I was very touched by the supportive comments after my last post. Everyone seemed to understand why we made the decision to leave the farm. I said in my comments that it was a hard choice to make, and that was true. But hard choices are easy for me. The motion feels inexorable once I open my mind to the possibility. And once the decision is made I don't think twice about it.
Examples are limitless, but here's just one. Several years ago Jeremy and I tried to move to Portland, Oregon. I'm not sure why. I think there's a Waldorf training program there and it seemed like a hip and rainy enough place for two people who would have liked, at the time, to be hip and live in a rainy place. Plus I was so desperate to escape Utah I probably would have crawled on hands and knees to reach another state. Our efforts at moving could not have gone worse, and the decision was made very quickly that we'd give it up. I think my parents had whiplash from how fast our plans changed. But once we made that choice it was like we'd never conceived of living in Portland in the first place. I couldn't have explained why I wanted to live there.
For whatever reason, I embrace and discard plans and motions and ideas with equal fervor. I was so excited to move here to the farm and now I'm so excited to leave. I'm not sure how or why Jeremy puts up with my flighty, flaky nature. Nobody has any insights on my trajectory, least of all me.
But you gotta give me points for enthusiasm.
So. About this move.
We'll be renting a very small cabin: one room with a loft and two decks, that's it. Even smaller, probably, than the 275 square feet we're living in now. I am not concerned about this at all. I accept that small-scale living is not for everyone, but it seems to work well for our family. I genuinely adore Jeremy's company, and I love being with my kids, too, though it's essential that I can kick them outdoors when they start gnawing at my ankles.
We'll be situated on a 500-acre cattle ranch. There are 50 to 100 cattle on-site at any time, cared for by another land-renter, as well as five horses headed by a second caretaker, and the rest of the land is essentially a nature preserve, no hunting allowed.
We can bring our chickens and expand into other animals if we like. Jeremy wants to raise guinea hens and meat rabbits and I wouldn't mind a single milking cow, just for yogurt and butter, but we're going to take it slow.
Predation will be a serious concern on this land, so we adopted a dog. He's a Black Lab-German Shepherd mix, and his name is Tuna. That's right... Tuna. Don't ask. It all just happened so fast.
He's so sweet and mellow, I'm sure he'll have us trained in no time!
There's excellent hiking and camping on the ranch, natural ponds and streams, and these views that will simply knock your socks off...
...and plenty of wild food and medicine, of course.
My favorite feature of our immediate environment is this crazy old madrone tree right next to the house. The madrone looks strange enough as it is without being split down the middle, splayed open with its heart burned out. It's an amazing sight and one of which I'll never tire, I'm sure.
Isaiah was equally fascinated, dubbing her Mama Madrone and giving her a loving squeeze.
There's a fenced isolation corral a short walk from the house where I'll situate a small kitchen garden. The place runs on spring water so I can't go crazy with gardening at the house. But there's a very large garden spot at the stables, a bit more than a mile away, and the soil there is so perfect I could just cry.
No raised beds, huzzah! Horse shit is the shit, my friends.
We'll be moving in next Saturday. The house runs on solar energy and we won't have an Internet connection, so I won't be as responsive as I'd like to comments and updates on the Facebook page. But I'll still be comin' around, posting from coffee shops and the library, undoubtedly excited to share updates and images of our next adventure.