Friday, December 23, 2016

Mending Shirts

I was in the pig’s pen digging the snout-height electric wires out of the fresh snow. The sun was out for few blessed minutes and it made the farm sparkle. As the pigs snuffled at their feed (and spilled their water for the 20th time that hour) I took a moment to in the view. God the place was gorgeous. Not perfect, and certainly not magazine-cover material, but gorgeous. Feeling invigorated by the Vitamin D and optimism, I got up too fast and heard RRRrrriiiiiiipppp. It was my shirt. The sleeve of my (new this year) red flannel had a gash in it the size of a toddler’s fist. Oh well. I had needle and thread inside and it wasn’t a chink in the armor bad enough to bother changing out of.

It’s been a mix of highs and lows at this farm all week. The holidays are tough. I still haven’t managed to get the plumbing fixed and won’t until I make a mortgage payment. As much as I want flushing toilets and drainage I need to cover that first. I am gaining ground a little each day but things like dental bills and emergency visits to the Urgent Care really were a sieve in this month’s income. Not the most uplifting of news but the truth.

As rough as things are here, I have enjoyed the nesting that is candles and a wood stove and Christmas lights. In the evening this place turns into a Hobbit Yuletide Special. I have been knitting (or mending shirts) and watching childhood favorites like Beauty and the Beast and Muppet Family Christmas. I don’t have the tolerance right now for hard-hitting drama or injustice in Documentaries. It’ll be December before I check out Black Mirror, for sure. Maybe it is how much darkness there is in the cold months, but to know that home is this warm and glowing place of comfort has been a balm.

Hunting with the hawk has been exceptionally good! She is unstoppable. The last time we went out rabbit hunting she caught 2 and dove five times! We were granted permission to hunt on the back fields of Common Sense Farm that has generations of established warrens of cottontails. It is a North East Falconer’s Dream! I have been letting her eat her fill of whatever she kills but am going to start teaching her to trade off. This means when she kills something I cover it with a tarp or cloth and hold out something tasty in my hand - like a piece of dark meat already boned and unfunny. Shell hop off her game and take the easy meal and quick as a whippet I take the game and slide it into my bag. That is how we can take another head of game in one hunt. She has the drive for it!

The animals here seem okay in the cold. I haven’t ridden Merlin in ages. I miss it. The dogs have become my tireless friends and follow me all over the house looking for biscuits or scratches, wanting to go outside and run in the snow. They put up with many hours of me sitting in front of the computer designing or illustrating. The irony that I left a desk job to farm and can’t farm because of desk work - it isn’t lost on me. But that’s okay. I am honored to work on the projects I am given, and grateful to be close to my own fire. There is far more to be grateful for than not.


Blogger sash said...

I honestly do not know where my next paycheck is coming from, but yes, there are things far worse right now than that. And so we pray for those even less fortunate than we feel right now, and we celebrate Christmas with a little twinkle, still. Merry Christmas!

December 23, 2016 at 7:33 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Sigh - the mortgage is a big deal this time of year for almost everyone. Some years are easier than others. Your ceiling looks like it is tin, I love it.

December 24, 2016 at 6:19 AM  
Blogger Hannah said...

Outsmarted 20 times by pigs?

December 24, 2016 at 3:14 PM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

No, just a writer using the tool of exaggeration for a joke. Happy Holdidays!

December 24, 2016 at 3:34 PM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...


December 24, 2016 at 3:34 PM  
Blogger Hannah said...


December 24, 2016 at 3:50 PM  
Blogger Jenna Woginrich said...

Aw, Bless your heart

December 24, 2016 at 3:59 PM  
Blogger Holly said...

Yep, times are tough for us all.

December 24, 2016 at 7:30 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Black Mirror may have something you want, but at the very least give season 1 episode 1 a pass. It will give you nightmares. And the mind that thought it up is still loose in the world somewhere. Lock up tight!

December 31, 2016 at 3:05 PM  

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