I haven’t updated all of you in quite a while. The truth is, I just haven’t felt like writing. We’ve been busy selling things and showing our property, and I’m just tired. My emotions have gone up and down. Every time God moves in our life, I get excited–what does He have for us next? And then, a lack of faith steps in and I worry–what does He have for us next? It is scary to trust, and to go where we know He’s leading…
As much as I’ve internally stomped my feet and said “no God, we’re not selling this farm!”, my husband and I feel total peace that selling, is, in fact, what we are supposed to be doing. And so, we’ve been selling animals, and equipment. Yesterday we sold a dairy cow. We’ve sold all of the turkeys that we were raising for Thanksgiving. Many of our laying hens were purchased last night. Our Great Pyrenees puppy, Lexi, who we just got went to her new home last Saturday. It is sad to watch all of the animals go.
We’ve shown the property to many people. Lots of people want our property. Lots, I fear, would be in the same boat as us–or worse. When people ask about what is most profitable on the farm, we say, without a doubt, grass fed beef, and raw dairy. Pastured poultry is–well–a huge money-sucker. We wish we had this same advice in the beginning. Maybe we could’ve avoided the debt. If we’d fenced the entire property and filled it with beef (or maybe even grass fed sheep), I think we’d be doing ok right now. Lesson learned. I hope that whoever buys this place next will be wise, financially. Many have talked about buying the farm with another family member. Great! Good idea….I hope it works out for someone to do that…
As we think about our next location, and where we should live, there are lots of options. I look at photos of homes for sale, and I realize the dilemma so many people are in, when I tell them that they should buy farm-fresh food. So many of you tell me, “but I can’t afford it.” And I believe you, truly, some of you just can’t afford it. You or your husband might have a low paying job, little education, lots of mouths to feed, college debt for a degree that didn’t take you anywhere in life, etc. I get it. I wonder, as I look at homes though, how many “can’t afford it” because of the home that they chose? Bear with me–please don’t give me “hate” comments. I’m not really up for that right now, k?
See, here’s the deal….If my husband gets a job that pays as well as his last one (he’s been interviewing, we will see), and we pay off our debt, we could probably get approved for a pretty cool house….I was looking at this one, or this one, or this one (which is pretty much the exact same floor plan we used to own, but so much fancier, and with a basement, and with a pretty view). We could probably get one of those homes….Would we have less debt? No. Should we? Well, it really depends on our priorities. If we bought one of those homes, our monthly budget would be so tight that we would not be able to afford:
- grass fed beef
- pastured poultry
- $10 per gallon raw milk
- a CSA with farm fresh veggies
Probably, what we should buy, if our priorities are in order, is something more like this. And there’s nothing wrong with this house. It’s just, if you compare the ones above with this one, well–you get my point, right? And if we bought a home, closer to this price range, we could afford all of that good food.
I’m not judging those of you who live in a nice home. I’m just saying, for all of us, no matter how much we’re tempted by the nicer homes (aka bigger payments), it all comes down to where our priorities are. And maybe the above houses are nowhere near what you can afford. Maybe it’s more like a difference between this and this or maybe even this. I’m simply stating that we all make choices, within our budget, and those choices impact the kind of food we can afford.
We won’t be buying one of those higher end homes. First off, my hubby likely won’t make as much as before. He was a manager at his previous job, and it looks like most companies are not hiring external candidates as managers–so he will take a step or 2 down on the career ladder. It looks like this farming “sabbatical” he took has been a sacrifice in more ways than one (more debt, less wage, lower job position). It was worth it. This experience was so worth it, and we’re both thankful we did it. Besides the probable lower wage, we aren’t choosing one of those homes because real food is a priority to us. We want to be able to afford good food every month (after we eat up all of our own pastured meat from the freezer! Which will hopefully only be gone after we’ve paid off the farm debts!!).
If you knew what you know now about real food, would you have spent so much on housing? What are your thoughts about this?
Update: God blessed us with a home that is nicer than we thought we would be able to purchase. He worked out the details, we are so thankful! We still prioritize food in our budget. We will decrease every other area of spending before we will decrease our food budget. Going to weekly farmer’s markets and buying local, farm-raised food is a HIGH priority in our life!!