Tuesday, June 24, 2014

One Month: Our Farm Adventure has really begun

It’s been one whole month since we moved here. I’m having trouble wrapping my mind around it still.
In some respects, it’s like we’ve been here forever and in others it’s still so new and unreal.
Making my childhood home, my parent’s house, into mine has been a balancing act.

Things seem slower here…. I don’t know if that’s because of the whirlwind weeks of packing and painting before the move, the fact that school is finished, that this is real country living or if it’s just still my ideal idea of what countrified living should be. Or perhaps still, it’s a mish-mash of all of the above.
Either way the wind blows on that- I am most content and enjoying a slower pace. The Mister and I often find ourselves working side by side then stopping and looking over all this beautiful land and we just can't believe how amazingly and abundantly God has answered our prayers for this home.

Frontview/ North side of Farmhouse. The main portion is a traditional four-square built sometime between 1876-1892.
By the time we made the move I was weary and worn down. My heart hurt for what I was leaving and all the boxes upon boxes of family life that still doesn’t have a place in this home and is still regaled to the barn. Yes, I was quite sad to leave the yellow house behind but I have found that I don’t really miss it. It has already become a memory in my mind, a part of my past. The family that owns it now cut down my Granny Smith Apple tree last week. The tree my very own Granny & Grandpa Smith (although I called her Gramma) gave to me in honor of my college graduation 20 years ago. Yes, that makes me sad. The tree was leaning just about sideways and we figured that since it had no sentimental value to the new owners that this would be the case. it gave us the biggest ever bumper crop of apples last fall. It’s one of the things I wish we could have taken with us when we moved. [That and Lu's Lilac we planted the spring after she was born.]

In my pantry are all that is left of that tree. Six jars of homemade applesauce made from those apples and from the apple tree at my mother-in-law’s home. I kinda don’t want to eat it and then again, I do. I want to set the table for a pretty celebration and celebrate the eating of those final jars of applesauce. Crazy, eh?

Front looking east. This small building was once a gas station. My parents turned it into a screened in porch after a tree fell & destroyed part of it. We are now re-configuring it into a little Mom & Pop apartment for my parents. My great grandfather ran this little gas station for 3.5 years, 1946-50, until the new highway was built a half mile north. He sold Gargoyle gas.
Standing in front yard looking Southwest at side yard and west field. Here you can see the swing set, part of the wood pile, the potting shed and part of the gardens.
West side of yard looking south. You can see the top of the barn and a portion of the south field.
West view of Farmhouse. The Mister and my Pop are putting in steps for me at the sliding glass door to the kitchen. The kitchen, pantry, bathroom and back porch were added in the 1920's.
We’re embracing this countrified farm life and all its freshness. Soon the newness will wear off, but who cares? I’m all about these moments- right here, right now and the capturing of them in my mind’s eye. Lets leave the future let downs to the future and enjoy this big, wide open, beautiful present. Like the big moon that hung low over the field last weekend. The thunderstorm that rolled across the horizon with the most amazing blazes of lightning last night. The steamy, sultry quality of the budding garden this morning…. The cackles of the chickens as they call to my son in the morning to come let them out of the coop. Loud family dinners served on the big dining table with places for all seven of us now that we’ve added my parents to the mix. Digging in the garden and planting new flowers. My kiddos wearing muck boots and grinning ear to ear as they do chores. The quiet night sounds that feel so over the top and special compared to the harsher sounds we were use to in town. How dark it gets at night without street lamps…. Can I just say how much I love these beautiful dark nights?!

Closer look at coop (and chicken tractor), potting shed, gardens and west field (which is just grass right now- contemplating getting some cows and putting them out to pasture there).
The old barn. When my parents moved here 33 years ago there were 8 outbuildings. Some weren't in very good shape. Now we have the station and the old barn. We hope to add a new barn next to this one- where the old large chicken coop use to sit. We like the idea of keeping the same footprint as it once was.
South view of Farmhouse. To the right is the kids playhouse made from materials we salvaged from tearing down dilapidated outbuildings.
We feel more at peace here. All five of us. Myself included. This is the fit for our family, of that I have no doubt. I love watching my husband work on the farm and begin to put into motion his vision for this place. I love the relaxed, contented look of him as he works out here. We don’t feel rushed or hurried, and yet we work harder than we did in town. Farming, even our wee little farm, takes muscles and sweat and real labor.
My head rests easier on my pillow at night. I still don’t have everything unpacked, in fact, we still don’t know how we’re going to fit everything in this space but I know we’ll find a way to make it work, make it do or soon find we really didn’t need it to begin with.

I still haven’t quite found my rhythm here…. My routine. But I don’t feel out of sorts about it either. Maybe I’m still recuperating from the big move or maybe I’m learning to embrace a slower way of life and accepting that the routine will develop in time. Since I’m not panicky about it, I tend to think it’s more the latter…. Which is another testament to God’s hand in all of this. At least once a day I find myself looking over this place, this home and it’s land and thanking Him profusely for his abundant and blessed provisions.


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