Tuesday, June 21, 2016

A Letter to Friends

Writing a blog is a bit odd. I always question how much info I should really share. I end up being a little vague sometimes (and probably rightfully so) and people get to read about little events on our farm, but one thing I miss is the feeling of simply writing a letter to a friend.

I've had a few in-life friends mention my blog to me lately and I think I'll compose this entry a little differently.  I have about an hour and a half to spend on lunch today at my job so we'll see how this goes.

Being real isn't always easy. There is so much bullshit in the world, the worst of which is the stuff you tell yourself. I fall in to the trap of wanting others to think certain thoughts of me or see me in certain ways and I find myself tweaking reality to make sure that they do. That's b.s. isn't it?

So for the next few minutes here I'm going to try not to worry about how this post may sound and what you may think of me. You will think what you will. I am going to tell you how things truly are and I hope you will do the same with me.

I am sometimes truly happy and joyful in my current life. When the first strawberry blushes pink and I know I weeded my heart out to get that first strawberry, I am grateful to God and say silent prayers for continued energy to put in to the farm what we need to get out of it. It's simple math really.

I am sometimes truly confounded by life. I don't know how to handle farmgirl, horticulture girl, control freak girl and the worst one: PMS girl. Whoa doggy, some days are pretty rough (ruff?). I try to make myself go out and weed, because weeding makes everything better, trust me, but I sometimes end up throwing myself a big wailing pity party and don't really want to be involved in life. At these times, I am overwhelmed with what we are trying to do but there is no room for this really. And that's the blessing. A busy life, at least for me, means I don't have time to be self-absorbed. I don't have time to examine my feelings (which honestly are often complete b.s. anyway, we are not our feelings) and I don't have time to be hurt.  And the miracle of all this is the less time I give these things, the less control they have over me and gradually, by flicking away negative thoughts and manipulative feelings, I find myself resurfacing as someone who, while shackled to farm life, is in love with her prison because I've never been so free.

When the breeze blows at the farm and our wind chimes sing, a feeling of peace comes over me because we are learning this land and it is becoming a part of us just as surely as we are becoming a part of it.

So there it is, a letter to you, friends about how I am really and truly.  I am good. Some days I am so good and some days I am not so good. And that's life. 'Happy' is a destination and life is a journey. I am not going to be content with arriving at the destination 'happy' or I will chase every little impulse that makes me feel good. Oh there is so much more, so much more. Freedom is letting go of destinations and simply enjoying the journey and I am, my friends, I most definitely am.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

When Life Gives You Lamb's Quarters......

The aftermath of hand weeding lamb's quarters out of spinach
We've nearly done it. We've nearly completed all 40 of our 20ft. long raised beds for veggies. We keep plugging away at it, one foot in front of the other. This fall is going to be fantabulous. We hope.  First, we need to keep on top of the weeding. I mean, holy Toledo! That's one of the drawbacks with organic but even if you weren't organic, you can't exactly spray dead your spinach so weed around it by hand you must!

The tasty beast

Our spinach was doing well for a time. The lamb's quarters were tiny and Fearless said to herself: "I'll just wait 'til they're a little bigger so they're easier to pull out".  Ha!  Big mistake. That 'little bigger' didn't happen. Instead, gigantically bigger choking out the spinach, lettuce and escarole DID happen. So yes, get our your tweezers and pull those buggers when they're small y'all.  I admit yesterday afternoon I was feeling a bit disheartened. But feelings are kind of ridiculous sometimes.

And then the silver lining.

Lots, and lots of it
I had heard that lamb's quarters were edible and good but had yet to try them. Last night I made some greens and beans with them and loved, I mean, loved more than spinach loved them. So guess what? Yup, the spinach is out and the lamb's quarters is IN. Rather than look at the spindly spinach in despair, this morning I went out with scissors and a tub full of clean water, whacked off as much lamb's quarters as I could stuff in the tub, wilted in and processed it and we now have about 7 pints of canned, delectable, tender yummy lamb's quarters. I am no weeding around the lamb's quarters and looking forward to a second flush of growth. I will likely be able to can even more and our failure at weeding the spinach bed will turn in to a whopping success at eating the weeds. God does provide, if we but see it.
Wilting prior to canning