“What do I do for a living? I live for a living.” – Peter Karena, This Way of Life
One of the many tasks underway as we get prepared for an exciting (possibly overly ambitious new year) has been properly archiving the thousands upon thousands of photos currently clogging up my computer. Moments documented lovingly, albeit sporadically over the past four years of our relationship with each other, our many animals and this journey toward farming.
Along the way, I stumbled across the photos of our first eggs, first cow we milked (and Scott would later help to slaughter, his first time), first goat to capture our hearts (RIP Pickles), first homemade “no machines involved” bread.
First wood chopped.
First animals lost to predators.
First. So, so many firsts.
Part of taking photos, writing this blog, taking the time to connect with each other about all of these firsts is to make sure we don’t lose that spark of excitement, appreciation, even boastfulness about these accomplishments.
Tonight, we made our first batch of yogurt from our goats milk (after many, many many failed batches). It’s so easy to overlook these wins. To forget how fantastic it feels to accomplish these mini acts of rebellion against the life we once knew and led, not knowing just how restless it would make us over time.
I look at how our relationship with our chickens has changed over time. Admittedly, we are overrun with roosters that should have been dispatched three weeks ago, but still. We have too many hens. We’ve lost that relationship with our favourite girls. I barely talk to Stella anymore and it had been ages since Peanut had sat on Scott’s shoulder before this photo.
As we navigate how much more we want of somethings (while scaling back considerably in other areas that are only adding clutter to our minds, hearts and home) we need to make sure we keep celebrating the small moments of victory.
The happiness that comes out of living this life day in and day out. Otherwise the sadness, the frustration and challenges will threaten this love we have for farming. For being self sufficient, or at least a little more self sufficient today than we were yesterday.
Taking it all in. Not taking it for granted.
And possibly not having as many chickens.