Drudgery or Exercise?


It’s back to cold again today and I’m keeping the fire going. That means carrying wood in from the wood pile. It’s the middle of March. I’m tired of wood and tired of the wood stove. I’m ready for flowers and sunshine. The wood stove is always exciting in the fall. Oh, wood stove, how I have missed you. It’s pretty old right now and it just feels like drudgery. But as I was in the middle of transferring the pile of wood to the wood box inside, I reminded myself that it was good exercise, just like walking around outside to tend the animals, tossing hay, and everything else. It’s a farmy workout program. The last time I was at the doctor, she said, “You’re very well toned.” I said, “I’m a farmer!”

How do your chores feel today? Drudgery or exercise? It will be spring soon…..

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Posted by Suzanne McMinn on March 14, 2011  

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28 Responses | RSS feed for comments on this post

  1. 3-14

    Oh, you’re looking at the bright side! I spend too much time sitting on my butt reading blogs rather than doing farm chores… At least lawn mowing season is about to ramp up so my butt will be parked on a riding mower…

  2. 3-14

    We have about 6 inches of new snow here on top of the wood pile. I was up and down a lot last night, because the snow was very wet and heavy and I did not want to have a rip-roaring fire in the wood furnace if the power went out. Sigh I have a wood stove sitting next to the furnace and the shovel is there. I have been known to move the fire from one to the other, but it is a dance of finesse. Don’t want to be stumbling about with a shovel full of hot coals. But, like you, I’m tired of it now and long for the stove/furnace tending to be but a mere memory.

  3. 3-14

    I think there’s a reason why our ancestors didn’t have excersize bikes and fitness centers and Weight Watchers…..with all that work they didn’t need them!

  4. 3-14

    Sounds like very good exercise to me. I’d rather be farming than at this desk job.

  5. 3-14

    I have a nasty cold so today, drudgery for sure!

  6. 3-14

    It is maple sap collecting time so it feels like exercise with sunshine in a bucket!

  7. 3-14

    Sounds like a most excellent way to avoid health club memebership fees!

  8. 3-14

    :purpleflower: I got some great exercise yesterday cleaning out my new garden spot! Twenty years of junk thrown into an awesome skeletal gazebo with brick floor. Now the gardening can begin! I guess I’ll get more exercise when I go to the dump!! It was like mucking a stall, which is great exercise too. That, and all the other cleaning and chores, running around chasing the dog, and you’ve got my fitness plan! I know you must be in great shape with all of those animals!! :) :sun:

  9. 3-14

    Well, this winter just seems to go on and on and on, so I will be happy to see spring come.But after the hot days of summer, I will be happy for the crispy fall days too.
    As far as chores go, I don’t see them as jobs I have to do. The routine of chores is part of the pattern of the life we live. There is something comforting in the regularity of farm work.
    I get great satisfaction out of tending my chickens and milking. Talk about instant gratification…I am endlessly amazed that I put out grain, hay, water, or turn our charges out to pasture, and we get back eggs, milk, poultry, pork, beef and lamb for our table and to sell.
    Are there days when things go wrong and I want to pack it all in and sell out everything for a dollar? You betcha! Fortunately, those days are few and far between.Mostly, I am grateful “to be in the zone”, in rhythm with Nature, and not thinking of choring to be a chore, but rather a joy.

  10. 3-14

    Suzanne, you have a great attitude. From all your chores you are getting exercise and also a good dose of vitamin D from the sunshine. “Farmy” exercise is the best!

  11. 3-14

    I’m betwixt and between today on chores vs drudgery. Got a ton of yard work to be done still and spring is here for us, so I’m actually running late. But it is satisfying when you get to see the results.

  12. 3-14

    Oh, hauling wood and feeding the stove! I’m about ready to quit for the season, too. For me, it’s less about being tired of the hauling and more about being weary of vacuuming up all the little wood and bark fragments that end up all over my living room. It thawed out enough for our pile of logs to emerge from the snow, so yesterday my husband chainsawed and split and we both stacked–already preparing for next year!
    Chores are great exercise–I actually fight my better half for the opportunity to clean the horse shed and the chicken coop because I get a good workout!

  13. 3-14

    I miss wood heat. I grew up with it and don’t miss the mess or getting wood, but I do miss backing up to the stove when I come indoors from the cold. It’s almost done for this year, hang in there and toast some marshmallows for me.

  14. 3-14

    It depends on the chore…feeding the chickens is fun and exercise. Snow shoveling the driveway is drudgery (yet exercise)…

  15. 3-14

    I can feel the same way about my farm chores. Once I’m out there with my critters though, I don’t want to go back in!

    My doctors hasn’t said anything complimentary since I started farming. Maybe my sleek, toned core has yet to surface from beneath its doughy enclosure? ;)

  16. 3-14

    Drudgery, because it’s inside chores today. :?

  17. 3-14

    I try to vary it a lot – hauling wood one day, digging the septic another day, clearing the garden the next. Good exercise.

  18. 3-14

    Why is it that I feel colder now than I did in December and January. :cry:

  19. 3-14

    Drudgery-Exercise…that’s being redundant!!!

    I’m all the way with Jersey Lady! I love the rhythm of nature and my being in tune with it.

    Although ;)….I am tired of gathering wood, cutting wood, splitting wood, hauling wood….I love love love a fire but…enuff now. Plus keeping the chick’s warm. We are in Florida and we use the FP for our heat. I had it all put back in the woodshed (Spring ya know :fairy:) and then for the last 3 morns we have had frost-frost in Florida in March…today frost this morning and we hit 78 this afternoon. :hole:

    Come August I’ll be beggin’ for mercy.

    It’s all exercise if your butts in motion they way I see it!!! :sheepjump:

  20. 3-15

    I just emptied the ash pan and put more wood in the stove before I get ready for bed. I am sick of winter, but am still glad to be using the woodstove til it really warms up here. I just hate hearing the furnace kick on (luckily it almost never does). I can feel my head start drying out as soon as it does. Our wood shed is quite a ways from the house so I pull a big rubbermaid cart over to it, fill it with wood, drag it over to the porch, then carry in enough to fill the woodbox. I cover the rest of the wood in the cart with a tarp til we use it. It is work (exercise) but I don’t mind it. I can’t wait til the grass greens up and the trees bud out. I really don’t have very many flowers in the yard anymore because of the dogs, but I am kind of looking forward to mowing again. I really enjoy chores that get me outside. My son is putting some of the shock fencing around another part of the yard so I can put in a small garden this year. Can’t wait to get going on it.

  21. 3-15

    Some days it is a little boring…but if you are moving it is always exercise in my opinion!

    I can start out feeling draggy but once outside and working it seems to invigorate me and I love that.

  22. 3-15

    Drudgery! I’m so done with the cold and the rain and the mud. :hissyfit: I want to get out there and plant my onions, work my bees and hunt mushrooms. Winter is hanging on tightly this year.

  23. 3-15

    I gave up on drudgery, I have lost 60 pounds in the last 4 years just keeping up with the work here. Some places we are up to boot tops in mud so it makes the going more careful and determined. Exercise!

  24. 3-15

    I want your chores, all you farm people. I have the house work stuff you all have, without the gardening. And while you’re out hauling wood and feeding animals, I’m standing in one spot, pouring coffee all day. I’m glad to have a job and all but I was meant to have a farm.

    And now you say “At least you don’t have to shovel poop.” HA! say I. We have five, count them, FIVE cats. I begged my husband to stop after two, he didn’t. My poop shoveling takes place in the basement. I’d rather be out in the barn with the healthy poop. That reminds me, I want to shovel the outside dog yard before the frost is gone this morning. It makes the job easier.

    Oh and speaking of healthy poop, one of my jobs at work is to clean the bathrooms. I can’t compost that.

    On the other hand, I have a huge fear of chopping off a leg while I’m splitting wood. Can some one explain to me how that works? The worst that can happen to me at work is my hand gets burnt while I pour coffee over it. I’ve done that so many times, I don’t even feel it anymore…

    Sorry for the rant but I get itchy this time of the year. I told my family the other day “The way I want to die is face down in the middle of my potato patch.” I should have specified that I want to be a hundred years old or so when I do.

    And actually I haven’t heard any of you farmers really complain about your chores, just maybe the weather.

  25. 3-15

    Oh, and lest you think I am a total slob, (Slob, yes, total, well… ;) ) we have two kitty litter pans in that basement. Plus one in the bathroom and one in the laundry room. And one of the ones in the basement is gi-normous. It was a cheap Rubbermaid-ish under the bed storage box. The cats just prefer with that one to remove all the litter (shredded newspaper) place it on the floor around the edge of the box and poop there. Why? Probably just to make my life a little more miserable. They are cats, after all.

  26. 3-15

    Oh, boy, I wish I could do some of the chores you all mention. This fall I unexpectedly developed a heart condition and haven’t even been able to walk around the block in spite of a number of procedures and so many different medicines I’ve got a sack full of empty medicine bottles. I’ve been just sitting here in the snow trying to breathe.

    Boy, this is NO FUN! Believe me I’d love to know I could do any of my chores, much less bringing in wood. I want my active, too-full life back again! So, guys, when you moan about your chores, remember those of us who CAN’T do ordinary things, much less chores. Sigh! I’ll live through your stories and dream of spring and better health. Wish me luck with one more procedure at the end of the month. I’ll need it and your prayers.

  27. 3-15

    Can they be both?

  28. 3-15

    Joy, here’s wishing you well and hoping you have a complete recovery!

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