Sunday, March 27, 2011

For dinner tonight, i had a bowl of microwave popcorn and a big glass of red wine. The kind that makes you want to stick your nose waaay in to the glass and breathe it in to your soul. My pup is curled up at my feet and I'm watching Eat, Pray, Love. I adored the book when I read it a few years ago -- it was a life changer! -- and now I'm watching the movie and thinking.....


Thinking about my life's big adventures. Aventuras!

There was a time when I truly believed that I would travel the world. Learn languages. Backpack across Europe. Write in San Miguel. I thought I would wake up to church bells through open windows and the smell of street vendors. Amazing art & architecture, amazing food & music. An exciting, adventurous life.

And I have had SUCH an adventurous life. I've loved many men. Exotic and exciting men who've taught me their language and their food. Who've given me pleasure and children and stories to tell. I've packed up and moved across the country to start again...or maybe to START, period. I've birthed children fed them from my body and watched them grow in to adults and have children of their own. I've done things that make others cringe and laugh and whisper. And I have no regrets. Not one.

"I've been a miner for a heart of gold. And I'm getting old."

There are so many things that I meant to do that I have not yet done and it's almost too late. La Aventura se esta' acabando.

Meanwhile, back at the farm.....

I stuck some seed in dirt. Beans, kale, spinach, squash. Cilantro & basil. Some of my seeds were outside through the winter so they may not be viable. We'll see.

Friday, March 25, 2011

5 Years and Holding...

Today is our 5 year anniversary! Who'd have thought in 5 years our lives would change do much? Don't get me wrong, I have absolutely no regrets. But if you'd asked me 5 years ago where I thought I'd be today, my answer would NOT have included the words "organic farming".

I'm feeling better about things today than I have been. Today, I feel pretty sure that we are going to continue down this path and create a life that really works for us. I still have moments of terror when I realize that we are solidly below the poverty line. Then I ask myself whether I would be willing to do what I would need to do to change that, and the answer is ... no way, man.

Meanwhile, back on the farm....
I need to get to planting! Just need to figure out what's going where. Bill has one indoor plot and two outdoor plots at the farm that he can grow for personal use. Indoor, he's going to do tomatoes ... lots and lots of tomatoes...with hopes of making tons of tomato sauce to can* to get us through the winter. He'll also have cilantro, onion & jalapenos (a salsa garden) so we should have some nice salsa canned as well.

So I'll definitely do kale again, and I'd like to find some Lombardi Spinach. I tasted some at the farm and it was amazing. Realizing they know what they're doing more than I do, mine might not be quite as awesome, but at least edible. Tomatillos were a hit and I can make as much salsa verde as I have tomatillos. Also taking a shot at more mushrooms.

*I bought stuff for canning last year but I didn't really have enough of anything to can so it's still sitting in my kitchen, taunting me. I did freeze quite a bit though. A month or so ago, I pulled out some sweet corn that I'd frozen and MAN was it like a little visit to summer time!
And just for fun, here's a pic of my silly puppies...who are going to LOVE the farm life as much as any of us!

MSU Student Farm

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Who Knew?

Seems like a year - to the date - is long enough to go without updating a blog, huh? And so much has happened! Updates - at a glance:

- Both Bill and I have left Corporate America. I left voluntarily in June, 2010 so that I could focus on our family and to see if I could, in fact, make it as an "independent". I can ;) Bill lost his job in February, 2011 and decided that instead of looking for another office job, he'd fulfill his lifelong dream to spend his days in the sunshine with his hands in the dirt. March 1st (5 days after losing his job) he began the Organic Farming Training Program at Michigan State University. I've never seen him happier. He's also living in Lansing during the week since it was costing > $100 a week in gas for him to drive back and forth. We're in week 3 and, though I've had a few freak-out spells, we are making it;

- We now have 2 80# German Shepherds in our home. Ezra came in July, 2010 as a 9 wk old pup. Maxx came in February, 2011 as a rescue. Since I work from home, they are with me almost 24/7 (except when I'm at client sites). I've always wanted to own a dog but a few things stood in my way: 1) I'm kind of scared of small animals. Weird, huh? I'm not afraid of horses, cows, animals at the zoo, etc. The smaller they are, the more they scare me. And don't even ASK about fowl. Shudder; 2) I've always worked full time and it didn't make sense to have a dog just to leave him at home all day alone; 3) I didn't really know anything about how to train or socialize a dog. So, I'm working all that out now in my typical "baptism by fire" manner;

- Kim & MJ moved back to Memphis in November, 2010. I miss them every single day.

- Finances? Don't even ask. Our household income is something like 80% less than it was and we will likely never be back at the earning level we were when I started this blog. We will need to move from our house at some point and we have NO idea where we'll end up living. We've committed to staying in this area until the girls finish high school, though. Bill wants to own a farm, maybe in the UP. Who knows? I'm trying to lean in to the ambiguity and look at this as a growth experience for myself. Some days it's easier than others.

All in all, the changes are good. The family is more stable & less chaotic than it has been in years. I am having fun with the work I'm doing and spending my time & energy according to my values. We are eating better, getting more sunshine and exercise than ever before (though I've dropped that ball SERIOUSLY over the winter). I've been broke before and it's not that big of a deal. We will not starve and we will not be homeless. All is well.