Tuesday, August 14, 2012

you have nothing to lose

I think there are few things as powerful as the written word. Words can be curses and prayers, sonnets and swears, lyrics and prose. Our language is a gift, and something that stirs things inside us. Words are everything to me, and the reason I am writing you today. Folks, strap into your seat belts because we're going to make magic happen starting now.

When I wanted a farm of my own and had a few months to figure out how to pull it off—I wrote it down. I sat down in a little dirty cabin in Vermont and sketched out in letters exactly what I wanted. I wrote about the sheep and the hillside, the farmhouse and the barn. I wrote about Gibson, and horses, and the commuting distance to work. I did it because I saw it on a movie and I was desperate. Some friends leant me their copy of The Secret and writing down plans was a part of the DVD. Today I can look back at the past few years and attribute most of my manifested life to believing it is possible, thanks to that random video.

I want you to do something right now, right here. I want you to leave a comment stating what you want. And I'm not talking about a new truck or to pass your final exams. I mean the BIG PICTURE. Write down the thing that keeps you up at night, the dream that is stalking you, waiting to pounce. If you are shy do it anonymously. I don't need to know who you are and no one else does either. What matters is that you actually put words down. And when you are done, copy and paste it into a word doc and print it out and put it in your wallet or purse. Carry it with you, not like a burden but like a letter you are going to mail. Have it on your person the same way pockets are on your pants. Do it and see what happens.

You may not realize it, but taking the time to write down a dream is actually the first step in making it happen. You are doing so much more than writing. You are physically turning your thoughts into reality, and if you don't believe me check your back pocket. A real, tangible thing will be there. And while yes, it is a piece of paper it is also so much more. That paper is an action you did to work towards a goal. You build from there, little by little and suddenly the words on your paper are just your life.

When things get scary, or you feel you are losing your destination point, take out that scrap of paper like a compass and point yourself back home. If you can read it, close your eyes and picture it, you are the most powerful force on earth. If I can do this, you can do it. It worked for me and I spent the day with friends in Washington County riding horses on a weekday. I think this blog is the reason why, and not because of the workshops and books, but because every single day I am sharing my hopes and dreams with the world. That is a powerful thing, an ancient practice, and the Need Fire it creates only brings more good into my life. I am so grateful for it, and I want you to have the same. So please, write it down.

You have nothing to lose by sharing your dream. Nothing. Do it and you will be taking the first step towards making it happen. And when you are sitting on your own farm's front porch in a few years, your boss having let you telecommute and your first ever backyard broiler is roasting in the oven filling your house with a scent you thought was only reserved for heaven— you can take a sip of cold beer, reach back into your wallet, take out that faded, stained, and thin scrap of paper and know what it feels like to not only behold a dark horse, but ride it.


Blogger No Name Farm/Ranch said...

I want to wake up each morning and own it - the morning, the day, my life. I wrote it down, too Jenna, and by God you're right, it does work. I'm typing this in the kitchen of the farmhouse we built on the edge of the woods on land we spilled tears and blood over for four years. But it's not enough. I want my life's work to be this land, this space, and not spent toiling for someone else's progress. Consider this the crisp note to myself, folded into fourths, tucked into my back pocket.

August 13, 2012 at 6:41 PM  
Blogger KellyV (Kelly the Fifth) said...

Jenna - what a beautifully written essay. A keeper.

August 13, 2012 at 6:46 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

I want the chaos of life and love to fill my big house. I've had the audacity to pray for two girls to add to my family somehow. Another dog or two, a yard full to bursting with the bounty of fruit and veg that comes from hard work. My house full of friends who know they are welcome and treasured. Chickens to give eggs and meat. Rabbits maybe. Those parts that cannot work on our half a city acre I see happening through volunteer work at Wakefield and Brookwood farm. Music fills my home and I make some of it singing until my heart feels light. I also see my fiber living in the sunniest room in my house. I spin, knit, and weave as well as make rugs on a big frame.

Now, copy and paste and carry everywhere. I'll get there.

August 13, 2012 at 6:55 PM  
Blogger Cindy said...

I want to awaken every moring to the chorus of a small flock of chickens, wind whispering down the mountain,with a creek just a stone's thrown away adding its harmony. I want to know that I can provide for myself and my family on my own small patch of green. I want my evenings to be softly lit by the warm glow of lamp flame, my warmth from the hearth fire as I sit under a quilt I made myself.
Cindy Baugh

August 13, 2012 at 7:02 PM  
Anonymous Marguerite Egner said...

Closing in on 60 and my dream now is to work until 66 which is the sweet spot as far as maximizing your social security payment and being able to work on top of that and not be penalized for earning more money. It's not easy now because there seems to be an unspoken attitude out there that is cracking down on my age group. You know, the ones who work like crazy?? I'm not talkin' about the ones who are going out on maternity leave every other year nor am I talking about the ones who don't know what it means to do whatever it takes to get the job done. So that is my dream at this age. My first dream was realized when I left a marriage that was killing me and purchased my current home where I live the life I want to live without anyone questioning me. That's my first dream. Dream accomplished!

August 13, 2012 at 7:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this will sound stupid, but just once...i would love to be happy! maybe one day.

karl micheal

August 13, 2012 at 7:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want a house big enough for all of us, enough money in the bank to not be stressed all the time, a large garden, fruit trees, and be far enough away from neighbors that they can't hear your toilet flush. I want to hear the wind in the trees not traffic. I want fresh air not pollution from the local smelter.
I want to have wildlife that aren't the neighbors having a party.
I want a dog who barks when people come or animals but isn't vicious and won't bite people.

August 13, 2012 at 7:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to write music for my living. It doesn't have to be a big living. Just enough.

August 13, 2012 at 8:05 PM  
Blogger Lissa B. said...

My dream is to buy a little bit of land near my parents so my kids can have them closely. I want a little farm house (yellow with white trim) and a big covered porch that goes all the way around so I can sit out there on a rocker and watch the kids and chickens play. To that, I want chickens, I have rabbits already but I'd like to expand it a bit and a nice big veggie garden. I'd like to be able to supply my family as close to 100% as I can with goods from home. Food, entertainment and clothing all within 50 feet of the front door. Right now I'm trying to get started with what I can within that dream, but my husband's job keeps us in a tiny house with no yard in Southern California. I keep 2 fiber rabbits in the house and have a 3x6 garden bed. It's all I can do right now, where we are, but it's a start right? Until I can get my little farm house...

August 13, 2012 at 8:08 PM  
Blogger Sylvia said...

I want to own my own business. I want to see both my boys launched into decent jobs with good companions by their sides. I want my husband to find something that he enjoys so that the last third of his life is pleasurable. I want my own goat and my own cow.

August 13, 2012 at 8:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to be financially free. Not rich; just not beholden to any lender, credit-scoring agency, or government. Almost there and actively reading finance books to reach it.

August 13, 2012 at 8:18 PM  
Blogger Cathy said...

I want a farmhouse, nothing huge, but a nice old farmhouse that once had a happy family in it, where there was a lot of laughter. There is a barn nearby, big enough for a couple of horses and a pig and cow. A chicken coop, some fruit trees and enough property to give us privacy but not alienate us from our neighbors. I want my son to have a good education and a happy life.

Thank you Jenna. I'm going to carry this with me.

August 13, 2012 at 8:20 PM  
Blogger Moose Hollow Farm said...

I want to be able to help members of my family through this bad economy. I want to get better organized, clean our barn and fenced area so that I can get some more critters for our little farm. I want to create a place where family & friends feel peace & simplicity. I want them to leave their problems at the end of our driveway when they come to visit.

August 13, 2012 at 8:22 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I want to have a piece of land that is beautiful and semi secluded with animals, out buildings, critters, kids, and in a place I can walk out back of and hunt from. I want to be more involved in the local food scene (or involved period) and figure out how to make a mobile slaughter/butcher operation viable in my area.

August 13, 2012 at 8:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am already blessed to be living on 17 acres in the country that has been in my family since 1859. I have pasture, forest, a creek that runs through it and a beautiful meandering spring. I have 6 laying hens guarded by a beautiful Great Pyrenees named Sheba. I want to live and work here every day for myself. I want more animals, to farm more and to earn a living from these acres that so much blood, sweat and tears have gone into. I want to make jewelry, soaps, cheese and eventually, wine from my own grapes. I already am well on my way. I have the desire and I make my affirmation. Thanks Jenna for all your inspiration!

August 13, 2012 at 8:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To be completely debt free.
To own a small home near the ocean with a small garden that I can use as a summer home and then retire to. To have a sheltie and/or a german shepherd. To create art. To be happy in my work while I need to do it.

August 13, 2012 at 8:39 PM  
Blogger Kella B said...

I want to produce things for my family with my hands. I want to feel tired at the end of the day, not drained and mentally spent, but sore muscle and peaceful mind tired. I want to wake up early, and feel refreshed.
I want to stop selling my brain to people who don't appreciate it. I want to stop working over and above for strangers. I want to give my time back to my family, to be a partner to my husband, and a nurturing mother to my children.
I want to be proud of myself.

August 13, 2012 at 8:39 PM  
Blogger Angela Boyko said...

I want to step out of my comfort zone and make new friends to invite into my new home. I want to know more people face-to-face, not through a computer screen. I want people to call me up and invite out on adventures.

August 13, 2012 at 8:51 PM  
Blogger Rosa Veldkamp said...

I want to make the everyday beautiful. . .

August 13, 2012 at 8:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

An old white farmhouse with blue shutters and real fireplaces/woodstoves with a porch to sit on so I can see the green hills and the trees when they turn in the fall. One with a big red barn or at least a barn I can paint red. In a place where the seasons change - snow in winter, green in spring & summer and wonderful colors in fall. A place where I can afford the taxes. A community that accepts/welcomes newcomers. Enough land for sheep, chickens, hay and vegetables and one milk cow and a good water source. To be able to wake up hearing a rooster crow rather than an electronic alarm clock. To be able to sit in front of a woodstove or fireplace and spin wool from my sheep and where I can learn to knit. To know that the food I consume I grew or raised and that it was done in a humane and gentle manner. To never go back to working in the corporate world again.

August 13, 2012 at 8:57 PM  
Blogger Melina said...

I want a rustic retreat home that is round made of stone and wood that I helped build and design with Robert. I want it to be surrounded by nature, pasture, trees, pure water. I want children and a loving community to educate them and teach them. I want a good marriage where we laugh and share the food we created and have good health and lots of exercise. I want to have the free time. I want to publish my creative projects including my writing, photos and drawings. I want to use natural resources for my transportation. I want to walk or bike to work. I want to make food and grow it. I want to be debt free by the bonfire on an October night after a harvest potluck with friends and farmers.

August 13, 2012 at 9:27 PM  
Blogger Melina said...

Oops I left out one final part. I want to continue to teach and educate others with skills they can use in their life.

August 13, 2012 at 9:30 PM  
Anonymous AlteredGrace said...

Hi Jenna and Readers:

I am a follower that reads your blog daily...sometimes twice a day if you blog more than once!

My dream is to move to a large house in Tennessee. Large enough for my mom and two sisters with a room that waits for my son to come and visit. Outside is a modest farm filled with rescue animals, ducks, and chickens. I tend to the animals till I'm good and tired but the good kind of tired. The kind that makes you proud that you assisted in easing the life of a hard worn animal. After taking a break I head off to my studio where I create quilts, dolls, clothes, and holiday items for the next show I'll be selling my handmade items. Later, I head out to check on the farm and tend to what needs to be tended. After dinner I sit on the screened porch and delight in the fireflies hanging around. My cat jumps on my lap and gives me a contented mew. She is happy to be here and so am I.

August 13, 2012 at 9:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to capture everyday magic with my camera. I want to find my area of photography and turn it into a supplemental income. I want to live up to what that famous photographer said to me at a workshop.

August 13, 2012 at 10:00 PM  
Blogger daisy said...

I want to live my passion for farms, barns, gardening, kids and family while honoring my sweet boy by starting a therapeutic farm for kids on the autism spectrum. I want to hear the birds singing in the surrounding trees, pick my own veggies and know what to do with them, whether that's eating off the vine, cooking or canning them. I want to help others learn to believe in themselves by allowing their dreams to take them where they want to go. I want to inspire and be inspired on a daily basis. Thank you Jenna for all of your efforts toward helping me be all that I can be. Continued blessings...

August 13, 2012 at 10:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want a small cabin in the woods with as much land as I can get and as far away from all the people who judge me as I can possible be. I want to raise my own food and make my own clothes. I want to live simply and be surrounded by nature as I try to forget my past. I want to be free and at peace.

August 13, 2012 at 10:08 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

I want to continue to realize what a blessing I have in my farm, my husband, and my two baby boys. I want to homeschool my children and not feel like I have to explain that choice to anyone. I want to produce as much of our food as possible (about 40% now.) I want to build a community of people who help one another with their own version of the homesteading dream (we seem to be the only ones in our immediate vicinity which makes us unique and gives us lots of customers for our eggs and produce but doesn't help with sharing ideas with like-minded folks.) I want to continue to chose to live simply honoring that simple does not mean easy. Thanks for a great post!

August 13, 2012 at 10:27 PM  
Blogger Kelly Sedinger said...

I want to see a book on a shelf in a bookstore or library with my name on the spine. I'm already on the way there...I have one written (I'm editing it now) and I have another in progress. But I want it out there, I want it to be good enough for someone to want to give me money for it, and I want it to be read!

August 13, 2012 at 10:47 PM  
Blogger Talita Salles said...

I'll have a farm near a town with a lot of interesting people. I'll have some past-urban neighbors like me, but also lots of simpler folk who knows the ways of the land since immemorial times. I'll have a few german shepherds and maybe border collies for breeding, and training. I'll have a few working horses I'll also breed and train (for profit and love). At least one breton, maybe a morgan or two, but mostly mangalarga striders. I'll help organize the local cooperative of small producers, and we'll have large enough harvests between ourselves to make a marketable volume. I'll barter like crazy, and I'll help everyone to design their properties in a permacultural way. I'll produce most of what I eat, if not everything. I'll kill my own animals (at least once), or I'll stop eating their meat. I'll make my own cosmetics, or barter with someone who does. I'll have a few cows and a bull, as well as goats, chickens, ducks, capibaras, caimans, a little bit of everything. I'll always breed my animals to improve their breeds, without losing sight of their health. I'll organize workshops and help other people with setting up their farms, urban or not. I'll achieve near zero waste, and I'll help other people do it too. I'll blog.

I'll live in a small house with a large living-kitchen and an even larger porch for gatherings. I'll have many small cottages through the farm for occasional rental, and to receive my dear friends at least once a year during vacations, with all their children. I want to be around lots of children, and pass this all to them. I won't adopt 10 kids, but if I can I'll host a couple besides my own. I'll have summer courses for children and teenagers, in which they'll stay with me for a week. One week a year I'll host children from an orphanage. Whenever possible, I'll have people coming to stay with me to learn the ropes and work.

I'll reforest a part of my property with agro-forestry. I'll have a river running through it, or enough nearby that I can go for a dive anytime I want, without using a car. I might have a small bookstore in town, or by the road side, where I'll also sell wholefoods, host gatherings, meet people. But at first, I'll work a day job in the local townhall, as a urban or landscape designer.

I'll have a partner (hopefully still Alex), who might work outside or not, whom I'll be able to hug at night when things seem rough, who'll hopefully love all that as I do, but who can also just be looking for a steady life and let me do my thing. My mother and father might be nearby, or even living in the same property, in their own house. I won't be too far from São Paulo so my friends and siblings will be able to visit at least once a year.

Thanks, Jenna. Whenever I speak this out loud, someone comes saying I want too much, I'll never get there, start with the small things first. Of course I start with the small things. But writing it down... it just doesn't seem so much after all. It suddenly seems possible. I'll just add another line:

I'll visit Jenna at Cold Antler Farm, give her a big hug, help her build something that needs building, pat Merlin, swim in the battenkill, loose an arrow, and thank her so much for all the hope and determination she gives me every day.

August 13, 2012 at 10:52 PM  
Blogger Talita Salles said...

Also, things have started moving forward since I started looking forward: we have just started a community vegetable garden a couple of blocks from where I live.

(but this comment is actually to activate the e-mal follow up for comments on this thread)

August 13, 2012 at 10:56 PM  
Blogger Christee said...

I want to own and operate my own little cafe that serves only pastries and coffee and has a farmers market attached with fruits and veggies that I grew. I want my children to grow up knowing where their food came from. I want to ride my future horse at a full gallop across a pasture. I want to have a small herd of fine milk goats that I make different cheese from. I want to sit on the front porch of oury home with my husband and watch the sunset. I want this home to be in the Pines of the White Mountains of Arizona.

I could go on and on but I have drawn a little picture of how I see my little farm and now I can print this and attach it to the back.

I currently have 9 goats but only 1is in milk and I learned how to make cheese with her milk. I also have 20 chickens which I use and sell their eggs. I will have the rest in steps.

Jenna, I have taken many ideas and things that you do and intergrated them into my life as well. My late Mom lent me your "Made from Scratch" book while we were on a roadtrip and I have been hooked ever since. She enjoyed your work and had aspirations to do some of the things that you do but since she passed away I have taken her ideas and dreams and woven them into my story now. So here I go!!!

Many thanks and much love to you for daring to stick it all out there!


August 13, 2012 at 10:58 PM  
Blogger Glyndalyn said...

Living the dream in our rural tiny hamlet in Middle TN.

Enjoyed reading the comments more than any others.

August 13, 2012 at 11:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to be financially free, a patient mother with my special needs son and I want everyone who comes to my home to feel it is theirs.
Oh ya, and I want the ranch I'm trying to buy and I want to contribute to the worlds need for ethically raised food.

August 13, 2012 at 11:13 PM  
Blogger Mist said...

Above all I want home. I want community. I want to give my kids the kind of childhood that is remembered with so much fondness that it almost makes their hearts hurt. I want piano playing at Christmas, langorous swims in the creek/pond/lake/river over the summers, loads of daffodils in the spring, and a sprawling pumpkin patch in the fall. Walks in the woods with a little foraging thrown in for good measure. Tending my garden. Chickens. Geese. Peafoul. Rabbits. Bees. Maybe even goats. And kitties too. Mushrooms. I want to live lightly on the earth without driving my husband crazy. I want to cook meals filled with so much love and patience that they couldn't possibly taste bad, served at a table with cloth napkins. I want to use my talent for staying deadly calm in emergencies for... something.

I want to look back and not feel that my life was one long series of compromises.

August 13, 2012 at 11:16 PM  
Blogger Holly said...

I want to plan,plant, and harvest most of the food we consume. I want to have dairy goats, more chickens, and some pigs. I want to bring the farm to life again. To be independent of fossil resources. How great to only have property taxes and insurance as "bills", due to self-sufficiency. I want to have time to read as well as do. I used to want the "have it want all American Dream", now I desire the simple, handmade lifestyle.

August 13, 2012 at 11:20 PM  
Blogger Sue said...

I want to walk out my back door and head to work taking care of my Alpaca flock, chickens for eggs, meat,and bug patrol, heritage turkeys, worms, bees, and maybe goats for meat, dairy, or fiber. I want to have guarding Llamas and dogs. I want to have sound housing for all the animals, and eventually automatic watering stations. I want awesome fences.

I want a large clothesline to hang my freshly washed clothes and a first floor laundry. I want my home to be built in this century, so I don't have to wonder about asbestos, lead paint, mold, and so it is energy efficient and is passive solar. I want to use solar and wind power, as well as to be tied to the grid so I can earn money by selling my extra energy. I want clean well water.

I want my daughter to grow up in this home and to be able to know the security I never did. I want to grow organic heirloom gardens, and teach her all that I know. I want to donate a part of my harvest every year to food shelters, because I know what it is like to go without and need a helping hand.
I want to be able to host family and friend gatherings.

I want our debt to be nonexistant, and to always have our income growing and providing us with all that we need, which includes a healthy savings account so we can retire one day in the distant future.

I can smell the fresh cut hay. I can smell the earthiness of our land improving year after year. I can see our gardens; flowers, herbs, vegetables, fruits, medicinal, mushrooms, brambles, fruit trees, and maybe even some nut trees.

I want part of our land to be left wild. The wildlife need a place to call home too. I would also love to have marsh land, because marshes are one of the Earth's filters and they need protection.

I would love to have another child.

August 13, 2012 at 11:24 PM  
Anonymous Sarah said...

I was single, approaching forty. I wanted a baby. I did what you did. I started a blog. I wrote about it. My daughter was born June 14th. Her name is Violet. She is pure joy.

August 13, 2012 at 11:35 PM  
Blogger Black Cat Gardening said...

I want a small farm in Vermont where I can raise daylilies and have chickens, ducks, and geese.

August 14, 2012 at 12:43 AM  
Blogger Hannah said...

I want to have my own self-sustaining, horse powered farm where I can become financially independent and not have to worry about basing my day to day activities around someone else's schedule. I want to be able to raise my kids right and to teach them the importance of treating the earth right. I want to be able to grow old, with the man I love, in my dream (farm)house in the country. And lastly, I'd like to be able to educate others and make a difference in the lives of other people.

Hannah Parin

August 14, 2012 at 12:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love that your doing this! I started writing short term an long term goals about 6 years ago. I have the Boarding Kennel I wanted, it's almost completed and soon I will be self employed making money for myself. I have 24 acres that my grandparents sold to me. My remaining list includes build a small house ASAP, hopefully within the year! Put up better fences. Build a barn. Get the business up and going, hopefully make enough so we can start a second business so my husband doesn't have to stay at his job forever. Build a few cabins on our property to rent out for extra income, especially like to have that in our old age. Maybe buy a store in Gettysburg to sell photographs and other artwork/handmade items. Adopt a child or two from Haiti or Ethiopia in the next 10 years. Those are the biggies! Erin in PA

August 14, 2012 at 1:04 AM  
Blogger Rachel Marie said...

Jenna, I know things happen for a reason, good or bad they make us who we are and as long as we are learning from this life I think we are on the right path. I have been reading (most) of your blog for a few years, and when you posted before about making it happen I tried. We lived in a mobile home in the middle of a big city at the time and because of your post I started thinking it was possible. We assumed we could not get a home for our family. But, now I am sitting upstairs in our new house on the edge of a small town surrounded by farmland. I watch wild rabbits outside my kitchen window when I am making our morning coffee, and I am planning my veggie garden and chicken coop.If we are patient and keep an open heart it all will come to us when the time is right. You are inspiring, thank-you

August 14, 2012 at 2:04 AM  
Blogger Bovey Belle said...

I am very fortunate, as I have been able to live my dream - having a big old farmhouse with land and outbuildings, enough room for extended family and horses, and poultry, and giving our children freedom and animals around them. Managing without working 9 til 5 (though it was hard) and being here for my husband and family always. But in what, essentially, is a foreign country . . .

Now it is time for us "oldies" to move on to the next stage of our life, and for someone else to fall in love with our house and valley as we did, and to take custody. Time for us to downsize to a cottage with a beautiful garden and an orchard and a few free range hens, back in the West Country, and closer to friends and family. To be able to learn a new craft without having to make 100 mile round trip. To be able to have a day out on Dartmoor without packing for a weekend away. To phone a friend and say come on over for coffee and they arrive the same morning. Not to worry that if we don't sell inside 3 years, we have to go for Equity Release.

To have our children closer to us so we can support them when life goes pear-shaped.

To go home.

August 14, 2012 at 2:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A logcabin with enough space for my family and for my work. An orchard with appletrees and all kinds of berries to make vinegars, a veggie garden filled with yummy stuff. To be able to provide for my family with my (art)work. And feel accepted for the person I am.

This is what I want.

August 14, 2012 at 2:50 AM  
Anonymous donna frome greeneville tn said...

i want to be an herb and flower farmer....

August 14, 2012 at 4:48 AM  
Blogger Maria said...

I want to be a writer

August 14, 2012 at 5:00 AM  
OpenID cathmiller said...

It does work, we wrote our goals out in 2008. Our plan was through visioning a perfect day then setting dates to make it measurable.

My partner Brad and I wake at 6.30am in our passive solar designed home overlooking our 40 acre property in Margaret River wine Region. Brad throws his new fibre-glass baoard into the back of the 4WD and nips down to Guillotines Break for a surf. I wander over to the stables, give the boys a cuddle and let them out for the day and pick up the boxes. At 9.30I turn on the computer, check emails and catch up with the news. Brad brings some croissants back for brekky then he heads off at 11am to do his 4 hours at his P/T job. I organise a community forum on water issues and finish the newsletter. At 12.30 I do some yoga before lunch then back for a couple of hours of work. At 4 I go for a ride and check the property then Brad and I do a bit of work around the property. After putting the boys in and feeding them, I shower and put on my Madame Abla costume to teach the first of my 2 dance classes in the studio. At 8 Brad and I watch a show before heading to bed for an “early” night.

21st August 2008 - we will have bought land (exactly right)
21st August 2009 - we will have sold our business and moved to property (December actually)
21st August 2010 - building house - (started house - got plans from builder on 17th sept)
21st August 2011 - sell city apartment - (December 2011 actually)
21st August 2012 - retired, debt free and still dancing (won’t be quite debt free, but will be well on the way - recruitment ads for my replacement closed yesterday)

The only things that are different 5 years on is that I thought the community forum would be a water conference I organised through my job, but reading this now, I realise it is the community action on protecting the water from the threat of coal mines/coal seam gas!! which we have just won.

Brad is currently getting his new board shaped for him. And even better than the dream, the property is 85 acres and Brad brings back chocolate croissants!

The studio is a work in progress - the roof is there.

August 14, 2012 at 5:24 AM  
Blogger RamblinHome said...

The power of the spoken word is undeniable. If you have a chance, google the works of Florence Scovell Shinn. There is a sight that has all her writings. "Your Word is Your Wand" is fantastic! Her first stuff was written in the 1920's and I think you would really gain a lot from her. She is my go-to when I need an affirmation refresher!

My dream is to be financially able to work from home, on creative endeavors that I enjoy. To financially be able to have my small farm and time to work it the way I want it. I wish for these things to come to me unconditionally, in divine ways under grace.

Thank you again, Jenna, for posting positive things!

August 14, 2012 at 6:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want a red barn with chickens, sheep and a pony - maybe even a milk goat. A large vegetable garden filled with enough that it'll feed me through the winter. To bake bread and homemade food in a large country kitchen. An orchard with apples, peaches, and plums. And neighbors who are farmers or into homesteading so we can support each other. And a cozy home - either a cabin or an old farmhouse - with a fireplace and woodburning stove that has character of old wood.


August 14, 2012 at 7:23 AM  
Anonymous Victoria said...

I want an old farmhouse on rolling mixed woodland and fields, with sight of hayfields. I want it to be full of books and art and artifacts from my travels (and my family's), full of laughter and love and generous hospitality. I want my family around me. I want there to be grand old trees outside and marvellous gardens that I have made myself. I want outbuildings. I want chickens and ducks and geese and a cow whose milk I make into cheese, and a horse to ride. There will be several large dogs, an Irish wolfhound and a black lab and maybe also a borzoi.

I want to be close to my friends and family so they can drop by when they want, and there always to be room at my table and my hearth. I want to produce most of my own food, with enough to share, and I want to have enough to pay the bills through my writing. Most of all, I want my books published and read and, I hope, loved. I want to give back to the world some of the things I have learned through words, and make the earth a little better a place than it was when I came.

August 14, 2012 at 7:49 AM  
Blogger Holly said...

Left my comments earlier on blog but this thought keeps nagging at me, we have our dream in writing and we are all moving forward on steps to realize it BUT...couldn't we all work together to reach our goals. Sounds to me like quite a few of us have skills to barter, be it fiber, fabric,debt reduction,or farm knowledge. Wouldn't it be cool to all pitch together in a CAFer's day to reach out to a blogger in your area and help them realize their dream, or help with a step to the dream?

I'll start: Hi, I'm Holly from Illinois. Currently live in Ottawa, IL but have a farm in Donovan, IL that I am working on, I am willing to travel in Illinois, to southern Wisconsin, and western Indiana, so who needs my help? Skilled in vegetables, mowing, bush trimming, debt counseling, and general hard physical work! Reach me at farmingal48@gmail.com

August 14, 2012 at 7:58 AM  
Blogger J.D. said...

I want to be a working writer who lives in a small cabin with gardens, a sweet dog, chickens, and sheep all around me. I want to walk out my front door to see the ocean and have the mountains at my back.

I want to get up in the morning, do my chores, settle down to write, and have it begin all over again the next day.

I want enough cash to call me secure and enough yarn to keep me warm.

I want to be there for people who need me.

I want to write for myself. Too many years have been wasted writing for others.

I want the peace and contentment of a warm hearth on a snowy day and a soft breeze to cool me against the heat.

I want to live in world where people come first, profit second. Where each human encounter reminds me of the precious soul within and the love which knows no bounds.

I want to keep my mother safe and secure for the remainder of her days and help her through her grief now that my father has passed.

I want to be the port in a storm where people can learn and prepare for emergency.

I want to uphold myself, while sustaining the earth through gentle living.

And, someday, I'd like to thank Jenna Wogginrich for teaching me to think BIG!

August 14, 2012 at 8:16 AM  
Blogger Kess said...

Newly retired, I now want to find a cause that benefits all living beings that I can commit my time and energy to. I recently fulfilled another dream by selling my house and downsizing my possessions so I can live in a 400sq ft motorhome. I want to travel around the country and spend time in places I love. Finding a companion who shares my goals would be nice but not a necessity. Writing has always been an aspiration that I would like to expand beyond journaling. Enjoying each moment with full consciousness is the ultimate goal.

August 14, 2012 at 8:22 AM  
Blogger Diana said...

I want....to know what I want....torn between a career I love and am passionate about and developing my own..something...maybe my family's pasture land to something productive and beautiful that won't get rezoned or a farm to able business. Someday I'll figure it out.

August 14, 2012 at 8:29 AM  
Blogger Heather Knight said...

My dream is to have more property a small sustainable home, barn, workshop for my husband, my daughters horse, my horse, chickens, and my garden. On the property I see a driveway that leads in three directions. One to my house and the other two to my two kids houses. I really want to stay connected to my kids and believe that family is something that we are losing. All my debt is gone and I feel secure and safe in my job. I can see my horse that I have been dreaming of for years now and I know he is there just wonder when he will show up.

August 14, 2012 at 8:49 AM  
Blogger Heather Knight said...

I too would like to developing my own job, I am passionate about my current position but I answer to someone and feel very vulnerable. I will erase all my debt, I will live on property with fields and a small sustainable home with wood heat, barn and workshop for my husband. I will have my horse, my daughters horse, dogs, cats, chickens. I dream of a rode that goes in three directions - to my daughters home and one to my sons home- all on the same piece. I see my horse in my minds eye and wonder when he will show.

August 14, 2012 at 8:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to be healthy again. I know what healthy feels like and nerve damage in my spine isn't it.
I want to work on my old motorhome myself (like I used to) and my older car (like I love to) and ride my motorcycle.
I want to be able to walk well enough that I can watch my daughter's marching band and see my son graduate from college.
I want to travel again.

August 14, 2012 at 8:56 AM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Reading these makes me so happy, so many people don't do this, share their desires and hope. We're told to keep it quiet. I wish you all nothing but happiness, joy, and the means to acquire happiness and joy.

August 14, 2012 at 8:59 AM  
Anonymous Paula Josa-Jones said...

thank you for this beautiful invitation, Jenna!
I want to sell my current home and move into one that feels right-sized for our work and our lives together, a place that has splendid views,some land - a place where I can bring my horses home when they retire. I want to feel financially free, light and abundant. I want to spread my work with horses and humans far and wide, to publish my book, to help people find their own creative and playful selves through movement and animals. I want to spend at least 6 weeks a year by the sea. I want to engage, connect and love everywhere, every moment.

August 14, 2012 at 9:09 AM  
Blogger Erin said...

This made me cry. I'm in the same boat and couldn't have written it better. Good luck Kella. I hope we both find what we are looking for.

August 14, 2012 at 9:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My dream is a piece of land. Not just to have and sit in the house like I see most around here do, but land to use. Fertile land, with irrigation, a big garden, and a fruit orchard complete with a few hives. With a barn for the sheep and horses, with a coop for the chickens and turkeys. Oh, and a rabbitry would be lovely. Every year I get closer, I've even started my own business just to try to make it happen. I have four chickens on my 10th of an acre, five angora rabbits, and on my mom's acre I have six turkeys and will be adding two sheep along with my big sorrel gelding. All I ask for is a place that I can have all of them together, and that it doesn't require me to use fossil fuels to get to them. Most of all, I just want to go out on the porch at night and hear them all munching on pasture, or cooing softly at the roost, and know that everyone is safe.

August 14, 2012 at 9:26 AM  
Blogger Cindy said...

I want to go home, to live near family, surrounded by their love. Thank you.

August 14, 2012 at 9:54 AM  
Blogger 2houndnight said...

My "Big Picture" Dream
My dream is freedom, to have my time be my own, to own my days and my nights and do with them whatever I choose....
My dream is to have my husband enjoy this same luxury and my son to learn how to make dreams happen so that he too will understand what true freedom is....
There are many tiny dreams that add up to the "Big Picture" dream. They are trees in my orchard, the seedlings in my garden, the chickens in my coop, the small boy who calls me "Mommy". I plant them one by one, nurture them with all I've got and dream big dreams for them....

August 14, 2012 at 10:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to make better use of the land/resorces I have. I want 2 sweet-natured dairy cows, a pig for slaughter. I want to be supportive of my elderly family members as they age. And I want to hold my grandchildren in my arms. (As of now unborn).

August 14, 2012 at 10:06 AM  
Blogger Plant City Homestead said...

I am very happy with my life, but I want a man to share it with me.

August 14, 2012 at 10:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have dreams like this, too, but right now I just want to be mentally and physically healthy enough to see beyond the immediate. I want my wife to come home from a long absence, I want the cloud of anxiety to lift, and I want to dream big again.

August 14, 2012 at 10:31 AM  
Blogger redhorse said...

I'm very blessed, and often forget it. I don't have to work at a job anymore, I have the most beautiful, sweetest (half broke) gelding I've ever owned and I can spend all day with him if I want to. I have a wonderful garden that has done well in spite of a weird growing season. I guess what I want now is to stay healthy and active, and to feel I'm making a contribution to someone.

August 14, 2012 at 10:33 AM  
Blogger redhorse said...

Anon, you are breaking my heart, I hope your dreams come true. Anxiety and poor health are terrible things to live with, especially alone.

Prayers and love.

August 14, 2012 at 10:36 AM  
Anonymous gothicmuse said...

I dream of many things, but the one thing that keeps coming up is to create works of art. It would be nice if someone wanted to buy them, but mostly I just have this itch I want to scratch.

1st step in progress, I have signed up for a painting class starting in October.

August 14, 2012 at 10:41 AM  
Blogger J.D. said...

Anon: I wish you all that and more!

May your dreams of health be fulfilled and you live in joy!

August 14, 2012 at 10:55 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

I want to be able to spend more time at home on my farm Hooves and Hounds, Maine tending to who and what I love. I am tierd and feel like everything is half done.

August 14, 2012 at 11:03 AM  
Blogger Carol said...

I am thankful for the lovely home and ground we own which we worked so hard to get. I want to have a small vacation/retirement home on a lake. I want to be able to take my kayak out at dawn and explore the lake and watch the sun rise. I want to retire with my husband by my side and my children to be close by and to visit often (hopefully with grandchildren someday soon). I want good health for all of us. I want my children to be able to have attain all they dream of.

August 14, 2012 at 11:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want people to know my name, who I really am. Not John's wife, not Bill's mother, not Peter's daughter. I want to become the person I should have become when I was 22 and gave everything up to become a wife and mother and slowly forgot how to take care of myself. I let tragedy and disease turn me into a shadow of myself and I slowly disappeared. From this day forward, I am BACK!!!!

August 14, 2012 at 11:39 AM  
Blogger BJ Gingles said...

I'm with Holly. I live in Shreveport, LA and will travel up to 30 miles to help out. I garden, can give debt counseling, bake (teach baking), can, dehydrate and have a strong back to help out with chores. I absolutely adore harvesting fruit and vegetables (shoulda been a share-cropper) so if you need some help there I will be glad to help. You can contact me at bjgingles@gmail.com

August 14, 2012 at 11:39 AM  
Blogger Pam White said...

I want to express my love every day because I feel so free which means I am not worrying
I want to look across the sky and see my heart
Wild and loose and afraid of nothing
giving getting spending are concepts as I do what pleases me and brings joy to all Beings around

August 14, 2012 at 11:40 AM  
Blogger Erin said...

Our dream is to own our own land and watch our children grow up on it - filled with nature, and homegrown veggies, eggs, and chicken. We now work for ourselves, so the first dream is accomplished! Now for that house in the woods, with a meadow out front and a creek in back... a porch with a swing, and the only light at night coming from the moon and stars, not the orange street lights that keep our apt lit 24/7. To be able to send my children out the back door to race around in the yard, and not have to load them into a car and drive 20 minutes to the nearest grassy park.
That is our dream... thanks, Jenna! :)

August 14, 2012 at 11:57 AM  
OpenID eagleandjournal said...

I want my life to make sense again; to feel like I've got a purpose. I haven't had a paycheck in four years; I've completed my PhD, and I can't get a job at McDonalds.

So this is what I want. I want to be back teaching in the college classroom. I want to get my work published and recognized.

I want to live on a small farm; nothing massive and too large to work, but 100, maybe 120 acres. I want a white four-square style house, something old with personality. I want it to have a staircase that my children come running down on Christmas morning. I want a garden that provides most of my families vegetable needs in season, plus enough to can and set aside. I want a root cellar or cold room in my basement to keep my food that I've grown in.

I want a wood lot, acres in size, to provide my fuel and my refuge. I want to hunt deer and turkey in the fall there. I want to wander there to refresh my soul.

I want a small flock of chickens for meat and eggs and life in my yard. I want beef cattle, to sell and to fill my freezer. I want Berkshire hogs feeding in the lot.

I want a team of horses, their leather lines in my hands, pulling the plow through my fields, nickering in the cool of a May afternoon. I want to use them to cut and put up hay, to haul a wagon as I cut corn, and to pull a sleigh on a winter's night.

I want a field of pumpkins, bringing a riot of fall smiles and laughing children, the greatest harvest of all.

I want a Thanksgiving table with the fruit of my labor, crowned with a beautiful turkey whose face and personality I have known.

I want to know hard work, and the joy that it can bring to a soul.

And I want to know how to begin the path toward all this.

August 14, 2012 at 12:07 PM  
OpenID eagleandjournal said...

And Jenna, I want to thank you. I've lived my life through your blog and your books. I have walked through Veryork and Montana with you, and known your struggles and triumphs and fears through your honest, beautiful writing. I have allowed my fears and my foibles to cripple my life, but you have given me hope that it can be done. So thank you. Thank you from a terrified soul, saving a candle against the dark, not realizing that the greatest adventure begins when you let the flame go out and grasp out into the new world that comes with a new perspective. Maybe some day I'll be able to attend a workshop and thank you in person, or send you something I've raised and pickled through your inspiration.

August 14, 2012 at 12:12 PM  
Anonymous MelissaH said...

To have a meaningful life on a few acres of land with my husband,daughter and dog. And a few more citters to the mix of things. To make sure my daughter life is always filled with joy and that my husband is able to find his lifes work. That he will find his joy in it,that he finds with his little family. That I truly find a my calling in what I love doing. Be it photography,work with dogs,owning a bookstore,or perhaps it can be all that and more! Here's to a joyful life!!

August 14, 2012 at 12:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to move to our 2nd home that we bought in Salem, NY (currently live in Southern California). I want to find a job there that I can enjoy until I retire (which is not far off). I want to have animals and gardens and sit in my rocker on the deck and just look at the Green Mountains of Vermont. I want my husband to not have to work so hard and enjoy our little spot in NY that we like to call Brigadoon our little secret garden. It will happen.

August 14, 2012 at 12:21 PM  
Blogger farmhousewife said...

~a home-centered life - work, play, rest

~to work with horses and children daily

~to be off-grid

~debt free

~able to handle conflict of any kind with grace, tact, and by being proactive

~living in the present, always

August 14, 2012 at 12:31 PM  
Blogger Mary Schroeder said...

I want a farm.
Something sustainable and productive.
I want horses to help power it.
I want to be able to live off of what it produces.
I will have this with my husband, and we will be content and happy.
I have a blog tracking my progress just like you Jenna. You inspired me to start one.
Thank You.

August 14, 2012 at 12:31 PM  
Blogger MKandtheforce said...

I want my own homestead, right here in Maine. I want chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese, bees, rabbits, sheep, a goat or two, some pigs, a milk cow, a steer or two, and a horse of my own. I want a lush garden and bushes full of berries and maybe even some apple trees. I want to grow my own wheat so I can make bread that was fully formed by me. I want to not have to worry about money. I'd love to be able to trade my own goods for seafood, or for the things I can't make myself. I want to raise children somewhere where they can stretch their legs and play in the grass, like I did as a kid. I want to publish my novel and make a living as a writer.

Above all, I want is a small, comfortable life, not a big, luxurious one.

August 14, 2012 at 12:33 PM  
Blogger Debi said...

Thank you for reminding me about The Secret. I actually own the dvd, but haven't watched it in a long time. I will today though.

I spent so much time doing what I was told I should be doing, that I now have a list of desires that seem, at times, endless.

First, and always, I desire health for our family...without that everything else would be hard to accomplish, or enjoy. Second only to health is our goal to get out of debt, sell our house, buy an RV, and move to Northern Idaho. In between states we'll roadschool our kids, and spending a few months seeing the western half of the country. Then we'll sette down and start our own little farm, nestled in the mountains.

August 14, 2012 at 12:35 PM  
Anonymous Heather Meyer Boothby said...

What I want first of all is to live in the present. I have ingrained DNA in me that seems to constantly tell me to rehash, so slowly but surely I want to transition fully to the present. I have three children and for them I have a dream of being a provider. I want to be able to help them spiritually and financially when they need it, and that requires me making unselfish decisions. I want to be educated. I recently finished my bachelors and that was a huge manifestation for me, albeit I'm swamped in student loans - but I want more, I want my master's degree and I want to be a librarian and spend my days helping people find the knowledge they seek. And I want love, lots of it, relationships that are full of understanding and patience, accepting and not judging. oh yeah eventually I want another cat to sit on my lap, but the beagle will do for now, and I want beautiful views out of my windows and lots of air blowing all around cleaning the dust out for me. I want beauty in all forms to be the point and the goal in life!! Success to everyone, yay dreams!!!

August 14, 2012 at 12:37 PM  
Blogger Rachel Olson said...

We want to wake up every morning on our beautiful acreage, tend to the chickens, the goats, the cow. Gather eggs and milk goats and cows. Make cheese and soaps. Smell the fresh air, watch our children run freely on the open field with their imaginations wild and free. I want to look over and see my hubby playing his banjo on the porch while I gather produce from the garden. I want to see the joy on my children's faces when they milk their first goat they've been dreaming about. I want a worn fence to be my cubicle & my outbuilding to be my office. I want this barnheart-ache to stop hurting and turn into reality :)

August 14, 2012 at 12:40 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

August 14, 2012 at 12:52 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

When the time is right, I want a family. I'd like to have some children and I hope to have tempered my impatience with kindness so as to keep from damaging their spirit. I want to create a world around me that makes any and all things feel possible. I want to be in better health and to look at myself in the mirror and see a beautiful, capable, able-bodied person. I want hard work to feel as natural as breathing. I want to build what I need, whenever need arises. I want to learn to drive a tractor. I want access to enough land to grow staples like oats, wheat and corn. I dream of two scottish highland oxen to plow and pull and never having to bother learning to drive a tractor. And what I'd like as soon as possible is a greasy black wood stove for my new home so we can start burning down the piles of wood all over this damned farm!

August 14, 2012 at 12:53 PM  
Blogger Stacie said...

I wanted to take a while to think about this before I posted anything. I do have a big vision, but sometimes it's hard to translate. I want to live on a farm in the woods where the forest meets the ocean. I want to feel satisfied with my day's work and tangibly know that my work is helping me and the world and my neighbors. I want fiber animals and companion animals and maybe meat animals, and I want a garden (that I don't kill). I want to make my own food and make my own clothes and make my own power, and I want to have people over to visit and generally, I want to take every day and wring it of its goodness and happiness and hard work and beauty.

August 14, 2012 at 1:30 PM  
Anonymous Alex Leavens said...

I appreciate the reminder to stay on purpose. Taking action is so simple when we surrender to our purpose and stay in the present moment. For me it's being the best woodsman I can be, having a woodlot, and sharing survival skills with as many people as possible.

August 14, 2012 at 1:37 PM  
Blogger Kimberlee said...

I want to redefine success to be the act of living joyfully - the journey, not the destination.

August 14, 2012 at 1:41 PM  
Blogger Kimberlee said...

I want to redefine success to be the act of living joyfully - the journey, not the destination.

August 14, 2012 at 1:42 PM  
Blogger Kimberlee said...

I want to redefine success to be the act of living joyfully - the journey, not the destination.

August 14, 2012 at 1:43 PM  
Blogger imjoyous said...

Jenna- this is a beautiful idea and overwhelmingly wonderful to be a part of:

I dream of an old house of wood and stone and brick. Of full canning jars in a pantry. Of an outdoor brick oven for the summer and a woodstove for the winter. A flock of hens and a rooster. Two or three dairy goats. Towering old trees. A vegetable garden. An herb garden. A shaded porch. A space to let my sweet girl roam within sight.

I drea of a room lit by the sun where I can sew. With shelves and a table to organize and work. A studio space to focus and create and think and write on my own. And that somehow all of this can produce an income.

I dream of my husband being happy and content. To have formed a life where he doesn't fall in and out of depression and doesn't feel useless. Where he can earn sufficient money doing the things he loves and sharing his enthusiasm with people who also care.

I dream of being halfway between our families. To be an active part of that membership and helping where needed.

I dream of being a healthy, beautiful size and to live without a knot of fear ever-present in my belly. And I dream of drinking a cup of tea slowly, daily.

August 14, 2012 at 1:57 PM  
Blogger christine said...

I want a small shop to sell my work and a nice older man to share my life with.

August 14, 2012 at 2:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was thinking of how I want our farm to be a showplace - how I want my home to be perfectly well-ordered - How I want to be self-sustaining with no money worries - and then I thought some more.

What I REALLY want is a change of heart. I want to think less of myself and more of how I can serve others. I want to lay up treasure in human heart and not in the bank. I want to be entirely used up when I die.

I'll pray for this every day. Those of you out there who pray, I humbly ask you to lift up one for me.

Thanks for this opportunity, Jenna.

August 14, 2012 at 2:19 PM  
Blogger seagoddess said...

Where's Jasper been? He doing okay, too?

My dreams? To write a book; I've had the title since I was 16 years old and just the other day I thought it might be time - that I've come full circle so to speak, which is what I've been waiting for for a long time.

To own a place where dogs can be free from harm.

August 14, 2012 at 2:31 PM  
Blogger J.D. said...

Heh Heh, Jenna: Wait until the neighbors see the winter wheat growing in the front yard!

Just one more step toward the dream.

August 14, 2012 at 2:48 PM  
Anonymous ansley said...

I want a house on at least 5 acres, two horses, to be debt-free, off the grid and as self-sustainable as possible. I want to write a book and have it published. I want my daughter to grow up to be an intelligent, creative, independent, free thinking woman.

August 14, 2012 at 2:58 PM  
Anonymous rae someday said...

I want the guts, energy and talent to write a fictional memoir full of honesty and wisdom.

August 14, 2012 at 3:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want a comfortable house for my husband and our daughter. I want some land, enough to garden on. I want healthy pets and a healthy family. I want to be able to work from home, or else have a job that allows me a lot of time with my family. I want to be able to afford health care and to have enough money left over for savings. I want to write books and articles. I want to have fun and enjoy my life and be able to travel. I want strong friendships and a strong marriage. I want to feel like my life matters.

August 14, 2012 at 3:11 PM  
Blogger Tiffrz-N-Kidz said...

All my life my Dad has told me about his summers spent visiting Uncle Joe's farm. Where the chickens pecked through the horse poop and no animals needed artificial de-wormers because Uncle Joe knew how to manage the farm so all the animals stayed healthy. Where my dad could run around barefoot and helped gather vegetables, and drank milk from a cow, not a grocery store. It's my favorite story. I want to be Uncle Joe.

August 14, 2012 at 3:31 PM  
Blogger Triple K Farm said...

I want more followers to my blog http://triplekfarm.blogspot.com/ (Jenna's blog is an inspiration). I want my own farm with a full CSA, farm store, petting farm, pick your own pumpkins just to name a few of my thoughts. A place geared for kids & family fun while learning about where their food comes from.Oh...and I want this to be full time employment for myself & my husband.

August 14, 2012 at 3:34 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

I want to write books. I to have them published. I want to write them, one after another, until I have nothing else to say or until I die, whichever comes first. I want to write while my children are at school, and garden with them when they come home, and bake bread and cookies for my husband. I want to run every day until the strides steal my breath.

Reading that messy paragraph would never lead anyone to think that I could create a novel that someone would actually want. But that mess is straight from the heart.

August 14, 2012 at 3:48 PM  
Anonymous Erika said...

I want to expand! Expand to the point that flocks and herds of livestock roam a large piece of land. Expand into an online shop and workshops on the farm. I started pursuing my dreams (facebook.come/SweetwoodFarm) after reading Made From Scratch and am so thankful that you share your story here! Thank you, Jenna!

August 14, 2012 at 4:19 PM  
Blogger Melina said...

Love and prayers to you. What an amazing insight.

August 14, 2012 at 5:03 PM  
Blogger Jennifer Montero said...

I've helped so many babies be born on the farm. What I want is the chance, the experience, of giving birth to a baby of my own.

I have never said that in public before. Maybe writing it down and owning it in words will make it happen.

August 14, 2012 at 5:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to be healthy enough so I can wake up thinking of the things I will be able to do today. I want to be able to work again, either teaching or making art, and I want to make enough money so my kids can continue on in their schools. I want to keep remembering that I am loved and that I love. I want my parents to understand what love and kindness look like so I can have a relationship with them again. I want to know my purpose in this life.

Well, that felt good to write down!

August 14, 2012 at 5:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to LIVE in TODAY... and forget/forgive things from the past

August 14, 2012 at 5:54 PM  
Blogger Brenda said...

Reading everyone else's dreams makes me realize how lucky I am to already have most of it. I live on acreage, on the prairie, have chickens, a woodstove in the house, a clay oven for bread-baking (built by me 2 yrs. ago)in the backyard, fruit trees, a vegetable garden and my own canned goods in the pantry, and my own homemade soap by the kitchen sink. I'm pooped. This dream fulfillment stuff takes a LOT of energy and hard work. My dream is to spend the next 25 years, or however long I still have (I'm 59), in a house that isn't so big and hard to take care of. One that has a beamed ceiling in the living/family/great room, and hickory or cherry wood cabinets in the kitchen, with a separate large pantry. My forever dream is to have a nice log home on some timbered acreage. My husband will never leave the farm his great-grandfather established, so next best is remodeling this old house. I wish good health for my young adult son who will be needing a heart transplant in the next year or two, and I hope he and his wife bless me with grandchildren someday. I'm quite happy with simple things.

August 14, 2012 at 6:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've seen The Secret, too. In fact, a week after watching it (and praying for some direction in my life), I found your blog. And it's been very inspirational; I've changed more this year (since that first perusal in February) than I have in the last ten. I've often wondered if you had read or seen The Secret because so much of what you say is similar to the ideas presented in the philosophy...

I do have a question, though, if it's not too personal. When you wrote down what you wanted, did you write "I want..." or did you write "I have..." (and fill in the blank with dreams)? Even though I have faith in the idea, I have a really hard time putting my wants into words and, as someone who's been successful with it, I just wonder how you approached it? Was it a numbered list? Or your ideal future written out as a story? Or...?

August 14, 2012 at 6:54 PM  
Blogger TwoBlueHeelers said...

I have a dream to travel to Paris and see the Louvre... to look down from the Eiffel Tower onto the City of Light... to walk through the rolling countryside and think about my ancestors who came from there... to watch the sun rise over fields that van Gogh might have painted. I'd love to bring my kit and paint plein air by the side of a French road. I, too, come from a family that had far too much negativity... "We can't afford to fly," my father's blunt declaration: "You can't be a foreign exchange student," "I'm not buying that for you," "You can't do that," and a blistering snarl from my mother, "You want WINE and you're stuck with a beer budget!" To this day, it stings. But I dream of overcoming their remarks, the limitations that held them back from dreaming. Someday, I dream of a day that I climb onto that plane. I will print this now!

August 14, 2012 at 6:55 PM  
Blogger TwoBlueHeelers said...

Good goddess, that was emotional! I would like to add that the idea of writing down your dreams, wishes, goals, desires, has turned up for me in multiple places. Shakti Gawain's book, "Creative Visualization" is one. Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy (penname SARK) has another, "Make Your Creative Dreams REAL". Their styles are different, but both of them encourage and teach wisely, and with joy and love. You can do this with smaller dreams, as well as with the big picture kind of dreams. Thank you for reminding me, Jenna.

August 14, 2012 at 7:03 PM  
Blogger Suzanne said...

I want to visit all 50 states by the time Im 50 (7 years to go). I have not been to Vermont and when I do I want to go to nearby Jackson NY and visit Jenna who I have never met but I think is really cool and I want to meet Saro and Ryan and they will probably honk at me and I will laugh and laugh~ and we will talk chickens and gardening and perhaps enjoy a glass of Virginia wine on her porch.

August 14, 2012 at 7:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to stay here in my home, near the ocean. I don't want to have to move across the country to lve in a crazy urban area bc my husband hates it here. I want to lie in bed and hear the humpbacks singing.

August 14, 2012 at 8:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to be debt-free and working from home as a published author and sculptor.

August 14, 2012 at 8:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've just read through all 115 comments and it strikes me how similar our dreams are. Home, family, financial freedom, health, and living a natural life. All these hopes and dreams from all these different folks, so different yet so alike, give me hope for humanity. They are so simple and loving.

Jenna, you are an inspiration. I'm writing all of my "worldly" dreams down by hand, but there is one thing I'd like more than all the rest - and that is to be content with what I have right now. More can come, and I'll be grateful when it does, but I love the feeling of not wanting anything and of having everything I need right now.

August 14, 2012 at 10:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to be the best wife I can be for my husband, and the best mother to my children.
I want to live on our own piece of land with an old house, and from the porch we can watch our children catch fireflies in the summer twilight.
I want to teach my daughters wisdom and let my sons be men.
I want to choose to be content.
I want fireflies, dandelions, and constellations to always leave me in awe.
I want an old farm dog that follows the kids around and barks at strangers, but wags its tail at the same time.
I want a barn to explore.
I want laying hens and wooden knitting needles.

August 14, 2012 at 10:08 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

I'm having a hard time with this, because I feel as though I am blessed with many things I hoped for - a nice house with family connections, a wonderful husband, two lovely pups, a career in my chosen field, etc.

On the other hand, doesn't hurt to keep dreaming. So I want:
-to learn to fiddle (next weekend!)
-to have one or two healthy children (and raise them to appreciate both old-fashioned and progressive notions of equality and hard work)
-to earn a full-time job at a larger museum with benefits & a salary, w/o sacrificing the love I have for what I do

Thanks for making us do this! :)

August 14, 2012 at 10:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to continue to be healthy, and want to have a farm with no mortgageI I want to be in rural Maine near a body of water where my dogs and I can roam unchained.

I want more self reliance and a community of like minded people. This farm will be a safe place for my family. There will be a wood lot, and wood stoves, poultry, sheep, milk goats, Berkshires, and a Guernsey and perhaps some Morgans. There will be fishing and game and pasture, and a source of water in my off grid house.

I will not be able to see the road from my property. I hope we all live our dream.

August 14, 2012 at 10:53 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

I will know I've made it on a crisp autumn day, with the smell of hay, horses and heavy ripening produce on the breeze, hanging my clothes on the line while my wee ones help or play hide and seek between the sheets, their daddy humming as he beats steel into fanciful shapes, content to let the blacksmith that lives in his bones out to play in his off hours. Or on a cool summer's evening, the kids tucked in to bed under imperfect quilts stitched together by my own two hands, while we make music with fiddle and bodran on our covered porch, with the fireflies keeping time, or watch a thunderstorm roll in knowing all the animals in our care are safe and dry, with a good, quiet dog asleep at our feet.

August 14, 2012 at 11:04 PM  
Blogger pawsfurme said...

I want my own place, my own space, my own decisions, my own responsibilities. I want a farm with plenty of pasture and lots of woodland and a stream. I want a straw-bale rancher and and barn big enough to host a yearly Halloween haunted hayride. I want my Nigerian Dwarfs, Alpacas, Merino sheep, some chickens, Guard Llamas, and a few horses (at least 1 Gypsy Vanner). I want to be close to my family and near the core of my business' driving range. I want privacy, but I also want a community of friends, peace, and joy. I want to develop and grow a joyfully profitable farming business of goat milk soap, fruits, educational agritourism, and all the random crafty hobbies I have hoarded, waiting for the right opportunities to present themselves.
And this I send to the Universe.
Thank you, Jenna.

August 14, 2012 at 11:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are absolutely right, it really does work. I had a list of things I wantedin life written in a journal many years ago. Even though I did not keep it with me, I run across it now and then. It is amazing how many things have come true - a home in the country, a wonderful man to share it with, a dog, etc. I have added things along the way, the garden, chickens, apple trees, etc. I believe it is time to update my list.
My goals now are to add acreage to this small farm. To turn it into a "real" farm. With free range chickens (lots!), more apple trees, blueberry fields, sheep, even alpacas, a bigger garden, beehives, and my elusive dream, a horse of my own. I want to help my family, friends & neighbors. I want to foster the community and fellowship we are building here. I want to get better at photography, for I love taking pictures but need more practice. I want to do all of this, for a living, and be able to make a reasonable living doing it. Working hard, loving my days, outside, in the presence of animals. I want to travel to wonderful places, mostly national parks, and experience nature in the immediate, and photograph it in a way that shares that intimate creation with the world. And when it has all be said and done, I would love a small cabin somewhere in our big woods, off grid. Above all, I want to stay healthy enough to do any of the things above.
Thank you Jenna.

August 14, 2012 at 11:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd like to get the cottage I'm trying to buy. Three doors down from my sister's. I'd like a good man to share my life with. I'd like my family and friends to have all their dreams come true.

August 14, 2012 at 11:23 PM  
Blogger farm foreman said...

Jenna---I read your blog and Jon's daily, for the messages about transitions that are so necessary now.

I want a farm, 10-20 acres, with a fiber flock of sheep and a border collie partner. A couple of Norwegian Fjord horses, to ride and to work the farm with. An old, snug, welcoming comfortable home, with a big white country kitchen, to hold all the family especially at Christmas. Bread and pizzas made from my grains emerging from a brick hearth oven. Good neighbors to share the good life with. A vibrant cultural community. To write and make books.

To fall in love with a farm and hear its voice say, in so many words: "Where have you been? I've been waiting for you; welcome home."

To be unafraid of what I want.

August 14, 2012 at 11:33 PM  
Anonymous Sara said...

I really want to move out of the desert. I would love to live somewhere cooler where my kids can go to better schools. I want to live in the Chama River Valley.

August 14, 2012 at 11:35 PM  
Blogger Wendy Halliman said...

As I read all these posts, I realized how lucky I have been in my life. My husband and I purchased our dream home in the country over 20 years ago. We raised our daughters in the sunshine and fresh air. They played in the barn, dressed kittens in doll clothes, had pet chickens, helped with chores and both learned about nature, the seasons, birth, death and all points in between.

I was lucky enough to have horses
(5 at one point) and we were blessed enough to have 3 of them to the very end of their days. We raised hogs for food, traded pork for beef with our neighbor. Taught our kids how to fish and canoe in the lake at the back of our property (we have the only house on it!)

We met our neighbors by purchasing hay from them, or by asking permission to ride our horses across their property. We met some while looking for gardening advice. We became part of the local "ding-dong-dash" veggie style which is country veggie warfare. Don't lock your car at night and you'll end up with a back seat full of tomatoes, zuchini and beans!!!

I was a licensed wildlife rehabilitator for over 10 years and raised many different types of critters...from racoons to fawns. My kids learned basic first aid from treating injured animals. They also learned compassion and unconditional love from sharing their lives with so many critters. I maintained a good sized herd of dairy goats who provided milk for many of the orphaned wildlife as well as for us!

I was lucky enough to stay home with my daughters until both were in school. I'm lucky enough now to share retired life with my husband who taught at a local college for over 30 years.

We are lucky enough to spend spring, summer and fall here on the farm and winter in our new vacation home in Florida. I still have a veggie garden, but it is considerably smaller than in the old days. Enough for us and to share with family and neighbors.

I'm lucky enough to still have my best girlfriend in my life whom I know is always up for an adventure (such as fiddle camp which we'll be attending later this month!). She and I used to attend the local weekly auction which sold everything from veggies to dairy cows! We would bring home some of the craziest things...goats, calves, chickens, pheasants, turkeys and more. Our kids grew up together...spending countless summer nights at the nearby beach then going for ice cream after we'd all watch the sunset.

I've been so blessed!!! My dream now is to have one of my daughters decide they would like to take over the farm and bring it back to life...because they want to raise their children the way they were raised. I dream of good health for all my loved ones, especially my hubby of 27 years who is currently fighting esophageal cancer and my mother who is 84 and showing signs of age. I dream that my precious daughters will have happiness in their lives, and wonderful partners to share their lives with. I dream of meeting my grand children someday. I will add my prayers/energy to help all of you manifest your dreams!! What a blessing we all have to have Jenna come into our lives to teach and share with us!

August 14, 2012 at 11:46 PM  
Blogger ilona lisiecka said...

To be completely debt free.
To own a small home near the ocean with a small garden that I can use as a summer home and then retire to. To have a sheltie and/or a german shepherd. To create art. To be happy in my work while I need to do it.

August 15, 2012 at 7:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want perfect health after my knee surgery. I want to retire with enough money to live comfortably in the next five years. I want to sell my house and move closer to my grandchildren. I want to be a dog groomer. I want to find someone to share my life with that I will trust and love.

August 15, 2012 at 8:51 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I want a farm. There I've said it. I admit to it. I want lush veggie gardens, fruit bushes, clucking and quacking poultry, bleating lambs, squealing pigs, aching joints, and dirt under my nails. I want to be tied down because I have something to milk. I want trusty horses who can haul logs and run like the wind.

Someday my acres will be fenced. Trees will be cleared to put up loafing sheds on all sides of the property. I'll have a small flock of dorper or katahdin sheep for meat. I'll raise a few pigs every summer. We'll have a gelded male llama and a great pryenees to manage the wildlife. A good, ride able mountain horse and a draft horse will grace the fields. If I get very ambitious I'll try milking a goat.

I want to build terraced gardens in the front of the house for fruits, veggies, and flowers. There is a lot of lumber waiting to be harvested for raised bed gardens and animal shelters.

That is my dream. My crazy, amazing dream. I want to live off the land in simplicity and a lot of hardwork.

August 15, 2012 at 10:27 AM  
Blogger Marlo said...

I will taste and view my way, first through our beautiful country and then around the world with my husband and children. We have already been to 26 states, Spain and Morocco. I want to be kind and sincere to everyone I encounter. I want to help when I can. I want my children to find contentment in life and work. I already feel as if I am the luckiest person alive and I want that to continue.

Thank you Jenna for your inspiration.

August 15, 2012 at 10:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I drew a picture!

August 15, 2012 at 11:32 AM  
Anonymous MrsRobinett said...

I want my big cozy farmhouse with large garden, a few sheep, a bunch of chickens, ducks/geese/turkeys and rabbits for eating. Maybe a milk cow and a small herd for eating. I want my husband to work with me at home and for us to support ourselves doing it. I want my children to grow up learning from us how to live and love, with strong moral compasses. I want enough land to have my family build their own small houses with us and all live and work together living our lives the way we want to.

August 15, 2012 at 12:40 PM  
Anonymous jennifer said...

Perfect for the occasion: the avett brothers' "head full of doubt/road full of promise"


August 15, 2012 at 1:39 PM  
Blogger Linzleh said...

Dreams come in all sizes and I also have found if you keep them bottled up they do not grow... I agree that telling another person or writing them down is a great visualization tool, but clearly this alone is not what brings them to fruition. What truly breathes life into a dream is the courage we use taking those first uncertain steps in the direction to truly making our dream a reality. That being said I want to teach English as a second language overseas and write a book. My first baby steps are to volunteer once a week in an ESL class and try to write daily. That second "try to write" is where my confidence lags. Shall need more courage there. Thanks for your inspiration Jenna.

August 15, 2012 at 3:25 PM  
Blogger Linzleh said...

Dreams come in all sizes and I also have found if you keep them bottled up they do not grow... I agree that telling another person or writing them down is a great visualization tool, but clearly this alone is not what brings them to fruition. What truly breathes life into a dream is the courage we use taking those first uncertain steps in the direction to truly making our dream a reality. That being said I want to teach English as a second language overseas and write a book. My first baby steps are to volunteer once a week in an ESL class and try to write daily. That second "try to write" is where my confidence lags. Shall need more courage there. Thanks for your inspiration Jenna.

August 15, 2012 at 3:29 PM  
Blogger seagrrlz said...

Jenna, great post. Very thought provoking. I'd like to have chickens , a hive and a garden. I'm not sure where that will be. I've always lived in cities. Not sure if full time rural living is for me even though I always say I could live anywhere if I have the Internet :)

August 15, 2012 at 4:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to live in a small travel trailer with a colorful patchwork quilt on the bed, with all that I need within reach and what I don't need to be gone and out of sight.
I would like to be able to step outside of my little trailer and see the meadows, canyons, mountain tops. To be able to see from one desert valley floor to another from those mountain tops. To hear the birds and to hear silence. To hear and to see a mountain lion, coyote,a bear. To watch a beaver make it's house or watch the ducks fly in from their destinations. To watch the trees change in the seasons and cook by campfire in front of those trees. To be able to feel the heat of the desert and the clear cold air of the mountain tops.
Just to have a time away from all the negative things of society that I have made my own. To remove myself from buying stuff, from television and the job. To live frugally and wisely in my little trailer in front of God's immense creation before I become to old or before death takes me.

August 15, 2012 at 5:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have the farm (which I am trying to sell), I've had the animals, the gardens, etc. That part of my life is in the past. I now want a small space to call my own; a calmness in my soul, an active social life where people actually talk to me and listen to me, where anger is not a constant presence and where I am respected and loved. And...a place where fear does not touch me.


August 15, 2012 at 5:56 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

What is the title?

August 15, 2012 at 7:12 PM  
Blogger pawsfurme said...

To whichever Anonymous wants to be a dog groomer -
Where do you live and what steps have you taken?

August 15, 2012 at 10:41 PM  
Blogger kristen said...

I dream of a small cabin or cottage on a small acreage - somewhere quiet on the west side of my state - perhaps one of the islands. I'd like to be in the country, but within two miles of a small town that includes a store with natural foods and a library. I dream of a big garden, a large fenced area for my dogs (preferably the whole acreage), fruit trees and bushes, nearby forest, and a combination of sun and shade. I'd like to, eventually, be able to ride or drive my horse (or maybe drive a goat cart) to town. I want peace, and safety, and a cozy, small, simple home.

August 15, 2012 at 11:29 PM  
Blogger Bran said...

I am baby-stepping by "trying to write" each day as well. It is tough, but is good practice for when I really start to write. Keep it up! We're getting there step by step.

August 16, 2012 at 6:51 AM  
Blogger Bran said...

Very emotional & inspiring post and comments! I did not get to read all the comments, but will read more, later. Thank you, Jenna, for starting this, and to all the fellow comment-writers for sharing your dreams with the world as well.

I started 2012 with a promise to myself that this year would be my year of change; I would do whatever I needed to make sure I am happy & fulfilled with each day. I would find a way to quit my horrid day-job & do it. Maybe I would find an awesome day-job, or maybe I would start-up that Etsy site I have been planning for years. I would move out of the suburbs of NYC (where I came for school 8 years ago & never got around to leaving) & closer to my family. I would find a little farm & live off the land as much as possible. I would love & laugh & be surrounded by dear friends & family. I would be fulfilled, in every sense of the word.

August has been a whirlwind month. My partner proposed & I said, "yes!" After months of searching, my fiance (still getting used to that title) found new a day-job he loves, within a couple hours of my Grandparents' farm where I grew up. We found an old farm house with almost 5 acres for sale that we both really like & that we should be able to afford soon. Everything is coming together so fast! With all that I am very, very greatful for, here is my list for more:

-Move to our own little homestead of 5+ acres with room for friends & family at all times
-Be debt-free
-Have rabbits for meat & chickens for eggs (& maybe meat) & bees for honey & pollination (& because they are facinating little creatures)
-Have a kick-ass heirloom garden & some fruit trees to feed ourselves, preserve, & sell/barter with local farmers
-Have my own business (and related blog!) that suits my passions & talents
-Get back into playing with a large orchesra & learn to play my fiddle like a "fiddle"
-Watch the sun rise & set on our own little piece of the world
-Go to sleep every night knowing that I put in an honest day's work & accomplished something special with that day


August 16, 2012 at 7:28 AM  
Blogger Sarah Mc said...


I want to continue to learn... everyday. I want to purchase land pay it off and make money from it, not a fortune but enough. I want to continue to believe in dreams and asking... I want to adopt a horse ( that I just learned yesterday humming to her is the key )and bring her HOME to my land. I want to continue my education as a horse trainer and begin fostering drafts and draft Xs that I can train in the art of the farmers horse and adopt them out to homesteaders... I want to be free...just free!

Sarah Ivor VA

August 16, 2012 at 8:00 AM  
Blogger Sara Richardson said...

I want to feel settled. We are in limbo for the next two years as my husband got a promotion which moved him to Canada. Now I commute to see him and back home to Maine, which is a 10 hour drive each way.
I would like a larger home for our family of four. Same beach side neighborhood we are in now, just bigger.
I want to create, mainly with my sewing machine. Selling would be wonderful too!
I want to teach my girls to be respectful citizens.
I can't wait to get back to Maine permanently and get back to my veggie garden. I didn't garden this year due to our moving back and forth and that has been depressing. I want to grow all of our own veggies again.
I want to allow my children to have the childhood I did. Carefree. I want to join along with them and be at peace.

August 16, 2012 at 9:47 AM  
Blogger Charlotte Boord said...

My dream/goal is to live in a small restored 1800s log cabin on 3-5 acres with a garden, 2-3 goats, 6-7 chickens, and bees. I want to know what's in the food I'm eating. I want to live away from the City and all it's noise and commotion. I want quiet; I want a simpler life.

August 16, 2012 at 9:57 AM  
Anonymous Kate said...

Hello all,
My dream for the future is a worn old farm house on my own land in upstate NY (most likely in Livingston or Germantown areas). The house is restored and has some newly designed elements. We have numerous barns and sheds that double as a work studio for Marc and comfortable cottages for family and guests.
The land will be private and secluded but not far from friendly neighbors whom we share a strong sense of community and kinship with. There are berry bushes and fruit trees and pasture. Not a lot of upkeep, more wild. There is a beautiful fence that contains all the animals.
The main house has a large rustic kitchen with an island in the middle to gather around, with copper pots hanging overhead. There is much laughter. Friends are over often. You can feel the history that permeates the home from the years passed but this is now combined with a new "smart" layout and design that Marc has added for graceful, comfortable living.
I enjoy rising early, having tea and toast and fresh fruit from my own land. I watch the sun get higher and shine strong into our windows, warming my skin. The earth calls. I go out to greet my horse. I get on with my morning chores like feeding the dogs and other farm animals and mucking the barn. Maybe we have some chickens. Every single animal is rescued. We are all living the idillic life together.
Rose learns to love the land and the animals. or should I say never stops loving? Never unlearns her inherent call to nature. She helps with the duties and asks many questions. She remains forever curious and I will fan that fire as her mother.
After chores we can be lazy with the animals, ride our horse bareback as she grazes in the sun. We go for a trail ride on our land as we have many acres to spare, the dogs following closely.
When we get home we eat a simple meal made from food that is local and sustainably raised.
Marc takes a break from his studio work to eat with us. He is thriving because of the balance he has found with well-paying jobs in the city and time to let his creative soul live upstate.
I have a few clients in my holistic wellness business to tend to now so I carve some time to catch up on emails and phone calls for my business. I am also teaching yogadance classes and helping women feel good in their skin. I might even have gone to school for homeopathy by now and can combine this practice in helping anyone that might need it.
Nights are early to bed, only to rise again, all huddled in bed together (dogs and cats included!) for a family cuddle on a cool morning.
I feel useful. I feel fulfilled. I have purpose. I have discipline and direction. I live in the moment.
this is my dream.

August 16, 2012 at 12:32 PM  
Blogger Keli Martin said...

Our dream is to own enough land to raise Highland cattle, pigs, sheep, goats, a horse or two, chickens, turkeys and whatever else may strike our fancy. We want to be self sufficient, raising and growing all of our own foods and no longer supporting "the man." We want to be a zero waste home, AND, we want to do it with close friends. Living in community, raising our children together, supporting one another, working and sweating side by side. Think hippy commune without the glazed eyes hehee. We are part way there with what we have been blessed with currently. We finally said, "Enough! Enough talking and let's start doing!" We don't have a lot of land where we are currently but we are doing what we can, where we're at. We have 12 layer chickens, 12 raised garden beds, 1 raised strawberry bed, a big L-shaped raised herb bed, two apple trees, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries we planted just this past spring. We are on our way! This dream in constantly on my mind, haunting my dreams, working out details, looking at what is for sale, praying, crying out for real community and courage to actively step out in faith.

Thank you Jenna, thank you ... for being an inspiration and the get-off-you-butt-and-do-it push we oftentimes needs. You, my dear, are amazing, a force to be reckoned with! Thank you!

August 16, 2012 at 12:46 PM  
Blogger downeast becka said...

to live full of abundance and kindness, continue to create bounty in the beautiful land we have worked so hard on, to be present to the beauty of every day and open in heart and spirit to my beloveds and all of earth...

August 16, 2012 at 1:56 PM  
Blogger Knit Picky Knitter said...

Jenna - this post inspired me to talk with my husband, Robert, about our plans to move out of Chicago in the next two years and what we want our lives to be like. So we created this vision statement that is vague but gives us a long-term vision that we need to keep us moving forward. Here it is:

We strive to:

•Live near a college town or small city on a small working farm with some animals (sheep, chickens, goats and a few horses).
•Improve our quality of life by living a slower-paced lifestyle that gives us time to enjoy our family, our home, the natural world, our community, and each other.
•Grow more of our own food and raise some livestock for food, wool, extra income and fun!
•Lead a more self sufficient life and have a more direct relationship with the things we eat and use on a daily basis.
•Feel more connected to the natural world and enjoy it every day.
•Build strong values in our children and provide them with a beautiful and more natural landscape to explore and appreciate.
Experience joy, humor and appreciation in our lives every day.

We are looking seriously at relocating to one of four areas: outside of St. Paul, MN, Madison, WI, Ann Arbor or Kalamazoo MI and my preference - Portland Maine. We want to move near a small city or college town so we can still expose our kids to culture, the arts and some diversity. One of the things that I like about living in an urban area is the cultural diversity. My kids have friends from many ethnic backgrounds. I looked up Maine on the internet and they have less than 1% of African American, Hispanic and Asian citizens. It will seem very strange to us. I also worry that my kids will have a hard time adjusting to a slower paced lifestyle. My daughter takes ballet and is interested in theatre, my sons are HUGE baseball fans. Maine doesn't have a team!!!!! If it were just my husband and myself - this would be a no brainer. With the kids (boys are 12-year-old triplets and daughter is 8) these choices/changes become much more complicated and difficult to make.

Anyway, just the ramblings of a midwestern city girl who aches to get out of the urban sprawl and get my hands dirty, my yard full of critters and plants, and my soul full of country stars and moonlight.

Good luck with your dreams Jenna. I so enjoy sharing them with you.


August 16, 2012 at 3:10 PM  
Blogger Julia Wolfe said...

I want peace, love, happiness, fantastic health, and prosperity for myself and all of my loved ones and our animals. I also want for my people to be generous and share all that they have.

August 16, 2012 at 3:52 PM  
Blogger Tru Vani said...

I want my husband to come back to me and our daughter, to our marriage and our family; I want us to do the work to make magic of our marriage, to heal each of us, to heal ourselves together, and to recommit to a lifetime together, growing in the skills to make it happen.

August 16, 2012 at 5:52 PM  
Blogger Sara Richardson said...

Knit Picky Knitter- hopefully you read this because I couldn't find any other way to get in touch with you. I'm from Portland Maine (honestly the best place). I understand you are concerned about diversity, but Portland is very diverse. The state as a whole, not so much. Also, our arts and entertainment scene is pretty great. Theater, ballet you name it. And we do have the Sea Dogs baseball team!
I just moved to Canada and I'm, however I still own my home in Portland and I cannot wait to get back. In my opinion it is the BEST place to raise children!
Any questions...let me know.

August 16, 2012 at 6:23 PM  
Blogger ASTOLDBYGINGER said...

I had to stop and think about this one, I had already attained many of my dreams and had not yet realized I was walking around with no current dreams to work towards, so Thank you for the post.

My dreams:

-That my oldest daughter will conquer her anxiety and panic disorder , so that she may live her dreams without fear ever standing in the way.

- To grow a larger scale vegg garden(to include fruit trees and bushes),one that will feed our family of four for a year with extras to give to those in need .

- To be fully understood. Often I am referred to as crazy because I wish to live a sustainable ,simple life. My family does not always get on board with my ideas pertaining to self sustainability. I want them to know I'm not the crazy one for wanting to live a simple life one that is close to God and Mother Earth. They are the ones that are crazy for fighting it

-I will have a more sustainable lifestyle , I want a wood burning stove to heat the house in the winter,I want solar panels to produce electricity ,I want to learn to hunt to feed our family, I want a simple life.

- I want my talents to produce an ongoing income for my family (so I can buy my wood burning stove!)

-I want to be debt-free !

- I want to teach those who want to learn how to live simple ..how to do it

August 17, 2012 at 7:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My husband and I want to live in a home that we have no payments on, besides the taxes. We want to have 5 to 10 acres and be self sufficient. We would like this to be in a warmer climate or where winters are shorter than where we live now. Preferably Tennessee, We loved Tennessee when we visited there.

August 19, 2012 at 8:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bearded mountain man, love, music, dogs, wilderness, garden, fields, mountains, vegetables, time to think, books, donkeys, air to breathe, my children, nourishment, health, home brew, friends, goats yoga, contentment!

August 19, 2012 at 2:39 PM  
Blogger Larry said...

I want to add the adjacent empty lot to our 2.45 acres and make all of our own electricity. I want an outdoor boiler with propane backup. I want an indoor wood stove with a cook top and oven.

August 19, 2012 at 7:38 PM  
Blogger Melleah said...

This is a little late, but I'm hoping you post it:

I want a farm to share my love of horses, a hard day's work, and nature with others. I want it to inspire people to get off the couch, away from the TV, and do something for themselves.
I want to go to bed at night tired to the bone. I want to have a purpose beyond the regular 9-5 job.

150-200 acres of land with woods and pasture for horses, trails to ride/drive on, and a garden to make the neighbors green with envy. A barn with a beautiful quilt painted on the side with a stone foundation. A house that's just big enough with a root cellar. A few horses to ride or drive, a flock of chickens, a dog and a couple of barn cats.

Living within my means in a beautiful place with the things that make my soul smile. That's my dream.


August 24, 2012 at 7:16 PM  
Blogger Melleah said...

This is a little late, but I'm hoping you post it:

I want a farm to share my love of horses, a hard day's work, and nature with others. I want it to inspire people to get off the couch, away from the TV, and do something for themselves.
I want to go to bed at night tired to the bone. I want to have a purpose beyond the regular 9-5 job.

150-200 acres of land with woods and pasture for horses, trails to ride/drive on, and a garden to make the neighbors green with envy. A barn with a beautiful quilt painted on the side with a stone foundation. A house that's just big enough with a root cellar. A few horses to ride or drive, a flock of chickens, a dog and a couple of barn cats.

Living within my means in a beautiful place with the things that make my soul smile. That's my dream.


August 24, 2012 at 7:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to dance onstage.

September 28, 2012 at 4:34 PM  

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