It Runs In Families
June 4, 2018, 5:39 am
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June 4, 2018

In her grandpa’s shadow, my granddaughter sniffs the flowers. She is smart enough to stop and “smell the roses”. I have the good fortune of seeing the effects of my leadership in my children and grandchildren. Some like the farm and animals. Some like the woodlands and protecting it. There are hunters and fishermen and horse lovers alike. It is awesome to see your children enjoying things such as keeping backyard chickens or making maple syrup.

It struck me funny watching Finley sniff the flowers, after I had just posted about taking time out for such things. The little ones are more in tune to what matters. They will play with kittens or pet the dog. They will lay on the grass and look up at the clouds. They will nap when they are tired. It is neat to notice such things, now that my eyes have been opened again.

It is very easy to get so busy making a living that we forget to make a life. I am an advocate for hard work and its benefits. I see now however, making a little time for the “little things” is absolutely necessary! It brings balance to a happy life. It sets a great example for those watching your every move. Lastly, it can make smiles last a lifetime and beyond.

Stop and Smell the Flowers
May 28, 2016, 1:21 pm
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May 28, 2016

Life gets so busy that we all get caught up in stress and worry. I just spent three and a half days pushing hard to get my corn planted. In that time the flowers around the farm started blooming. The lilacs smell awesome. The columbine like in the photo are a beautiful delicate flower and I almost missed them! I paused yesterday for a glass of iced tea and conversation with my wife. That little break was a great lift to my spirit.

I listened to my wife talk as she shared some concerns with me. We made plans. We talked about the pesky robin nested above our heads on the patio. I would shoo her away, but she is feeding four little babies. Once the chicks fly away, I will dismantle the nest and clean the mess. Until then I will watch the busy momma feed her little ones and dodge the bird poo.

The multi-flora rose bushes around the farm are starting to blossom. They have the sweetest smell. It fills the air and almost makes you appreciate this invasive, nasty, thorny plant. I sniff the breeze and relax, but I am making plans to hack away at that doggone multi-flora rose scattered around. It was once the latest , greatest thing for farmers. The government said it was, “Horse high and hog tight. Best living fence in the world.” Now whole farms are a thorny thicket thanks to this monster plant.

Oh well, I work at the problem plant here on our farm, but I confess, I do enjoy those spring blooms!

It’s The Day For It
April 30, 2015, 2:51 pm
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All Tuckered Out

All Tuckered Out

April 30, 2015

After a late night in the oat field, I am a bit lazy today. I have done my chores and a few extra things, but I can’t seem to talk myself into any big projects. It’s a bit cool, with passing showers mixed into the day. Twice I dragged a few tools out, only to have the rain start again. I said, the heck with it and gave myself permission to just do nothing 😮

There is plenty to do and tomorrow is another day as they say. So, I will rest and let my mind wander through my thoughts. I work much better with a clear mind and a rested body. I don’t work like I once did, but I’m not used up yet!

Forced to Stop
May 20, 2014, 6:57 pm
Filed under: May 2014 | Tags: , , , , ,

Ashtabula Harbor

Ashtabula Harbor

May 20, 2014

Recently, I was in Ashtabula and heading for home. As I drove down Bridge Street, I was forced to stop by the lift bridge. The bridge raises to let tall boats go underneath as they traverse the channel.

I was in a bit of a hurry and probably even cursed a little. The bridge does not hurry. It goes up and down in a slow easy fashion. I sat in my truck and watched the giant bridge go up in the air. It was very quiet.

I began to look around. I began to relax. The large coal transport conveyor loomed in the background. A freighter made its way up the coal slip. The water was smooth and peaceful. An iron fence stood at the edge of a nice , neat little park.

People sat on chairs visiting around little tables placed on the sidewalk outside of nearby businesses. I could hear laughter. The grass in the small park was recently mowed, green and balanced the whole scene. As a sailboat made its way under the lifted bridge, I smiled at myself.

The whole delay lasted less than ten minutes. I had no choice but to stop, held captive by the hulking bridge. It was because of the delay that I got to see the Harbor in its new glory. Many buildings , the park and even the bridge itself, have been given a facelift in recent years… I finally got the time to see and enjoy it!

I will surely go back. I will pick a quiet, sunny morning…take my wife and go just sit, listen and enjoy. It is the small things that make life grand…I don’t take enough time out for such things beyond the perimeter of my farm.

I want to include more quiet, simple, free things into my life. That bridge forced me to stop and look around…much better a bridge than an illness or disorder to cause me to stop… My hat is off to the folks who have turned the Ashtabula Harbor around…and Kudos to me for once again finding the silver lining!

A sailboat passes under the lift bridge

A sailboat passes under the lift bridge

The Benefit of a Good Outlet
April 10, 2014, 9:10 pm
Filed under: April 2014 | Tags: , , , , , ,
Clear water from our drainage tile

Clear water from our drainage tile

April 10,2014

The importance of a good outlet can not be overstated. Of course it is important for farm tiles and culverts, but a good place to drain the stress of life is awesome! I like to think that I have several, but when it all comes down to it…there is just one place. That place is here on my farm.

Sometimes it is the woods where my problems are sorted and drained away. Other times it is under the shade of the porch where the stresses of the day melt away. Usually, I am talking to an animal or a whole bunch of them. They listen well and almost never talk back. One in a while a horse will say … “neigh”, but not often 😮

I don’t care where you live or what you do, a place to blow off steam or perhaps just sit and have a good cry should be in everybody’s life. I think holding too much stuff inside is unhealthy and will lead to an early death. We humans, simply have to let go…otherwise we eat ourselves up.

I had to wake up two times in a hospital bed, before I realized to let things go that I cannot change. Some people simply can’t find that realization…the cemetery is full of them. They leave behind family and friends, because they couldn’t let work issues or changes in government or politics roll off their backs.

Just life and family can give you stuff to fuss about. Reach out, try, it will work out or not…you cannot change it. You have to just let things go. Destiny will be whatever it will be. We can’t change it, but we can let it go, hope for the best and forget about it.

The main thing, is to learn to give up what you cannot change. Turn over your concerns to a higher power and quit worrying about it yourself. I give my problems to God. Sometimes things work out and I get what I wanted, other times I don’t. I just have to trust that however it works out… that is the way it is supposed to be… I will leave it alone.

The best thing in my case is that I have several places where I can go and think. I guess that it is also good that I have learned to let things go. Of course, it wasn’t easy…but I did learn it! I encourage you to find a special place where you can go, relax and think. Perhaps it is the beach or a park or just a quiet place in your house…it is not important where it is…it’s only important that you find it!