A Soft Boiled Morning, Part One


Freshly laid, and soft boiled, eggs, tossed with gremolata & olive oil marinated fresh mozzarella, a most excellent way to begin the day. 

My favorite days on the farm are those in which the stark simple beauty of this life, presents itself.  Today is a day like that. Today there is joy in this morning. Joy, and soft boiled eggs.


The small plot of land upon which we, by twist of fate, presented ourselves, and our midlives, is situated in, perhaps, some of the most beautiful countryside of Central Texas, in the Hill Country.  Home to grand, rolling hillside ranches, wildflower-covered fields in which Longhorn cattle graze, serene lakeside communities, manicured golf courses and the lovely homes of retirees that dot their edges, there is breathtaking beauty all around. The scenery suggests abundance in every direction. 

Maggie Lane

The homesteads that surround ours, perhaps, not so much.  

Some of the poorest families in our county are scattered among the acreage surrounding ours, and, sadly, they, and the homes they live in, are often subject to the snickers of townsfolk more fortunate than they.
  
It has bothered me for some time.

I believe that any great change in our lives comes as an invitation for growth and understanding, and as a call to action. There's been a lot of action around here, chronicled, in small parcels, on the 'pages' of this blog. A small farm has been established. Goats have been delivered.  Puppies have been birthed. Ribbons have been won.  Gardens have been grown.  Friends have been made. Lives have been joyfully lived.



And, mostly off these pages, stories have been told.  Funny tales like the time I met the children from up the road, three dirty little faces in a wagon pulled by a fresh-faced, young, and enthusiastic momma, whose names, though offered by each at an equally enthusiastic volume, I could not quite make out. Each child mumbled their monikers proudly, and repeatedly, but suggesting my hearing wasn't quite up to snuff, Momma interceded and proudly proclaimed them, " Chevy, Geo, and Porche!  You know. Like the cars!"    

Like the time I stopped to chat with the deputy 'visiting' a recently abandoned home nearby, until then,  a small hotspot of 'questionable activity' and no less than daily high-pitched, profane and colorful catfights,  during which, try as I might, I could not position myself sufficiently upwind as to determine the cause. We chatted a while, much like, I imagine, a townsperson would shoot the breeze with any small town, Andy of Mayberry-like sheriff., alternately shaking, and scratching, our heads at the lifestyles so foreign to our generation. After asking where I lived, he remarked, with surprise, "Your's is the only property on this road we haven't been to…" , to which I replied, "Yeah, I aim to keep it that way."  



And then there are stories that have not been told enough.

Like the afternoon when two giggly preteen girls visited. They said they'd always wanted to see inside. They asked if they could bring a cookie mix back and bake them with me, because they didn't have a working stove, and 'this feels like a place you should have homemade cookies'. We baked them from scratch, together. And they came back the next day to learn how to make marmalade with me.  They even pretended they liked it, though I never knew a preteen who liked marmalade. 

Later, when each of their families moved in the middle of the night, I was sad to see them go. But I was grateful, and deeply honored, to be given the chance to show these young ladies a different way of life. I believe seeds were planted in those afternoons together. Seeds planted in the minds of two young ladies. Seeds planted in the heart of one fledgling farmer.


Or the story of that afternoon, assisting, for the very first time, a difficult delivery of a kid goat with no more knowledge than that which I learned in frantic searches on YouTube, and checking in with my in-the-goating-know friend, Brenda, who answered my pleading texted questions with quiet assurance.  The day was long, with many turns, and in the afternoon, an energy and resource-depleted middle-aged neophyte farmer rushed into town, between the every 2-hour feedings, for an extra bale of hay. 

I got to the feed store, still covered in evidence of kidding, which is not even looked upon sideways at a feed store, and realized, in my frenzy, that my wallet was sitting on the potting bench next to the goat birthing pen. After a good laugh at my expense that I'd made it to the feed store in a compact car, with no money, to buy hay, I was sent on my way with a fresh bale, tucked into the back seat, on the house.

.....to be continued, on A Soft Boiled Morning, Part II.  



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37 comments:

  1. Maggie, I love seeing pictures of your garden. There IS beauty all around. My husband and I were driving through a very high poverty side of SA and I noticed all the Coral Vines in bloom. They may not have much, but they still appreciate the beauty in life.

    I'm sure you are planting seeds and nurturing them in your neighbors just as you do in your garden.

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    1. Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving such a sweet comment. Perhaps we need to have the glitz and glam stripped away occasionally to see the very simple beauty this around, and in, each of us.

      Sometimes, I think I'm planting seeds, and sometimes, I think seeds are planted in me. I have as much, or more, to learn from my neighbors as they, from me. I am grateful to God for the opportunities.

      Wishing you a wonderful week, friend.

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  2. Oh... I forgot to say that your breakfast looks amazing! That is how I want to start my morning:)

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  3. Maggie, What a true blessing you are. I can't help but wonder that perhaps God placed you on that little farm to be the voice for all the lovely people that others may frown on, but you see beauty in. This is a gift that I love most about you. Your tender heart and your gift of hospitality and story telling are all but treasures. Thank you for sharing so much of your personal heart with us. love you friend.

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    1. Oh, girl! You've gone and made me cry! lol Happy cry!

      Thank you so much for encouraging me to tell my story. You give me the courage to share what needs to be shared.

      I love you much!

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  4. Oh, I just love the story about the preteen girls! How good of you to open your home to them.

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    1. Hi Lauren!

      Thank you for stopping in and offering encouragement! That was a special time that, I think, came about as a way to encourage me to share my story. Funny how that works, huh? Seems like when you give just a little, you get back fourfold.

      Have a great week, friend!

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  5. Maggie, I love that you continue to share your perspective with us. So many people take what is given us for granted, because we never really have had to do without. Even when my family was at its poorest growing up, we did better than so much of the rest of the country. I feel really blessed to know you.

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    1. Hi my friend!
      Thank you for taking the time to drop by and read what turned into pretty long posts. Seriously, I just begun to write a quick post about soft boiled eggs and then the darned thing wrote itself into two long parts..lol

      I guess that's how one's heart, through one's pen, tells its tale, sometimes.

      Congrats on Vice Prez, girl! I'm so happy to be working with you!

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  6. Beautifully written............truly blessed you and Tom were brought to this area......truly blessed to worship with you.........truly blessed to be our friends. No doubt you are here for a reason, my friend!

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    1. Oh, my dear friend,

      Thank you for such a kind note. Though the words flowed easily, I had to drum up the courage to press that 'publish' button, and your encouragement is much appreciated.

      We, too, feel so blessed to live in this community of ours. I'm honored to be a part of it, and I know Tom is, too. We're excited about the days to come, too.

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  7. I'm glad that you were able to drum up the courage to press that 'publish' button. you make a fella PROUD, every day.

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    1. Ah, sweet guy. You were my very first stroke of genius on the way to this happy life of ours.

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  8. Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by, Sylvia!

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  9. I too loved the story about the preteen girls. Thank you for sharing and linking up, Maggie. I have to admit I love stopping by here, it's a breath of fresh air and takes me back to Texas in a most wonderful way. Thank you for that, I need it.

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    1. We Texans get lumped into a pretty big generalization sometimes. I'm so happy you enjoy the special real life of this Texas area, and I thank you for your gracious comments.
      It is my pleasure and an honor to link up with you. I believe in what you share--s'pose we're kind of kindred spirits.
      So nice.

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  10. What a lovely story and as always your photos made my mouth water!!

    Kathy
    http://gigglingtruckerswife.blogspot.com


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    1. Hi, Kathy!
      I've been thinking of you recently. I hope all is well in your world. For the first time in a year, I didn't participate in NaBloPoMo this month, and I was worried I'd lose touch with some of my favorite bloggers. So happy to see that I still get the honor of visiting, and having you visit me!
      Best Regards,
      Maggie

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  11. So heart-warming --both the story and you!

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    1. Thank you so much.....and thank you for stopping by with a sweet comment. You are so dear!

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  12. How exciting! I love that the girls just stopped by and you were able to teach them to cook/make a few items!
    Good luck as you continue on the farm.

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    1. Hey, thank you for stopping by! And thanks for sending luck our way-- we're always on the brink of using all of ours up! lol

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  13. Do you have room for a family of four! Visiting from Tidbit Thursday, thanks for sharing.

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    1. C'mon down! Surely there are a few extra sleeping bags around here somewhere..lol

      Thanks so much for stopping by!

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  14. What a blessing you are to those girls! You are mentoring the future!
    Visiting from Papa is a Preacher
    Carolina
    sewcarolinaknits

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    1. At the time, Carolina, I think they may have been more a blessing to me than I to them. Their visits really turned my focus onto why I was placed here, in this rural spot.

      Thank you so much for dropping by. It's great to meet new faces from Larissa's link-up!

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  15. Maggie, I am always impressed when I read your posts. The visual feast of photos and your well-crafted words simmer gently, cooking up Texas and lush gardens, farm kitchens and the bristly touch of baby goats. I don't know you, but I suspect that your compassion and kinship with those around you is a reflection of the same rare talent I see whenever I look at your blog—the ability to be planted where you are and fully in love with the world as you find it.

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    1. Oh, Tara--thank you for this beautiful comment! What a way to start my weekend! A lovely, graceful gift of encouragement from you. I take it as a precious compliment, considering what a great writer you are. I always enjoy what you have to say. Thank you, again, for stopping in and supporting my work.

      Have a great weekend!
      Maggie

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  16. Mmmm that looked yummy, I love fresh eggs but don't get them often enough. I have loved reading snippits of your stories and can''t wait for part two!

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    1. Hey there, Joe! Thanks so much for dropping by. I have to say that the very best thing about having this small farm is the fresh eggs, every, fabulous, day! Thank you for your kind comment-- If you'd like to read that second half, I've inserted the link, above, in the last word, 'tomorrow'. Means so much that you want to hear Part II!

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    2. Oops, I changed it, and forgot! lol Here is the (crazy long) link:

      http://frommaggiesfarm.blogspot.com/2012/10/a-soft-boiled-morning-part-two.html?showComment=1350172861069#c900341687274820560

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  17. So much here! Love soft boiled eggs and the marinated mozzarella sounds so good! That is such a bitter sweet story about the girls. And welcome little kid! Isn't Youtube great?!

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    1. thank you, Ann! Girl, if it weren't for YouTube, I'd never have done half of what I've learned to do on this farm! So grateful you've stopped in. Have a great week!

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  18. Ooooo that food looked amazing! I'm reading this at 1am and thinking "I could just eat that...right now...screw going to sleep!"

    What a wonderful blog!

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    1. Hey! Thank you so much! At least soft boiled eggs don't take too darned long! I've been known, on many an occasion, to be throwing them into a bowlful of something around that time o' night.

      Thanks for stopping by! Now, off to bed with you! lol

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