Thursday, 6 September 2012

Bringing in the Sheaves

Harvest is undoubtedly one of the busiest times on a colony. At my colony, we raise wheat, oats, barley, canola, beans and potatoes. At the peak of this season you can find one crew combining and another baling or swathing, with the field boss overseeing all of it. we have three combines, which means a tractor and grain wagon brings the grain from the combines to one of two waiting semi trucks. These haul the grain to large bins on the colony. This year we've been blessed with exceptional crops and we now have only potatoes left to harvest!

While the men are busy on the fields, there's a flurry of activities at the communal kitchen. Here all meals are prepared for the entire community. During harvest time there's extra work, as the men in the field each get their meals brought to them, so as not to waste precious harvest time with the entire crew stopping their work to come home for lunch and supper. Some colonies have enough man power and are able to work in shifts. But since our colony has a kitchen cabinet factory this is not the case.

Once this phase of harvest is complete, (Some years it isn't, which makes things extra busy.) there are potatoes to dig at our colony. These are raised for McCain and providing we have cool dry conditions, potatoes usually takes about three weeks to harvest. (For a more detailed post of this process, click here.)

Like farmers all over the globe, putting in long hours comes with the territory. Many times, our hours are not dictated by a clock, but by the tasks at hand. For the most part though, working together towards a common goal, be it harvesting, preparing meals or any other chore, enhances the joy of our 'all things common' journey. 'We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves...'

"I brought you into a bountiful country,
To eat its fruit and its goodness."
Jeremiah 2:7


  1. Thanks for showing this because for one thing, farming, open spaces, workers at work, all make great photography, but also because I like learning how you all do things on a daily basis as well as seasonal.

    Here's an off-topic question regarding working in the kitchen. Are people given a choice what they want to do on the colony, or is it chosen for them? If you have a woman that really dislikes cooking and being in the kitchen can she do something else, while someone who loves to cook take her place?

    I hate bringing up Meet the Hutterites, but they had a kitchen "boss" I guess it's called, and she said her daughter would then do that. What if her daughter felt drawn to something else? Or does everyone take a turn at different things? Thanks ~ :)

  2. Hope this answers your questions, Imperfect Housewife: We grow up knowing that there are certain places where we will get a chance to work at, including cooking, baking, gardening, canning, butchering... Unless of course you're somebody like the headcook or teacher. I believe, because the variety of work, coupled with the joy of doing it together, far outweighs anybody's desire to be doing something else instead. Of course, there are things you'd rather not do, the same as for people in all walks of life. However, it's not really an issue here. Since we choose to live this life, we simply take everything in stride, knowing we're serving the community and not just ourselves.

    As for 'Meet the Hutterites', I wouldn't use it to learn more about the Hutterite way of life. It's quite frankly, a distorted portrayal, as you most likely read in my response on this blog.

  3. Thanks, that does make it clearer. I don't want to beat a dead horse when it comes to that show, but I could tell off the bat it wasn't a true depiction. I have too much of an interest in Hutterite, Amish, and Mennonite cultures and life (as well as other religions) to know it was a "show".

    So it sounds like everyone helps and it's a little of everything. If I could swap someone doing my dusting for me doing their ironing I'd sure do that in a heartbeat! ha ha Thanks for answering the question - hope you had a nice weekend. ~ Beth Russo (The imPerfect Housewife - I really need to blog more now that I think of it) :)


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