A Late-Night Mission
An icy mist hung in the air, lighting on everything it touched. My hand caught the haphazardly placed headlamp as it attempted to topple from my head. In the midst of readjusting it, I noticed the light from the lamp illuminating millions of tiny droplets as they rested softly on each leaf, flower, and fruit around me.
I could feel the temperature dropping.
The first frost of the season was surely only hours away, we needed to hurry!
With the frost would come the end of the growing season for the year. Our family would wake in the morning to lifeless plants wilted and brown from the frost. Any vegetables, other than our cold hardy root crops, left in the garden overnight would be reduced to mush.
If only our weather wasn’t so unpredictable! This impending frost had caught us by surprise.
We had hung on until the last possible moment, giving the tomato plants “just one more day”, hoping the tomatoes would get their act together and ripen on the vine, but now they needed to be harvested or they would be lost.
A light bobbed up the hill behind me as Jeremy pushed the wheelbarrow, and any boxes he could find, towards his waiting wife. I had pulled him away from a quiet evening of Netflix, insisting tonight was the night, it was now or never!… He wasn’t so sure.
For hours we picked and pulled until our, now green, hands ached from the cold and our backs screamed from bending over the twisting tomato vines.
But we did it! Almost 300 pounds of tomatoes from over 60 tomato plants. The tomatoes, as well as a few bushels of peppers and the last remaining summer squash, lay in numerous boxes and totes scattered around us.
After exerting our last reserves of energy hauling each box of precious garden produce back to the house, we collapsed, tired yet light-hearted, into chairs across from each other at the kitchen table.
Though many may be have been irritable over giving up their evening plans for the sudden threat of frost, we were content and, in a way, grateful. That evening Jeremy and I had connected in a way that wouldn’t have been possible curled up on a couch in front of a screen, or even at an elaborately set dinner table of a high-end restaurant.
Again and again we have found, that the times when we connect and bond the most are when we work together on a goal or project; while, all too often, our dinner dates and nights away are left wanting.
In this way, homesteading has been such a blessing for our marriage. It has provided a common ground; something we can work, sweat, and problem solve our way through, together. Conversations and interactions occur that wouldn’t take place in any other situation.
For OUR relationship, working together on our homestead is top quality “quality time”, and second to none.
A Couple That Works Together, Stays Together!
I must however add, in full disclosure, my husband was slightly more irritable the next morning when we woke to a beautiful frost-free garden…
I did mention our weather is unpredictable, right?