Planting Days

The author of ”The Flower Farmer” writes that anyone who hopes to be successful in this biz should learn to love planting, because it needs to happen almost every week of the growing season to keep a good succession of things blooming.

On this day, we put tons of starts in the ground, including lots of foliage like eucalyptus. 

We also put another few trays of lisianthus in the ground. I guess last year was a bad year for lisi’s on the farm, so this year Clara really doubled down (tripled? quadrupled?) on these roselike blooms. If all goes well, we’ll be swimming in ‘em soon enough.

When Pigs Go to Heaven

The hoop barn for piglets and the brooders for young birds are airy and bright and deeply bedded. After shoveling out the coop yesterday, I can confirm the chicks sleep on a mattress of wood shavings thicker and fluffier than our Tempurpedic. It smells good in here. The air moves. The pigs are friendlier than most I’ve met, skittish but curious and happy to see people.

I am a very sensitive animal lover. I also eat meat. To me, they are not mutually exclusive. The overlap occurs at places like Pasture Song Farm where the animals are given a quality of life even I envy. After the barn, most of the animals here move to pasture for the rest of their lives.

We don’t always eat meat like this and I don’t judge anyone who doesn’t source their food this way. But it matters to me, so I keep trying, keep asking questions, keep nudging my priorities and my spending in line with my values.

Bad Self Portraits

I started taking photographs when I was 7. My dad, somewhere, still has the print of a photo I took of a large, fake dinosaur at a mini golf—my first, he says. In high school I photographed my friends. I stopped shooting much in college in New York—cities don’t really inspire me. Now I can trace the ebb and flow of my photography with how engaged and excited I am about living.

I’ve been shooting a lot this year, mostly at the farm. And I’ve been taking a lot of self-portraits.

I take self-portraits for two reasons: 

1) photos are often more interesting with people and faces in them and I’m often alone, and 

2) it’s a practice in observation for me, like meditation or journaling. I notice how uncomfortable I can be in front of the lens, and I study that feeling to see if I can change it.

My goal is to be a person comfortable in front of the camera. I want to learn so I can take better images but also so I can direct others to be comfortable in front of my lens, too. Like with any other goal, I use my intention to get me through the uncomfortableness, and I apply my attention to improve. I like that stuff.

(The title, btw, refers to this.)

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