Yesterday morning I checked my Timehop as usual looking for photos of my toddler from the year prior. When doing so I found this image from six years ago. It was a younger me before I cut off all my hair collecting vegetables in my Opa’s garden. I don’t remember who took the picture. Most likely one of my younger sisters. It brought back so many memories. Some vague images of my mom’s vegetable garden when I was very small and then our large future gardens of mostly herbs and flowers when we (my sisters, mom and eventually my step-dad) were older and living elsewhere. I also remember my Opa’s ranch type home that once had livestock before my time on this earth. Then when he moved a state away when I was a pre-teen he slowly made a few gardens in his new home. A vegetable patch, a few apple trees, berry bushes and a small greenhouse among other things. All with his own hands as is his way (and which I admire).
My childhood was full of farmers markets and swap meets. Handmade and homemade goods. My mom teaching us crafts and giving us the freedom to explore any interest that took hold of us as kids and teens and also the freedom to explore outside on our own. All alongside stories of her own childhood with talk of her animals and growing up on the glorious chunk of land I got to grow up with as well before it was sold and sadly modernized by the new owners. Of course there were other inspirations from both sides of the family but she was there to inspire us the most.
It’s funny to me now to see how different my sisters and I are. We all had nearly the same upbringing (my youngest sister is 14 so she has a little bit different of an experience) but have different interests. My husband and I want to live a little more rurally with a farm and animals. Eventually, using my talents (and his since he picks everything up at lighting speed so he will undoubtedly learn faster than I did) to create and sell goods we made from our land at markets and such. The others I won’t speak for but though they seem to both love crafting and fresh farm food I’m not sure they want to live a life smelling like natural fertilizer and farm animal fiber. Which is perfectly well!
Another part of me knows this yearning is naturally part of me. Whether through genetics or being born with the interest at heart. I have wanted it for so long. If you have read some of my blogs that weren’t recipes or how-to ‘s you would know that even as a child I felt this pull to the homesteading life. Nothing is more frustrating than living somewhere that you can’t live as you wish. I see the space we have and want to fill it with chickens and a garden instead of cement and mostly unusable plants. You can’t rush dreams though! So until the land we want makes itself available (we are always on the lookout!) I’ll be learning and growing through books and small hands on experiences.