Thursday, 16 March 2017

Us selfish smallholders

Hi Everybody.
I'm sat here making my daily list of things that must be done today, those that I will do if I have time, phone calls and emails to that I must make, what we are having for dinner tonight and how many will be here for that and adding to the shopping list for when I go to the shops next ( I shop approx. twice a week)
I do this each day as I am not organised by nature and it helps me to use my time well (and I do love a good list!)
I lead a pretty busy life and realise that I can come over as smug because of this. I think smugness is something smallholders lean towards. "Look at us aren't we good?.. saving the planet, living a good life, cooking good food, not eating junk and generally being more interesting and better than some!
 This is the life we chose (which isn't for everybody thank goodness as there isn't enough land to go round!) and because it is a way of life it can be all consuming and can make us SELFISH!!. What do we do for others? Do we find time to look outside our "rural idyll" at those who are frailer, struggling, in need? I suppose I mean in a proactive face-to-face way. For example, giving to charity shops, while absolutely necessary for those charities, is still a rather passive way to help and let's face it is a way of getting rid of stuff you don't need (which is hardly philanthropic) so I don't think it counts! While taking half an hour to call on (or phone) a lonely neighbour, helping out at a local luncheon club, delivering leaflets for a local cause or maybe walking a dog for someone temporarily incapacitated is giving of your most valuable asset.. time and takes you out of yourself for a little while.
So there is my thought for the day... not that you asked for it!
Goodness what a random post.
PS Welcome to Pauline Williams on the follower bar and Kathy on Bloglovin. Good to see you here x


  1. The problem with a smallholding is that there is ALWAYS a job list waiting.
    I tended to smugness with selling eggs and veg and thinking how many people we were supplying with good quality stuff......Self sufficiency has a lot to answer for.

  2. I like your blog and never for a moment felt you were being smug. I received a phone call this morning from a lady in one of the groups I'm in and she spoke for about half an hour. I was itching to get back to my sewing but let her talk away. In the course of the rather one sided chat, she told me that she is having to wait several months to have her hearing aid replaced as she lost the previous one. More importantly, she told me that she is aware that her short term memory is going. I asked why she had phoned me out of all the people on her contacts list and she said, "it's because you always answer and listen to me rambling". I felt very humbled by that and not a little teary! Keep on telling us about your days and best wishes to your son as he recovers. Catriona

    1. Ignore that last bit-senior moment. Sorry. Catriona

  3. Surely, it's all about choice. Some chose to sit at home all day and watch Jeremy Kyle, others like to get their hands dirty digging the Veg' plot (as I'm doing at the moment). I see no smugness.

  4. Surely it is just a different lifestyle you lead, the 'selfishness' comes because you are doing something for youself. The terminology of self-sufficient of course leads others to think differently. Two magazines I take, Resurgence and Permaculture immediately classifies me in the eyes of visitors as 'green' and ready to argue the toss...

  5. Is it smug if it's true though? We do have better bread, fresher eggs, healthier veg, heartier meals, busier lives (and therefore more interesting) and the list goes on and on..

  6. You make a good point. It's tough because the lifestyle is so demanding of time, which points to the fact that a true agrarian lifestyle necessitates community. Agrarian communities socialize around helping one another get huge jobs done - barn raising, fence mending, canning, etc. If one's local geographical community isn't interested, then it's more a sense of isolation than selfishness. I used to volunteer to help at my local food coop, but the time and the drive meant home things got neglected. I find I end up serving my critters and my land more than I do others; but I'm always available to babysit my granddaughters if their parents need a break. :)

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