I was very fortunate to be raised on a dairy farm in the hills on the outskirts of Portland. Our farm was called Sunny Hill Farm and we raised Brown Swiss dairy cows. My grandparents (Emma and Hans Boeckli) purchased the land in the early 1900s My father, Paul, was a Portland policeman and worked hard on the farm as his “second job”. I loved growing up in the country and having wide open spaces to run around in and help with the farm chores. My mother was an avid gardener and also had many creative talents, including sewing and drawing. So much of who I became is a result of living in such a natural environment and learning how to work hard and the value of a job well done. From an early age, I had an interest in “creating” things with wood or just anything I thought I could make something out of. I would rummage through my Dad’s wood pile of left-over fencing, etc. and ended up making a really cool playhouse that wrapped around one of the fir trees in our backyard (it was even two stories), and later when I was in high school I decided my upstairs attic room was too open, so I built a wall separating the space with my bedroom on one side, and the stairs and storage on the other. I used my Dad’s old wood for this wall too and of course knew that just wouldn’t do for a teenager’s room, so I covered the wall with material (my version of wallpaper) and put up banners and posters to make it more fun. It’s no wonder I fell in love with the restoration of our current home and wanted to get my hands on as many power tools as possible – ha ha.

Our farm holds so many wonderful memories for our family. It is no longer in our family, but the current (and past) owners of the farm have come to love it as much as we did and we enjoy many happy visits to our Sunny Hill Farm (they kept its name) with its current “caretakers”. It is such a thrill to know they treasure our farm as much as we do.

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