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Scattered Lives & Common Ground

January 15, 2013

Many folks think that those on farms focus only on “farm stuff” and it is true when you live when you work that it can be all encompassing. But there’s down time in the long hours, and much common ground with those who live in more urban areas. The details may be different, but many in agriculture like art, literature, food and classic cars. We all love our kids, have special pets endeared to us and have an eye towards making the most of our money. These are things that, bottom line, we have in common.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe’re imperfect, make mistakes and pay for them. We worry about getting sick because we can’t afford a day off, and if the people who have promised to pay don’t we don’t have an alternative but to make do in many cases. In the back of my mind it’s ‘programmed’ to pay attention to many, many things that don’t appear on the surface. So it was with interest I picked up a study guide “Living Above Worry and Stress” – part of a Women of Faith series, found at the local Dollar General. (I also picked up another one, “Managing Your Moods” – be honest don’t we all deal with these things?!) We manage these things or they manage us!

We have an unusual arrangement here, partly from necessity and partly from convenience. The home maintenance is shared in a much bigger way. Any of the 3 of us will jump up and make meals, although honestly it’s often Scoutman or Connor (learning!). Sweeping floors, taking trash out, feeding the dogs, “poo patrol” if needed falls to Connor. Scoutman does the ‘breadwinning’ and home repairs. Connor and I handle chores for the most part, and I’ve been consumed with planning breedings, schedules, social media promotion, marketing. Much like how to eat an elephant, it’s one bite at a time, do as much as we can, prioritize where need be and make the most of what we can.

These things cover our past (up to now), present and future also. How we got to where we are, day to day now and preparation to move forward. These things have fallen to me, on various fronts. I do the Facebook page, blog, Twitter and website maintenance. Coming up with new things, finding ways to reach customers, running ads are regularly renewed tasks. The photography done of animals, gardens and such falls to me. I know the pedigrees and backgrounds of the rabbits for several generations. These are things that I can’t designate. I also, ultimately, must make sure all animals are fed and watered, insuring that Connor doesn’t miss someone. I make sure we have feed, and until we get a truck must make sure there’s enough feed and bedding, groceries and household supplies needed. It doesn’t leave much time for church projects, although I managed to start the church Facebook page, and Connor is active at monthly food giveaways.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFunds have been tight for holidays, but we get inventive. Birthdays are low key, but we try to do things throughout the year. Sometimes it’s related, like going to the Chicken and Egg Festival, a lunch in town or occasional movie. There’s times in the evening I might be updating on Facebook but also sharing in family time with a meal on the stove and banter going on between us. The family ‘chaos’ is multitasking to get everything done. And still it makes for short days sometimes and when something goes wrong it is a mad scramble to plug leaks.

That family time is precious – it’s hard when it’s raining, but when it’s nice out grilling by the fire can cover multiple things. There’s good natured bantering and teasing, laughter, a few arguments here and there. Normal life right?! It’s a worry sometimes if a payment comes in how will we cover feed, and stock up on groceries because it may be a few tight weeks ahead.

It can be a worry, but is a very big part of our future. They provide a basis for food and income providing meats to sell for our customers. It’s why down time and re-centering, maintaining balance is so important. And yes, that means the Bible, as well as time to regroup and revive. And everyone needs that.

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