recipes professionally for over 15 years. Food is my love language, and my kitchen tips and nourishing recipes are my love letter to you!

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