Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A country of our own

There is a certain amount of pride that comes from being able to provide for a family. The roof over our head doesn't leak, the kids look dapper on the first day of school, the car in the driveway doesn't have any lights flashing on the dash. We work and there it is, something to show for it. Green lawn, dog, cat, two kids. Put up a picket fence and send in our family picture to Readers Digest to congratulate us on being a home grown Canadian family.

But really, we are just leaches, a family completely reliant on our government to keep us alive. If we made ourselves a flag and declared ourselves a country, we'd be a third world country. Importing everything with no currency. I don't much like how that sits in the pit of my belly so I decided to change it.

Martin has got to be the most useful guy in the whole wide world. I have an idea, tell Martin, go to work, come home and there it is, a tilled bed for a garden. Wake up late on Saturday and why look at that, the raccoons must have made rows while I was sleeping. He is a perpetual motion machine that man. I love him for it or we'd likely be sitting on an empty lot where the house should be.

The garden gets planted and I'm as excited as can be. Probably more than a bunch of seeds in dirt warrants, but hey, this is cool. A grocery store on my lawn! As a kid I helped my mom plant the garden every year. Punishment for the stupid stuff kids get in trouble for, was to weed it. I've learned that as an 8 year old, I really didn't absorb much information back then. I'm flying by the seat of my pants, hoping stuff grows. Lucky for us, stuff is growing! Good stuff. Peas.

I heard a man speak, who knows about soils and growing crops and such things, and he said that we can't take things from the ground without earning it. Meaning we have to give something back first. Otherwise the empire on which we sit and dream to feed our family with, will wither and die like the Roman Empire. So off I go to find something to give back to these fertile soils. Just so happens, we are also growing our meat too, and they produce and abundance of fertilizer every hour of everyday. They just don't package and deliver it in handy bags. If I could get a cow to do that I'd be rich. So now the garden is coated in manure, the cows are grazing and everything is growing. Soon we will hoist our flag and declare ourselves a country.

The peas are ready now. Delicious snap peas, the ones you eat the whole pod. Making nachos? Need an onion? Wait just a minute because they are ready when you are. I think it must be my gentle love and care that makes them so good, because they are the best peas and onions I have ever tasted in my life. The tomatoes are coming along and even the peppers have bloomed. People tell me they can be finicky, so we shall see if they produce any fruit. Then the nachos will be even better. Tomatoes, onions, peppers, I smell salsa! I guess I'll have to learn how to make that too. The carrots are tiny, but I've never been one for patience so I pulled one. Once again, the best darn carrot ever. The horse likes them best. Well, he gets the tops. Soon we'll have broccoli, lettuce, beans, potatoes and corn. Add the bull to the harvest and we have a freezer full for the winter. Guess I'll be learning how to prepare veggies for freezing this fall.

I mentioned that we're growing our meat too. Well that would be just beef so far. So far. Give me time. He and his mother are grazing in the pasture keeping my not so sane horse from going completely over the edge. (He has issues) The pair are from my mom's farm, an organic beef farm. The cow is going to return home this winter and the bull will feed the starving families of, well ours and that of our friend. But a noble act indeed, so we will treat him with respect and make sure he wants for nothing, living out his days chewing his cud and swatting flies with his tail. His name is Fuzz Butt and he is royalty.

Come join us this fall for a corn boil (with the left over corn the raccoons don't take) and some BBQ steak. Our little self sufficient country does not require passports and welcomes foreigners of all sorts. We haven't decided on a name yet, but Farm of the Rising Sun or Raven Hill Farm have been tossed around.

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