Go Big or Go Home?

I know it’s been a while. I’m sorry I haven’t posted in so long but I’ve been a tad bit overwhelmed.

Back in June we looked into purchasing a working farm of 40 acres or so. I drooled over all the pictures of the barn and other outbuildings, the green, fenced pastureland, the huge garden.

We have been trying to have our little operation make sense somehow. We finally got some wool made into yarn and while it was gorgeous, we just don’t have enough sheep to really produce a decent amount of product. So, we seriously considered buying that farm and trying to get into sheep farming. When we realized it wasn’t going to work out we just came to a point of re-evaluating everything we have going on here.

I was very ‘gung ho’ in the beginning of starting this little farm. All I wanted to do was grow more food. It’s not that I haven’t blissfully enjoyed almost all of it, but reality has hit.

First, you need grass. I certainly underestimated this. Yes, you can buy hay but I like to be practical. Our property is only a couple acres and the chickens, ducks and geese pretty much eat it all. We have been fortunate in that we’ve been able to use pasture at our neighbors. We use a portable fence and move it around every couple days or so.  The negative side is that my children and I are leading each animal across a road morning and night to get them fed. Frankly, I’m sick of it. I hate crossing that road.

You need money. Growing your own food is so much more expensive that I ever would have guessed. While we’ve been thrilled with the quality of food we’ve been eating, it has come at a high price.  That aspect has been quite discouraging. Have you ever done any sewing or building and you find out after that you could have bought it for less than it cost to make?

Also, you need time. We’ve been neglecting making much improvements on our home. We haven’t had the time or money.  We are not the kind of people who can stomach a big mortgage and so we like to improve as we go and do it ourselves. The house and property we have needs a lot of work.

You also need a lot of energy and ambition. I am not as ambitious of a person as I thought I was. I like to take my time and do things right. I don’t like being distracted. I also really don’t like when things pile up and I can’t find time to clear them off my list. I’ve been doing too many things to do anything really well.

I’ve been trying to clear up my priorities. Sometimes I find it really hard just to make it through the day. I need more headspace to focus on communicating to my children and husband that they are worthy of love. I need to get my budgeting back on track. I need to learn some time management so I don’t always feel that I’m in a rush. And I need time to relax!

I feel like someone who just woke up out of a fog and is looking around at all the projects and work I created and I am wondering who was this crazy person that started all this?

Things have come to a head. When stuff isn’t making sense anymore you look around and see what kind of changes you can make.  So, we’ve decided to sell off most of the livestock. We will keep a few until butcher time in the fall and we’ll keep our poultry (and of course our dogs).

Maybe in the future we’ll do some more “farming” but for now I am looking forward to taking a break.

PS I’m having a hard time posting this with no pictures at all so here’s a picture of some of the yarn we had made:


Nidi yarn

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1 Response to Go Big or Go Home?

  1. Chris M says:

    Venessa, I don’t mind sharing with the world that I am one of your great admirers, I love you and all that you do, have done & accomplished. I am so glad you are our neighbor ( the whole family). I also understand every word that you are saying. Glad you had time to be away, re-evaluate, and move forward. By the way, being bigger may be efficient, but increases work no matter what. You are living a good life that you are adjusting and still enjoy your family , eating your own bounty, breathing good air, drinking good water and making possible honest work with your hands. You all have much of which to be proud and you have great days ahead, no matter what. Love you, Red Cabin Farm!

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