About,  All The Feels,  On The 'Stead

The Awkward ‘About’ Section

Greetings friends! Welcome to my corner of the universe. Seeing as how I missed out in the online dating era, I figure this is my best opportunity to write that ever-so-awkward about me section. 

I’m 32 years old! Sporting my first few grays and really doubling down on wearing SPF and night creams.

I’m married to the perfect cross between Ron Swanson and Andy Dwyer for you Parks and Rec fans. Garret has a big beard, big heart and lots of camo.

I grew up in Brooklyn and was raised by my grandmother in a brownstone in the ‘not at all badass’ parts of Brooklyn. Like if the spectrum of Brooklyn is skinny jeans to my cousin vinny..this is the area of skinny jeans. The New York Times wrote an article about the militant food co-op down the block and how it was bullying the neighborhood, so there’s that.

I became a social worker in 2012, and started my career in refugee resettlement before transitioning to working in service learning at Princeton in 2017. Our campus thinks a lot about sustainability, so when my amazing husband and I starting house hunting, we had already begun thinking about where we might live in a way that was better for us as a family- and for our world at large.

The Homestead

I can’t even type that without giggling. Let’s keep it real; I live in New Jersey. I drive a camry. I work at Princeton. This is not some little house on the prairie shit. 

We live on just under 2 acres in Ringoes, New Jersey. Which. Is. GORGEOUS. All of your preconceptions about New Jersey? I’ve got a compost heap where you can stick ‘em. 

Our land is in the shape of an L- a long hill down that extends out the back, then you take a hop over our creek and you’re in this side section with the most random vineyard ever. We have no idea why it’s there but I’m 100% down. There’s also a 2 story barn on the property and we’re surrounded by other small farm-ish homes, all of whom have chickens and cause me to currently have mega FOMC (fear of missing chickens). 

These are not my chickens. These chickens have boundary issues.

Two fun notes about our neighbors: 

  1. Everyone’s chickens have boundary issues so they run amok, which drives Garret crazy but I secretly love it
  2. I apparently live in Whoville because all of my neighbors names rhyme. I’ve got Dave, Dave, Wendy, Mandy, Randy, Debbie and Ed. And a partridge. And 2 pear trees. 

Bloggin’

I don’t want to say this is an anti-homestead blog, (I’m not here preaching how great factory farming is and mounting a war on sea turtles), but just a picture of what it looks like to do this, without the filter.

In trolling the web, I’ve found a lot of homesteading blogs that are ahhhmazing. Like these women shit rainbows while churning butter; it’s incredible. It also is not me. Most homesteading blogs seem to be written by women who look like this: 

…. Meanwhile. I’m in sweatpants on my couch with a bottle of wine, scrolling through these accounts like this:

So. In an effort to recognize that half the shit we see on social media is perhaps a weeee bit of a glorification of people’s lives, I wanted to create a space outside of that.

I wanted to create a space to talk about the reality of it; what it means to make a huge transition, to have a conversation about your values and privilege and fear, to fall on your face.. without selling fit tea or other bullshit.

I am not an expert homesteader. That’s cool with me. But I’m throwing myself into this, and falling in love with it, head over heels.

So if you came here for my expert opinion on how to compost your beeswax organic kale smoothie- fucked if I know. Good luck with that. 

If you came here because you’re looking for a peek behind the curtain- buckle up and welcome to my circus.

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