I have a dream.
A dream where there is endless fields, and grass, and lazy evenings. Where the food is always delicious, the coffee always good, and the bread homemade. I have a dream that goats could wander for as far as the eye could see, and where they can cry as loud and as much as they want because no one is around to hear them. I have a dream of ducks and geese, and a dairy cow.
I have a dream where the floor boards creak a little bit, and there is worn spots in the dining room floor where for decades generation after generation have gathered around the table to eat together. A large table that is big enough to welcome anyone who might be in need of some good food and merriment. A table to bring people together.
I have a dream of a kitchen with worn cupboards. A kitchen that sends the mouth watering aroma of food wandering down the halls and through the entire house. A kitchen with a kettle on the stove where the women folk can gather together, sip tea and talk about men. I have a dream that the counters are lined with various jars holding fermented goodness – kombucha, kefir, sauerkraut, and all manners of fermented garden veggies.
I have a dream where the garden is wide and vast. Where the bounty comes hot and heavy all summer long, and where many can partake of its splendor. I have a dream where no one wanted store bought tomatoes that have no flavor, but instead insisted on the sweetness that only a tomato warmed and ripened by the sun has. A dream where the zucchini is plentiful, the eggplant a deep shade of purple, and the squash and pumpkins are the final hug of summer. A last offering to be hidden away in the dark corners of the basement to be prepared during the winter months when the garden is asleep under a blanket of fresh snow.
I have a dream of fruit trees in the spring. Blossoms and bees and the promise of summer to come. And a dream of the harvest in the Fall. Pears, plums, peaches, cherries, and apples. The bounty of summer to be stored up in jars for the winter.
I have a dream where there is excitement and pitter pattering of little feet running down the hall Christmas morning. I have a dream of being able to share this life and this world with the next generation. To tell stories around the fire, to pass on traditions and wisdom in a way that is not common now. To raise up children who love the Lord and who understand and cherish the things that matter like their history, old world wisdom, stories, and good food.
I have a dream where I sit on the front porch with my Love, rocking away in our rocking chairs looking out over the fields. Watching the corn and the cows and understanding how incredibly blessed we are. I have a dream of grandchildren who want to learn how to do things just like Grandpa did. I have a dream of leaving something of true value and importance to the next generation. I have a dream of my old wrinkled hands working along side the youthful hands of my granddaughter as I teach her how to bake bread. I have a dream of watching my children rise up and conquer their dreams.
I have dreams. Dreams of my future. Dreams to keep me going and to remind me in the dark times what I am working towards. When it appears that there is no end to the darkness my Love and I snuggle up on the couch, watch our trespassing chickens free ranging in the neighbour’s yard across the street, and dream.
If you wish to be a homesteader, you have to have dreams. Some days the bleakness that can come with this life will be all around you. You need to have a vision deep down inside that will push you forever forward when all you want to do is curl up and forget it all.
Why bother milking a goat, when you can just buy a litre of milk? Why bother caring for baby chicks, waiting months for the first egg when you can just buy a dozen eggs? Why plant those little seeds in February when the snow is billowing all around and summer is so so far away, and care for them, water them, watch them grow, protect them from chickens, from bugs, from rabbits, nurture them, and wait for the first little blossom to turn into a tiny little vegetable, when you can just buy the vegetables at the store? Why do any of this?
In a world where so little is free anymore, have dreams.