Getting Back to the Land

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As the title implies, I wanted to discuss how people are getting back to the land. Personally, I have been trying to become as self sufficient as I can. I do this by reading and learning about a great array of things. I try to buy locally. Locally buying means not buying from the big box stores, but finding farmers around you that sell produce that is organic, with little or no pesticides involved. You would be surprised what you can find when you start looking around.

I also want to learn how to can food. I have always been fascinated by the art of growing and preserving the fruits (or vegetables) of your labor. As times have gotten really tight, I have found that more people are feeling these urges too. I think we should get back to the basics and share it with our kids and grandkids so these important skills are not lost.

I am a woman who was raised on the old foods from Appalachia by my grandmother. She lived the kind of life we only read about these days. The family lived off the land. Some of my fondest memories as a child involved picking beans, eating tomatoes right off the vine, and the sweetest corn on the cob I have ever tasted.  We would sit on the front porch and break beans we had picked ourselves, then my grandmother would take them in the house and cook them up for us to enjoy!

My sweet grandmother was from the hills of Kentucky. She lived during the depression and was able to build a house from the ground up if she set her mind to it.  She knew how to take nothing and make something out of it. I admired her pluckiness and her skills. She did not have a higher education but she knew more than most college graduates.

She sewed all of our clothes as we were growing up. She made our coats too. We had outfits like Doris Day did, dresses with the matching coats. She was a whiz at making clothing. Her other sewing skills included making draperies. She would make the pleats by hand and her drapes were always beautiful. As a matter of fact, her handiwork is still on display at the junior high here in my hometown. She made them all. It still amazes me at her tenacity to not only tackle such a big job, but to complete it on time and have it be so well made that it still is in use to this day.

Now that I have wandered off topic, I guess what I have been thinking about is returning to the simpler things in life. Simplifying, out of necessity, has opened my eyes to the old days when things were simple yet fulfilling. I am exploring a great many topics and I will share them with you as I discover some things others may be interested in.  Have a great day!!

busy day today

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Today was a very busy day indeed. My mother-in-law officially worked her last day yesterday in preparation for her move to Kentucky. Wal-Mart gave her a big cake, a beautiful bouquet of calalillies, a candle and a picture frame. She was surprised at the gifts for sure.

Today, our congregation gave her a farewell party. She has been in this congregation for some 49 years now so it was a pretty big deal! The food was outstanding, and lovingly made by so many of the congregation. There was a “jeopardy” type game with questions a bout my mother-in-law as well and a good time was had by all! Many of the friends brought gifts and cards. It was so precious to see how they will miss her when she moves.

Her move is truly a big one for her. You see, she has lived her whole life in our hometown. She has worked locally at several jobs but retired from them all now. She is 74. She was widowed in late 40’s. She grew up a few streets away from her current home so in essence, she only moved a few blocks in her lifetime. Now she is packing her belongings and moving 3 hours away to a brand new apartment that my sister and brother-in-law have built for her above their home. This is a big deal!

We have lived with her for some three years now so her leaving will be difficult for us as well. We now have her home and are making it ours. We are painting and bringing the house up to date. It is an adventure for us as well as her.

On to wolfie… I made it through this busy day and am sitting in the living room typing this and trying to keep my eyes open long enough to do it. I laughed so much my cheeks hurt. It was wonderful to be surrounded by so many of Christ‘s followers who exhibit love in such an unselfish way. It is beautiful to see that love extended to those around them as well. She is leaving a very special congregation for sure, but she is moving to another one that will keep her busy and happy as well.

Life can take such sweet twists and turns and shake things up a bit but deep down, as long as we are able, we should always be Christ like in our love for others in both word and deed. While sitting here in pain, it is nonetheless heartwarming to feel that special bond with others who believe as you do. Her new congregation is wonderful too. I lived dwon there and was a member for a time (while we lived there). It is filled with many others who are genuine, trust worthy and God fearing. A blessing indeed for her. They were for me and I miss them so but I am also surrounded here with the same love in the congregation I attend. Blessings from God, His congregations are a source of love, knowledge, wisdom and truth. Blessings to you all!

hibernation

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It has begun yet again. It is that time of the year when I begin the staying indoor life and very little of the outdoors life that I enjoy so much. When the weather changes, it is a wondrous thing. Seasons are lovely things. I love it when spring begins, the pushing forth of new shoots of all types of plants. The greening of trees and grass. The feelings of life beginning anew. I love spring. It is the beginning of warmer days and cool nights. People begin to emerge from their winter hibernation. Thus, the title of this blog.

Hibernation is defined as (from Merriam Webster dictionary online):

1: to pass the winter in a torpid or resting state
2: to be or become inactive or dormant
 
I have begun my winter hibernation, sooner than I wanted to. You see, after our walk for lupus, and my trip to Kentucky. I ran completely and totally out of energy. Energy to function, to get out of bed, to eat, and to do anything more than sleep. Yes, I am quite good at sleeping lately. I could be an olympic sleeper these last few days.
 
In the interest of explaining this to those who are “normal”, I will try endeavor to equate this with something you would understand.  Have you ever had a bout with the flu where you feel awful and have no energy? You have aches and pains and all you want to do is burrow under the covers and sleep? That is similar to what I have been feeling. Not quite as bad, but similar.
 
I was wondering if any other of my lupus friends are feeling the same way. This time of year seems to do that for me. The cooler weather brings on the achiness in my joints. The good old arms and legs begin to feel like rubber and useless. At times, it feel like there is an elephant sitting on my limbs and whenever I move I have to move it as well. I have also heard it explained as walking in knee deep sand underwater. Both are apt descriptions.
 
So, my hibernation seems to have begun much earlier than I anticipated. Maybe this will pass and I will be out and about feeling improved sooner. I can hope and pray for that to happen. I would love to be surprised on this point! Hope to hear how you all are coping with this season change.