"The dream is dead"

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This is an exact quote of a woman to my friend. I met the woman once and even though we don't see eye to eye on a couple of things, I had great respect for her knowledge/abilities. She's giving up on homesteading, except maybe the garden and co-ops. Her kids(9 of them) aren't interested in all the work that goes with it I guess and her husband is not supportive. The kids are discovering the things of the world. This broke my heart, she's even selling her grain mill.:-(

It seems she's not the only one, others are doing the same or at least in part. This summer has been very hard for me, with moving, rebuilding(not remodeling), family stuff, the garden, the weather. I've questioned my sanity and determination, and I still want to pursue the dream-guess I've been put through the fire.

When my husband was installing the heat pump(he's a a.c.heating service tech manager) I thought wow, how many hours will he have to work to pay for that, and the electricity. We also heat by wood but he wants the heat pump for back up the a.c. and he does get it cheaper.

Have you ever thought of how long you have to work to pay for something?

Have you ever almost let the dream die?

-- Cindy (S.E.IN) (atilrthehony_1@yahoo.com), August 09, 2001


yup, I've let a dream die..the dream of making more $$$$$ than I need, of having some really neat "toys", the dream of finally having a Volvo in my old age, and the dream of watching somebody else do my laundry and housecleaning as long as I pay them $300/week..oh,you mean the homestead dream! Yup, I almost let that die, telling myself we were too old to have a little farm in the country, too citified to learn about chickens and homemade cheese, to nervous to be alone in the woods when my husband is away, too hard to do without electricity in a bad storm, too hard to do pretty much everything we do now....I alomost let it die, you bet....It was a choice we made..we could be still in Jersey or PA living the "good life"..I could have my Volvo and sure could have hired somebody to clean house, etc...we could have afforded to eat out three times a day, and go on a cruise each year with our friends..so, why in heaven's name are we here in Alabama canning, raising chickens, using kerosene lamps, whacking snakes and wasps and building a small country store???? Because we feel better about our life now. Because when I hear the hens in the yard, and weed the garden (such as it is) I feel as if I belong here, doing simple things and reaping marvelous rewards..Chin up....look around and smile at what you have made..the older you get, the more you will be glad you chose this life vs the "norm"...God bless.

-- lesley (martchas@bellsouth.net), August 09, 2001.

I've been through the fire too this year, but the dream is stronger than ever. Here I am living in town, and I cannot wait for my triumphant return to the country. Good News is we are getting closer than ever.

Little Bit Farm

-- Little Bit Farm (littleBit@compworldnet.com), August 09, 2001.

I know what you mean about the kids not being supportive of the "dream". Husband is not really that deep into it either anymore. We have lived the "country dream" for about 5-6 years now and, while we still embody many of the values we have learned in that time, we find ourselves gradually moving back to "civilization" in alot of small ways.

I don't look at it as a dying dream, but rather just another chapter of my life. Why, even some of the most well-known critics of society were Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Henry Thoreau. However, neither managed to withdraw from the world and/or live a simple country life for very long.

I have learned much in the last 6 years. Much about myself, my marriage, my children, and most of all the real world around me. Much like Thoreau, we feel that we are getting ready to begin another chapter of our lives, built on what we have learned in this chapter. We are definately better for the experience.

-- Lisa (tepeeclan@nidlink.com), August 09, 2001.

I sure have thought about how long I have to work to pay for something. It's the continual time/money quotient. Whenever I have time, I don't have money, whenever I have money, I don't have time. Energy figures in there too, but it's easier to just do the two. Somethings are better left to professionals. I have wasted time and money on things that could have been done faster, better and less expensively in the long run by pros. But then I have saved a lot of time and money by learning to do a lot of things that are the usual things folks call pros for. It's an offset. Sometimes, my time isn't worth much, but usually it is my most precious economy.

I have thought that maybe I was simply flat out insane for working so hard to have good veggies, and learning to make cheese, and doing what I do everyday, but I love it. I wouldn't have it any other way. The things I have learned in the past five years from doing instead of reading are invaluable, and I can help others, too!

You learn the most from the hardest things. Sometimes the hardest thing to learn is that you can't make someone share your dream, so you compromise. Keep your chin up, it'll all work out!

-- dreen (bisquit@here.com), August 09, 2001.

Hi Cindy not a dream for me just my way of life. Bob se,ks.

-- Bobco (bobco@hit.net), August 09, 2001.

Yes, I have come very very close to giving up. It has been a difficult year, what with the CAE, long summer days working until you would like to drop, but still have to milk all the goats, four little children running around chattering and making what sounds like meaningless noise to me. The work never really seems to end. There is always something else that I should be doing every time I want to sit down and take a rest. Sometimes it seems like stubborness, and the sweet smile on my baby's little face are what keep me plodding along. That, and I'm not sure if I could live without the goats!!

-- Rebekah (daniel@itss.net), August 10, 2001.

Hey Cindy! Don't EVER give up! As my old pappy would say when we would encounter some problems---"hang by the willers" and when we succeeded he would say "you made the riffle"! We did and finally got back to the "sticks" where I belong. Ya'll know, old fat hillbilly type hicks DON'T belong amongst crowds! hoot gibson, the old hillbilly from the "sticks" of ILL. Matt.24:44

-- hoot (hoot@pcinetwork.com), August 10, 2001.

Well having gone back to civilization out of necessity, I hope the Lord never takes me here again. Once I own land I'd just as soon die and be buried on it. I also have no desire to go to a hospital. There have to be better ways to die than hooked up to machines with tubes down your throat. The way great-grandma did it is better to me. Dying with the friends and family who love you around, and the God who made you with his arms open wide, on the land that you poured your blood sweat and tears into. Now that is peace! Having lived in the country for 6 years myself, I almost think that even though I Thanked God everyday for what he'd given me, I didn't appreciate it enough. I feel that I didn't do enough with what was given to me. The reasons I first left the city are still there. The food supply is still in a desperate mess. The world is still an immoral, crazy nightmare. The only way to change things is still with total commitment to God and to seeing him through his creation. When I stand in a pasture with the wind blowing through my hair I can still be still and Know that HE is God. No, I don't ever see a time when I will be ready to go back to civilization. I'd rather be planted beneath my herb garden!

Little Bit Farm

-- Little Bit Farm (littleBit@compworldnet.com), August 11, 2001.

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