Tom has farming roots with his mom’s family, the Huttons, where he helped farm sugar beets, wheat, and beans growing up near Manvel, ND. Tom loved music, particularly playing the piano, from a young age and aside from his faith in Jesus and farming, music has been one of the defining forces in his life. Until he met Rebecca at Northwestern College, that is.
Rebecca grew up as a city girl, with a heart big enough to be from Texas. She has always had a great love for people, for animals, and for music. Rebecca’s family moved between Minnesota and California a few times during her growing years as her family worked with different churches. It is this connection to the west coast that eventually led us to our almond farm in northern California.
After marrying in 1997, our first child, Mikaela, was born in Grand Forks in 1998. We moved to Milwaukee where Tom worked for Cessna for a year before migrating west to the Golden State (Tom continues to balance farming and working with Cessna in Sacramento maintaining Citation Jets). We bought our first home in Arbuckle, CA in 2000 where our sons Zechariah (2000) and Briden (2002) were born. Everyone we meet asks us why we chose Arbuckle, and I always say, “why not.” We love the people here and the rural way of life, very similar to life back in Manvel, ND. We were keeping an eye on land those first few years and found our “homestead” in 2003. We moved into a very small farmhouse with our three kids, and have added Caleb (2004) and William (2006) since.
Over the last few years we’ve been working on building a little bigger home to fit our growing family while learning to farm almonds at the same time. We love being active in the community here where we are involved with our local church, Young Life, school events, county development, and revitalizing downtown Arbuckle. Sometimes we feel like immigrants from a far away land, but you could say we truly have put our roots down here.