What is a farm/homestead to you?

COWLOVINGIRL Posts: 954 ✭✭✭✭

I just got back from a trip to my cousins farm. They have a dairy farm with big barns, piles of fermenting silage, and lots of rolling hills carpeted with pasture, some lush, some scrappy. But what I love the most is that there are cats and dogs everywhere! In my mind, a farm or homestead is not the same without dogs free-ranging and following their owners EVERYWHERE, and a cat around every corner, rubbing on your legs. What makes a farm/homestead special to you?


  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,356 admin
    edited August 2020

    I will tell you about my favorite homestead. It is the homestead of my heroes. I like ours, and we have dreams, but my favorite is one that I have deep roots in. Sadly, due to deception on my uncle's part, it is no longer in the family. :(

    My grandpa travelled from where his young family lived to look at & purchase a quarter section. Later, he would sell 80 acres & keep the other 80.

    He cleared the yard site by hand. The trees there are mainly oak & poplar. He had a team of horses, that I am sure worked hard as well. He scouted for solid trees with which to build his log barn down the hill by a marsh & dam, & around the corner and a small cabin on top of the hill. Any boards, he & his brother cut on an old bandsaw. Log pieces were cut with a 2 man saw. I have seen pictures. Those were real men. They were not afraid of work.

    When he was done setting up, he brought his family over by covered wagon. At some point, they established a large garden & bought some cows. Some were for beef, some to milk. Most of his garden flooded every spring. Some of this flooding went through the pasture, so brought with it excellent nutrition. He kept his garden weed free and always had the most, biggest & best produce around. He was generous with what he had been given through his hard work.

    He farmed with a team of horses, later with tractors. His favorite was an Allis Chalmers. My husband would know the model.

    I remember huge watermelons & massive pumpkins, & a mucky spring garden that you could lose your boots in (four generations had this happen), mucking around in bare feet was encouraged!

    There were lots of apples, rhubarb, cucumbers, carrots & grapes. The corn was tall & sweet. Lots of canning in the dirt cellar.

    I loved the smell of clean straw & sweet hay, listening to the sounds and smelling the warm milk first going into the pail & whirring through the separator. It was the best to pop little wild kitten noses into the warm foamy milk. It was the only time you could touch them.

    I am not sure if I remember chickens. They had them too.

    Their house was always open to everyone. I would also welcome you in for a meal or milk (or coffee) or cookies! Do you want some heavy cream with that? Would you like more? Help yourself to more. Eat!

    To me, a good farm/homestead is natural, organic (yes, no chemical use, but also full of life and energy!). It is a place with character, built on the back of hard work, with plants & animals in abundance. It is a place which builds fond memories and has a legacy.

    My grandma died before my grandpa. When he died, I scooped up a bit of his wonderful garden soil to put in a jar to be buried with him. I tucked it as close to his hands as I could. I told him he needed a piece of his garden with him. I have one for me too.

    When his house was demolished, we brought home one of the hand hewn beams that supported the floor. If we ever build a house, it will be given a place of honor, but be removable should we ever have to move. My grandma's pantry door latch will also have a prominent and important place.

    Thank you for letting me reminisce & revisit my grandparent's farm, and thank you for letting me show you around. :) It has been a welcome distraction.

    COWLOVINGIRL Posts: 954 ✭✭✭✭

    Awwwww. Thank you so much for sharing this LaurieLovesLearning! That is what a farm truly is. Do you mind if I copy and paste your post and print it out? I want to keep it as a goal to work towards.  Thank you so much!

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,356 admin
    edited August 2020

    I edited some typos. 😬

    You certainly can. My grandparents would be honored and very humbled. They would chuckle and try to downplay it saying they weren't worthy and didn't do much. ;)

    My grandparents were very important to me and were to be admired in many ways...and were by neighbors for miles around. I will most likely never achieve what they did (and it is a different era), but they will always be my inspiration. I am glad that you felt the same inspiration through my story.

    Dream, work hard and with purpose, don't give up, choose your steps wisely, never stop learning, be content with what you have, be honorable & be humble. Honor your parents. Listen closely to their advice. Find a mentor or two. Be very careful whom you choose to follow and who you spend time with. Many are not who they appear to be. Choose your future husband carefully. Pray for him already. You are young & have a lot of potential.

    I have heard of people putting together a collection of words and stories that inspire them. When they feel discouraged, frustrated or sad, they open it up. If you do this, do not forget to include bible verses that inspire you as well. I suggest this as I understand that this is an important part of who you are. Having a tool of this sort at your disposal is good.

    You have already developed into a beautiful, strong, young lady from all I have read on the forum. Keep on going! Tell your parents they are doing well and should be proud. You are an inspiration to this old lady.

    Have a beautiful day & be encouraged!

    COWLOVINGIRL Posts: 954 ✭✭✭✭

    LaurieLovesLearning Thank you so much for the encouragement, you are helping me so much.

  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,838 ✭✭✭✭✭

    To me my garden even though in an urban city is my farm/homestead and what makes it special to me is the food I can grow for my family, the serenity the garden brings me and I do not have any animals myself but my garden attracts a lot of my neighbors' cats, wild birds, butterflies and dragonflies, the latter three makes my garden more magical.