You Are My Sunshine

Natures Botanical Gardens, Spring Hill, Florida. Photo courtesy of Jen Carter Photography.

My Only Sunshine

Natures Botanical Gardens, Spring Hill, Florida. Photo courtesy of Jen Carter Photography.

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19 September, 2015

A Whole New World.... What were we thinking???

We have been on the homestead for about two months now. It has been an adjustment on so many levels.

At our previous residence we enjoyed regular tv, unlimited long distance, and high speed internet. Out here we have satellite tv, I have a long distance plan that requires me to dial "1", and our high speed internet runs at a whopping SIX mps. And yes, every time it rains hard, the satellite goes in and out.

I'm a fairly lazy person and I hate being outside in the heat and bugs, so I made sure to take on as many animals as humanly possible as quickly as possible. The herd consists of five dogs, two cats, two horses, six turkeys, two ducks, five chickens and one adorable pot bellied pig. All of these animals must be fed or let out every morning, and some are more demanding about the feeding schedule than others. And the herd is growing. No matter WHAT my Husband tells you - or me.

I've also managed to buy a bazillion books and magazines. I should be proficient in maintaining a garden, raising livestock, horse care, and making bread and cheese shortly. If not, I have more reference books and magazines than I can possibly count at this point.

As for the house... I have a board. It was COVERED in ideas for the remodel. After the first month of no cable, I was able to narrow it down, but only because I had stared at it for hours. And we chose our house paint by posting it on Facebook, because well, that's how all major decisions are made these days.

This has been a crazy summer. We have burned so many trees, trash, and other things - but it's been really neat to be able to have a big bonfire whenever we want.

Another thing that's seriously amazing is how much your relatives visit. I've had more visitors in the last two months than I EVER did at my other homes. I think people really enjoy just being able to "BE", if that makes any sense. It helps that it's absolutely beautiful out here. You don't even have to talk or entertain - which is great because I suck at both when it comes to playing hostess.

This has also been the summer of sweat, steroids, eczema, and chigger bites. It has been ungodly hot. I finally learned what "under boob sweat" is. I hate it. It took 37 years to learn about this female phenomenon, because this is the first time in my life I've taken steroids in this amount, and I have to expanding waist line to prove it - this also including an expanding bra size. I'd be happier about it if my muffin top wasn't keeping up with my boobs. I'm just sayin'....

I was also finally diagnosed with dishydrotic eczema. It only took 942 doctor visits for someone to finally say it. I have called every good Southern woman I know so see if she is aware of some moldy rotten something or other than I can put on it to heal it. Apparently NOBODY knows what causes this or how to cure it. So, seven rounds of steroids later, and a really good round of dog slobber, it seems to be getting better. I'm 15 pounds heavier, my face is now round instead of oblong, and I can eat like nobody's business, but I am not trying to remove all of the skin on my hands, and I don't look as much like I have some creeping funk like I did back in February. THANK. GOD.

Let's talk chiggers while I seem to be on a complaining rampage here.... We came to look at this property for the first time and I wore jeans and a tank top. We walked the property and checked out the house. I went home that evening and fell asleep on my couch. Chiggers suck. The SEVENTY TWO bites (and two tiny baby ticks) that I woke up with in my bikini line sucked even worse. "Chigger vagina" has become a running joke around here. I have since also had "chigger armpit", "chigger calf/thigh", "chigger buttocks", "chigger bra line" and "chigger armpit". AND, I nearly had a nervous breakdown in the shower after discovering my first BIG tick behind my knee. Luckily my husband was off and works in surgery and could remove it. (I know you don't have to work in surgery to remove a tick, but it sure made me feel better.)

Despite the fact that we need to finish the house, the animals are demanding, and I've spent most of the summer itching from one thing or another, I still walk out of my house and can't believe I really live here. I wouldn't trade this new chapter of my life for anything. I love the fact that I have new ways to bond with my daughter, and we're both getting our childhood dreams fulfilled.

Every day is a blessing and an adventure.
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