TRINITY — Reconnecting with family led Garnet and Tim Freeman to an unlikely, but satisfying, second life in East Texas — one that involves blueberries.
Garnvet is originally from California, and Tim from Virginia; Tim was in the military and the family traveled around.
At one point, they decided to move to Texas, as Garnet’s mother lived here; they purchased the Thomas property on Highway 94, moved the family of five children and a grandchild in, as well as Garnet’s grandmother, and “now we’re all in one house.”
Buying a farm was a logical progression for Garnet, as she said she is into holistic health and knowing where food comes from.
“We came here, fell in love with the place,” she said. “My kids were running up and down the blueberry rows.
“I’m very big on sustainability and growing my own food, and not worrying about chemicals and pesticides,” she said. “Also, I love nature — I’m always barefoot and outside, and 90 percent of the week I’m wearing tie-dye. I like to be out in nature.”
The move to offering their crops to the public wasn’t in the cards at first, though.
“We were looking for our own sustainable place; weren’t even sure we were going to do a U-pick, but then everything started to grow,” Garnet said. “We ended up with buckets full of blueberries, our freezer is full of blueberries, and I said, ‘We’re going to have to open up because we can’t eat all of them.’”
Not opening a blueberry farm to the public was ironic, Garnet said, but said they were glad we opened up.
“So many people who have come here have shared stories about this place, and had we not (opened), we would have missed out on so many things,” she said.
Blueberries and blackberries can be picked for $4 a pound, but only are available during the short season, which lasts from the last week May to the first week in July.
Garnet said they do have weekly egg pickups, and people can message us to get on the list.
“We brought our chickens; it’s like Brady Bunch chicken edition,” she said.
Along with the holistic approach to eating, Garnet said she also is a doula — a woman who provides guidance and support for expecting mothers.
“A doula is a sacred birth space keeper, and I help mothers who are pregnant, in labor and post-partum, to empower them and help them be confident while birthing children,” Garnet said. “A mother will never forget what her births were like; my job is to keep that experience as loving, as peaceful and as sacred as I can for her.”
The u-pick nature of the farm is as far as the Freemans plan to go; Garnet said her husband wanted to retire, but owning a farm is the opposite of that.
“There are no plans to go mainstream with this,” she said. “I want to keep everything local. I’m all about home, family, friends.”