Who is Orange Grove Road?
I grew up in Washington state (also known as the emerald state), blessed to have parents who loved to garden and preserve abundantly. This girl completely took it for granted and often questioned why my father thought it was worth it to spend all his free time outside in the garden. It wasn’t until I had my own family, that I began to realize the value of homegrown food.
There were times in my father’s life that he and his 7 siblings survived by eating weeds, milking a cow, hunting, and at times even chewing on road tar just to have something in their mouths. My Father was relentless and dedicated, and he became a pharmacist and gave me a life where I was able to take these basic needs for granted. I really had not grasped the gravity of all that my Father had been through.
When I was about 15, the home I had been raised in had reached a “Garden of Eden” semblance. I was genuinely surprised when friends would come over and enthusiastically harvest fruit. I only saw it as an allergy inducing torturous chore!
It was right about then that we moved to a small town to live on about 6 acres in the forest. My father constructed a beautiful pond filled with koi fish and lilly pads. A majestic maple tree sat along the main trail which led to a swampland that rested just at the end of our property. One morning I remember looking out my bedroom window to see a doe with her fawn chowing down on apples from the enormous tree in the front yard. Inconceivably, somehow I remained unimpressed.
Some years later as my final college year was coming to an end, I found myself becoming increasingly fatigued with the smallest tasks. I had unexplainable pain in various places in my body and I became embarrassingly forgetful. At the tender age of 25, I was branded with this weird condition called “fibromyalgia” or FMS. That was supposed to be something that you didn’t have to worry about until your 60’s right?! I felt as though I was not going to be able to live a normal life and worried that I would not have the endurance to ever have a family.
Orange Grove Road is a symbol of choosing a “harder” healthy path.
…Plus we live in an orange grove 😉 I tried in vain to just eat “healthy” and exercise a lot which made things much worse because I didn’t realize I was overtaxing my endocrine system. Thankfully, one fateful day I met a dear friend, Brenda, who was bold enough to intervene. She was the landlord of the building that I had just set up my fitness studio in, and ended up being an answer to my prayers. This brilliant woman had seen a need, and created a support group for people with FMS. This was not a place to complain, but rather a place to research and learn. Her research led me back to a symptom free life…and right to a point of deep appreciation for the lifestyle that my father had exemplified.
Her website, fibromyalgiarecovery.com, explains a lot of what she found, which empowered us both become symptom free for over a decade now.
Proof is in the puddin’
Now we live on a 50-year-old 1-acre orange grove in the Arizona desert with my husband and 2 children, striving to do exactly what my wise father had done all along! I’m grateful to say I have the gumption to be a wife and mother, homestead, cook from scratch, and enjoy my fitness routines. I’m hoping to raise my children to appreciate each blessing and be good stewards of the earth. It would be silly to say that it’s all easy or perfect, but I feel more fulfilled and satisfied with life than I ever imagined possible.
This creation is place to gain and share knowledge with each other. I’m not an expert in anything. I have been blessed to be surrounded by wise souls who have been kind enough to share some of their knowledge with me. I’m very grateful and excited to have an opportunity to pay it all forward.
My complete FMS recovery details
Please enjoy and pass it along to anyone you know who could benefit or contribute!
Best Regards and welcome to Orange Grove Road.
Liz Graduated from Central Washington University with a degree in Family and Consumer Sciences. She opened a fitness studio where she worked as a personal trainer, helping clients achieve their fitness goals while developing a passion for holistic health. After having children, Liz became a full-time homemaker. She went on to complete all but a few classes toward a degree in Holistic Nutrition from Clayton College when they mysteriously shut down, leaving her unable to complete the degree. She now uses the knowledge gained, caring for her family and her little homestead, as holistically and sustainably as possible.