May the long time sun shine upon you, all love surround you and the pure light within you, guide your way on "~Incredible String Band

Monday, May 18, 2009

Settling In....

It's been five months now since we have settled, here in this beautiful meadow, and now that the initial thrill has worn off the reality has set in, the reality of rent, bills and the inevitable inertia I feel whenever I am in one place for a long time. I sometimes wonder, if only for a fleeting moment, if we made the right decision. Then I look at Sage romping joyfully through the house, exploring the meadows and woods out our front door and I know that we have made the right decision, at least for now.


Although I very much miss life on the road, I feel no bitterness about the situation at all, nor do I feel as though I am being made to live a life other than I would chose. I am learning how to breathe through my impulse to always just go when things get tough, and things have been tough lately. Although our rent is very little compared to most, it has been difficult as we are used to paying nothing for rent. The whole idea of paying huge amounts of money to someone every month to live, is a new experience for me, and it is taking some getting used to.


To make ends meet we are still selling things on our etsy site and working hard on the felt boot aspect of our craft. We have finally, with the help of our friend Babu, a leather shoemaker, come up with an all weather, rugged sole for our boots. They can now be worn in just about all climates. In town here there is a weekly craft venue, Saturday Market, and we will be vending there. So far however we have not been able to get in as one must acquire a certain number of points to get a place and everyone else seems to have more than us right now. We expect to have enough within the next few weeks and in the meantime we are working on building up our stock. It is slow going as each boot takes about 9 hours or more to complete, but we keep at it. A few weeks ago we took the last little bit of money we had and purchased a drum carder. This is a hand cranked device that combs fleece into batts, batts that can be used for felting or spinning. It is an expensive item by anyone's standards, but we hope it will pay for it's self by saving us money on the purchase of already prepared wool batts. In addition to that it allows us to experiment more with color blending.


Our days have been so busy here, busier than I am used to, and perhaps than they ever have been. Trying to jump-start a business ( in this economy no less), raise a small child and renovate a house while at the same time making sure we have money for food has proven very challenging. Yea I know, you are all saying, welcoming to the real world, right ?


Truth be told there are times when we literally have nothing, but then something will always come through weather it be an online order or sometimes a trip to the local food box. I feel strongly that once we get established at the market we will do exceptionally well. We have given ourselves one year and by that time if we are not making regular money we will go back to the bus where rent is free and living is cheap.


Whatever happens, we have both agreed that there is no way either of us could ever be content with an office or other job. Not that there is anything at all wrong with those jobs, they are just not for us. It is either make this work, or back to the bus.


Our little community here on the farm, now consisting of five adults, four kids, three horses, three sheep, two dogs, and two cats, is growing in new ways. We now have a name, The Land of AHS... ( A. Healing. Space). There is also a small garden and a wooden yurt that is being used for retreats and workshops. It is turning out to be a wonderful place to live and I feel so blessed.


In other exciting news, I have recently realized my long time dream of becoming a shepherdess ! We have adopted a small Shetland sheep family, a mama and two lambs ! They are the sweetest little family and I plan to use their wool for hand spinning and felting. Sage adores them as well and helps me feed them every morning and evening. She already understands that the sheep have wool that mommy and daddy use to make things out of.


Speaking of Sage, she is thriving...speaking in complete sentences now and continues to amaze and surprise us every day, constantly pushing me to expand and flow with her in new directions. In a few weeks she will be two, it is hard to believe. I know parents always say that but it really is amazing to witness her growing, it all seems to go so fast. For her birthday we hope to have the room we are fixing up for her completed with a bed, play area and such.


This whole settling process brings up a lot of fear for me. Mostly fear of being stuck. More and more though I am realizing that I can only really be stuck in my head. I am learning how to let go of things and just flow from a place of stillness as opposed to one of constant motion. It seems when we were on the road in the bus, we were always home and if a situation or place was not working for us, we would just move on, flowing and floating freely about the country. It was rather like changing the channel on a TV. Turn the dial and, da ta ! , a whole new scene and cast of characters !


What I am learning is that, in a settled life, when things get bad, that same flowing, the letting go or surrendering to what IS still needs to take place, but instead, from a place of stillness inside my heart and mind, as opposed to moving about in the world physically. I must realize my true home is not where I am at in the world, but where I am at in my heart and mind.


That is the challenge.... and if I can master that, then I can be free wherever I may be....





A trip to the oregon coast beach..





A trip to the oregon coast beach..



A view from our porch...

Sage helps feed the baby lambs..


Jameila, the mama....



My new Strauch "finest" drum carder...

21 comments:

kate said...

beautiful post really...i've been in our "new" (rented) home for 7 months now...and know all too well the stress that paying the rent can bring (especially being self employed), but there is not greater reward that having a place for your childs roots to grow and wings to spread...and i also learned a very valuable lesson of TRULY letting go when it comes to the financial situation. You can hide from yourself, but you can't hide from the universe : )

beadbabe49 said...

Glad to hear you are making it in your new space, however temporary it may be, and I hope the local market works for you.
My goodness...I can hardly believe sage is almost 2 already...she sure has an infectious grin and reminds me of my son at that age.

tansy said...

what a great contemplation. your last sentence really hit home with something i struggle with a lot: "I must realize my true home is not where I am at in the world, but where I am at in my heart and mind." i try to remind myself of that often. :)

i hope the market goes well for you. your work is very creative and amazing! sometimes i wish i were rich so i could help support artists like you.

sage is beautiful! kids truly are amazing at this age.

SuSuseriffic said...

Wonderful! It is good to read about you again. The felting is incredible and Sage is a sweetie!

suburban hippy mama said...

It's definatly a challenge to be mindful and content in life (not only in practice, like meditation). Once we become "mindful" in everyday life, and not have the desires of another way, we can truly be content and at peace. Still working on that myself...my husband and I are buying our first house right now and it is TERRIFYING! Good luck to you and yours.

XOXO from Oklahoma!

Juli said...

It looks like a beautiful place to settle :) I remember feeling the same way when I realized my traveling days were over. They ended because I chose to settle and tho I had always longed to be settled, I also felt a bit scared. That was many years ago now and altho I still miss the freedom and still sometimes feel the need to go, I've never once regretted having roots :)

Tara said...

I've been at my new home for 9 months. It's hard! I've been so used to having a "love me or peace out" attitude, and now I look at people and they could be my neighbors for the next 40 years. Its like existing in a whole new universe.

Your boots and fairies are amazing! I wish I could afford to support your art. It's wonderful to see the pictures of Sage as she gets bigger, too.

Good luck with your rootedness, sister.

hippymummy said...

If we cannot find what we search for within ourselves the we'll surely never find it without. A beautiful creed to live by, not quite as easy as it sounds! You seem to be gently settling into your current lifestle,beautiful daughter, lovely home, stunning surroundings and likeminded people to support one another through these early stages of creating a community together. Sage is beautiful little girl, she has a face full of mischief and fun without a doubt. I hope all goes well for you with regards to the market, a regular income really does make all the difference. Whilst our lives shouldn't revolve around material posessions and money when there's not enough and you don't know where your next meals coming from life can become very difficult, especiallly for those of us who are parents amd have little - and not so little! - mouthes to feed. I trust that you will be provided with all that you need, as you already know we may feel at our wits end but just as you're ready to give up and run away something always pops up and saves us at the 11th hour. When this stops happening THEN i'll probably start to question the decisions i've made and wonder if there's another path for me that i've not even noticed yet, unable to see the wood for the trees. Until next time xXx

mrsb said...

What an amazing blog you have! Glad I stumbled across it!

Alicia said...

what a great post. Your new home sounds wonderful. I can't believe Sage is going to be 2 soon. Will you e-mail me your addy so I can send you some snail mail?

Much love to you!

Cousin Alicia

Anonymous said...

Love your post! The end reminds me of the Proust quote:

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes"

Jenn said...

yes, you hit the nail on the head, so to speak...finding that peace in your heart and head is the hardest thing. i was once a roving spirit, much like you. we moved about once every two years. it was so hard for me to learn to be still in one spot and be *happy* there.

ahh, some days i wonder if i have it figured out. there are still those days that i just want to pick up and leave. it's something inside of you that may never be quieted. but you may learn to adapt where you are, and for the most part, accept it.

i understand not wanting to pay for something you don't "own" also. we finally got a place to "own" and we are fixing it up and it is ours...and yet, then you feel "tied" to the place. "stuck" is an appropriate term. it's harder to leave. that may or may not be a good thing. :0)

anyway, so glad you FINALLY wrote...i have been missing hearing from you. wish you had included more pictures. i love hearing about your life, please post more often!!

you all take care. much love and many hugs here from tennessee...
:0)

EnchantedChild said...

Some while back I stumbled across your blog in the vastness of cyberspace.I love your spirit so close to my own and the beautiful way you express yourself and the way you are with life.My heart and soul longs to be on the road travelling and being free and close to nature...so much of what you write I also face within myself..........
May The Enchanted Gypsys always be free and dance with Life for it is within our heart and souls and can be expressed in many ways

Little Dickens Designs said...

I love your blog. I hope the market works out well for you. Your daughter is beautiful!

Hixon and Co. Photography said...

Your daughter is beautiful! And your porch view is amazing. To be surrounded by all that green... that'd be awesome.

goddess in the groove said...

you a few days ago through a friend on FB :). Now I read your blog. I LOVE your bus, and have so much enjoyed seeing it in construction. You and the bus, that is the way I wish I could live. Even the beautiful home you have now. But being an artist living off her art myself, I know how hard it is. I always have the problem of not being able to create on demand :)..but it looks like you are getting that covered :).
Your Goddess doll is fabulous and magical, and so are your boots. I fell in love with both. I will keep them in my heart until I can buy them.
P.S. Sage is a beautiful, and blessed little human. What a wonderful life you are giving her! I feel the same way about "having less", yet having the time to see my kids grow (so fast!). It is a hard decision, but one you will never regret. Much love!

SHI said...

I'm so happy to see your new post! Sage is as cute as ever and shows strong fae features....I love it! I'm visualizing great things for you and your family with the market and selling your wares. I hope to see you at FW this year. I saw you last year but it was a fleeting moment across the field. Take care and I look forward to your updates!

~Brightest Blessings

Cage Free Family said...

Wishing you all the best in this transition... we are with you in this attempt at making it work. Our new house without wheels remains empty of all but two beds as we try to take great care with the whole want vs. need thing. Our rent too is very low by country standards, but it still amazes me how quickly a house can drain and call for cash.

Good to see you writing again! I've been wondering how you have been.

Messi said...

Interesting text. You have a nice blog. Keep it up!

birdstyle said...

hullo, I just stumbled upon your blog and got lost reading about your life, your writing is so eloquent and beautiful! I'm very in awe of your hard work and craftmanship and wish you the all the very best. I adore the shape of the boots I've seen on etsy and will endeavour to save my pennies and pounds!all the best to you and your lovely family x

GypsyPunk said...

I understand how you feel, been moving, too, a lot... and it was as if some people cannot grasp that a certain kind of life (of constant movement) is also a reality. lol.