Wednesday, December 15, 2010

And now we are farmers - Part Four

I'm sharing the story of how we came to live on our homestead. If you missed the beginning, And now we are farmers - Part One, Part Two, and Part Three

We had to be out of our house in Akron. That week there was a lot of rain which delayed things on the other end. Not only did our new house need to be moved, the hope was to get the house moved and up so the electric company would finish the lines and connect us. The rain made the house site too muddy to work with on the scheduled day. It did finally dry out enough to get the house there, but not at all on the original time line.

So, the day the moving truck left Akron our house was on the property. It was not entirely put together. There was no electric, no water, and no septic. The truck had to go back so all of our stuff was unloaded into the living room. The only thing to do was to stay with my parents until we could get the house in living condition. Tim and I, three kids seven and under, with my parents, in a single wide trailer, in a trailer park. Good times. Good times.

That didn't last long. After a week or so, we were all getting on each others nerves. The double wide was put together though we still had no utilities. We decided we'd make do. So we moved out to the property, and essentially camped in our house for about two weeks. We cooked with camp stoves and grills. Anything cold had to be kept in coolers, and we bought a lot of ice. Water was hauled in with camping jugs. Really, and truly it wasn't bad. It felt good to be out on the property, and if it wasn't for all the unpacking and organizing, it would have felt like a mini vacation.

Then the electric came. We still didn't have water lines, but instead bought a 2100 gallon water tank, and had water hauled in. Wells are not common on this ridge, and county water is a relatively new thing also. Before the county lines were put in many people used cisterns and water tanks for their water. A man nearby hauled in water for us, and still hauls it for some houses that have not hooked into the county lines.

My parents' trailer was moved later that fall, but the water situation remained the same through the winter and into the spring. Our first Thanksgiving here, the water lines froze. The guys rented a ditch witch to get the lines buried better. The first of many working family holidays.

The first winter here was a fairly quiet one. We did get our first animal, a dog. I'd always wanted the kids to have a dog, and finally we were in a place for one. Pac was a crazy half grown puppy when we got him. My dad couldn't stand him, and threatened several times to do him in. Pac was a chewer, and he loved to steal Dad's tools that he'd lay on the ground while he was working. Tim's dad suggested we put a muzzle on Pac for awhile to break his bad habits. We did and it worked wonderfully. Pac turned into a wonderful companion and pet for the kids, and it is hard to imagine the farm with out him now.

But Pac (and a rabbit we'd brought with us) were the only animals. I was very pregnant, and we didn't know anyone. I remember feeling extremely isolated that first winter, and almost bored. Hard to imagine now considering how crazy our schedules have become. Sometimes, I long for those quiet times from the first winter again.

In February of 2006, I started this blog. I named it "Adventures in the 100 Acre Wood" and that is exactly what we've had in the last five years. Later, when Dad needed a legal name for the farm, he called it Mil-Ton Farms. Mil for Miller and Ton for Appleton. There is also a town near us called Milton.

This series of posts brings you up to the time I started this blog. The blog contains many of our stories and adventures. Some of them are fun, some of them are painful, and many of them are stories of lessons learned the hard way. I plan to write one more post in this series. Thanks for following along.


  1. Wow! That was an adventure! I'm glad you started the blog though.

  2. Sounds like our adventures when we moved to our 10 acres in rural NC...thank goodness my husband works for a heavy equipment company and we were able to use whatever we needed for just the cost of delivery and fuel....we had to "do" the driveway 3 times before it would stay put and not disappear into the red clay!! Thanks for sharing.