homesteading

Necessary Pruning

The other day I was trying to get rid of the weeds and bramble around the cabin. I was using a large tool that got extremely heavy the longer I pruned. Doing the job became more of a chore than what I had planned.

Once I was finished I turned around and noticed I hadn’t gotten the thicker sticks close to the ground at all. I was trying to make sure they were removed so no one would trip over them. I cut some more. I Looked again and thought, wow changing my perspective and looking from a different angle I could once again, see how poorly I had pruned.

This got me thinking about when God prunes me. It hurts to be pruned and when I think God has nothing more to get rid of, I can see more areas that need my flesh removed. He is faithful and continues to remove the ugly things in my life that trip me up. Granted this takes time and He knows exactly when and what to prune at the moment I need it. If He were to do it all at once, I would not survive. But, in His omniscience He knows as I grow and mature, I can handle the next pruning.

I now realize pruning is much needed and as the ugly things of my life disappear, I know one day I will be a beautiful tree producing godly fruit for all to partake of.

God is everywhere and He shows me biblical things daily. What has He shown you lately?

“A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit.” Matthew 7:18

We made rose petal jam with the wild roses on our property!
homesteading

Blessings Abound!

This has been a busy season and I am amazed by all the blessings God has given us!

It is awesome to see God’s people be the hands and feet that we all need. Here is an update on everything that has happened this past month…

  • Started the Selah Cabin
  • Enjoyed many guests
  • Two huge garden spots cleared
  • Planted herbs in our herb garden
  • Land cleared
  • Bigger and better water filtration system installed

These are just some of the highlights! As my book Beautiful Dependence talks about the need for God first and others second, we are seeing this lived out.

We could not have done this without the help and support of others. Sometimes I just sit back in shock and awe of all the things surrounding me. Not only do we live in a beautiful place, but we have wonderful people who care for us and some who even venture up the mountain and experience life with us.

Tears streamed down my face one night as I ventured out to the new cabin. God has supplied everything; Not only the building supplies, a fantastic wood stove refurbished by my brother-in-law, windows, flooring, cabinets, and so much more.

How is this possible with how crazy our world is? I can tell you it’s because God is bigger and mightier than we can fathom. He gives us exceedingly abundantly beyond what we could think or hope for.

Do I have a new view of life after cancer? You bet I do! Enjoy every moment. Enjoy every sunrise and sunset. Enjoy the laughter. Enjoy sitting and talking with those around you. God is good. He wants to share His goodness with us. Stop. Listen. Breathe and Praise Him for his goodness!

“Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!” Psalm 34:8

Our daughter getting a tractor lesson from a guest who brought this machine up!
homesteading

Rest is a Weapon…

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

We had a beautiful day up here on the mountain so my husband and I went for a much needed walk. My naturopath said that vitamin D is an essential part of health and building up the immune system.

Stopping to take some time in nature and to see the near future build site of another cabin was a blessing (even after trudging through a foot of snow in some places).

Every day I am amazed at what God has done and is doing up here. This has been a dream for so long and although we saw some of the dream as a reality that started many years ago, now we are seeing Him actually finish what He started. Which is exactly what He said He would do when we left Mexico.

In the midst of this crazy last year with COVID, cancer, and even death, people are coming to the property and finding the peace and rest they have longed for and sometimes didn’t even know they were missing.

God’s timing is awe striking and when I reflect back and see a family or guest leave and another one comes an hour later (sometimes unannounced) we always, somehow have room. Not only that, but when we are on the brink of feeling exhausted, we get a break in the schedule and have time to rejuvenate.

Our little cabin in the woods.

I am also learning to take time out and just rest. There are always things to be done on the property, but with “Doctor’s orders” just finding time to meditate and do deep breathing exercises has helped my stress levels tremendously. Not only that but, it helps get the lymph system moving and brings oxygen to cancer cells, which cancer cells hate, and end up dying. One of our pastor’s tells us that rest is weapon. I am beginning to believe that.

I am learning so much on this cancer journey. God gave our bodies the ability to heal themselves with proper nutrition and rest. I am seeing areas of my life where I struggled and had made bad decisions and started bad habits.

I am So thankful that God did not leave me where I was and that He has placed the proper people and information at my fingertips to blaze ahead and leave the old self behind.

homesteading

Why a Vertical Log Cabin?

It has begun! What a few weeks it has been. After my mother’s passing, I needed something to cheer me up and this certainly has done the trick.

We started work on a cabin for our youngest daughter and her husband, which will also serve as a guest cabin! This has been a project my husband and I have thought long and hard about because it is not a normal log cabin with horizontal logs-it is a vertical log cabin otherwise called stockade style.

Why build vertical instead of the traditional way? We have had this question asked numerous times in the past week, so I decided to explain our thinking behind it. There are many reasons why we wanted to build a cabin like this. Here are some of the reasons:

  • The need for large or heavy equipment is reduced or not needed at all because of the length of the logs.
  • Vertical log shells can be built in half the time as horizontal shells.
  • The logs we are using are 10 feet to go from floor to ceiling verses having to use 24 foot logs for the whole length of the cabin. Two people can easily carry the 10 foot logs. (Which is great for us who aren’t as young as we used to be!)
  • Due to the direction of the cracks that may form in a log, virtually none of the cracks in a vertical log home will direct water infiltration back into the home which can happen with a horizontal log home.
  • Windows and doors can be installed directly to the logs with no worries about settling or shrinkage of the walls since logs do not shrink vertically.
  • Wiring can be installed easily between the logs where as with a horizontal log wall, each log has to be drilled to allow the wire to pass through.
  • Last but not least I like to think outside the box and I really like the look of the vertical logs.

I’m sure I will be posting more photos of our journey through this process. It has been great seeing everyone come together and share their strengths in working on this project.

“Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labor.” Ecclesiastes 4:9

homesteading

You Never Know…

You never know what an impact you will have on someone’s life. We have had several guests at the cabin lately. It’s been a little crazy and we never know what a day will look like.

Last night I sat down with one of our guests and as the day turned into night I started lighting candles, then the kerosene lantern. The conversation was rich. We talked about life, simplicity of daily living at the cabin, and most important our relationship with God which spills out on those around us.

As we were talking her daughter sat down in the wicker rocking chair and started to express her joy and thankfulness that she was able to come for a visit. She said, “It’s so peaceful here and I feel like I’m living like Laura Ingalls in Little House on the Prairie.” She then said, “I also love how I can talk to your family about anything.” (My heart leapt at that moment.)

What she didn’t know was that I was a little nervous about her family coming because we live a rustic lifestyle. Outhouses, hauling water, heating water on a stove for showers, hand watering a large garden, etc. Although they read my book Beautiful Dependence, reading and experiencing off-grid living are two different things. We can easily romanticize something we read about or see on YouTube.

This family came and got to experience Cherith Brook. They were so grateful for so many things at our little hide away. Why? Because they had just been on a camping/backpacking trip. They were eating MRE packs (Meals Ready to Eat), they had no access to showers, and had to use an outside bathroom with no walls.

By the time they arrived at our place, we had a hot meal for them with ‘real’ food, a warm bed, hot showers, fresh drinking water from our spring, and an outdoor bathroom with walls!

Thankfulness is the key to contentment in life. Here, I was concerned that our property would be too rustic. It ended up being a luxurious get away and a place to refresh as they continued their ‘outdoor’ adventures for the next few days.

Again, you just never know what’s going to happen or what an impact you will have on a person’s life. I think of Jesus and how one conversation changed so many lives…the blind man, the woman at the well, the lame man, etc. One conversation. One small moment in time can change a person’s life for all eternity.

Eph 4:29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.