the turkey stands alone

yesterday
all of my livestock went to live
with a very nice red-haired farmer
who knows what the fuck he is doing
& isn’t just winging it
like some kind of off-kilter homesteading maniac…
i think i learned
many many things
from my livestock experiment 
(not to be confused with my motherhood experiment)
although some of what i learned
is very similar to my motherhood
experiment…
yesterday
my yard emptied out
no more ducks…chickens…goats…or sheep
just the turkey stands alone
and i feel 
a lot
sad
but also
a little
relieved.

i’m telling the minions…it’s a new chapter…a new episode of our lives. change is not necessarily a bad thing. change can be good. really really good. 
but it’s still sad.

meanwhile, i have gotten a little done over on my patreon page.

and a birthday card & a patron card

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ghosting illinois

in the spring of 2016
i lived in manitowoc wisconsin
i had begun volunteering
at a community garden
working with
farm to school
& helping to launch
a cooperative grocery
things i had wanted to do
most my adult life
i was doing them
joining a community
on the icy shores
of lake michigan

circumstances changed
my landlord decided
she needed more space
my ex decided
we should try again
my parents moved away
and i had a free place to stay
who doesn’t want
a free place to stay
but
as we all know
nothing
is free

i’m trapped in illinois
isolated
no community
no urban scene
any where near
for
gardening
& creating green spaces
i am stranded
right in the middle
of a giant fucking green space
(turns yellow though
when the corn has tassles)

i want to ghost
illinois
move to a town
large or small
but a town that needs
someone like me
a town that wants
someone like me
a town that loves
someone like me
a town
maybe
in iowa?

throwing a dart at at map. what about decorah iowa? it has nice assonance. i do enjoy a good ass..onance.
i don’t know. any thoughts? anyone?
i have to stay within kid-swapping distance of their dad in southern wisconsin…but i don’t want to be too close. plus people in wisconsin do not like me very much.
i used to live in iowa city. for the first four years of my adulthood i lived in iowa city. and i did love it. i ended up ghosting it because i was 22 & the world beckoned & my therapist wanted me to stop dating & focus on healing…so i skipped town & moved to illinois (briefly) & binged on boys before beginning a state-hopping escapade, full of boys.
but that is another story.
i liked iowa city. and i like the idea of going back to school & being close to friends…but i also like the idea of finding a small community in a picturesque setting.
hmmmm?

i’m hoping to be out of here by my birthday (july 12–mark your calendars!) as both a big happy birthday to me and as a fuck you to my folks who are headed back up here to wrap up loose ends.
i know, really mature…but you should meet my parents before judging my desire to avoid them at any cost.
plus my kids are still traumatized from their last interaction with my parents.
(never ever ever should have moved back here…but that is a lesson learned)

here comes trouble

last night veronica was born to my goat, agatha. agatha is my escape-goat. she will not stay in a pasture for anything. i am hoping veronica changes that….
but maybe i just now have two trouble makers.

meanwhile, claudia, who is now one week old is doing awesome. she is fluffy & bouncy. this morning while i was milking her mom, magdalene, claudia kept jumping on my back–trying to scale me like a small mountain.

new kid on the block

i’ve been spending a lot of time in the shed today. so much cuteness.
but i am getting some art done.
a little.
claudia the kids is nursing successfully & has dried off so she is actually adorable now.

& i’m trying really hard not to obsess about death….

i don’t know what i’m doing

in the mid-90s i was all set to go to school
to study
animal husbandry
i was living with my folks to save money
but then
they did what my folks do best
& i was all
fuck y’all
and got in my car & drove off
leaving my dreams of college behind

flash forward to the fucking mania that convinced me i could just wing it.
i don’t know what i’m doing.
this cute thing showed up this morning & i’m just thinking, “god i hope i don’t somehow kill you–or inadvertently cause your death due to my own ineptitude.”
i don’t know what i’m doing.
both the babe & her mama are looking like they have no clue. i’m looking like i have no clue.

the clueless homestead, that sounds about right.
i need a hunky shepherd with the patience of an oak tree to come and rescue me–i mean, assist me.
stat!

happy imbolc

both blue
& i
saw our shadows
confirming
that we are halfway between
the winter solstice & the spring
equinox
but considering it was 20 below
just three days ago
& is now 40 above…
who the fuck knows
what spring has in mind
for us
nevertheless
happy imbolc!

super dooper cuteness

when i was a kid
my name was
mary
so, of course,
i was obsessed with lambs…
i still am.

these two were fresh born this morning to our ewe, elsa. their dad–whom we sold last autumn–was shaun the sheep.

the dead of winter

after a quiet start to winter, central illinois got a snowy blowy storm that dumped like 8 inches & then sculpted those inches into knee deep drifts that have turned my yard into an obstacle course requiring a workout just to get to the goats & ducks.

also, i had to dig out my driveway, both for the mail delivery person as well as for my own plans to ever leave the house. i don’t have a snowblower or a plow. i did it by hand & was more than impressed with how strong i am as well as how fit yoga has kept me. i don’t even have a sore back.

this morning we got the added element of frosting on all the trees & bushes & anything sitting still enough to be frosted.

homesteading blues

as i try to figure out
where i want to be
who i want to be
who i am…
shopping for a new home
means leaving behind some things
i love
but regret i could not love
enough
once upon a time
i was a girl with a gentle spirit
who loved animals
but that spirit was cruelly
broken
& now i am so conflicted
am i a homesteader?
or an urbanite?
can i be both?
can i live without
wide open spaces?
can i thrive
without a ready
community?

i cannot imagine myself staying here without going completely fucking nuts…but when i go to list my critters on craigslist, i struggle to imagine a life without them.
except that it would be a life with less things to worry about.
and that does sound nice.
but no geese wandering through my front yard? no goats taking care of the lawn for me? no ducks randomly flying onto the roof? no turkey to be ambassador to my property?

of course, i have no where to go right now. i just know i cannot stay here. i looked into intentional communities, but all of the ones equipped to house a family our size, are way way too expensive for this mom who does not prioritize income.

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