“Land, home, farm, family–you and me doing all of this.”
Hello! My name is Kelin, and that quote just above is how my husband, Brian, asked me to be his life partner 15 years ago. Naturally I said yes. We both valued making. He, at that time, was finishing up his Fine Art degree, and I was in college for English. We dreamed of owning a little plot of land, setting-up a homestead, and growing a family.
As we graduated, he transitioned his B.F.A into mechanical and design engineering while I continued cooking in professional kitchens, as I had done during college, until we had our second child.
As a stay-at-home-parent, I dedicated myself to homesteading, eventually selling products at local farmer’s markets and farm stores. But, life took a turn, and I opted to return to school to pick-up a dream I had dropped when Brian proposed: I wanted my graduate degree in English and longed to find a permanent role inside higher education.
Graduate school with a young family is not so easy, as it turns out, and life continued to turn and rock us in surprising ways. We still gardened, but I lacked time and energy to bake, cook, can, and continue doing all the other homestead tasks I loved.
It’s been a bumpy few years. We’ve lost loved ones, and jobs. There’s a global pandemic. Our mental health continues to press and pull on us in sometimes divergent directions. Through it all, though, we’re a family and we love being together and making together.
We do not homestead to make money or because it even saves us money (though it does do that). We actively want to push against the narrative that a hobby has to earn you something to be considered time well spent. Put simply, when we homestead, we feel good. We do this because it’s who we are and we can’t imagine life any other way.