Back to the plough

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Shortly after my last post, I gave up training for a job which could have earned us the extra money we so desperately needed. What, am I mad? Yes.Probably.

Four hours a day training meant I hadn't time to keep up the garden, milk the goats, take care of the house or support the children fully. That's reason number three. Neil wasn't at all convinced the whole scheme was a good idea, and wanted me to focus more on getting the family business up and running. Reason two.

Reason one? Praying about it all week, and feeling totally not led and totally in the dark - I was very concerned about the nature of the work. Working inbound calls on home shopping doesn't sound too bad at first - after all, they 're calling you, right? They want to make the purchase.

True. However, the target audience is neither the wealthiest nor yet the most savvy. And the compulsory pushing of extra items drives up the bill quite quickly. And then comes the killer - cut the payments, extend the term, and accept the high interest credit deal. As someone who has suffered, long and hard, and is still suffering, from falling into just such a trap - Oh boy, it didn't feel good. But we have bills to pay, right? And needs must ... I'm not going to finish that sentence, but you know how it ends.

On Thursday, I opened my Bible to the readings on my calendar. And there, in Isaiah 48 only on that day in big sparkly letters standing out from the rest of the page were the words:

GET OUT OF BABYLON.

If you're of the not christian persuasion, you may want to skip this bit, but fellow believers I'm sure you've had the days when a phrase or verse takes on that sparkly neon characterstic, and you sit down rather hard and think. OH.

Just in case I hadn't quite got it, the day's other Rev 18 did a quick rundown for me on the whole Babylon thing.

Woah.

So. After some consultation, on Friday, I stopped. And forfeited a certain amount of money invested, and some time, and the chance of a bonus for completing the course, and a way to make money not from the farm.

Now I'm a bit cast down. After a day or two of euphoria, the reality set in - the only chance I've had in over a decade to add to the family budget, and I've just given up on it. It's the harsh part of living half the life - my children aren't homeschooled any more, and I can't use that as the reason for my being. I have to contribute. Somehow.

The impetus I'd felt to get the gardens under way, and get the grant applications in and the courses organised suddenly deserted me. I spent yesterday cleaning upstairs. When I was tied to a desk for four hours a day, the chance to get into the gardens and work was precious, and I was working on admin late into the night. Take away the restrictions, and suddenly I can't work.

Sometimes that's how it is. But this morning, reading Bethany Vaughan's great post about despair in the garden, I have pulled myself up again. I've been letting the weeds in- not just out there in the veg plot, but in here, around my heart. Rooting them out is hard, back breaking work, but the benefits are great.

The work will be therapeutic. In my heart, I know the real battle is to choose to be content. To look at all the incredible blessings we have, to go out among them, and to choose to accept and glory in them.

Just a now post

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It's good to be eating from the garden again. Cooking dinner with freshly picked veg - and yes we did rear the pork as well! - is what it's about.
Just trying to keep going at the moment, having started training for at home call centre work, and finding myself short of hours in the day.
But here's the thing, I've been thinking - on my feet - always on my feet - about what to do about blogs, and I've come to a conclusion.
This blog has become depersonalised and less intense, because I'm trying to start a business, and I've tried to avoid writing stuf which will upset or offend anyone. Well, that doesn't work for me on my personal blog.
It has become less about my faith, my relationsipe with God, the raison d'etre behind our whole lifestyle, the core of what we are. Less about how I'm feeling how I'm doing, what's for supper, how'd I save some money, what's the latest in the sewing room, and shall I make more soap - and because of that, I've become less interested and engaged with the whole thing.

So.

I have the farm blog www.chestnutsfarm.com which I am attempting to keep more updated. It really is a farm blog, it just deals with what's going on on the land, and the business side of things.
This blog is going back to being my personal journey - and if you are uncomfortable with that, I'm sorry, and I hope you'll stay, and bear with me, but if you really don't want to know, there is always the farm!

I realised I was avoiding saying things, because I have non christian readers, non English readers, politically different readers, readers even with different attitudes to food and farming - and then I realised I read their blogs, often - and I'm interested, and I love them dearly, and I gain from what I read, and I don't expect to agree with every last view or relate to every belief or idea.

And dull as it may have been, I want to go back to my everyday farming homestead blog, with the soap and the sewing, and the prayers and the principles. My family is battling at the moment, as I know many are - I want to share our journey and look into yours. If they're different, that's fine. Please stay, please bear with me!

I only ask that you are kind, not contentious, if some bits irk you, skip 'em. If it all irks you, I hope you'll check in with the farm blog.

Now, knowing me, I'll not say anything more for a month!

Stranger in a Strange Land

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I haven't been here for so long, I wanted to stop by and say hello.

It's been a madly busy time for us, and it's not letting up.

Two weeks ago, my beloved little horse, Archie, died of acute colic. It was the most horrid thing, and I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to both my husband and my vet, who dealt with the very worst part, while I wept uncontrollably with my daughters.

Money is tight, and as of Tuesday, I am beginning training to work from home taking call centre calls. I am praying that by the time the training is finished, God will have clearly shown me there is another way for me to contribute to the family income. A massive upsurge in orders for veg boxes would be one favoured way.

We have bantam babies, and pregnant goats.

We had no rain for like, MONTHS. Last night we had a huge (OK, US friends, it was not huge by your standards) thunder storm, and we made up a little of the rain.

I want to change everything, and find that I can change little.

God is in charge, and He knows what's going on. Which is good, because I so don't.
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