The Farm Chicks Antiques Show 2014 Curator Map

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The much anticipated 2014 Farm Chicks Antiques Show Map is here!

Click the poster to see the map. Hip! Hip! Hooray!

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The Farm Chicks Show Curators

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This week I’ve been talking all about curating. It’s something I really believe in, so it makes sense that I apply the concept to The Farm Chicks Antiques Show as well. It all begins when I start pulling together all of the folks who will be selling their wares at the show. Throughout the year, I receive applications from potential participants, and it’s from this pool that I select those who will be selling. This process is very important to me, and really sets the stage for what will unfold at the show. There’s a lot that goes into this process: What do I think of the pictures they’ve submitted? What is their style? How do their words come across to me, and so on. The curation begins here.

Curating a show of this size can be really tricky because I start out with 300 blank spaces and need to fill them in a way that feels just right to me. It needs to be visually appealing and the finds and creations need to be amazing. After all these years, it really comes down to trusting my instincts.

Once I’ve identified all of the participants for the show, my curation is now complete. I’ve curated what I sort of look at as my palette (the overall show), and now each of them will bring that palette to life (their individual spaces). It’s a beautiful thing.

I used to call the participants “vendors”, but that title never sat quite right with me. They are doing so much more than just selling their wares. For those selling antiques and vintage, their process starts with the hunting and gathering of their goods. Then comes the repairs, cleaning, sometimes the painting or refinishing, sorting, and pricing, all while staying true to their overall style and the display they’ll be presenting for the show.

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Image: Heather Bullard

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Image: Heather Bullard

When the show rolls around, they’ll load their goods and begin their journey to the show. And once they arrive, they’ll unload those wares and begin their display, just as they’ve been laying it all out and practicing for the whole year leading up to this one weekend.

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Image: Samantha Cabrera

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Image: Kate Jennings

For those selling handmade goods, much is the same except instead of hunting and gathering, they’re building and creating.

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Image: Kate Jennings

So anyway, I didn’t want to call them “vendors” any more, because you know, they’re a pretty big deal. Can you guess what I’ve re-named them? Curators!

The Farm Chicks Show Curators. I love them and I know you will too.

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Image: Heather Bullard

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Image: Heather Bullard

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Image: Kate Jennings

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Image: Heather Bullard

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Image: Kate Jennings

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Want to learn more about my thoughts on curating? I talked about it here and here.

The Farm Chicks Show is always held the first full weekend in June, in Spokane, Washington. This year, it’s June 7 & 8. You can find out more about it here.

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Between posts on my website, I document my life on Instagram. You can follow along with me there.

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Curating Your Wardrobe

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Tuesday I was talking about curating in general and how you can use that practice to really make a difference in your home. But curating applies to other areas of your life, like your wardrobe for example.

Around the end of February, I start dreaming about cute outfits that don’t involve heavy sweaters or boots. Spring and summer are on my mind and I begin to think about the one color that will be my inspiration for the season. This year, I’m into yellow. Well, I can DREAM of all these cute things, right? (Sources listed at the bottom of this post).

yellowSo when I start thinking about my season’s color, I start noticing it all around and taking little mental notes of what I love. My plan is to buy a handful of new things in that color to mix in with what I already have. Usually a new top, maybe a couple of tanks, some sandals,  a piece of jewelry, and if I can find a steal, a cute new clutch or tote.

By doing this wardrobe curation, I’m bringing together a collection that will work and make sense – the old with the new, giving me lots of mix and match options.

To get started, I recommend going through your closet and dresser drawers. Move your fall and winter pieces aside and place your spring and summer pieces in the most prominent space. Do you have flowery tops and need a new pair of stripe or solid shorts or capris to balance them out? Would you wear yellow stripes with that navy blouse? Yes! What does that pink skirt need? How about a buttery yellow tank? Yes! And so on…

I think you’ll find in the process that you can also do some thinning of what you have on hand, and that’s good too. Because too much is too much. That leather purse you’ve been saving because it’s a name brand? Take it to a consignment shop, list it on ebay, or trade with a friend. Curation is all about letting go of what doesn’t work for you any more and putting together what does.

Tips:

Want to find lots of choices in your color? Go to your favorite websites and search for it, like I did here on Bodenusa.com with the search: yellow

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Do you have a hard time putting colors together? Click around on your favorite websites or leaf through your favorite catalogs. You know all those cute shots? They were all carefully put together by great stylists and can be very inspiring.

Cute new pieces don’t need to be “new”. Check out your local vintage clothing and thrift shops for one-of-a-kind finds. Estate sales are also really great for vintage jewelry, dresses, and blouses. Just remember, only buy what works for your collection, not items that you’re only buying because they’re a great deal. I promise, you’ll never wear it.

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Tomorrow I’m going to be talking about the one and only Farm Chicks Antiques Show and the curation that takes place there. Yippeeeeee!!

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Sources:

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1.) Flowery top by Boden. 2.) Sunglasses from Nordstrom. 3.) Lemon slice earrings from Forever 21. 4.) Bangles from Forever 21. 5.) Keds sneakers. 6.) Ciate polish. 7.) Kate Spade coin purse. 8.) Daisy Eau So Fresh fragrance. 9.) Bike from Target.

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Image by Heather Bullard

Curating

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This week I’m going to be talking about curating, what it means, and how it affects our lives. Who knew, right?

I think when most people hear the word, curator, they think of a museum and the people who bring together a museum’s collections. But curating is actually intertwined into our everyday lives more than we think. Take your home, for example. What you’ve created, the collections you’ve accumulated, and the furnishings you’ve gathered are works of your curation.

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But let’s be honest. Over time, many of us accumulate more than we need, our taste and style evolves, and oftentimes, we’re left with clutter. That clutter can actually affect us in negative ways, becoming much like a constant noise, interruption, or a chaotic element in our lives. And all of that curation has pretty much gone out the window. But the great thing is, we can start anew, and it can be life changing.

What if this spring, rather than just spring cleaning, you curate your home? From holiday collections to linens, to that broken side table you were going to fix up but never got around to? What is your style? What do you love? What can you eliminate? No matter what you have, or what you don’t, you can create a curated home.

Tips:

If you get overwhelmed by the thought of curating your possessions, take it one room at a time. Start on one side of the room, and work your way across. Pull unwanted items out of the room and place them outside the door, to stay focused and to see the results of your work as you go. Once you’re finished with that room, take the unwanted items to their new destination. To the garbage can or recycling bin for unusable items, the car for donated items, and a designated area in your home where you can process things to be sold at a yard sale or on websites such as ebay or craigslist.

To avoid burnout, give yourself  little breaks in between rooms. Have a sandwich, take a walk to the mailbox, or enjoy a few minutes leafing through your favorite magazine.

Moving forward, avoid buying things only because they’re on sale.

Make a list of items that you really want for your home and keep it in your purse. When you’re out and about you can reference your list to help you stay focused on what it is that you really want in your newly curated home.

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Tomorrow I’ll be talking about personal style, fashion, and pulling together and curating a wardrobe for the season.

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Asian Quinoa Lettuce Wraps

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I’m always looking for healthy ways to add proteins into my meal making and quinoa is a big favorite of mine. I like how it can sort of mimic ground meat, when flavored well. I first created this recipe as an appetizer for a friend’s birthday party and have since been serving it to Colin and the boys for dinner. The first time I served it, one of the boys said, “Wow mom, this is actually really good!”

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Asian Quinoa Lettuce Wraps

Ingredients

  • 3 cups Cooked Quinoa (1 cup dry quinoa, cooked with 2 cups water yields 3 cups cooked quinoa)
  • 1 cup Minced Carrots
  • 1 cup Finely Chopped Savoy Cabbage
  • 1/3 cup Finely Chopped Green Onions
  • 2 tablespoons Sesame Oil
  • 1/4 cup Soy Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Fresh Chili Paste (This amount just adds flavor. To make it spicy, add 1-2 teaspoons more.)
  • 2 tablespoons Roasted Peanuts, Chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Packed Brown Sugar
  • 1 head Butter Lettuce

Directions

Pull butter lettuce leaves off of lettuce head, carefully keeping each one whole. Rinse and dry and place on a serving tray.
Chop carrots, savoy cabbage, and green onions.
Heat sesame oil in a large frying pan over medium high heat. Add chopped vegetables and fry until cabbage begins to wilt, about two minutes.
Add cooked quinoa, soy sauce, and chili paste. Turn mixture in the pan with a metal spatula, until combined. Cook until soy sauce and chili paste begin to caramelize and quinoa begins to slightly brown, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and place into a serving dish.
Combine peanuts and brown sugar and place in a small bowl, alongside the quinoa filling and lettuce leaves.
To eat, fill a lettuce leaf with several spoonfuls of the quinoa filling and sprinkle with peanuts. Eat like a taco.

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Spoon into lettuce leaves:

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and top with peanuts. The brown sugar peanuts add a nice flavor pop and crunch to the savory filling:

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Notes:

The quinoa mixture will taste slightly salty on its own, but you’ll find it’s just right once eaten in the wrap, as it needs the flavor to shine through the lettuce wrapping.

If you would rather use meat, substitute one pound of ground chicken for the cooked quinoa. Heat pan with sesame oil on high heat, add chicken to pan before the vegetables. Cook for one minute, then add vegetables, soy sauce, and chili paste all at once. Cook until chicken is all cooked, soy sauce and chili paste are beginning to caramelize, and mixture is beginning to slightly brown.

You can find Ground Fresh Chili Paste in the Asian food section of most grocery stores. If your store doesn’t carry it, you can order it on websites such as Amazon.com.

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Win A Farm Chicks SWAG Bag!

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Once a year, The Farm Chicks Antiques Show converges on the Spokane County Fairgrounds. A weekend of friendship, fun, shopping, and creative inspiration ensues. It’s also the one time a year that The Farm Chicks merchandise is available. This week, I though it’d be fun to give away a swag bag of goodies from the show!

A handy totebag:

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Farm Chicks Penant:

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Nature-inspired Farm Chicks cap:

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and a Farm Chicks license plate holder:

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Post Edit: This giveaway is now closed, winner announced below:

To enter, simply leave a comment telling me about your experience at The Farm Chicks Show or if you haven’t been, why you’d want to win this swag. You have until Sunday night, March 23rd to enter. Winner will be chosen randomly and announced on Monday. This giveaway is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. Good luck to you!

Congratulations to Amanda Morris, the winner of this giveaway!

How to Make Party Signs

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When you put a lot of effort into throwing a great party, don’t miss out on adding the final touch: Signs to mark the way. For farm-themed signage, hang signs from pitchfork tines.

All you’ll need is some paper, a printer, double-stick tape or a glue stick, and ribbons to hang. Start with a colorful paper you love. Large scrapbook sheets work perfectly.

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Next, print the wording for your sign on a standard sheet of paper, and cut out the message you’ll be using, in a shape of your choice.

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Adhere cut out message to the pretty paper with double-stick tape or a glue stick.

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At this point, you can affix the sign to a building, or sign post, or you can attach it to something like a pitchfork (as seen above). To hang from pitchfork tines, using a hole punch, punch out holes and affix with pretty ribbon. Lean pitchfork against a building or car, or dig a small hole to place handle into. Stabilize with packed dirt.

All images by Ifong Chen

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Farm Chicks Style Wedding

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A serene little Idaho farm was the scene for a summer’s early afternoon, joy-filled Farm Chicks Style wedding.

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The bride wore a vintage cotton dress.

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Twinkly lights and a fancy chandelier were all that were needed for the barn, where the ceremony was held.

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An old farm truck became the stage for the bluegrass band.

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A bridesmaid’s bouquet.

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The groom’s and groomsmen’s bowties, handmade. Herbs were used for true country boutonnieres.

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A hearty breakfast was served, including waffles, eggs benedict in mini cast-iron pans, fresh fruit, orange juice rosemary sippers, french toast stacks with berries and cream, miniature quiche, pancake stacks with fresh berries and syrup, and ice-cold milk.

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The tables were adorned with fresh flowers, plates topped with fresh herbs, and homemade napkins were placed at each setting.

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Delicious desserts included a homemade butter cake, a crepe cake, and miniature bundt cakes.

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The truck stage was the perfect spot for the bouquet toss.

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Guests were treated to a tea station for a takeaway treat.

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And everyone lived happily ever after….

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This wedding story was created for the book, Stylish Weddings. You can find the entire story, including how to make the bow ties, potato-stamped napkins, dessert flags, farm bucket cake stand, Serena’s Butter Cake, Orange Juice Rosemary Sippers, swizzle sticks, tea station, and tea bag takeaways all in the book.

Acknowledgement:

Book332Alisa Lewis (pictured) collaborated and styled the wedding with me. You can find out more about Alisa Lewis Event Design here.

Sources:

Furniture and wedding materials, supplies: The Attic | A Vintage Rental Company

Photographer: Ifong Chen

Venue: Cable Creek Farm

Food: Feast Catering Company

Flowers: Fleurtations Floral

Bride’s dress: Carousel Vintage Boutique

Veil: Stella’s Design

Crepe Cake: Erin Blackburn

Farm Truck for Band Stage: Murren Family

Music: Rockin’ B Ranch Bluegrass Band

Hair: Camille Cuts Me

Make-up: Shasta Hankins

Dishes, Glassware, and Silverware: Event-Rents

Herbs & Tea: Sweet Roots

Herbs: Hansen’s Farm

Herbs: Strawberry Hill Farm (509)-238-6919

Special thanks to the bridal party:

Bride & Groom: Rose and Pete Cowger

Bridesmaids: Kaitlin Ellithorpe, Amy Ellithorpe, and Elizabeth Stadley

Groomsmen: Alex Murren, Aaron Adkinson, and Jake Stadley

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serenaalisasummer

Melt-in-Your-Mouth Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cake

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I made this cake for Luke’s 15th birthday. He wanted a dessert that was a chocolaty surprise. He’s been on a peanut butter tear lately, so I figured he’d love the combination of peanut butter and chocolate. I mean really, how can you go wrong with that?!

This cake is mouth watering, melt in your mouth delicious.

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Melt-in-Your-Mouth Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees farenheit. Oil and flour three 8" round baking pans and set aside.

Add all ingredients, except the boiling water, into a mixing bowl. (I recommend a batter bowl to easily pour the batter into the baking pans). Beat by hand with a wire whisk, until batter is completely combined and smooth. Add the boiling water, and whisk, just until blended. (Don't be alarmed - the batter appears watery). Evenly ladle (or pour) the batter into the prepared pans. Bake for approximately 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool slightly on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Invert cakes onto cooling rack to cool completely. While cakes cool, prepare frosting.

Milk Chocolate Frosting

Note: This is the perfect amount of frosting to layer the top and sides of this cake. If you prefer to skip the layers of peanut butter and peanut butter cups (described below), you can double the frosting recipe and frost the layers with the frosting instead.

1/2 cup butter, just slightly cooler than room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
6 Tablespoons whipping cream
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Beat butter in a medium-sized mixing bowl until creamy. Add in remaining ingredients and beat until smooth and creamy, and free of any lumps. Set frosting aside.
Layering ingredients:

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
6 double packs of peanut butter cups, totaling 12 peanut butter cups in all. (I prefer Reese's Peanut Butter Cups).

Once frosting has been prepared, remove peanut butter cups from their wrappers. Reserve 9 of the peanut butter cups for layering and roughly chop remaining 3 peanut butter cups, which will be used for layering in and sprinkling on the finished cake.
Once cakes are completely cooled, it's time to start preparing the layers. Start by adding one cake layer to your cake plate. Top with 9 of the peanut butter cups.
Add another cake layer on top of the peanut butter cups and spread with peanut butter. For best results, add all peanut butter to center of cake layer and spread outward to the sides, keeping your knife on top of the peanut butter. If knife touches the cake directly, it will pick up cake crumbs, making it more difficult to spread the peanut butter.
**Note, if you want your cake REALLY peanut buttery, increase peanut butter to 1 cup.
Top with last cake layer.
Frost with the Milk Chocolate Frosting. Again, it's easiest to add all frosting to center of cake and spread out and down the sides from there.
Smooth on frosting until completely covered.
Sprinkle with chopped peanut butter cups. If you're able, allow the cake to sit overnight (covered) for the very best results. However, if you need to cut into it right away, you won't be the least bit disappointed. In fact, your family will fall in love with you all over again. Mine did!

Note

To make cupcakes using this same cake recipe, click here.

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Between posts on my website, I document my life on Instagram. You can follow along with me there, Username: thefarmchicks

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The Making of The Farm Chicks 2014 Poster

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Each year when gearing up for The Farm Chicks Antiques Show, I put a great deal of thought into what the theme for the year will be and what I’m hoping to express. This year, I was wanting to do something with birds and was feeling inspired by a large collection of prints I’ve been gathering for a gallery wall over the years. Then, one day on a trip to H&M, I spotted some darling jeans, covered with birds that had a sort of watercolor painting look which got me to thinking about birds once again. So, I set out on a Pinterest search for bird art, hoping to find the perfect artist. After a great deal of searching, I happened upon Danielle Kroll.

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What really caught my eye was this page from one of Danielle’s journals:

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After discussing my project with Danielle, I commissioned her for this year’s show campaign. Danielle and I discussed the concept I had in mind and she came up with some initial sketches. I chose a sketch she presented depicting birds in flight and she got to work on bringing that sketch to life and created these three options with variations on colors, text placement, borders, etc.

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After a small change to the text and a slightly different border, this year’s poster was born:

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The “Will You Go With Me?” theme this year is a play on the notes passed around school between boys and girls in my younger days, young love, and love birds. Now, this love note is from me to you. Will you go with me to The Farm Chicks Show? I hope to see you there!

Notes:

The Farm Chicks Antiques Show is held the first full weekend of June each year in Spokane, Washington. You can read more about the show here.

You can RSVP for the show on Facebook here.

Danielle Kroll is a Brooklyn based artist and designer who creates beautiful works. You can learn more about her here.

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Between posts on my website, I document my life on Instagram. You can follow along with me there, Username: thefarmchicks

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