The first February on a farm should be renamed "The Dreaming Month".
Formerly known as "Cabin Fever Month" or the "Dear-God,-When-Will-This-Winter-End? Month", it is different this year. We're out in the barn and the pasture everyday, wandering around and dreaming big dreams in the icy snow.
Pete and I have been taxing the local library system with inter-library loan requests for every book we can find about sheep, permaculture, and beekeeping. Oh, and also root cellaring, pond building, barn repair, flower gardening (for Lupine), and horses (for the kids).
We are in the thick of the dreaming-and-planning-and-trying-to-not-get-in-over-our-heads phase.
And I do so like this phase.
We spent both Saturday and Sunday visiting friend's farms and meeting the sheep that might just come home with us in a couple of months. We met Corridales, Leicesters, Icelandic, Polypay, Merino-crosses, and probably a few I've forgotten.
We're narrowing down our choices and are trying to contain our enthusiasm and start small. But it's hard to not get carried away!
I suspect this will be a big season for our family.
There are so many new experiences coming to us and so very much to learn. To realize that you really have no idea what you are doing is humbling. And on everything we are embarking on we're so very green.
Fortunately we have friends who can hold our hands along the way. (Some are adults, and a few are kids – we know some homeschooled farm kids who have a lot to teach us about this life we're heading towards!) Indeed, we have mentors in our friend group for almost anything we're about to take on. And that's a huge comfort as we close our eyes and leap.
And that – along with the ridiculously enthusiastic seed order I just placed – reminds me that this quiet life is about to accelerate as we move towards spring. We're about to embrace some things we've been waiting to do for years.
It's like Pete said, "It's as if the life we've been waiting for has finally begun!"
Oh, yes. I think it has.
32 thoughts on “The Dreaming Month.”
This is so exciting for you guys!! No one needs sheep like you need sheep what with all of your knitting. Great times ahead!
What a wonderful feeling. 🙂 We felt the same way when we moved into our new house this past fall. Enjoy every minute!
This sounds so much like Amanda Soule’s posts when she first moved to their farm…books, enthusiasm, sheep, etc. Dreams coming true for all of you 🙂
Oh, I’m living vicariously through you! I would love sheep, but we have only .11 acre here. Oh, and city bylaws that prohibit keeping livestock. So that probably wouldn’t work… 🙂
We are diving in headfirst with our little urban homestead this season. Veggies and herbs started from seed, fruit trees, maybe chickens. (We’re still negotiating on the chicken front. I may give in & agree to wait until next year, or at least later in the season.) George is thinking we are getting in over our heads, but I figure how much can we possibly mess up on a tenth of an acre? The best way to learn is by getting in there & getting your hands dirty.
I am so looking forward to reading about all your adventures as this new life of yours unfolds… xo
your enthusiasm and excitement is contagious! thanks for brightening MY sometimes-bleak February… 🙂
So happy for you!! This sounds just wonderful 🙂
I’m so excited for you! Can’t wait to see what the future holds for your family. Thanks for sharing your journey!
Beautiful to watch your dreams come true! Thank you for sharing pictures with us : )
So happy for you. I can’t wait to watch it all unfold.
Oh, yes! I’m looking forward to spinning my own yarn from my own sheep. I have wanted this for almost as long as I can remember!
How wonderfully exciting! Enjoy your journey as well, Meghann!
I can not wait to read more of your journey as we move through these upcoming seasons! So happy for you guys!
I love that you mentioned your seed order, we’ve been making plans for our upcoming garden (our first one post-fire and I am so excited!) and I was hoping I might be able to find some seeds that were local’ish. You were the first person to come to mind that might know of a place – may I ask you where you get your seeds?
Oh, I feel like this is where we will be exactly a year from now. I love reading your farm posts. We’re closing on our farm on March 20, and I know exactly what that feeling of being a beginner at everything feels like. I can’t wait to hear more of whats going on at your house!
Kate, Seed Savers is local-ish. We went with Fedco this year as they had much of what we wanted, were organic, and affordable. Good luck!
You are right, this month is when the thoughts of what to come really stir with earnest. We are looking at our pastures, covered in snow and ice, with the knowledge of what they will become in a few short months. Although it is frustrating to not be outside as much as we’d like (hello -20C) I know that we have a spring, summer and autumn ahead with LOTS of outside time on their way!
We did our first year of farming last year and it was wonderful, overwhelming, crazy, hard, difficult, exhausting and utterly brilliant. You will take on too much but you will manage! Good luck with it all : )
PS We spent $600 on seeds last year : / We didn’t plant them all, we’ll get the rest in this year but we were just sooooo excited!
Congratulations. I am so very happy for you. Enjoy the roller coaster ride! xxx
That is so awesome!! My husband and I dream of a few acres someday…but for now we are in the city limits. We do love our small-ish home though and don’t want a big payment…so we are dreaming for our city yard!! We’ve been doing a lot of what you are doing too…it’s so hard to not just dive right in to it all!! But for this spring and summer we are going to build a chicken coop (hubs has started,) get a few chicks – 3
Or 4 only, and grow a few veggies of our own. I’m hoping we can be at least minimally successful with just those 2 major/minor additions. 🙂 love your blog!!
Wow how beautiful and all the tiny life budding already. So beautiful xxx
Oh man, do I hear you! We’re in the process of building a summer shelter on our new land, and reading, reading, reading so much! Even though I’ve homesteaded for a dozen years, there is so much I still don’t know, and so many things I feel that I can do better this time around. Fruit trees will be arriving in a few short weeks, garden needs to be sheet mulched, pond needs to be dug. Not to mention the water catchment system, solar panels, the list goes on and on! If it weren’t so darn exciting, it would be completely overwhelming!
Why did you guys decide on sheep? Why not beef and pigs and meat chickens? Jacob thinks we’ll add a few pigs to our beef operation (although I don’t eat pork) and use his dad’s farm to sell them at the La Crosse co-op. I mean wool is a nice thing to have a round, but they are not the easiest to keep. Beef are the easiest to keep if you make your own hay.
Thats so rad. The $600 is hilarious. In a blew the budget, broke the bank kind of way. 🙂
Our first priority is wool. Hands down. I am a spinner and passionate knitter. The meat will be a handy by-product. Our intention is to barter for beef and pork from friends with lamb meat. We think well probably add some other livestock as time goes by, but Ive been waiting for sheep for as long as I can remember.
Rachel, I’m so excited for you and your family. I share your dream but unfortunately my husband does not, so I’ll be visiting often to live vicariously through please!!!
Oh, it’s so awesome when dreams come true. Have fun!
Best photos ever! We’re dreaming with you, although we aren’t quite as close in getting them realized! I’m so excited about the year you have ahead of you!
Great! Thank you so much!
Sounds lovely! Have you ever read “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life” by Barbara Kingsolver (Author), Camille Kingsolver (Author), Steven L. Hopp (Author)
I think you will love it! It is a book to make anyone fall in love with raising all their own food!
Oh Rachel, I am so happy for you. Yes, the life you’ve been waiting for is beginning! Hand on and enjoy the ride!
How exciting for you and your family. I can only dream that one day, I will be doing the same things.
Amber, When it came out I kept meaning to. I adore Barbara Kingsolver. Thanks for reminding me of this. Its officially on my list!