We’ve been in the new house now just over a week, and I absolutely love it! We’re moving all our furniture and stuff over gradually (we were renting the other place, and budgeted for an extra month, so we wouldn’t have to move all in one day (how do people do that?)!)
The dishwasher is now in the house, but I’m still waiting for it to be plumbed in, so I have been washing up the old fashioned way for 7 people for 9 days! I have only had a dishwasher for 2 years out of 22 of being married, but having tried it, I loved it and don’t want to go back to hand washing! How spoiled I am!
I keep wondering how previous generations of wives and mothers coped with washing and cleaning and cooking without all the modern conveniences we have? My grandmother had a twin tub (separate compartments for washing and spinning) but before that, she did everything by hand. Getting married and having children was pretty much a commitment to a life of drudgery!
But the Amish, who are known for living a simple life with none of the gadgets we take for granted, believe that making life too easy is bad for the soul, an invitation to waste time with things that aren’t important or, worse, things that are sinful! (like television, perhaps, or facebook? lol)🙂 Maybe they’re right, but I’m not ready to throw away my gadgets! I may be a homemaker, but I wanted to be a Starship Captain, remember?! I’m quite keen to get replicators installed! (It would give me time to study temporal mechanics!)😉
In all the rush to simplify, de-clutter, downsize and go back to basics, what is most important? Why are we doing this? For me, the answer is twofold – I want to be with my children at home (and work for myself!), and I want to learn and preserve traditional crafts. But is it necessary to tie myself to a life of drudgery in order to do that? I don’t think so. Gadgets and machines are just tools. We can make use of them to make life more manageable. The trick, I think though, is not to allow ourselves to become so dependent on them that we can’t live without them.
We moved into a new home at the weekend, to fairer pastures hopefully. The house needs work, and there’s unexpected issues with the electricity but it’s a lovely big space and I’m really looking forward to getting settled here.
As you can see, we only have a small garden – nothing like the rolling expanse of New Earth in the Delta Quadrant (a girl can dream, can’t she?!) – so any ‘homesteading’ will have to be on a modest scale but I’m hoping to be able to get a little vegetable growing in there.
It’s a lot more rural than it looks – apart from the few houses around us, we’re about ten miles away from anything. So i still feel a little bit like a pioneer/ prairie girl which is kind of what I was looking for. An isolated farm would have been nicer but this is better than we could have hoped for in reality so I am more than happy.
And I’m really excited to have a kitchen that I can happily and comfortably cook in now – I can’t wait to get baking! I’m still waiting for my books which have been in storage all the time we were renting. But I’m a dab hand at improvising now – a little of this, a little of that!
Kes is out in the kitchen right now whipping up some scrambled eggs for the troops while I write my log, and the boys are tending the fire (a real, open log fire, so Chakotay is loving it!)
Finally, I may have mentioned the intermittent time-space portal which allows us to communicate with Earth on occasion? Last week we had a surprise visit from my mother who is now too elderly to look after herself, so it looks like that may be a permanent visit.
We’ve put ‘Nanna’ in what would have been the baby’s room. It feels like the final twist of the knife, but I will just have to put on my Captain’s hat and suck it up. She is family, after all.
Without putting too fine a point on it, I am no longer pregnant.
It has been a week now and although grief has a nasty way of winding you when you least expect it, coming over you in unexpected waves as it does, I think I am starting to see light at the end of the long dark tunnel and I hope I can look forward to some better days soon.
We hadn’t planned this pregnancy at all – we had given up a long time ago (although I never stopped being broody and wishing for more babies) but I had more or less come to terms with the fact that, at 45, more babies weren’t very likely.
This was my 6th loss too, which seems far more than my ‘fair share’.
Anyway. I need to fold up all my hopes and dreams and plans of babies and young children and lay them back in the ‘hope chest’ and lock it away for now.
I stumbled across this blog post this evening and loved the sound of it and actually, as you know, my background is very ‘traditional’ but my heart pulls me in two seemingly opposing directions (career woman Starship captain/ homemaker, wife and mother), so I love the idea of successfully combining traditional homemaking with a healthy and robust feminism.
I have bookmarked this blog to read through properly later.
A friend of mine posted this photo on facebook. I don’t know who wrote it or where it originates but I liked it and thought I would share it as it seems to me to somewhat embody the homesteading/ self-sufficiency spirit, as does this list once posted in The Idler Magazine:
“Bake bread, muck about, quit moaning, stop consuming, start producing, back to the land, end usury, embrace beauty, ignore the state, reform is futile, hail the spade, hail the quill, love thy neighbour, be creative, dig the earth, make compost, down with health, down with safety, down with work, down with pensions, be alive, be merry, BE FREE!!”
What rules, guidelines, mottoes or principles do you like to live by?
After my youngest son Kim was born 13 years ago, I had a run of miscarriages including twins at 14 weeks and since then, 5 years of secondary infertility. I had assumed that I was not far away from menopause.
I wasn’t expecting to be a mom again. I really thought it was too late, that it was outside the realm of possibility.
But here we are!
Chakotay has told me that I mustn’t get my hopes up, and although I’m thrilled (and slightly terrified!) I dare not get excited.
So what has happened to suddenly increase my fertility so late in life? Two things have changed – 1) I gave up dairy and eggs in addition to meat, so I’m now eating a plant-based, vegan diet. And 2) My doctor put me on Metformin to help me lose weight. I haven’t actually lost any weight sadly but it may have corrected my hormonal imbalance just enough.
I know it’s too early to start thinking about names – there may not be a baby after all, it’s just too soon to know if this will be a successful pregnancy. But favourites in the Chakotay household so far are: Jean-Luc or Luke for a boy and Annika (as in Hanson – Seven’s human name) for a girl. I’m not sure though I might have to veto that one!
I absolutely love being married, and I love being a wife. I didn’t think I would – leaving Voyager and relinquishing my control and authority over all my starship personnel was a huge wrench.
It took me a while to give in and accept that the Voyager crew had finally, completely and totally abandoned us, and that this was to be our life. I think that I even went through a period of a kind of mourning.
This wasn’t the life I had envisaged for myself at all – I had studied and trained and aimed and directed myself toward leadership, space travel and exploration, being a wife and mother was just not on the agenda.
I can’t imagine having been happy having this kind of relationship with Mark (the boyfriend I left in the Alpha Quadrant). When I think about it, I know that I would have felt suffocated and need to get away. But I have never felt that way about Chakotay. I guess that it makes a difference being married to the right person. Yes, you could work at it. But it has never felt like hard work with Chakotay. Yes, when the children were small, life was hard-going. But I never doubted him. He was always the same strong, dependable Chakotay.
Now the children are older and he is off most days with the two eldest, teaching them survival skills and so on. I don’t see enough of him now, and every time he comes home it feels as though our love affair just began.