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Last year at this time I was writing a post about New Year’s Resolutions.  I had good intentions when I wrote that post, and I think that the goals I had last year were good for me, but it’s impossible to know what will happen throughout the year.  It wasn’t that 2009 was a bad year for me.  There were some great things that happened throughout the year:  I worked with a first grade class to integrate gardening into their science curriculum, I started my job at the CSU organic farm, Lauren and I took a trip to Seattle, I passed organic chemistry and statistics, Lauren and I got a puppy, I had the chance to cater a business’ open house.  However, in the midst of all of this good stuff that was going on I just felt “off.”

I struggled to focus when I sat down to read.  I struggled for words when I sat down to write.  I found that when I couldn’t read or write I was restless.  When I couldn’t read or write  I lost vision and purpose.  Being restless without vision and purpose does not sit well with me.

I found myself somewhat stuck between searching for contentment and longing for adventure.

This year, however, has some exciting things on the horizon.  I’m working with a friend on a project that will be working on bringing affordable, healthy, and local food to people who are ready to make the change.  We’ll be kicking things off with a blog on January 10 and we are planning an event during the month of March.  I’m heading to Milwaukee next week to visit Growing Power.  Will Allen has become a hero for me and I’m really excited to meet him and get a closer look at the great work he is doing in organic, urban ag.  Starting in February I’ll be starting back to work at the farm, but this year I’ll be working as a farm manager.  I’m really excited about being able to step into this role.  I think that it will  give me a needed push to convince me that I’ll be able to have my own farm (in whatever capacity it looks like) someday in the near future.  Lauren and I are planning a trip to Oregon in June.  It will be a vacation for the sake of taking a vacation.  It’s going to be lovely.  In the fall I’ll get the chance to do an independent study for credit.  I’m thinking about looking into extending the CSA season to look at the viability of a winter CSA or perhaps a market study of heirloom dry beans.  And by the time we’re writing 2011 I’ll be one semester away from graduation.

I’m staying away from making any formal resolutions this year.  I think my goal is to learn to live in the ways that are the most “Stephen.”  I want to find and pursue the things that capture my heart.  I want to continue to fall in love with Lauren.  I want to find peace in the unknown.  I want to be.

Etcetera Whatever
words by Over The Rhine

Don’t speak.
Words come out your eyes.
You’re wet with this nightmare.
Like thorns you hold these secrets to your breast,
your slender fingers closing into fists.

Trace your bruise
like a guilty streak.
Hold the pain.
You’re a connoisseur.
You think you have no other gift to give,
but we have so much left to live.

We don’t need a lot of money.
We’ll be sleeping on the beach,
keeping oceans within reach.
(Whatever private oceans we can conjure up for free.)
I will stumble there with you
and you’ll be laughing close with me,
trying not to make a scene
etcetera. Whatever. I guess all I really mean

is we’re gonna be alright.
Yeah, we’re gonna be alright.
You can close your eyes tonight,
’cause we’re gonna be alright.

So come on now,
I can almost see
that place
on a distant shore.
And courage is a weapon we must use
to find some life you can’t refuse.

We don’t need a lot of money.
We’ll be sleeping on the beach,
keeping oceans within reach.
(Whatever private oceans we can conjure up for free.)
I will stumble there with you
and you’ll be laughing close with me,
trying not to make a scene
etcetera. Whatever. I guess all I really mean

is we’re gonna be alright.
Yeah, we’re gonna be alright.
You can close your eyes tonight,
’cause we’re gonna be alright.
All that I can see is your eyes.
Close your eyes.
Close your eyes.


Let me clarify that title a bit.  I’m not physically moving.  I’ve started another blog, so I’ll be moving over there.  But I’ll still be posting stuff here.  I’ll be posting stuff that has to do with food at the other blog.  Man, that was confusing.  I should have used a different title, huh?

If you’ve been around me much you should know that I’m really into food.  I like to grow, cook, and eat food.  I know that some of you don’t really care about any of those things, so I figured I would put together a blog specifically for those things.  So I did.  It’s called “Field and Table.”  Click the link, bookmark the new site, comment often, and whatever else you do with amazing blogs.  That last part might be a stretch, but you get the point.  Stop by and say “Hi.”

Wake up at 6am and actually feel rested.
Wash the dishes and clean the kitchen a bit.
Turn the sprinkler on in the front yard and watch the water fan back and forth.
Contemplate baking Zucchini Muffins.
Start thinking of a weekly menu for the week and items to buy from the farmers market.
Weed and meditate in the vegetable garden before it got too hot.
Enjoy a cup of coffee on the back patio while listening to the roosters.
Write a short blog post about reasons I enjoy early mornings.

I did it. I finally unsubscribed from Slice of Laodicea. If you don’t know what it is, you are better off my friend. It has been like a drug for me. Every day, for far too long, I have read about all of the crap that they post. I have read, been disgusted, and secretly hope for more.  I know that even mentioning this might cause some of you to search for what I’m talking about and get hooked yourself.  I am warning you:  Be very careful.  Highly addicting, and horribly harmful.

In my struggles I was glad to see that Bob Hyatt struggles with it too.

It’s been about 3 weeks since I’ve posted last.  As I thought about writing this post I realized that it was going to end up sounding like most of my journal entries lately. 

“I wish I wrote more often.”
“I wish I had more time to write.”
“Maybe if I took the time to write more I wouldn’t feel so stressed out.”
“I’m awesome.”

Well maybe not that last one, but I wonder why it is so easy for me to dwell on these thoughts?  Am I looking for excuses or comfort?  Is this my way of challanging myself to write more often?  Or am I just complaining to myself?  If I was honest I would say that it’s probably a combination of all 3. 

Certainly my reasons for writing in a journal and writing this blog are different.  My thoughts are often more raw and personal when I write them in my journal, and here I hope my thoughts to be more comtemplative.  In both mediums, however, I realize that writing thing out is very important for me.  The act of writing helps me work through things when I don’t have another person to talk with.  

There are times when I really want to write, but don’t have the patience to sit down and write.  Other times I want to write about something that has happened rescently, but don’t feel like “dwelling on the past.” 

So what are your excuses?  Why do you not write when you know you want to? 


  • If you haven’t yet, go seek the wisdom of the great Starbucks Oracle. That’s the most blog traffic I’ve gotten since I wrote this post.
  • Three times I’ve sat down to write a reflection for the Experiment’s blog about our time in prayer last week. Every time I sat to write I found myself starring at a blank screen. Maybe there should be no post about it. Maybe it should just be remembered by those who were there. If you have any thoughts, though, please don’t hesitate to share.
  • If you are an avid blogger/blog reader you probably have blogs bookmarked of people you don’t know. Often times you put them in the right folders to remind yourself of why you bookmarked their page. You might also have a blog or two that you can’t remember how you got to their page or why you bookmarked it in the first place. Letters from Kamp Krusty is that for me. I just recently found out that his name is Brent and I think he’s a Christian radio DJ. His post today made me glad I’ve got him bookmarked. Scroll through his site and enjoy it.
  • Last but not least one more reason to question why I don’t own a book of Wendell Berry’s work:

I am trying to teach my mind
to bear the long, slow growth
of the fields, and to sing
of its passing while it waits.

The farm must be made a form,
endlessly bringing together
heaven and earth, light
and rain building back again
the shapes and actions of the ground.


I don’t even use the other one very well.

I wanted to make a comment on someone’s blog, but needed an account. So I got suckered in. Want the kicker? I never did post the comment.

Here’s to having one more thing I don’t need. I guess I’m living the American Dream.