154. Sustainable Living, Organic Baby Food and Small Family Farming | Moxie Farms | Columbia Falls, MT | Naomi Morrison

I was coming home the other day and stopped at the Farmer’s Market, because I am always looking for guests and I have never needed guests so bad so if you know of anyone who would make a great guest please don’t hesitate to let me know. So I met Naomi from Moxie farms, organic you like me are busy! You said you have a full time job and were at the market after work and you said today you have to take your son to practice so you have a family! Where are you from?


Moxie Farms

Tell us a little about yourself.

Naomi from Connecticut moved to Montana in 2001, moved here to 2005. We’re raising 2 children about 3 miles from center of town… We started when we first moved here behind the post office off of Nucleus Ave, we bought our house so we could garden, it was a corner lot with a beautiful apple tree

put in over the course of 10 years, and we built a 2200 because. foot garden, open the front door

beautiful place

  • raspberry bushes
  • blueberry bushes
  • nurtured that old standing apple tree

fortunate to find this piece of property here, right outside of time, it’s 4 acres, and we are slowly cultivating that!

My best advice to anyone

start with what you could handle

scale back from that

very overwhelming…

We are working on our place that we’ve been working on for 20 years! Slowly that’s great advice!

Not yet, we hope to start doing those if not next spring by the end of the summer. This year we will have pre-Thanksgiving dinner, where we set up a ton of tables

thank everyone for the support It really does takes a village to get this going and it wouldn’t be anything without the friends

Do you have a CSA?

I started marketing CSAs this winter

just have a couple that were signed up

farms with the Valley

encouraged to stay with those farmers

In not here to take away business… Im here to do what I love doing,

want everyone to be able to experience home grown food, so if you are already in relationship with a farmer, I encourage you …

As I say a lot ,the head of my podcasting group says, all ships rise in a high tide.

I’d like to say, the farming community here is so supportive

I brought up that apple tree from my own property, I really just want to say, one of my conversations with my old time neighbors at that time, who lived there in the 50’s it was his first house from getting married…. so I asked him…why does almost every single lot in this town have an apple tree, an old root tree, and he said Amazon… when we moved here we couldn’t get that stuff

it was really special for me to cultivate that tree. That’s what  I feel about the arming community here, we really support each other and grow together…

I can’t express enough gratitude and inspiration for everything I have already learned from being a hobby farmer who gave away half of my food…. to going to the seeds and trays etc. It’s a lot of money to get started…


we’re not looking o make an income

provide something

How old are your children? Do you have boys? Boy and girl?

son, who is 10 years old, solstice baby will be 11 soon and I have a daughter who just turned 7!

Can I ask, are you millennial

I think we’re gem-x’ers

a traditionalist,

really hard workers, don’t mind getting dirty

don’t handle dead animals

that’s where I draw the line

preserving our food

limit our grocery

Kalispell creamery

stopped drinking milk

local creamery closed

hated the taste of commercial milk

all the products!!

That’s the way my husband is too! He’s been really into eating our own apples!

Tell me about your first gardening experience?

I don’t remember my first gardening experience, because it’s always being a part of my life, my mother always had a garden, remember my dad out there tilling the soil so my mom could bring in her manure…. I don’t remember fi she started with seeds or bought starts at nurseries

remember picking string beans, strawberries and mint

you name it,

my mom would always say in the evening, she would say pick out what would you want for vegetables and sometimes it wouldn’t even make it inside, we would just go forage in the garden and then go back in and grill our meat….so that’s kind of the culture that I have raised my children with

Baby Garden

my son didn’t eat any grocery store food till he has was about 2

my daughter we knew was coming so we grew a baby garden for her…

ice cube trays,

when she was growing up that’s all she ate, exception of avocado

  • bought bulk peaches
  • all the fruit that was being grown close to here
  • froze them
  • cheeries…
  • so that’s what she would eat for her first years….

How did you pit the cherries, frozen?

I would just put the cherries whole

took the pits out,

easy to cut them open and slice and dice when they were frozen she would eat them cold

I would rate till they were thawed out all the way and take the pits out….

She has this thing called the food babe army … she got the nasty stuff out of Kraft…

She’s on Snapchat and not many people are on snapchat so I send her snaps…

She’s done amazing things.

I just did her 7 day detox and ti’s the first time in my life I went without a chocolate chip or ice cream or because.. It’s true she says do you want to get rid of your sugar cravings and it worked….

This episode i s hopefully

One of the baby food books that I purchased, it’s a purple book its like the Super Baby Food book. It gave me all my ideas on putting the pureed food in the blenders, I would literally cook the dinner for my family for I and I would literally purre the untying vegetables for one week and then I had a whole month of vegetables in the freezer

one ice cube is a serving so depending on the age of the child, they would get one to 3 per meal

how to mill your now grains with a coffee grinder

I was doing my own grains and beans,

beans from my garden

So I was doing a whole host o things brown rice not that I grew

instead of getting Gerber rice

introduce your kids to quinoa, kamut, a host of dried beans… and your kids grow up not wanting your sugar as much nd they like all those grains…

Another one of the AERO people is Bob Quinn is and and Kamut, his interview is one of my favorites. Also Dave Orin, they have that rice Farro, that’s not quite rice but it’s locally grown….

FV Ag community AERO

How did you learn how to garden organically?

It’s funny, I see all these posts on Facebook about the importance of organic food, one of my favorite posts was a cartoon, it was a carrot being, the carrot and he said IDK understand why I’m considered organic and they’re considered food. I’m food and their considered poison

I started the community garden, with the leadership cohort here in mister, but we gave up our plot this year, I stayed involved all these years, it was so important to share the experience.

those that moved into our plot said to me, they didn’t really have do anything CFalls all this stuff started growing again

the stuff that we did plant in their is amazing

all we do is use is compost

use it to add the nutrients to our soil

quite amazing,

what just a little bit of love can do to an area

never had to use

leave it in the garden,it’s already destroyed, leave everything else alone

learn by experience

if we had a major infestation I guarantee we would that kill off what it was

we’ve never had to do it in 11 years

I think there is a time or a place

that’s how I feel about animals

Like Kalispell Creamery

they will give their animals antibiotics

they don’t put it in their feed

it’s not a preventative measure

I want it to get better

if it’s necessary

using it as a prevention


if you’re eating in

I believe in organic measures

It’s important they use it as important as wee do…

That’s how I feel about crops, if you need to use it

find the alternative measures

use your extension office

they might be

just because you had a bumper crop one year

every years it’s a cycle

this year it’s string beans

we can’t pick them fast enough

last year we had such an incredible year for broccoli

Tell us about something that grew well this year.

This year every gardener said

just because you’re expecting  to get some

We didn’t w

we don’t do anything differently year after year,

cycle of what’s growing



how hot the sun is at the right time for whatever plant is banner

nothing you can do  to make it better then what it is going to be

supporting that type of environment

gets into your water supply

thought of putting chemicals in your children’s mouths…

so important to me to have a garden

Smiths has done an incredible job of

dry good products

you can go in there for

10 or 20¢ more for organics

You can by cereals that cost just as much or maybe a little more then the cereals full of sugars

all the chemicals and so forth

Kroger to bring affordable healthy locally grown food to our valley…

We have westen Family and I love that they have the bins there in bulk, they have organic raisins there that ar affordable

That’s what my kids use in stead of sugar they use probablyy… I just have to ask as a side note have you heard about eh Lakota/raisins Sioux who are trying to protect their land for their children…have you heard about anything like that.

I have heard a lot about that, something I don’t want to talk about and there are varying opinons… my full time job is with the Glacier National Park conservancy so I am pretty aware … so I will

leave that to those that are the most knowledgeable

I do want to say this I will commend them fro continuing their protesting and fighting for the naturalist of their land…and striking to protect their land for future generations….

Is there something you would do different next year or want to try/new?

Right now, we really focused on our vegetable gardens

in the last couple of years, when we lived

We have always worked on our vegetable gardens, in the past few years, we have started to getting into meat birds and pork for our family. Raising different varieties and test markets with friends, try this bird, this is your typical Tyson

a bird can walk all over our property

tell us the difference how you like the taste and texture how you like

really surprised the comments

most people like the bulk size of the Tyson but like the testers of the heritage breeds that we purchased

did not do much different on the difference


less pounds per animals, take longer to grown

didn’t have to eat as much, tastier more filling

didn’t have that god awful front breast that would literally make the bird fall over because it’s breast grew to fast

another host of exotic birds this spring

butchering and inspected

serve our valley that doesn’t have any local bird

plenty of pork…

She told me this spring

when you’re ready…

my husband hasn’t done the final totals

I’m the caretaker for the

I’m a vegetarian

they are getting a well balanced

I do the husbandry of the animals

3-4 troths

the heritage breed would only get 1 tray

they would take a whole bunch more

we do all the work, we give the meat to friends…

Tell me about something that didn’t work so well this season.

Again, I don’ really consider things not going well, I go back to the whole cycle., it’s not about what goes well, it’s really part of that cycle. It all comes back around. Our tomatoes

early green,

harvesting a bunch to ripen in

stuff under hoop house, and it’s amazing

one crop can have such varying successes and failures

there are things that you can do to make things happen better

first time we’ve used a hoop house

we’ve always had greenhouses

they always are too hot

its inexpensive for the plastic

recycled wood


50 feet long

if somebody wanted to do that in their backyard

and it’s

I learned about

Raised layer hens

little quail eggs

don’t want to spend as much on chicken

just so good

so adorable

love quails, sing all the time…

something we’re gonna do on a regular basis

even if we get to keep all the quail eggs

harvest the males so we can cook them

just put yourself out there,

go with what your passionate about

what you love…

Which activity is your least favorite activity to do in the garden.

Funny I have always loved to weed, intimately seeing your plants, knowing about your roots, are they are deep, this year, starting this farm, growing from a garden, raising 2 kids,

has become my least favorite, this year it’s overwhelming

your up close

not taking your giving

making the soil better

always one of my favorite things

in subsequent years…

What is your favorite activity to do in the garden?


Of course everybody loves going out an picking the vegetables


A favorite tool that you like to use? If you had to move and could only take one tool with you what would it be.

My favorite tool would be the stirrup hoe,

That answer comes up a lot

My second favorite that my husband uses all the time, that

Flat horizontal edge

grated edge helps you dig better

get around the plants

that we use for potato harvesting

beating the really tough weeds…

it is a handy tool…

A favorite recipe you like to cook from the garden?

You know everybody’s favorite recipe

pumpkin bread or zucchini bread

farm fresh eggs

apple sauce from trees

organic sugar


Butte area flour

few other items

won’t eat any sauce other then the ones I make

canned sauce

even if I’m seasoning it

they will only eat mine

quick simple no spice

spend a lot of time peeling

throw apple pieces in a pot

don’t throw in jar


clumps of apples

what has disintegrated

no sugar,

every fall, make dozens of bread

dilly beans

can it all in the fall, i don’t

Let me give this tip.

I would love to share

so many people go out and buy

soup stock at the store

then at the same time in the summer

we don’t know what to do with the probablyy… cash because there’s so much of it

I just chucked up all of my zucchini


threw it

boil it down till it’s thick

quart size freezer bags

that was my soup stock base,

add onions or garlic

add more water to make it soupier

first of all it’s mine so you don’t have any preservatives from soup stock at the store. I used all of zucchini

Plus I was thinking then the husbands and kids who don’t like to eat zucchini probably don’t even realize their eating it!


when I still had leftovers


yogurt and fuit



A favorite internet resource?

You know I would say, that 100 days of real food has been an incredible resource for me. In my early 20s I was tested for food allergies, that was pre-everyone having allergies and intolerances. So that’s how I learned how to truly eat healthy and going organic

always ate out of the garden

high school that’s when you get the peer pressure lets eat the chips and junk food. When I went to college was when I starting having the problems with preservatives and yeast and all the other things

all these tips on cooking

100 days of real food has get me on target with foods that are healthy!

ways to make pop tarts


pastry dough


It’s basically a pastry dough that you put jam, I was using the local flour to make the dough and I would make jam

my jam

low sugar jam

1/2 cup for a whole batch which

have those

ways to cook things

recipes get old

my recipe muffin that I’ve used for years,

I just go on there and get recipes, so just going on 100 days of real food pledge

I have to give a shout out to her, her sponsors are things like planet box for school lunches, reusable

still have the same ones that I purchased 2 years ago

using plastic lunch boxes

would break after 3-4 uses. You spend the extra money up front and you have a quality lunch box for your kids

She’s done amazing things, she basically took what I did 20 years ago and made a forum for it!

Perfect timing because it’s back to school!

She has a resource of quality healthy snacks

what to look out for, when you might think something is unhealthy and they are, so she has an ingredient list

weekly on things

connected with the Food Babe you mentioned early

the kind of play off each other and support one another. She is just a  great resource

so many things…

List of websites that I send out on a regular basis, and she’s number one…

I might have to recommend that to my second grade parents, maybe we’ll even do a food study?

A favorite reading material-book, mag, blog/website etc you can recommend?

You asked me earlier what my favorite tip was,

What is the best gardening advice you have ever received?

I guess the reason

most of the stuff that my husband and I learned was from Mother Earth News Magazine

they have upped their ante and it’s become interesting to us again, it’s become more experienced

more advanced articles

in that magazine now

great first person learning

Vegetable Gardener's Bible by Edward C. SmithMy husband his literary bible


Ed’s O


 Food Growing Bible Food Growing Bible

basically an Encyclopedia of growing food, anything you need to learn about pests, what it takes to grow, the life cycle from seed to maturity is for plants, how you want to fertilize organically, its all about organic produce. Those would be my two favorite print resources.

And then I would jump back to my baby food book, it’s a purple book…

The Mother Earth News is a great beginning start.

I should say with Mother Earth News they are out of Kansas so a lot of their articles are the southern style, it’s a different environment then they talk about , if you want to start a

hobby farm


sustainable practices

it’s a great piece to get, if you get your subscription with your credit card on file, it’s only $10 a year.

If you have a business to you have any advice for our listeners about how to sell extra produce or get started in the industry?

This farm is my fourth start up. My husband owns a roofing business, I have a marketing business on the side, we started this farm, all still in existence and successful. It’s very challenging to start you own business.

Call your secretary of state. Make sure you fill it out correctly because they charge

starting a non-[profit, find someone who is knowledgeable in starting a non-profit, it’s really important to get that paper work correctly, both of the 2 I sent came back first time approved within a month of submitting paperwork…

know that

you have to add a percentage of the things that are unforeseen into your budgets because there is so much that you may not thinking about till your in the thick of things

You’re gonna have a busy season and during that time you’re not gonna have time to think about anything but what your focused on


even if you are hiring employees

who is doing the work when

because in the end it’s  still probably underprepared for your busy season!

I was cooking for a golf course! I swear my manager how much she did, balanced with college kids, and people want a day off here, but everybody wants a day off, and then dealing with the customers, and the bosses. and all our schedules and did it with elegance and grace, I couldn’t say enough about her!

It is the middle of summer, so some people might not hear it until December! So you’ve just been dropping amazing golden seeds all along and just wonderful.

Final question- if there was one change you would like to see to create a greener world what would it be? For example is there a charity or organization your passionate about or a project you would like to see put into action. What do you feel is the most crucial issue facing our planet in regards to the environment either in your local area or on a national or global scale?

I think that globally the biggest thing is our oil needs, and gas needs, Idk how to fix that, I pay attention to it, I drive an SUV, so I’m part of the problem as well. We all rely on oil consumption

any mining for oil for minerals for anything is so hurtful to our environment

IDK what the solution is that is probably the one thing that I would like to change…

finding a way to get 

I agree, and we have some of the answers, it’s the car companies, who know how to build more efficient cars, Mike took a job delivering the paper while I wasn’t teaching and it was 6k miles a month that’s an oil change every 3 weeks, We burned through the gas…

Cows, use a ton of petrochemicals, using gas to irrigate! or to transport their food in the winter, or all sorts of extra effects.

Do u have an inspiration tip or quote to help motivate our listeners to reach into that dirt and start their own garden?

I really believe that our children, I know many of us do, are going to be taking care of us in the future, I think if we focus on helping them succeed,  establishing mentor programs, getting home EC back in schools. so boys have to take it and they know how to cook as well, it, having farm classes

The biggest thing I get at the farmer’s market is, “you’re gonna charge this for that produce?!”

I think do you understand the blood sweat and tears to bring this vegetable to your plate

food is so undercharged

  • we devalue food at every expense
  • because of those factory farms
  • because it can come so cheaply that way

it takes a lot of resources

to grow those vegetables

we do it to love to

i’ll eat it then if you can’t value your food that comes to your table

I value

I know there are thousands of others that do. So pleas thank your farmer

it really is blood seat and tears

We named our farm Moxie farm

we were raft guides in Maine, and we worked for Moxie outdoor

we loved the name

Ability to face difficulty with spirit, nerve and guts! That’s what it takes to farm, you have to be prepared for the unexpected. You cry, you argue a lot

it’s stressful

it’s the most rewarding thing to do next to raising children. I hope that you take that with you today… and your listeners take that with them… I’m sure your listeners I’m preaching to the choir

spread that

understand the value of food

making it healthy and organics

That makes it more important.

I think that’s part of the beauty of my show, is that you and I might know that but the majority of people I k

I started teaching on the blackfeet… he told the people

Jump Up!

Try Hard!

And Don’t Give Up!

reminds me of your moxie, definition

be prepared with the unexpected….

go with your heart

I be been trying to come up with a name for my listeners, I kind of think it’s something like

green future growers, because your’e growing a greener future for us!


How do we connect with you?

You can like us on Facebook at Moxie Farms!  You can also call me at 406-871-6607 or reach us at MoxieFarmMT@gmail.com

Thank you very much for letting me reach out to your listeners!

farming community is amazing

please reach out to anyone of your farmers

I hope so,

it’s my birthday weekend… If anything Ill be there Saturday at least…

OK, well then

I’ll send you a link

I’m gonna try to go to the AERO conference, and get a weekend off, when

I’m on all the regular channels

I love Snapchat! I take all the pictures in snapchat, save it to my camera roll and they save your story and it makes like this cute little video… I just made this new snapchat channel at AwesomeMontana! And put the OGP on my husbands’ phone and the

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Also if you know anyone from any of these states I am always looking for guests!

  1. Alabama
  2. Alaska
  3. Arkansas
  4. Connecticut
  5. Delaware
  6. Iowa
  7. Kansas
  8. Louisiana
  9. Maryland
  10. Mississippi
  11. Missouri
  12. Nebraska
  13. Nevada
  14. New Hampshire
  15. New Mexico
  16. North Carolina
  17. North Dakota
  18. Oklahoma
  19. Rhode Island
  20. South Carolina 
  21. West Virginia

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