I apologize for my absence, but am thrilled to report that nothing bad or even minorly irritating is going on, just life, happening at a break - neck pace. Since you were last with me, we've traveled to our Nation's Capitol and to historic battlefields and to historic "haunted" bridges and back. We've experienced a difficult loss, it was jolting for me, but a shocking loss is much different for an adult to process than it is for a child. Jonah had that one moment in a person's life... the moment when your mortality becomes crystal clear. Unfortunately, this wasn't just the moment in time when he realized his mortality, but the person who died had an accident after having a seizure... so this was a terrifying "flash forward" for a 10 year old who has Epilepsy... and who's brothers have the disorder as well. In a moment, a million thoughts and fears entered his mind and, as you can imagine, it was not pretty. So we endured, made our way home (this happened at the hotel at the conference) and tried to move forward. There were no smiles on my sweet boy's face for many days. Then, last Sunday, that changed. Papa (Grandpa) called in to me, right after I had been outside working and came inside to take a break and whatever it was... I knew it was big and I needed to move (even if I felt like taking a nap!). I asked what it was - inevitably, it is something with an animal and I need to grab supplies before I leave the house. His response was beautiful, I knew instantly, and I did need to attend to the issue, but I needed to get the boys first... Jonah needed this. So I called for the boys, grabbed my goat vet kit and slipped on shoes and ran outside. For your benefit, this is the cleaned up version of what I found when I came outside (along with Jonah's first smile in nearly a week).
Aren't they wonderful? Isn't he wonderful? Isn't God's timing AMAZING? I wasn't expecting the babies until more than a week later, but God had other plans!
So, Spring on the farm is a life-affirming mixture of a whole lot of messiness... :) Baby animals, plants popping up, both old familiar perennials that we love to see return each year, just yesterday, the daffodils bloomed, the tulip leaves got taller, I found tiny mint plants sprouting up, wild onions are going wild, chives are starting to come up, rhubarb's curly green leaves are fresh and small, the small, spiky beginnings of horseradish, the strawberry patch (the constant Spring reminder that God provides) made it through the winter and the pointy leaves are enjoying basking in the sun as much as the barn cats, and an assortment of flowers are showing their green leaves at an alarming rate. I'm almost holding my breath... the thought of lilies (asiatic in all of their amazing splendor, daylilies in their simple beauty and lilies of the valley with their delicate small flowers), daisies, black eyed susans, columbine, irises and even my hosta garden... I eagerly await their arrival and know I won't be disappointed when they get here. So, in addition to all of the wonderful things that we've planted and come up every year, we have a garden to plan. As always, our garden takes on a life of it's own. The past three years have seen a certain child getting ill and needing to be in the hospital *right* at the time that the weather warms up and plants bolt... including weeds... so it has been a rough few years for gardening... this year... MUAHAHAHAHAHA.... I have a plan. No, really, I do. (You know that saying about the best laid plans... yeah... I have NO plan) I don't have a plan that will prevent illness, but I do have a new garden site picked out that is going to lend to our successes in the gardening realm. The boys and I discussed our plans, what we "need" to plant and the sustainability plan that we've been working toward. So, when the weather turns and we can plant outside... there's nothing holding us back.
This year's plans include selling produce (we've not figured it out if we are selling at a farmer's market or if we will sell from the farm, more thinking to do), building a chicken tractor so that we can keep more chickens and sell eggs, as well as give away eggs to friends and neighbors, increase the expected yield of the garden so we can decrease our dependence on grocery stores, as well as increase the amount of produce that we freeze and dehydrate. Since George had her babies, we are also excited that we can start milking again, which means not only fresh milk, but homemade yogurt and cheese as well.
Spring is an exciting time on the farm. We get to see God's creation first hand and it is such an amazing thing to realize that He made these things from nothing, and He made them with us in mind. I often wonder how Creation can possibly be denied. I look at a seed, one simple seed, and I see an eternity. God's provision for His people blows my mind. You plant ONE seed... you get not only something to feed your family, but you also get many, many more seeds to continue to bless your family and friends and community.
With that, for today, I leave you. Beautiful Sunday, My Friends.