St Joseph Center in North Little Rock

Original 1910 orphanage

We found a wonderful and historic location in North Little Rock, Arkansas. The St. Joseph Center is a non-profit organization based on a historic building that was once a children’s orphanage run by the Catholic Church.  The impressive structure was built in 1910 and currently there are several Artist’s Studios inside the spacious old building that houses other functions.

Currently the St. Joseph Center is an educational and working farm. The grounds are really beautiful. The first thing Sher and I did was to take a stroll around the main building, enjoying the old statuary and flower beds. We also got our first look at the garden plots. Turns out that there is a large citizen garden space  where locals can come and, for a modest fee, have their own personal garden plot.

Bull, right and cow

Recently sheared sheep

 

 

 

 

 

The Farm Stand, in other words the store, offers locally sourced goods ranging from in season produce to canned veggies, jams and jellies, pickles and cheeses. Local sourced flour, grains, and even meats are for sale. We certainly took advantage of Michelle’s opening the store for us and we made several purchases including pickles, pickled green beans and peppered Colby Cheese.

Raised garden boxes

View of the lovely grounds

 

 

 

 

 

There are quite a few head of livestock on the farm. Steve directed us to pastures and pens where goats, sheep and beef cattle make their homes. The sheep had recently been sheared ready for the hot summer. I enjoyed seeing the good quality cross bred cattle. Several calves were still on their mothers and would have been fall calves. There are also chickens supplying a great supply of free range eggs.

We bought honey. This is where it was made.

Sher and I liked visiting this educational farm. Owner’s Steve and Michelle made our visit to this sustainable operation very enjoyable.   Oh, least we forget, there are two sets of beehives, and we purchased some very, very good honey, produced by the honey bees right there on the St Joseph Center.  Here is the farm website.

Fun muddy day at Crater of Diamonds State Park

Today Sher and I gambled on the threatening rain and went to the Crater Of the Diamonds State Park. We had an absolute blast even though the ground was very very muddy and hard to walk in.

Getting ready to head to the muddy field and begin our search for diamonds

 

Here I am shovel in hand and ready to find one of those huge diamonds shown in the picture next to me

The shed in the background is where you screen the soil for diamonds and gems stones

Continuing our journey to Texas, today via Arkansas

Nashville TV last night was kind of going nuts over overnight lows in the low 20’s.  It was another very cold and very windy day. Today’s travels took us across I-40 past Memphis into Arkansas, the home state of that famous (or to some infamous) Clinton family.

An RV park downtown on the river

 

Little Rock is the state capitol, and what a pretty city it is. When you follow I-30 south through town you can easily drop down into the city and go to the Clinton Presidential Library. Just follow the brown signs and you can easily get to the library. The parking lot was plenty big, and there was lots of room for RV’s. We actually met a nice couple from Ohio who were also on the way to the Austin area.  Sher and I had seen them on the road at least a couple of times today.

Clinton Presidential Library

The formal name of the Presidential Library

 

 

 

 

 

Anyway, the Clinton Library was a huge building, however I was not really impressed with the architecture. And I was surprised that there was not a statue or at least a bust of Bill out front. The area around the library has lots of green space, trails, benches and other amenities.

We went on from Little Rock to Texarkana. Seems this town can’t decide whether it is in Texas or Arkansas. The Post Office is actually on the state line!