Not Your Average Sunday Morning

When a farmgirl shows up at a city church, she may look "normal" by the time she gets there, but let me tell you, her morning was anything but normal! At least compared to a city girl's morning routine...which was all I knew until this year. I clean up well {I even wore a dress yesterday!}, but you should've seen me for the first three hours of my morning!

When I lived in the city, I couldn't have imagined life on a farm if I tried. Oh, I thought I knew: front porch rocking, beautiful views, peace and quiet. Sure sounds dreamy! But wait until you add animals to the mix! I never dreamed of cleaning duck troughs before church. Don't try this in a dress. Or finding rotten eggs at the bottom of the water-filled trough. Who would've known? Or rounding up chickens who've wandered far beyond the fence. It's like herding cats. Or waking up to three otters in the pond. What? Otters in Tennessee? 

Yes, there are otters here. River Otters to be exact. The ones you think of as cute and playful...until they're in your pond. I've done some research on river otters since yesterday morning, and here's what I've learned: they are protected in most cases. Endangered species type of protection. Unless they're in your private pond eating every fish you've stocked in that pond...and going after your duck eggs. Then it's game on with the otters.

But we don't have fish yet. Because our pond has some problems. And until we have the extra cash to fix it, well...it looks like this:

Green because it needs aeration; low because it's leaking.

See the three otters in the middle of the picture? {They look tiny because I'm standing on the opposite side of the pond and this is as far as my zoom would go, but they're pretty good sized.} My dogs saw them, too. And at 5AM, they let us know something wasn't right on the farm. They sounded the alarm with a booming bark...the kind that lets us know there's an intruder of some sort.

I wish I had a picture of the dogs in action. Tails curled tightly, eyes fixed intently, ears perked, standing at the edge of the water looking like they were going to dive in. Those otters didn't stand a chance...

...until I walked over and the dogs ran around the pond to greet me. Sweet, gentle puppies. But when the otters tried to make their escape, the dogs took off like racehorses. Part of me was horrified and fearful for the otters; the other part of me was in awe of what my dogs could do if our farm was in danger.

I'm sorry to tell those of you who have a thing for otters, but one of them didn't make it. I wish the dogs could make a distinction and just run them off the property, but I don't know how to train them to do that. The truth is, they did their job.

One day when our pond is filled with fish, we'll be thankful that our dogs can keep the otters away. Because when you stock a pond only to find that otters are eating all your fish, it feels like you've been robbed. {Unless you're stocking the pond to attract otters...who eat up to 2.5 pounds of fish a day and leave the smelly carcasses for you!}

Once the dogs knew their job was done, they returned calmly to the barn and assumed their position at the front of it. Then passed out until they were needed again.

Buddy and Bella, our gentle giants...
having a chat about the river otters before their nap.

Check out those dirty paws!

As I pulled in the church parking lot all cleaned up in my dress and lip gloss, I had to laugh at all I had seen and done before putting on my "church look" that morning. If we went to a true country church, I'm sure we'd all be standing around sharing crazy farm stories, but in the city, I'm thinking my farm stories are a little much for quick hallway chatter. {Still my least favorite part of church.} And so I share it with you here! Thanks for listening, sweet blog friends!

In other farm news, one of our Buff Orpingtons {the yellow ones} started laying this week!

Our first brown egg.
They start out so small and cute!

The more animals we add, the more interesting things are around here. It's a lot of work and a huge learning curve, but we're all four working together in a way we never did in the city...and that's a blessing!

I hope your week gets off to a great start!

P.S. It's posts like these that make me laugh at my blog name. What started as a normal behind the scenes look at a designer's inspiration has turned into farmgirl chronicles with the occasional design post. You just never know where God is going to lead you in this life!


  1. You are living life, Linsey! I adore reading about the antics of daily life on your farm. And be so happy those dirty paws aren't making their way into your home! My Bella is forced to stay outside today because she decided a little digging in the moist ground would be a fun morning activity. Hopefully her barking doesn't drive the neighbors crazy. She thinks every sound and car going down the street is an intruder! My husband can deal with that when he comes home!

  2. Oh girl of mine, how life has changed for you! I cannot help but smile when I think of the before daughter and try to imagine her delight in these goings on. xoxox

  3. God love their sweet muddy paws. Girl we are working as hard as we can to buy our own little piece of Franklin farmland and do the exact same thing! I love reading your blog- it is one way I keep my little farm dream vivid while I do the hard work of getting there. I hope you're loving life here- it's such a great place to be. I'm not sure I've ever loved a place more than this one.

  4. Thanks for this post! My niece and her husband recently bought a new(old) house that has a beautiful pond on the property. She was sharing with me that they have found a fish carcass and couldn't imagine what had happened. Maybe Otters! I will pass the word.

    1. Glad to be helpful with such a "random" experience!

  5. Your farm life makes me laugh! As the mother of boys, I have adopted the saying, "Unleash the hounds!". Not sure where the saying came from, but it can mean different things at different times. Usually, it has something to do with someone acting feisty. Now, when the saying inevitably comes to my mind, I will think of your otters and your strong and gentle puppies. Too funny! :)

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  7. just visiting your site for first time tonight - came over from paige or tara? not sure which one. am totally obsessed. now i need a farm. you are amazing. can't wait to dive in. your taste is stunning but i equally love your heart for God. actually love that the most. Sorry - that was me above, old blog.

  8. Ha! Love it! Like the Steven Curtis Chapman tune, "It's a Great Adventure!"

  9. Oh my! What a journey you are on in this chapter!! It is amazing to me how God creates so much "built in" rhythm in His creation. Thanks for sharing! Hugs to you!!

  10. Wow! I'm hoping there are only sweet moments hidden in the farm-girl chores for you today! You may need to drive yourself in to town for a mani-pedi after your last few weeks! Love the {brutal} honesty! Love the girl who tells it as it is!!!!!!

  11. Roll up those sleeves, Linsey :) I always enjoy reading about daily life on your farm. Keep us posted on those otters!!
    PS - In the city, we have problems with nasty raccoons. They get into fights with cats, and occasionally, dogs.

  12. your story of walking into the city church all dressed up after a morning with real life messes is such a great analogy, right?!

    We're all messes....and we dress ourselves up to look like we're not.

    loving your farm life.


"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? I thought I was the only one." ~ C.S. Lewis

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