"Be so busy loving your life that you have no time for hate, regret, or fear."

~Author Unknown~ 

This quote speaks to my heart!  It describes perfectly how we have brought in the new year on our homestead and sums up exactly how we plan to live out our year here on 3 Corners Farm.

If you are new to us, our family of five lives on a small modern-day homestead in Oregon where we live out our dreams of running a micro-farm and existing as naturally as possible with nature.  I love to share all the stories, details, and adventures of this lifestyle once a month through this blog, so I hope my readers enjoy tagging along with us throughout our journey.

December Challenges

Before I share what's coming up next for us, I will first catch you up on the December we had because it was a doozy of a month! It landed us smack dab into 2023 with a large dose of appreciation for our comforts and for each other. 

First, we started December with snow and chilly temperatures, but nothing wild. Travis was able to have one good, cold but dry day, to install some of the ceiling in our eldest son's tiny house on the property.  (Our son had to work so Travis decided to tackle as much as he could without him.)

Soon after that our second son and middle child Blake, was hit like a bash on the head with the flu! It was rough but he endured it like a storm and thankfully there were no complications for him. He was able to slowly recover after several days of high fevers and congestion.

When that hurdle was jumped, we landed our feet on a solid sheet of ice that appeared to me to have reached across the entire continent of North America, and then some! The temperatures plunged and remained at five degrees Fahrenheit with freezing rain falling from the sky.

Ice From the Sky Coated Everything.

The roads and freeways were shut down all around us and upon stepping outside, we learned how to ice skate, skid, slide, and slip our way around the farm.

As if we weren't already having enough fun tending to farm animals with freezing fingers and nose hairs, the power went out for five hours while we were sleeping during the first night of single-digit temperatures, which caused the well house pipes to freeze!

Thankfully the power returned by morning, but Travis now had to slowly warm up the pipes, and we had to make do without running water for a few days. 

Stepping Back to the Old Ways 

Now to be truthful, I love a good homesteading challenge!  I was grateful for the work it takes to keep the fire burning and snow melting on the hot stove top for dishwashing. We are smart enough to always have a large stash of bottled water on the homestead for drinking and cooking, but if there is good clean snow outside, why not use it?  Thank you, Mother Nature!

I have always had a fascination and love of the old ways.  I love to read and glean ideas from books written by the Amish and many other classics that share how it is possible to live in harmony with nature as our ancestors did. It is a humbling and rewarding experience that always grounds me to live deeply, slowly, and with gratitude in each moment.

This was not the first time the power went out or the well was not working, and it probably is not going to be the last, so we always try to be prepared with everything from having adequate food storage, spare water, animal feed, and medications or other supplies. In the meantime, the temperatures were still in the single digits and there was practically a swarm of hummingbirds outside our windows, begging for mercy.  Just filling, or thawing, and replacing their feeders of sugar water was a full-time job, not to mention keeping the outside animals consistently fed to keep them warm.  We also left oat feed sprinkled around our property for the birds and local deer who were struggling in the frigid cold.

Brrr, So Cold!

Our hours and days were full, and it left no time for worry or stress. It brought me happiness to be able to meet everyone's needs, and when it grew dark, we enjoyed a little downtime before starting all over again with prayers that each of us would stay healthy and well to fulfill our roles in the rig amoral of chores on ice.

 Merry Christmas!

Glory to God, we made it through the ice storm just in time to enjoy Christmas, and many thanks go out to Travis who got the water flowing again.  What a gift! We are humbled and reminded not to take water for granted, or anything for that matter.

Buckets of Snow Melt on The Hot Stove Top.

Our Christmas was beautiful and simple.  All three of our kids bought gifts for one another, and for Travis and me, which was very touching.  Every single animal received a gift too.  From molasses cookie pieces for the horses (their favorite treat), plus oats and alfalfa hay for all the pasture gang, to veggies and fruits for the chickens and the bunny, no one was left out. The dogs and cats had stockings with goodies, too, and then we feasted and rested to our hearts' content.

It would have been lovely to be able to spend time with some of our extended family members, but that is not always possible, so we reveled in the company of those under our roof. We played a few games, watched a few Christmas classics, and had a lot of laughs.

What more can anyone ever ask for?

 Bringing In the New Year!

The week after Christmas brought forth more tolerable weather, with warmer temperatures.  The sun even came out for part of a day and melted most of the ice! The temperatures made it back up into the 30s and life was settling down again.

On New Year’s Eve, we were exhausted but content. 

Currently, our youngest, Megan, is having a turn with the flu so we're kind of put back in our place of being homebodies, but I am grateful at least that our kids had a few chances to enjoy movies and get-togethers with friends throughout everything.

Our animals are doing well. Willow, our old mare is overdue for hoof trimmings that had to be canceled due to the roads being treacherous, but the appointment is rescheduled so we will have her hooves back on track soon. Teddy, our old Labrador, ripped a nail off somehow while outside in the snow recently.  I had to spray wound spay on it, dip it in corn starch to stop the bleeding, then I wrapped it in gauze and repeated this twice daily for three days.  He is now on the mend. On a farm, even a small farm such as ours, sometimes you must learn how to be your own vet just for times such as these when the roads are impassable or receiving vet care may take too long. 

Willow and Joe Joe

So... phew! We made it to, today.  It's a whole new start, in a whole new year, and we are fortunate to be living in this lifetime and be a part of it all! 

What's Next?

As soon as we are all well under our roof and get the chance to play a little catch-up, we will start prepping the new homestead greenhouse for planting and hopefully will do a few more touch-ups in the tiny house and our main house as well (since we are living with subflooring in the bedrooms right now.) Tis the season for indoor projects.

I will keep you posted!

So, until my next blog posting, be sure to, "Be so busy loving your life that you have no time for hate, regret, or fear." 

Stay well and be blessed, 

Amy E. Darr

3 Corners Farm

Mosier OR, U.S.A.