Today ... I pulled a little dead chick out of the brooder and disposed of it. We've been so disheartened by this batch of chickens we received and just feel sad that the shipment was too hard on many of them.
Today ... I watched my friend Anni try to see if a gosling trying to get out of its shell might possibly survive after being discarded by its parents.
Today ... I got dirty as I fed the pigs. They don't seem to care that I am not a pig as they rub up against me and wait not-so-patiently for me to feed them.
Today ... I drove my four-wheeler threw the mud to check on my rams.
Today ... I picked up a tiny baby lamb, still covered in yellow amniotic fluid to determine it was a boy. I walked back up to the house, my hands covered in slime. Isaac told me he wanted to call him "buttered popcorn" because that is what he looked like with all that junk on him.
Today ... a runaway horse sprinted down our road and a four-wheeler followed to try to bring it home.
Abigail took this picture of our friend Anni and I watching "Grace" deliver her lamb.
Today ... I was reminded that this life we have chosen is beautiful and hard and exhausting and exhilarating all rolled up into one amazing package. Death surrounds us. But so does new life. My children watch animals mating and being born and dying and while some of it hits us harder than others, we put our chin up, do what needs to be done and move on.
Last week Sidge walked up to the house, carrying a dead chicken. "Hawk got her Mom," he said. "Okay if I throw it to the pigs?"
I said yes. We don't want anything to go to waste.
I used to make my kids wear shoes around the farm. And while I still try, I am letting them choose more and more what footwear they need on a given day including bare feet. The girls wear dresses that get filthy, and they seem unaffected by the dirt and mess of the farm.
A picture of my girls in their dresses and bear feet with Anni. This was how we spent dusk last night on the farm.
I'm dirty a lot. And I've actually realized I'm okay with that. I've always been a morning showered but that is changing as the summer begins to roll in and the heat and the dirt and the sweat starts to stick more and more to me.
Why do I do this?
Why do I stand alongside my husband and raise these animals and plants and children?
I know only this.
This is my life. I don't believe I chose it as much as it chose me. It was what God had destined for our family and where our kids were supposed to be raised. We have no desire to ever leave these rolling hills.
This is who God meant for my children to be. They will be "country kids" unaware of the hustle and bustle of life in a city until they choose to experience it. And they may choose a different life. And that's okay to. The things they learn here will stay with them forever.
They will never ask us where babies come from because they know from watching it daily.
They will always understand the permanency of death because that has been illustrated for them every single day.
They will see how a mother gives birth and how she knows what to do without being taught. They will witness her feeding her baby and be reminded that this is how we feed our babies as well.
They will see stars in the evening.
They will GET DIRTY.
And I am so happy they will.
Abigail asked for my camera to take some pictures of the sheep while Anni and I were watching the birthing Mama. She did this video that I found on my phone. It is just too cute to hear her little voice trying to tell about the sheep!
And here is a video I took of "Grace" giving birth. A few minutes later she delivered a healthy baby boy.