One of the things I love about our farm life is enjoying the fruits of our labor. Tonight for dinner we had two of our own roosters roasted to perfection. For dessert we had Raspberry and White Chocolate Fudge Brownies made from our own raspberries and eggs. A year ago I could only imagine the benefits of living on a farm. Now I enjoy those benefits at almost every meal.
We are currently planning our garden and livestock for the spring. Now that I understand that we can really grow food and then eat it I am excited to provide as much for ourselves as I can. My garden increases in size every time I go to the store and buy something only to realize that I could grow this myself. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, lots and lots of tomatoes, green peppers, strawberries, lettuce, cauliflower, broccoli, cucumbers, radishes, carrots, turnips, asparagus... The list grows and grows. It's a good thing we have a really large yard and four children. Lots of space and lots of hands to help.
Each time we eat one of our own roosters the memory of the harvest slips away. The benefit of cost and pleasure now make the labor and gross factor grow fuzzy. Maybe 100 roosters isn't such a bad idea. Maybe we should try more.
As we savor the fruits of our labor during the lull of winter it's easy to lose sight of the labor that produced those fruits. It's easy to feel is if it is all as simple as opening the door to the freezer and selecting what we want. It's easy to overlook the real man hours involved in each bite of chicken and each raspberry in our brownies. It's hard to reign in our enthusiasm and vision with reality.
Last year was our year of intense learning. This year is our year of serious planning. We will continue to savor the labor and the results and pray that we can find a balance for the two.