Monday, June 04, 2007

The Farm

It's the land of red dirt, red pick-up trucks and red barbecue sauce.
It has been family land since 1793 or 94. Its three hundred acres are shaded by tall pines, scrub oaks and old pecans. It has seen its share of cotton, corn and watermelons and now is home to quail, pheasant and deer.

There have always been things to do at the farm whether for a day or a week . This year the family reunion there was only a little different. Now there is a lovely covered pavilion and a pretty fancy skeet range. (I found my aim at the clay pigeon to be better with the camera than the gun.) The "hayride" minus the hay but with cushy seats is pulled by a tractor. There is a new coat of paint on the old house and horses and new puppies at the barn. The children played and got muddy in a welcome rain, the teenagers rambled on golf carts and on foot, the twenty somethings had their own agenda, the older folks did a little of everything and sometimes age didn't matter. Maybe it wasn't that different.

Some would say there is a special feeling about a place with red dirt. Perhaps so. There is evidence that the family's ancestors moved through five states, stopping along the way to establish homesteads where ever there was land with red earth, tall pines and scrub oaks. Whatever it is, these acres welcome this family home.

Most of the people who were there on Sunday remember names only as far back as Ma Belle and Daddy Henry, the grandparents of the senior members of the group. We are counting the days now until next week's arrival of another Belle (or Henry) who will continue the tradition of hugging cousins, eating good food and catching up on family news "at The Farm."

6 comments:

KJ said...

What a treasure! We're hoping our lake house will eventually collect the same sort of memories for our extended family.

Annette Bush said...

The memories to be made by the new generations will not be the same as those which we have -- of out-houses, wood stoves and plain old target shooting. But life goes on.and the memories you are building now will be different, but fun ones for your folks . . . .
A

Anonymous said...

I love the thoughts stirred by this post, Annette! My own house sits atop a red clay hill with the rocks that go with that soil. When the kids were small I discovered quickly that all it took to make a great stain from it was to apply detergent and water to it! :)

Love the photos.

Pat

Annette Bush said...

Thanks, Pat. Funny how we forget what the color of the earth means to us -- red clay especially. I know what you mean about the stain. My aunt always claimed that her daughter's hair was red because I took her to play in a red clay gully and she could never get the stain out!
A

Joyce said...

I, too, have memories of a "homestead" that belonged to my Aunt and Uncle. They had family reunions there and I met many relative that I hadn't seen before and haven't seen since.

The soil there is black and rich and the prairie spreads forever towards the horizon. The sky is big!

I like the photo.

Annette Bush said...

Joyce
I'm glad I stirred some memories for you, too. It's kind of nice knowing there are people out there who share your ancestors even if you never see them again. I'm fortunate to have several family lines which have large reunions.

Nice description. I've never seen the prairies, so I can't imagine how big the sky must be! I wonder if prairie soil has its own distinctive odor like the black, rich river soil at my house.

A.