Creative Fun on the Farm

Look no further than your farm acreage for a place where entertainment and creativity can flourish.

| August/September 2020

 Photo by Kayla Hulsing

Too often, people think a farm is a place of drudgery that can’t feed the creative human spirit. So, when I was asked to write about creativity, music, and art on the farm, I felt inadequate to the task at first, since I’m known as a workaholic. I try to get people to love the farm for the farm’s sake; since I love my work, I don’t need to escape from it.

But the little ditty “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” is also true, especially for children. So what kind of diversions offer outlets for entertainment and artistic expression here on our farm? When I started making a list, I found a lot of things that fit this category. And I found that maybe I’m not such a workaholic after all.

Let’s start with the children. Since we had no TV and we home-schooled, you might think our kids grew up deprived. We didn’t do Little League sports, ballet, or other urban creativity exercises. But their childhood was full of forts, treehouses, and creek dams, same as my childhood and now our grandchildren’s lives.

What could possibly compete with using some old pallets, baler twine, and scrap lumber to build a play area? Whenever urban friends visited, guess where they went, happily, for hours? Out to the forts. With a proper cloth flag waving triumphantly overtop, a homemade fort represents the pinnacle of young imagination. We have a massive woodpile by the outdoor wood furnace; a bit of shoving and repositioning by children turns it into a defensive fortress. Tape a flag on a broom handle, and it’s official.

And what about a hay mow with small square bales? The mother of all playgrounds is a hay mow with tunnels through the bales and ropes hanging from the rafters. It beats anything a gym could ever provide. Oh, the friendships forged and make-believe enemies vanquished in these imaginative play areas are the stuff of memories, imagination, and wisdom.



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