Thursday, February 16, 2012

Business in the Front, Party in the Back: Why Our Farm Resembles the Mullet

Remember the mullet?  That almighty hairdo of the 1980s, that has been succinctly described as "business in the front, party in the back?"  Byron and I were in a bookstore once (remember those??)  and spent the good part of an afternoon giggling over a book depicting the surprisingly diverse variations of this hair style.  And just to keep it real, I grew up in the 80s and owned parachute pants.  They were black with fluorescent pink zippers. 

Recently, Byron decided that the landscaping plan for our farm will resemble the mullet by taking on the look of "business in the front, party in the back."  In short, the front of our house will be meticulously landscaped, much like carefully coiffed, feathered bangs.  And the back?  Think less managed, organically flowing, and sometimes downright messy.

In actuality, this is a marriage between our penchant for visually pleasing aesthetics and the reality of life, having kids, and farming.  Ever read The First Four Years by Laura Ingalls Wilder?  I recall well her description of their yard: farm implements scattered here and there and projects unfinished due to the busyness of starting out.  Reading that made Laura a bit more real and human to me.

So here's a peek into what we're doing. 

We have a circle in front of our house, around which we park the cars.  A getup like this usually boasts wrought-iron gates and a fountain, right?  Not so for us.  Check out the wilderness in the background.  We can't stand it.

Though we're not the wrought-iron gates and fountain types, like I said, we like our aesthetics.  So Byron spent an entire day recently measuring and weeding out the circle, and then spreading gravel to the front walk.  Trust me, it looks a million times better.  He'll soon plant grass in the dirt circle in the middle, and in the spring or fall we'll plant boxwoods around the perimeter (yes, I know they're not edible).

OH MY! I am keeping it real today!  This is the knock-down, drag-out, all-night version of "party in the back."  The calf hutch that we need to fix and the rain barrel system are members of the backyard, but the toys are usually put away.

So we did a little clean-up.

Included for cuteness alone.
How obsessed are you with aesthetics?

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  1. The back is always were the fun is around a house!

  2. When I saw your title for this post, I laughed out loud, then knodded - because I know what you mean.

    We tried the pretty farm bit when we first moved here, but the fact my hubby brings home all kinds of recycled materials and farm implements soon took over. It's a never ending battle.

    Good luck with your project! This was a great post! :) Thanks so much for sharing at Rural Thursday.

  3. Great post and what a creative take on it!

    I often include pics just for the cuteness factor ;-) Glad you linked up today!

  4. Love the tone of this post. And even though the boxwoods are not edible, they do stay green all year long, and that will help sustain you through winter.

  5. what a funny way of sayin' it! love that

  6. Now I know we're not the only ones with interesting stuff laying around! Sometimes I admit to putting on blinders because it drives me crazy that there's so much "stuff" around our measly 1 1/2 acres, but my husband assures me it is all useful. uh...right.