Hello; come on in.
Welcoming Mat is placed at My Old Rickety Back Door
Young and new to the farming operation, I quickly learned where the welcoming mat was placed in my old farm house. That was at my old rickety back door. I made the assumption that we would welcome guest and family in the clean front door and leave the back door for farm traffic. This door is where the dirt, the mud, the manure, the straw and the greasy, stinky clothes travel through daily. Basically, the connection from our house to the farm.
Stepping on My Welcoming Mat
But farmers don't necessarily work that way, at least mine doesn't. You see, you never know who is going to follow Farmer Tim in the back door. I used to be horrified at the mess and the smell, the guest endured to get up into my house. It was usually a feed salesman or seed salesman, an insurance agent, or a hungry farmhand. It didn't matter to Farmer Tim, they were welcomed in the back door. They were served a glass of lemonade or a cold ski and continued with their meeting at my kitchen table. When the meeting was over and their glasses were empty, they followed my farmer out my back door.
Our kids followed suite as they grew older and had friends out to visit. It didn't matter to my kids, they were welcomed in the back door. And yes, I cleaned that door daily but one kiddo or farmer through that old rickety back door, and it was dirty again. Straw. Dust. Dirt. The smells. It was never ending. I swear, it doesn't matter if they strip naked outside and walk in, there is still an odor or dirt at my old rickety back door. Farm life is just dirty and smelly.
You're Not a Guest, You're Family
So I questioned myself, like most farm wives do, how am I going to stop this mess? I am sure you are thinking the same thing. Can't they clean off outside with a hose or something? I would also ask myself, "Aren't the guest going to leave my house horrified at the mess at my back door?"
My answer now, is no. We live in reality here on the farm and that includes the dirt at my door. I learned along the way, if you walk in my old rickety back door with my farmer or one of my kiddos you are not a guest, you are family. When you visit, you will step on my welcome mat into my home, through the straw, the manure smell, and the muddy boots at my old rickety back door and be greeted with a glass of sweet tea because that's Just Farm Life.