A Family Builds a Homestead in the Rain

The Year In A Word

If there were a word to represent 2014, for us it would be change. I’m hardly the person whose shoes I wore in January, and as we wind down toward the holidays, looking back on the year and forward to the next, I could not feel more optimistic or joyful.

The thematic transitioning of 2014 has not yet concluded: in a few days, after warm celebration and feasting and hot toddies at my mom’s, we’ll be standing in our new home in Oregon.

This first leg of the move will be for the essentials. We’ll install appliances, stretch fencing wire, find new homes for plates and towels. I’m determined to dig one small patch of garden to tuck some garlic away for overwintering.

Isis of the wonderful Little Mountain Haven writes about her New Year intention in a word. This year hers was growth, which I must borrow because it perfectly represents our coming year. We will be growing our homestead, adding more animals and projects. We’ll be growing our own food to the greatest possible extent. We’ll be growing our hopes and goals, growing our experiences. We’ll begin thinking about growing our family.

As we embark on this journey, I’ll keep the intention of growth near to my heart. The work will be hard and good. We’ll have triumphs and setbacks and the help of family and friends.

Since I’m not sure how frequently we will have internet access during our travels, I’ll be reflecting on the year with some prior stories, recipes and photos. I look forward to returning with much to tell of the coming chapter on the new homestead.

Do you have a word that encapsulates your past year or an intention for the next?

Similar posts
  • Three Months On The Homestead With autumn peeking around the corner of September, with my daughter’s second birthday days away, with cool afternoons finally settling in, we’re looking back on our first three months here. Life is feeling lush, productive, and happy. The guestroom bed is covered with jars– canned blackberry jam, blueberry jam, applesauce, preserved lemons. The kitchen table [...]
  • Anticipation of Fall In the midst of summer, under July heat and between berry-picking and trips to the lake, my mind always begins to move to fall. On chilly mornings, or when a breeze picks up and thrashes the plants out front, I feel it coming, though its arrival is still months off yet. It’s always been at this [...]
  • Summertime Summer is not my favorite season by any stretch, yet in spite of unprecedented weeks of heat here in the Pacific Northwest, this summer has been filled with charm and simple luxuries. The creek is at what neighbors say is a record low for this time of year, and I believe it. But it still offers [...]
  • One Month On The Homestead We’ve been here one month, now. It’s all sinking in– the reality, the permanence. It’s spectacular. And while the work is hard and plentiful, I remind myself of how much we’ve accomplished. With a toddler at foot (or on my back), here’s what the first month has yielded on the new homestead: We’ve installed and [...]
  • The May Garden As May concludes, here finally is an update on the garden. We’ve been here two weeks, and it’s finally starting to feel real. The garden project is one of my most gratifying, although much of it seems to be two steps forward; one step back. I’m continuing to plant, in the interest of a passing [...]


  1. December 23, 2014    

    Thank you so much for mentioning me 🙂
    That’s so exciting about your new home in Oregon, it sounds like the perfect way to start the new year.
    Happy Holidays to you and your family Kelly!

    • December 23, 2014    

      Thank you Isis, and to you and your family as well! Enjoy your beautiful snowy mountain!

  2. December 24, 2014    

    Growth would describe us as well! We are spending our winter deciding how, what, when and where on the five acres we bought in August. For starters, it will be planting larger vegetable and herb gardens, as well as adding chickens and bees to our little piece of paradise.

    Safe journey to you and yours! We look forward to hearing more from you soon!

    • December 24, 2014    

      Wonderful! Sounds very familiar! Congratulations on your new place and best wishes for wonderful growth!!

  3. December 30, 2014    

    Considering I’ve never met you, this may be a bit silly, but I’m so excited for your move to Oregon! It’s almost like having a friendly neighbor, the one thing missing from my new life here. I’m looking forward to reading all about your move and subsequent adventures.

    • January 3, 2015    

      Thank you, Hope! Just returned from the first leg of the first leg of the move– intense, exhausting but so immensely rewarding and filled with beauty. I feel the same way, by the way– I hope yours is going well so far. Thank you so much for following along!


I'm Kelly. Writer, crafter, forager, country winemaker, cook. Mama of an awesome toddler and married to my best friend. We recently returned to the Pacific Northwest, where we're setting out to grow, make, and learn as much as we can as the future unfolds.

Follow Along

Never miss a post! Receive updates by email.

Popular Posts