Last year was my first spring on the farm. It happened so fast. Brown and cold of winter turned into warm and green almost overnight. And then WHAM! Everything went out of control so quickly we never caught up. Ever.
I love winter, I do. The cold, the snow, the ice, the fires, the soup, the sweaters.
“Mustache” = “must ask” haha.
I’d like to introduce you to my new cat. Isn’t he stunning?
Well, maybe not “new.” I mean, I’ve had him for a month now.
Do you want to know how soft his fur is? Well, I don’t have any idea; I haven’t been able to touch him. He is wild.
I attended another farming conference this past weekend. The morning was a lecture and the afternoon was a workshop. It was fabulous.
Here’s my favorite photo from the workshop. This embodies the spirit of the farming community to me. Everyone working together. Many hands make light the work.
This farming conference was filled with “groovy” people just like the last one I attended. I love that vibe. I had no idea that farmers were such a “hip” group of people. (note to self: become hipper) But they are. They dress hip; they talk hip.
You know that photo of yourself?
The one that is goofy and hilarious and you hope nobody ever sees?
And then you see your daughter showing it to her friends because it is so very rip-roaring funny?
Or maybe somebody else posted it and tagged you on facebook and you think–oh no! all those people I haven’t seen in 20 years are seeing this–and quick! you untag yourself.
You know the one?
How exactly does a person LEARN to farm? I guess what I really mean is how do you LEARN to make a comfortable living at it?
Owning a farm and knowing how to make a living on a farm are two entirely different things. Most people I have met since we moved to the countryside have an off-farm day job and farming is their second job. Actually, I think everybody I’ve met fits that bill, part-time farmers, full-time something else.
Now that I have a farm of my own, I’m trying to learn how to farm AND trying to figure out how to make a living on these beautiful acres. I should add: I happen to be completely untrained and uneducated in farming. So far I’ve “trained” by talking to people who have farmed and by reading books about it.
This weekend, though, I did something else. I went to a farming conference.
You know a post that has ”Turn, Turn, Turn” in the title is surely about there being a season to everything, a time to live, a time to die. You’re right on that.
It is a stark, unfortunate truth, there is a season for everything.
Yes, death is a part of the circle of life. And sure, I can sing that song too. (“from the day we arrive on the planet…”)
But knowing the words to the songs doesn’t mean that I can deal with it. And being able to quote Alfred Lord Tennyson’s “‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all” doesn’t make it so.
I am faced with the “turn, turn, turn/circle of life/loved and lost” concept much more frequently since I moved to a farm. And, quite frankly, I don’t like it. I’m not so happy about that part of farming. (I keep saying that I should just stick with turnip farming.)
You have heard me talk about one of the sweetest, most friendly chickens ever hatched, our Sicilian Buttercup we called TyGee. She was the tiniest in the flock. She was also the most loving in the flock. She’d rather be held by me or my daughter than to eat.
She was sick last week. I did my best to nurse her back to health, but I failed. Epic failure.
“I can never remember
whether it snowed for six days and six nights when I was twelve
whether it snowed for twelve days and twelve nights when I was six.”
Blue running in the snow
2013 was my first calendar year living on a farm. Whew!
I ended the year feeling rather overwhelmed. Both my husband and I lost friends at the end of the year and it put us in a contemplative mood. (another way to say “in a funk”)
Man, we’ve got so far to go…
And then I started looking back at the photographs I took this past year.
And that made me realize that
Man, we’ve come so far…
Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone and we have all rested up from the big feasts
(Blue and Tom)
it’s time to think about Christmas! And Christmas Trees!
Oh, but just to update you, I’m eating a big ole turkey sandwich right now.
Yep, there was turkey on the Thanksgiving Day table. Hubs insisted.
And next thing you know, I’m serving myself a slice of white turkey breast and some home-made gravy.
And. It. Was.
Real good. So good that I’m having a sandwich of leftovers.
(note to self: never raise turkeys. never raise turkeys. never raise turkeys.)
A declaration was made in my house by my daughter: no turkey for Thanksgiving dinner. Dag-nab-bit. She has become such a poultry lover since we moved to the farm and got baby chicks. Little fluffy, precious, peep-y baby chicks. So what shall we have for a main dish? That remains to be seen. She recommended that we make a tofu dish and shape it like a turkey.