Thursday, December 18, 2014

December on the Homestead

Remember when-ing and unendingly dreaming.  Cringing a little at all the mistakes (also note-keeping so they hopefully don't repeat) and tearing up at the precious moments.  Heartbreaking changes, beautiful redemptions.  A hard garden season past, hopeful these rains bring life to our land in seasons to come.  December is a month of remembrance and aspiration.  A mental account of the year's days play in my head and I desperately try to snag moments to ponder and jot them down.  A whole new year ahead of us!  What will it bring?  How will we spend it?  Longing for intentionality in every possible way, yet making space for the unforeseen.

All this pondering within plays out in the physical this month.  We look ahead with hope as the seed order goes in and decide which kind of chicks to buy in a couple months.  December is rich with memory-making as traditional cookies are made while familiar carols play in the background.

The kids were so eager for Christmas vacation to come that we doubled up on school for a week and have since been on holiday for almost a week already.  I'm not sure who's happier about that; the kids or I?  It's a wonder to me how the days melt away before daily goals are met.  A slowing down of sorts is to blame.  I often find myself stopping and savoring the season's beauty with my loved ones enveloped in it.

Winter is brief here (sometimes it feels too brief) and I am thankful for the respite from most things outdoors.  Most of the year's reading is done in December and January, then its back to starting seeds and preparing beds for them, cleaning the chicken coop for the next batch, and preparing the brooder and barn for baby animals ushered in early spring.  In the meantime, it's cozy to stay indoors, cooking and baking more, tending to the wood stove for warmth, filling simmer pots and breathing in their ambient aroma, and snuggling under blankets with the family after the day's chores are done.

December holds a special place in my heart.  It seems to fade so quickly; especially when business stealthily spins me in it's flurry and I can't tell up from down.  It's a good problem, finding the balance of just enough festivities to say yes to and leaving space for rest and intimacy; but it can be a problem nonetheless.  May we all find the balance this half of December and enjoy loud, jolly gatherings and quiet, reflective evenings before the advent of the New Year.


  1. I love it. Yes and amen. And I love the drawing. So precious.

  2. I'm always wishing for more time in December. Sounds like you're making the most of it!

  3. I always so much enjoy reading your posts. I also really like the new heading on your blog :-) Merry merry Christmas to you and your family!

  4. Your posts are beautiful, and so is all the Christmas on the homestead :) Happy holidays!

  5. Do you have any website or book suggestions for starting a small, organic backyard garden? We have an 8 month old so what in looking for is a step by step, to the point, resource. I don't have a lot of experience with gardening, so I'm definitely at the beginner level. Thanks!!

  6. Thanks so much! I hope your holidays were lovely. :)

  7. Hi! My two go-to resources are and you might be interested in the book Square Foot Gardening.

  8. Perfect! Thank you so much, be blessed!!


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