The greatest joys have always come through the struggles and pain. This doing what I do even when I do not immediately feel like doing it becomes what my heart has been aching for. The nagging started as a call I was unable to take, but slowly became what I was unwilling to do. The busyness of the last couple of years was a walking through of what the world had served us into what God had called us to. It’s been difficult, painful and we’ve learned more than we could have ever imagined.
This slow, intentional move has always been part of our plan. We would work towards full time farming and then step into a life that allowed me to be the wife, mother, friend, farmer and community worker I yearn to be. To find balance. Even when we were without sleep and stressed there were words spoken about this time-hope.
To have been given the vision and handed everything without all of the work would have surely left us with much more pride, idleness and extravagance than anyone ought to have. So I sit here at this kitchen table, and walk the fields, sit and listen (really listen) to my kids, read good books and pray-thankful for what I’ve been through and realistic of where I am. Learning to be who I want to be.
Part of the experience of the slow, intentional move is to go without internet and excess. We realize that there are several options that would give us internet at the new place (and will likely choose one once we’re officially moved in) but until then we are going to enjoy the quiet, the space, one another on the days we’re at the “new farm”. We’ll also be taking our 100 Crates
over just as they are needed or when we find the right space for something that has usefulness or meaning. Our goal is a home full of special things with enough room for special times.
On our first night at the farm we ate berries-lots of berries. My favorite way to eat summer berries is right out of the bowl. There is something simple and sweet about enjoying them with good conversation after a savory meal. No dessert is required. Our time on the farm has reminded me of the simplest food preparation and the space it allows for other things.
Tips for fresh blueberries from Kitchen Wisdom:
-There are about 3 1/2 cups of blueberries in 1 pound
-never wash the berries before storing them in the fridge.
-Well-chilled berries are less likely to become mush after being washed.
-Berries are highly crushable. Only store them in shallow containers.
As we closed up the farm to head back home I thought about the extended family that had lived in that space over the years. There’s a photo from early to mid 1800’s that shows at least 2-3 families sharing this space. I’ve thought a lot about how life was once about surviving rather than acquiring. We were once connected in deep, meaningful ways that is hard to find when all of your needs are met. As we’ve transitioned to a lifestyle that was once about a better education, the next higher paying job and newer car to a life where our work becomes who we are we’ve learned so much. Most of all I’ve learned that opportunities to have our most basic needs met are more meaningful than ever-it’s where community is found. Thinking about the reasons why kids grow up to find something safe (any education at whatever price, any career, more stuff) makes me think about what I can do for my children so they are willing to take all the risks necessary to follow their hearts and make a difference for those around them. As we leave the farm for a few days I whisper to my son, “You’ve got big things to do in life, do not be afraid. Be ready to travel where you need to go and do what you need to do. No matter where you go in life you will always have a home and food on the table here.” He smiles.