and even though we wouldn’t mind some real snow now and then, the fact that we still have enough lettuce (no promises it will still be there after tonight!) to have a beautiful salad cinches the fact. It has been a good winter so far.
I’ve not been around these parts much lately, it seems. It’s not that I haven’t thought about keeping up with my days in this space, it’s just that the reality of keeping up with myself and my family and my farm is taking about all I’ve got right now. And that’s ok with me. Each day spills over the edges. Fullness finds a whole new meaning.
Plus, the kids spilled very-sticky-heavy-on-the-maple-syrup-lemonade on the computer’s keyboard which made typing a frustrating joke because several characters just stopped working altogether. Oh, well. This just gave me yet another excuse for limited computer time and has actually been sort of a gift in its own right! I might have dragged my feet just a bit in getting a replacement keyboard…
In a nutshell, this past month has been full of sweet gifts that have left me feeling incredibly blessed and like one very lucky lady. In mid-August, when Eric was gone for nine days to drive his papa to Pennsylvania and I was solo on the farm with three kids, a bunk leg, and pregnant belly, my amazing neighbors helped with chores, watched the kids, untangled lambs from fences, and didn’t judge me when I voiced that I really needed a beer.
My other equally amazing neighbors and farm cohorts, Jesse and Hannah, volunteered (!) to do our CSA delivery and market in Nashville the Saturday Eric was away so that I could attend Robin’s indigo dyeing workshop (that would have otherwise been impossible for me to participate in). I don’t think I can even begin to describe just how huge that gift was!
Then my sweet Eric returned safely from his trip.
Then it was my birthday and I had a day of not cooking or doing dishes.
Then my fiber fanatical friends gathered together for our first ever bonified stitch n’ bitch and Coree baked me a cake.
Then, a posse of dear friends gathered here in Bugtussle to shower my family with love and food and baby gifts and blessings for this new little life that will be joining my family so very soon. I am all set on diapers now! And the older kids in attendance stayed over and had a camp out down by the creek, cooking freshly caught chubs and air potatoes over an open fire (and then raiding the kitchen for snacks when they thought I wasn’t looking)!
Those are just a few of the bigger gifts that have blessed me as of late. Then there have been countless in-between moments that present themselves as truly wonderful gifts, too… The moments that awareness and recognition come to me in a flood and leave me in awe of this beautiful life.
Like the gift of curious little hands feeling my belly as the baby wiggles about. Then the gaping mouths and laughter.
Or the dry leaves showering down as the season turns toward autumn. Ground crispy and dry. Warm sunshine, but not stinging hot.
The gift of seeing my family glistening in the late afternoon light as they splash in the creek, reviving after a group effort firewood pick up. Inspired by the promise of marshmallows over a bonfire to repay all of their hard work.
Or gorgeous jeweled sweet potatoes being lifted from the earth. Warmth and sustenance for the winter. Especially in this year where the pantry shelves are mostly bare… but, yet, there is still so much bounty.
i have already mentioned our new saturday routine here. these days off have been so rich, so full, so free, so decidedly awesome, i feel compelled to write about it again!
i guess what i am trying to say is as a commercial vegetable grower there is a whole bunch of things that are completely abandoned during the growing season. you would expect knitting and reading to be on that list, but honestly, so is house cleaning. add also superfluous culinary activities. add again non urgent laundry. are you getting the picture? in our new era, the one where farmer paul and i alternate market weeks, i am finding these tiny windows of time every other saturday to do one or more of said activities and my home and family are so much better for it.
i am an extrovert by nature and it was a challenge for me to let go of my weekly super intense social time. admittedly, once i allowed change to enter i immediately noticed every other week is enough. running the market stand solo is socially saturating and i get full blown uninterrupted micro chats since i am not also juggling my entirely too active, over tired toddler.
these days remain unique and unphotographed. why? logistically, currently my only tool to document is the family ipad which is also our point of sales device. said technology is with my mate on these saturdays at the farmers market. i can only offer a mental glimpse of change. if you arrived at the farm and entered our homestead you might just notice the house is a tiny bit cleaner, the piles just a smidgen smaller, my family slightly less stressed and me wondering why on earth it took me 16 years to figure this one out.