For everything there is a season

Saturday, September 24, 2011

It was just a small hole....

I noticed it while I was up on the mountain checking the pigs.  What caught my attention was the damp ground along the road. There it was a little hole in the water line no bigger than the head of a sewing pin. It was so small!

Here at Polyface we have a gravity fed water system that comes from ponds built up on the mountain to collect run-off water.  There is a one inch diameter pipe that runs down the mountain from these ponds.  This pipe is positioned on the uphill side of the road so that if there are any leaks the water will run down onto the road and can be easily detected. Pretty clever!

Most leaks can be easily fixed, but this morning I had a problem. The little hole had drained the system faster than it could be filled up at the ponds and had broken the vacuum in the water line. As a result, the pigs did not have any water to drink.  Okay, I'll stop there and not bore you with “water system details.”

The cool thing about this whole event was that Joel Salatin was able to take the time walk me through the process of restarting the system.  He was very patient to answer my questions and describe how the water flow worked. We shut off some valves and started the system refilling again. By the time Joel had to leave that morning to catch a flight to his next speaking tour he had taught me enough about the system that I was able the finish the process by myself.  

Looking back on that morning, it made me think about the many parallels I could see in my own life. How many times have I noticed "little things" in my life that I didn't fix right away, only to later have them effect a bigger part of my life in a negative way.

I find that these "little things" or "signals" can take the form of procrastination, lack of attention to details, a strain in a relationship, etc. These issues, though sometimes seemingly insignificant, can be a "drain" on my life and effect my interactions with those around me. Why does it seem so easy for us to ignore these little warning lights?

It has been said, "indecision IS a decision."  I am challenged by this phrase to make the RIGHT decision and take care of the little problems that come up in my life before they became big ones. With God's help I want my life to stay as full and "flowing" as possible so that I am able to be a blessing to others.

Below are some pictures I took the morning I fixed this water problem.

A pig drinker that is hooked up the water system.

One of the many valves along the water line

You can barely see the small hole in the center of this pipe.

One of the five ponds on the mountain.

A 300 gallon water tank that is part of the system

Another pond!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Field Day

July 9th was the big Polyface event of the year. About seventeen hundred people came to the farm for an all-day opportunity to hear Joel, Daniel, and a few others talk about the farm, get a tour and enjoy an incredible lunch.

We started chores at five in the morning in order to be done and ready before the guest came in full force. Cars started rolling in at 5:30am and kept coming till around ten.

Many former Polyface interns and apprentices came to help out with this big event. It was fun to meet them and hear about their time on the farm and what they are doing now. My former roommate from Florida, Ethan, was able to come in to help. Since leaving Polyface, he has been working on a ranch in Idaho and is enjoying the cowboy lifestyle.

All in all it was a fun day and I enjoyed talking to many people who have the same farming desire as myself.

Below are a few pictures from the day.  Enjoy!

Stephen, getting the truck ready for the "big day".

The book tent for Acres magazine. Acres handles all the registration and payment for Field Day.

Hungry? we cooked 800 halves of chicken, two hogs, and one whole beef (cow) for the big lunch that was served. There where over sixteen hundred attendees for the event.

This kind of grilling takes a lot of charcoal !

My first roommate, Ethan and I.
"Forget the pastry brush and bring out the floor mop, we've got a lot of chicken to cover !"
Don't worry, it was a new mop. But that IS what we used to put on the marinade.

Sarah Joy and mom getting ready to serve lunch to the multitude. Serving with a smile!

We enjoyed a fun Sunday morning breakfast and fellowship after chores were done. Eggs, pancakes, and sausage...YUM!
Sunday evening some of us got together and did some music and hymn singing.