Guest posting

Just wanted to pop in briefly to let you know that I’m guest posting on my friend Dani’s blog The Adventure Bite today. I am sharing a bit of background about our “big move” from Oregon to Missouri, and how it challenged us to leave a safe and comfortable life behind and leap into the unknown.  I really enjoyed reflecting back on that period of discernment, and articulating the process behind our decision.

If you haven’t already checked out Dani’s blog, be sure to jump on over there and look around.  In addition to writing about backyard farming and hosting the popular From the Farm Blog Hop, Dani shares a number of tasty and beautiful recipes, such as her Sweet Mascarpone Peach Tart (which was included in my Peach Recipe round up), and a German Pancake Pizza (yum!!).

My post can be found here.

Have a wonderful day,
Teri

Embracing the Unknown

In our grand division of homestead labor, goat care has fallen squarely on the shoulders of my husband in the past year or two.  I still spend time with the goats, and really look forward to the day when I can resume my share of their care, but for now I’m focusing my energy on other homestead chores.  So it took me by surprise to help put the goats away last night and look over to see Sable’s stall empty.   Even though we had all gone as a family to bring Sable to her new home (a lovely homestead where two of her half-sisters already live), somehow the sight of the empty stall was so viscerally real and final.

These weeks are full of goodbyes – teary goodbyes to friends that we won’t see again, transporting goats to new homes, bringing our cat to live with a friend (who was the cat’s original owner 10 years ago), packing items in boxes knowing that we won’t open them for months or years, and tossing books and clothes that we don’t want to move across country.   Saying goodbye to the comfortable and familiar, to the routine and habitual, to this beautiful and wonderful land and home.

Entering into the space of possibility, potential and the discomfort of the unknown is downright scary!  I have been having a really hard time with this transition, imagining all sorts of 11th hour strategies to remain here in our little home.  Yet although my heart really truly wants to stay, my gut somehow knows this is not the answer.

To arrive at the decision to move to Missouri (a two year-long, fairly agonizing process), our family has visited the MO land three times.  We have had countless conversations with friends, consulted the I-Ching, met twice with a tarot reader, and made endless lists and flow charts (yes – flowcharts!!).  Ultimately, the decision has rested on a vision of what we want to create in our lives.  Some of the guiding principles include:

  •  We want to lovingly and mindfully create a homestead that will nurture our family with food, shelter, and beauty.
  • In order to fully invest in our homestead, we choose to be HOME, and not working full-time at off-site jobs.
  • We purchased a piece of land outright, so we have no debt, and we will build small, beautiful, and functional living spaces as funds become available.
  • We wish to be surrounded by a community that shares our values and will support us in our vision.
  • We want to live within walking distance of other families and friends with whom we can share the joys and challenges of raising children.

What has been so difficult in this process is that we already have so many of these gifts here in Oregon.  We are blessed with wonderful friends and neighbors in a truly beautiful community.

I don’t know if we’re making the right decision.  The only way we’ll truly know is to go to Missouri and give it a try.  What I do know is that we are going to get the opportunity to challenge ourselves in ways that I never imagined.  As my sweet friend told me the other day, “the journey is the prize.”

So friends, I am going to sign off this blog for the next two or three weeks while I concentrate on packing, moving, and settling into our new (temporary) home.  I will continue to post updates on my Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/HomesteadHoneyWebsite?ref=hl and I anticipate returning to this space in mid-October.

Thank you for joining me on this journey, and I look forward to connecting in the near future!

Teri

September Snapshots

More than any other September in memory, this month is lasting an eternity.  Each day has been long and full, stretching beyond my usual perception of a day.  And this has been a very good thing because we are moving in two weeks. Moving across country, to a new life on a new piece of land.  And while this move holds excitement and potential, particularly because the new piece of land is ours, I also feel deep grief at leaving this rented piece of land that we’ve called home for 13 years.  The home where I learned to garden, raised animals, got married, got a Master’s degree, had two babies born in this house.

And so I feel the urge to hold on tightly to every single one of these long moments. To burn them in my memory as a record of our last summer in this magical creek-side house.

Our garden, luscious and unruly.

Huge, prolific squash, and a wool-bottomed baby.

Making roasted tomatillo salsa, with a recipe from Coyote Cafe.

Searching for tadpoles in the lake.

Frightening forest creatures at my doorstep!

Seeking the warmth of the greenhouse in the crisp mornings.

Enjoying our sweet goats.

Digging for sandy treasure.

Sharing an equinox campfire and some s’mores with good friends was the perfect way to say goodbye to summer and hello to an autumn of new adventures.