This week marks four years since we purchased the farm. Four years of dreaming, planning, working, worrying, planting, harvesting. Four years of awe, frustration, simple successes, a few failures. Four years of family, playing, joy, longing, and missing.
For me, it's been four years of discovering a new world. The prairie and all its subtle beauty and humble and not so humble majesty. Four years of balancing my long distance work life and my little, little children growing bigger every day. Of the contrast between frontier and urban core.
I've learned the remarkable journey of the sun from solstice to solstice. Just how crazy far towards the north the sun rises in the summer and to the south in the winter. Really people- at the 45th parallel, the range of the movement of the sun as it touches the horizon is dramatic. I've gained some intuitive sense of the cycles of the moon. I can tell from glancing at the moon whether it's waxing or waning.
It still feels new to me. And maybe that is one of the secrets (or practices) of being mindful-- keeping that feeling of everyday awe. There is a freshness in exploring the large and the small-- the movements of the sun and the seeds on the prairie grass. Meeting people who are both new to me and a stable part of a community that I will meet again and again. Thinking of new ideas on the small scale of my community life vs the larger scale of my work-a-day world. And opportunities to put my shoulder to the wheel in a way that feels like I'm making a difference on the piece of soil I've been blessed to steward.
It passes fast though, doesn't it? Here's the soundtrack for this entry-- 100 Years by Five for Fighting.
I lost a friend and a colleague this week. She lived big and was taken too soon. Linda moved through the world with an easy humor, spunk, and a perspective that I hope and intend to learn from. She had a joie de vivre like few people I've known. She was elegance and grace, with a wickedly wry and impertinent humor.
At the funeral, the pastor said that the light was extinguished only because the dawn had arrived. We will meet again one day, Linda.
In the meantime, none of us know how many sunrises and sunsets we each have. I do know that my children are getting bigger everyday and that those giddy moments of blissful child's play are numbered. I know that these are the days and moments that nostalgia are made from.
Moonrise on the evening of the December Lunar eclipse. We watched-- all five of us-- this moon rise from the ground of the eastern horizon in all its reflected blazing glory as the sun set behind us. There is magic on the prairie. Come here. Hold still. Be in paradise.