I’ve been homesteading full time for just over one month now and I am having some troubles adapting to my wonderful new life!
Early in my career I wore a suit and tie and my morning shower and shave have been the same routine for the past 20 years. Until recently I didn’t even think I could grow a beard and now people are frequently asking me if I have “Amish heritage.” When asked about being Amish or someone jokes about me building them wooden furniture, I smile and nod, but secretly, I’m thinking it wouldn’t be a terrible way to live!
I am not sure how many of you reading this have made radical life changes, but for me it has been quite interesting settling in to this change. My day starts with morning chores. Those chores can be done in yesterdays dirty shorts or in my pajamas, depending on the weather and my mood. I suck down a cup of coffee and out the door I go. Milk the cow, feed and water all the animals and move animals to fresh pasture. By 9:00 I have all the animals set and ready to go for the day and my stomach is ready for a hearty breakfast.
By this time, Angela is frying up something delicious and the children are working on their “morning tasks of joy”, which is my favorite new phrase for chores! On a side note, today we had our first harvest of fresh potatoes to go with our home grown eggs and a side of fermented sauerkraut from last years cabbages. If you want to get over a case of the Mondays or any other mood issues, just have an amazing meal produced directly from your own land and happiness will consume you…
Now back to the story at hand, you know, my smelly breath. As I was saying, after I finish my breakfast I am eager to jump into the days project, and also beat the heat of the day. So I get right back out there and build a fence, weed the garden, make another pastured poultry pen, clean the barn, cut down trees or whatever other project might have risen to the top of the list for that day. Now comes lunch, another trip to “earths gym” and before I know it, it’s time to wrap up for the day.
That’s when it hits me. Doggonit, I forgot to brush my teeth again! I look at my fingernails and dirt is jammed under them, I look at my legs and the multi flora rose has cut them up and some how I think, praise God!
Praise God that I have the opportunity to grow my own food. Praise God that I have a wife who not only supports this decision, but also has dirty nails and sweat dripping down her brow. Praise God our children get to learn these age old traditions that have been lost on recent generations. Praise God for this life that we have chosen. When people ask me how I do all this, I am happy to tell them how good I feel now. I have more energy at 40 than I did at 25. Using energy creates new energy in my experience.
Now I just need to dial in on my schedule. I am having fun hitting the dirt, but if I am to make a career out of this, I need to work on my time management early. Keeping up with office time and basics like brushing my teeth need to become a priority. However, when the weather is right and the soil is loose, you can find me out playing in the dirt. So you will have to excuse me if I don’t answer the I phone or I am late sending that weekly email, because this fella was made to play in the dirt.
Don’t worry though. When friends are coming to visit or I am heading off to church a quick scrub of the teeth and swipe of deodorant are still in the agenda… for now at least!!