So how did I become this unexpected homestead momma? I suppose you’ve already guessed by my blog name it came unexpectedly! And that is correct. About three years ago my husband and I were deciding where our family was going to buy a home. We had already planned on it being in the suburbs, two car garage, three or four bedrooms, basement, decent size yard, living room and dining room. You get the picture the average suburban house. The location would be still a reasonable location so my husband could still commute to his job in the city. I had already been homeschooling our daughter for preschool. And planned to also homeschool my son. So there was no need to have the best of schools for our perfect home. This made the search open to more cities in the suburbs. I so badly could not wait to finally find our perfect home, establish our roots, join our permanent homeschool group, join our church, create our new circle of lifetime nearby friends and start living my dreams for our family.
- Within the three years we had a few bizarre opportunities for relocating out of the state! My husband and I was asked if we would be interested in seeking a job possibility in Texas! It would definitely be a change for sure, but I actually loved the idea! A laid back, country/rodeo kinda feel. We tried very hard to seek the Texas move. But unfortunately it didn’t turn out. My husband did how ever get to work there temporarily while the kids and I stayed home.
- The other state change opportunity was in Tenessee. My husband’s family was planning on purchasing some property and the plan was to share a large piece of the property. My husband would not be a carpenter though so we would have had to have live off the land so to speak. I called it ” Laura Ingalls’ living”. I would have to not only do the tasks I was already doing in addition to gardening, tend to live stock, help build a house, can, soap making… You get the picture. We would also have very little money and didn’t have any large money making ideas we could start right away. I would also be leaving behind my family in IL. I loved the idea of a more relaxed nature free feeling kind of living though. Loved I would be in walking distance from family. Sadly, the more my husband and I thought about the idea of Tennessee we began to have some major doubts! And for me, some major uneasiness about the whole thing! I was extremely concerned for our children’s welfare. As much as I thought a”Laura Ingalls”life would be for them, I could not see how we would be able to financially live. Other things didn’t work out with my husband’s family buying the property so it never did work out. Now one might think as even I had thought what in the world did God have in stored for my family? And why was Texas and Tennessee put in our path along the way? I really did not understand at all! There were so many doors opening and closing. Especially for Texas! I now see how they all were used, at least a large part anyway. There are some things in life we just won’t ever understand till we our face to face with our maker.
- After the decision to not go the Texas or Tennessee route, we decided maybe we could still get to have some of the homesteading life here close by so that my husband could still work while we built a little micro farm or what have you. Do some farmers’ markets and other business ideas and maybe retire early from my husband’s current job. But this would require at least an acre. So the search was on for a property with an acre or more within 45 minutes or so from the city. The closets we got around that time was near Crete IL. But when I had finally called to check regulations on live stock, it left us with nothing again! It turns out that the properties we found that were on an acre or two had town rules about certain live stock! Who knew?! So here we were again searching for our perfect home! We found that we had some trouble finding a rural farm area with little rules near the areas 45 minutes or so from the city. So we decided that we would make the sacrifice of having Joe commute even longer. This way it would give us more options for a homestead. In the mean time our lease time was wrapping up at our rental home and the company we were renting from really wanted us to sign a six month to a year’s lease. Ahh! Talk about more stress!
- To make this long story short we finally came across a down payment affordable house in country farm land in Il. But it was so far the opposite way of Chicago that it was pretty close to Iowa! It was a gorgeous little cottage that sat on approximately 2 1/2 acres off a farm. Our backyard neighbors would be cows and a beautiful old barn, building and a silo of some sort. Not our property of course but what an amazing view! I didn’t even know about the beautiful views until we finally drove to this cottage on acres property two hours away from our current rental home. I just knew that it was beautiful and seemed to have a lot of potential! Shortly after finding this future prospect, I contacted the real estate agent to see what was up with this affordable but far place. She told me it was still available and I then set up an appointment with my realtor to check out this property! It was the first property we were actually in person going to see! I was very excited but very nervous! For sure there was something majorily wrong with this house! Maybe the house needs to be gutted or maybe even torn down or something.
- I really didn’t think we would fall in love with it. But we were curious and at this point, there wasn’t really anything else on our lap. And why not take a beautiful drive to a real country town. And I am so glad we did! For this was as close as possible to a perfect home! I didn’t even want to leave to go back home from looking at it! It was such a magical experience! I took a ton of pictures and we went back home to the suburbs and did everything we could to get the property as soon as possible! And that folks is how I finally found my home sweet home, my magical and unique cottage with over two acres homestead!I decided to write this blog and share my journey of my unexpected homesteading adventure with my family and I. Which is how I became The Unexpected HomeStead Momma! You see the rainbow really does come after the rain!