Posted by: rivettingkatetaylor | September 9, 2009

Getting dirty

Dirty in the mud sense of the word, not filthy as in mind.

Kids with grass stained knees and mud all over their hands are awesome (except when I only realise it in the middle of dinner and they’re eating a chop in their fingers) because it means they have been out and about experiencing the great outdoors.

Ripped farm shirts mean they’ve climbed a tree, wet socks means they’ve waded in the creek, muddy hands means they’ve been building dams, mud on the faces means they’ve had a good scrap with it. I love it. It’s fresh, good old-fashioned fun.

And my kids are hardly ever sick. Sure they have runny noses once or twice over summer but you can count both their absences from school each year on one hand. So many people are fanatical about hand washing and I know we do have to be more careful in these days of swine flu, but really.

Of course, having this state of mind is really helpful when you are as disorganised and as bad a housekeeper as me. Did you see my blog about cooking pikelets for the carpet layers recently. And the house was tidy!! I’m the fourth of four girls and I think Mum gave up when she got to me.

And I was only ever good at helping with the feeding out, drafting or putting the milking cow out. No responsible farm jobs for me.

Actually there’s another storyline. We had to share jobs amongst the four – feed the dogs, do the chooks, peel the potatoes or put the cow out. Then as it came down to just me at home – I did all four! Kind of. When I wasn’t too busy pretending to be doing homework with a book hidden inside a folder. But my kids do chores. It’s good responsibility to teach them early.

Whether it be feeding the chooks or the pigs, mixing up the lambs milk and feeding them, emptying the dish washer, they learn skills early that they will take for granted later. Milk powder is so much nicer these days – I remember tipping it into a bucket and having to squish it all with our hands til it was smooth. That sweet smell brings back memories!

In response to last week’s blog about “it’s over so quick”  – Takapau has experienced another fatality.

We had a 27-year-old mother of two killed in daylight on the highway last week and now we have lost a 24-year-old great guy at 2.30 in the morning.

I lost a close friend on the night of my 21st so I know the memory will stay with those people for a long time (the friends, obviously, the family will never forget).

At least I hope it will. It should. We must have been so lucky when we were younger because while it wasn’t a cool thing to do in our parents eyes, drinking and driving wasn’t frowned on then like it is today. I remember a few accidents and a few lucky scrapes – maybe the fact we were driving beat up Datsun 180Bs that struggled to go over a hundred might have had something to do with it.



  1. […] the National Bank Young Farmer title this year was written by Kate Rivtett-Taylor. Her blog post on Getting Dirty caught the attention of Jamie McKay who had a chat about it with her on the Farming […]

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