Whenever I tell people we moved from apartment living in New Jersey to a 17 acre farmstead in rural Va, they all say something like, “Wow! Surely this must have been some life long dream of yours to live on a farm?” And I always feel kinda bad when I say, “No, actually it wasn’t.”
“And don’t call me Shirley.”
I’ve always known I wasn’t a city girl and the years I spent living in New York City while studying at FIT erased any doubt I may have had. I will alway choose falling asleep to crickets over cars. I will always choose wide open spaces over the small, jam packed ones, where I just inhaled the smoke from someone else’s bad habit.
But I never wanted to live on a farm or in the country. I wanted suburbia. The house with the white picket fence on the cul de sac. Think June Cleaver but in yoga pants and a lot more take out and Target. I never dreamed of roosters that crow, “Rise and shine suckas,” every morning. I never dreamed of goats, or sheep, giants dogs or living somewhere where you can’t see your nearest neighbor. But, no neighbors, no pants, amirite??
And the other day when we got our, “Congrats on the farm, y’all might be crazy,” letter from the USDA, we both felt a sense of pride, a “hey man, we did it,” :::fist bump:::: We left our life up north a little over two years ago and decided to pursue this crazy idea of owning a farm without even owning so much as a rake or a shovel. We spent the first few months down here just making trips back and forth to Lowes. And no trip to Lowes is ever complete without a trip back to Lowes for all the stuff you didn’t know you needed while you were there. So, naturally we are on a first name basis with an employee named James and I should invite him to Christmas cause I see him more than my own family.
Sure, there are times I picture Dan and I on vacation on some tropical island. Some, “This could be us, but we have a farm,” moments. But there is something really rewarding about building an infrastructure that all works together. Our sheep mow the lawn and produce fertilizer which goes in the garden. The garden produces food for us and the chickens eat the scraps and then produce fertilizer for compost to go back in the garden and lay eggs for us. I remember how hard Dan and I fangirled over the very first egg we found.
We aren’t at our goal of being totally self sufficient, and honestly I’m not sure we ever will be until I can get my hands on some diet coke seeds, but we have come a long way. I hope Nathan appreciates growing up on a farm and maybe one day a princess will call him, “farm boy,” and boss him around.
Note: if you don’t understand the above reference you haven’t really lived your life, and YOLO, so go watch The Princess Bride.