Its been a crazy few months around here. Oh wait, its always a crazy month!
These past few have been a little extra busy with a new addition to our family – Miss Maisree – a Silver Lab puppy who has kept us hopping with her seemingly endless energy! When she isn’t bouncing off the walls, she’s cuddled up with us and showing us endless love. Labs really are my kind of dog. Between puppy classes, housetraining – oh and the 4am wake up calls every day since mid-march….I’m beat! Its all worth it though. Just look at that face!
While a puppy has been a great distraction, there has been a lot happening on the farm and lots of kids activities going on at the same time. I think I’ve reached expert level in juggling the past few months! One thing I’ve learned over the winter about myself is that I’ve given up trying to find the elusive “balance” that everyone seems to be chasing when it comes to work and life in general. For me, there is no such thing, life just is what it is. Rather than stressing over finding how to make it all work cohesively and still have that also elusive “me time”, I’ve found that I am far more successful at tackling one thing at a time and taking things as they come. If I have to drop the ball on one thing every now and then, I let it slide. It is much better for me to leave something behind than to stress over how to make it all happen at once.
We’ve really put the drive on to get the new barn as closed to finished as we can before planting starts. The weather has helped with that since its been so cold and wet that we haven’t been able to work any land at all yet. We’ve completed the walls and ceiling, laid all the insulation, installed the vents and fans, and painted the entry/furnace room. Since we are doing this all ourselves, it has taken a while to complete thus far but has gone rather smoothly (as I type this I knocked on all things wooden and cross all my fingers!) Last week while hubby and I finished putting the plywood on the ceilings, my father in law started hanging wire and light fixtures. It has been a labour intensive process, but after a winter of spending more time indoors, I’ve been so happy to be back out and getting my body moving on a regular basis. It wont stop now until January again! I’ve already stocked up on Epsom salts, peppermint oil and Tylenol in preparation for the aches and pains of bumping around in the tractor again, luckily they all come in handy for construction work as well.
Throughout this entire process of barn building, its also been amazing to see how we’ve all come together to contribute to the workload. The kids have been great at helping to pick up wood scraps and any nails or screws that we’ve dropped along the way. They’ve also been so good at taking their bikes and toys in to play if we’ve needed to spend some extra time working on the weekends. Ususally, we work all day together until the kids come home from school, then my duties switch to being home with them for homework, supper prep and any other extracurriculars like 4H or sports. When we really need to catch up or want to get a bit ahead so we have some free time later in the week, we all head down and get to work. The little boys really liked when the big bags of insulation were piled up so they could climb on them and make forts. Their imaginations are sometimes the only “toy” they need, and I am thankful for that!
I’ve mentioned before that my favourite thing is that I get to work side by side with my husband every day. We compliment each other well. We communicate well most of the time, and discuss ideas between each other, being able to work together, not just beside one another, but actually cohesively is something I will never take for granted. That being said, it isn’t always easy. Especially when one of us is having a bad day, or fatigue has set in. Hubby’s MS can make the fatigue hit suddenly and the day can seem to crash and burn in a hurry – I am sure it happens to me as well though. Lately, the weather has been a pain to try to plan for planting and other spring jobs. Mother Nature’s mood swings can wreak havoc on a farmers mental health and on those days, working with your farming spouse is far from pleasant…everything seems to be someone elses fault, and communication is nothing beyond looks and growls. Not pleasant…at all. And super frustrating. Its temporary so we each take it with a grain of salt, but those days are hard to get through and still want to spend time together at home at the end of the day. In the back of our minds though, we know we’re in it for the long haul – bad days included. We’ll be celebrating 13yrs of marriage this month, so I guess we’re doing something right.
As we look ahead to the next month, we know how insane its about to get. Along with the normal business, we’ll add planting, fertilizing, end of school year activities, preschool graduation, and so much more…we have this feeling that neither one of us can really explain, its like excitement, anxiety, and adrenaline all mixed together. Whatever you call that feeling, its what will get us though another farming season.