Birdsong and Haying

I am savouring the morning concert of the birds with a solo performance by the ruby-throated hummingbird at his feeder. The solo is more acrobatic than acoustic; accompanied by the whirr of his wings. The solo stands out nicely from the other birdsong which is melodic and liquid. I try to pick out the different calls of the robin, the crow, the phoebe, and the mourning doves,  This concert is in honour of the morning and I am celebrating our getting in the hay for the year.

This spring was cool and very wet delaying the growth of new grass in our pasture, so we fed hay longer than usual and used up all our reserves of hay. We’ve had so much rain this summer that the farmers could not harvest the hay.

This past weekend was one of the few where there were enough dry days in a row to cut, dry and bale the hay. So Bill and I along with our neighbors put in more than 300 bales; 100 for them, 200 for us. We owe them some labour. I am so thankful for their assistance, without it we would still be working on getting in the hay. I find the work itself so satisfying, since it proves that we are again strong and fit enough  to pick up, carry and stack all this hay. It shows that the body can still stretch and throw and sweat and replenish itself, a wonderful tool.

Waterbreak during haying

 It is a way of marking the season, we can relax now that our horses’ feed for the winter is in. I think I need to start planning a summer BBQ for all our neighbours to keep those ties deep and strong.

Optimism versus Pessimism – Is it a Trap?

My husband and I are opposites – I am optimistic generally -ready to lunge into things and Liam is the pessimist – wanting to be sure, researching the risks. Together we achieve a fine balance-though of course I prefer being optimistic!

So I was confused and fascinated to read this quote of Tom Atlee’s about being pessimistic or optimistic when initiating significant change in communities:

The Optimism/Pessimism Trap

I’ve found myself bouncing back and forth between optimism and pessimism. “Things are going to work out well.” Or: ” There’s going to be a real disaster!” It’s been really exhausting.

But lately something’s changing about all this.

I’ve begun to notice how the whole optimism/pessimism dichotomy is a death trap for my aliveness and attention. I watch myself acting as if my sense of what might happen is a description of reality. And what I notice is this: whether I expect the best or the worst, my espectations interfere with my will to act.

That’s so important I’m going to repeat it. Whether I expect the best or the worst, my expectations interfere with my will to act.

I’ve started viewing both optimism and pessimism as spectator sports, as forms of disengagement masquerading as involvement. Both optimism and pessimism trick me into judging life and betting on the odds, rather than diving into life with my whole self, with my full co-creative energy. …..

by Tom Atlee, Crisis Fatigue and the Co-creation of Positive Possibilities, Co-Intelligence Institute

I’m not too sure if I agree with Tom on this one. What about you? Get back to me with your comments.

Hello Sustainers!

This is my first post on this blog. I am interested in exchanging ideas on making our communities more welcoming and supportive of all who live in them; more vibrant and more protective of the environment.

Our species increasing dependence on fossil fuels over the last 100 years has created huge amounts of pollution, pushed many other species toward extinction and resulted in galloping climate change all over the globe.

It has fostered many myths- one of the most pernicious being that businesses and economies can and must grow – ever expanding towards infinity. The last 2 Western generations expected to do better than their parents, to have more possessions, more vacations, a better education and a better job.

But my spidey sense is telling me that the infinitely expanding economies have gone off the rails, in the brand new year 2011.  You may have noticed examples of how the ever expanding economy and prosperity is not quite happening in your corner of the world. Should we expect that this is just a momentary recession, a slow couple of years that’s all? That we’ll get back into the expansionary mode any day now –  or should we be dreaming up new myths and pictures of a different future?

This blog will be devoted to describing a new future, one where we commit to reining in our consumption and finding beauty and satisfaction in  supportive and  embracing communities.