Friday, January 21, 2011

Winter Werk - part 2


The following is a continuation of the prior post addressing what this veg farmer does during the "off-season."

Is Winter a break from physical labor?
Once again, we can answer with both a yes and a no.  Doesn't that figure?  I'm either wishy-washy or a teacher (I'd consider the second a compliment).
We certainly do less physical activity in the Winter - which explains the additional pounds on my frame that require Spring to burn off.  But, there are still physical activities to do in the Winter for the farm.  And, when you do them, you can be surprised by how much more difficult they can be.  After all, you have to struggle with the multiple layers of clothing.  Things like balance and flexibility feel like attributes that you will never again have as you stumble around in the snow and ice.  And, everything just takes longer.  Hauling water out to the chickens seems like a small task - but it can become an adventure on uneven, frozen ground with patches of ice and snow.  It's even more exciting when you have drifts *on top* of the uneven frozen ground with patches of ice.  'Nuff said.

January - Month of Dreams
Is this heaven?  No, it's Iowa.
In January.

There are reasons for an uptick in blog posts or newsletter articles over the Winter.  Obviously, I have more time for such things.  And, it is certainly a method to promote the farm - I cannot deny that.  But, it is more accurate to say that it is one of several outlets for creativity as it pertains to the farm.  Without that creativity, the farm becomes a dead place with no opportunities for improvement.  And, if we do not dream, the farm and its work could become dull and lifeless - not the job description that would entice me to stay on for more.

And, so, we dream about how we will do things differently in the next year.  We review and report on what has happened in the prior year and learn from it.  We read and discuss with others so we can collect new perspectives and ideas.  And, most importantly we plan for how we will make the coming year something to view with anticipation, rather than with trepidation.

(to be continued - part 3)

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