Yearly Update

I realized it’s been a whole year since I posted a public blog.

And what a year it has been!

Full of so much. New baby, new home, new pathways we never expected. Some great times and scary, sad times. Through it all, we just keep living and pushing forward. Sometimes, all you can do is try.

Photo Credit: Phillip Haumesser

Stephen arrived with little fanfare. It was a trying pregnancy. Full of shots (over 400) and monthly ultrasounds. And then one day, just like that, he came rushing into the world. He’s healthy and strong and as big as an Ox. Well, nearly. He turns 8 months on Thursday and is already tipping the scales at 22 pounds. He’s joyous, mellow and has brought so much light to our home. I never imagined more children. And now I can’t imagine life without him.

Photo Credit: Phillip Haumesser

Xavier is a freshman in High School. He chose to go back to public school. It has been better than our wildest expectations! He’s on student council, FFA, lightman for the fall production and still pushing forward on his Eagle Scout goals. Grades are good, friends are plenty and he has even realized that girls may not be simply annoying.

Photo Credit: Phillip Haumesser

Ziva still recognizes the most simple beauties in life. The tiny bugs, the colorful pebble, the flowers and every bird in the sky. She reminds me to slow down and be in the moment. Her reading has improved greatly and she loves math! Her sass and creativity keeps us all on our toes.

Photo Credit: Phillip Haumesser

Zoe is getting her own post. But her spirit drives me. She is the strongest person I have ever met. Kind, loving and always thinking of someone other than herself. She’s inspiring to so many. I’m proud she’s my daughter.

Photo Credit: Phillip Haumesser

The farm is farming. No garden this year to speak of. We have some beets, greens and herbs out front. We cut back on animals and breeding. Trying to keep everything alive while making constant hospital trips has proven difficult. So we are being still right now as everything else works it way through. I did do some canning, despite swearing it off for a year. No matter where we go, we can always take a jar of “home” with us.

Jam Sessiom

I hope this update finds you all healthy and well.

All our love,

Patty and the Brat Pack

Phillip from Phillip Haumesser Photography is amazing! Check his work out here!

So It Begins


The rabbit water was frozen solid this morning. Even though I knew it was coming, it still leaves me a little sad. Winter on the homestead is often dreary. Chores take twice as long. There is frozen water to thaw. Animals need more hay and bedding to doled out. My garden, a source of relief and comfort, is now barren. The green is gone, replaced by dull browns and greys.

Granted, my winter list is long this year. We are adding fencing and clearing brush. I have a hog palace to build and solar to install. There are 30 lbs of assorted berries hiding in a freezer of a friend that need to be canned. I have wool to dye and spin. I also tend to do more writing in the winter months. Not that my poor blog can attest. I did concur Nano this year. I turned out roughly 60k in edited manuscript in just under 30 days. That’s really a feat considering all that goes on in this crazy house. Luckily, it was cold and by far the rainiest I have ever seen here. And the physical therapy on my arm continues as well. So heavy work is out for a while longer.

I won’t lie, I am wistful for spring to return.

But until then, I will be busy. And even though winter slows things down on the outside, they don’t stop. I have planted bulbs and root vegetables that will be ready as early as February. Despite my best fencing attempts, Blue still managed to get in with girls. So while St. Nick is visiting, I will be delivering roughly 30 piglets myself. The barn is already prepared, stuffed with hay and ready for babies. We have 11 bred goats that will begin their birthing the first week of March. Rabbits are scheduled to begin birthing in late February and I already have a wait list for eggs. …

The more I write about it, maybe having a few weeks of “rest” isn’t so bad after all!