We rented a small house for a year or so while we looked for a place of our own. I got a full time job and left the world of Etsy shops, goats, horses, foraging, chickens, gardens, and canning jars-and walked into an office with four walls, a desk, a horribly busy phone system, and nice variegated blue carpet squares. I mean...I love my job, but I missed being immersed in the middle of nowhere on a hillside in the country. I missed my nettle soup and elderberry elixir. I missed the rooster crow in the morning, and the damp musty sunrise that greeted me with the horses each dawn.
About a year ago we were finally in a position to purchase a home. We had saved for a down payment, but most of the homes we desired in the country were well out of our price range. We put an offer in on a home out in the country on about three acres; just enough for the two horses we were boarding, but it was a mess. It needed fixing that was for sure, but we were going to make it work. Alas, it did not pass inspection as the well was bad and the current owner was not going to invest the money into fixing it. We were at a loss. There were just not any homes in our price range in the country, and our landlord wanted us out of her little home as she was moving back to the area.
I was longing for a home in the country again; a home that welcomed me back to the mornings where the coffee nudged me awake and the rooster sang songs of rising daylight. On an April day in the middle of a snow storm our realtor called and offered to show us a home in the little town of Greenbush. Now I wasn't too keen on living in a little town mind you, I wanted to live in the vast country where the coyotes sang you to sleep and the robins sang you awake!
But we drove over in the snow storm and took a look at it. And there it was. Our farmhouse. Built in 1849, it was once nestled on forty acres. The foundations from the smoke house and the summer kitchen were still visible in the yard, and the brick chimney rose high into the air with great dignity. I could almost smell wood smoke and freshly baked bread as I walked through the home in wonderment. Who lived here once upon a time? What was it like then? Quietly the Mullet River streamed by just out the front door, and a bright red cardinal chimed in as if to welcome us home.
We made an offer that day and it was accepted. I was overjoyed. The farmhouse sits on just enough acreage for me to have some chickens and a sturdy vegetable garden. Located in the northern Kettle Moraine forest, there are horse trails just outside my front door! Not far from my front porch is a state museum where live interpreters live in 1860. All day long I hear the rooster crow, the blacksmith clang away on a piece of iron (and one of the blacksmiths is my husband), or the sawmill fire up to cut down some lumber. Sheep graze upon the hill and a new mother mare nurses her small foal. Now I no longer miss the morning; when I rise I am greeted with living history out my front door and the countryside just out my back door. Coffee once again teases my nose, and the birds sing good morning to me as I ease my way onto my front porch to greet them.