When we bought this farm 6 years ago I was looking for an escape from my working life. We had a small place ,15 acres and a house. It was on my husbands family farm. After his stepdad died we moved his mom on the back 5 acres. I love his mom but this was too close for me. We also had his cousin next door and his brother within rock throwing distance.
We found a hen farm about 3miles down the road for a steal. It already had a contract on it but we went ahead and put in a backup contract .It was 29 acres and 2 hen houses .There was a small double wide trailer on the farm. The other contract fell through at closing so we got the farm.The plan was to move someone into the trailer to help take care of the farm. We would continue living at the house untill we could build on the farm. How did that go? Not too well...
3 years into the "plan" we decided we had to sell the small farm . Our help didn't work out and I was spending more time at the hen farm than at home . The house sold and what little we made we sunk into fixing things at the hen houses. One month after we spent several thousands of dollars my husband lost his job. He was at the top of his profession and there are not many job openings for Fire Chief. He decided to go into business with his brother(mistake) mowing grass.They basically went broke in the second season when the fuel prices went through the roof.So here we are 6 years into the "plan" barely making ends meet and living in a broken down double wide. The biggest problem we have is we lived the "American" way. We spent what we made.When the job loss/pay decrease hit it put us in a downward spiral.We make good money with the hens, but the banks will only finance farms for a short period .That's alot of money to pay back in a short time so our payments on the farm are huge. We also only get a check monthly for 9 months.We have not yet had time to adjust for this since the job loss. We keep having to play catch up, not to mention with the bad economy we were without chickens for 3 months instead of 6weeks ,so this year we have been without a pay check since Oct. Here we are broke, living in an old trailer with a leaky roof on 29 of the most beautiful acres in the county.
Time to take hold and stop this snowball. We are happy but I can't say there is less stress. Until I get control of the finances again there is stress! We have decided to try and simplify our lives and live on less to keep the life style that makes us happy.