May 19, 2012

Spotlight Brian Ogle of MaryJane's Farm Part Two

Brian Ogle
Moscow, Idaho
Son of MaryJane & Nick of MaryJane's Farm

MaryJanes Farm

Brian, his wife Ashley, and daughter Adria

Welcome to Part two of Brian Ogle

If you have not read Part One please click Here
Brian graciously accepted to do the interview and story, and I am very grateful.  It is such a busy time of year so I am very happy he took the time to do this. Part One was great now on to Part Two.

 Dolly:  Did your family farm? Tell me something about it please.

Brian:  Yes my dad farmed 640 acres of wheat, barley, peas and lentils here in Moscow since the mid 70's.  In the 90's with MaryJanesFarm growing and taking up more and more of his time and the farm bringing in less and less money (the 90's were bad for farms in our under 1000 acres.) he started leasing out his land to another farmer and he focused on the MJF business.  Whenever the lottery gets to an obscene amount of money I'll buy a ticket and daydream about how cool it would be to start farming our land again.  I already have my combine picked out (1985 John Deere 6622 with 222 header).  Then with all that lotto money I would grow all sorts of fun stuff and try to do some serious research on sustainable farming practices that can integrate into conventional farming.  Hey, since we are talking about farming I have a joke for you.  It is one that my dad told me a few years ago.  Do you know how to make a small fortune with farming?  Start out with a large fortune and farm until it's a small one!

Dolly:  Please tell me something that stands out in your mind growing up with the parents you have.  Your very fond memories or just memories in general about life there.

Brian:  Probably what stands out in my mind the most about growing up and watching my parents create and grow a small business is the value of hard work.  You have to be willing to work, work, work, and the on the weekends work.  This started when I was helping dad out during harvest.  14 hour work days driving a combine.  7 days a week and harvest usually lasted about 3 weeks.  Sometimes you have to remind yourself that "this is what you do" when you have to get something done.  What helps a lot is having a goof ball family where you can tell all sorts of jokes and set up a few pranks to break up the work day.  Mom always used to talk about how you need to combine work and play when you are weeding a quarter acre of carrots or bucking 11 acres of hay.  I still dislike bucking hay bales but at least there are some fun times in there.

Dolly:  How did you feel about becoming a father?

Brian:  How do I feel about being a father?  This is a tough one "Pretty good" seems a little short.  I enjoy being a father.  I won't lie, the first months were pretty busy.  The complete and utter life change that is having a child of your own was a little overwhelming.  Adria was born at home when we were renting a duplex in Moscow and trying to get the old farm house ready to move in.  We moved into the farm house 4 weeks after she was born.  The 4 weeks were spent installing bathroom sinks, bath tubs (our original 1912 cast iron claw foot tub is GREAT), kitchen sinks and building a front entrance deck.  All of this on about 2 hours of unconsciousness was interesting.  I use the term unconsciousness instead of sleep because it was the very first time where we would lose hours of the night after Adria would wake up to nurse.
     As Adria gets older and older I feel that our life is developing a sweet balance.  She recently graduated to a toddler bed from her crib (she is a little over two now) and I have discovered how awesome/amazing/heart-warming/"ahhh shucks" inducing it is to tell your kid made up bed time stories using an owl puppet.  She's never been interested in that until now.  I feel a tremendous amount of responsibility to do my best to raise a caring citizen who will hopefully cure cancer (are my expectations too high?). Or, at least do something positive for the world during her lifetime.  It makes me reflect on my life and where I would like to be 10, 20, 50 years down the road.  I hope to be contributing to local causes.  Engaged in the community through volunteer work or public office. (you never know).  If I am still on the farm I feel that would be ideal.  Living on the farm provides so many benefits to my family that are just not available to most folks.  Adria will know where her food comes from and what is actually involved in growing food that is used to feed families.

Dolly:  Brian I think you have a talent for writing.  Do you think maybe you will write a book someday?

Brian:  It is funny that you mentioned writing a book.  I always joke with my wife about how I'll take a sabbatical some day and write.  The Great American Zombie Novel.  The best part about planning for the zombie apocalypse is that most of the prep is transferrable to any other doomsday situation.

MaryJane and Nick in tilled fields on the Palouse

© National Geographic, December 1995, Jim Richardson
MaryJane and Brian's Dad Nick Ogle
National Geographic Arcticle Page 89 of December 1995 Issue

Meet Alina Kathleen Ogle
Born 2013

photo credit

Congratulations Brian and Ashley
Thank you Brian for sharing your interesting story.  
It is such an endearing on of you, your family and farm life.


  1. Thanks Dolly for sharing this! Brian sounds like a great guy! :)

  2. Loved part two Dolly! Thank you Brian for sharing your story!