How we came to the country...

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How we came to the country...

One of my sweet little chicks...only a few days old.

You know, it almost doesn't seem fair, that my dear hubby and I actually are living our 'dream come true' of getting out of suburbia.  We never really intended to be here in the Sam Houston National Forest of Texas or intend on moving to the 'country' per se...He's from Issaquah, Washington and HE was longing for the forest. I had spent many a vacation pointing at shacks on hillsides in the Arkansas River Valley with my dad and mom--we were trying to pick the one we wanted to buy and fix up.Sigh... Dreams.... I loved the woods...deciduous forest..sunshine sparkling on damp leaves...the rustle of a squirrel through the undergrowth...ponds with all their minutae of life flitting here and there...
Rebekah though, now she is TRUE BLUE COUNTRY! She knew exactly what she wanted...pasture and lots of it!  (Along with the requisite horse of course!) The boys just wanted a place where they could dig holes without their meticulous father complaining that they were messing up the yard...which had to be perfect per the notices of the neighborhood Urban Gestapo...
In fact, this desperate need to dig had hilarious consequences when we first moved out in the middle of nowhere somewhere halfway between Willis and Cleveland..It's not a just point out the spot in a middle of green on the map.  Our second oldest dug a hole out in the woods that was big enough to fit THREE of our boys!! The sandy mulch was perfect and he had a total blast. I really think he felt a little better after that...He quickly moved on into young to leave childhood behind. I'm not sure if he would ever have been normal without that last boyhood accomplishment!

This was my very first dozen eggs from my very first chickens...minus an egg from Henny-Penny...her eggs are 'half-penny' size since she is a bantam. :o)   I don't know who was prouder...the hens..or me!

When we started looking for a place to actually buy after 23 years of RENTING (count em'!) had to be the absolutely perfect place. I guess only the Lord could have found a place that would satisfy all our longings...   We have tons of pasture and the only true homestead in our little area of the forest. In fact, they gave barrel racing lessons here apparently.  It had a lighted roping arena! Can you imagine how thrilled Rebekah was to find that?  For me (I had a desperate desire to raise chickens!), someone had built a chicken coop inside the barn...with 30 nest boxes...oh heaven!

For the boys, we had acres and acres of woods enough to play in and dig in all they wanted...and Jacob could finally learn to hunt.  For Christian, the Lord provided a gorgeous riding lawnmower...vroom! vroom!  He now has a second one that he and daddy are trying to take apart and fix up. The first one is for riding ...and mowing now and then too.

For Tim, the best part of all was that we were surrounded by tall green the ones he played in as a boy (and the mother of all workshops!) I knew we were going to buy this place, once Tim saw the workshop. (Thanks Lord!)

And for the kids, the best part of all was the barn which had a real loft. It became their playhouse  and all the friends that visited headed straight for that loft. They had so many adventures and games up there--it was the perfect clubhouse for a bunch of young teens. Sleeping up there was a privilege beyond all privileges...

And all my quilts that had been neatly folded and tucked away...covered in woodsy and country pulled out and hung on the walls of a real country home...where they knew they belonged. No more suburban quilt racks...just a homey place that fitted them perfectly.  They depicted my dreams of someday faraway and helped me not to give up.


Needled Mom said...

It is such a great place for children to be raised. There is always something to do in the country.

Those chicks are pretty darn cute. They grow up so fast and from the looks of them I think you are going to have quite a variety of pretty colored eggs.

Melissa said...

You are living our dream, that is for sure!

I have so been enjoying your posts as of late Donna. Full of such warmth and prose. Thank you for sharing the inner workings of your family life.

And yes those chicks are something cute! We have been trying to start up a coop for a couple years now, I am hoping next year is the magic year!

Amy said...

I can so relate...we're still in that dreaming place. But seeing how specifically the Lord brought each of your dreams to pass, well, it's inspiring. Thank you for sharing this. It is just the encouragement I needed to keep dreaming big. I'm going to be sharing this with Tommy tonight...he will be encouraged as well.

Donna said...

You guys are so cheering me! I'm always afraid I'm being too was a problem growing up. :o)

I do plan to post our portable chicken coop and how it was built, plus the websites that helped us most sometime soon.

antmee said...

My favourite memories of childhood were when we lived on 1200 acres. There was a mallee conservation park out the back of property and the Coorong National park out the front. Ocean was just across the coorong. A little valley not far from home that was packed with huge mushrooms we use to love picking too.

The only negative was the school bus was three miles down the road and if mum got sidetracked with her sewing and forgot to come pick us up, we had to walk!

Donna said...

Hahaahaha! That is hilarious antmee! My kids were certainly be walking too... Too funny! Good thing we home school so the kids don't have to take a bus!

Anonymous said...

Oh Donna,

The Lord knows everything about us. That longing that you had for the country was a gift from Him and He put you exactly where He wanted you to be :)

Enjoy your blessing,


Mary said...

Do you remember the road to my house when I lived in Rainbow Valley? It was a dirt and gravel road and when it rained a lot, I would just hope and pray that I would survive the trip, especially having to go through the low spots and what we called the "deep ravine" and the pot holes that were so deep at the bottom of it, that I sometimes didn't think I could come out of them.

Was it all worth it? Yes! To be able to live on over 230 acres with 13 other houses scattered over it, being able to see the stars at night, have hummingbirds light on my shoulders, coyotes smell my fingers and toes (I fed them) when I slept outside, and the turtles living under my couch in the hottest part of the summer.

Would I do it again, 18 years later and hopefully, a little wiser? Yes!

There is something about being able to walk out and touch the earth and know that you are connected to all that is.

Donna said...

Mom..I remember that road very well and I know how much you love living out of town.

It took us a long time to find our dream place. You seem to find them so easily! I'm so glad you have woods again...

Kerrie said...

Donna, I love this post!!! We lived on a farm when I only had 2 toddlers and it was the happiest time of our lives!! We raised Morgan Horses, had a lamb, a pony and a dog. We also raised chickens one year but they all turned out to be roosters! I still have a longing for the country and still dream that one day we will be there. Our backyard wildlife and lake will do while we dream.... hugs.

“There's nothing half so pleasant as coming home again.” ~ Margaret Sangster

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