Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Country Life

My parents moved our family from the smoggy San Bernardino, California area in 1969 to a country setting in Sandpoint, Idaho when I was just entering my 8th grade year.  At first I thought my way of life would never be as happy as it had been while we lived in California.  However, after adjusting to life in the country my teen energies became more and more channeled towards creating and I started to spend a lot more time in the great outdoors.  

I was soon skiing on the mountain above our home, hiking in the woods, and I learned to water ski on the Lake.  I also started to paint on driftwood and rocks 

and conks (fungus found on trees) 

that I found on my hikes in the woods and along the shore line of the lake.  My sister also started painting and so my father decided that we needed an art studio to sell our creations in.  The little shop was called "The Pocket" and was built right next to our home.  

If you were to peak into my life back then you'd often find me walking in the woods looking for things to paint on or quietly sitting by a stream playing my guitar or recorder (a type of wooden flute).  Not much time was spent in front of the TV though my parents did have one in the house.  

The other night we sat and talked with our adult children.  We talked of the wood mill and what is being created with it, we talked of plans for building, growing a lavender farm and other farm related subjects.  It was so much fun to discuss these plans and ideas with the family.  There was no need for worldly entertainments when such cool ideas were being bantered about with enthusiasm.  It was a sheer delight! 

As I look back over my life and consider the reasons why I have always chosen a country setting for my family I must admit that it was because of the home in the country my parents chose for me during my teen years. 

I think about where we live now I see the creative energies coming to life in those around me (husband, grown children, grandchildren and of course me).  Our time and energies are spent in gardening, building, milling, framing, landscaping, and yes my mind is even turned towards painting on natural things found in the woods.  

More often then not the outdoors calls each of us to explore and spend time outside from early morning to when the stars shine brightly at night.  I commune with my God about everything while out walking in the woods.  This quote has come to my mind:  

"I urge our people to make it their lifework to seek for spirituality. Christ is at the door. This is why I say to our people, Do not consider it a privation when you are called to leave the cities and move out into the country places. Here there await rich blessings for those who will grasp them. By beholding the scenes of nature, the works of the Creator, by studying God’s handiwork, imperceptibly you will be changed into the same image."—Manuscript 85, 1908. – {CL 14.5}. 

I pray that this will be my experience and those who come to spend time here.

Do you feel like you want more for you and your family?  If you sense time is fleeting and you want more depth in your families life I highly recommend country living.  Don't just dream about it.  Take some steps to make this a reality for your sake and for your children's sake.  Yes, there can be challenges as there were challenges for my family when we moved to Idaho and there are challenges to us now in our new venture.  But oh how sweet the time spent working together to figure them out and O how sweet the rest when the lights turn off at night and the frogs croak and the wind gently blows and the stars twinkle goodnight!  It's a good life!

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