A Farmlet Christmas Miracle

It’s a small world, my life here on the farmlet with the Bearded One and our goats and chickens.  I’m 56 years old this week, and I am content.  I could die today.  In fact, I wonder, as I get up in the dark, how it can be that I have so little ambition.  I don’t long for anything or anyone.  I don’t yearn for a million dollars or a bestseller.  I’m married to the love of my life and am completely and totally requited.


This is my frame of mind as I walk up to the aviary in the cold, dusky day.  What day of the week is it anyway?  They’re all the same.  I open the main door of the chicken coop.  “Good morning, Ladies!” I say, as usual, to seven hens perched on the top roost.  Stevie and Spot, who both have been broody for weeks now, hunker in the nests.  All nine hens accounted for.

Dusty is the first off, then Leah flaps the fifteen feet down from the roost and out the coop door into the main floor of the aviary.  I open the side doors and by then, Anna, Cheetah and Kimber have dismounted, too.  I disappear behind the coop to hook the door open and fill the plastic jar with cracked corn.  It’s not raining so the goats have come over to watch.  Sage scratches his head with his hind leg, like he always does.  Pearl pees.

By the time I’m back with the rake to stir the night’s chicken poop into the deep peat moss and dirt below the roost, Jane is the only hen left.  She and I have a system since she hurt her foot this fall in an oatmeal stampede with the goats.  Usually I have to go around to the end of the roost to pick her up and transfer her gently to the ground by hand, but this morning she eyeballs me and actually walks the roost toward me, then hunkers down to be picked up.  “Whoa!”  I laugh out loud and kiss her soft orange back feathers before I set her toes into the dirt.  She shakes like a dog then waddles to the feeder to start her busy day.


I feed the goats a cup of dry cob and four little carrots each.  I stuff new hay into their feeders and talk about the weather and how I’m enjoying their new Christmas lights and hope they are, too.  Then out of the blue, I remember the spoon.  What day is this?  Saturday the 22nd!

Down the hill I trot.  I open the soggy gate and hop through the puddle on the other side, then, fired up with anticipation, walk like our son (much-rehabbed from knee surgery) taught me, stretched up like I’m looking over a fence and showing the soles of my shoes with each step.  He’s here on Christmas break, sharing his recently-learned body-healing stretching techniques.


Now he’s still sleeping, as is the Bearded One.  So I tiptoe up the stairs and turn on the computer.  Garfield, who has completely recovered from his spell last week, hops into my lap.  I admired the spoon when I first saw it on my friend’s blog.  Tasmanian wood, a light color and smooth as butter.  Best of all, hand-carved by her husband.

I literally felt a spark when I read that it was to be the prize in a reader’s lottery.  To enter you just had to leave a comment, which I did.  For someone not desiring anything at all, it occurs to me that I really want that spoon.  Their dog Earl would be picking a walnut with the winning person’s number written on it out of a bowl on Saturday, December 22 — yesterday in Tasmania.

Down through text and pictures of scones and gorgeous summer gardens and flowers I scroll.  And then I see it.  It’s a miracle.  The winner of the spoon is:  CHRISTI.  My name is written in the middle of the page in bright green twinkling letters, and I gasp.  I won!  I laugh out loud and stifle a shriek of absolute delight.  Men are sleeping.


I click on the video link my Australian friends have made of Earl the Dog actually picking the walnut with my number, number 5, and I am giddy.  Steve’s accent is thrilling and I can see Fran’s hand in the bowl and her direction behind the entire enterprise.  I have won.  With no effort whatsoever, no striving, no cause and effect involved except showing up, I won the lottery.  Merry Christmas Everyone.

Spoon and the winning walnut


14 responses to “A Farmlet Christmas Miracle

  1. We love the drawings and your real happiness at winning Steve’s “carved with care” spoon. I can’t think of anyone who deserves that spoon more than You Christi, your lack of aspiration (for want of a better word!…I think I mixed my metaphores?!) has brought the spoon down into your hand. I bet it feels like it belongs there when it drifts down to you in Olalla from up here in the Tasmanian stratosphere like one of the dandelion seeds floating carefree in the breeze, spreading their weedy love all over Serendipity Farm :). You just made our Boxing Day with this lovely post :)…Steve says that The Bearded One has excelled himself with the stick drawings today…he can see a future for him in a high end Canadian Art Gallery with a beret on a jaunty angle, a glass of red perched precariously between his thumb and first finger while he waxes lyrical about all things Degas and Da Vinci…or maybe he lives that elegant life inside his head all the time and we just don’t know it? SPRUNG! 😉

    • Fran — A huge thanks to you and Steve for dreaming up such a fun and crazy lottery which I had to do virtually nothing to win. It was sheer luck, which is how I feel about my life today, and most every day. I love being old!:) Sending weedy dandelion love back to you, my Australian heart friend.

      • I have to admit something here…I picked the dandelions and spread them myself! I now know how useful they are! The roots to make a coffee sub, the leaves I have to fight with my Java finches for and the tops are pure magic laying on your back spreading weedy happiness…what’s not to love about a dandelion? 🙂 I even love their French name “Pis en lit” or wet the beds in Austrenglish because of their valuable diuretic qualities…Dandelion love is the kind of love that no-one realises that they need until they open their eyes and see the “Real World” and there it is! Waiting to be appreciated rather than stepped on without thought 🙂 Have a great Boxing Day and hopefully you will be being reflective rather than Boxing! 😉

  2. Hooray, Christi! Lovely life. I know you will cook well with the spoon!

  3. I am delighted that you won the spoon!

  4. After talking to the Bearded One night before last, I know today is your birthday and a celebration is happening. Hope it is the loveliest of days for all, Christi! Soooo enjoy reading about y’all’s life and like Jan said, ” I too, love the way you write.” Happy New Year! Victoria

  5. I have really enjoyed reading this post Christi. I am delighted that you are the winner of the lovely spoon carved by Steve. I too follow Fran’s wonderful blog.

    • Thanks for visiting, Jean. It was quite a thrill to win the spoon, I have to say. I’ve watched the video of Earl choosing the nut about 10 times now. I just love Steve’s accent and Fran’s whole crazy fun take on the world. And I enjoyed your recent post on planting by the moon. I do that, too, when I can, even though our soil is way moist most of the time. Your allotment veggie photos are a balm to my soul up here in the winter hemisphere. 🙂

  6. Christine Widman

    Happy Happy Birthday.
    Today our desert place looks & feels like the NW. Brisk chill…snow on the mountains making them blue instead of brown…huge white clouds all over the sky.
    I have been pondering your words, “It’s a small world, my life on the farmlet…”
    Here for some reason at the B&B in this desert landscape I am feeling at the moment that we are daily managing a rather huge world.
    We have return guests from Ohio who arrived at 1:30am because they were airport bound for hours and hours and hours due to the huge snow storm in the eastern states, guests from Seattle who are here for 2 weeks visiting family, return guests from Illinois here for a week visiting family, and guests from California.
    I have been receiving holiday emails and phone calls from my family all over the map – Hawaii, Seattle, Northern Arizona, NJ, NY, Virginia, Colorado, Bolivia….
    Perhaps I am feeling the vast expanse of people all over the planet.
    So I was delightfully cocooned-comforted by your farmlet today.
    With Jane hopping over for help to get to the ground and I’m certain for a cuddle and feather kiss from you.
    By the goats watching you at your morning chores…Sage scratching his head with his hind leg.
    By the goat’s feed of dry cob and carrots.
    And by the sudden thrill of you winning a spoon from Tasmania!
    A small spoon from across a vast ocean.
    Joy to the world.
    And to you my dear darling friend.

  7. Oh, Christine, I just had to Google the distance between here and Sidmouth, Tasmania, Australia, and it is roughly 13,000 miles! A big world indeed, and I can feel the breadth of it coming to your Bed and Breakfast. Your friendship is a deep part of my contentment. Love and hugs from Olalla! 🙂

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