Rain. Scythe. Paper.

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We awoke to sheets of rain, and it continued past lunchtime.

An impromptu family conference delayed us too, but we got the ponies' fence moved, the turkeys moved, and the sheep moved, and I scythed considerable patches of nettles and thistles. It is still not easy. It still doesn't look a bit as we'd like it to.

I've been dwelling a lot on other people's successes and achievements, this week, and I've concluded I must just stop. If it means leaving Facebook, or feedly, or what ever it takes, I really must inhabit my own world. There is much to do. I'm not going to get it done looking at someone else's off-grid caravan.

Scything nettles and thistles is a wholly different action than mowing grass with a scythe, and personally I find it takes more of a toll on the arms. Mine ache.

We rounded the day off with a trip to the Cinema with H, Boo, and Boo's Best Friend, K. We saw Paper Towns. It was an OK movie, the girls really wanted to see it. I didn't like the ending, not to add a spoiler!

Boo and BFK are 16, but I did think some of the conversations were a bit much for a 12 year old, and the film's certificate was 12A. There is some material there for discussion!


We are made for so much more than ordinary lives.

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Casting Crowns - Thrive

Off Griddedness

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Last week, in the middle of the night, Neil was suddenly, inexplicably stricken with the worst headache he'd ever had. It was instant onset, and followed by vomiting.  For this reason, he was rushed into hospital, but it never came to much and they decided he was ok, without so much as a scan.

Like my own health scare a few months back, this has made us think and talk, which can only be a good thing.

It has always been our hearts' desire, and our honest understanding of God's call on our life, to live simply, to the point of off grid if necessary. To hold space for the land, to honour a covenant.

We have turned our dreams into chores, and thus have we marched upon them in muddy boots, but they are our dreams, and on dreams, as we all know, we should tread softly.

The time now is to take joy.  In an instant, one evening, while hurriedly doing the chore of shutting up these darlings ...



... we suddenly decided to turn it into the great joy of spending time together, at dusk on a summers evening, enjoying the company of our beloved goats. Everything lifted.

We can do this. We can take the mundane and make it a hymn of praise. We can delight in our hours, how ever many, however few.

Today, at lunchtime, I rapidly peeled down a courgette from the polytunnel into 'courgette pasta' and steamed it in butter with a fresh egg from the rescued hens. It was sublime.


as I work, during the day, I pluck tomatoes and munch on them, their sun warmed sweetness, makes me smile.


I am blessed beyond measure that all of these things, we can share, in love, regardless of the outside world. We could live off grid if we needed to. To that end, we have decided to redouble our efforts to fit out the caravan at the field, in order that on long summer days, and inhospitable winter nights, we will have a safe shelter where we belong.


Late Harvest

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It is August now, and the time of harvest. Well, maybe, for some.
I planted a lot of things late, and will be harvesting a lot of things late, weather permitting.

We have had some very chilly nights, and I believe in some northern areas it has been down to 1C which is not really your usual August night time temp.  I have stepped outside some mornings to a chill reminiscent of autumn. It can't be autumn yet?

We haven't even made our hay yet - and I'm getting twitchy as Neil continues to put off talking to the contractor. Hay is a very key part of our operation.

As the season threatens to shift, perhaps too soon, to a new phase, I feel my own impatience to do all that I have tried and failed (or talked about and not tried) to do for year after year. It's so easy to believe that because you have tried (or talked about) a thing many times, and it hasn't happened - somehow it's too late.

It can't be.  In my heart, I know I need to make this farm be and do all it can. Some days I feel drugged by my inability, my lack of knowledge, the lack of time.

What do I really lack? Faith.

Maybe it is the time of the harvest of lost dreams and failed attempts, the harvest of wasted youth and fertile middle years, the harvest of plans and schemes, knocks and trips, sorrows and misfortune, hope and belief, of God's promises and my lack of faith in our own ability. The actual harvest.
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