Family · Parenting · Perspective

extra

I’m sitting here on my couch reviewing the past week and looking ahead to the next. My daughter is trying on clothes from the cousin hand-me-down bag (which is amazing).

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We are on Day 2 of fall break. Day 1 was parent-teacher conferences, an hour in the office at work, Cosmic Kids Space Club, and dance class.

Space club is a group of my son’s buddies that were invited to check out Saturn on one of the boy’s grandpa’s telescope.

We just finished soybean harvest. The guys are drilling on the last few dozen acres of wheat. For a blessed day, we are still a few points too damp for milo harvest.

As I sit here, I realize that the role of mother, wife and working mom isn’t what wears me out. It’s all the extras.

It’s the Ear Nose and Throat specialist we will visit in Monday for 3 rounds of strep throat in 60 days. The additional meeting I need to attend.

It makes me wonder how necessary some of those commitments are. The ENT is a must. What about the others?

At kids’ youth group Wednesday night, another volunteer from the generation before mine asked me if my parents scrambled around as much as my generation is to make it all happen. After a few days of thought, I’m convinced they did. However, I don’t think it started this young.

Is it really going to put my kids at a disadvantage if they don’t do that next extra activity?

I speculate that having a mom who isn’t scurrying, rushing and occasionally loosing her sh*t  patience is likely better for everyone.

Family · Perspective

Thoughts from the Tractor Seat

While raking prairie hay and being launched against my tractor’s seat belt, I cursed how rough the pasture meadow was – pockmarked here and there with a coyote den or other abandoned hole. Then I backtracked. How blessed am I to be in that position?! On land that’s been in my family for over a hundred years, working with my husband, in sturdy steady equipment to get the job done. I felt like I was necessary.

view from tractor

I also thought it humorous that it has been met with incredulity (even by my own children!) that YES, I was driving the tractor. Yes, this sorority girl and cheerleader was the main operator for this rig.

I’ll be the first to admit I’m not some version of bad@ss farmer or anything. I’ve done the labor for farming and ranching for the majority of my life on my family’s farm alongside my dad, mom, and sisters. My dad didn’t have any boys.

I guess this is where my own version of feminism comes in. I am perfectly, as is any other woman, capable of most of the tasks on the farm, in the hills, in the pasture, and in the field. For the heavy stuff, you bend your knees, straighten your back and team lift.

It’s actually only been in the last few years since I had children that I haven’t been hands-on farming somewhere. I miss it. It’s in my blood and history. Thankfully, it is also in my future!

Life changes and heat related fatigue (thanks MS) have altered the way I am able to work. If I don’t want to fight numbness and tingling, I have to watch the thermometer. This means I get a tractor or combine with air conditioning. No wheat truck for me this year at harvest. When I get overheated, I’m dragging for a couple of days – like heavy arms and legs – exhausted. Avoidance is key.

I’ll leave you with this beautiful picture of where I worked yesterday evening. Flyover country is truly breathtaking.

God's Country

#farmgirl #independentwoman #hardworkknowsnogender #hayseason

Family · Parenting · Perspective

Post-It Notes

It is absolutely time for my husband to come home. I contemplated, quite seriously, climbing under my desk next to my floor heater and pretending I wasn’t here. Or maybe just staring at my feet with my head on the edge of my desk?

Work has been busy. In our current economic climate (regional – i.e. Agriculture), no room to be negative if we are busy! Kids are kids are kids – healthy, energetic, creative. All good things, right? Can’t complain. Won’t complain.

As I was sitting for a moment on the couch after work yesterday, trying to simply and quietly beat back the dull throb I’d been fighting all day, my son asked if we could make up our own scavenger hunt. It was raining. Headache. Non-stop stuff all day. Really?

I started to say “Let’s do it later…” but stopped and said “Sure. Go get some post-it notes and a pen.”

paper-notes-clipart-blank_sticky_note_clip_art_9428An indoor scavenger hunt wasn’t going to make my headache worse. He picked a small Hot Wheels truck to be the prize at the end and hid it under the napkin holder basket on the kitchen island.

We then proceeded to write clues for his sister to follow. He offered to read them because she is only 4.

  1. Look up and down. Which floor is it on? Which direction is the sky? — Up (Upstairs)
  2. I feel tired. Walk 20 steps in the direction where you go when you sleep. (Bedroom)
  3. It’s so cold in here! Go where you can keep warm! (Fireplace)
  4. This walking is making me hungry. Where can I get a snack? (Pantry)
  5. I made a mess. I’d better get the tool that sucks up crumbs. (Vacuum)
  6. Walk 4 steps forward to get closer to the end. (put her by the kitchen table)
  7. I’m thirsty! I’d better get a drink of milk. (Refrigerator)
  8. Walk 9 steps forward. It’s on the counter. The prize has wheels.

Of course, he didn’t let her keep his truck… but this was good for 10 minutes entertainment!

I love watching them work together. They will grow to be such a wonderful brother-sister team (crossing my fingers). I treasure these idyllic moments.

I won’t paint my family as perfect. Sheesh. Far from it. This morning, they got in a fight while brushing teeth that devolved into toe stomping, pushing, and eventually my daughter went “Cujo” on her brother. giphy4

We were running late to get to the sitter’s (no school today). I was on the phone with a customer because for some reason, I answered the business phone 30 minutes before we actually open for business. *Silly me. Lesson learned* As I was discussing the details of a potential sale, they could be heard screaming, sobbing, and pursuing “justice.”

**Sigh**

T- minus 24 hours… but who’s counting???

Much Love — Jen