A new path has appeared beneath my feet.
It’s funny how they do that. Perhaps life has left you wandering without a path, it might be pleasurable, or you may feel lost, then a path appears before you embodying curiosity or salvation. Or maybe you are already on a path, but an unexpected turn off appears with a myriad of tantalising possibilities.
Honestly, I’m not sure which my case is, but my toes have touched down on a very distinct, broad, and exciting new path. It is a natural path, no man made efforts in sight, just the lingering tale of many feet having left their mark on the earth. It is a natural journey I am hoping to find, with each step I hope to move away from the world of man made things; the plastics, the removal from nature, the hurried life.
I have been bitten by the homesteading bug.
This means large changes are now in motion. My partner and I are ready and eager to move from a rented in-town apartment, to buying a rural house for ourselves. For all our excitement, it is still much easier said than done. Then there is the rest of it. Luckily I have done seven years of vegetable farming which will come in handy, but my experience with animals is woefully minimal.
And I am dreaming BIG. Naturally there will be some chickens, because what would a farm be without chickens! There is a painter’s palet of egg colours, chicken colours and personalities bright in my mind’s eye. My partner is rather keen on having ducks as well, with their sleek feathers and delicious eggs.
He also has a preference for goats, and since we’re going big I say why not! Goat cheese is a favourite in our household, and they are certainly ideal to have about for the eating of less than desirable vegetation.
I am strongly inclined towards some beautiful sheep, because I love to knit and just learned to spin wool. Being engaged in the full process of raising the animal, shearing, cleaning the fleece, spinning, and then knitting something means so much to me. To be able to give my thanks directly to the animal that has supplied me with warmth, and be able to appreciate each step and what it entails is a cycle I long to be a part of. Something I could say of my interactions with all these animals.
Also very important to me would be having a dairy cow. I am ready for milk, making butter and cheese, sharing surplus with friends and family. It is amazing the difference between thinking about taking care of a goat and taking care of a cow. Is it the difference between being able to pick up the animal if necessary? Okay, maybe you can pick up a cow, but I certainly can’t, either way I sorely wish I had been brought up on a farm so that all of these animals care was second nature, but I say it is never too late!
Now, I grant you that this fellow is perhaps not the poster child of beauty, but he’s awfully smart and I wouldn’t mind a few of his kind in my life as well. Pigs are fascinating creatures and quite handy to have about. Besides, how can you resist a face like that?
In addition I dream of bees, apple trees, herb gardens, and vegetable gardens galore! Not to mention renewable energy, more home made goods about the house, canning… I’m just naming things at random because there is so much on my mind!
Thank you for taking a little stroll with me down the beginning of this new path and seeing the shiny possibilities of my hopes and dreams. I’ve decided perhaps it will be interesting to track the progress of this journey and thus have started a section for it on my blog. Who knows where I will be in five years, or even just one.
I certainly don’t. Anything is possible.