The Little Things That Bring Joy

The last couple weeks, to be honest, the projects have been on hold because Mark has been working construction full time.  When he arrives home in the evenings there just is not enough time to really dig into all the many unfinished projects around the homestead.

It is just the way life is sometimes.  It is kind of like camping my husband says.  He loves to smile and remind me of how much I wanted to be like the pioneers every time I struggle to find things in the kitchen that is graced with old shelves from the barn.  Sometimes all I see is a mess, but I am glad that my husband reminds me that we are rugged pioneers.  Somehow, it always makes me refocus, which is a good thing.

We women can get distracted very easily by the little things.  Things that just do not matter in eternity—things that are in process.  I think it is our fast paced society that dictates it.  Generally, what it is, is lack of patience.  Sometimes all you have is a little time.  I just heard of a little girl named Gigi that only has a little time because she is dying of cancer.  She is only 8 years old.  When you hear things like that, you put life into perspective.  You become thankful for the little things.  As I read things about this little girl, who is so brave, so thankful for everything, I find myself encouraged so much by her example.  Please pray for Gigi and for her family! (

Speaking of enjoying the little things in life, I have been so blessed this week…

I’m not sure if you remember, but when we first bought this homestead, my husband salvaged the top off a rusty old cook stove.  He envisioned a greater purpose for it.  He put it above our old, Amish, pilot propane stove that I LOVE!  I love how when you open the door, it sounds like you are cocking a shotgun.  That noise will make a person smile every time!

The boys were helping hold it in place…

Mark screwed it right to the wooden wall behind the stove.
He even added a couple other screws to hang our cast iron pans from.  I am smitten.  This stove is about the neatest stove I have ever seen in my lifetime!  It is the little things that just make life more fun.  I can put my pot holders in the little warmer doors and some spices can be stored in there for quick access.  This thrills my heart.
Here is the side view.  Cooking just took on a new level of pioneer fun for us!
The garden has been flourishing.  Miles just came in with a handful of fresh picked radishes.  Wow, they were ever so good.  Little things like fresh eggs, milk, fresh made cheese, and produce that feeds our family is part of why we want to open a camp one day.  It is those little things that others would so enjoy learning and experiencing.

The cabinet maker had to move away shortly after I sent out the last update on the homestead.  The cabinets still sit in the shop.  Mark and I plan to finish them up together, when time allows.  It will be a process and it could be interesting, since neither one of us ever made cabinets.  I love that life is spontaneous.  When one door closes you feel the breeze of new beginnings blowing in through the crack of window!  Hey, we will learn something and it may be something we will be really good at and enjoy!  There is always a purpose to everything, I am learning.

Before the cabinet maker headed out of town with his trailer loaded down with their household items, he came over with the bass fiddle to store at our home.  I was beyond excited since that was my instrument in high school and college.  I love to plunk around on there and even softly bow the instrument to add some depth to the piano music being played.

That is what the girls and I do if we have extra time.  We play these instruments together.  None of us are reading sheet music, we just play by ear and from our heart.  That is the best music of all!  It is the little things, like making music together on warm afternoons, that make life rich for simple folk such as ourselves.

It has been very hot and humid these past few weeks, so one day I drove to a neighbor and asked him to dig us a swimming hole.  That is what folks do in these parts.  When you have a creek running through, and if it is a shallow one, you just dig a big hole in it and have yourself a swimming hole.
However, the back hoe sprung a leak and the project had to be postponed.  As with many things on the new homestead, it is all about patience and enjoying the process.

I keep dreaming into the future, families splashing in the creek, memories being made here at the homestead camp.  The future homestead camp.  The old rope that old Tom Slayman bought is still in its rightful place.  The boys were having so much fun watching the excavation while it lasted.  They swung high on that old black rope.

One of Tom’s boys told us that the rope was very special to their family.  When they were living in those little cabins, they had little to no money.  Living off the land was all they knew.  He told me that his daddy once had $40 to his name.  He went out and bought that sturdy black rope with his $40.  It was all he had of any value but he bought it so that his children could swing from the trees into that same creek.

The rope is still sturdy after 25 years of hanging off the same limb.  That is amazing.  It is neat to see a little thing like a $40 rope that brings joy over decades of time.  I imagine that rope will still be there, kids will still be swinging on it for many years to come.

Stop and take time to enjoy the little things.  Be thankful in all things.

0 thoughts on “The Little Things That Bring Joy

  1. O I am so excited for you guys. Yes, passions that is make one of the biggest lessons of our time. But it seams as if God has enough time to teach us that.
    My mother always use to say, you don’t need to be rich to be clean. All you bring together is so beautiful, because you are creating out of what you have and that is so fulfilling. Just the other day my son and I took an old straw rag and glued it to one of there homeschooling boxes for a storage container and it looks so professional and real, well at least for us. Sometimes it is so easy and tempting to go out there and just buy what you need that you forget of what you have and what you can do with it.
    I also took and old glass pot and made it into a fork and knife holder since my very tiny small kitchen don’t have drawers.
    God bless you Erin. And I know we can get discouraged, but you are a beautiful encouragement.
    God bless you and your lovely family. Keep up the good work.

  2. Many blessings come from being humble -I myself find myself not always having money to do this or that and so we find simple ways to have fun here!

  3. That is really cute over your “Amish” stove! I like how old it makes the stove look and is very useful and country looking. Good job. I had to laugh at the picture of your husband and boys installing the top. Is the stove “small” or is your husband a giant! ;O) (I’m on the short side myself)
    Everything is looking great. I am very drawn to the rustic feel of everything.

  4. hello Erin xx. Love the stove it looks great as does everything so far that you all have done. It’s hard when you have so much to do and you know you are all tired. Plenty of time , just live your dream day by day , take lots of photos and then you can look back and say WOW look how much we have done. You are all going great xxoo

  5. Thank you Erin for all your hard work. I’m a Christian woman dealing with many stresses in life and it brings me great joy and comfort to read your stories. God bless you and your wonderful family.

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