Transformations

Do you believe it?

Ralph Waldo Emerson’s sentiment that “Life is a journey, not a destination” ?

I was going to wait until I’d fully reached my destination to share some parts of my life with you. I figured who wants to hear about the journey? Ho hum, right? Well, it’s going to be a while until I reach my destination. I may never. So, here’s my life as is.

Small things are changing with me. Things like what I keep in my front right pocket at all times. I used to keep nothing there. I mean, why would I put something in my front pocket that could actually create a visible pooch? But now. I have something in there that is the first thing in, the last thing out every single day.

What is it?

I use this knife many many times every day. When I first moved here, and needed my pocket knife constantly, I learned to put it in my pocket in the morning. I’d put it in any pocket at all….front jeans, back jeans, shirt, jacket, just anywhere. I’ve now learned to put it in the same pocket every single day. That way I don’t fumble for it when I need it. Yep, that’s what is in my right front jean pocket, adding a pooch.

I close my eyes and I can see my father using his pocket knife to whittle a wood stick, cut an apple, slice the tape on a gift on Christmas morning. He’s always got it handy. The other day I went out to that back small shed behind our farmhouse and saw a piece of wood, carved on the ends, stuck in the hinge to hold the door shut. My Daddy was here a few weeks ago. That’s his handiwork. Him and his pocket knife.

I laughed when the truth of the transformation hit me. I emptied out my bluejean pockets one recent night. There was the knife, a guitar pick and crumpled-up hay that had found its way in there. Who is this person?

Part of this journey and transformation is pain. Physical strain. The reality of life in the country is being outside more, moving more, using muscles I didn’t even know I had, straining parts of me. Yes, here’s the reality.

I hope as I get stronger and in better shape, the pain will lessen. In the meantime, I’ll take it. It is all worth it.

My farmhouse is also undergoing a transformation. I was planning to wait until we are finished with renovations to show you the house. But since it’s all about the journey and not the destination, how about I show you the BEFORE and DURING photos. I’m not sure when there will be AFTER ones.

Remember the upstairs middle bedroom?

(Blue the Dog checking it out)

We are working to transform it into the master bath. ‘Taint easy.

We ripped up the carpet and are putting in hardwood floors.

We opened up the closet to the right side of the fireplace and made it a walk-thru to an adjoining bedroom. We popped up the ceiling and added an octagon trey.

The free-standing tub will go under the window.

And that will be the toilet room to the right.

We created a shower in the other corner.

The sink will go here. I’m using an old buffet we bought at a flea market when we first got married. I think we paid $25 for it. And can you see all that beautiful original board on the walls? We found that under the wallpaper and sheetrock. That was truly one of the most exciting days of this project, the day we found those boards. :)

I picked out Benjamin Moore’s color, Gray Owl. Very calming, very delightful. And I really want to white wash that brick fireplace, but haven’t gotten the courage to do it yet. It’s so permanent. I’m thinking the browns and tans just look like yuck against the whites and grays though. Courage, courage, give me some courage! Should I?

And remember the other bedroom? The blue wallpaper bedroom? It is one of the adjoining bedrooms.

We are transforming that one into a master closet/sitting area. Shooo-weee. This is the journey.

More transformations.

Yes, I am as tired as I look. (Wasn’t a good sleeper before, but now I’m sleeping on the floor. I’m a no sleeper now.)

And yes indeedy that was George Jones you heard playing too loudly in my car.

And yes, that is indeed hay in my hair. My hair is like a hay magnet. I went to a board of education meeting and looked down and saw a small piece of straw in my hair. It reminded me of when I crossed my leg at church or a meeting and saw a dried cheerio stuck to my hose. I thought, “Yep! I’m a mom.”

And you got that right, I am horse crazy. That’s so NOT me. Or, wasn’t me. And yet, here I am, daydreaming about riding off into the front meadow on my horse, my husband beside me on his, and my daughter bringing up the read on hers. The mountain stream rushes beside us. And maybe there’s snow on the ground. Yes, snow! The sky is so blue it matches my daughter’s eyes, and the meadow is a rich green matching my husband’s eyes….ayah!….snap out of it!

Several months ago, I shared wtih you my doubts about whether I was tough enough. The answer is yes, I am. I guess we all have it deep within us to accomplish our dreams. Just gotta find the well.

How do I know? I just do. I walk in the dark morning to the dark barn and put my hands on things I cannot see. I would not have walked in that barn alone in the daylight three months ago.

I was in the barn the other day and looked over and looking right back at me was the biggest spider I’ve EVER seen. I’m telling you, he was the size of a small mouse. Three months ago I would have been screaming and carrying on and would have run to the house to get my husband. Instead, I stood there and thought, “hmmm, can I co-exist with you in my barn?” The answer became clear. “No, I cannot.” I don’t take that answer lightly because I try not to take life ever. But, since that was the answer, I leaned down and picked up an old board laying beside me and slam. Crunch. (you wouldn’t have believed the crunch.) Do you know that I haven’t even mentioned that to my husband. Transformation.

Introducing me.

I am on a journey. I learn something new every day. Every morning, I can’t wait to get up off the floor (one day it will be a bed again) and live the day. No, I’m not ready to reach my destination, I am ENJOYING THE RIDE too much.

Talk to me.

Until next time, Friends, savor the flavor of life!

Lots of love, The City Farmgirl, Rebekah

www.rebekahteal.com

Leave a comment 22 Comments

  1. Cindy says:

    I love this post! Yes, the courage to transform is something I am very well acquainted with. After divorcing two years ago I found myself handling life situations that I would NEVER have believed I could handle. I am a completely different woman now…and I like me. A lot! Whether it’s staring down a big spider, or staring down any other number of personal demons, the courage is the same… no, you cannot stay and rule my life. Be gone! I also pared down my life to where I don’t need the things I thought I needed before. This alone is SO freeing, isn’t it? My father always carried his pocket knife with him, as well. He was a whittler and a fixer, and he was never without that knife. I remember him peeling an apple in one long beautiful strip. That always delighted me! I thought he could do anything!

    I love your blog, Rebekah! You speak from a place that resonates with me. I so love following your farmhouse updates. You are living a blessed life!

  2. Lisa H says:

    Rebekah, I like the journey so much more than the destination. It is like a vacation. I get as much joy out of planning where we will go and what we will do as I do actually the going and the doing. I really think it all comes down to a few "A" words. The first being anticipation. The anticipation of learning something new. The anticipation of working on a project. The anticipation of what it will look like when we are done. The anticipation of adding another furry creature to the family. Wouldn’t life be boring without it? The next "A" word that comes to mind is adventure. You have an adventurous spirit that is radiating and catching. This spirit drives you to be open to new things and new challenges. What would a journey be without adventure? Another "A" word that comes to mind for our journey is adaptation. If we are going to enjoy this journey we have to learn to adapt to our new environment and find the positives of our situation as we go. Lastly, I think we also have to Accept where we are so we can Appreciate where we are going. If you were getting a grade for your new life project it would be an "A". Don’t you agree? :-)

  3. Nancy says:

    Oh my, the spider thing. I used to freeze. Yes I slammed a great big white one about three weeks ago and it not only crunched but it splatted a brown goo all over the porch wall that I waited to show to my hubby to prove I’d taken care of the beast. It’s cleaned off now. I love when you do something I am just doing too, happy farming. Xox Nancy

  4. Rene Foust says:

    Rebekah I completely understand how you just know that you have it in you now. I was so completely put to the test this past spring and I almost failed it. But with a little help and a ton of will (lots of tears) I made it and now I know I have what it takes too! Good luck to you and your family on your new and wonderful adventure it is so great to watch the transformation.

  5. Jeanne says:

    Thank you for taking us along on your journey and not waiting for the destination.
    Yes, white wash the fireplace. It will transform the room to complete serenity. Love, love. love what you are doing with the farmhouse. It will be worth the wait. Many blessings…

  6. Mary Rauch says:

    Please, please, just for me, don’t whitewash the fireplace. Even if you loved it at the very first, please think ahead to those misty trails of carbon (smoke) that will rise out and up the front over the coming years. I think the stained whitewashed brick will be somewhat unattractive in time. Maybe you will think about it longer? It looks nice (to me) as it is (but it’s not my decision is it?)
    I, too, have a small device that cuts, gouges, screws,and punches that I carry at all times. Don’t know what others do without these all-purpose items in a pocket, purse or tote bag.
    Are you and your DH still employed? I keep wondering how you have enough hours in the day to do all this work?
    I hope your daughter is happy at school. The whole moving experience must be awesome for her.

  7. junebug says:

    I’m so enjoying your journey. You are living my dream of the country life. So I will be one faithful follower of the ride!!

  8. Lorrie MacKenzie says:

    Your blog is so fun to read! I totally admire you because you went for your dream and, despite the adjustments, are happy and willing to put in the effort it takes. I can’t wait to see what happens next. I want to hear everything!

  9. Sharon says:

    I know you have the courage to continue your transformation on this journey and can and will do what ever you set your heart on doing. Keep it up! Your courageous is contageous and helping me to face some decisons and changes I have known were necessary but was too afraid to face. Thank you!

  10. Nicole White says:

    Your post made me cry. Beautiful. I’m learning to go from country to suburbia, not easy, but I’m adapting. Getting a small hen house to shelter a few chicks today. I think I’m as chicken crazy as you are horse crazy. Learning to back yard farm on 1/3 of an acre. Learning to find the beauty in the noise and traffic of a large metropolis. The sunrise over the soaring mountains is incredible, the people friendly at the dump where I was dropping off my yard waste (to be made into compost) and picking up rich compost, the sun is shining… Thank you for sharing a glimpse into your transformation. It is lovely.

  11. Hello Rebekah, things are looking great. I am enjoying the journey with you. I did my old fireplace in a taupe color, (so the soot and smoke do not show up so much), it goes well with anything the whitewash would go with. Just a thought….. keep up the good work. cant wait to get to the final destination one day with you. Be Blessed. Vivian

  12. Brenda says:

    love reading how things are going. country life is hard, rewarding but hard when you have to start from the start but it sounds like it is your cup of tea. enjoy each step those are the memories that will make it all worth it

  13. Cathy says:

    Very inspiring Rebekah! I know you’ll withstand and overcome anything that comes your way…..

  14. Diane Van Horn says:

    Whitewash that brick-you will love it!
    Love this post. It is all about the journey and it’s the hard that makes it great! Look forward to more of your journey!

  15. meredith (hereford girl) says:

    I knew you were strong enough- you just have to WANT IT that badly. And the spider crunch- its gross. Every time. EEEWWW. Loved your post- your enthusiasm makes me thankful I am a farm girl!

  16. This post is so heartening. It really is amazing how we manage to grow into whatever is needed of us. At some point in life, we have the luxury of screaming for someone else to take care of the spiders. But when we realize that there’s no one else, we find we have the strength and courage to do it. We may even, someday, remember that the spider eats pests, so we learn to nudge him into a jar and take him to a safer place.

    Yeah, that one takes a while. And none of us is capable of doing EVERYTHING. But every step of the journey makes us stronger.

    I love hearing how you are growing into your farm. I’m living my dream vicariously through you, so keep enjoying it!

  17. Denise Ross says:

    Thanks for your beautiful blog Rebekah. I love that you took the risk in following your dream. This is the first time I’ve read your blog. I love it. Keep enjoying the journey God bless

  18. Mary Pitman says:

    Oh, the joy of being a farmwife or country girl. My husband is not a farmer, but we do live on 35 acres, in the woods of Oklahoma. Love it here! So many things to do and see, with nature, and sharing those with granddaughters is so awesome!!!
    Thanks so much for your blog. Love it….and thanks for sharing your daily life. It’s so awesome to see others enjoy the country life, too.

  19. Judy from Maine says:

    Have you thought of facing the brick wall with some repurposed barn boards? These could be white washed or left natural in their "grayed" state. Then in the future if you wanted the brick back, it would only be a matter of removing the facing…best of both worlds! Love your blog, my hubby and I made our move north, dropping out of city life 30 years ago and have never looked back.

  20. Brenda says:

    Well that was a very heartfelt post! So glad you are enjoying your ride. I took up a new ride myself. I have joined weight watchers this past month. Nothing to report except it was suggested by one of my doctors and I have decided to go for it. I probably need to loose around 25 pounds but he only wants me to loose 5 before more blood test are drawn. I am not going to stop with that 5. I want to feel fit again even at this over 50 age. I have also started to work out again for the first time in about 2 years. Not every day because my joints are arguing with me but at least every other day. So I am going through a change of lifestyle I would guess of my own but I really hope to make my destination sooner than you do. Have a great weekend!

  21. Debbie says:

    I never doubted you for a minute!!! I love the new you!
    One night in the middle of the summer my husband found grass on my pillow as he was leaning over to kiss me goodnight…
    He laughed and said, goodnight farmgirl…Must have fallen out of my hair. I’ve been known to show up and the grocery store with leaves in my hair and dirt on my shoes and face after a long day of gardening. I personally love the journey… that’s what life is all about!
    Sending love and oh, here’s a little courage for white washing that fireplace! I think it would look great like that!

  22. Cathy R says:

    So delighted you love the country and all that goes with it! LOL about the spider! I vote for white-washing the brick ~ if it gets smoky ~ do it again! You are such a great writer ~ thanks so very much for sharing your journey with us! Heartwarming! Blessings from a kindredspirit in the hills of Idaho! Cathy R

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