This realization triggered something for Dr. Glenn and his wife Janis.
They uprooted their family of six from their home in Bethesda, MD, and bought a farm in Poolesville. It was less than 20 miles away, but those 20 miles made all the difference.
“We wanted to provide a more rounded lifestyle for our family,” Janis recalls. “The first thing we did was buy an old Chevy Blazer. Then we got busy teaching our kids how to get dirty and learn the rural life.”
Fast-forward to today, and Greg Jr. is not only splitting firewood (and training his three boys to do the same), but he also is feeding, nourishing, and engaging his community as co-founder, CEO, and farm manager of Rocklands Farm Winery & Market.
As someone married to one of Rocklands’ farmers, I’ve heard this foundational story many times. Each time I hear it, I get goosebumps. Because whether it’s embracing a rustic lifestyle or pursuing an acting career or making soaps, haven’t we all had a moment when we’re faced with some longing buried deep within us? Sometimes -- perhaps most times -- we let the longing pass, and let it sink further within. Dr. Glenn could have seen his son struggling with the firewood and gone back to his Bethesda home without further thought.
I’m grateful that he didn’t. As someone who grew up in Rockville, MD, and lived in DC for much of my twenties, I can relate to enjoying a soft and comfortable lifestyle. Every time I go to Rocklands, I’m reminded that some of the most rewarding things come from a rougher, less comfortable way of life.
I don’t work there. I don’t show up at 7 a.m. ready to milk Pearl the cow or prune vines or corral pigs. But I like telling stories. And as a frequent visitor with a backstage pass into the life and lore of Rocklands, I know that this 200-year-old farm is full of them. Stories behind the wines being made, and the flowers being grown, and the people who have listened to their own dreams by coming to work here.
Through this blog, it’s my privilege to go behind the scenes and relay some of these stories about my favorite farm and winery. I hope you’ll join me. Because even though I like to think that Rocklands is my best-kept secret, I also can’t stop myself from rambling about it to coworkers, neighbors, people I meet at parties who ask about this great wine I brought … anyone who will listen. I figured it’s time to start writing about it and let its stories be told.
Because when a story gives you goosebumps, you probably should share it.