Well! I haven’t really felt the urge to write much recently, until today. I’ve had a bit of a blog block! But what to talk about? So much happening still around the world…. So much I could say…but I think I’ll stick to here today.
So! Life carries on here in much the same way at the moment. Home schooling J for a short while in a morning, learning mostly through just doing life though. Although Ireland has gone to what they call Level 3 in relation to Covid and increasing cases. So you stay within your own county, still limit your contacts and there’s no indoor gatherings etc, well, apart from schools I suppose, and workplaces. Church services have been stopped again, although church buildings are open for private prayer.
So many jobs to do for both of us. Life here is never boring, I’ll definitely say that. We have such long lists! (in our heads, I haven’t written everything down). So getting the balance between family and jobs can be difficult. What I mean is, spending actual one on one time with the boys for example, can get sacrificed a lot because of doing things. Most of the house still needs tidying up and decorating, we haven’t got any storage or surfaces in the kitchen. We don’t really have light shades or curtains up yet in most rooms, the ones we do have up are held up with garden canes which were up when we came. I think we need to get another dehumidifier for upstairs too as we get into the winter months, it gets so humid. But, on a lighter note! It’s so much better than it was, I love that we can take a bath actually in a bath rather than a plaster bath and that it’s in a proper bathroom! It’s so easy to get complacent and forget how much of a blessing it actually is.
Outside, it is seriously neverending, we’re still sorting the trees that got chopped down, there’s such a lot of work just to get those sorted and there’s still loads of trees left to cut down and process too.
The field needs cutting regularly to get rid of the rushes and Chris can’t always do it if it’s very wet as the tractor can’t be used on it when it’s like that. But it is looking good! We need to sort out fencing on two sides of the field too, but that won’t be doable until we’ve sorted the trees out, partly because some trees are lying across the fence. There are fences there, but the posts need replacing. It also isn’t an urgent ‘now’ job.
There are also the chickens to take care of, there is chopping wood to ensure we have enough to burn (but we have a lot of wood, which is great) and taking it down to the house, weeding the garden, growing plants to try to fill the garden, weeding, sorting and planting the greenhouse. Processing anything we need to from the greenhouse. Keeping all the grass cut around the house and loads more. Chris mends the cars himself if needed, and there’s been a lot of that over the past couple of years and there’s obviously the normal everyday housework and jobs too. I can just stay here every day and always have something to do. Chris also has his full time job to do too, which is also very hard work. He has some serious stamina, I have to say.
So, it is hard work, but hard work is good for you and we do enjoy it on the whole. It’s mainly the prioritising and choosing what’s most important that can be difficult. The lack of space and clutter when cooking can get very frustrating too, but its doable. I’m trying to get the decorating and preparation for decorating done (very slowly) in the kitchen. The boys have started helping with certain tasks, such as loading the wheelbarrow with wood and transferring it to the box in the house and they (in general) seem to enjoy, they also really like the greenhouse, although I have to be careful they don’t knock over the plants. As the plan is to get a few more animals in the future too (not completely decided on what yet, or when (not this year)) there will definitely be more to do then too!
I try to spend time with God every day, what I’ve found recently is that I can superficially come and go ‘hello’ ‘I’m praying’ whilst doing other things, which is sort of fine, but there is a space to come into, a ‘silence’ in which I can enter into His presence more deeply. It is this that sustains me, this intentional (even if it’s not a long time) coming into his presence and His love. I often fail, I often get frustrated with life and get short tempered and irritable and He is always there, He knows me and loves me anyway (you too) and changes me, sometimes gradually, sometimes quickly.
Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. (Hebrews 10:23).
The greenhouse has almost been cleared now, apart from Brussel sprouts, turnips, lettuces, leeks and garlic. I’ve covered the spare beds with cardboard and mown grass in an attempt to stop weeds from growing before next spring and I suppose it will warm the soil too. I’m growing lupins in pots from seed and they will stay in the greenhouse until the spring when they’ll go into the front garden. I also plan to try growing some sweet peas, I’ve never tried them at this time of year, but it’s worth a shot.
There’s a couple of robins and a wren who always seem to be around at the moment, everywhere you go when you’re outside, or you can often see them through the kitchen window on the wood pile, they’re lovely. It’s really nice to hear a flutter and see the robin really close to you. The swallows have gone now, there’s a few wagtails about and J has decided they’re the smallest birds in the world! Nothing I say can persuade him otherwise. Most of the flowers are still going strong in the garden and the wild flower patch, they seem to come into their own later here than in Derbyshire. The Cosmos and cornflowers are really going for it all of a sudden, amongst others. They’re beautiful but I really need to sort the weeding out, otherwise the ‘garden’ is going to get swallowed up by grass etc over the winter and it’ll just look like another part of the land.
This is helping because it is me taking almost a more objective look at what we need to do and whether we actually have as much as I think. What I do know is you can just keep on working all the time until you drop unless you make an effort not to. Whilst that is ok sometimes, it’s not if you still have the kids bedtime to do, so! priorities, priorities!
Having said all this, it sounds like we have a never ending lifestyle of wholesome outdoors running about life, today, we don’t, at this precise moment we have the tv on, the kids were watching operation Ouch but now Sooty is on and I’m attempting to get some energy up and get going and decide what to do, if anything. My motivation is not there at this precise moment (and I’ve eaten too many biscuits!).