Always? Usually? Sometimes? Never?

My wife asked a friend (who has 7 children of her own) how she gets it all done.  The friend replied, “I don’t”.  How great is that?

People ask me all the time how I get it all done around the farm.  I don’t.

As I write, it is 10 at night.  I stopped in Jerseyville on my way home from work to pick up a few hundred pounds of ingredients we use to grind chicken feed.  As soon as I got home I unloaded the van and we all piled in to head to church.  Once home, I closed up the layers, checked on the chicks and poults in the brooder, moved a fence to surround the outdoor brooder (first use this season) and ground 500 pounds of feed.  I’m eating supper as I write this.  There are dishes to wash, laundry to put away, books I have put off and a blog I have neglected.

“Gosh, it must be nice to be so young and energetic.  BTW, how old are you?”  35…a bicentennial baby.  Not as young as I used to be but stronger than I have ever been.  It’s just that everything hurts now…where nothing hurt before.  Not always…just sometimes.

And if you think I work hard, you should see my wife!  I sit for 12 hours every day either driving or chained to my keyboard.  She makes more than 1000 animals happy every morning before breakfast, babysits the cows all day, home schools the kids, cooks excellent meals, gathers the eggs and makes this all possible.

So is the work around here usually, sometimes or never finished?  It’s never finished.  Our top priority is keeping our family functional.  Next, we have a lot of animals to entertain.  Somewhere after that come dishes, laundry and hot spots (flat surfaces that seem to attract clutter).

I need to make sure I never walk in the door after my long day of pushing buttons and show my disappointment that the dishes aren’t washed.  I need to love, encourage and even sacrifice myself for her.  Usually I do a fair job of it.  Sometimes I screw up.

It isn’t always like this.  It’s not even usually like this.  It’s just sometimes like this.  We run a seasonal farm.  Right now everything has to be done at once.  Soon the chickens will be gone and we will begin canning our garden produce.  We’ll put up hay through the summer.  In the fall we’ll pick some apples, can pie filling, press cider and can applesauce…maybe can some pears too.  In the winter we catch up on our reading and cut wood.  But throughout the year we make time to swim…like today.  We make time to play catch.  We make time to go see the Avengers (can’t wait!)  We make time to watch Dr. Who.  We remember to enjoy our lives, not just our work.

We always have plenty to do.  The work is usually there waiting for us.  We sometimes get to do nothing.  A double-negative is never not funny.

2 thoughts on “Always? Usually? Sometimes? Never?

  1. Wow, I feel exhausted just reading this…but I’m in a similar state these days. I really cling to the idea that it’s just the season. I try not to think about how much better I coped a decade ago, or in my life pre-kids. It’s not helpful. Like you I try to keep family as the central priority, and deal with everything else as best I can. I chant the Serenity Prayer as my mantra some days. I think it helps. I’m new to your blog, but finding it fascinating.

    • Thanks Dawn. I work hard to be honest. We have a lot of fun on the farm. We work hard too. Embrace the season.

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