The farm is staying busy even though the cold has come in to the deep south.
The cold always surprises me for some reason. I know it's coming and yet when that first frosted morning arrives I'm always thinking, "wow, that was quick".
My body longing for the heat.
We added a little girl named Willow to our farm. She is being raised with the cow and the pigs, chickens and rabbits and the kids. She is such a beautiful little gift and I love seeing her as she is preparing to stand guard over this farm. Work in progress mind you, but aren't we all?
Rosebud is doing well. She is lonely most days since we lost Sammy and so we spend lots of time with her. She likes being next to the pigs so we stake her out and let her spend her hours soaking up the aroma of her brothers/sisters. We have finally felt the 'farm life is not easy' on a whole new level. Spending 7 hours out in the cold trying to save Sammy from bloat, the vet didn't give us much hope.
We kept fighting though and yet we still lost him. The next day we wanted to sell the farm and move into a nice comfortable home in suburbia. Its was hard...bodies ached from the hours of cold but we dragged through the day after and each day became brighter with the realization that our other animals needed us. So you just keep on..gurarded a little more, but keep on moving.
We work together as well as grieve together so when it's feed buying day everyone grabs a bag and takes it to the shed. I love seeing them work. They don't complain about the job. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because I'm out there with them. Maybe it's because their whole life has been about this place. This time. Them together doing work. Doing what needs to be done and believe me, there is always some kind of work. I truly believe a common goal planted early in their mind is part of it.
They really don't know any difference. You just get up and start working. If you complain it's really silly because everyone around you is working..We didn't always have this mindset. When the two oldest were young we watched a lot of tv and I found out that getting things done was easier if I just did it while they were asleep. I didn't expect them to do anything so when Taylor turned 5 and I was convinced I had ruined her we made some changes. We never looked back. We realized at that point that giving our children the easy life was going to make it harder on them in the real world.
So many can't even get kids to take out the trash much less put in a 5-6 hour work day mucking out stalls, cutting wings, breading rabbits, keeping up a winter green house, hanging clothes out when your hands freeze from the dampness, making bread and trying your hand at soap, teaching little ones to read and older ones how to get along in this world. It all takes effort and time and seems to me most people have neither these days.
I laugh because I've lost more than a cow in my lifetime.
I've learned that your world crashes hard and fast in a blink of an eye
and the busyness is not worth one minute of time unless you're around
the people you love. Nothing I could do outside of this house is more important than being focused and intentional with my mothering.
I pile books high around my bed and read to them and have them read to me.
I braid hair and pray for them as I feel their little frames relax at my touch.
I dress baby dolls
and make their favorite meals
and watch a little 3 year old roll out dough every single night
at 5.30 for "her rolls". She slowly takes dough and rolls out about 30 little
dough balls. It relaxes her and she knows when it's time when she smells
food coming from the kitchen.
I'm tired and just like you my time is valuable but I have seen what
time can do. Their legs grow long. The time for leaving short.
I press on
I take pictures to remember the time here.
I teach lessons
I teach them not to mind the work.
The work makes the rest better.
I remember my birthright. I will not take it for granted nor will I sell it for a cup of soup. I will let it sink in to my very soul and remind my children of the responsibility of their birthrights. We were chosen to live when so many die. I will not grow weary and least I do, it won't be for long because I have too much to teach and too much to learn.
Thank you for this post Robin. We, too, live on a hobby farm and are learning the joy of work and of raising animals to fill the freezer. We are learning to be thankful for work and thankful for each other. Thanks for your perspective, once again. I really enjoy reading your blog.
I so very much enjoy your thoughts.
We have always taught our children to work. Whether we lived in the suburbs . . . or on the farm (we had a small blueberry farm) . . . or in a small country town surrounded by farms . . . our children have worked.
They have all worked on the farm and in the yard. They have all cleaned toilets and cooked dinner. They have all washed and folded clothes. We are a TEAM, and every part of the team is needed in order for our family to be the very best it can be.
Our 3 older teens worked part time jobs at a Dairy Farm, in addition to working on our Blueberry Farm. Our next 5 teens have all worked full-time in the summers at the local Raspberry Farms.
Our teens are known around town as hard-working-kids. They get calls from strangers, if anyone needs a helping hand. They babysit. They do yard work. They help people move. They just plain know how to work.
And . . . they have thanked us. As they grew up and left home, they have seen how lazy much of their generation is. They have thanked us for teaching them how to work. They have thanked us for requiring them to work. Yes. They have thanked us.
Blessings to you and your hard-working crew!
mama of 12 (ages 10, 11, 12, 14, 16, 19, 22, 23, 23, 25, 27, 28)
Beautiful post & such a wonderful reminder of our blessings! I'm much like you & we work a whole lot as well ~ but you know it's really good for us & I love, love, love milking my cow.
I'm so sorry about your calf loss ~ We lost one to bloat out of our first lot of calves back when we were new to this farming business. We'd spent hours tending to him as well & it was so, so sad. (((Hugs)) to you all.
This is wonderful, just wonderful. I know I need to adjust things again. I've fallen into that just do it all thing while everyone else is gone and then I know I'm cheating us all. Thanks for reminding me there is a lot of joy in working and playing together.
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