Even though we are big on systems and planning, we are not at all rigid. I like to think of our approach as emergent…as a family we are always adapting…as children grow and parents age, as the seasons turn, as interests and skill sets change.
Another big piece of the work-life balance for our family is food. Because this is our passion, so much of how we live and work revolves around eating and drinking well. I think the pleasure of delicious food is what keeps us going, both in our work and in our everyday life. We love to eat and drink wonderful things that are ethically and ecologically made by real people. To us that means leaving time and energy to grow a huge garden and forage for mushrooms and plants in the wild. It means cooking three from-scratch-meals a day (work that is shared amongst the members of the family). It means spending our food dollars with folks we know and building community with other farmers and food makers who are doing good work. And it means mentoring and supporting the next generation of farmers for a better future.
Everyone has their own work-life balance solution to find. But if it feels hard, that’s because it is. In the United States, we live in a culture that tends to value work above all else. To make space for a broader life experience we have to create that space. Not an easy task but an important and worthwhile one.
Cheers to you, and to balance.
PS Speaking of fairness, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that food, farming and land access systems in the United States are deeply unfair. Just 36%* of farmers in the US are female. But worse yet, just 5%* of farmers in the US are people of color. That’s right: 95% of farmers in the US are white and 100% of farms in the US are located on colonized land, a statistic that is not a random accident but the result of a long history of institutionalized land and labor theft. We recognize that the lifestyle we live is a tremendous privilege and make reparations part of our everyday spiritual practice. (Learn more about reparations in the cider industry here
*2017 USDA Census of Agriculture