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Thursday, March 26, 2015

New Horizons!

click photo for origin
Last year was tough. 
We lost some friends.
Too young.
Far too young.

As Christians, we know this life is just a temporary stop in the big picture,
but we still want to savor the 'blink of an eye' we are here.

In my last post, I told you there were changes coming. 
Our lives have taken a turn in another direction. 
We have left the role of caretaker behind.
We look forward to a new adventure away from the farm.

As often happens when people stare death in the face, it spurs them to make changes--which for us was buying an RV. There's nothing like losing friends at a young age (from our perspective) to make you realize how really short this life is. Suddenly, priorities shift and those unfulfilled dreams become urgent.

As much as we love our life in the country, we have always wanted to see 49 states. I've seen a few--Ray has seen more--but now we want to check them off the proverbial bucket list.

Both of us have camped and boated a lot in our separate pasts.
Now it's time to make those memories together. 

We did a little bit of traveling last fall. 

We hope to do a lot more this year. 

We plan to do it almost full time next year.

 Eventually, I'll make our own map, 
and slowly fill in the blocks.

We plan to take an extended trip out west next year, hitting many landmarks, but also scoping out our next address. Could it be in Colorado? Utah? We've talked about being snow birds, but we would miss the four seasons. A place with milder winters would be nice. Our friends out west have told us to come. "There's land waiting..."

My future posts will be mostly about our travel adventures (and misadventures!) along with memories we've made here on the farm.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Time to Move On...

Remember this?

This crazy photo served as my title cover for all these years--a little tweaking now and then. You'll never know how much thought I put into designing it.

This blog was to be about a middle-aged couple that decided to buy some land and learn to raise critters and food.

I wonder if anyone noticed the type of garments on the clothesline. The pink dress was symbolic of my life off  the farm. Get it? Yeah, I'm that obsessed. And that little spot for the pink dress--fairly proportionate of the time I spend off the farm. I am a homebody. I love it here. Why would I want to be anywhere else? Each little branch and twig is part of an actual photo from our farm. The cherry blossoms bloom near the garage. That pine branch tipped with a perfect cone stands in the yard between the house and barn. There's our barn and garden in the background. Nekoda, Sadie, Derby and Nanny, Chubbers and Paint Girl, Mr J and Buddy all got special placement on my cover.

Why would I want to be anywhere else?

 Oh, yeah. Winter.

I used to call it my favorite season.

Maybe many of you know what I'm talking ablout.

These last two winters have been killers--record lows every other day, record amounts of snow fall, record number of days below zero, record number of days with wind chills below zero degrees kelvin...
Okay, that last statement might have been an exaggeration, but the others weren't far from the truth! I was ready to pack up the RV and head to Florida--but I would have never gotten it out of the driveway! That's reason #1, but let's just try to forget about winter for now.

Situations change. Goals change. Dreams change.

When we moved here, we were both employed making pretty good money. I planned on this place being paid off before retirement. Things changed.

The place we worked at was closing and we didn't want to transfer. Seeing the writing on the wall, Ray and I retired. We adjusted our belts and stayed. But slowly, we are being taxed out of our dream.

We could probably stay here for the rest of our lives, but it would mean doing little else. Between taking a chunk of our income and all the upkeep, we are pretty much tied to this farm. Not a bad situation to be in, mind you, but nonetheless, tied.

We have been here for over eleven years without a vacation together. It's not easy finding critter sitters. We didn't mind. It's like vacation where we live. But we still wanted to see the country some day (reason #2--We made a big step in that direction this past fall. That will be the subject of my next post.) so we're planning on down-sizing in the next year.

It was hard to change my cover photo...hard to say goodbye to a time that was so wonderful. But new wonderful things are on the horizon, and I wanted my blog to reflect that. The old 'blahwg' name is also gone. I was reluctant to change the name, but most of my regular followers are no longer blogging. So I guess it truly is time to move on. I can't wait to tell you about my plans for this blog, and for the future! But this post is getting rather long, so you'll have to wait.