Having regular chores was simply part of life growing up on my family’s urban farm. Everyone in our family, both big and small, had their jobs and it gave us all an immense sense of accomplishment to pitch in. Although Juniper is only two, she already has her share of chores on our homestead that are teaching her loads of lessons.
Juniper “assists” us with several chicken-duties: collecting eggs and gently handing them to us one at a time. She fills up their feeders with chicken feed, one small cup at a time. And she delivers garden scraps to the hens, feeding them one leaf at a time through the fence. Even at two, she has a very sweet disposition with animals – a beautiful character trait in my opinion.
She has been an expert garden waterer since she could stand. We expect her to be both wet and entertained with this job. It teaches us as her parents that sometimes it’s ok to just let her make a mess. It teaches her that thorough watering helps our favorite vegetables grow big.
Two is also the perfect age to start harvesting together. Most of her picked berries never make it to the bucket, but she knows that berries grow on bushes and not in cardboard containers. How many kids sadly don’t get that experience of learning where their food comes from? What a lucky little lady Juniper is.
One of the biggest lessons she is learning is patience. You get the sweetest berries when you let them ripen. Those early apples are going to make great pies this fall. And spending time on a job well done leads to delicious rewards.