Friday, July 3, 2015

The Farmhouse Mentality

It may be just me, but I suspect it is not, but I always seem to have a busy, monologue going on in my head. Like counting when I am watering the pot plants "1,2, 3, ... 15, 16 ... and onto the next pot. 1,2,3 ...." That way they all get an even amount of water (is that OCD?). Or when I am loading the washing machine "OK that's one sock, there is its partner, good. Next sock, turn right way out, there is its partner, good". Picking tomatoes - "That's a good, one, and that one. That one is a bit green, must find that recipe for green tomato pickles, wonder how many tomatoes I will need, do they all need to be green, how green is too green." Vacuuming the floor - "damn dog hair, it's everywhere, I hate the floor being this grotty, what's that mark? Oh its a scratch, can't be too worried about it as there is a big gap in the floor, oh and another leaf blown in, never mind, this is a farm after all ..."

Ok, so now I am guessing this might just be me.

This raises my new mantra/voice in my head. "This is a farmhouse". Well it's not really, we are not actually living on a farm as such. It is a few acres, much larger than your suburban block, but still only 16 kms from the city centre. We do have stock - well chooks and dogs, and paddocks set up for horses, but none have come yet. (Is it really true, that if you build it, they will come?)

It is a farm house, however. It was built in the sixties, with a Metters Warren No.1 stove, a fireplace in the lounge, wide verandas and stables. So lets say it is rural in character. It has wooden floors, that are polished jarrah and divine. There are bits of board missing, and patched over, knots and holes and deep scratches - it is a floor with a robust history. And made to cater to wet pawed, border collies. And booted husbands, with cheeky grins.

Which is why I can (try to) sidestep my perfectionist tendencies and cajole myself to believe that a dirty (ish) floor is ok as this is a farmhouse. Same goes for a kitchen bench covered in zucchinis of varying sizes, tomatoes in varying colours, eggs with a little, umm, err, varying dirt on them, secateurs, and a big bunch of basil. 

The farmhouse mentality however, is having a hard time convincing my perfectionist mentality that tumbleweeds of dog hair rolling down the hallway is rustic, not revolting. That the dining room table covered in egg cartons, bags of oranges and a box of garlic is self-sufficient abundance not anarchy of order. That ash and twigs scattered around the fireplace is cosy not careless. That a laundry of piled washing (both done and to do) demonstrates a priority of time spent in the vegetable garden, which is neat and weeded and prolific.

I wonder who is going to win this mental battle - Farmhouse or Perfectionist?

I know which one I WANT to win!

1 comment:

  1. I do this. Not the obsessive cleaning aspect but the inner monologue. And Especially the counting while watering, or hanging out the washing, or chopping veggies, or standing in the shower (just 20 more seconds...)
    I think you definitely need to let the farmhouse win the ash and twigs around the fire, that is pretty impossible to keep tidy, and a lovely wood fire outweighs all the mess it makes by a long shot.