The Gritty Chapter and Sage Words, too

There comes a time when you either start swimming or drown; we’d been floundering around, waving our arms above our heads, long enough. It was now down to us. So we did what anyone in our situation would do…


we went to a rare breed auction. So we concede that’s not EXACTLY what anyone else in our toxic fug of battered self esteem and woe-is-me would do, but as a tonic we thoroughly recommend  getting out among experts in your aspired field of interest. The good ones totally inspire you and enjoy sharing their knowledge and tricks of the trade. The others, well, it’s always nice to see how valid your practises already are. Of the two goats on offer, neither were pure breeds and one had wonky horns in need of some serious vet attention and a touch of footrot; you don’t get that on The Homestead, we quietly pointed out to each other. 

Self esteem is a funny thing. Like yeast, you just need a little bit of warmth and a touch of sweet and Boom! you’re away laughing.  

Over dinner, we listed the stuff that was getting us down. It took a lot of paper. Some of the items, like the Dave-size hole in the Homestead fabric, were deemed unfixable but we all felt better for talking about him. Other things were, we discovered with our new-found optimism, easy fixes. The surplus-to-requirements Homestead Mobile has now been sold, snapped up for a sum we were all happy with at our local vehicle auction house. 

Our kitchen now has running water and a sink; sometimes even nice folk like us have to nag a little.

As for our legal eagles, they proved to be both professional and contrite on receipt of our carefully worded Dear John letter. Apologies have been accepted, lessons on both sides learned, and our needs addressed. Unconventional our situation may be, but we’ve now got paperwork in place to satisfy even The Bean Counter’s exacting and slightly pedantic standards. 

Slowly but surely all listed items were crossed off until only one remained: Farm Girl’s schooling debacle. Drawing strength from the result a little cage rattling had effected in our kitchen, we girded our loins, picked up the phone and roared. Of course, this was the sort of cowardly roaring we abhor as it wasn’t at the folk who needed to hear it but it did result in a written communication of the sort you’d expect from three giants in education not wanting to admit fault.  Effectively we were offered three options if we wished to retain access to BLENNZ, the one organisation that actually helps level the playing field and offer Farm Girl an education based on her ability rather than her eye sight. Oddly, all three required re entry into the system that really wasn’t working for us; in essence it was “my way or the highway”. After a while we dried our tears, stopped thumping the table, and composed the email telling them we were opting for something that didn’t appear on their list. So our bright, sunny, clever, funny Farm Girl is now once again the sole pupil of Union Homestead Preparatory School and Home for Colourful Thinkers.

With that, the gritty chapter has drawn to a close and we’re feeling pretty good. So good in fact that a celebration dinner of the highest order, marking the launch of this esteemed new education facility was held. Photographs of faculty and alumni were taken.


A six course dinner (one by each Homesteader, The Farmer and Princess Nikita worked as a team) was enjoyed. And Farm Girl chose to unveil her sage words a couple of days early along with her chocolate crackle cakes. 


Amen, Mr Shakespeare, Amen

16 thoughts on “The Gritty Chapter and Sage Words, too

  1. Well done all the Homesteaders for all those boxes ticked. So sorry that the authorities were so obdurate in their thinking but at least, if not helping, they are not obstructing. Loved the Shakespeare.

    • We’re pretty sure we’ve painted a rather large target on ourselves and are fully expecting a home school audit in the near future but our paper trail is pretty conclusive. The Shakespeare quote left us all totally astounded. Farm Girl shuns any guidance when it comes to her turn at hosting the morning teas so we had no idea and it was so perfectly apt.

  2. Perfect quote! And even if things weren’t well, chocolate crackle cakes would be a delicious short term fix. Love the dress code for the celebrations – I’m not sure which is better: Farmer in a skirt or Bean Counter’s shorts and socks combo :). Your girl is going to thrive outside the system, especially because of the kind of family she’s being raised in, not to mention her own grit and positive attitude. I have to admit, a rare breeds auction might not have been my family’s cure to a situation like yours, but sounds like it provided the needed change of gears to move you past the road block. And you managed to come home without any needy goats – well done!

  3. Top quality costumes at the party. A little shouting at people whose fault it isn’t is quite allowable from time to time, especially if it gets results.

    Good luck with the homestead academy. If you want a recorder teacher, I am available at very reasonable rates.

    • I did feel rather bad, having worked in that kind of “canon fodder” role before, as I roared and bellowed but it certainly did work a treat – and probably lowered my blood pressure a tad too 🙂
      I do like the idea of an overseas consultant for music but worry about the commute 🙂

  4. I really admire the way in which you all work as a team. I am so pleased you have sorted out most of your on-going problems and saddened but not really surprised by your local education authority’s attitude. I am sure FG will do very well in the Homestead Academy – brilliant quote btw.

  5. Hi, Great to read that you have been able to prevail in overcoming recent difficulties and are now ready to move on to new adventures and challenges.
    I wish the Union Homestead Preparatory School and Home for Colourful Thinkers every success.

Thoughts? Comments? Advice? We'd love to hear from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s