Smaht Fahm

  (Medina, Ohio)
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The House That Jack Built?

On a fahmstead, nothing is simple.  Oh sure, you might be thinking about the gentle quacking of ducks, cooing of the chickens, buzzing of the bees, but that all takes work to accomplish.  Some of the work is planned, like maintenance chores, but a lot of the work pops up and can rarely be predicted.  Often this work is intertwined with other tasks.  It's a little frustrating, but I love hard work and the feeling of accomplishment.

For example, the top of our driveway in front of the barn is a mess: there's a table, fire pit, propane tanks, bits of wood and gutter, etc. strewn in front of the doors from recent projects and the turkey harvest.  We don't love that it's there but there's only so much daylight and time. It's so bitter cold by the time I finish a project (shorter daylight hours), I tend to work to the last minute until I can no longer feel my extremities.  Yesterday was warm-ish (for New England) and sunny, so I decided to clean the area up. As typical, I couldn't do that until I did another task, and so on and so on. In order to put the propane tanks and table away, I needed to make space in the barn.  The barn is crowded because the boys toss their bikes in, there's extra straw bales with no home (waiting for the ducks to settle into their new pen before adding more straw), a cage for two culled birds and a giant brooder pen for the baby chicks.  The hose bib popped during a recent freeze which flooded the barn floor, so stuff got tossed around trying to clean up that mess.

There was too much clutter from empty water holders that are unused in the winter.  The animals have water heaters on their supplies during winter, so all of the waterers stack up in the barn until spring.  I decided to build some wooden shelves I'd bought for organizing.  I opened a unit up, only to discover there was no hardware.  I opened another unit up, stole the hardware, put the shelves together and realized I had to fight through the bikes, lawnmower, tiller, etc. to clear space for them.  When that was cleared, I put the waterers on the shelves and was amazed at how much clutter I'd just cleared!  I removed the cage and cleaned it.  I swept the floor and organized the straw bales again.  A customer came by for eggs and we chatted.  Then it was time to go pick up son #3 from preschool. There's still so much more to organize/clear in the barn, no room for the stuff outside yet.

End result, typical result...the cluttered area in front of the barn that I had originally wanted to clear is STILL not cleared.  I can't decide if it's ADD or just typical life on a fahmstead.

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