Monday, July 14, 2014

Workin' Hard

If you’re farming, you’re workin’ hard.

If you’re homeschooling, you’re workin’ hard.

If you’re starting a new business, you’re workin’ hard.

If you’re building a house from the ground up, you’re workin’ hard.

If you’re starting a new life in a new place, you’re workin’ hard.

If you’re doing all of these at the same time…you’re probably just a little bit crazy…or completely desperate. At least, I think that was (is) true in our case.

Seventeen years ago, as we finally sat down to eat that slightly cold "supper" from Tastee-Freeze after racing to beat a thunderstorm across the county to spend our first night in our newly finished home, we thought we knew about workin’ hard.  The Boss had just finished working side by side with the builders for four months to get us to that point.  We had a garden going.  The barn site was leveled out and construction was soon to start.

But, that would just prove to be the beginning of our workin' hard.

Over the years, this place has changed dramatically.  All those changes are a direct result of our very own efforts.  ...and I'm more than a little proud of that. For many years, we worked hard as a family unit (kids worked right along with us, learning as they helped).  Looking around today, it’s hard to imagine that this was once an empty field.

That was then...

This is now.

Not a week goes by that someone doesn’t tell us “wow…you work so hard!” …and I’m often inclined to agree with them (particularly at the end of the Market on a very busy week).

...and I have the photos to prove it.  Over the years we have...

hauled countless bales of hay

processed tons of vegetables
in all kinds of weather

all kinds of jobs
You might see us
trimming trees off the fenceline

harvesting 'taters

doctoring lambs
(with "help" of course)

little helper-daughters in potato garden '98

planting 2/3 mile of potatoes - 99

getting transplants ready for garden

harvesting garlic

canning tomatoes '98

processing broilers - 99

picking, picking, picking
In addition to all the other jobs, the Boss is in charge of
repair work


Life on a farm requires a lot of hard work. Life on a small farm requires that a lot of that hard work be done by hand. And, you don’t just do this work once and you’re done with it.  Much of our work has to be done again and again and again.  I mean, animals have to eat and those vegetables don’t pick themselves! This may seem like drudgery and monotony to a lot of folks, but personally, I like the sense of purpose and the rhythm of the season and the challenge of making a living from this little piece of land.
I never tire of the sight of all those beautiful vegetables

the "fruits of our labor"

Today’s chores are calling, so sitting here contemplating our past hard work is not an option.  It’s time to get cracking on today's to-do list.
Not sure what her complaint is...

Here’s to another seventeen years of workin' hard!

our version of "American Gothic"



  1. You really should be justly proud of all the effort and hard work you have both put in over the years - but how very satisfying it must have been, particularly now, when you can look back at those early photographs and actually see what progress has been made.

  2. Happy 17th Farmowniversary!
    PS: How are the two sick lambs doing?

    1. Thanks, Maureen!
      The bigger of the lambs seems to be back to normal. The smaller lamb (the smallest in the flock) is still kind of punk. She looks a little better, but is not interested in eating, particularly grain. And, that's not good. They eat grain like little kids eat M&Ms. I gave her some probiotics to stimulate her appetite and a mineral drench. We'll see how she is in the morning. I may end up giving her some vitamin injections, but that means a trip to the farm store...and that's not happening tonight. I keep expecting for her to keel over.
      Although, after her afternoon treatment, I did see her nibble on some grass. So, maybe...
      Thanks for your concern!

    2. I'll pray for your little lamb tonight. Please let me know how she fares.

  3. Happy farm anniversary! Your blog is very inspirational for aspiring farmers, and I love that you two have done this for so many years as a team. Cheers!

    1. Thanks, Caitlin!
      Every day proves to be a new learning experience. It is so cool to think that we could be of help and/or inspiration to someone. :)