Scratching Out a Living
April 1, 2012, 7:07 pm
Filed under: April 2012

Hens de-bugging the raspberry bed

                                                                     April 1, 2012

      The term scratching out a living takes on new meaning when you are a chicken. It seems we humans scratch each day to try to get ahead. We work at jobs we don’t like, for people we don’t know, just to give our money to people at the bank or gas station!

      Some folks are blessed enough to have their heart and hand working at what makes their spirit soar. Many of us find that elusive vocation too late in life. Some of us know that a wee voice has been giving us direction for our whole life, yet we failed to listen. I am in the last group. I know where my talent and joy lies, but I resist in order to try to make enough money to get out of debt.

      I can’t help but wonder if all my energy might have been better spent doing what I love. I think I could have made a living doing it. I am sure I could have made a life doing it. I am innovative, resourceful and hard-working. I am pretty sure I could have done it. I am now nearing retirement and hoping to spend my final life chapter working and enjoying what I should have been doing for a lifetime.

      Oh sure, I have been farming most of my life, but always as a sideline. I can only imagine what I could have done, had I applied myself in my youth. I can just imagine how much I could have accomplished in my twenties, thirties and forties. I chose to work off the farm, buying things to make it easy and then working longer to pay for those things. I guess it’s a vicious circle.

      Some will say that I wouldn’t have made it… I think I could have, but we shall never know. What is for sure, is that I am farming. I have made great strides in the hours that I have for it. I guess it shows the resourcefulness and hard work, not to mention that I love it.

      I have no regrets. I am successful in my own mind and I am the only one I have to please in this regard. When I measure myself against others, I feel that I can stand tall. I made a farm out of a brushy, over grown piece of ground. It is productive and now sustainable. I take a little pride in that.

      I have learned a lot while farming. I have trialed many things and gained a wealth of experiences. I have many things yet to try. I have much to share and a willingness to do just that. My farm stands as a testament to hard work and to the power in our memories. I have done many things because I remembered that was how one of my grandparents did it. I have proven that the old ways still work very well today.

      If you look past the scratching hens, you will see a new pasture shed. We built it last week. I used left over lumber and some re-cycled sheet metal. I bought a few more posts and a little bit of lumber. The whole building ended up costing less than $500.00. It is ten feet by twenty-four feet and will make a good winter barn for the sheep, while providing summer shade to a host of animals.

      Gardening season is nipping at my heels. Soon we will be planting seeds and tender plants that will feed us and our animal charges. We will be scratching out a living, tilling the soil…and be much better off because of it 😮



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