When Things Change…the Daily Farm Adventures {55}

The Ladybug has been off at camp this week and it’s been just us and the boys. It’s made for an interesting change in the household dynamic, to say the least. {smile} We all miss her, but Speedracer really misses her.

boys on gate 2

Monday evening the boys and I rounded up and penned the sheep. Then a red pick up truck rolled into the driveway with a stock rack on the back. They loaded up a couple sheep and a couple chickens and drove away.

I may have cried. Just a little.

Selling lambs is hard enough, but it’s part of the cycle. Selling off adult animals is hard for me. They’ve been around for a while. I’ve feed them, watched them, maybe nursed them…I know them.

boys on gate 4

We’ve decided to make some changes around here. And honestly, I don’t know what that’s going to mean, or what it will look like over the next year. We just feel that God is leading us to make some changes and we’re taking it day by day.

To start with, we’re culling a little stricter and harvesting a little earlier this year. Our core flock is aging and there’s a difference between having a farm or homestead and having backyard pets. We want to be down to the proverbial best of the best by the start of the new school year.

boys on gate 1

We have a few new opportunities hovering off in the “still developing” stage and we’ve picked up several new egg customers this year–along with all those chickens! So we’ll be deciding whether we want to refresh with new breeding stock, or if we simply want to downsize for a time.

boys on gate 3

We also have the annual school issue hanging out there. We’ve been getting some help for the Ladybug’s academic challenges this summer, and her needs and what’s best for the boys has to come first with us. Another school change seems to be looming on the horizon.We have to balance commuting time vs time as a family vs social environment vs academic standards. Then we have to look at school work time vs farm work time vs recreation and down time. And, of course, there’s an actually cost associated with each and every option as well and we’re certainly not sitting here rolling in the greenbacks.

boys on gate 5

The picture is complex and right now it’s very fluid.

Right now the grass is growing. The lambs are growing. The chicks are growing. And it’s hot outside. The kiddos are visiting the library and seeing $1 movies and playing legos and gathering eggs. We’re filling water buckets and mowing fields and cleaning out the feed shed.

boys on gate 6

And trusting that when we need to know the next step, God will let us know.
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Don’t be fooled–this is not as easy here, inside these boots, as it sounds on this page!

Sometimes you just have to say it over and over to yourself until you believe it.

boys on gate 7

I’m learning to be flexible in my thinking these days. It’s ok to not know sometimes and it’s ok to change your mind. There’s a time to stay the course and there’s a time to change directions. Following the Lord is the most important thing.

But I have to admit, sometimes I think New Year’s resolutions are over done. By January all the big changes and hard choices are done for us! {smile} Our “New Year” is September/October. We’re definitely more about seasons and cycles around here than about calendars!

Do you have anything big on the horizon?

boots footer 2014


Just 54 Photos

camping 2014 b

I have taken 54 pictures of our summer so far. 54 photos since May 20th. This from a person who’s Flickr acct includes 46,654 images, since May 2010. Part of me finds this appalling! I LOVE taking pictures. I love paging through pictures of my crew and seeing their little faces–happy or not–and their moments…all the activities we’ve done together…all the growth and change around us as we’ve moved forward with this farming, homesteading life…those 46,654 pictures bring me so much joy! But I’ve been tired. Tired in the deep, quiet places. And my camera has stayed in the bag. … Continue Reading…

I Think Perhaps I Will Write Again

camping horizons 2

I think perhaps I will write again. I think perhaps I have words again. I think perhaps I have missed the weight of my camera in my hand. Perhaps it is a lie that a “smartphone” can meet all our needs in one neat little device. Perhaps there is a need for more than one lens. Perhaps there is a need for time, a need to find time, a need to slow down the moments and run our fingers through them as they flow by. Perhaps there is a need for a fresh start, and the world is given new … Continue Reading…

There Is a Price…the Daily Farm Adventures {54}

A Gone With the Wind sunset!

I can’t seem to get back everyday words after everything that’s happened the last couple weeks. After losing Grandma Koeller, and facing some lingering demons of my own, the end-of-the-school-year fervor and fuss (K5 graduations, spring concerts, field trips, sports tournaments, etc.) and then the transition to summer fun…it’s all just left me…tired. I have heavy thoughts and words that go with them, but little to offer about book lists or baking projects or summer picnics and popsicles. I find myself sitting in the truck in the driveway…looking over the fields and animals…and just wanting quiet. Just wanting time. And space. … Continue Reading…

More Than Happy…the Daily Farm Adventures {53}

ladybug 1

I think we might just erase the word “happy” from our vocabulary around here. There is biblical happiness in scripture, but our common vernacular has turned the word into something else entirely. Socially we’ve elevated the word into a philosophy of life. We want happiness. We crave happiness. We chase happiness. We’re trying to find our happiness. We reject things simply because they do not bring happiness–including marriages, loved ones, careers, and fiscal responsibility. Culturally, we are pursing happiness right off the side of a cliff! If you search Pinterest, you’ll see thousands of quotes about happiness–and all of them … Continue Reading…

Kids and Chores…Making Routines {and Why We Don’t Switch Chores Very Often}

Making Chore Routines...and Why We Don't Switch Chores Very Often #kidsandchores {via www.walkinginhighcotton.net} With examples of how to make your own chore routines

I started this series as a way to dive into some of the frequently asked questions when it comes to our crew and chores. I started by talking about exactly what we do and do not consider chores–what is meaningful work, rather than just busy work. Today I’d like to share a bit about how we use routines around here (as opposed to schedules or charts) for chore assignments and some thoughts on why we don’t change it up more often. To begin with, there’s lots of cute “chore charts” out there. Cute ideas for magnet boards, popsicle sticks, clothes pins, … Continue Reading…

Repair or Rebuild…the Daily Farm Adventures {52}

Moving our first batch of chicks into the chicken tractor @ The Lowe Farm www.walkinginhighcotton.net

Well, I suppose I’m back to our daily life again, so I’m back to putting words in this space again. I may usually hate change, but it is occasionally soothing to know that time continues to flow. That the seasons continue to cycle. That change can bring renewal as well as destruction. That dead trees come back to life each spring. That new lambs are born each year. That no matter how far you travel from home, the mosquitoes will be waiting when you get back. There is a fresh perspective that comes only from missing the daily grind which … Continue Reading…