This is a post I wrote on December 14, 2010, with a few minor changes. I wanted to share it again for those of you new to this blog. I'm planning to write out my 2012 goals and will write a post detailing them.
One of my favorite things to do when I have a quiet moment is to dream of what I really want in life, what I should be doing that is meaningful, not just for me, but for my family, my friends and the community where I live. This is new to me in recent years, I haven't always been in a position to even be able to think about what I wanted to do. My thoughts have primarily focused on raising my children and creating memories with them, cooking, cleaning, organizing, and tending to everyones needs have been a huge job over the last 20 years! In the midst of raising children I also worked for 12 years as a realtor and had to be disciplined to make money. Personal ambitions since I have been an adult have been very limited, if you're a mother with young children you will understand.
Four years ago, I really began to ask the question in my quiet hours, what am I here to do on this earth (besides raising children)? What do you want me to do... my creator? I would ask Him who knew me before I was born, and created me, gave me my family, my Mom and Dad, my twin sister, and my brothers, and gave me the gift of 5 beautiful children, and my husband, whom I adore.
Writing it out.. this is what I heard when I asked 4 years ago what it is I'm put here on earth to do? My answer was simple and clear, but also included some of my childhood dreams of painting and animals. You are called to teach others about what you're learning about self sufficient living through writing and photographing your journey. Get prepared to be out of debt, create your own food and power, work from home as much as possible, and teach all that you are learning, and have learned over the years. The cashflow is to come through having a small fruit tree and edible nursery, and Jarin's new business building cabins and bungalows.
5 years ago I started gardening more intensely, and studying like a student in school, getting as many books as I could. 4 years ago, I studied beekeeping, and got 2 honeybee hives, plus that was the year I bought fruit trees, put in an orchard and learned all I could about pruning and tending to my new orchard and hives. Jarin deer fenced the large vegetable garden, so we could really begin to produce our own food, and it has grown by one large bed every year.
The next year I got rabbits, and more fruit trees, and Jarin continued to build fencing to enclose the whole ten acres in deer proof fencing. We want to plant the land in fruit trees and edibles, without having them destroyed by the deer. The next year we got chickens, and began to build the coop and the chicken run to make it predator proof... this was a huge job!
We are learning as a family where our food comes from, how much work it is to create rich soil to grow your own food. How to create fencing that lasts and keeps deer out of the vegetables and fruit trees. We have learned to greatly value the chickens, rabbits, and honeybees for their contribution to the farm's permaculture plan.
In the next few years we hope to get off grid totally with the help of a windmill and solar power. These are dreams that will become a reality I know. Further down the road, I hope to hold self sufficiency classes and retreats here at Applegarth Farm.