Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Back at farm life

It's harder than I remembered; and the reward is not always immediately gratifying.

I took a week off from farming, going straight for 3 months without more than a night or two away for a small camping adventure. It was good. There were not a lot of planned activities and a lot of it was just sitting around, sometimes talking, sometimes playing my guitar, occasionally playing a game of cards with my siblings. I was able to go running several times that week, I think that kept my body more in the routine of vigorous working that it was use to and it helped simulate being at work. It's been a while since I just sat around and didn't do much. There are pros and cons, two sides to every coin. It can lead to greater laziness (I'm not saying merely lying around is lazy, but can lead to a slothful mindset if not careful), or can lead to greater productivity. I believe God wants us to rest, He doesn't want us to be workaholics, slaves to our labor. He certainly enjoys when we work hard and put our mind and strength to work in which he created, but we must have room for rest. Sometimes that's hard for me; especially when I have trouble getting back into work from rest I wonder to myself "was that really worth it?"

I'm that guy who at the beginning of a week of vacation, thinks about how in one week it will all be over and then I try to savor every moment remembering how fast it will all go by. I enjoy pondering about things, the way life is, how fast time slips by. It's all very intriguing to me.

I guess I shouldn't have expected anything different. A week with your family and you remember how much fun you all have together, it's only natural to want more of that. You start questioning your commitment to work. I've committed at this point to working pretty much straight from February to November, without more than maybe a week off in March for my sister's wedding. My brain would have me question the motive for that, maybe that's too much work. Am I moving too fast? Trying to take on too much? I am that guy who will try to take on more responsibility than is wise, I have to remember that about myself. I tend towards taking on more work than is healthy.

Sometimes I even second guess my wanting to farm. Is this really where my soul is? It's hard work, and it is a lot of commitment. Like any home business it requires a dedication and drive to do it, often forgoing vacations or extravagance. Is this what I want? I remember the good times, when you harvest the first tomato, pluck the first few leaves of basil in June. After a hard days work coming back to a meal cooked mostly of fresh grown garden produce or home raised meat accompanied with a home brewed craft beer. It's also the community. Sharing stories of related gardening tactics or new methods of soil production; a local source of non-gmo grain for feeding chickens. Or going to the farmers market and seeing again just how many dedicated people there are doing what you're doing and living the dirty life.

So here I am, back at farming. I've got 12 more weeks of vegetable CSA, and I'm just getting into raising broilers for meat. I've got half a dozen projects I need to complete for different areas of the farm. I've also got to work on my tiny house so that I can finally have my own space to cook, live, sleep and just be. I need the drive that will empower me to work hard and long hours. I also need the wisdom to know what jobs need to be priority. Which days I need to be doing what. The dirty life of farming. I'm here, I may as well make the most of it.

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