So this week I have busied myself picking mulberries, picking peas, and enjoying Olivia’s first t-ball game. With the exception of t-ball, there is a fair amount of time to think. When my hands are busy, but my mind free to wonder… all sorts of things are possible. The thoughts are random and usually grand. In those moments I see a crystal clear path for my business’ success. It is not until I am trying to clean my mulberry-stained hands that reality kicks in. I keep dreaming though because one of these times I can’t help but think it will all come together.
As much as my business is struggling at the moment it is better than where I was one year ago. One year ago I was employed full time in a job I knew was coming to an end, trying to grow my business in the hopes of a soft landing…and fighting everyone connected to both. I spent so much energy in the name of helping others… even as it was hurting me and my family and my business…only to have those I was helping betray me. It left me angry and resentful, distrusting, and emotionally exhausted. I am unafraid to say it…. seriously depressed. I am still working on the forgiveness I need to extend others and the only way I will ever get there is on my knees. For those of who are of faith, I could seriously use your prayers to help me find my forgiving heart. The outcome of everything, I now work for L’Ecuyer Gardens/ Farms. The clarity is amazing. The dreams are big. The need is huge… given that, how can this possibly fail?
My garden is in a lull and all I can do is wait for things to begin to ripen. As I wait… I worry. It has not rained in quite some time and the hot dry wind we have experienced also has my husband worried. His crops are not like mine, they cannot be easily watered. Young plants emerging from the ground fail to flourish in the face of these strong, hot dry winds. There is not much he can do. Even with my crops, it has been too windy to effectively water and that is a problem. All of the tender, young plants I planted last week are struggling. We have had chances of rain for several nights and the rains keep skirting up around us.
For many, I know the weather is of little interest, but to a farmer it is both your best friend and your enemy. We have not had anything that resembles normal weather this calendar year and it makes it hard to know what to do. This is clearly one of those give it God and move on scenarios. My Autie has prayed for rain so sweetly the past few nights. As she put it…”God we need some rain. It did not rain today, and it did not rain yesterday or on the third day. We need some rain. Can you send us some?” My prayer is a little different…”Lord please hear my Autie’s prayer.”
I have picked a bunch of mulberries this week and my girls and I will be back at it tomorrow. My hands are stained and so is at least one shirt. You should never pick mulberries wearing white. J I knew better so I can’t complain. Believe it or not my mulberries are a top seller and I know some of you are mystified by that statement. I think it is a simple pleasure. Many of us fondly remember the childhood mulberry tree that was nearby. We were not to go there… but we did every chance we got. The mulberries remind my customers of a time when sneaking mulberries was fun and buying my baskets provides my customers with the simple pleasures of a fond memory and a sweet treat that is actually good for you. I am indulged with a few dollars of income and time as a pick to try and figure out how to create a business that will be a blessing to my family.
Today I have several deliveries and I am trying to decide if an email newsletter would be good for my business. My ability to grow my business depends on more weekly deliveries. As the farmer, marketer and delivery person my time is so seriously divided that I need to find ways to work smarter and not harder. I am interested in your thoughts as to how to make my business easier to connect with.
Part of making this work is making it work for everyone in my house and things like t-ball are as important as anything. I think that is the constant guilt of all mothers. We need/want to work, but we need/want to be there for the important things…like watching my Livie draw figure eights in the dirt at the catchers’ mound last night. She said she feels mean tagging the other girls as they come home. That’s my Livie…a heart of pure gold.
I am sharing my worries with you because many of us are facing similar stresses. Many of us are trying to figure things out as we try to re-find our prosperity. Personally, I think our path back to prosperity is for more of us to get back to what really matters. We need to simplify our lives and take pleasure in simple things...Neighbors who pop in unannounced ... sneaking a fresh picked strawberry from the garden ... or concentrating our energy on how to make ourselves more of a blessing to those who are in our lives. We are ALL going to have to dig deep and blaze new trails, but we can get there. So I have to ask… in what way can I be a blessing to you?v