We have a long story and love to share it...so sit back, enjoy a cup of hot coffee and begin to get to know us a little better.
We are Jeff & Dianna Clevenger. We have 8 children, (yes, EIGHT) and have been married 20+ wonderful years. We love our family, we love what we do and most of all we love the life we live.
It all begin when my family moved to Missouri from Long Island, New York to "get back to the land" and leave the "rat-race" of life in New York...this was 1979. My father (an auto electrician & mother a nurse) decided they wanted a better life for their children and wanted to "live the dream" of the farm life and began camping across the country all to settle in rural Missouri and start the dream of a dairy farm...(now that is a very long story made short). So over the next several years my dad (a Brooklyn Italian City Boy) learned through blood, sweat and tears that farming isn't exactly the "dream"...it is hard, toiling, sun-up to sun-down, never a vacation, never a day off, never a sick day WORK, but he loved it! And as a child, my fondest memories are of collecting eggs, driving on a wagon full of fresh hay, milking goats, milking cows and sitting on my daddy's lap in the milk barn listening to him recite "The Night Before Christmas" and reading his little pocket Bible while sitting on an upside down bucket! I can still remember the smell of that barn and the voice of my father reciting that poem even in the middle of July!
In my teen years, I loved to cook, I loved my family & I loved my dad....I also DECIDED I would NEVER MARRY A FARMER!!! With that being said, I tell my daughters to never say NEVER...and make your words sweet...because one day you may eat them!
Jeff and I were long-time friends, he worked for my father and we grew up together as became best-friends. We married young, yes, young, dumb and in-love (but we have never regretted a day of it). Jeff worked for MoDot and I as a floral designer and wedding cake decorator in a bakery. After several years, our first daughter Grace came into our lives and changed everything. We never knew the joy children could bring to ones lives as such a gift of a child. Then came Glorianna, our second daughter, then Georgia our third....then Josie our fourth, then Sadie our fifth!!! You see I was the oldest of 6 and as a teen said, "I will NEVER have 6 children...OR marry a farmer"....better make those words taste like good cookies! Jeff and I thought God must really have a sense of humor....5 GIRLS...REALLY??? Well in 2012, we were blessed agian with a precious and wonderful gift from God, a little boy Owen Jeffrey and then again in 2014 with little Evan Michael! This year, while celebrating our 20th Anniversary God chose to bless with yet another sweet addition who arrived just in time for Christmas, Andrew William.... And YES, that makes EIGHT!!! I laugh and tell Jeff that God must have a BIG sense of HUMOR and knew that we would need help on this farm in our old age and decided to give us the BOYS last!!!
In 2010, Jeff and I decided to take the biggest step of faith we ever took...He left his job, of over 13 years, with Missouri DOT and we decided to open a bakery and start a farm and work together as a family. We then set out to do what we loved most....family, farming and the farmers markets!
You see, several years prior to this, Jeff was working 10 hour days with MoDot and I had the four girls at home (being a stay-at-home-mom) and decided I really would like to make a little extra "bonus" income. It was the beginning of spring and I loved to bake, so we talked and I said you know there is a small farmers market just down the road and I would like to make a little extra money, so what if I bake some bread and cinnamon rolls and see if I can sell them and make a few extra dollars. Well, all I can tell you is that the Lord took those little loaves of bread and cinnamon rolls and fed the multitudes...in 3 short weeks our little country kitchen looked like a full-time bakery...of breads, cinnamon rolls, pies and anything else I had time to bake. We were blessed in ways I can not even explain. Jeff started meeting the girls and I at the market after work and helping me...it wasn't long until our little extra "side-job" had us thinking of a country road-side stand (with all the extra veggies & fruit from Jeff's hobby garden) with fresh produce & breads!!! That my friend is how we got started to where we are today!
Jeff had grown up with a love of gardening and working on his families "traditional" family farm of beef cattle and row crop farming, and loved it! So we decided to move and start a from-scratch farm and bakery and merge the concepts together of what we both loved! Farming, Baking, Our Family and Each Other!! We began "Pastimes Farm & Bakery from our desire to bring people back to experience the past, when times were simple and memories where treasured. A time when food was home-made, strangers came and left as friends, and things for the home where hand-crafted by those you loved and passed down to be loved...the ever-longing desire to take a journey back to simpler times of days past.
We hope that you will join us in an ever-loving farm adventure and take a step into the past and make us part of your family. We strive to treat every customer like you are part of our family. Other farms offer similar products, but we strive to offer the best services that come with a personal touch to bring our family & farm to your home!
Many Blessings~Jeff & Dianna...along with Grace, Glorianna, Georgia, Josie, Sadie, Owen, Evan & Andrew