We enjoyed our 50th high school class reunion yesterday. Back then we still had shop classes in high school. Those are sadly gone now. In our metal shop classes most of the guys did various recommended projects. I made art. And it somehow infected me all these years later. I still make art for placing around the farm. When I was younger, I was obsessed with work. But only seven days a week, dawn till dark and then a couple hours after dark. Fortunately, I learned its better for soul and family and wife to make more time for other things in life. For me, one of those things is art.
If you take the time to make piles of stones, or stone circles, or do some stained glass, or disassemble some "dead" farm equipment and then stick some of the parts back together with welds or rivets, or make wind chimes from colored glass or metal scraps, or paint murals on buildings, you can create interesting little discoveries for people when they come visit. And you may find a side of yourself you didn't know you had. And the sounds it makes is so nice. And the colors. And movement. ....And it's just plain nice to do some things of the heart instead of always from the head or back.
Plus, it's a great lesson for the kids. We homeschool, and my second crop of children watch me weld and create things and they really want to do projects themselves. So they make art themselves (sorta like I did in the long gone shop classes). They make fiber baskets, and wind chimes, and arrange flowers, and are forever collecting stones, and constantly walk off with my tools to use to make their own things. I don't just teach them to weld the baler, they make the heart stuff also. And the farm and they are the better for it.
--P.S. We are looking for people to join us here. As farm mates, or partners, or short term sojourners, or wwoof'ers, etc. We have the farm with lots of animals and many gardens, a 19th Cent. museum with 41 buildings we moved arranged as a village, and we run a heritage skills school with lots of classes in soap making, cheese making, fiber arts, herb use, blacksmithing, and etc., ....and art. We love visitors. Send a PM, let's talk. We especially are looking for individuals or families with young children (Ours are 9, 6, 4, 1 1/2). See my profile for more info. --Make some art. It may last a whole lot longer than that fence you just simply must get done today.
Creating sustainable life, beauty & food (with lots of kids and fun)
I think living on a homestead can allow a person to express their heart - by living the way they feel most in tune with their natural world around them - and their soul - in various ways including artwork. I'm considering a house based on Oehler/Wofati design, and I often visualize things like carving details into the beams, or sculpting details into the cob of a rocket mass heater or interior cob wall coating. If the site would support their growth, I was thinking willow shoots that are planted to grow as supports for a south-facing bermed greenhouse (Oehler style), that I could place glass/plastic over in winter to improve the winter temps, and then remove to allow the space to breath in the summer heat. They could be grown and woven to create outdoor spaces as well, little shady spots facing a great view for some chairs for example.
Getting in touch with your inner whimsy, and expressing it freely, can be an important part of a happy life.
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It's like binging on 7 seasons of your favorite netflix permaculture show