Homestead Update: Settling into Our New Home on the Farm
Hello! It feels like a while since we have talked; or rather, you read and I wrote out all of my thoughts into this little internet space. Lately I have been feeling off. I am sure the big move that we just went through does not account for any of the lopsidedness... or maybe it accounts for all of it! The thing is, since we moved, I have been extremely happy with my day to day life. It has been my internet life and my work that has felt a little off, though I am not sure why. I think it may be this whole issue with not having much daylight anymore and photographing an entirely new space while feeling like I am near constantly in the dark. I am also just not having a great time posting to social media lately. I go through phases like that all of the time, and while I could just not post (which I have not been posting as much as I usually do for a few weeks now), I also want my business to thrive. Did you know that most of the people traveling over to read this blog are from Instagram?! We've created such an awesome community over there that I adore, but there are definitely days where I want to crawl into a hole and not answer questions or participate. Do you ever feel that way? This is not to complain, more I suppose just to explain where my mind is at present. I am learning to enjoy the seasons; maybe my issue is that I love winter, but I just don't love documenting it! See? We talked ourselves through that one.
Life in the big house has been absolutely pleasant. There are still things we are learning and discovering about our new home. If you missed our last post about the move, I shared mostly exterior photos and information about the farm itself. It will just be a small farm, something most would not even consider as a farm, but we are happy to take on the challenge of producing lots of food in a small space! As for the farmhouse itself, it was built in 1917. What a timeframe for it to celebrate its one hundred-year-old birthday this year! The original family to live in it were parents to four teenage children. In old photos, you can see two barns in the background, which we would love to recreate (probably only one!). With two barns, I assume that they owned more acreage at the time. Once the children grew up and moved away, the last living son owned the home and was taken away in ambulance one day never to return. He left the family dog to live here and a glass of milk on the table for seven years. It was the next owners, who we bought it from, who found the dog and the glass of milk plus whatever else was lying around here. That is just crazy!
We were able to discover, though, why the woodwork was so well preserved. There were not many young children who grew up in this house to scratch up the floors and dent the built ins! Well, strike one for us. Tad will be moving and grooving in this house for many years ahead. The entire home is filled with original woodwork, doors, trims, and built in cabinets in the kitchen. They're exquisite, and we will definitely not be painting any of them. While I love them in person, the wood is so red and makes everything around it warm-toned! I will be experimenting quite a bit with photographing the many, many oranges, yellows, and reds in this home.
I think the hardest part about being in this home, with its few flaws, is taking a step back on decorating. Jill and I both are consistently discussing what we would like to do: paint, hunt for antique furniture, hang up shaker pegs everywhere (okay, that one is just me!), new bedding and curtains and bed frames. My bedroom is currently aqua and mauve, so that will definitely change soon!! But we must pace ourselves; our new general store is more important! The itch to decorate must wait. Though, there is not much to be done anyway. We've found so many useful nooks in the home to store our things so that we may slowly begin settling in. Rather than decorate in general, which we are reminding ourselves to do over time so we can continue to not bring in useless junk, is to deck the halls for Christmas! This year, we decided to keep the decor all natural by using only things we can find out on the acreage or make with the crafting supplies we already own. It's actually been really beautiful and my favorite holiday decor we've done yet! The simplicity of creating natural ornaments, garlands, and wreaths has been just the touch we needed without feeling overbearing. Plus we are taking the entire month to decorate, which has been relaxing and much more enjoyable than piling everything into one day of the year. For our tree, we've strung a cranberry garland, dried orange slices, and tucked in some dried flowers, holly, and even a little abandoned bird's nest that was in a bush near the house.
Early next month, once Christmas and New Year's have passed, I am hoping to share what our estimated plan is for the upcoming year. We've had quite a few questions about when our online shop will reopen (in January!) and what to expect with our farm store. I am currently not anywhere close to specific Grand Opening dates, but we're wanting to try and shoot for April. The garden will be being planted, the general store hopefully suited up and ready to stock goodies, and our CSA beginning to fill up. Did you know that we're starting a CSA program? If you're local and would like to get a weekly share of farm fresh vegetables and pastured meats from our friends Wild Farm, then click here! I am super excited and nervous about it. The idea of selling farm goods, like fresh vegetables and eggs and honey and baked items is really terrifying. I have spent the past two years building up an online cliental but not for local consumers! It will be fun, I know it, and I hope to meet some readers in the future as well. My dream for this little farm is to have lots of fun events here, especially during u-pick season for aronia berries, apples, and pumpkins! We can have a special farm-to-table dinner for CSA members, maybe some gardening and livestock classes. There are a lot of dreams piling up in my journal.
That really goes for this online space, too! I would love to expand into teaching more online classes and things on homesteading, gardening, and living more simply. You know, all in a day's work! I am truly excited to get our Garden Start Up Course underway for this upcoming autumn. I was hoping to have it ready for spring of 2018, but the move set me back a bit. It will be completely free, which I think will be so fun! (: More people should have the ability to learn how to grow their own food! Again, I'll share more about our year's plans next month.
For now, we'll be baking Christmas cookies and listening to the classics on repeat. If you're looking for a good playlist with all of the old-fashioned Christmas songs, I have been using this one pretty much every day. I hope you are all having a wonderful holiday season and taking each day more slowly! It has been such a breath of fresh air to not feel like we should worry about how the house is decorated or who to shop for. We are gifting with care and with handmade items this year for our friends and family. Such a difference! We took a trip to the mall the other day to try finding some bedding, and I thought that I had really cracked. I hated it! We used to go to the mall or into the city all of the time, and I felt like I was suffering from claustrophobia. The country has changed me in so many ways! So we will be staying here and baking everyone cookies and making candles. Ha!
By the way, Tad's little outfits are from our friends and partner, Fin & Vince. They have some of nicest, quality made children's clothing ever. Definitely stop by their site and take a look! Tad wears basically only their clothing everyday, and they have lasted toy truck collisions, monster invasions, dirt pile climbing, egg collecting, and super villain fighting extremely well.