The day before we moved into the farmhouse, my oldest started high school. (She’s in the center, with two of her girlfriends who rode with us the first day, standing in front of our old house – the Victorian that was mostly looking for any and every excuse to be decorated with peacock feathers.)
My middle guy started 8th grade (I don’t have a first day of school pic, so this will have to suffice – he LOVES that ‘doodle.)
And a couple days after we bought the farmhouse, my littlest punkin started pre-k!!!!!
This fall, instead of seeing so sharply the moments that are behind me I have much more been focusing on the right now. And on the yet-to-be. Because seasons are meant to change. Good stuff is happening now, and you and I will have our yesterday-treasures tucked in our hearts forever, but we definitely don’t want to miss the things blossoming right in front of us today, because that stuff is beautiful.
Have I told you we have CORN!? This photo is of our very own actual corn. Now I have to say that harvesting a garden someone else planted is super-sweet. But I also think that the stuff we’ll labor over next year, when it takes root and sends up sprouts and bears fruit… that will be pretty super-sweet, too. Sometimes God just gives us a little breather, where we get to feast on corn someone else lovingly sowed. We’re having a breather-garden this year, friends. It’s a grace garden.
We’re continually finding little surprises here at the farmhouse. Our first weekend, we decided to clear the pond on Saturday.
Yes, down “yonder” is a pond. Past the scrub brush and alders that grew up. Yeah, I can’t see it, either. If you push your way through about 10 feet of that stuff, there is a precious pond. Precious! Just waiting to be found. So my handsome man putted down in the orange tractor, chainsaw in hand, and began cutting it all out. And I – farm girl extraordinaire – put on my inadequate-for-real-farm-work fuscia-lined black rain boots and helped haul those suckers up to be loaded. All. Day. Long.
It was awesome. Really, I’m not even joking. Getting out in the sun, working and being tired and grubby and mud-covered was just the right way to spend that day. We found frogs and even a salamander.
And two bridges.
Lucky for us about the pond, because on the following Monday afternoon my father-in-law came over with two pekin ducks, each in a banana box, head sticking out, to give as a pond-warming gift.
I will level with you. When we were told we would be given ducks, I thought, “Oh, ok… that’s cool.” But you guys… I cannot even do justice to how much FUN these 2 ducks are. Gideon and Lois bring so much humor and personality to the farmyard. They may be my favorite animals ever. And the weird thing is, when I watch them, I think about God. Yeah, I know that is kind of random. But I think about His humor and how He must smile like I do when they waddle so fast, in perfect sync, and how He designed them perfectly for all the duck-jobs they would have, like foraging for food in the grass and swimming. And I bet their little voices make Him smile, too.
I think about how God made creation for us to enjoy. Because He loves us.
And if having poultry puttering around in the yard reminds me of God’s love for me, you can bet I’m reminded all day long, because just up the hill from the duck pond, past the apple orchard and the vegetable garden…
… we have chickens. And the same day our banana boxes packed with ducks arrived, my husband received 4 chickens from a guy at his work. I drove them home in a dog crate in the back of my Expedition. It only reeked of chicken poo for like a week afterward. The kids were really good sports about it. They encouraged me each day that it didn’t smell quite so chicken-poop-ish as the day before. Bless them…
(Note to self: In the future, don’t transport farm animals in the back of the Expedition… use the old Jeep.)
Oh, yeah, and my father-in-law brought 2 chickens as well as two ducks. So we have a lot of feathers flying around here. And that’s cool. I used to love to decorate with peacock feathers, and now I hang out with poultry. It’s practically the same. Right? (wink, wink)
I’m very grateful for friends who are chicken chicks and have been so generous with telling me what I need to know to not-kill these adorable chickens. Some are blog-friends and some are in-person friends. I even had the pleasure of a private farm-related tutoring session yesterday with my friend Laurie. She has been building a pallet-palace of sorts, with amazing things taking shape from her creative use of pallets to form everything from coops to fencing. She’s at a way-more-advanced level of farm girl than I am.
(These are her sweet sheep and chickens)
I’m at the farm girl level where my husband has to tell me that bird food does not go IN the bird HOUSE, only in the feeders. And that I should definitely not have left a message yesterday, inquiring about ordering “four cord of lumber.” It’s firewood. Tomatoes, to-mah-toes… potatoes, po-tah-toes. My bad. (But I can just imagine getting a bill for 4 cord of 2×4′s…..)
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