Sunday, March 2, 2014

Living in the moment...a bunch of bullshit

I am living in the moment. It is the "in" thing to say if you are a new age, organic, homesteadie, semi spiritual person. As if some how we have successfully high jacked cultural buddhism for a long enough period of time, that we now get to claim that phrase as our own.
Bullshit. That phrase is for lost people. People raising kids and farming we know dam straight that there are only two moments to live in. It is impossible to live in any other moment. The two moments are: 1.) my kiddo needs me right now, and 2.) I don't need you right now but I will shortly. That is it.
As for the farm there are also two moments 1.) I need to work, and 2.) I need to rest.  Thats it. It is the construct for which our life is framed, without any more searching or heady self reflection. The process for accepting this is your life is short, deliberate,  and above all necessary.
That is the news from the Symphony, where all the notes are harmonies, the fiddles are tuned and the fingers are calloused.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

We bought the farm...and it is still sinking in

It has been a long struggle to get where we are. Much like climbing mountains, and focusing on each and every step. Applying more focus, effort, and concentration when the steps are agonizing, painful and defeating.  Keeping your head straight when all you want to do is give up because it is never going to happen.
And like climbing mountains, when you start to reach the peak, the world has dropped away from you, your goal in sight, and the struggle melts away into an elated feeling of no longer craving a summit. Whilst standing on the summit, there is a balance of believing there is nothing left to achieve, and appreciating where you are.
     We bought the farm. The long journey of working for other farmers, leasing head aches, praying on your knees for god to give you strength to get up and keep doing what you are doing; that is over. A like reaching the summit, achieving that goal there is a balance appreciating what you have accomplished, and setting another goal. To keep going.
     We bought the farm. We can plant anywhere we want, build buildings, paint walls, tear out lights, put up new ones. In all honesty the goal we have reached is demanding us to make new goals, steps and accomplishments. In mountaineering there is a concept of a false peak. You see what appears to the precipice of accomplishment, and when you reach it, you can see clearly how far you actually have to go. It can be the most deflating experience. Buying the farm may be our false peak. Our true peak is five, ten, twenty years down the road. What a magnificent sight it will be.

Monday, February 18, 2013

What I hope farming has taught me about having kids.





Meg is pregnant. Which means in popular terms that I am pregnant too. The catch phrase is "we are pregnant" We use it all the time. And people give us their unsolicited  advice as to "How it its going to be."  We generally keep our mouth shut and accept the fact that humans want to help each other but have a generally misguided way of doing so.

In my head as a farmer I often think "how it has been". I hope that some of the spiritual, mental, and emotional seasoning from farming,  will carry over and cushion the landing of having a baby in our arms in May. I am writing this with a good chance that I will re read this post, and look back and laugh! I guess anyway you cut it, it makes for good reading.

So here we go, What I hope farming has taught me

1.) It is twenty four hours a day 7 days a week, 365 days a year, strong, weak happy or sad, sick or healthy- you will do it until the day you die. There is no day off, there are hardly any special days, it is just the way it is. It took forever to accept this one and make peace with it.

2.) Never challenge God to a duel. I did that once- screaming at the sky in the middle of the night in rage " Bring it on". God can bring it like you would not believe, and he never gets tired. God brought it for 10 years straight. God dropped my on my knees praying Hail Mary's and I didn't know I was Catholic.

3.) Do the work cheerfully when you can. It is always there, it will always need to be done, you are the chosen person to do it. There will be grumpy days.

4.) Moments in Heaven are usually juxtaposed with moments in Hell. The minuet you watch a magical sunset will be the same night you clean diarrhea out of your own bed.

5.) Plan. Only because you know all too well they will change. Shit will only go down on the days you have to be somewhere.

6.) "Some days you will run the farm, and some days the farm will run you." Insert child in place of farm to make this lesson carry over.

7.) "If I could farm half as well as I know how, I will be one hell of a farmer." Insert parent in the place of farmer to make this lesson carry over.

8.) Never take a pregnant cat in a Cattle deal, where a calf has to ride home in the cab of the truck. I don't know what that has to do with parenting it just seems like good advice from experience.

9.) If you let the shit pile up, you will be working your ass off when you want to be out in the sun. Piled up shit is smelly, its hard to shovel, and you curse yourself every time you let it pile up, saying to yourself "you know better!" Bottom line?  You will have to shovel the shit, today tomorrow or the next day. It really doesn't matter. It will be the same job, on any of those days,  it will just be what you chose it to be.

10) Rest on Sundays. Work with your partner.  Give each other  time off . Graciously take what your partner has given you. Eat. Sleep when you can. 3:30am is a fucked up time of day. Coffee makes it better. Love will get you up every morning. Love is the only thing strong enough to keep you going.

-From Popa Falby to Baby Falby