There I was. I was driving my new-to-me car for the second month out of the six I’ve had—our first lemon car. And when buying this so-called new car, we opted for the Ziebart package. You know, living near Buffalo, NY, and all calls for significant rust.
The car wasn’t familiar to me at all when I brought it in for it’s annual spray. The man helping me said this to me, ” So you got the day off from work today?”
In the past I would cringe at this because I didn’t know if I was only a homemaker or I really worked from home.
Yep when I was making pennies a day . In my mind I was NOT a proud work at home parent. It took me three years raising babies and staying up all night to get my blogs where they are today.
Everyone else didn’t see it that way though. Fast forward four years and I make more money then my husband working from home! But that my friends isn’t the point of my story today.
I proudly answered the man and said, “I work from home.”
The typical lines follow, “Oh that must be so nice having your own schedule. What do you do?”
Ahh the next question I learned to answer for a fast response.
“I run a couple websites.“
And he wanted to know more. Darn. I wanted to get in an out of the situation. I tell him about my BJs Wholesale blog and then mention this exact one you are reading right now.
The Moment You’re Judged
He says,’ You Don’t Look Like a Frugal Farm Girl.”
Inside I’m giving my look of why I hate small talk but on the outside I’m practicing my manners.
I laugh politely and say, “Well, I share ways for people to save money, live debt free, and raise animals cheaper. I sure do want to tell him I can remove my foot from this worn-out Croc sandal and show you the dirt woven in so deep into the cracks of my heel that would for sure qualify me as a “farm girl.”
I sit quietly. Wishing this would be over. Also analyzing what this time talking about my site is supposed to mean if anything.
Instead he tells me all about how he used to save money with his ex wife but she didn’t want anything to do with saving money.
And now we switched from small talk to therapy.
The Question Is
Which leads me to the question: What makes someone look like a frugal farm girl?
No matter how much we try not to judge. We can’t help it. It’s in our DNA.
But how we react to our judgments that is key.
When we first moved to our farmhouse three years ago, we started with six chickens. Two days after moving in we were young and silly and let a local chicken lady sell us 25 chickens.
Twelve of them were roosters. They were meat Roosters, but we pasture-raised them. That’s why I wrote this about Roosters! 🙂 Our oldest daughter started kindergarten and told her peers we lived on a farm.
Inside I was embarrassed. Almost like the embarrassment of telling people I worked from home. Twenty-five chickens do NOT qualify us as farmers. I mean, we live surrounded by farm fields, but we are far from farming, were my thoughts.
What defines farming to you?
Is it the number of animals you own? Is it where you live? Is it how much you do yourself? Is it your family that has been in agriculture their entire lives?
If I use the word hobby farm it makes a little more sense.
My husband and I may not be actual farmers. By that I mean we aren’t making a living from anything out here. And we sure as heck aren’t “homesteaders.” I do grow my own veggies as much as possible, and raise our own chickens, but I depend a lot on retail stores too.
But this place is starting to look like what I as a city kid called a farm.
20 chickens, 3 ducks, 3 mini pigs, 2 dogs, 5 cats, 3 rabbits, and two goats! Heck that’s a farm life right?
Read: Am I in Over My Head With Animals?!
Almost like when I needed to make at least a $1,000 a month from my blog to believe I was a blogger. A work at home mom.
The point is. We need to learn to not be scared of what definition this world may give us.
Because it really doesn’t matter.
I’m not entirely sure what you would define my husband and I. I love animals and seem to keep finding them along my journey. We have the land and we like to do things efficient and as affordable as possible.
I don’t care what it defines us anymore because I’m content. I’m content in this journey in this place we are at.
And we got there by trusting God’s plan. One small step at a time.
And What does my life look like on a farm as a Not your average farm girl?
I wake up in the morning and am blessed to have another day. I get to enjoy the presence of my kids happy or grumpy for a mere hour before the bus comes. I head out to the barn to feed all the animals. A half hour later I walk along our little slice of heaven and let the dogs run.
Because the beauty in it all is the view, being surrounded by nature. Watching these animals grow and survive and getting to be a part of that.
Life on the farm brings the reality of death every day. We scramble at signs of illness hoping there is something we can do. Sometimes there is nothing.
Watching animals have the freedom of roaming around our acreage with the danger of cars, predators and illness. One minute you’re giving a cat some love and the next they are dead in the road.
The cycle of life it continues on right in front of you in a different way when you live out in the country. That’s with your own animals or not. You watch, you do what you can and you move on. It changes you. It shapes you. And it may just qualify you as a farmer.
The heartbreak. The attachments. The agony. The fact you aren’t really in control.
The key to this puzzle of joy and contentment is we get to choose to be a part of it. The moment you decide to let go and trust the plan that has already been laid out for you, the easier the path is to walk.
Doesn’t mean you won’t have to climb up hills, but with the bigger hills throughout your journey, you will be better prepared. Your calf muscles are stronger from those little hills you already climbed.
So what does life look like when you aren’t a farmer? Whatever you want it to look like. Whatever path you are called to, whatever brings you joy in this life. Find it. Go for it and do not let others define you.
You are so much more.
Sunday 1st of March 2020
Hi. I just wanted to say that you made me chuckle reading this. I believe myself to be a homesteader but not a farmer. Simply being... I have 20 acres and I raise chickens. Nothing else at this point and I'm waiting to move from this area to one that is just for my family (we currently live with my ailing FIL). Once we move, we want a few more animals (goats, cow, ducks) and to have a large-ish garden but I still wouldn't consider myself a farmer. Anyways, thanks for making me smile today. Blessings!
Monday 2nd of March 2020
Hi Connie! So happy to hear this. I love that you said a cow, because we want a cow too. Haha. That will be so exciting when you guys move and continue on this farmer like journey ;)