Merry Christmas

It has been awhile since I have written at Pampered Farmgirl, this is mainly due to the fact that I have been making handmade Christmas presents the last few months and that has taken up most of my time along with school. Thankfully this semester of school is done and I am now on Christmas break, I am really enjoying having some time off!

I wanted to take a moment to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas! I hope your holiday is filled with joy and laughter and you get to spend time with friends and family. And for those who are spending Christmas alone, I want you to know that I am very thankful for you and the fact that we get to share this beautiful earth and life together, in short, I am glad you are here.

So once more, I wish you and all your family and friends a Merry Christmas!

Sincerely,

The Pampered Farmgirl

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My Heart.

The other day a dark cloud had settled over my normally sunny personality. I went for a walk on our farm and as I stood and watched the sunset spill gold across the green grass such a longing filled my heart for other young people to take hold of the farming torch, to take their place in shaping history. I live in a small town in the middle of nowhere. Every year young people leave for better opportunities. The ones that stay are happy to pick up food at the grocery store and let life carry on.

I wished that young people would not shirk their work but that they would be proud of what that work could accomplish. That they would have a passionate, deep, love for the land.

Sometimes I feel like I am the only one holding the line, a thin thread between the continuation of society and utter destruction. But that’s why I keep doing it. Someone has to stand up, take the flag, and carry it to the top of the hill. Someone has to cry with the beat of freedom in their heart, “You will not take my land.”

This is my heart.

Do What You Love

This week I was researching if I should add dairy goats to our farm or not and if there was any local interest in them as I want to sell breeding stock. As I was researching I found very little helpful information and I became frustrated. While I was thinking and researching, a bolt of truth hit me: you can have statistics, advice, books, and seminars on a product that you want to produce or your dream business and how to start it up, but if you don’t have a little faith and take a risk that you may fail, you will neither gain experience nor depth in character. You will simply be afraid. If there is a breed of animal that you absolutely love, you should raise what you are passionate about. For example, I love Shetland sheep. Many people have made disparaging comments about them (sheep are not looked on favorably in my area, neither are horses, beef cattle are more popular), but in spite of the comments I love my sheep because they are a heritage breed and because they have very sweet and friendly personalities- they love to be petted and loved on. 🙂

That is why I farm, because I love it. Because every morning I wake up and feel so blessed and thankful to have, in my opinion, one of the best jobs in the world. So I encourage you to do what you love, if you love pygmy goats, or Peking ducks, or you love growing plants, or even just being creative, just do it, you will feel so much more satisfied in your soul.

Have a lovely week!

-Hannah

Inspiring Women Farmers

I think if someone asked Beatrix Potter why she bought up farm land in the Lake District of England she would say, ” Why let something beautiful be ruined?”

The same as if someone had asked Laura Ingells Wilder why she stayed in the Ozarks on a farm, she might say, “Why chase glittering dreams when you have everything you could want right here.”

When I was a child and first read Beatrix Potter’s stories, especially Peter Rabbit, I found a short little excerpt in my book that said she ended up living in the Lake District of England. I didn’t think much of it at the time. It wasn’t until the movie “Miss Potter” came out in 2006 that I realized what a truly remarkable woman she was. She lived in the city as a child and for summer holidays would travel with her family to the Lake District, which is where her love of the outdoors and animals grew. Eventually, when she grew up, she bought a farm in the Lake District called “Hilltop Farm”. She kept it up as a working farm and bought more land and added to her property. She later put her land in a land trust so that future generations could enjoy it. She conserved 4,000 acres of land. That is a large amount of property considering that England is a small country.

I wish that there was more to know or that I could travel back in time and see what her life was like and what inspired her. What mainly inspires me is that although she was wealthy she was an ordinary person like you and me and she cared about the land because she realized that the land was the heritage of her country.

Laura Ingells Wilder also inspires me because of the joy she took in farming. This is evident in the attention to detail she displays in her writings. Not only did she write the “Little House on the Prairie” books, but she also wrote articles for many years for farming and ladies magazines. Luckily someone gathered these together and published a book with the articles in it.  I was fortunate that my mother purchased a copy. I have spent many an hour reading the articles in that book and drawing inspiration from it.

My favorite quote from this book is when she is giving advice to a young woman who is planning to marry a young man who says he wants to be a farmer, and she comes to Laura for advice. Laura’s advice is some of the best advice I have ever heard for someone planning to marry a farmer: “If you want ease, unearned luxuries, selfish indulgence, a silken-cushioned, strawberries-and-cream life, do not marry a man who will be a farmer. If you want to give, as well as to take; if you want to be your husband’s full partner in business and in homemaking; if you can stand on your own feet and face life as a whole, the troubles and difficulties and the real joys and growth that come from them; if you want an opportunity to be a fine, strong, free woman, then you are fitted for the life of a farmer’s wife, to be his partner, the providence of your own little world of the farm and bread-giver to humanity, the true lady of the world.” (Little House in the Ozarks; The Rediscovered Writings. By Laura Ingells Wilder. Edited by Stephen W. Hines. Page 190.)

That quote is one of my favorite quotes of all time, and every time I need to remind myself of why I farm I like to read that quote.

Both these women have inspired me to take on the challenge of farming and have taught me to enjoy it. I am thankful that I have found some kindred spirits that feel the same way about farming as I do and I can’t wait to meet many more along the way.

Have a lovely Sunday!

-Hannah 🙂

Welcome Back.

When I was looking over this blog today, I realized that my last post was from October last year, and my, what a year it has been! I am thrilled to announce that I have finally graduated from nursing school, hooray! I am sorry that it has been so long since my last post, but these last few months have been literally a marathon. Now I’m taking a short break before I decide the next leg of my life journey. I’ve been planning, thinking, and praying. I believe that the next part of my life journey includes this blog. I promise I haven’t forgotten about you, my readers. This blog was still in the back of my mind as I plowed through plies of homework and struggled to write care plans, and it is still very important to me.

As I’ve been thinking, praying, and planning, I have also been thinking of the direction that I want this blog to grow into. I want to challenge myself to write the very best posts that I can and I also want to post more. I want to offer practical advice as well as my personal experiences and opinions of the different aspects of the farming lifestyle. I want to give you, my readers, and friends, something to grab that you can run with and carry with you through your own life that helps you inspire your own friends and family to love the land and all that it represents. Perhaps these are big ideas but I have never been a small dreamer.

You may also notice that I have given the blog a makeover. I wanted my design to be more feminine. However, I hope that despite the color change it will not keep my male readers from feeling welcome to visit.

So in short, I am back and I am very happy to finally come back as I have really missed writing. I am also looking forward to reconnecting with the blogging sphere, it has been way too long!

I hope you are all having a lovely day wherever you are reading this. Until my next post. 🙂

Ya’ll come back now, ya hear? 😉

-Hannah

P.S. I apologize if you see any weird advertisements for hamburger or tips for losing belly fat, I haven’t upgraded to the ad free version of this site, but I plan to eventually. Until then, just hang tight. 😉

 

Determined.

I haven’t posted in a long time. The reason is that I have decided to go back to school and become a nurse. It is intense, I am learning a lot, the candle is being burnt at both ends, and I am taking it one step at a time. That being said my involvement with the farm is minimal. Which makes me sad because I love it so. I had to take a trip recently to a big city and I was so relieved when I drove out of it and after about forty-five minutes saw a tractor and columbines harvesting corn and soybeans. Happiness welled up within me and the closer I got to my town the more I felt like I was truly coming home because it was a warm feeling in me that grew and grew. Later that night I went to a hog roast. Again the warm feeling came up inside because I was sitting with a group of ladies who all had their farm coats on (it’s October and the air is feeling crisp) and their boots and we were all laughing and talking about the things that mattered to us. And I was part of it. I accept that I will always be a bit different than the locals and that my alternative farming methods might puzzle them, but I must stand firm. I know whose I am, I know I am loved, and I know that God is pleased with me. And that is enough. What more could you ask for?

If you are feeling discouraged today, remember that the goal is worth it in the end and don’t expect gain without a little pain or discomfort. You got this.

Hope ya’ll have a blessed day.

-Hannah

Stuck in the Mud.

The other day I was reading a book I have enjoyed many times called “Thimble Summer”. I was reading the last chapter where two of the characters, Eric and Jay, are discussing what they want to be when they are older. Eric says he wants to be a farmer and Jay says something along the lines of, “I could never be a farmer. You’re always worrying about drought, and crops failing, and debt. What would you want to be a farmer for? You’ve seen the world. I want to see the world, not be stuck here. I could never be farmer.” Eric chastises Jay by telling him he’d seen worse than droughts and that once you’ve seen the world there isn’t much left to see. Besides you would own a farm that belonged to you.

Eric realized something very important that a lot of young people miss: the value of owning your own piece of land. So often young people reach for things that glitter and shine but really have very little value. The don’t realize that satisfaction is actually owning something and being able to turn it into a treasure to be passed down. There is something to be said for being “stuck”. Not that you are truly “stuck”-it’s all in your point of view. You could be living in a fancy apartment in a city and feel “stuck”. The way to not feel stuck is to try to find the value of the things around you and add more value to them. You can only get this perspective from God who values everybody.

Just feeling inspired to encourage young people to go back to the land. 🙂

God bless!

No City Lights for Me.

Here is an article I wrote when I was a teenager documenting my journey to becoming a farm girl. The experience I have written down below happened when I had just turned sixteen. Enjoy!

One day some friends and I and my youth group leader went to the Big City for a missions conference. After we had been at the conference for some time, we decided to go out and get a bite to eat before the ending worship service. When we got outside it was dark and rather exciting to be walking along the sidewalk of a big city at night looking for a place to eat. But as I looked up at the sky above the tall buildings, I realized with some anxiety that there appeared to be no stars. Of course I knew that there were still stars and that the city lights were so bright that you could not see the gentler light of the stars, but still it was rather disconcerting. Later that night as I went to sleep at a friend’s house in the suburbs next to the Big City, I thought about the fact that you couldn’t see any stars. Deep in my heart I started to miss my farm and my family. Right then is when I think the stirrings of realizing I was a real farm girl started to come to the surface. I decided that unless God asked me to live in a big city, that I wouldn’t choose that lifestyle for myself.

Later when an older friend who was out of high school mentioned to me that they were thinking of moving to that same Big City that I had visited, I told them about my experience with the stars. They didn’t move there. I don’t think it was because of my experience that I told them about, more than likely it was their personal decision. Nevertheless, they didn’t move there as far as I know. *Wink.* 😉

You Really Need to Garden

I felt a call of action today to garden. Because there may come a time soon when we are not just gardening for fun but for our food.

The wake up call came in the form of my mom coming home from Wal-Mart. She mentioned that there are a lot of items missing on the shelves and not restocked in a timely manner, just empty spaces that used to hold conveniences we use every day. The word that came to mind was shortages. Who thought we’d hear that word in America?! It’s just a whisper now but the warning may grow louder.

All these thoughts made me think of gardening. Because where do we get most of our food? The local grocery store. Not to discredit them, they do a good and useful job. But most grocery stores don’t have a lot of back stock especially of fruits and vegetables. Half of the grocery store would have to be freezers and refrigerated rooms to keep all that food fresh if they were getting one shipment every week. But they aren’t just getting shipments of things every week, they are getting shipments every day, small shipments just enough stock to keep them going for three days and after that, no more groceries.

I sincerely worry about people who have an emergency garden kit that comes in a nuclear resistant can (slight exaggeration) that promises that you can grow an entire garden for a year’s worth of food and all you have to do is store it in a cool dry place. I’m sorry to break it to you; your ‘can’ isn’t going to save you but C.A.N. will. What?! Let me explain C.A.N. Calm Action to save a Nation. What does that mean? It means you need to have skills. Let me expand my thoughts. You need to have a cool head and an inner peace to deal with circumstances that would make your natural human nature tremble in fear. That covers calm. Action means knowing the skills necessary to live in a variety of circumstances and being able to perform those skills to make survival possible. To save a nation. Hmm. Well, call me a dreamer. My hope is that enough people will wake up, stand up, and make a stink enough about certain global and government entities — entities that are doing things behind our backs to get rich and laugh and play their lyres while they watch Rome burn. My hope for America is that people will wake up.

Ultimately, my hope is in God. But I don’t think it hurts to know how to garden.

Just Dance.

A friend once mentioned to me that their favorite movie was Wall-E, which made me want to see it again as my family and I haven’t watched it in awhile.

That movie came out at just the right time for my family, we were considering moving to our farm and it seemed quite a daunting step; we were starting from scratch.

One evening during that certain time, we decided to watch Wall-E. One fun tradition that I have is that whenever we watch Wall-E, I always dance to the music at the end while the credits roll. So that night I danced, I danced in absolute joy. All I can say is that the power of God must have fallen that night because the whole family was filled with supernatural joy; God was confirming our steps, He was moving in America-bringing His people back to the land-and we got to be a part of it!

When we did watch Wall-E again, I danced again, and the same joy came back. God is moving in America. We get to join in the dance. Hallelujah! 😀