New Agrarian Voices

Learn about the impressions and experiences of each year's cohort of apprentices in their own words.





Adison Thorp, APPRENTICE, Indreland Ranch

April 2023

A meaningful life. A small but powerful idea that myself and many others have been chasing after for most of their lifetime. For the majority of my life, I have held a curiosity for the land and the creatures living on it. Natural landscapes have always held space for me to question life’s obstacles, explore, and create new adventures. Today, spending time outside and actively restoring working landscapes while conserving wild places is what contributes to my meaningful life. 

Working as an apprentice I hope to explore how this lifestyle can contribute to my meaningful life by digging deeper into my passion and how it relates to the work done on the Indreland Ranch. I want to be doing work that allows me to be on the ground and in the soil. I want to be working closely with animals and practicing low stress livestock handling techniques. Where I can see the results of managing land regeneratively and what that means for long-term landscape health and fostering a better food system. I also hope to delve into the ranching lifestyle, creating deeper connections with the land, animals, and community around me. I aspire to be present. I hope that throughout this apprenticeship I can focus more on listening and observing my surroundings. Thankfully, from what I’ve experienced thus far, this lifestyle allows for the practice of presence and is in many ways already allowing me to explore what contributes to my meaningful life.

An important concept I’ve learned about land is its interconnectedness. Everything has a purpose and a place in the system. When it comes to personal wants and needs, I think this is a valuable lesson to consider. A balanced life to me, is a meaningful life. However, finding balance is hard, and in my struggle to find it these first couple weeks at the Indreland Ranch, my mentors shared with me an influential theory called the big rocks little rocks theory. This theory is about prioritizing your life. The big rocks signify the truly important things in your life and the little rocks signify other things that matter. Imagine filling a jar, if you were to only spend time on the small things you would not have enough space or time to focus on the big important things. When considering my meaningful life and how this apprenticeship fits into it, this theory is a valuable tool that I hope to use in creating a balanced life. 

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