About the Family

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Three Fruits and a Veggie Farm is a family effort. When Tchinina (also known as Grammie) started dreaming of a farm, her daughter, Rose, and son-in-law, Kelly, couldn’t help but dream a little too. It snowballed from there. Now we’re moving from the city to the country to launch our dream. Fifteen-year old Maggie is the veggie; you can guess who the three fruits are…

More about us…

 

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Tchinina Rayburn

Little did I know when I was a little girl running around the garden chasing the Bantam chickens while our goose Wednesday was chasing me, that one day I would be a farmer. What everyone calls “Sustainable Agriculture” was just living to us. We grew or raised everything we ate except flour, sugar, salt and other grain staples. Our neighbors provided milk and eggs. Mr. Kriner had the most awesome smokehouse that I would hide in just to smell the meat and enjoy the quiet. He brought us a wagon of watermelons one day to secure our promise to stay out of his corn-field while he was harvesting.

Like a lot of small families, Dad thought we would prosper in the city. We made the move to town when I was ten and I’ve been trying to get back to the farm ever since. My daughter Rose and I have lived in the country on and off throughout our lives but never struck out with a purpose to farm. As I neared retirement I felt uneasy with city life and the pressure of corporate management. My oasis was the outdoor living space in my garden and my hoophouse. Wondering what to do next, I started a dream board – and I discovered the center of my dream was sustainable living, the farm.

After five years of learning, experimenting and endless searching for the perfect home, we have arrived. Come along with us on our adventures in farming. It could be a real hoot!

 

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Rose McCracken

Confession: farming is a brand new adventure for me. My mom (Tchinina) is the one who knows everything there is to know about plants. I, on the other hand, am still learning. I do, however, have a reverent regard for nature. I consider the outdoors my holy place. I feel strongly about the health of our earth and our community. This is what inspired me to sell my house in midtown Tulsa and move to the farm. I want to live a simpler life, to have a full view of the sky in all directions, to get my hands dirty growing my own food.

What expertise do I bring to Three Fruits and a Veggie? I’m the business manager. I handle the finances, the marketing, the strategic planning, etc. Maybe not the funnest job on the farm (I imagine herding chickens would be pretty fun) but someone has to keep the spreadsheets up and running.

I know this bio will change dramatically over the next few years as I evolve with the farm. In addition to other interests, I plan to pursue the study of herbs for health and healing. Who knows…In another year or so, I may be able to say I’m an expert in sustainable building practices, or a free-range chicken whisperer. I’m sure life will look quite different as time passes. For me this adventure is just beginning!

 

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Kelly McCracken

Sex: Male

Occupation: Debate Coach, Booker T. Washington High School. Tulsa, OK

I am a complex and delicate flower. I like long walks along the Arkansas River. I enjoy a good glass of ale, and stupid high school movies where innocent parties get wildly out of control. I’m 6’ 3, I have hazel eyes, size 13 shoe, and—oh, wait, this is for the farm? Oh. My apologies.

I guess the best way to tell you who I am is to list my titles and duties at Three Fruits:

Head Chef. “Cookie.” I’m your culinary one-stop-shop. From huevos rancheros to cupcakes, from farm-to-table dinners to a good cup of joe, I wield the knives and brandish the pans.

Head Tree Trimmer. “Hacksaw.” (Currently under contract, but in negotiations and embroiled in a minor strike.) Until recently I thought I wasn’t allergic to poison ivy so, obviously, I was the designated lumberjack—free to roam and raze dead trees, underbrush and thicket be damned. Funny thing. Not so un-allergic afterall. My duties in this capacity are temporarily suspended only to be resumed after a goat is purchased. We will name her “Hacksaw Jane Dugan.”

Farm Truck Operator. I drive the old truck. Her name is “Berneice.” (Truck has yet to be purchased.)

Things in High Places Reacher. Due to my freakishly long limbs, I’m the person on the farm that gets stuff off of the top shelf. This service can be performed anywhere in Green Country for a small, hourly fee. Will willfully relinquish this title to Maggie in due time. She’s a tall one too.

Resident Philosopher. It’s easy to sit in the field and just think. So I do that on occasion.

Field Operative. “Double O Helpin’.” I dig where Tchinina says dig. You dig?

Exterior Butler. “Sir Lawnsworth.” I mow the lawn. I weed-eat. I keep the yard tidy. You could say I butle.

I wear many hats and have many nicknames. So goes the life of a farmer. Farmer? What? I’m a farmer. Sounds strange, but I like it.

 

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Maggie McCracken

I’m The Veggie.

My name is Maggie. I’m a thirteen-year old, 5’8, lanky string bean. And I am proud of it. I’m in the 8Th grade. I play the trumpet and dance ballet, tap and jazz. I’m on the Jr. High Tennis Team. My daddy taught me how to play. He’s pretty multi-talented.

I don’t have a specific job on the farm. At least not yet, Grammy will give me a job soon enough. That’s alright. I don’t want to sit around all day. Besides daddy and I, our little family is under the height 5’3. If he’s not around I’m the second in charge of reaching things on high shelves. It’s an important job. I also have a patch of watermelons and various other melons. I love watermelon. I would eat it all the time if I could. If you have watermelon, I’m your best friend.

I love flowers. Not in a girly way. I like how they work, and what role they play in the environment. Although I am afraid of bees, my goal for being at the farm is to overcome my fear of stinging insects. Wish me luck. In my little section of our world of blogging, I’m going to write about the wildflowers on the land, their history, what natives used them for and the things they do for Mother Earth. And, obviously, what I did on the land that week or month.

I’m going to be completely honest with you, Mr./Mrs. Bio Reader, I was not happy about moving out of our cozy little home in Tulsa that we have lived in for eleven years. I’m still not entirely on board. But, whatever makes daddy and Rosie happy, I’m OK with it. I’m very excited because, hopefully one day, I will get two goats. I want goats so bad. I already have their names picked out. Berneice and Myrtle. My dad and I are going to have plenty of arguments about the names. Let World War Goat Names begin.

 

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Take a look at our blog where each of us will be posting about our unique farm experiences.