This chapter of our story begins about 4 months ago. My husband Jason and I had one of those rare moments in our hectic lives to sit and talk and dream. Luckily, it seemed that we were on the same page. Though we loved the home we purchased just 2 years ago, the country was calling us! We started talking about selling our home in the next 5 years and moving to the outskirts of our fair city – that being Milwaukee,WI. We envisioned a few acres to roam and let our kids grow like the veggies we planned to live off of. Within days we had re-uploaded the Zillow app and we were off! To our dismay, a few acres in the outskirts was going to be well out of price range, even several years from now.
Realistically, you’d think we’d reevaluate and decide to make it a 10 or 20 year plan.
In reality, this became our opportunity to dream. Oh, and dream we did! In a matter of days, our dream of a few acres outside the city turned into our own self-sustaining farm. From veggies the next logical step became chickens. So simple to raise. Such a difference in the flavor of an egg.
One night I made the mistake (?) of going on Pinterest to look up hobby farming. One look was all it took. Jason was seated next to me on the couch, both of us absorbed in our own electronic devices (something we dreamed would change with our future lifestyle change).
He must have jumped 6 inches off the couch when I screamed, “Oh my gosh, BABY GOATS!”
Seriously, guys, that’s the moment that did me in. One scroll through countless pictures of these adorably dorky animals and I was hooked. I needed them. And not in 5-10 or Heaven forbid, 20 years, but now. Yesterday. Tomorrow. Now.
Luckily, Jason and I have somehow been living on the same alternate universe since this all began, and he understood me!
We talked. We dreamed. And then, we planned. And planned.
I know people think I’m lying when I tell them it was just that simple. That one day my wonderful husband and I both looked at each other and realized our dream. And it just so happened that our dream was the same. We will become organic farmers with a passion for sustainability and a vision to share it all with our two energetic sons.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. If you are my friend from college or high school, it’s, “Didn’t you used to party every night? Weren’t you a corporate ladder climber with a business degree?” If you’re my family (who’s not already in the loop yet), you’re thinking, “Didn’t she just open a daycare last year?” And, “But she’s terrified of worms and mice and anything gross!”
My answer to you is: but have you been around me for the past two years? Jason started our gardens before we had finished moving our first load of furniture into our home. I was pissed. However, through that my husband has introduced, and fostered in me, a love of gardening I was never privileged to have. It started slow, hell worms still freak me out and initially I thought pulling weeds was truly intended for torture. But without warning, our gardens eclipsed my soul.
Every morning I wake up and cannot wait to get out there and see the beauty of nature. My brain still cannot fathom how this beautiful yellow flower can turn into a cucumber in a matter of days. I can literally sit there and watch it happen!
I have become obsessed with weeding. No, it’s true. As I was telling my grandmother on the phone the other day, “Weeding and being a perfectionist doesn’t always work – I will sit out there until I get every last one!”
And, yet, the creak in my back has never made me feel so alive.
In every extra minute I have (which truly is when the kiddos go to sleep), I am binging on farming information. I’ve bought books. I’ve watched documentaries. I have my ever – faithful Pinterest by my side. And I can’t get enough!
The same goes for Jason.
Everyday conversations in this house now ooze with words like compost, and water rights, and sustainable farming. The other day, I found myself starting a conversation by saying, “Did you know that llamas produce cold manure and you can use it right away?”
So, this is our idea. And our plan. And our journey. And I am going to tell you every bit of it. Over this next year or so, we are going to dive into all that homesteading/hobby farming has to offer, and I will take you on that journey. Every accomplishment (like making pickles – I did that today!), and every misstep and mistake we grow from along the way.
Because we are doing this for our own family. But if I can inspire you along the way, I’ve done something truly great and humbling.