I was raised and lived my whole life in the suburbs of various cities up until 8 years ago. A burden had been placed on my heart to begin praying for more land and at first I thought the entire idea was crazy. I was obedient however, to that burden He laid on my heart and began to pray...
That prayer, that ability to stand on those edges and to jump, trusting Him, led me up here to the mountains where I found more land, a home, and over time a slew of animals.
I have always referred to these past few years as being enrolled in an 'unconventional' college course because I knew absolutely nothing about farming or rural life. I never dreamed I would ever live this lifestyle, and to be quite frank, I had no desire to.
He knew though. He knew that deep in my heart there was an untouched area...an area He wanted to fill with a depth, an understanding, a simplicity I had never known. From the moment I closed on the house and drove to my new farm, I felt home. It sure doesn't make sense to me, but sometimes there are things that are unexplainable. I remember back to those early days...how I marveled at the balance I could intuitively see that I had never experienced before. I still had all the normal pressures and responsibilities in life, but I was now living in an environment that was filled with peace and beauty, and I couldn't help but notice that the balance between those two strengthened me.
Within 30 days of moving here, as I spent several days mowing large portions of grassy areas, I'll never forget the epiphany I had...
There are times when it's human nature to run or resist God's plan for our lives. For me, it stemmed out of fear and a desire to maintain some control over my life. When He laid it on my heart to pray for more land, I thought the whole idea was nuts. On that particular day mowing the grass however, I suddenly realized that all the years I had spent running had denied me the fullness of the blessing of being in the center of His will for my life. I realized that while I 'thought' I would have never wanted to live this lifestyle, He knew different. He knew me better than I knew myself, and I know myself pretty well. Something I never thought I'd ever want to do, ended up being the exact thing that filled my heart and soul unlike anything I had experienced before (outside of my children and family).
His will for my life is truly where I'm the most happiest...where I'm at peace.
I still, and will always, remember vividly my suburbian/city days...they will always be a huge part of me. I've learned however, to cherish things I've never known before. The simplicity of my days defy any complicated, rushed, deadline of years past.
People often comment on how they, or others, need to "stop and smell the roses". You've never truly smelled a rose though, until you've smelled it in a place like this. Each day I wake up, I am surrounded by sounds of life...the birds, the dogs, the sheep, the rooster, et al. Sounds of sirens are rare, if ever, vehicle traffic is only found out on the main highway. "Rush hour" around here, consists of 7 cars at a stoplight and people slow down so that you can change lanes or pull your car out on the road.
When we first moved here, one of my sons was concerned he was doing something wrong as he drove around the town. It took him a little while until he figured it out...as he drove past other cars, people would wave to say "hi". I know it took me a little while to get used to such outward friendliness to strangers like me. I wasn't used to going to the grocery store and stopping at the deli to pick up some lunchmeat, and have the employee start a conversation sharing about the wedding they were having to cater, or how their mama was doing, etc. These types of things felt very strange to me in the beginning but slowly over time, I began to change.
There's an allure in simplicity. Once drawn in, one begins to see a wealth never discovered before. I cherish the things I've learned these past 4 years. They've impacted my life in a manner that has changed me forever. I value those changes and cling tightly to them.
Most of all, I've been afforded an opportunity to expand in areas that I love. First and foremost are my Kangal Dogs. They're my passion, they're the breed I was destined to be with and I love each and every one for who they are individually (they all have unique personalities) and it didn't take long before they were able to earn my respect. I have to work very hard at not going on and on and on about this breed...they fill my heart with so many things which is why I'm so happy to be able to write about each one of them on their pages in this website.
For quite some time before I ever 'went country', I had concerns and strong beliefs about the foods that the commercial companies mass produce for the public. While still in the suburbs I would do an enormous amount of canning...preserving homecooked foods without chemicals or additives. These days, I'm able to raise a large part of our groceries. We raise beef and pork, and no matter what anyone tells you, you don't have to use chemicals (nitrates/nitrites) to preserve smoked bacon. When's the last time you made a BLT sandwich with homemade bread from grains you ground yourself, tomatoes and lettuce fresh from the garden, homemade mayo and homemade bacon smoked over real hickory wood chips?
You've not had a real BLT till you've tried one of those. :)
These days we work harder than we ever have in our life, but there's a richness that fills the soul at the end of the day. Many times, I'm able to take the 'fruits of our labor' and share them with others...whether it be our beloved Kangal Dog, fresh eggs, raw honey, dairy products or meats. I laugh more than I ever have in my life and it's the type of laughter that is pure and genuine, stemming from deep inside...
I still think it's absolutely hysterical that a city girl like me could learn all that I have and go from that lifestyle to this. These days, especially since it's been so cold outside, I trudge around the farm in Muck boots and thermal overalls (I never thought I'd ever cross that boundry line and wear overalls lol). These days, a confidence fills the heart because I've come a long, long way.
He was right.
I really do love all I do.
Check our website out often...we have alot more to come!