Hi, It’s Been a While

26 Aug

Hi there.

It’s been a while.

In the wake of motherhood and the ease of Facebook and Instagram—where I do a much better job of documenting our life—this blog has taken a backseat. Well, let’s be honest. It’s way past the the backseat and is bumping along on the tailpipe of a cattle trailer by now.

For me, the ability to write is like a muscle. It needs movement, stimulation, exertion, but it can too easily become flaccid with disuse. The longer I wait, the harder it is to whip myself back in shape.

But as I sit in our kitchen, tea in hand, looking out onto a whispering sea of green corn stalks, it sure feels good to be writing.

Something.

Anything.

I have to be honest, writing isn’t coming as easily to be as it used to. When life is full to the brim it can be difficult to find the words to start.

But it’s important. We are doing something of great consequence with our lives (and no, Dairy Man, I’m not just talking about adding cows to the herd) and I miss having the opportunity to share that consequence.

So, how have we been?

Well, let’s start with the reality that I have a 16 MONTH OLD. I’m not quite sure how that happened. Someone hand me a tissue.

Anders-lives-at-home

The last time we talked, Anders had just learned to army crawl, was sporting two teeth, and had just started baby food.

Anders-8-months

Um, people, things have changed a lot since then.

Now he can walk (or run). He can climb. He has 10 teeth. His vocabulary and repertoire of animal sounds are growing every single day. He repeats everything we say. He loves flipping through dairy magazines. He eats just about everything, from blueberries and spinach soup to Pad Thai and shrimp paella. He’ll try anything with bacon but can’t seem to get down with tomatoes.

Anders-Jersey_Sudangrass

He loves walking through the barns and waving to his “moos.” He’s not at all afraid of cows. And did I mention he knows the difference between a “tuck” (truck) and a “tra-trac” (tractor)?

Dairy Man is so proud. We have a regular dairy boy in the making.

Anders-and-the-moos

As you all know, there have been a few times (ok, a lot of times) where I have lamented my transplant to this country wilderness. It’s not easy to cope with the isolation, the long hours of farming, or the fact that the nearest Target is 45 minutes away. But I’m starting to take more joy in this life as I see it through the eyes of child.

I think we’re going to have a lot of fun here.

Anders is a blank slate. Everything is new to him, but he is becoming more fully aware of this unique place in which we live. He’s going to grow up amongst our bovine roommates and jaw-dropping sunsets. He’s going to build forts in the barn, take care of calves, and ride along with Daddy in the tractor.

Anders_Sudangrass

As we prepare for The Season of Impending Doom …er… I mean “corn harvest,” this year, I can’t help but notice how different it feels.

Last year Anders was still a helpless babe. I was at my wits end trying to juggle work, a baby, and everything else in our lives while seeing only glimpses of Dairy Man for a number of weeks. Did we eat? Did the sheets get washed? I can’t even remember.

But now that Anders is older and our lives have settled into a more predictable rhythm, I actually look forward to introducing him to farm life.

This year we can visit Dairy Man in the fields. We can watch the corn chopper from our back deck. He might even get to ride in a tractor.

I think this will reawaken the novelty of our farm life.

Sometimes I feel like it’s hard to write about something I’ve become so used to. Farm life is still filled with oddities; I don’t quite fit in. But so many of the abnormalities have become mundane. I don’t even notice anymore.

No dinner till 8? Totally normal.
Husband’s clothes covered with caked-on manure? Just don’t sit on the couch. 
Tractor parked in my driveway? Old hat.
Incessant mooing coming from the barn on the hill? Just another Tuesday.
Dinner conversation about bull semen? Pass the green beans.

At some point, unbeknownst to me, I morphed into a farm wife. It’s like turning into a werewolf at midnight but with less body hair and more corn kernels in the laundry. I still don’t bake pies, milk cows, or wear a gingham apron, but this crazy life has become my real life.

I still struggle with single-parenthood and frustration with the farming schedule, but I can tell we’re going to have a lot of fun with Anders on the farm. He’s going to be a farm boy before I know it.

I just hope I have a few more years before he comes home covered in manure.

Anders-and-mom

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22 Responses to “Hi, It’s Been a While”

  1. Jordan Hansen 08/26/2015 at 9:50 am #

    “Dinner conversation about bull semen? Pass the green beans.” Made me laugh out loud. How casually we throw around the word “semen” in our house — and have to watch ourselves in mixed company! Good to see you back on your blog!

    • the Modern Farm Wife 08/26/2015 at 2:48 pm #

      Thanks, Jordan! Good to be back. And glad I’m not the only one who doesn’t bat an eye at that word anymore.

  2. Meghan Garver 08/26/2015 at 9:56 am #

    Hi there!
    Thank you for your post. I am semi-new to the farm life as well. It is very difficult to juggle, especially with little ones (I have 2 boys, 3.5yrs and 5months). It’s nice to know that the struggle is real and it’s not just me. Lol.

  3. Stevie Storck (@StevieStorck) 08/26/2015 at 10:53 am #

    Welcome back, Jessica! I’m so glad to see you are picking up blogging again, and don’t worry– if life gets crazy again (which it surely will) and you need to take another hiatus, I’ll still be here! I really enjoy reading about your “Modern Farm Wife” life because our stories are kind of opposite but still similar.

    I grew up on a farm, moved to the city for college and then moved to the suburbs when I married my high school sweetheart. My husband grew up in town and had no farming experience before he met me, but after two years of working with my Dad, he’s about to start a new job as an Operations Assistant at our local Granary. So even though I never thought I would be a farmer’s wife, we still ended up in ag!

    • the Modern Farm Wife 08/26/2015 at 2:50 pm #

      How funny that your life has come full circle! Thanks for the kind comments, Stevie.

  4. Margie 08/26/2015 at 12:02 pm #

    I love you, Jess! 😂 I follow another blog of a women about 15-20 years our senior. I’ll find you the link- she is hilarious and relishes the beauty in the smallest moments with her family😍.

    • the Modern Farm Wife 08/26/2015 at 2:50 pm #

      Thanks, Margie! I’ll definitely have to check out her blog.

      • Margie 09/29/2015 at 4:19 pm #

        terribradyblog.com
        Enjoy!

  5. slt2012 08/26/2015 at 2:10 pm #

    I love your blog! I am a towny as my other calls me. I am learning the farming life and have done things id never of dreamed of. Then theres the wellies on and off so many times in a day. I await your next blog.
    Stacey x

  6. slt2012 08/26/2015 at 2:13 pm #

    I love your blog. I am a towny as my other half calls me. 3yrs in and learning the farming lifestyle and weather watching everyday. I await your next blog.
    Thanks Stacey x

  7. Sophie 08/26/2015 at 3:43 pm #

    Love this! I was reminded of your blog yesterday when someone replied to a feed I had commented in. Love how you’ve just settled into farming life.. I’ve been living with my farmer boyfriend for a year now and I also seem to have just settled, help with moving the cows, loving our 3 little hens and Laugh at my previous nieave comments about such farm work etc etc!!
    May the love of the land continue
    Many blessings x

  8. Holly Moon 08/26/2015 at 10:08 pm #

    Love the update, Jessica! You certainly haven’t lost your ability to write!!

  9. Emily 08/27/2015 at 7:53 am #

    As a Soon-to-be farm wife, I really enjoyed and appreciated this post! It’s nice to feel like you’re not the only one and it gets easier 🙂

    • the Modern Farm Wife 09/14/2015 at 9:30 am #

      Somehow we do get used to the craziness, Emily. Best wishes in your upcoming marriage!

  10. postivelydashing 08/29/2015 at 8:08 am #

    As always, dear student and friend, you have a gift for engaging the reader. Keep the story rolling–both on and off the page.

  11. Alyssa 09/01/2015 at 11:19 am #

    I’m so glad you’re back!

    I don’t know if you remember, but some months back (when my now fiance was just my boyfriend) I wrote to you unsure of how I would move forward into this life I knew little to nothing about. You gave me wonderful advice and I’m so glad to say I took it 🙂

    My DM just purchased his very own 10 baby calves to raise and eventually milk. I think my heart might burst open from pride!

    Thank you thank you thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for sharing your life with us so that I might find my way a little easier in this crazy world of hayfields and mooing.

    • the Modern Farm Wife 09/14/2015 at 9:33 am #

      What a great story, Alyssa! I’m glad you are happy with your decision. And congrats on the 10 cows! Keep an eye on them; they have a way of mysteriously multiplying… 😉

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