Monday, December 31, 2012

Little Things- Revisited

Do you remember way back when I decided to jump on the naming bandwagon and determined that 2012 was to be the year of The Little Things? Oh, if only I'd known then what I know now.  This has been a year of big things - gifts, changes, losses, growth - it all seems so much.

Of course, I'm aware just like you are, that fully present in the big things are myriad of little things.  And, I think that's part of why it's been a good exercise for me to adjust my focus from the wide take it all in angle and zoom in on detail.

We haven't changed that much.  We still struggle with bringing our projects totally to completion.
 What about you - do you agree that most of the time mostly done is done enough?  I mean, what's the line?  I finally (after three years of folks driving past our country home and having a peep show into every window), have drurtains- yes, you read that right - a hybrid of drapes and curtains on most of the windows in the house.  Sure, they're hung with plumbing hardware and I wouldn't try and fool 'ya into thinking they're a fancy job.  Made from drop cloths and table cloths they are.  And, they would rocket to the top of Nester's class from stray pins that remain after truly, intentionally, and with wild abandon having mistreated those windows to a "t"!

Taken to a point, are the window mistreaments done?  Technically, no.  Do they cover the windows, insulate, and look real purty?  Fer shure.

So, which way do you lean?  Are they done?  Can I cross them off the project list?  Or, should I yield to the more particular types who might push me a little further, to the point of actually threading up the sewing machine and dedicating space on my dining room table to finished seams?

Hmmm- this isn't exactly how I saw this post coming together in my head.  I'm highly distractable like that.  It grew dark while I typed, and I drew the drurtains across the windows, and there ya' go...I'm onto something unplanned.

If we haven't changed that much, it means we still live each day with optimism, enuthusiasm, and hope for a better future.  We still take on huge projects.  Like our pole barn.  I alluded to it in the 31 Days of Green Acres series.  Weekend Farmer Husband finished up in the garden, set up our final round of Freedom Ranger Chickens, and took on what felt like another whole house renovation.

In fact, our pole barn is just 200 sq. feet smaller than our home - for perspective, my living room is just a little over 200 square feet total, so it was like taking on the whole house except that one room.  It was just a shell, metal walls and roof covering a dismal dirt floor.  It now has a concrete floor, electricity, a ceiling, walls, high speed internet, insulation, lighting, a wood stove, doors, windows - phew!  Lots of ibuprofen and countless hours later he's not done, but the space is delightfully useful.  We can hardly believe how much it has positively impacted our life and our gratitude cup overflows.

Have we massaged the little things enough to be more timely on a consistent basis? Yes.
Have we sent out Christmas cards?  No.
Have we done a much better job at training ourselves to complete all the steps of cleaning up after a meal?  Yes.
Do we remember to take the compost and trash out every time?  No.
For those of you concerned about our habit of leaving doors open we're about 50/50 on that challenge.  Yup, still a growth area.

I don't want to miss it in all the prattle going on here - the little things really do morph into the big things don't they?  Or maybe it's the other way around.

Like, when Weekend Farmer Husband lost his job, that was big.  Really big.  But, God in his favor towards us, granted us months of little moments together.  Some of those moments were really awful - big arguments just boiling over and us behaving badly in light of grief, uncertainty, and turmoil.  But the little phrase, "Please forgive me" built bridges and restored hurts, and we found the time together grew more consistently pleasant, something to be savored and preserved as we continued to pursue eventual re-employment.

We raised lots of animals and found our way through big challenges produced by extreme weather.  Drought is a powerful master and although it is no little thing, it was in the end paying attention to details that allowed us to interpret how the animals were faring, respond to their needs, minimize suffering from soaring temperatures, and provide our customers with the best product we know how to produce.

I missed him in a million little ways, and when we released our firstborn son it was a big step.  Little by little we were able to change our perspective from how much we missed him to how much he was enlarging from his time away.  He returned to us, and lots of little changes add up to a big shift.  He came home a man.

It's no little thing that Weekend Farmer Husband is back to work. He has big challenges ahead and we have to relearn the myriad of little things we need to do in a day to serve him and encourage him in his role of faithfully providing for the life we lead.

So, for always gravitating toward the big picture, we slowly prove ourselves capable of sweating the small stuff when appropriate.

I don't plan to "name" 2013.
I plan to wait in expectation for and then participate in what comes.
And, I hope you'll come.  Back here, that is.
Because whatever it is, little or big, it is made so much more worthwhile when I know you're with me.
I write.
You read
If I've done it well, these symbols on a screen welcome you every time.
And so, together, we journey.

Blessing to you friend as we close 2012, and step with gratitude and boldness into 2013!

Psssst- If you send me a message AND your address, I'd be delighted to send you a Christmas card with the above photo...that is, when I get to them! xoxo


  1. We'll have to have a conversation about "when is done done" since that would make way too long of a comment. Lovely read....enjoyed the pics as usual and the curtain idea is wonderfully unique. I still love the curtain deal in your room.

    1. well now dear Kerrie, that conversation should include lingering cups of steamy coffee, your children playing with mine, and mutual encouragement, yes?

  2. Wonderful family photo! Happy New Year to you!

    1. Good morning, Bree! So glad that you took time to come visit. Happy New Year to you too, and I trust your tribe of many men is prospering along with you, their lovely momma. :-)