Another Year Older

Our chicks are fed, our freshly planted seedlings are watered, our lawn is mowed, our ears/noses/eyes/teeth are full of fine, windblown soil, and our hearts are full after a busy weekend.


I turn 32 tomorrow. When I turned 30 I had a hard time with it. It just seemed like a turning point, a spot where, if I allowed it to pass, I couldn’t get back to the way I was before. It came and went, though, and ultimately didn’t matter all that much. A few months later, my son was born, and being slightly scared of getting older seemed like a ridiculous thing to worry about at that point. Children have a way of making you feel simultaneously young and old all at the same time.


This year, I didn’t particularly feel like celebrating. We surely have lots of things to celebrate around here, but my birthday just didn’t feel like one of them. Instead, I’ve been trying to immerse myself in the various projects that need to get done around the farm. None of them have gone according to plan. I thought the hoop house would be finished in April. I thought I would have produce to begin selling at this point in the season, but I didn’t even get to plant those spring seeds at all. These missed goals bothered me for a while, but at this point I don’t really have the time or patience to worry about them. We said from the start that this year would be our learning year. We didn’t plan on making money (this is surely the one thing that we were 100% correct about), we just wanted to learn how to grow on a teeny-tiny version of a commercial scale and see what we could figure out. We always said that, at the very worst, we would just have a really big and awesome garden for ourselves. And so far, we’re learning a ton about growing, about business, about ourselves, and about our relationship with each other and with this patch of land.


As people have started hearing about what we’re trying to do on this windy little hilltop, and as people have started reading our story on this blog, we’ve been blessed to start to hear about the dreams and goals of others. We’ve been amazed to hear how many people would love to do something similar to what we’re doing. We’ve been touched to have people willing to share their own secret dreams and longings with us, and we’ve even been pleased to hear whiffs of naysayers who think this is a fool’s errand.


And all this, I have to tell you, makes us want this real bad. Like a lot a lot. We’re prepared to mess up, to fall flat on our faces, to figure out where we went wrong after it’s too late to fix it. Hell, we’re looking forward to that. Because all of that will make it that much sweeter when we wake up one day and find that all our dreams have come true without us even knowing it. After all, we’re “Finding Eminence,” not “Eminence.”


So as far as this weekend goes, here’s what’s up:

Things we got done:

  1. Modified crummy old shed into chicken coop/run (with lots of help from my almost-neighbor and best friend since high school)
  2. Re-planted green beans, which failed to germinate the first time around.
  3. Thinned sunflowers and zinnias.
  4. Planted a couple hundred more cut-flower transplants.
  5. Laid horizontal trellis for snapdragons.
  6. Used our new favorite tool, a collinear hoe from Johnny’s Selected Seeds, on all of our beds.
  7. Cleaned our house…and then promptly dirtied it all over again.
  8. Ripped out a fence by our back door.
  9. Layed in the grass and watched the sun set.