Sunday, July 18, 2010

Well life on the farm is kinda laid back...

...and by kinda, I mean really hardly at all. It is hard work! I know, because I visited one this week, and I want to give you a peek into what I saw. Well, really WHO I saw.

This post is a continuation of my last post, where I promised that I would introduce you to someone who has gone to great lengths to help her family learn to find pleasure in simple things. A year ago my friend Peggy and her husband packed up their home in our suburb, sold their house and much of what they had, and bought a farm about an hour away.

Not so that they could earn a living selling farm goods, but so that they could live a better balanced life with carefully placed priorities.

There were a number of reasons they sensed that this was best for their family, but the bottom line was that they knew it was what God was calling and equipping them to do.

We have been to visit twice. Once in the late winter, and this week. I think the kids got as excited for our trip down there this week as they get about Christmas! They love spending time with Peggy's kids, and they also adore the animals.

When we visited in the winter, Peggy showed us around, and shared her vision of what would be planted where when spring came.

There would be a vegetable garden,

an herb garden,

a corn field

and a berry patch.

There would be chicken for eggs and chicken for meat. And some other animals who were out to pasture and haven't yet been informed of their purpose. Shhh.

Oh my goodness, the stuff they have had to learn! Did you know there are designer bean plants?

And that they produce designer beans? Whoa!
(Apparently the seed company throws in a few surprises with your order.)

Did you know that if you don't have any more spaces with good soil for planting potatoes in a bed, you can go vertical by filling tires with dirt and growing them there? Me neither.

In her spare time Peggy grinds her own flour for bread, makes soap, cans, and seldom has to go to the grocery store. Think of what her kids are learning as they help her! Oh yeah, did I mention she home schools? She is awesome at it.

Peggy's family hasn't removed all entertainment or modern conveniences from their world. They seek out frequent interaction in church and community activities. They still deal with juggling schedules, and I'm sure Peggy wouldn't tell you that her kids have become magically content. But they are certainly learning the value of hard work, and their expectations of "going someplace fun" everyday have been replaced with chasing kittens and climbing big trees. They love it.

Peggy is the kind of person who makes me feel like no less of a mom for making choices that I make. She knows they have really taken a leap of faith, and she is willing for this experiment to fail. They know they are where God wants them but would never consider their lifestyle superior to mine.

Even so, it makes me wonder, am I willing to do whatever it takes to help my kids grow up without a sense of entitlement that promises to make them discontented?

Thanks so much for opening your home to us, Peggy. The kids were thoroughly entertained with farm work and play. Not that we came to be entertained. Thank you for challenging my commitment to Christ, sometimes through your words, but always through your deeds.


Joy said...

What a resourceful woman. I would love to spend a day with her too.
Looks like all the kids had so much fun together. I imagine that Ben and Bethany asked at least once if they could take home a kitten....hhhmmm am I right.
Love all her animals and that chicken coop is the best.
I want one.
Thanks for sharing Peggy and her beautiful family and life with us.
♥ Joy

Betty said...

What an inspirational woman! Wow! She sure is taking on a lot.
What did Ben and Bethany think of that kind of lifestyle? Were they glad to go home, or would they like to stay? :)

Tiffany said...

I agree that "laid back farm life" that everyone desires is always far from laid back!

Thanks for sharing Peggy and her family with us! I wish I did more on my own farm - one step at a time, they say, right?

Skeller said...

ah! it looks like a good, good life.

Melissa B. said...

My in-laws (both sides) come from Wisconsin farm families. My Dad was raised on a ranch in Texas. Too much work for me. Love your Superior Snaps, though!

StitchinByTheLake said...

Sometimes the books we read make farm life look romantic without making it real. It's hard work, never-ending work, but the simplicity of it will certainly enrich the lives of that family! blessings, marlene

Life with Kaishon said...

Wow. That is just amazing. Farming is a hard way to live. Hard but wonderful. My Daddy was raised on a farm and it is in his blood. If I was very, very wealthy I would buy him one. Around here you need to be very, very wealthy to be a farmer because land is so expensive!

Good for her! Glad she is happy and doing what she feels God has called her too!