“Children and Jimmy Carter ruin your best laid plans.” -Tina Fay
Chocolate Cinnamon Buns, still need to add glaze on top.
Today was a day of ruined plans… It began last night with my cast iron frying pan. Dr. Farmer Moomin, used it to produce a lovely dinner. He knows that is my go to pot. I use it for 90% of my breakfasts. We had a wonderful set of young guests who were an absolute joy to have here at the farm. Dr. Farmer Moomin, swore up and down he would clean my cast iron pot so I could make everyone my savory english muffins to go with the bacon I was planning for this morning… Well, the cleaning never happened and feeling secure in hearing him say he would do it…. I forgot all about it.
I woke up to a disaster. My best laid plans were dashed. The pot was still filthy and cleaning it was going to take some time. So it isn’t just children and Jimmy Carter, who ruin well laid plans. Dr. Farmer Moomin, is quite adept at plan ruining also when he is feeling forgetful.
Given this disaster… I opted to do some cinnamon buns instead. Chocolate cinnamon buns a new experiment. Recipe will be coming soon but for now, I just thought I would talk about how best laid plans are commonly destroyed because I am running into it a lot today.
I ended up with a giant kitchen mess I hadn’t planned for and I had book club meeting at noon. My scheduling was now a mess as I had to prep and make a whole new breakfast for the guests and for us too. It was also an experimental dish as I had never made chocolate cinnamon before. But they looked good on my computer screen, where I first came across the idea. It lead to some clumsiness and even dirtying kitchen stuff that might have been unnecessary to dirty and left me with a mess. Dinner last night clean up and this new meal I had to make from scratch as an experiment in a major hurry.
The guests finished eating and took off just in time for book club set up and prep. We had several rsvps for book club…. Only then after planning the club meeting literally a month in advance, we ran into a no show situation where only 1 person bothered to show up. Highly uncommon. Usually we have a number of people gathering for book club. So I have now slaved from 8:30 am to noon…. Only to find that those I did it all for weren’t coming. Leaving me with not just a double mess but a triple mess to clean up (and I sit here typing this and procrastinating because I really don’t want to do all that cleaning right now.)
So it has been a rough day full of well and carefully made plans all ruined today. But I am trying to stay calm and just roll with it. The chocolate cinnamon were a major success and a major hit both with Dr. Farmer Moomin, the guests, and the 1 member of the book club who came, (I love you Jen.) but they took a while longer to prepare than I had planned and made more of a mess than I had planned on for today.
I find myself feeling tired from having to patch the holes that were put in my plans, but I am not unhappy. We took a break from the mess and planned our christmas holidays, now we are watching the patriots play football, something I really don’t enjoy. Once I have a bit more of a rest, I will get up and go start processing the mess.
And that is my day. The house smells beautiful though, and the chocolate cinnamon buns came out more amazing than I could have hoped for. But really so much chaos today…. And sometimes, that is what it is to be a homesteader. Stuff doesn’t always go as planned. What do you do? You have many choices. If you want things to function, it means you must simply accept that you have to be flexible, to get the most benefit out of this homestead moment. Flexibility is a skill. One homesteaders work on with some regularity, and it can at times make or break homesteading as a lifestyle. Planning is super important. But so is that sometimes necessary flexibility when the pieces don’t come together as planned. You don’t get to lie down and give up. You can’t. Because when you do, everything falls apart. The work load involved in re-establishing function is just far more all consuming, exhausting, and high cost in energy, than that involved in making a pivot, then continuing on. So part of one’s planning as a homesteader is making sure you can always make a pivot as needed. Rigidity, can be very detrimental on the homestead.
I am going to take a half hour nap.
Thank you for reading
Amanda of Wildflower Farm
Tags: chaos on the homestead, Chocolate cinnamon buns, farm, farm blog, farm wife, farm wife blog, farmer, farming, farming in new england, farmstead, homestead, homestead blog, homestead farm, homestead wife, homestead wife blog, homesteader, homesteading, homesteading New England, inn keeper, inn keeper's blog, inn keeping, new england, new england homesteading, self sufficiency, self sufficiency homesteading, simple living, travel, whe life gives you lemons..., when plans go wrong, wildflower farm
Wildflower Farm, is a small New England homestead, B&B and AirBnB, in the Baystate. We came out here 7 years ago, when we returned from the better part of 10 years as peripatetic aristotelian nomads, for my husband's post docs. Upon our return, we had a plan. We had a lovely home. Everything was so clear. Then, I got sick. Things I used to eat all the time during our travels elsewhere in the world and even here before I left almost 10 years earlier made me ill. It took a couple trips to the ER and a trip to specialist... It became clear, something had changed in the way food is processed in this country since last I lived here. Some off label things was inevitably going to be my demise.
My husband and I looked around to see the clear path we were on, had exploded in front of us. We decided we had to create a new path for ourselves. We put children on hold. We found a small piece of land with a house we loved in a rural suburb in a right to farm area. I began researching how to do it ourselves. Grow it ourselves, make it ourselves, survive on our own as much as possible. We bought the property, and began plotting a new course. One that didn't involve off label chemicals. Closer to nature, with a lot more DIY, gardens, and animals for the products they provide. We created a life we loved though it hasn't always been easy and has of course come with compromise with each other, and even with ourselves.
Our family thought we had lost our minds. What were we doing leaving the city? We had no idea how hard this would be. They thought we would be back in 6 months. That was over 7 years ago, now. We have been making it work. They were not wrong, it isn't easy. But has anything worth doing ever been easy? And for us, avoiding as much store bought food as possible was simply necessary so I could live given how sick I was getting.
Then Covid hit.... We were lucky to have this place. It has allowed us a lot less need for public use territories which has kept us a lot safer and spared us much of the risk others face daily. This place, has given us a privilege through this of great meaning to us. To be of use in a difficult time. We have been able to help friends family and even strangers in need when things couldn't be found on store shelves. Or money was tight due to not working, rent being due and a child at home, or some other draining situation. We are so very grateful to have been able to not be helpless like so much of society through this miserable time. Our families, got used to it some time ago, us being out here. They made peace with it the day there was no bread and they had to ask me for some. Or when fresh vegies were rotten due to supply chain issues but they could find plenty in my garden.
Wildflower Farm, was a place I dreamed of. One of those sweet pastoral dreams a city dweller grows up knowing will never come true, that became unavoidable when I became ill. I never expected to get to do this. I never thought I had what it takes to make this work. I have learned pacing myself is important, compromise is critical, hard work never ends, burn out is real so breaks are just a necessary evil.
We are not fully self sufficient, but we work hard in that direction as we create a new path through life for ourselves, always reaching to do even more ourselves and to get closer to the ideal we envision. We are however far more self sufficient than many in this world. 7 years in, we continue to learn and grow in this homesteading lifestyle. We welcome comments and advice and ideas and questions.
We welcome visitors from all over to our home with strict covid policies in place. We spend our time learning to live all over again in a more environmental and sustainable way though even there we are far from perfect always learning and growing doing better as we know better.
This little homestead farm is a magical place named for the New England wildflowers that grow all around. A place where a physicist, watches the night sky on clear nights with the aide of mirror and glass, and a woman, works endlessly in the gardens, the kitchen, and a variety of projects to create and to keep a very unique life style running and functioning. Wildflower Farm, has become so much more than simply a piece of land we can grow a few vegetables on. The longer I spend here, the more alive the land seems, the more I learn about it's function and the more meaning it has. My place in the universe and the next steps on our new path become ever more clear.
We welcome you on this journey with us.