Dear Friends from Near and Far,
I have sure missed all of you. It really does feel like a lifetime since I last reached out to all of you. You have been busy, I am sure! My husband will look this post over and I am sure he will ask, “What are you doing? Writing a book?!?” In jest of course! The words just come to me and it is like a river overflowing. If you like to read, have a seat, pour a cup of tea, and catch up with me today! I promise to be shorter in the future!
When I get on this computer, I have this feeling of overwhelming love for those of you that have stumbled across my path on this internet realm. I remember when I was about 18 years old, sitting there in a hard plastic chair with all my classmates from Little Chute High School. My tiny class of 99! The teachers were attempting to prepare us for our life outside those brick walls that kept us corralled for all of 12 years. On the black board, the teacher started to draw a web. It was not a spider web. He told us that one day we will be able to communicate with this HUGE invisible web. We could instantly chat with a person all the way across the world.
It seemed like a fairytale to me at the time.
The internet was just unleashed for the first time and to think that I would be writing a blog that reached all the way around the world would have blown my mind.
I value those people that God has brought to my blog— all of you that read my writings and you find some element of encouragement through it. It certainly is humbling. I feel I am no-one special. I have had a lot of adventures in these 41 years of life. I have fell on my face a fair share, lived to tell the tale, and chose to learn from each moment. God is faithful to show mercy and grace every time. I sure do not feel like I am anyone to talk or that anyone would care to listen to those broken stories of a life lived for Jesus. Each day is a gift that I could never earn.
I started this blog four years ago almost to the date. I did not have any expectations except that I would share my testimony. Sharing the ways God has pulled me out of pits of despair, defeat, and shame. How He has given me His name and a purpose to proclaim the victories and unexplainable joy anyone can have by following Him. I am only beginning to grasp all the treasures God has for me and to all those that follow Him. We are all on this journey. Everyone has a story to tell. You may not see it now, but I pray that I can help draw it out. Maybe God will use me as an instrument to show you that anything is possible. That anyone can find joy even in adversity, no matter where He has you, because God has the power to transform us. Your story is important to God. It is the essence of the cross—true redemption.
I have often wished for the internet to stop. I think about the bad things that it has caused. I see children fixated to screens. The blue glow dancing in their eyes. I wonder why we have all become so dependent to this WEB. It has us. We are definitely stuck there. The internet has become a very important part of society and to not accept it would surely plunge us into the dark ages. The years I dedicated to living off the land and being this Keeper of the Homestead will come in handy. Until then, I aim to keep teaching others these lost skills for that just in case moment. The funny thing is that God showed me a great need for the internet these past months. You do not know what you have until it is gone. That is in old but very relevant saying!
Things don’t always go as planned. I have to start with this remark because…MY BLOG!!! Where did it go????? I was totally planning to start this grand blogging adventure at the start of February. Little did I know that I would come down with a horrid illness at the end of January all the while we were closing on our new home and trying to move our entire homestead to the other side of the county which was a bit of a dead zone for the internet, come to find out! Sometimes we get what we ask for! What’s funny is that this same person who was praying for the internet to go away was now praying for the internet to return. So many of you know my character. You know I keep my word. Integrity is so important to me. So with that being said, I apologize for not delivering on my promise. It was clearly out of my hands. Good news is that I now have a mobile hot spot. It is not much, but it will suffice to get a good start on here. I may have to wait on posting all my fun tutorial videos, but hopefully soon we shall have some sort of satellite that can upload them.
I have so much to tell—so much to say! Where do I begin?
How about where we left off? Sure thing, my friends!
This marks the beginning of a new chapter of our life. We had spent the past year and a half looking for a place to buy that would both be in our price range and would suit the needs of our homestead, and family. After finding the fellowship of our absolute dreams, we knew we needed to move closer to the community. The funny thing is that Mark originally did not want to move this close, but he ended up finding that being a neighbor was the best thing for all of us, even our neighbors. What I mean to say is, we were literally meant to be here. A million signs point to this exact spot. It is one of those miraculous stories. Imagine a thousand doors closing all to open the right one. All the tears, the frustration, and disappointment was not in vain. It was providence.
We found this house the end of December. The first time I looked at it, I thought that it was the most ridiculous little place. So not my style of a house. A brick ranch? I was envisioning a log cabin, or a farm house. Homesteaders in a brick ranch?—weird. The good part is that it was only a couple miles from the community we love, literally a hop, skip, and a jump! That is a plus. When you are looking for property, you have to look at all the pros and cons of course. It was half the price of any other homesteads we were looking at. Our payment would be less than the rent. That is a definite plus! One drawback was that there is only 2.5 acres!!! What kind of farming or gardening can a family do on a small spot as this?
Well, lets let God get creative, right?
We went to see the place and I immediately said, “This is the place!” Pictures do not describe the setting. The setting here is breathtaking. I have never in my life seen such glorious views. We are right beside hundreds of acres of trees, rolling hills, ponds, creeks, pasture land, an eagles nest, a whole zoo of animals to see out your front window. It is actually incredible! We moved on February the first, and of course, we had it all mapped out—so we thought. Well, then we got terribly sick two weeks prior to closing on the home. I had hoards to go through and get rid of in the basement at the rental house. I couldn’t mess with that. I couldn’t pack. I couldn’t write. I was pretty much flat out. I did manage to gain my strength the day we moved. Perhaps it was due to the fact that I was really excited. I walked through the door of our new abode and just fell on my face with thanksgiving. It had been years since I was allowed the feeling of—HOME. This is my home. It is lovely. It is the PERFECT PLACE for us.
Would you like to hear something crazy amazing? The lady across the street, Miss Shirley offered to let us put our milk cow and sheep on her pasture with her animals until we could make a pasture area around us. Now I can see my sweet cow right out my front window each morning as I make breakfast! So lovely. The guy who owns 100 acres around our home also offered to work with us on perhaps using a bit of his land for pasture as long as we keep it up, which is just what we know how to do. It is a miracle. We are so thankful. God has been so good to us. Wow!
Now for the tour…
Here is our lovely front porch with the most amazing view of the pond and rolling hills.
Here is our cow and her new boyfriend, Bullseye. He and her might be expecting a calf nine months from now! We hope! Marilla Moo is dry right now which means, she is not giving milk. It gives all of us a little break until we have the homestead all set up for the new calf.
Here is our lovely 1960s style kitchen. I just love the bright white cabinets and for the first time I have a dishwasher. I never knew I would like to have a dishwasher this much. Especially on canning days, I can sterilize a large quantity of jars at one time.
Having a cook top is fun. I have never had one. The stove in the cabinets seems easier to get things in and out for a little cook like myself.
The dining room is quite nice. I was able to display all of my grandmother’s china.
The view is the best part of all. You can sit at this table and see the rolling hills and the animals…
There are three bedrooms right now. Mark plans to knock out walls, combine the formal living room with one of the bedrooms to make one master bedroom, which we will video and explain as we go. The basement is full and it will be transformed into two bedrooms, a place for the guys to workout, and all our canning storage. Here is the main bathroom with the vintage blue green tile. I just love it.
We will use all our building supplies from our old Barn House to construct. We love using what we have to be as resourceful as we can in every situation. Here is one of the bedrooms. They are small but very nice.
This den makes a perfect sitting room for our family.
We can have music and prayer, special movie nights, and fellowship with others. Soon Mark will knock out the wall and double the size. On the other side of this wall sits a former garage. It is just a case of raising the floor and we will have a great room for all to enjoy!
It is truly amazing what we can do with this little brick home! It sure is the Perfect Place!
I hope you have enjoyed the read and the tour of the new place! I am excited to keep things current and reach out to you more regularly, my friends. Have a blessed day!
In the Unfailing Mercies of Jesus,
The Keeper of the Homestead