Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Trial and error

My whole life seems to be in constant change. In the garden it's trying new methods, repositioning where I grew last season's vegetable varieties; on the farm it's introducing new animals, new hatching/birthings; on the maintenance front it's trying new nesting boxes, changing which poultry live in the orchard, moving paddocks to suit the seasons...

It's all about watching what's working. At the moment, the geese have left the orchard and made nests all around the place.  I'm watching the grass grow longer and longer.  Our orchard fence has gaps where chooks can squeeze out so my latest plan is to do some fence repair and let my dorking chooks in there to keep some of the grass down. I don't want them to get out of the fence or they'll make their way to the veggie garden. Hopefully when the goslings hatch, the geese will return to the orchard because they do an amazing job of the grass! We haven't needed to cut it once since the geese came to live.
The paddocks need to be in the right place to suit the season. In late winter and spring I want the animals keeping down the bush on the west to reduce our fire hazard. Then in summer, when the vegetation stops growing, it's time to move them to the shade on the east side of the hill for their comfort.

I'm often reminded of the first principle of permaculture, observe and interact, as I think about what's happening and make changes accordingly. No area in our lives is exempt from this process. Not even my children's progress.

I've been loving my children being at home with me but have recently realised that I'm concerned that it's not working so well for Buddy. He learns differently to the girls and needs more guidance. I don't seem to find enough time to teach him well. As a result of that realisation, we are trialling our special school. I've always thought that, if he was educated conventionally, he would go to mainstream. However, with our lifestyle of the children being with me, they get plenty of 'real life' experience and special schools offer some advantages that mainstream can't. They have small class sizes which benefit the children, therapy and flexibility. 
We are going to trial Buddy attending two days a week and spending the rest of the time here with me. He spent the day at the school yesterday and loved it! I felt a tad guilty too when I discovered how much I enjoyed the time without him. It was quiet and peaceful. While he's generally so good and helpful, I wasn't aware that I live in a constant state of low lying stress because I'm always on guard 'in case'. You mothers of toddlers would identify with this feeling. You always need to be alert.

So for now we watch, assess and decide later if we've made the right decision. And try to stay calm and contented as we live our lives in a constant state of flux.

10 comments:

Jennathepiglady said...

So true that sometimes we just need to try things and see if they work for us. At least that way we don't have regrets about never giving it a go! Hope it works out well for Buddy :)

Lynda D said...

My Aspie son is now 18 and still i watch "on guard" all the time. He's on the computer with others online and im listening to his conversations with them. Later i might give him guidance on how he could handle social situations differently. Sometimes they goad him to anger and its obvious to me that he goes exactly where they want him to go. I tell we have to be aware, think before acting, take time out (just say you have to go to toilet) so you have time to respond appropriately. All this while im apparently watching TV in the next room. He sometimes tells me i love him too much. Oh Dear.....

Selina B said...

just caught up with you again
your place sounds wonderfully busy, can't wait to see pictures of all the baby animals too!
all the best with buddy, hope he keeps enjoying it.
thanx for sharing

Cheryl said...

Good luck with it all Linda, and you are so right about permaculture principles applying not just to the farm!

narf7 said...

I don't think you need to feel guilty for enjoying some time alone. If Buddy is loving his new school it is a win-win situation I am thinking! We are juggling the property, TAFE, animals that want to go feral and feral animals that want to join the fray on a constant basis here this spring. It seems like everyone and everything wants our attention but in the end, you have to watch and learn just like you share with us here. Watch and learn what works and make sure that you head in that direction. Cheers for the share :)

Chris said...

I'm sure I left a comment here yesterday, Linda, did it automatically go into your spam folder for moderation? :)

Linda said...

Thanks Jenna, just taking it slowly and if it doesn't seem right I'll re-assess. So far I'm impressed.

You have to be Lynda! It's up to us. And yes, we all love our kids too much! Lol

Thanks Selina. There's so much anticipation with so many babies due but none here yet!

I often see that the principles can be applied across the board Cheryl. A good guiding set of principles!

Narf, it can get so messy with the animals can't it! We have one breed of chooks that border on wild and would go feral if we let them.

Chris, I couldn't find a comment in The spam folder but it was an interesting exercise! I'd never looked for my spam folder before. What on earth is male enhancement underwear and no, I don't want a loan or help promoting my blog!!!

Kate said...

Buddy is looking so grown up. As I've mentioned before i am in awe of what you are doing with your children and your farm. If Buddy's happy at schoolit's win /win. Love what you do. xx

Fiona from Arbordale Farm said...

Linda I think it is great that Buddy can attend a few days a week. Like you said his needs are different and as long as he is happy and developing that is all you need. Don't feel guilty about enjoying the clear head space you need that time so that when he is with you you can give him your best too.

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