We have been getting this question quite a bit over the past few months, from friends and family back home, and even our new acquaintances here. So I thought I'd answer on my blog. Why did we leave our perfectly comfortable life in the Houston, TX area to move out in "the sticks"? By choice, even?! I cannot give a simple answer to this question. I have been reflecting on this a lot.
My husband and I have been craving a simpler life, a country life, since we were first married over 14 years ago. He was blessed to live on a farm in Oregon for a few years in his childhood and loved it. I took FFA in high school and raised 2 pigs, despite the "nerd" label I got from it. We just both have sought for a chance to have a little parcel of land to grow a vegetable garden and some animals. For fun. For a little more self-reliance. For our kids to learn responsibilty and appreciate nature.
We had tried to find this dream property in the Houston area. We tried to purchase properties and failed after many attempts. It just wasn't meant to be in that area. We continued to feel a feeling of changes ahead, of "waiting" for something to materialize. It took us a few years.
More recently, I have felt this need to become more self-reliant, to be prepared. I worked on learning new skills and food storage. That helped. But it wasn't enough. I have always been a bit more "granola" than my peers. I had 2 homebirths, just to prove I could do it if necessary. I homeschooled my kids for a spell. I always felt this need to learn certain skills for that "just in case". Am I a bit doomsday? Yes. I am. I worry about many things that could be in these perilous times. So I naturally have been feeling a need to go to the country.
But WHY MISSOURI?
We had been looking at dream properties online for a few years. We looked all over. Maine, Alaska, Oregon, Utah, Arizona... but we kept coming back to Missouri. We found a few properties that were the most tempting, but one in particular. And in October of 2011, we took the plunge and drove out to see them. That favorite of ours was definitely "the place" for us. My mom knew it, too. We decided to bid a bit less and see what the response would be. Obviously, it was accepted.
We are LDS, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. But we were not seeking to build up Zion in the New Jerusalem. As a sweet sister in our new Branch has said, we were prayed here by some very good members. I like that.
And we love it here. We have 40 acres of beautiful land. The soil is so rich and fertile. We are slowly acquiring the animals we have dreamed about. We have met the nicest people and truly feel at home here. We feel like we have a work to do here, both temporally and spiritually. But we still do not know the full answer of why Missouri. If I ever figure it out, I'll let you know.