Sunday, January 29, 2012

a little snow

They are calling for snow tonight, a few inches, nothing drastic. I am looking forward to it with ferocious anticipation. Remember when I mentioned how restraint, scarcity, and hard work make all those simple comforts so much the more? Well, it goes for the entire farm as well. Tonight as the snow falls I can fall asleep knowing some amazing things. I have nearly refilled my freezer with wholesome meat and did right by the ends of two fine pigs. I filled the barn with 30 bales of green hay. I was delivered to this farm late in the day and as I climbed up into the bed of the large pickup, I realized it was easy for me to personally pick up and toss 30 fifty pound bales. I am not bragging here, but appreciating this hefty body of mine. I am always, always hard on myself about my looks and yet this vessel I have been given can do such labor, can run a farm. I may wish to wear a size 8 jean again, and will (mark my words), but tonight I am just so happy it is alive and able. I have arms and hands and legs and heart. It still beats, it still loves the world, and it still hopes. I don't care how fat, thin, young, or old you are: this is our gift tonight.

Jasper was seen to this morning by a farrier. The little firecracker was calm as a swaybacked drafthorse at the county fair. I met a new and grand farrier and soon as he left the trio of butchers arrived and I thought to myself, What must these men think of me? A women alone with working ponies, pigs to slaughter, and chickens running around like toddlers at a town park? Whatever they think, they are kind and keep it to themselves.

I brewed ten gallons of beer this weekend. Five with Kate on Friday night and five just now while typing the pork post. It is fermenting as we speak. Five of said gallons are a Coffee Stout Porter and another five are an English honey-brown ale. I am loving home brewing, so much. I love soaking the bag of grains in the nearly boiling water and then pouring in the malt, boiling it and adding hops. I love adding my honey at the end, an hour of boiling later and filling the house with bubbling. And I adore sharing those beers with friends, and letting folks know they too can carbonate and kick one back! As the video I watched said: if you can make mac-n-cheese out of a box, you can brew beer. Hell yeah.

So tonight the barn is loaded with hay, the animals are fed and content, Jasper has better feet, the pigs are on their way to being sausage, and ten gallons of magic is brewing in my kitchen. A pot of wool is soaking in the bathroom to clean. The dogs are fed and walked and the only thing left to do is unwind and call it a night. Snow comes, and as it comes I hope it purifies more than the chicken-poo covered ground. I hope it cleans up my head and my angry thoughts about my body or status. I am a lucky and clever little wolf, and I have a body to prove it. And it only gets better, long as that is my goal and belief.

I'm happy tonight. I hope you are, too.

12 Comments:

Blogger jeanbean said...

jenna,
well said...jeanbean

January 29, 2012 at 9:17 PM  
Blogger Helena said...

My SIL had a few bales of hay left over from a wedding they had in their yard (I think it was extra seating?), and it had been peed on so no good for feeding any critters, they offered it to us to use as mulch. I've gotta say, after moving just a few bales around our not-huge yard, I have new respect for your ability to move so much hay around on a daily basis! :)

January 29, 2012 at 10:57 PM  
Blogger Meagan said...

I hope you're considering doing a homebrew video for your collection - I'd probably gather the funds to buy it if you did!

January 30, 2012 at 12:02 AM  
Blogger mdoe37 said...

What are those men thinking to themselves?

Wow! Cool!!

Those aren't the sort of men whose head is turned by a high heel and short skirt. They go for real women. A woman who is strong, confident and doesn't whine about a ruined manicure.

January 30, 2012 at 5:01 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Jenna,Do you use a kit or a recipe of your own and gather your own ingredients for your home brews?

January 30, 2012 at 8:25 AM  
Blogger Misty said...

There was a time in my life when I was thin and "girly". But life has shaped me into a woman that is capable, resilient and durable. A friend of mine commented not too long ago that she wishes she was like me. I frowned and asked what she meant. She said, "You're not afraid to try things, to get your hands dirty. You can build things and do things that I only wish I could do." I told her she could, but as she's over 50 now, she probably will never change. My body may not be Vogue model shaped, but I challenge those skinny bags of bones to do the work that I do. I may have a little paunch, but I have muscles in places that matter. I think of that when I carry 80 lbs of water at a time or 100 lb bags of feed. Rock on, Sister!

January 30, 2012 at 10:25 AM  
Blogger Alice said...

Yay for homebrewing! I got a kit to make my first stout, and am excited to brew and drink in a few weeks. What other varieties have you made so far?

January 30, 2012 at 2:24 PM  
Blogger Alice said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

January 30, 2012 at 2:25 PM  
Blogger Christine said...

A contented life! Well done!

January 30, 2012 at 3:23 PM  
Blogger bree said...

It's nice to step back and realize when you are happy. It's important too. Thanks Jenna.

January 30, 2012 at 10:33 PM  
Blogger Jenny said...

this is so awesome, yeah for good feelings!

January 31, 2012 at 1:39 PM  
Blogger rabbit said...

Everyone has bad days/body image issues, but I like to remind myself when it comes to exercise/movement of any type: no matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everybody on the couch. :)

January 31, 2012 at 1:52 PM  

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