For the past three or four days, the entire family has been working on getting a nice, big wood pile stacked up before the first big snow hits the ground. JP has a wood burning stove in his workshop, and he uses it during the cold winter months when he has to work from home, fix cars, etc. We have a number of downed trees on our property, so we used the tractor to pull them out, then JP bucked them with the chainsaw. The girls and I drove the golf cart around with a trailer on the back, filling it with smaller logs and timber. Once JP got the bigger trees bucked, the girls and I stacked the logs into piles.
It was hard, hard work -- the kind of work that leaves you exhausted at the end of the day -- which is why JP and I were so surprised by our up-and-coming lumberjack, Rae.
This girl was seriously unbelievable. She worked her little 4-year-old butt of all day long, picking up full-sized logs, NOT just the little ones, loading them into the trailer, unloading them and stacking them higher than her head..neatly! (She probably stacked 55% of the logs in that front pile she's sitting on in these pictures by herself. Plus more in the stacks behind her.) She gathered timber, swept up the scraps of bark and other kindling and loaded it all into buckets.
She worked straight through her nap, and when Ruby (who had napped) was too tired to keep going and went to bed, Rae stayed up working and working and working until after 10:00 pm. When all the work was done and she had swept the patio clean, she begged us to keep going though we tried to convince her we probably had enough wood for now.
She kept going on and on about how outdoor work was so much fun, and the next day she pleaded to go find more logs to stack. JP and I told her she should consider being a lumberjack as a career, and she was intrigued. Could there really be a job where you got to cut down trees and stack them up...and get paid to do it?!!?
Perhaps the best part of all was watching JP and Rae work together. They definitely bonded even more over this experience. JP talked to her about the verses in Ecclesiastes:
"Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor:If either of them falls down, one can help the other up." Ecc 4:9-10
We talked about having a hard work ethic, building character, and how the Bible tells us to look at the ant, who stores up and prepares for winter. We talked about the importance of every job and how every job has to be done diligently, not just the fun ones.
I was so impressed with our hard-working peanut, and I pray that this was an experience she'll retain in her mind and spirit for a long time. I know I will.