Monday, August 7, 2017
When You're Only Dreaming
I am not too good at dreaming because this thing called reality always seems to be at the forefront. I am a realist. I just am. Period. That doesn't mean that I don't have dreams, though. In fact, I had a pretty big, deep-seeded dream to own a small hobby farm. I am one of those who might be able to be Amish, sans the hot skirts and lack of air conditioning in the summer. I'm not afraid of work, even hard work. Would I enjoy every second of it? No. I don't enjoy every second of the work I do here around my house, either. But I always do what needs to be done. There is something so idyllic about waking early with the sunrise, tending the small animals, working in the garden, preserving food, baking bread, providing meals for my family, and sitting on the porch in the evenings enjoying the sunset.
About a year ago we took the first step toward that dream. We purchased 17 acres about 2 miles outside of our small town. It was the perfect location and I could see our constructed farmhouse, barn, animals, and the like. We knew we would have a few years before we could start building, but the dreaming definitely started. I even started a Pinterest Board called Farm Living.
Around Easter we realized that going forward with this dream was not going to be a good move for us. We also decided that we were either going to have to put some significant money into our current home (a 1918 bungalow that we bought on a foreclosure 5 years ago for $30,000 and made some cosmetic changes to make it home) or we needed to sell it and buy something a little sturdier and more functional.
So, we put our house on the market and actually found a farmhouse in town, just a block away from our current home, with 2000 square feet for $90,000. We put in an offer and started showing our house.
But as time went by, and with each showing, I started to become more and more sad about the thought of leaving this house. I started to realize that the farmhouse life, even one technically in town, was not for me. Even the farmhouse decorating started to get on my nerves. And the thought started to occur to me that if we were going to pay an additional $60,000 for a different house, that the same amount of money (probably much less) could go into our current home to make it all that we want.
Strangely, the kids confirmed that they did not want to move, either, even though they were going to get bigger bedrooms, their own bathroom, and an upstairs.
So we discussed the renovations we would like to make to this house, started collecting bids for the work, backed out of our contract, and took our home off the market with plans to stay here forever. We are going to replace the roof, tear down our garage, erect an 8 foot privacy fence, put in new central air and heat, buy a nice shed, gut and completely remodel our one bathroom, turn our attic into a 450 square foot master suite with sitting area, add a bathroom in the upstairs suite, move Brynne into our current master bedroom, and do a couple of small updates to our kitchen.
In the meantime, during all of these topsy turvy decisions, two of my friends who have taken on the hobby farm life have expressed to me how much time and money (more than they ever thought) it has taken to make their dreams a reality. I started to realize that my reality is that I was only dreaming when it came to this whole farm life thing.
I want a more simple life as I age, not to add anything else to my plate.
I do not want to take care of even one. more. thing.
I have carved out a peaceful life doing exactly what makes me happy. Why would I change that?
The kids are happy. Why do I want to disrupt them?
We can have everything we want right where we are. I can even get some chickens someday if I desire.
In our society we continually want more and different. I do not want to do that anymore. I want to be settled and comfortable and live a quiet life. Ever since the final decisions have been made, I have been at total peace.
Sometimes we have to move toward what we want to realize we don't really want it after all.