I'm sitting on the couch in my apartment. I moved out of the farm today. I feel really weird. It's feels weird to know that my stuff isn't there anymore, that I won't be going back there later tonight. It feels uncomfortable.

I have had such a great summer. I've learned so much and met so many great people that I hope to keep in touch with. It was nice to live a different life for a little while. To step outside of normal society. There is definitely a different culture with farm people. I was thinking that when I was hanging out at a pub last night with some farm peeps and we were discussing the different methods for castrating cows and goats (rubber band or knife?). I was a apart of a similar conversation over dinner last Friday night at the farm. Dinner! It was then I learned that some cultures use their teeth to castrate their goats. A human's mouth is cleaner than any knife they have.

Anywho, yes, farm culture. Like the fact that most of the girls have hairy legs. It's not big deal at all, in fact, it's kind of expected that we don't shave our legs. That was freeing. I would once every week, at the most. And I never saw any of the farm girls put on make up. I have worn mascara maybe twice this whole summer, and that's the only make up that has touched my face.

I'm glad I did it, and I'm sad it's over.

What's next life?


So I'm not sick anymore, if you're keeping track.  I haven't been for awhile; it was just a couple day sickness.

So you know how I enjoy chilling out at Common Grounds? Well so does everyone that I live with at the farm. So Saturday morning we all decided to go together. And since we are also ecologically conscious--and frugal--people, we all piled into my car. There was seven of us.

Hey, at least it was my car so I could wear a seatbelt, right mom? That was fun. I like having that many people in my car, but it's probably not as comfortable for them. That was good bonding.

I used to think of myself as more on an introvert, in the Myers-Briggs since I mean. As in I would rather be by myself when I was tired or sad or sick, but I really don't think so anymore. I like having lots of people around me. Like when I was sick last week, and I was all by myself in the Waters' apartment, I got lonely. And when I was lying in my bed, feeling sick and gross and tired, I still liked having the girls in my room around me. I didn't want to participate in the conversation, but I wanted to be in the same room as it. But I enjoy a long afternoon by myself too, but usually in a coffee shop type setting where there are still lots of people around me.

Whatever. I'm me. Introvert, extrovert, normal, insane. Whatever. I think one can be too introspective. Sometimes I need to stop looking inside myself and trying to figure myself out and instead look outside at the people around me. They matter too.

Fresh Air

The tickle in my throat has grown and now I have a fever.  Grrr.  A least that means my body is fighting it, right?  So most of this afternoon and evening I have been lying on the couch of our upstairs neighbors, the Waters. They are good people, constantly offering me water and hot tea.   Also--they have air conditioning.  We have an air conditioning unit in our bedroom, but we only turn it on at night before we sleep.  Otherwise we make do with fans, which isn't bad at all.  We rely too heavily on our air conditioning I think.

On Tuesday I volunteered to man a spot in downtown Waco where CSA members could pick up their vegetables (CSA=Community Supported Agriculture.  People pay every month to receive fresh, organic produce from our farm once a week).   It was on the porch of a childcare center (random I know), under an awning.  So it was outside, but in the shade and I wasn't uncomfortably hot, even though I was wearing long pants and a hat.  I would eavesdrop on people walking by though and hear them complain of the heat.  I thought to myself "Really?  I feel pretty good." Their body was just conditioned to air conditioning (ha. punny.)    It was an interesting observation of my part.  I'm glad to have rid myself of that need for a couple months, just to learn that I CAN survive in a Texas summer without constant air conditioning.


So hopefully I get better pretty quick.  Like I said in my last post, I hate just sitting around while everyone else is working.  We'll see how tomorrow goes


That tickle is feeling a little worse.  Nothing really bad, I'm just feeling a little under the weather.  Luckily, I didn't have to work today because  I did a little extra yesterday.  So I tried to sleep in, but was fully awake by 7:30.  Grrr.  That's ok, I like mornings.  I ran errands and stuff.  And I played guitar some, but didn't have much of a voice and so mainly played  Bright Eyes songs.  He doesn't have much of a voice either.

I took some stuff that has made me feel weak and tired, but I can't sleep.  I tried napping.  That rarely works for me.  Whatever.  Life is hard.

I felt uneasy all today--being in town and not doing anything whilst I knew my fellow farmers were working.  I didn't like it.  I came back and everyone was gathering for lunch, and I felt right again.  I like these people.  I like how as soon as people are finished eating, there is this unspoken coalition that forms as people start washing dishes, sweeping, wiping counters.  Everyone helps cleans.  It's beautiful.  

We're also really blessed here with having awesome cooks.  There's not a day that goes by (except for on weekends) when I don't hear someone exclaim after/during lunch something like, "Man! This is/was a great lunch!  Thanks [whoever was cooking]!"  And it's always true.  Even when I cooked!  I think there is magic in this food.  But organic, sustainable magic, not processed, chemical-ly magic. 

And that's that.

Nanny berries

I have a tickle in my throat and that concerns me. I hope I'm not getting sick.

Did I mention that on Friday I was involved in fecal sampling? I will now. On Friday I participated in the collecting of  fecal samples (aka poop, nanny berries, etc) from the dairy goats and then assisted in detecting parasite eggs in them via a microscope (not a telescope. if you confuse those two words, people will laugh at you). There are two collecting methods we utilized:

1. Chasing the goats around until they got riled up enough and their insides had jiggled around enough to poop.   This was kind of fun, but also a little frustrating.  I felt like a goat bully.  I was running after them, yanking on their tails and pushing them around.  When you see them start to excrete the nanny berries, you open your little ziplock baggie and catch. If that doesn't work . . .
2.  You take a more direct method.  You extract them directly from their . .  the end of their digestive tract.  We only had to do this with two goats.  I held them still while another reached in.

Don't worry, I was wearing gloves for all of the above.

So that was exciting.

I feel like there was something else I wanted to share.  Hm.  I just got out of class.  The farm has class every Monday and Thursday afternoon over topics about agriculture, missions, world hunger, or religion.  Today was about Islam.  It was intriguing.  The fundamentals of Islam were discussed, as well as how a Christian should approach a Muslim person.  The emphasis was on listening instead of arguing, love instead of hostility, repentance instead of attack,  conversation instead of evangelism, looking at a person instead of a religion.  That sort of thing.  There was good discussion.

And now if you'll excuse me, I have some goats to milk. (I feel like I know them a lot better now that I've looked inside their excrement.)

Puppy Ciao!

I'm on my friend/former roommate, Melissa's, computer (not to be confused with my current roommate Melyssa). The second Fantastic Four movie is playing and we're munching on puppy chow (as in the wonderful combination of chex, peanut butter, chocolate, butter, and powdered sugar. It's a staple with us). It's so good, but bad, because it's one of those irresistible snacks that you can't stop eating. It's ridiculous.

This movie is also ridiculous.

So I only have a week and a half at the farm left. Weird! Sad. Unbelievable. I still don't know what I'm going to do with this, with all of this new farm knowledge and world of ideas. Do I want to continue to pursue work like this? Do I just take it and stuff it into my arsenal of experiences, learn from it, and move on? Somewhere in between? I don't know. I don't usually have a plan and that has worked so far, but the real world is fast approaching. I should probably start studying for the GRE or something. Or maybe dread my hair.

There are so many paths. I wonder which one is mine.

I'm going to be 22! Eeeee.

Beee yourself.

Wherever I go, I leave fans of the television of "Felicity" in my wake. I have the seasons on DVD and this summer I brought them out to Waco. First I got my roommates hooked, and now my farm friends. I walked into our dorm living room today to find three farm guys engrossed in an episode of Felicity. Yes. The only thing is I can't find the last two seasons, so I just get people hooked, and then I get them mad at me, because they can't know how it all ends.

Yesterday was the annual honey harvest. It was a lot of fun, mainly because most everyone was involve, and because honey is yummy--espcially raw, locally grown, world hunger relief honey. Here are some picture from the day that I stole from the Beckers blog.

Will and Ryan

Melyssa and Kris


I was involved in the next step--putting the honey into jars. And I got stung on the ankle at the very end, when the bees were the angriest. We stole their livelihood. I would be too.

Isn't Amanda a good photographer?


So yesterday I finally finished making a skirt that I started working on before I left for California, under the guidance of the master seamstress--Melyssa. It's a reversable wrap skirt. Che-che-che-che-check it out.

I didn't actually think it would happen, I kept messing up, but there it is. I'm excited about it.

So the farm has been getting a lot of attention. The paparazzi are out of control! You heard about that news article, well today there was a film crew here from Texas Country Reporter, which I have never heard of, but they are going to do a show about us. They kept telling us to do things over again, like walk out of doors and carry baskets. So if you're watching Texas Country Reporter and see a girl's hands carrying a basket of peppers, it was may be me.

And here is a picture of me from the aforementioned Mystery Spot, being mysterious.

If you would like closer inspection, you can click on it.


Sometimes it gets exhausting--all the worlds that this person is involved in. This summer I'm finding it's hard for me to be fully present at one place, whether it be in Waco, at the farm, in Colleyville, on an airplane. If I'm here then I'm not there and I'll be doing this but not doing that and what about after this? And it's all just social stuff, no big deal, I'm just operating on two and a half hours of sleep and feeling exhausted but I can't flippin' nap. And so everything is feeling like a big deal.

And I want everyone and everything but there is just so many of them. I've have become increasingly bad at losing things like keys and books and directions, and I think it's just because I'm never focused on one moment.

Sometimes I just want everything to stop for a moment. "I hope this old train breaks down, Then I could take a walk around, And, see what there is to see, And time is just a melody, All the people in the street, Walk as fast as their feet can take them, I just roam through town, And though my windows got a view, The frame im looking through, Seems to have no concern for me now."

But I'm back from California now and safe and clean and I had a great week.

Texas is hot. And Waco is nowhere near the ocean.

We're famous.

The Dallas Morning News wrote a story about us! (click here.) A couple weeks ago a young reporter stayed a night at the farm and took pictures and video and notes and now it has all come together as an article. I'm not speifically mentioned, but I am inadvertently when she says

The young farmers of World Hunger Relief don't see themselves as farmers in the traditional sense.

Yes, they have farmer's tans and sometimes wear overalls, but some also have trendy square-rimmed glasses and pierced noses. They update the egg inventory as well as a farm blog. And they have wireless Internet but no flush toilets. . . ."Originally, I was like 'Whoa, Waco? Is this going to be some kind of cult?' " said 27-year-old Will Summers, who grew up in El Paso and majored in film at the University of Texas at Austin.

But there's no Kool-Aid here, only raw goat's milk.

I'm the only one there with a nose ring, so it had to be about me. I'm famous! I'll try not let it go to my head.

And I'm still in California. Apparently its fashionable now for guys to wear high socks. They surfer guys around here all wear white, high, pulled up socks. I don't dig it.

I'd like to thank Elizabeth for letting me know that the article had printed.

Wiggity Wack

Lots of stuff has been happening, but I don't really have much to say about it. I guess I don't just like reciting a list of things I have done, so unless I have something interesting to say about them, I don't feel like wasting my breathe.

This morning we're going to visit Vanessa's family. Last night we had a bonfire on the beach. And I had really good sushi at Pink Godzilla Sushi Bar. Oh! And yesterday we went to this place called the Mystery Spot. It's very mysterious--the gravity is all wiggity wack there and it causes everything to tilt at 17 degrees; branches only grow on one side of trees there; birds don't fly over it. You perception of people's height is distorted. No one knows why! There are a couple theories, one being that the spot is underneath a hole in the ozone layer. Another is that an alien spacecraft crashed there once long ago and the engines are still running, far underground. One of us theorized that the mystery spot tickets are laced with a hallucinatory drug. You should Wikipedia it. It's fascinating. We got some cool pictures of us being all tilty at it that are still trapped on my camera, but here's an old picture of tilty people.


I hope you have a mysterious day.


I am currently cursed with the inability to sleep in. Despite what my blog may tell you, it is 8 am where I am and I've been up for over an hour. Everyone else in the house is asleep. Despite me complaining about it, I actually enjoy this. I get to have some moments to myself and read, possibly blog. Va bene.

I get to say all the italian phrases that float in my head this week without bound! I usually just keep them in my head, because people wouldn't know what I'm saying. (Va bene (Ok)? Dove (Where)? Andiamo (Let's go)? Che triste (How sad)? Mangia(Eat!)? Non lo so (I don't know)?) But these people do.

I'm at Vanessa's beach house in Santa Cruz, California. I got here Saturday with Melissa. It's pretty foggy right now, but not as foggy as it was yesterday morning. It clears up later though. And it's cold. Cold! In the mornings and evenings. I haven't been cold outside in awhile. Yesterday I went into the Pacific Ocean for the first time, which is also cold. And the waves are a lot more powerful than Texan waves. Yesterday, as I was frolicking in them, one pulled me under and for a moment I couldn't tell which way was up and I couldn't get out. I had a mini freak out, but it was just for a moment.

I'm hoping to come back with a nice, more even, tan.

Independence Day

Wow, I had not idea people had such strong feelings about quiche! Thanks for all the support and comments.

I am celebrating my country's independence today be being independent. Hanging out with me, you know. I'm sitting in my apartment, vacated of all roommates. I've read a lot. I'm currently working my way through Achebe's Things Fall Apart and understand why it's such a classic. Later there will be fireworks and friends.

I was fooling with my Photobooth with some of my farm peeps and what we thought was going to be a picture turned into this.

So there you've met some new people in my life.
Earlier that day, we went swimming.

Happy July!

I cooked lunch again today. It was kind of a last minute thing-decided yesterday- and so I didn't have much time to mentally prepare. It turned out really well though. I made four quiches, all by myself! The crust and everything. They turned out really good, if I do say so myself. And I do. I just did. Here it what was in them, aside from the eggs:

1. swiss chard, onions, garlic, cheddar cheese

2. tomato, basil, dill, swiss cheese with cheddar cheese baked in the crust

3. corn, kidney beans, with pecans baked in the crust

4. tomatos, potatoes, swiss and cheddar cheese

Phew. It was fun. Quiche is easy. And there is much room for creativity.

So cooking isn't so bad. It just takes confidence and literacy.

While I was cooking, there was a group of high school kids cleaning in the building and at one point I notice two girls standing in the doorway watching me. So I say hi and they say hi back and awkwardly stand there a few moments more.
"We were wondering what you're making?"

"I'm making some quiches."

"Oh . ."

Awkward silence

"We rotate who cooks, and today is my day. I don't cook a lot though so I'm kind of nervous, but it's fun."

Awkward silence.

"Um . . what's a quiche?"

"It's kind of like a pie but with eggs and usually vegetables or something in it. I think it orginated in France. They're pretty common. I'm sure you'll run into them again."

"Oh" (They didn't seem too excited about an egg pie)

The two girls exit

Did I know what a quiche was in high school? I'd like to think I did, but maybe I didn't. Did you?