When you’re young you always think you’ll move away. Things will be better when you’re far from
home. People will be nicer, the grass will be greener. I was no exception to this rule. I was sure I would go to college, get a great job (college = dream career, right?), move far away and live a luxurious, more exotic lifestyle than I had growing up.
Things didn't work out that way. I got the degree but careers were elusive. I went away to college but ended up finishing closer to home when I realized that I had outgrown being a party girl. I married the perfect man for me who also happened to be my jr. high and high school sweetheart. I realized that people are people wherever you go and life is what you make of it. I wanted to settle down and raise a family more than I wanted an impressive, successful career. I began to realize that what I wanted for my future children was exactly what I had growing up.
My childhood home was back a long lane and over a bridge. My great grandparents had originally
purchased the property and built a house. Then they gave land to my grandpa and my great uncle. My great uncle built a house next door and my grandpa built the house we lived in. When grandpa got remarried and moved into town he sold the house to my parents. I got to live next door to my great grandma and my great aunt growing up, on property that had been in the family for three generations.
My back yard was field and fence. My brother and I played in the barns, smoke house, coal bin and corn crib. We walked in the woods and played in the creek. We built forts and hideouts in the ditches and shrubs.
We had enough privacy that we took showers in the summer rain as it poured off the
We could run, shout, explore and wander to our heart’s content. It was an idyllic childhood and
I wouldn't change a single thing.
When my husband and I got married we didn't think we could afford to buy in the country so we started looking at houses in town (population 12,000). After looking at about a dozen houses in town I knew I would never be as happy as I was in the country. Then my parents made us an offer we couldn't refuse. If we would stay close enough for them to see their future grandchildren as much as they wanted they would give us 5 acres to build a house on. They made the same deal with my brother. It was an offer too good to refuse. When our first son was almost 2 years old we moved into our country home.
We live on what I like to call our commune. We live about a quarter mile off the road, back a long lane in the woods. There are three kids and three adults, which works out perfectly for us. We share meals and our lives with my mom who lives next door. We help each other with yard work, heavy lifting and chores. We all take care of the kids so it’s more like they have 3 parents some times. We collectively have 2 horses, 3 dogs, 7 barn cats, a pond full of fish and more turtles than we can count.
My children enjoy the same smells from my childhood, sweet feed, crops and damp woods dirt.
We have the same scenery, fields full of crops, woods full of wonder. They hear the same sounds,
woodpeckers, coyotes, owls and the occasional gun loving neighbor. They can go barefoot and feel our very own property under their feet.
We will never drive a brand new car, wear the latest fashions or have a tv in every room but we are perfectly content. Where I come from life is simple and sweet.