Stay together and don’t want too much

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When I first started this blog several years ago, my intention was to have an outlet where I could share inspirations in my life. It was partly a way to keep me motivated. It was a way for me to organize the images and thoughts surrounding my work on the farmstead.

The blog continued to grow and evolve into something much more than that. I realized that I wanted this space to be inspirational to others who were interested. I wanted people to know that they can do this too if they want. That I am just a human being who wanted to do something and so I tried to do it.

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I didn’t want this space to be filled with failures. I didn’t want this space to be filled with complaints or frustrations. But I’m realizing more and more that by only sharing the success, I’m not sharing the full picture. That by editing my life for you I am not being honest.

It’s easy to share with you my joys. And to be honest, having a collection of those joys helps me to get through the rough patches. The moments when I wonder why the heck I’m doing this at all. But I’m realizing that equally important as the joys are the fears. Being open about the reality of life is sometimes the best way to be inspirational. Despite the frustrations and the mistakes, in the end, if you are inspired and determined, you will succeed, no matter how small the success may seem.

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This past weekend the farmstead was stunning. The flowers are popping, the vegetables are bursting, at night the fireflies twinkle, making the property look like a magical fairyland jungle. But Friday, after 4th of July plans fell through, Eric and I were here by ourselves. Alone in the fairyland jungle. Saturday we worked our tails off in the perfect summer weather. I tied up 40 tomato plants that had shot up a foot from last week’s rains. I weeded the West garden. We harvested bushel baskets filled with oregano, we caught up on our other chores. At the end of the day this place looked even more stunning. And again, we were alone. It was depressing. What’s the point in working so hard when you have no one to share it with?

Our fundraising campaign is going slower than we hoped. We’re halfway through and we’re only 40% of the way to our goal. Being an artist is tough.

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When Eric and I were 19 years old we went to the Brimfield Flea Market. We came upon a lady selling heirloom quilts. My grandmother was a quilter…I mean a real quilter. She only quilted by hand. If it isn’t quilted by hand it’s called a blanket. I can’t quilt to save my life. But I make very nice blankets. Grandma instilled in me a great appreciation for the artwork of quilting. Its delicate and time consuming nature. These quilts at the flea market were marvelous. Hand quilted with tiny stitches. Beautiful patterns. I was drawn to them instantly. Of course we couldn’t afford them, and they were still under-priced. We started talking to the woman selling the quilts. We talked about my Grandmother. We talked about the fabrics. We talked about the patterns.

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She asked Eric and I how long we had been a couple.
At that point it had only been a few months.

“I’ll give you some advice,” she said. “Stay together and don’t want too much.”

Eric and I have never had a lot of money, and that’s always been okay with us. We chose this way life not for its wealth of fortune, but for its wealth of beauty, of experience. I always thought we were following her advice by not wanting too many things. But I’m beginning to realize that the quilt lady’s advice runs deeper than material wants. It also applies to aspirations, to goals, to desires. Eric and I are happiest when we are working together with a goal in mind, and not getting down on ourselves if the dream falls flat. I’m afraid I’m beginning to want too much in terms of achievement. This certainly falls under the category of wanting too much.

The quilt lady was right about everything. The quilt lady is always right.

PS Just as I was about to post this I found out my Grandmother passed away this morning. I hope she is in the sky, quilting to her heart’s content with her twin sister, her best friend in the world.

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