I should have known when we decided to move here, it would mean that this year would be hard. For me, most of my growth has been to accept slowing down, yet maintaining peace when things are busy. And also to have patience when projects take more time than I want them to. Those are some things I probably would have gone through no matter where we were. And they will probably be lifelong things anyway.
For my husband, he’s had to be even more of a leader since we have taken on more projects. He’s also had to learn to be handy. All while working more than full-time, as in 12 hour days, 7 days a week, and sometimes traveling on the weekends. All of this has been an adjustment for sure, involving some growing pains here and there.
So, what projects might you ask?
- Wood stove. We have a wood stove, which is amazing, but it takes lots and lots of wood, of course! So my husband has had to add wood collecting and cutting to his list of things to do. But he got to buy a chainsaw and ax out of it, which I think he’s pretty happy about. Still working on finding a truck! We don’t need wood now since it’s warm, but he’s still making it a weekly habit of collecting so we’ll be well stocked come winter.
- Maple syrup. We teamed up with my parents to tap some maple trees on their property. It was our job to empty the sap into buckets. My dad would simmer it in a huge pot on a hot plate outside for a long time. When it was getting close, he’d bring it inside, we’d split it, and then we each boiled it down all the way to syrup. Ahh, I loved the smell of it boiling down. And you know what? We got over a gallon of maple syrup! It won’t last us all year, but it’ll get us through most of it.
- Chickens. At first we were taking turns feeding the chickens at my parents’. One weekend my dad and my husband moved an old coop to our place. Fencing was on the way. As the weather got nicer, more chickens escaped their home at my parents’. My mom asked if we could move them early and just keep them in the coop until the fence came. April 2nd, they moved in! It was work initially for my husband, getting everything set up, but now I do most of the care, egg collecting, and storing. My parents pretty much gave us a small business. We’re selling eggs to friends and church members. My main hope is to break even (and have eggs for us, which is a profit in its own way), but if we make a little extra, that would be helpful. So, yeah, we have chickens!! Didn’t think that would happen for another year or two, but it practically happened overnight!
- Garden. My husband has done all the planning for the garden, outside of my ideas for what to plant. I know this was work for him because he’s never gardened. Our yard is thick with years of grass that had not been mowed. He worked a few mornings shoveling out a border around the area we choose. God blessed him with neighbor driving by on a Bobcat. My husband promptly flagged him down and asked him what he could pay him to plow that plot. Fifty bucks and it was done. It was well worth it! It has taken trials to get the lot tilled, but it is finally tilled (thanks to a friend and my father) and we have some spring things planted!
It’s been really neat to see this land come alive in the spring. Who knew we had flowering trees in the front? I think we’ll have irises and maybe another bulb flower. There is a rose bush trying to revive. And this lovely plant below.
There have been many ups and downs with this move. There still are. But the vision is coming together. Our hard work is paying off. This is the exciting time. This is what all of our day dreaming and planning has been for. It’s such a blessing to see a little fruit from our efforts. I pray God continues to guide and bless us along this new journey of ours.