Our Crazy Life & Peanut Butter Cookies-Hope & Harmony Farms

The word “SCHEDULE” makes me cringe! Summer is over, school is back in session, and volleyball games are back on the schedule, along with a million other things! My schedule currently includes: cooking and shipping peanuts while also preparing for our fourth quarter (the biggest quarter for gourmet Virginia peanuts); working on and implementing our marketing plan; actively pursuing new sales and maintaining our website; cutting the grass at least once a week; preparing nightly meals for my family, and nightly cleanup.

I’m not the only one with a crazy schedule around here. Harvest is in approximately four weeks and at that point Jeffrey will be full steam ahead working as many hours as it takes to complete this year’s peanut crop. We are currently servicing all the tractors to ensure the diggers and combines are in tip-top shape and ready to roll when Mother Nature sends the signal that our prized Virginia peanuts are ready to be dug.

My dad says nothing is worth having if you do not have to work for it. But as I stand and look from the outside in, I see e-mails to be answered, a disheveled house, and mom and dad issuing last minute chores. I also see a few eye rolls along the way! With everything on our schedules, I cannot help but somewhat roll my own eyes when I am told: “You are so lucky to have your own business and make your own schedule.”

I may be attending my child’s volleyball game, but I must also go home and head back to the office to finish my work. Because we are a small family business, I am the personnel. I am not complaining, but I have set my priorities and the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. I am able to be present and fully participate in my children’s lives and for that I am very thankful. However, sometimes it takes just as much work to recognize the results of hard work and that my dad is correct. I should not allow my schedule and the events that fill it to cause internal eye rolls or a lack of appreciation for both the disadvantages and advantages of my work calendar.

So with that thought in mind, let me remind you that with sports and school come bake sales. It is only a matter of time before I hear: “Mom, can you bake some peanut butter cookies?” And when the request comes, I will not roll my eyes or cuss the extra item that is being added to my schedule. I will remind myself that this is the crazy life we have built and that I am so very thankful that this life is mine! As I begin to bake those peanut butter cookies, I’ll also remember to once more thank my parents.

Mom and Dad, you were right. Nothing is worth having if you do not have to work for it. It is my hope that our girls remember that life is about the choices you make and that you are the only one accountable for your choices. My choices include working hard to appreciate the good things that surely follow. I hope they one day make a similar choice and return home to  Hope & Harmony Farms.

 Virginia Peanut Butter Cookies:

1c. white sugar

1c. brown sugar

1c shortening

1t. vanilla

2 eggs

1t. salt

¾c. creamy or crunchy peanut butter (your choice)

3c. flour

2t. baking powder

½t. baking soda


1. In a bowl combine white sugar, brown sugar and shortening. Using a mixer at medium speed, beat the ingredients together until they are light and fluffy.

2.Add vanilla, salt, peanut butter and beat eggs in.

3.Add flour, baking powder and baking soda. Stirring until mixed.

4:Chill dough for one hour

 5.Roll dough into 1 inch balls and put on cookie sheets. Flatten each ball with a fork, making a crisscross pattern.  Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F. oven for about 10 minutes or until cookies begin to brown.