Ever wonder why farms often appear cluttered? Honestly, I have wondered exactly that in the past. Without any personal experience, I settled on the conclusion that the “country” must be the birthplace of hoarding. But now I understand that it takes a lot of stuff to operate a farming lifestyle.
Perhaps many would have recognized this fact as they witness me drive from the feed store with bales of hay crammed into the back of my SUV while the owners point and giggle. Or at some point during the hour it took me to vacuum the hay out of the vehicle. Call me “slow”, but the clarity came to me during a conversation with the owner of a tow hitch company. You see, I called to inquire on the cost of getting a tow hitch put on my Audi Q5. The owner listened intently and then simply said, “No ma’am. It’s not that I don’t want your money, but you just need to buy an old truck.”
Of course, that was when the flood gates opened. After that epiphany, I learned:
1. My chickens needed to live in a brooder box before they are old enough for their coup.
2. My garden must be completely fenced in unless it was my intent to grow produce for the limitless wildlife in the area.
3. I should not expect my garden to flourish without at least a 100-gallon composting device.
4. Installing a rain barrel will preclude me from having to haul water to the goats and chickens twice daily.
5. A burn pit was the best way to get rid of the large volumes of yard debris that would continue to build up as I began to manicure the property.
6. The requisite John Deere tractor was the only way that I could even attempt to cut the yard and paddocks.
7. My garage was always home to a sports car and bikes and now there are numerous large metal containers each holding 50+ pounds of chicken, goat or horse feed, along with deworming powder, fly spray, and riding gear.
Our next challenge will be creating an equestrian riding arena and I plan to double the size of the garden.
So, those who know me may be wondering if I have hung up my “minimalistic hat” for good. The answer is that I am learning to strike a balance without compromising on what brings me peace. The austerity of my minimalist esthetic was really about the serenity that I found in the lack of clutter. There is calmness in “everything has a place and everything in its place”. Although, there are a tremendous number of moving parts in our new agrarian lifestyle, we don’t have to sacrifice order. I decided to simply dial in to the positive aspects of how minimalism makes me feel and manifest that thorough order and design. What is the emotion that your esthetic conjures and how are you manifesting that in your lifestyle?