(Our ranch in the winter…I love the remoteness of our home…smack dab in the middle of now where! Perfect!)
Our Homestead Anthem
“On top of the world”
by Imagine Dragons
“….I’ve had the highest mountains
I’ve had the deepest rivers
You can have it all but life keeps moving
I take it in but don’t look down
‘Cause I’m on top of the world, ‘ay
I’m on top of the world, ‘ay
Waiting on this for a while now
Paying my dues to the dirt
I’ve been waiting to smile, ‘ay
Been holding it in for a while, ‘ay
Take you with me if I can
Been dreaming of this since a child
I’m on top of the world.”
WOW! It is with unbelief that we are celebrating our 1year anniversary on our homestead. One year!!! It is mind boggling that we have already been here one year yet in other ways our old life seems decades ago.
This day last year found us hobbling our two tired trucks, pulling all of our wordly possessions, up the long 4×4 rough road to our new homestead. After travelling across the country with four young children, a pig, rabbits, chickens and four dogs we were all so relieved and excited to have arrived. Though our first night was a bit intimidating with arriving in the middle of the mountains, late at night in the cold and dark to bare land we were so thankful to be there. Mountain man and Alaska set up the tent in the dark while I cuddled tired, cold and scared littler ones in the truck.
The next morning greeted us with a glorious scene of birds landing on the beautiful marsh. Land untouched. A true pioneer homestead complete with abandoned pioneer cabin sitting quietly in the woods built in 1913.
So much to explore. Soooo much to do…….
Our first year on our homestead has bustled with activity, adventures and memories ever since!!
From spending six L-O-N-G months in our tent….to building our own home ourselves (with a little help from friends and family (we love you !!)). Cooking outside for an entire year…yes you read that right… I have offically been cooking outside for one whole year today! I am waiting with baited breath at this point for the cistern hole to be filled in so my cook stove can be finally installed. (Finally)
(Mountain Man and Alaska positioning the cistern)
Animals have been born, some sold, others providing wonderful meals. We love that they are able to roam and live out their lives in the untouched mountains.
Mountain Man has amazed me with his homesteading vigor. From building our home (my husband is not a carpenter by trade but a horse man), learned how to repair his tractor, pumped water endlessly from creeks in -35’c weather all winter, chopped wood pretty much non stop since we moved here, birthed goat babies long into the night and is currently breaking and training horses.
(the creek now running thru our driveway)
The boys are continuing to thrive and explore homestead life. Its fun watching where their strengths are and what brings them joy.
Cowboy (age 9) is sure our goat go to guy! With the quickest hands on the homestead he can get any goat out the herd for us. He loves to help me milk our ladies and takes joy in a cuddle with anything with fur or feathers. Cowboy has taken up gold panning and with the massive amount of flooding on our road has used the crazy new water ways to sift the underlying ground for gold! So far none yet but if he ever does….
(Cowboy and Cubbie at our marsh)
Alaska (age 12) is one of the hardest workers I have ever met. This young son of ours amazed us this year with working 12 hr days (day after day) helping build our home, late nights helping dad birth baby goats, fencing and chopping a million cords (almost ha ha) of fire wood. On top of it worked evenings and weekends to complete his grade 6 curriculum by the middle of April!! Alaska has also taken up playing the guitar and has joined our church band. Hes now rocking the mountain top!
Bear cub (age 6) is usually found with his mother trailing behind him trying to get him to wear shoes or a coat! Mud, puddles, collecting chicken eggs, and building forts takes up alot of his days. As bear cub has a learning disability his learning (and loving) to read has warmed my heart to no end this year!!!
Cubbie (age 4) always works hard to keep up to his three big and boisterous brothers. Cubbies health has been a constant source of highs and lows this year. March looked very grim and April brought relief. We continue to trust in The Lord to provide health to our little boy , one day I will share his story.
As for me….goodness it has been a hard but wonderful first year !! Ill admit preparing for this journey here I dreamed of it from a very romantic mindset. I saw myself in fields of wild flowers with chickens roaming around (ok that happens), gardening with great success (not happening as i dreamed yet)….truth be told it has thrown more challenges my way than I could have ever pre planned for.
We have plans and dreams for this coming year. Mountain man plans to re fence the pastures with lumber from our forests. I have started our seeds and will start building a pallet fence next week to (hopefully) keep out the pig and goats this year (ha ha). Our pig pen will be finished and our “free range pig” will get a ‘lady friend’. Conversations regarding preparations for next winter are already being had (such a homestead reality..), and WATER has been promised to me soon from Mountain man (fingers crossed..and toes!!).
We have decided to remain without solar or wind energy and only use the generator for periodic needs.
Earth day did elicit a giggle from all of us. With not having power, running water, septic, phone service or Internet what do you give up????
We are enjoying getting to know our little community we live in. We are about 20 minutes from a little general store in an area of 500 people. Our nearest neighbour remains about 300 acres away ….others miles away as we have crown land on two sides and unlived on homesteads above us. Not a stop light for miles and miles (about 45 minutes of driving actually lol).
I have enjoyed working at the little general store part time, getting to know who makes up our community. It warms my heart to see the banged up hard working trucks pull up full of men with camo and plaid, long beards and smelling of freshly cut timber. Children showing up on horseback (yes they do!), atvs and dirt bikes to buy an ice cream. Moms needing a listening ear, tough as nails on the outside but soft on the inside. If you homestead get to know your community !! Mountain man has gleaned so much wisdom from the old ranchers in the area who have lots of stories to share and sadly not listened to enough.
Today in celebration of our first homesteading anniversary we had corn bread on the griddle out side. We sang our homestead anthem at the top of our lungs (“On top of the World” by imagine dragons)….reminisced…laughed…grumbled…praised God….and got excited for the next year of adventures!!!
The Prayerful Pioneer
P.S if you know our families story our anthem will be meaningful to you. We have walked through some of the deepest and darkest valleys. Our dream has always been to homestead but along the way our family’s very existence at times was threatened….but God held us in the palm of His hand…and here we are…on top of the world!!