Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Jesus and Farm Chores

Well, I am needing me some lightness.  Something other than the stuff that keeps me up at night or the things that create in me a need to meditate, to write, to think or books with paragraphs that make my brain hurt, taking half an hour to digest one page or blogs that make me question my entire existence or things that cause me to search the pantry for sugar.  I ate Mambas the other day for crying out loud.  Twenty years, maybe?  I don’t know but a very long time.  A friend spied my book, “Severe Mercy” setting next to me and put her head in her hands, doubling over like someone had just punched her in the stomach.  “Are you reading that right now??”  Life seems heavy right now so allow me to infuse a little helium.

We started week number five of school yesterday.  After four days in Anson, planning out the school year, I said I would re-evaluate after a month.  When I thought through some things on Sunday, it took all of 2 seconds for me to conclude, one some issues, that “tweaking” was a wishful thought.  Tweaking just wasn’t going to cut it-- most “issues” were inbred personality traits that will take a lifetime to figure out.  All three of us.  But remember, I am clicking on the light side today.  On to the things that are going well.

Over the last several years, I have seen people move out of our city proper and onto a “piece of land”.  Contrary to what you might think, “piece” used in this context means large, not like a piece of chocolate.  It is acreage.  And in some cases it comes with pasture land, four legged things that need attention, creeks, barns, trails etc. We’ve seen some people acclimate perfectly and their families are thriving beautifully.   And we’ve seen some people run back to Fort Worth as fast as they could find a rental near the country club while waiting for their “piece" to sell.  Oh, I get it.  I’ve had those thoughts too.  I grew up in the country.  I know how amazing it could be for our children, our family.  I have lists in my head ~ the why’s and the why not’$.  There is something attractive about country living, down on the farm, back to nature sort of living.  The appeal to me, and I think to most, is more about my family and the hopes of experiences and memories we would have.  I don’t necessarily think about all the work.  All the driving.  All the “I know it’s far out” when I want to have people over.  All the work.  All I’d say “no" to “in town”.

I digress.  Again.  Helium.

So Jeff thinks about this idea, the vision that people have about this living on the land, doing the farm thing and comes up with the most brilliant idea of his lifetime~ and he’s had some doozies.  Good ones, but this one.....  “Farm Chores”.  I can’t even tell you how happy it makes me to type those two words.  Even my city boy understands the pull to the country.  He proposed the idea that even though we live five minutes from anything, that we do “farm chores” .  Oh, girl, just wait.  It’s really good.  No, we don‘t have chickens to feed, rambling porches to sweep, gardens to plant or cows to milk but we do have a dog to feed, a house to dust, a yard to mow and blow, and food to prepare.  

Here is what it looks like.  Every morning {Monday through Friday} after the kids walk Gabriel, we meet in the mudspace where our lists hang, do a little silly thing and crank up the music.  {See end of post after pictures.} I set the timer for thirty minutes and approximately two hours of work gets accomplished by all four of us working.  I told you it was good.  We do everything from typical house chores like dusting, emptying trash cans, cleaning bathrooms to food prep for dinner, grilling meat to freeze, honey-do tasks, cleaning outdoor furniture... and the list goes on as custom as you wish.   I do feel there is a “magic bullet”, though, for every thing you try and in this case, ours is Jeff.  He came up with it, he drives it and he participates.  His enthusiasm makes all the difference.

This summer, about a month in, I was looking around my house, like on a random Wednesday and was shocked that the system was actually working.  I even pulled back a curtain in the den to look at B’s windowsills.  No dead insects.  Hmm.  I texted Jeff, “Farm chores have changed my life.”  Jesus and farm chores.

Back to the music.  I am not a singer nor a musician of any kind, but I love music and in my non musical opinion, I think music makes EVERYTHING more fun.  From farm chores to road trips.  Every event needs a playlist-- a GOOD playlist.  For this, you’ve GOT to have fiddle music and songs that just make you happy.  So here are my favorites from our “Farm Chores” playlist.  

On My Way Back to the Old Home- The Bluegrass Band Album
Home Sweet Home- The Bluegrass Band Album
Do Everything- Steven Curtis Chapman
Good Mornin’ Life- Dean Martin
Another Day, Another Dollar- Wynn Stewart
Ain’t We Got Fun!- Renee Olstead
This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)- Natalie Cole
Rockin’ Robin- Bobby Day
Come Fly With Me- Michael Buble
We Are Family- Sister Sledge

My city boy holding his own


nikki said...

this is so inspiring!! love that you're making hard work so fun!!! and what in the world did your "city boy" hunt- it looks like 50 puppies!?!?

Alyssa said...

If your hired hands ever want a change of scenery, I've got a house that might need some tendin' to, and I think those farm chores could do the trick.