Country Living Series

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

What about Don?

A couple days ago, I got a comment from a gentleman named Myles who was concerned about my husband. He wrote:

I've been watching your blog for some years now. I've been to Portland with you four or five times meeting your friends and seeing your favorite place for coffee and the bookstore that you frequent right before your trip back home. I've also been with you on your book tours and to the preparedness expos. Just a few days ago I went along while you went off to the fair with your daughter(s). However, from a man's standpoint, what about Don? Does the poor man work constantly? The only break that I've seen him get is when you went canoeing for a date at the local lake. I even knows that he self catheters and that he's always there for you. My question is does he ever get out? Does he get a chance to hang with the guys? What's he do for fun other than build, repair or make beer steins?

I thought this was awfully sweet of Myles to be concerned and figured I'd take this chance to explain further about my dear husband.

One of the things Don and I had to accept when we began developing a farm is that most trips must be taken separately, because someone must always be home. So when I go to Portland or other road trips, I'm by myself (or with our daughters) and Don stays home. But here's the thing: Don also takes trips, but I don't mention them on the blog because I don't like advertising to the world that I'm home by myself. The occasional sales trip (or pleasure trip) is just as nice a break for him as it is for me, even though we can't enjoy those trips together.

Don works his tail off to support us and I'm more grateful than I can say for what he does. Thankfully the most intense work is seasonal (summer and early fall), so when our season ends, so does much of the tankard work. Fairs fall during this busy time, so if we attend at all, it's usually only one or the other of us. Don isn't the shutterbug I am, so he doesn't take pictures of everything he does.

Our slow season is coming up shortly. During these months our income drops, but we very much look forward to our slow season to reconnect, take things easier, catch up on neglected chores, work on projects around the farm, and batten things down before winter.

(A quick note about his self-cathetering: this references a year and a half ago when Don was hospitalized for three days with acute kidney failure and other issues. The culprit turned out to be a grossly enlarged prostate. He had outpatient surgery a couple of months later and has been right as rain ever since, thank the good Lord above.)

Don is a member of an organization in a nearby town that meets twice a month. He's active in this organization, not only as a member but also on several committees. He enjoys volunteering his time toward charitable events they put on, or helping with whatever functions take place. Here he is, for example, in the organization's Drug Awareness Booth at a small local fair:


We have weekly potlucks with our neighbors, a lovely group of people that we just plain like spending time with.

One of the reasons Don and I are such a good match is we enjoy many of the same home-centered activities. When we're not working on tankards, we do stuff around the house and farm, or read, or walk, or otherwise enjoy each other's company. We're blessed beyond measure to be so compatible.

To some people this may seem like a boring life, but it's a life we thrive on. We enjoy quietness, solitude, and routine. We enjoy the seasonal changes on the farm and the chores and projects each season brings. We each have friends but we also cleave together. Life doesn't get much better than this, frankly.


So while Myles can rest assured that Don isn't being a thankless work horse, he does have an excellent point: I should include non-working references to my dear spouse more frequently. Thank you, Myles, for bringing this up!
_____________________________

Husband of the Boss addendum:

It's delightful to know that there are people out there who show such concern for others. Thank you! But here's the thing: my life has been a series of adventures in places all over the world. The concept of stopping to smell the roses would have never occurred to me back then. I wasn't always a good man (if I can even claim that title today). It's because I was so blessed to have met and then shared my life with the best person I know that I am probably alive today.

God (whom I had little time for back in the day) has graced me far more than I can ever have deserved. And I have to say, although I would never have believed I'd say such a thing, that leaving the farm, even for my occasional reunions with old friends, becomes less attractive with each passing year. I am just about as satisfied a man as I have ever met. The last and greatest adventure is still ahead of me. I'm in no hurry to begin it, but I have no fear of it. I expect it will even beat the farm.

Again thanks for your well wishes.

16 comments:

  1. It's always wonderful to hear from the Husband of the Boss! Thanks, Don and Patrice for sharing your life with us out here in the blogosphere.
    I am very happy to read that the health issues are now in the past for Don. It was probably my upbringing in the 1960's (when we couldn't say "pregnant") that leaves me feeling that asking about the health of someone I don't know is improper. So...so glad the subject came up and that Patrice shared with us about you, and that the news was good.
    It's good to have a spouse and be in a place and time of life where it's good to just be content, and to look forward to the final adventure. (cueing Calvin and Hobbes sledding off into the unknown)
    sidetracksusie

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  2. It's always wonderful to hear from the Husband of the Boss! Thanks, Don and Patrice for sharing your life with us out here in the blogosphere.
    I am very happy to read that the health issues are now in the past for Don. It was probably my upbringing in the 1960's (when we couldn't say "pregnant") that leaves me feeling that asking about the health of someone I don't know is improper. So...so glad the subject came up and that Patrice shared with us about you, and that the news was good.
    It's good to have a spouse and be in a place and time of life where it's good to just be content, and to look forward to the final adventure. (cueing Calvin and Hobbes sledding off into the unknown)
    sidetracksusie

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  3. It is hard for people who do not live this sort of life to understand the working together and the contentment that comes along with it.Our life is similar and we also work side by side. Relaxing at the end of the day from the fulfillment of our hands is gratifying.

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  4. This guy sounds like a stalker..he knows WAY to much about your life and schedules!!! Hope your packin'!

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    Replies
    1. Every event Myles mentioned, every question he asked was based on information Patrice shared in this blog. No stalking involved, just reading…
      sidetracksusie

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    2. Every event, every question posed was based on what Patrice had shared, that which Myles read right here.
      sidetracksusie

      Delete
  5. Thanks for sharing about your Mister, and glory to God his health is good. All my best to your family.

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  6. I was thinking the same thing as Anon.1:07...even becoming alarmed a bit! Then, without one mention of such a thing, you casually go on to defend yourself, Don and your way of living. Glad to know you are packin'!
    V

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  7. Thank you Patrice and Don for such a lovely and detailed reply.
    I look forward to many more years of deadlines, visits from Mel and Chance of Potlatch Pack, getting your snow tires changed, trips to see your renaissance friends in Portland, and taking your beautiful daughters for bling and recitals. Although I currently reside in Northern Wisconsin, I grew up in Lewiston, Idaho and have experienced many of the places that you frequent. I have no idea what you're going to do with such a large herd and I wonder if you have a strategy for the time when you cannot keep up such a strenuous pace. I wish you and your family only the very best.

    Myles

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  8. I figured Don was pretty much an unhappy elf making tankards and doing farm chores, joking. Glad to hear the guy seems happy.

    More seasonal work, arguably the natural rhythm of things, certainly leads to very busy periods then very quiet ones. Overall not a bad deal really.

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  9. Well done, Myles.
    Out of curiosity, were you here back then....do you remember "kenny?"
    If you do, you'll know why this discussion reminded me of that one. It featured Don in a starring role, too, but not from the positive standpoint as do your posts. Seems as though he thought Don was pretty much like some kind of a knot on a log. We made the most of it and turned it into something humorous enough that, if memory serves, kenny was soon gone. Seems like we sort of laughed him right out of Dodge, if you will. ;)

    Don always reminds me of the old saying that still waters run deep.

    A. McSp

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  10. The only visit I recall is when an old friend of Don's came to
    visit while on a business trip. In the end, Patrice thought
    that he was jealous of the riches that Don possessed in
    feeling content and being surrounded by a loving family.

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  11. I always thought of Don as being similar to my own husband who prefers the 'Best Supporting Actor' role in the drama/comedy/action adventure that is our lives!

    Incredible couple! Blessings to you!

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  12. This sure put me in the way back machine Patrice. It reminded me of my Uncle Barney. Uncle Barney and his family were farmers in Northern Indiana. He grain farmed some 500 or so acres, and ran several head of hogs and a few cattle. I can't recall ever seeing Uncle Barney anywhere other than when we visited the farm. Uncle Barney passed but his grandsons still farm that land, and I never see my cousins, unless I visit the farm...

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  13. Don, I was glad to see your note about the declining attractiveness of leaving the farm. With each year that I am here, I am less and less inclined to leave. I pretty much have everything I have ever wanted, so aside from wanting to see distant friends, there is just nothing "out there" which is as wonderful as what I have here!!!

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  14. Don, you've been discovered. People will be coming to the
    farm to meet you. You should start your own blog called
    Rural Revolution Part 2.

    ReplyDelete