Are we dreaming of making a big change, but won’t ever execute it?
Will we be content with ourselves if we don’t at least try?
Are we ready to put down roots and settle in long term?
Do we really want to change our entire lifestyle?
Is this the right thing to do for our family?
Is God calling us to this “new adventure”?
Can we swing this dream financially?
And truly, are we choosing to stay where everything is “good” because they are afraid of the change and work that would be required to get to “great”?
These were all questions that we asked ourselves before we started down this road almost 4 years ago. My husband and I both dreamed of having land, and building a house on it. I wanted acres where the sunsets were golden and the fields were ready to be photographed. My husband wanted to hunt on his own property, fish in his own pond and grow food on his own land. We wanted to have a place where our kids could run and play in nature rather than on concrete. We weren’t ungrateful for what we had, in fact, that couldn’t be farther from the truth! We were happy in our neighborhood, but we kept dreaming of more. A lifestyle that demanded hard work and physical labor. A place that gave back as much as you put in to it. But, I was a stay at home mom of 4 kids (1, 3, 5 & 7 years old), homeschooling, and running my own photography business. Michael was working full time and working on his degree program in the evenings and weekends. It wasn’t like we had extra time OR money. Simply keeping up with his college tuition, so we didn’t have to take out loans, was really keeping us on our financial toes.
At the beginning, we decided it would be on our “10 year plan”… In other words, we put it on the back burner so we could still dream, but didn’t have to face any of the inconvenient parts. Saving up enough for the down payment, living in limbo for 2-3 years, and fixing/finishing our current home completely overwhelmed both of us. We didn’t have any extra time as it was, never mind adding more to our plates. Moving further in to the country meant that we would probably not have internet access unless we had satellite (which is expensive), that we might not have cell service, that Michael might have to double his commute time to work each day and even that the grocery store wouldn’t be very close any more was something I had to reconcile. It was just easier to slide our dream to the back burner. Besides, we had 4 kids, Michael was finishing his degree program, I was super busy growing my photography business and it sounded so much more logical to just stay where we were at.
Then one day I was driving home from a friend’s house “who had land” and as I thought about our time there, I realized, all of the images I had in my mind of our little ones playing and growing up on our land would never become reality. I started doing the math and figured that my oldest would be in college before we even got started, and my youngest would be approaching Middle School age! I talked with Michael that night and we both agreed that we wanted to figure out how to make our “10 year plan” happen in the next 3-5 years.
I got really serious about saving every penny of my photography income for a land down payment, and about a year later, after searching and searching for the right property, and we finally found it in Hazel Green Alabama. (Right around the same time that I found out that I was pregnant with our 5th child.) Wana know something really amazing? There was internet already on the road, the cell service was stronger than it was in our neighborhood and instead of 5 minutes to the closest grocery store, it was now only 12 minutes away and my husband only added 15 minutes to his commute. Pretty much, it was more perfect than we could have imagined! Between some investments that we had made earlier in our marriage, intensive saving and God simply providing, we were able to purchase the property. I don’t even want to think about what we would have missed out on if we had just taken the easy road and stayed where we were…
- We closed on our property in the March of 2017
- Michael graduated with his BA May 2017
- Our 5th child was born June 2017
- Sold our home July of 2018 and moved in to an apartment with our 5 kids…
- Celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary in August 2018
- Got our sweet chocolate lab Mocha November 2018
- Started building February of 2019
- Moved in to our forever home August of 2019
It’s has been a pretty crazy 3 years… It wasn’t easy… I am glad it is over… but it was worth it.
So what are our future plans for our farm??? Read Here!