Dishing Up the Dirt

Meet Maize!

September 6, 2022

I am on a social media break at the moment so the only people who will be reading this post are those of you who subscribe to my blog. I’m actually happy about this smaller, more intimate group of folks who intentionally check in on this space. Instagram and Facebook have really flooded out these smaller spaces on the internet and I am trying something new which has felt good. Instead of posting everyday on a social media app and spending time scrolling through pages of random accounts, I have deleted those apps for the time being and have gained so much calm and quiet in my days.  It feels liberating to intentionally tune out some outside noise and focus on what is important in my life right now–which is keeping my family close and my phone far away. Seriously, keeping my phone in a drawer has felt SO good. Of course I take it out to make a phone call, send a text or snap a photo but I am handling it way less which just feels so good. I didn’t realize how much I checked my phone until I removed it from my sight. And maybe it’s just the postpartum period that I’m in right now, but making this change is exactly what I needed to really cherish the time I’m in. Which brings me to my big news!

My sweet daughter, Maize Hutchins Bemis, was born on July, 1st 2022 at 6:50am. She is named after one of our favorite crops to grow (corn) and her middle name is a family name which is also the name of the farm Taylor and I worked on years ago. She came into the world calmly right into her dad’s arms and we are so happy she is here. I was fortunate enough to have her at home in the same room that her sister was born in. My amazing midwives were here for a second birth and it felt so good to be in their care again. I have more to say about my homebirth experience(s) and the midwifery model of care but will save that for another post in the near future.

Maize has been a true gift to our family. We are cherishing this newborn time and feel less anxious than we did as first time parents. I think being less anxious has also made for a less fussy and anxious baby because she is CHILL!!! Little Maize is growing so quickly and I’m reminded of how fleeting this newborn period is. Instead of wishing time would speed up so I could get more sleep, this time around I’m just staying as present as I can. Even during those middle of the night feedings, it feels so special to be this little girl’s mom and spend time with her when the rest of the house is dark and quiet.  It’s honestly the best gift to myself after such an emotional and anxiety ridden first year with Pepper (which had a lot to do with the early days of COVID and being completely isolated as first time parents with zero outside help).

Pepper is taking her role as big sister very seriously! She is so sweet with Maize and loves to give her kisses, hugs, and tells her she loves her a million times a day. Also, every time she is doing something she thinks is awesome she’ll yell “look at me Maize!” or “watch me Maize!” It’s so sweet. The only hiccup with Pepper is that after the arrival of Maize her sleep has gone down the shitter! She wakes multiple times a night and it takes us a long time to get her down. Again, we’re just riding this wave and know this is a season of life and this too shall pass. We can’t complain because she’s honestly handled the transition really well otherwise.

I love being a mom to these sweet little girls. I never knew that motherhood was my calling but I have absolutely fallen head over heels in love with this role. And don’t get me wrong, it is HARD. Trying to balance it all. Taylor and I run and operate a full time farm and I’m wrapping up a huge project (a toddler cookbook!!) And of course, trying to be as present and calm during the days with our kiddos can be challenging. That’s also what was calling me to take a social media break. The intensity of trying to feel “connected” and “on” all the time is exhausting and I don’t want my kids to grow up with me behind my phone all the time. This break has been amazing and I’m continuing to take that break for a full 6 weeks. I’ll return to Instagram in the fall with some new intentions for myself on how I want to use the app. Until then, I’ll be cuddling my little people and enjoying the abundance of the fall harvest here at our farm.

Thank you to all of you who subscribe to the blog and check in on this space every so often. This tired mama is grateful for each and every one of you.

Take care and happy end of the summer!! xo






Leave a Reply

54 thoughts on “Meet Maize!

  1. Izzy Ragland says:

    You are so right about this time with little ones being so fleeting, enjoy every minute with them!

  2. Lenny says:

    Perfect! Cuddle on…

  3. Lucy Rosborough says:

    WOW! Thrilled for you and Taylor and PEPPER + MAIZE too, of course!!! How very sweet… Enjoy every minute away from
    your adoring public. We’ll be waiting for you but cheering you and your little family on. Congratulations to you all! Love from the Rosboroughs in Concord

  4. Val Peterson says:

    Congratulations on another beautiful baby!!! I followed your post’s during Covid, and remember the images you shared with Pepper!!! I have been a birth doula for 20 years now, and I am happy to see you had another home birth. Thanks for all your wonderful recipes and sharing your beautiful family.

  5. Cara says:

    Been reading your blog and following your recipes for 7+ years now…it has been so lovely to hear these life updates (I have a 1.5-year-old boy and we are considering trying for a second), not to mention that your recipes have changed my relationship with food and cooking! Couldn’t agree more about putting the phone down; glad to hear you are taking this time.

  6. Debra Velick says:

    Congratulations on your latest addition. I absolutely adore her name. Pepper looks so cute holding Maize, hope you will be able to add some pictures of the girls to your next project.

    I too have moved away from social media platforms, it consumes so much time and can impact my moods and overall well being. It has allowed me to enjoy my family more and cherish time with them. Enjoy all the time you can.

  7. Molly Kim says:

    Congratulations…sending you all good blessings to you and your family. I recently came to this blog via a friend. I actually had the good fortune to meet and work with Taylor’s Hutchins grandparents and visit them at the farm in Concord (I live one town away in MA). I’m touched that Maize has Hutchins as a middle name as I recall what good, good folks they were. Enjoy every moment and your 6 weeks “off” from social media.

  8. Diane Lloyd-Jones says:

    Wonderful news. Many congratulations. Take care and enjoy all the hard work – nothing approaches the joy of parenthood.

  9. Lois Ackerman says:

    Congratulations! Cherish all the moments as they fly by like summer always does!
    I had all 3 of my kids at home and agree that midwives are the best. What a different experience compared to conventional birthing. I loved the care of my midwives and they hold a very special place in my heart and friendships. And all that was 40 years ago! Thanks for sharing your life with us.

  10. Ann Meub says:

    Beautiful new family addition!! I adore the name Maize as well as Pepper! Happy mothering…

  11. Megan says:

    Congratulations! I’ve been enjoying your recipes and posts for the past couple of years – since I’m also a mother of toddlers and a lover of fresh produce. Our family welcomed a baby boy on July 2nd, so when you’re up with sweet Maize for late night feedings, know that there is another mama sending you happy thoughts from Minnesota 🙂

  12. Terry says:

    I knew motherhood was your calling❤️ Enjoy the little cuties!

  13. Jewel McKenzie says:

    Many thanks to you and Taylor for including all of us in your life journey. I couldn’t be happier for all you!

  14. Lexie says:

    always love your honesty. thank you for sharing your family with us.

  15. Dawn Shubert says:

    So very happy for you and your beautiful family. You are certainly prioritizing what really matters. Good for you!
    I thoroughly enjoy reading your blogs.
    Congratulations! Motherhood is everything.

  16. KC says:

    Welcome Maize! Sending all the best to you and your growing family – and thank you for the reminder to focus and be present for what matters.

  17. Jan Floyd says:

    Sending love and congratulations to you and Taylor on the birth of Pepper’s little sister, Maize! I love her name!

  18. Susan says:

    I have often said “thank god we didn’t have social media or cell phones when I had my 3 little ones”. I see parents talking on their phones all the time instead of talking to their kids. Put the phone away

  19. Lora says:

    Congratulations! Enjoy these moments as they pass so quickly.

  20. susan bennett says:

    So delighted to know how the birth went and that life, tho challenging, is really GOOD by you all
    Sending so much love…and continuing to deeply enjoy your produce from the farmers market….we drive up from Corbett…so worththe trip for numerous reasons
    Welcome lovely Maize..a sacred food and a sacred little human free little girl !

  21. Lorrie DeKay says:

    Wonderful news! I was wondering why I didn’t see you at the HR market when the marimba band played the end of July! am now a grandmother to 2 covid era babies (6/20 and 1/22) and got to spend a month with them in CT upon Sloane’s arrival. I can relate to your space, after sharing my daughter’s postpartum life, and fondly remember the early days with my own 2 young daughters. Enjoy every second. We will keep using your fantastic cookbooks and web recipes and appreciate any time you can spare for us all. Looking forward to the toddler cookbook to share with my grands!

  22. Christine Bayles Kortsch says:

    Congratulations! I’ve been reading your blog and using your cookbooks for years. I love hearing these snippets of your life as a new mom. It brings back sweet and wild memories of my own two precious boys at that age. 🙂 Now they are teenagers and although the challenges are different the love and laughter are just as wonderful! The foundation of attunement and simplicity you are building now will carry you through as they get older. I love how you’re intentionally taking a social media break. Even for those of us who try to use social media mindfully, it can really pull away from the present moment and the fleeting beautiful moments with our family and loved ones. Get as much sleep as you possibly can and enjoy those snuggles. PS I made your ratatouille toasts and cucumber radish salad for the extended family this past weekend and as always they were a HUGE hit. xoxo

  23. Kristine says:

    Congratulations on your new addition. You’re very smart to take a break and be present with your family. This is a precious time! Enjoy it

  24. Julie says:

    Lovely! Enjoy this time!! Hugs all around

  25. Sandy Hess says:

    So excited for you! Enjoy the journey!!!

  26. Melissa says:

    So sweet! Thank you for sharing, and congrats on the new book!

  27. Cari Minor says:

    Congratulations on your new baby Maize. That’s great news about Pepper being such a good big sister.

  28. Candace Blash says:


  29. Terri says:

    Congratulations on the new addition to your lovely family. Social media has become mighty frustrating during these uncertain times so I fully understand why you would take a break. Best wishes to all of you as you adjust to your growing family!!

  30. Kris says:

    Congratulations on your a-MAIZE-ing family!

  31. Cathy says:


  32. Brandi Young says:

    Congratulations! I agree that social media distancing feels so good! Enjoy the peace.

  33. Erica says:

    Congratulations on your new sweet baby! As someone who went on a social media break and has never returned, I love reading this blog. You are right, it is a much more intentional engagement for me. So happy you are enjoying your beautiful family!

  34. Elaine says:

    Congratulations on your beautiful little girl’s arrival. Enjoy your time now. Your faithful followers aren’t going anywhere 🙂

  35. Jana says:

    Congrats!!!! And good job in the social media break. 🙂

  36. Beth says:

    So pleased for your lovely family! It’s been fun watching everything, plants people, grow in joy! (And to receive such yummy recipes!)

  37. Michelle G. says:

    Congrats! Thank you for sharing.

  38. Donna Gilligan says:

    Congratulations to the happy family! Wishing all well!

  39. Lois says:

    Congratulations on the birth of little Maize from Lois in New Jersey. I love your recipes and have your cookbook. Cherish every moment you can spend with your 2 little babies — the years do seem to just fly away so fast. I send you wishes for a wonderful end of summer and autumn and the winter holidays with your lovely family. Be Well and Be Happy!!

  40. Linda Kanaly says:

    Congratulations to you, Taylor and Pepper on the arrival of Maize! Love their sweet names. We only have furry 4 legged kiddoes though we have similar approach to limiting time on technology/social media and instead being present and enjoying the two of them. I love your stories, your recipes and appreciate you sharing your life.

  41. Patty says:

    Congratulations!! Such a beautiful family. Thank you for sharing. ❤️

  42. Diane Luscombe says:

    Thank you for this beautiful family share. I think you are a beast! I love that you are taking a social media break. The second birth is such a gift due to previous experience as you mentioned. I’m so glad you are enjoying it. I know you are likely getting a lot less sleep/rest due to having two children but continue to enjoy it.
    I love your recipes and posts. Can’t wait for that Toddler Cookbook. Looking to buy it for my grandson (17 months).

  43. Louise says:

    Congratulations! to the whole family and kudos on reclaiming the space you want in life.

  44. claire says:

    Enjoy this very Special time! Congrats xx

  45. Christine says:

    Congratulations! She’s beautiful 🙂 We share a birthday too!

  46. Francy Heffernan says:

    You certainly continue to have your priorities on target. You are a wonderful mom just like your mom is. The girls are beautiful and such a gift. Sending love and virtual hugs.

  47. Debbie Telliard says:

    Pics are so darling!! Good luck with your new little one!! Love your posts and recipes!!

  48. Michelle says:

    This is wonderful news. Congratulations! I’m glad it’s been easier for you this time around. The early days of the pandemic made things so hard for new parents. Taking a social
    Media break and being in the moment is always a good thing especially with little children. Time passes so quickly.

  49. Irene Dvorchik says:

    It has been many years since I was a new mom, before you were born. There was no pandemic then, but still no support, and I absolutely did not know what I was doing. I just want to say that you are doing the right thing, absolutely. Good for you.

  50. Cory Raiton says:

    Bravo for taking a break from the things that don’t matter AT. ALL. and for focusing on the things that really (really) do.

  51. Theresa says:

    I just realized that I’ve been following your blog for 7-8 years now. Love watching your evolution and growing family

  52. Susan Duguid says:

    Just found out about you, and your farm as got your “Local Dirt” cookbook from the East Hastings (famous for homelessness, tent city, known as Downtown East side) branch of Vancouver Public Library. I had already requested J.B Mackinnon’s latest book. Your book happened to be showcased on the shelves when I picked up “What We Carry” for the second time hold, as it is a dense rich book, and could not finish it when someone else requested it. Trying to find recipes that will satisfy my teenagers, now 15. Have been eating within 100 km of us since we moved to Port Moody, BC which has been doable until the provincial state of emergency flooding of SW BC last November 2021 and now supply chain issues, is standard comment for almost anything that is out of stock. The need to shift for dairy from Vancouver Island, honey from Northern BC was a great introduction to new farmers. I used to have an absolutely great thick recipe book for all foods my NICU graduate twins needed until age 4, when I lent it to someone who had a toddler and wanted ideas, and never got it back. I was looking at the book they give out to the refugees and new immingrants at the non-profit I work for, and realizing it needed some boosts in flavour for young palates, so would be interested in your upcoming book. I work in Early Intervention, got my start in NICU at National Women’s in Auckland, and did EI in Colorado x 17 years before moving back to BC due to gun violence in the US, and also because my mom who lives here was then 91, will be 94 tomorrow! I am interested in Indigenous sources of foods, foods that deliver nutritional punch as we age. I looked up corn recently (due to CBC radio comedy skit on the ways we were fed it when young in Canada) as I knew Caucasians do not process it, and wanted to know why Indigenous people were able to exist on maize as colonization took away their hunting and fishing lands. My research showed, they used to soak the corn in alkaline water prior to cooking it, that will break down the outer kernel, and then the good stuff inside is released. I think Maize is a lovely name for girl. I have never done social media, never had time with twins, still can’t imagine ever having the time. For many people though, it is how they have garnered business sucess.

  53. Maggie says:

    Congratulations, mama!! I have followed your blog for years, and it has brought me so much joy. I am a mama of two little girls as well, and I was so excited to come here today and see that you all had welcomed another little one to the world. I loved reading about how you’re taking this time to unplug. It really is a liberating feeling to untether oneself from a cell phone. Best of luck to your sweet family! -Maggie

  54. Virginia Vilas says:

    A several year belated CONGRATULATIONS on TWO BEAUTIFUL LITTLE GIRLS !!!!!!! Wishing you and your family all good things for 2024.
    Kind regards,

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