I stood Sunday on the edge of the overgrown weeds, ready to make something on the earthship home feel like movement again. So many thick tall stalks of shriveled up flowers, and seeds all hanging ready to spread with any gentle breeze. We finally got a good soaking rain that luckily was going to make this job a much easier one.. and that, I could really use... easy progress... is there such a thing?!
Starting on the edge of what was the flower bed, I began pulling. One at a time, getting poked with thistle needles, and the puffs of cotton-like seed swirling all around me. Every time I stood up to look.. I became completely overwhelmed with this "small" project.. So, moving forward with my head buried where all I could see was what immediately surrounded me, I kept pulling. Slowly I was able to uncover the flourishing flowers, the overtaking mint, and the stones that had managed to stay in their formations since they were placed there just before the lavender festival. Just before the festival already feels like another lifetime ago.. I guess really it kind of was. The deadline to be out of our home in the woods was the Monday after the festival weekend.
The many months ahead of that Mike and Jason, who had come back to live with us, had been rebuilding our barns, fertilizing the fields, pulling weeds, keeping up with maintenance, and were both completely time consumed with all of that. Pain medication kept Mike moving forward in what we really had no other choice with.. we knew the time was quickly approaching and we needed somewhere to put our things. I spent all of my time making as many products as I possibly could, packing up and going through our belongings, getting into market season, and keeping up with full harvest, like many other crops was earlier than normal. It was the middle of May and I was already working my way down half of our oldest field, slicing with the sickle the sweet and sticky lavender stems.. working on another harvest which I remind myself over and over is truly a "labor of love". Even the famous phrase from Shade "I didn't choose to live on a lavender farm" may have only been said once this year. With all of the changes this year has brought, the kids all really seem to have this unspoken understanding, with lessons wrapped up way beyond their short time here. Lainey put in ten hour days with me in the field, even in the close to 100 degree temperatures. Phoebi became an amazing mini mommy, helping to take care of Mesa, who was around 6 months old. Shade, being an almost teen, really only needed a little push to kick in and help more than any season, ever.
Our Monday came quickly, the last of the move was at around 3am, with the kids asleep on the floor in the last night of being in that home, Mike screwed the lavender bundle hemp onto boards, and several rows at a time Jason and I balanced them, arms shaking from the weight of the fresh bundles, standing on the tailor of the quad runner. Mike drove us out and in several trips, we hung them in their new home in the earthship. We awoke the kids, made the move out to our tent village home in the lavender fields.. and this is where we called home, for a while. The heat was a little much, for our little Mesa, but besides that we had finally made a shift and somehow it felt really good. We have camped so much in our lives that this could just be our vacation for the year. I got a phone call from a dear friend during this time, she explained that someone I don't even know was a manager at the Holiday Inn Roberts Center, and he was offering us his free nights to get out of the heat. I finished up some work at my moms that day and the huge wind storm came through just before we were leaving. Our little tent village, our canopy covering all of the garage sale things we were trying to make some money on, our pop up canopy's, mesas toys, all bent mangled, thrown all over the fields.. This was definitely a moment of throwing my hands up and saying "really!!!?!", and at the same time seeing these big giant hands wrapped all around our lives and everything we do, knowing we are protected by something so much bigger than this. The hotel stay was amazing and perfect, and exactly what we all needed to keep our sanity that night. We stepped away from life, into a two room suite, and it still completely chokes me up every time I think about it...
They were gracious enough to let us stay on employee rates for the rest of the week while we drove back and fourth to work on our barns, and make products, and do everyday work, having another place to call home and soft comfortable beds at the end of each overwhelming day.. Again, the timing was perfect, and my mom was going out of town for the next week. We moved all of our things packed in bags and bins, and made our new home in her's while they were away.
I really am trying to not write a book on here, so without all of the details between, we are now working on coming up with the money for our earthship plans to be re-done, and just really trying to figure out how in the world we are going to keep momentum going.. Making progress again on the building permits and everything needed in order to turn our original dream of wellness retreat and gift shop into the new dream, and necessity, of becoming our home. We really are glued to the farm, so many times we talk about how much easier life could be if we just sold it all and started over, living in a simple home with a simple yard. But following what I feel in my heart does not involve that kind of simplicity for sure, at least not now. The original vision for this space was not just about lavender. It was about providing a space for people to step out of their reality, and into a field of pure purple bliss and be surrounded by simplicity and healing... I just hope that those things do not become out of reach for ourselves in the process... This Prell family definitely gets a lot of exercise, and normal every day tasks truly have become more of a family job. We do our dishes, laundry, and use the porta potties down the field from where the laundry is hung, and down the gravel driveway from where our solar shower is. Things like hot water, and going in the next room to take a bath, or popping the dishes in the dishwasher truly are things that have now become a luxury. I will have to say I am looking forward when we have the supplies and the energy to make a suitable outhouse. That will be a big step up from the chemical filled portapotties that I can say confidently none of us will miss when we look back at this time in our journey.