The last couple of weeks I’ve invited you readers to ask questions about my books, writing, or whatever. I answered most of the questions about writing last week on Wednesday. Hop back a couple of posts if you missed them. And if you’ve got more questions, I might be able to come up with more answers.
Emily threw in some different kind of questions. She asked about funny stories about chickens after I featured chickens on my blog. So I told her about the bantam rooster when I was desperate for a pet. Emily also asked me for my best memory growing up on the farm. So that’s the question that gets featured today.
What’s Your Best Memory Growing Up on the Farm?
I can’t really narrow it down to one specific memory. Living on a farm seemed like the only life to me when I was a kid. We had chores. Had to carry in wood for the stove in the winter. Feed the animals all through the year. Of course I liked feeding the chickens as I’ve already told you. I wasn’t that crazy about feeding the pigs. I was always half afraid of them since an old sow chased me when I was a little kid. We bottle fed calves now and again and sometimes lambs. That was my favorite. The lambs were fun to feed and I loved rubbing their curly woolly heads. Then we, my two sisters and I, always had pet cats to love on and after I got a little older I begged and begged until one of dad’s friends brought me a pup. So then I had my first dog and I couldn’t have been happier. A farm is a great place to have pets.
We did have to work in the fields. Dad raised tobacco like most of the other farmers in our area did then. I can’t say that working in tobacco was a best memory. No fun at all from pulling plants and setting it out to stripping off the leaves in the fall. Sometimes we helped in the hay, but Dad often did that by himself. Working was part of being in a farm family. We had a big garden too. Picked peas and beans and helped Mom get them ready to cook or can. We gathered and shucked corn. Dug potatoes. Picked strawberries and got to eat them sweet and juicy off the vine. We had apple trees and my aunt had cherry trees. In the summer we went out in the fields and picked wild blackberries. In the fall we picked up hickory nuts and walnuts. The best things about all that was we did it as a family.
But it wasn’t all work and no play. We spent the night with our aunt every Friday and then visited with our cousins on the other side of the family most Sundays. We played games and baseball and hide and seek after dark. That was always a little scary for me since I was the youngest and had a very vivid imagination of what might be in the dark.
I had time to read and dream and walk in the woods. The same as now I especially liked walking among the trees with my dogs and spotting the gifts of nature. I liked hiding out in my room and scribbling my stories down in notebooks.
Those are just a few of my childhood memories, but perhaps the very best memory of growing up on the farm was the love I knew from my parents and my aunt who was like a grandmother to me. They gave me the freedom to be me. I learned to work but I also learned to love the outdoors. I felt the sunshine on my face. I saw the stars unhindered by city lights. I made tracks in the snow and played in the rain. I splashed and tried to learn to swim in ponds. I swung on a swing made from a tree branch. I had a good time.
Thank you for asking your question, Emily. It took me down memory lane and made me realize how blessed I was to grow up on a farm.
So how about you? Did you grow up in the city or the country? What’s your best memory?
As always, thanks for reading. And if you have a question, ask away.