…excerpt from my book (coming soon…)
I was happiest sitting in my bedroom playing with Barbies or lying underneath a shade tree reading all day. Realizing I was shy and possibly headed down the path of a backward farm girl, Momma signed me up for playgroups and charm school and all kinds of functions I never much enjoyed. In fact, all the Keiser mothers plotted ways to force their children together as often as possible—a break for the adults, an opportunity for the kids to learn a few social skills.
Last year the mothers formed a 4-H group for all the girls. At last, a real club. Something I could get behind.
“Momma will we get to wear special uniforms?” I asked.
“Maybe so,” she said as she poured tea in all the glasses. I could tell she wasn’t really listening to me because she started whining to Daddy about how she needed a new car. I wasn’t paying much attention to them either. Even though it seemed I was only eating supper, I was busy memorizing the official 4-H pledge for our first meeting tomorrow after school. Plus I was thinking about the pig I would raise in our backyard.
Right off I realized the mothers had no idea about the inner workings of a proper 4-H club. Instead of raising a cow or building a chicken coop, we learned to make no-bake lemon icebox pies.
What kind of fake 4-H club was this?!
I didn’t want a cooking badge. I had already perfected a variety of desserts with my Easy Bake Oven. I needed livestock.
How many times had I explained to my friends—yes we are farmers, no we don’t raise animals, yes we grow cotton and soybeans and wheat. It was like we had half a farm—the boring half. I stuck with 4-H an entire long year because Momma made me, but I never saw or touched or smelled a single farm animal. I always wondered if I quit right before it got good.
Grace Grits and Gardening
I pledge my head to clearer thinking,
My heart to greater loyalty,
My hands to larger service,
and my health to better living,
for my club, my community, my country, and my world.