Milk and Childhood Memories

When I was a girl growing up in Miami in the 70’s we used to get our milk at something called a Farm Store.  This was a very small building with a wrap around drive through.  There was no speaker or menu involved, but instead a glass sliding door opened and someone stepped out to fill your order.  I remember that sometimes we only purchased eggs and milk and other times Mom’s order would include cottage cheese, ice cream and sour cream.  I am not sure how the farm store became an institution in south Florida, but I am wondering if it had something to do with home milk delivery.  Is it possible that in this very warm climate milk couldn’t be left outside the door, so instead quick stores were created and people came to pick up their order?  I am not sure, but as a child I thought everyone visited a farm store for the dairy items.

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My husband who is nine years older than me actually remembers the milk man leaving the milk at the back door.  He was delighted when the order included chocolate milk, and he wasn’t beyond begging to get it added.

Recently we started creating somewhat unique milk memories for our younger children.  Not far from our house we visit the dairy with our own clean glass jars, and Barbara the farmer fills them with fresh milk.

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Not only does the farm have a black and white cow sign, like the one I remember at the farm store as a kid, but real dairy cows roam the pasture surrounding the milking barn.

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I took a particular liking to how #97 struck a pose when I pulled out my camera phone.

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Alas, I tore myself away from my black and white four legged model with the flashy earring and drove back to the milking barn.  It doesn’t smell like a grocery store.  In fact, my oldest daughter says she immediately thinks of the elephant exhibit at the zoo, when I open the car door to get out.  But the view…well, it cannot be beat.

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And today as I write this post and reflect on my “milk memories” I am reminded of how fleeting childhood is.  Thirteen years ago today my youngest son was born.  It is so impossible to believe this little boy is now a teen.  And I hope that not only will he have fond memories of going to the farm to get milk, but he will remember this day when he enjoyed his birthday dinner of beef lo mien, egg rolls, and homemade pudding.

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“Sunsets, like childhood, are viewed with wonder not just because they are beautiful but because they are fleeting.”
― Richard Paul Evans, The Gift

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