What’s in a name?

Picking a farm name is tough work…  and there were lots of options since my place is windy… rocky… sandy… and MANY suggestions were thrown around reflecting lots of memories! But after a round of beers at the Newaygo Brewing Company, a name was picked!

I (Leslie) started my farming adventure as a 4-Her in 2000.  I was shepherded (goat-herded?) by many great friends who supported my love for agriculture. The matriarch of my goat herd was a sungau-colored American Alpine named Irish Valley Sizzlin’ Sidney. Sid continues to hold a special place in my heart. ❤

Leslie and Sidney
My first goat Sidney and I in 2004.

My Grandpa raised Hereford cattle on a small hobby farm he purchased south of the city of Belding, Michigan from the Aubill family. His place was right next door to his best friend’s farm, and they both kept Herefords.

Grandpa Leppink and herefords
My Grandpa checking his cattle during lunch, notice the tie under his coveralls!

In 2016, I purchased 10 acres from my Grandpa’s best-friend’s farm. My ground was also owned by the Aubill family at one time.

With these memories in mind… as a tribute to the previous owners, the farm’s location ‘at Belding’ and the loose translation – ‘the beautiful’…. I christened my small farm…

Au Bel Farm

And if you’re thinking ‘How the heck do you pronounce an A with a U…’

  1. You’ve probably never heard of one of the best rivers in Michigan…
  2.  It’s “Awe Bell”

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