Spinning, Knitting, Crocheting, Organic Gardening, Living off-grid, and chasing sheep - because- I'm, like, NOT SANE!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Turn off the fan and get in the tub....

I've read so many good blogs with sentimental anniversaries, deep and insightful anniversaries, and ones so funny you spit on yourself. This entry should teach you, once and for all, that I am not so good at living up to expectations of any sort since you have to be someone SANE to be goal oriented or just plain talented in which case you should know that I still, sometimes, put my shoes on the wrong feet. To be perfectly honest, and I'm neither but this is my time to stand on the table and sing so I can surely pretend, the last two weeks have just sucked. Okay, okay, the cosmic outlook has been bleak for us all. And, yes, some are muddling through with more eloquence and CLASS than others (does this woman rock or what?). But they are not here writing this blog.

I'm not entirely sure I'm here, either. There has been the usual 'blue' winter and there has been some celebration. There has also been great discord. There have been people (who are not normally the people who do this) feeling so down they just have to cry and there have been those so shocked by it that they have had to flee or just try to look real busy. There was, then, hostility. She kinda liked it here so I invited her to stay...we are natural buddies. Also, it seemed patently clear that none of the real people in my house are going to stop the world long enough for me to catch up so I might as well make up some people to say, "hey, how are YOU?". It turns out - I didn't really have to do that because I grew tired of making paper dolls a few times and logged onto the computer to (thanks so much!) find, always, a few notes saying nice things to me. Hmmm. Kinda made me look back on the last year and see just why I started the blog, then.

I've been thinking alot, lately, about where I'm going with the farm, the wool, and the lifestyle - which I feel has really taken a back-seat to the whole fibery farm-witch pursuit. There is much talk about down-sizing. There was a faint shout of quitting altogether. That passionate and hostile rationale would have been mine. I think I found a more reasonable solution much later and will be cutting back to just what I can handle on my own. It is just getting too frustrating to have to follow the hubster around all weekend bitching because we haven’t done shots or hooves or hay, etc. Also, I’ve been working so hard I barely have any time to knit or spin anything for myself. Between making most of the THINGS presents last xmas, charity thingies, and birthdays, I have precious little time to do what started out as an art for me to stay sane with and has become another job. I’m slightly pleased with myself that I believed I could live off-grid, home school three intelligent and hungry to know all kids, grown my own food, make most of our food and other things from scratch, and physically have the stamina to care for 20 sheep. Well, there were only 14 but lambing season really makes your numbers change in a ridiculously frightful way. I had no idea I was an optimist to the infinite degree. Truth be told, there was more going on than that. Hubster was proud of me, and that is all too rare. He was also considering working from home so we could enjoy our homestead - that excited me so much that I felt compelled to work super freaking hard. It has been a dream of mine for a long time and I jumped on it like a dog on a bone. I think it may just be that - MY dream. Still, I feel really good about my choices. I mean, I don’t really want to have A LOT of animals. A LOT means that they become a number, not a friend. Sorry if I’m confusing you but, you know, we eat our friends so I felt obligated to clarify that we don’t eat humans. And even though raising an animal and then ending its life is always difficult, it is also an experience of sincere gratitude and appreciation. Farming, to me, in the commercial agribusiness sense, isn’t so much about that. I don’t want to farm in the large scale sense, I want to have a relationship with my land, my friends, and my family. So, a handful of sheep is good for me. I just know I can’t raise them like a herd. I take the hard stuff too hard and that gets heavy real quick.

Yet, I have to copy LeeAnn on the missing hubster predicament. These two weeks have been gutt-wrenching for me. There is a great more deal vulnerability in being a stay-home mom or dad than I think most people realize. I know we’re lucky, but we’re also doing things the hard way because we really feel it is the best thing for our kiddles. I think I go in ebbs and flows of being comfortable in my choices and confident that the aforementioned tasks I tackle every day are, indeed, an awesome exploitation of ‘employment’ as a term or concept. Yet, the idea of cutting back on my 'real' job and taking on the farm as my own, again, is kinda scary. For one thing, I have found it much easier to convince those lovely twirps who say, “oh, you stay home, how cute.” that I am a saint for not killing people just for kicks and that I ALSO have a real job - I sell and process wool. It is much harder to get the appreciation of being a ’real’ women when you are growing food for your table, raising animals and kids (boy, do they sometimes entertwine and seem startlingly similar), hauling water, and living like Ma on a bad hair day. That just isn’t as easy or eloquent to expound upon. It might be less of a horror flick if I felt that someone was standing beside me but I looked for him everywhere and all I saw was his dashing shadow. What’s even worse is that when I have caught him, it was plainly obvious that he preferred the ‘avoid the problem till it shuts up or fall asleep’ approach. Hmmm...I don't like this.

What? A prompting word 'like' just reminded me, "farm-witch, you are writing a blog entry, here, arent' you?" And that brings me to this, that final paragraph wherein I thank you for the great freaks of nature and kindly but violently devoted to fiber folks friends I have met here. I’m supposed to ask you what you like and don’t about the blog. What you want more of - more farm? More knit? More peeks into the reasons why it is a sheer miracle that I still wipe my own mouth? Or, should I just grab another box of crayons, a few sheets of posterboard, and disappear into my room to make my village?