Farming and Being Present

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As many of you know, in addition to my professional life, I have a small farm (68 acres) in central Virginia. With upwards of 120 chickens and ducks, then another 17 chicks and 10 ducklings, 21 rabbits, 5 pigs, 3 piglets, dozen guinea hens, 7 cats and 3 dogs, a greenhouse, orchard, berry bushes, pastures, woods, gardens filled with weeds now 2 1/2 feet tall, I can easily get overwhelmed and discouraged. I can wallow in despair of ever getting everything done. I see projects everywhere. More likely I will see the glass as half empty rather than as half full. I see what has yet to be done versus what amazing things that I have already accomplished.

I can berate myself for taking on this huge task as my son will remind me “at my age.” While many people ‘my age’ have downsized, have made ‘sensible decisions’ to move into senior living communities (horrible thought) or an apartment in town (also horrible), I have this much larger house, huge property, out of town in the country, rental properties, and stuff up the ying yang. Some days I can feel really stuck and not know how to get out of the monster project I have created for myself.

The end result is that my energy is frequently drained just to the breaking point to manage every aspect of the farm in addition to everything else, including overseeing any workers that I may engage. This has caused me to sometimes get sick especially in the despair of death. The cost of running the operation far exceeds the proceeds from egg or animal sales. Yet, I still want to do it. But what is it really that I am trying to achieve? Why am I doing this?

When my son came to visit recently, he commented that I have so many animals that I don’t really get to enjoy them. And I realized that I was sorting for and noticing what needed attention, what work needed to be done by whom and in what order, and what was not getting done and what would most likely not be done if ever.

My son’s comment struck a cord in me and I made a decision to shift. Even though I have long standing ads to sell some of my animals, the sales have been all too infrequent, and I have not gotten rid of as many as I would like. I did, however, make a deliberate shift in my attention. Instead of sorting for problems, for tasks yet to be done, I have started to deliberately sort for beauty, for pleasure, for noticing the uniqueness of the critters that I have.

If, for example, a cat or dog comes up to me for attention, I am making it a point to  take time to bend down and pet it, not absentmindedly, not out of obligation, but to really notice it instead of walking on by to get the next task done.

I have always been able to unwind with bottle feeding my piggies (or lamb). I caress them as they drink and pay full attention to their cuteness, the big eyelashes, the curl in the tail, the solid, muscular body of each one. Oh, how I love my piggies! Pippies5onMommy1

I picked some flowers, something that I haven’t done for a long time, and put them where I see them on my work table. As I spend a few seconds to admire them, I breathe. I pay attention. I am slowing down to more fully notice my birds, to listen to the ducks laughing raucously, just to watch them.

J2064x1161-03310 Bunnies in Basket J2064x1161-03313

All the time my animals and land were capable of giving me energy, but I had been so focused on doing the work, that I had not been open to receive from them because I was not paying attention. And in not doing so, I was not appreciating their presence. I used to do this, but stopped in all my busyness.

For example, years ago as a college student I read Jean Paul Sartre’s Being and Nothingness, and afterwards started really looking at and feeling and enjoying the living presence of the tall trees on my walks to and from school. I could do that again. Yet, as I have been looking at the trees, I have just been thinking of which ones to cut some down to better see the mountains, and how many I needed of what kind of wood for heating in winter. In other words, I was thinking of how they were in the way, or of their utility, instead of appreciating them as a living consciousness, as a community. So instead of a source of pleasure, many of my trees have been a source of something I have wanted to get rid of or use.


One of the things that drove me to start a farm was that I have always taken such delight in living things–plants, trees, animals of all kinds. I have always found the sound of a rooster thrilling. I was so amused to watch my goats dance on the roofs of the chicken house. I enjoy picking up the fat, soft toads on the walkway at night. The taste of fresh tomatoes or greens from my greenhouse, or freshly picked eggs from my free range, GMO free fed hens is delicious. The aroma of fresh mint or rosemary is incredible. The joy of picking fresh blackberries or blueberries not devoured by the deer is also wonderful.

Roosters-mine  20151225_161314_resized

Joey as baby with me Joey, 1 year




Then my joy of bottle feeding a baby lamb (until it grew up and knocked me down on my face), or watching birth whether of piglets, chicks, ducklings, keets, or bunnies is precious. Oh, the supreme joy of newborns! Each new baby is thrilling. But each death (and farmers see a lot of death) is also heart breaking.

Going through farmland or even to a farmer’s market or fair holds more pleasure for me than any amusement park, restaurant, or most entertainment avenues. Yet, here I was with my own farm, selling at farmer’s markets, and all I thought about was how hard the work was, how much work needed yet to be done, wasn’t getting done, and how much my body ached. Why couldn’t it be easy, or, at least, easier? Why couldn’t I break even financially? The reality was very different than the vision.

Yet, in my heart, I know there can be an energy exchange, a partnership between me and the land, of me and the animals that can give more than it takes. And I know that at least part of that answer lies in me paying attention, sorting for joy, sorting for beauty, sorting for noticing the living presence of these creatures, and being in communion with nature. All this can bring incredible satisfaction and richness in life if only I am mindful.

I look forward to your comments.

Copyright by Roxanne Louise. However, this article may be shared in free online sources only if this copyright notice and link to and  are included with the content.

Why be interested in dowsing?

What is Dowsing?

Dowsing is a highly specialized and ancient psychic art of using a device in a light altered state of consciousness to find vast amounts of useful, accurate information by paranormal means, in other words, beyond your ordinary knowledge, training, or senses of sight, hearing, smell, etc. A dowser (the person using the device) is very specific on what he wants to know. He asks continual questions, one at a time, each question ever more precise until all facets of the subject of his inquiry have been covered and he has all the information he needs before taking action and testing out what information he has gained. In fact, dowsing greatly helps develop analytical skills by formulating good questions and evaluating the results.



Dowsing, also called divining, rhabdomancy, doodlebugging, and water witching, has has been done for thousands of years throughout the world, as it contributed to both the survival of mankind and his physical well-being by helping to find water, food supplies, and other basic needs. Historically, it’s most common use has been for water and for mining operations. However, it has strong military, business, and mental, emotional, and physical health applications as well.

It can also be used to locate lost objects, missing persons, unexploded mines. It can be applied to problem solving and decision making in every field of human endeavor, and all aspects of business and personal life to meet your basic needs, improve your career, finances, success, health, mental and emotional well-being, relationships, and your connection to the divine.

You can (and I have) dowse for the most profitable location for your home or business, the best use of your time or your advertising dollar, the reasons for mechanical car or house problems. You can take it into the supermarket to find the most nutritious and ripe produce. You can take it into the bookstore to pick out the best book for you. You can dowse over a class catalog to determine the percentage of value of any class for you at this time. You can analyze the various pluses and minuses of vehicles, prospective houses or business properties or opportunities, or service providers listed in the yellow pages before you even see them.

Dowsing is profoundly helpful for mental and emotional problems. It helps you find and then clear the relevant key issues or blocks, negative beliefs or judgments, emotions, and stuck energies.  Dowsing can help to understand others including yourself, your friends and family, clients or customers, their needs and how to best help or relate to them. It can help you to resolve your own issues thereby improving all of your relationships.

Therapists like myself can incorporate dowsing into their practice to locate a client’s issues and blocks before that client comes in, and develop a treatment strategy, saving time and greatly increasing their efficiency and effectiveness.

Have you ever had a vague uncomfortable feeling without understanding why or what it meant? Dowsing has helped me to understand myself much better, and to tune into my deep inner feelings. Dowsing has helped me also to interpret my dreams, to clarify my meditations and my needs, to refine my goals, and achieve greater peace of mind.

When I was trying to decide on a new office location, I used a pendulum to work over a map. I asked to find those communities with people that would be most receptive to my hypnosis services and willing to pay for them. I then dowsed to locate those communities that would be a central, convenient and attractive hub of the clients and students I already had, and the communities to which current and potential clients were willing to travel to see me. I wrote up a list of all my criteria in the decision making process, and through dowsing I ranked those criteria in order of importance, my ‘must have’. I also wrote up a list of what I didn’t want, and dowsed out which were ‘must not have’. Then I applied dowsing to determine and rank how each possible office measured up, and discounted any that had any items on the ‘must not have’ list. This was immeasurably helpful. This procedure enabled me to obtain a most wonderful office suite, much newer, more beautiful, closer to home, with plentiful free, safe parking, and with easy major highway access. I used this new space for many years.

I again used map dowsing to move out of state, to locate possible areas that would fit into my criteria. I have used the same procedure to buy real estate. This really helped to narrow down my search and make decisions.

Dowsing can applied to all sorts of health issues, veterinary care and animal communication. Some combine dowsing with agriculture, animal husbandry, and gardening. Some incorporate it into feng shui consultations. Others locate and clear non-beneficial energies. The uses are endless.

dowsing cover frontMy dowsing specialty is finding the root cause, key issues, blocks, limiting decisions, addictive thinking or fears behind any problem or negative repeating pattern. Dowsing can identify the main drivers behind habits or behavior such as why a person smokes, overeats, or is stuck in a rut. I locate the negatively charged time frame and events that need to be addressed. My dowsing book, Therapeutic Dowsing and Telepathic Healing, is a direct result of writing chart after chart for my hypnotherapy practice as well as for my self-use.

Dowsing is both a skill and an art that like anything worth doing takes years of continuous application, trial and error, common sense, and the wisdom and guidance of mentors to perfect into a reliable, high quality tool. But because of its broad applications and the many all-around benefits to development of the self that occur, it is well worth the effort.

Dowsing also greatly increases your gut level instincts, intuitive abilities and psychic perceptions because you are working in an altered state of consciousness and tapping into that realm of one consciousness in which all minds are connected and all information accessible. The result is that you develop both hemispheres of the brain and bring all faculties of mind into use and cooperation.

For more information, contact Roxanne Louise at 434-263-4337, or See her  website or other articles on her blog.

I look forward to your comments.

Copyright by Roxanne Louise. However, this article may be shared in free online sources only if this copyright notice and link to and  are included with the content.