Originally, this was going to be a long planned post about how we roast our own coffee at my house and how this is fun and cool and enlightening in various ways. Well, fun and cool, anyway. But somehow, the more that I thought about it, the more that I realized that this wasn't that kind of post at all. Indeed, I started to think about how the reason that we still roast our own coffee in the post-baby universe of our little homestead is because Dan roasts our own coffee. Having previously been the driving force behind our attempts at a do-it-yourself lifestyle, I seem, perhaps without realizing it, to have deferred a bit to my other half in the self-sufficiency department. And, I think that this is another of the strategies that I'm using in order to still feel a level of productivity in my life. It is just not as conscious a strategy as say, baby wearing or slow cooker meals.
green coffee beans, ordered from Sweet Maria's in Oakland, Ca, where we used to live
I came into blogland on a self-sufficiency platform. I was sewing my clothes and bags, baking my bread, handstitching birthday and holiday offerings for family and friends. And, I was blogging about it. That was six years and seven hundred posts ago, and honestly, a whole lot has changed since then. I still believe in a handmade, self-sufficient life. I do. But I also believe in the self-forgiveness and flexibility that motherhood (and life in general) makes necessary.
Two summers ago, I was the mother to a six year old who was already reading and could happily spend afternoons at a time perched on the end of the couch with a pile of books at her feet. In those days, I made my own laundry detergent. I canned food for the winter. I made my daughter's skirts, knit us both sweaters, baked everything from scratch and provided my girl with an endless supply of craft projects that we could tackle side by side at the dining room table. I still do some of those things. I do. But these days I cast on a size ten sweater for my eight year old daughter and tell myself that no matter how slowly I go, it will likely still fit by the time I'm ready to bind off. Sometimes I tackle the chore of baking bread for my now gluten-free family, occasionally I'll sit down at the sewing machine. But these days I do these things only when I really and truly want to. No amount of do-it-yourselfer's guilt complex (a condition which spreads dangerously fast on the internet) can convince me to bake, make, craft or create just because I feel like I should. Or because other bloggers do it and take nicer pictures than I do, or post more often, or have more readers.
What I should do is hold my baby on my hip while I watch the big kid turn our living room into a cardboard box museum. Or work on projects for Alphabet Glue because really, I like to do that. I do. And, I should allow for a temporary passing of the do-it-yourself torch to my husband. He can roast the coffee, keep the thing lit, and then, when baby Z. is a little more self-sufficient himself, I can take it back up. There are plenty of good years for canning, quilting and baking ahead.
For now- the way things work? There are sometimes just fewer things.