Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Dirty Life

"As much as you transform the land by farming, farming transforms you", Kristin Kimball

The Dirty Life is a memoir written by Kristin Kimball and is the story of how she fell in love with a farmer and began a different way of life as together they transformed a derelict farm in a remote town in the US. I loved this book and count it as one of my best birthday presents. It's easy to read, refreshingly honest about the hard graft of farming but at the same time passionate about the process. Kristin's enthusiasm and honesty roll over you like honey.

She also doesnt beat around the bush: "tranquil and farming are two things farming is not". Farming sounds bone achingly tiring. But she also explains its promise of connectedness with the land, the celebration of effort and her gratefulness that she found it.

One of the first things I did after reading this book was to go out and plant more in our vegie garden. More eggplants, more capsicum, peas, lettuces, corn.....quite simply more. This book made me feel passionate about my garden.

Then I re-looked at a local CSA and it's organic boxes of fruit and veg. It buys the majority of its food from local sources. Combined with our local biodynamic grocer (which is run by a local farmer, who sources local if he can), I feel like I'm making a concerted effort to support local farmers and industry. And I guess like Food Inc, that's one of the key things that comes away from this book. How important it is to try and source your food locally and to support local industry.


  1. I am getting this for Christmas... I ordered it ages ago & had R put it away so I wouldn't be tempted to start reading it til we go on holidays! I think I saw the review on Hugo&Elsa, who raved about it!

  2. (Oh, and of course, from your birthday blog post too, which linked to that Hugo&Elsa review!!)

  3. You'll love it Bec. It's such a good read :-)

  4. That looks great.. will have to see if I can convince the library that they must own a copy so I can read it.

    Kind Regards

  5. Truly a love story, in all the best ways. The title says it all-- farming, food and love-- and even if you aren't into farming, this is an honest and witty memoir about what it's like to live one's life authentically- raw and honest. I loved it. Anyone who supports the local food movement or lives in a small community will love it all the more.