It all started with a documentary called "Food Inc." Perhaps you have heard of it or even watched it yourself. I would highly recommend it. At the time, my husband and I would have considered ourselves environmentally-friendly and animal-loving people, but we gave little thought to what we ate and where it came from. Simply wasn't on our radar. This movie changed everything. I remember we both sat there in stunned silence when the movie finished, trying to take it all it, grappling with this new knowledge. I don't remember which one of us said it, but something was said along the lines of "Well, if we want to do something about this, we better start growing our own food." So began a new chapter in our lives. There was no going back, once we knew about these problems with the food system - can't unlearn something.
My daughter was born around this time. During one of her middle of the night nursings, as I was dozing in the rocking chair, God revealed a vision to me. Now, these sorts of things don't usually happen to me, and dare I sound too "out there" and mystical, I can think of no other word to describe what God showed me that night as I wavered in that delicious place between sleep and wakefulness. He showed me a small beautiful farm, full of life and vitality. Abundant gardens, my children playing joyfully in the yard, me harvesting the fruits of my labors. A garden so productive that we had plenty to spare and we blessed others with our over-abundance. It was very clear to me that God was revealing my new home to me and telling me what to do - work this land with love and care, grow food that will nourish your family and others in need. Okay Lord, I can do that. "But", I asked Him, "what shall I call it? This place needs a name." And immediately, He responded "Third Day Farms". I was curious about that name, but decided to trust Him (more on that in a later post). My daughter finished nursing and as I lay her back down to sleep, my head was spinning with dreams and ideas.
I am a private person, and quite honestly, I thought people would say I was crazy if I told them I had a vision. So, I kept it a secret, but told my husband is was time for us to sell our home in the suburbs and look for something in the country. The house was listed, we waited for buyers and in the meantime, we began looking for "Third Day Farms", even though my husband didn't know about this dream/vision in my head.
Nearly a year later, we found it. A home came on the market and we went to look at it, even though it was way out of our price range (do NOT do this! Not a good idea!). The moment we pulled in the driveway, I had to fight back tears. We had driven past this home from time to time and I had always admired it, dreaming about what it would be like to live there. I knew without a doubt THIS was where we were supposed to live....but how would we ever afford it??? Walking around the 3 acre property, I saw bits and pieces of my vision revealed to me. My children were hungry, so we looked around and found wild raspberries for them to eat. Already, this land was feeding and nourishing us. It was perfect! I left that day feeling distressed and hopeless. We could never afford this place.
Lo and behold, we finally found a buyer for our house. Just as we did, the price on the home we wanted dropped into our price range. We quickly wrote up an offer, prayed like crazy and waited. They accepted! I could not believe our dreams were coming true. We closed 1 week after selling our home and promptly moved into my parents basement for 4 months, because some parts of the home were almost unlivable and we wanted to fix them before we moved in with the kids. Funny how every one's interpretation of "dream house" is different. Ours certainly is not "dreamy", but it offers us the "lifestyle" of our dreams.
The "New" House
View of the backyard from my kitchen window
Fast forward one year and there have been many changes on our little farm. We've been busy building and painting fences, raising egg layer chickens, preparing a 4,000+ sq. foot garden, planning a small orchard with fruit trees and berries, renovating the 1880's barn that has been abandoned since the '60's, all while attempting to slowly dig our house out of the 1950's (the last time it was "remodeled"). Money is extremely tight, so we have to be patient and creative. But through it all, we are overwhelmed by God's blessings. He has provided for all our needs and many of our wants as well. Our adventure has just begun and we are so excited to see where God leads us as we attempt to turn my vision into a reality.