Tag Archives: farm

i am a certified permaculture designer

I studied permaculture for the last two weeks under a New Hampshire instructor named Steve Whitman (who did indeed appear the part of a permaculture instructor from New Hampshire).  For those of you not familiar with the term, permaculture is a word coined by a guy named Bill Mollison from Australia.  It comes from the words permanent and agriculture. Continue reading



Filed under agriculture, development

conservation agriculture and spitting cobras

I might as well start with the most interesting photo, though I won’t actually tell you about the spitting cobra until later in the post (skip to there, I suppose, if you’re anxious)….

I spent a couple of days this last week in Mwakiwasha village.  [You guys are familiar with Mwakiwasha village; we did a couple of photo tours there a while back: mwanza to mwakiwasha and a visit in mwakiwasha village.]  The whole family went out Monday, mostly just to greet everyone, though we also worked out some dates for vaccinating chickens, harvesting rice, and having the interns stay a few days.  It was Harper’s first village visit ever, and our friends were very happy to meet her. 

Yesterday, though, my visit was for some farm work. Continue reading


Filed under agriculture, farming, just photos, living in africa

growing righteousness and praise

I’ll be digging in the garden this week.  So my mind has turned of late to agriculture.  Here are a few of my favorite quotes on the subject:

“The farmer is the only man in our economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale, and pays the freight both ways.”  — John F. Kennedy

“Italians come to ruin most generally in three ways, women, gambling, and farming. My family chose the slowest one.” — Pope John XXIII

“Life on a farm is a school of patience; you can’t hurry the crops or make an ox in two days.” — Henri Alain

“Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil and you’re a thousand miles from the corn field.” — Dwight Eisenhower

“There are three easy ways of losing money – racing is the quickest, women the most pleasant, and farming the most certain.” — Lord Amherst

“Farmers only worry during the growing season, but towns people worry all the time.”  — Edgar Watson Howe

“There are only three things that can kill a farmer: lightning, rolling over in a tractor, and old age.”  — Bill Bryson


And one more:

“For as the soil makes the sprout come up
and a garden causes seeds to grow,
so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness and praise
spring up before all nations.” — Isaiah 61:11

A few thoughts:

  • The nation of Israel was to be on display to all the nations of the world as a people of righteousness and praise.  The church today serves the same function: to be an expression of right relationship with God to all other cultures and communities.
  • We tend to think of Christianity first and foremost as an individual and private endeavor.  Biblical writers seem to look first (and most often) at the larger, more communal picture.  Our view seems to stem from plain old human selfishness tainted by American individualism.
  • Another product of our American individualism is the idea that we possess within ourselves the power to accomplish all things.  In this text, though, we learn it is God’s responsibility to bring righteousness and praise in his church.  He grows them in us much as vegetables grow in a garden.




Filed under musings on the Word, quotes