My wife and I had an idea a while back. In its embryonic stage the idea was about raising Alpacas on a small piece of land, it has since matured into what I am typing today. I am breaking this post apart into the goals we want to accomplish, and what we need in order to accomplish this goal.

First, what do we want to do with this farm? Well, there is quite a lot. The original goal was two-fold- to live as independent a lifestyle as possible and to help as many people (and animals) as God made possible. Of the former, I wanted to build a home and work a piece of land that allowed us to provide much of our own food, live an eco-friendly lifestyle that minimized energy bills (not because I am an “enviro” nut but because I am cheap), and provided a certain level of independence from the outside world. Of the latter, I wanted to take any excess (beyond what we needed to eat) and give much to the families in local communities who went without- whether it be families who needed firewood, eggs, milk, etc.

But now I am getting ahead of myself. In the beginning we only wanted to raise alpacas, as they are a good investment and quite a huge hit with investors- whether it be selling the fur or the actual animal. From there we began to think about owning some milking goats, sheep, and chickens (as each could provide for certain needs of drink, clothing, and food).

In addition to those animals we would keep to fulfill our own needs, I have always wanted to run an animal rescue. I love dogs- and quite frankly, I wish I owned more than two of them right now. But we thought that the dog shelter in and of itself wasn’t enough. What if we used the shelter as a program where kids with behavioral problems could work with the animals- and take steps towards their own improvement? I have read wonderful things about such programs all across the nation that already exist and help those inside prisons. Something about dogs seems to bring out a hidden part of even the worst of us. Perhaps it is their unconditional love, I don’t know.

Furthermore, the farm would include fruit orchards and pecan groves. We would pick what we needed for the season and then allow local folks to come and take from the excess for a nominal fee. Because I would also like to- depending on where we end up- be very involved in the community, and open my land to those in the community for family activities- not to mention ministry activities.

The latest addition to these ideas was born while talking with some friends. Our friends church has three spare houses where missionaries who are in between mission trips come to rest and relax from the rigors of the mission field. We thought it would be nice to build several additional small houses to provide for such a need on our farm.

There is so much we want to do, and I know to some it seems idealistic and unachievable. However, the Lord has really put this idea on my heart and I see this as highly possible. I try to stay in prayer over it, waiting to see how God makes things unfold.

But what do we need to make this happen?

First, knowledge. My wife and I have already started reading up on raising livestock and farming. Although there is no Complete Idiot’s Guide to Building Your own Farm there are many books on the subject. We have broken this down into subjects that each are responsible for- subjects that fit into our own interests. I am handling the finances of purchasing land, corporate taxes, etc., while she is focusing on the livestock part.

Second, funds. I have done countless spread sheets to see how much we can save and how long this will take. All point toward about a five year saving period that will begin this coming August. If my calculations are correct, we will need to save about $115,000 (plus sell our current home) to begin this project. Although the jury is still out on which financial vehicle we will use for investing the money over the next 5 years. Any suggestions?

Third, land. We are looking for the right piece of land. At this point I don’t know if we want to purchase it early and try to find jobs in the area, or if we should settle down in an area and try to find land. I won’t be looking at a serious job until three to five years from now- when I complete my Ph.D. Although, I have faith, that if this is what the Lord wants us to do, things will fall into place- in a way that will amaze me no doubt. He’s done it before.

Fourth, a home. We acknowledge that we might have to live in a trailer for a few years as the land and asset purchase might eat up our funds. When we do build our house we will be building a Formworks’ designed home. Just visit the linked website and check out the amazing benefits to these homes. Even you are an “enviro” you will love them, or if you are just plain cheap (like me) you will love them! And for those of you too lazy to click on the link- you know who you are- here is the list of benefits:

  • No major maintenance for more than 100 years;
  • Little or no heating/cooling needed;
  • 50 foot “free span” allows spacious Interior;
  • Thin shell construction (four inches);
  • 90% fewer pollutants & allergens than standard housing;
  • Virtually impervious to moisture and insects;
  • Tornado-proof, hurricane-proof, earthquake-proof;
  • Estimated life span 200 to 1,000 years;
  • Never been denied a building permit in any state

No more ant invasions or seeping moisture, count me in!

So what do you all think? I am a crazy dreamer, aren’t I? My head is often in the clouds. My wife is the one with her feet firmly planted in the ground. Together we make an excellent team. Doesn’t hurt that she is beautiful either.

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Comments
  1. DulceDiana says:

    Lol…sorry, but you crack me up! It’s so wonderful to dream isn’t it?

    I think you have a very good plan…I wish it was easier though to live a more simple life. My hubby is like that too. He wonders off thinking of every detail and I bring him back to reality, what are helpmates for?
    God is in control of the wonderer and the realist. Thank you Jesus!

  2. mommyzabs says:

    you guys sound like a great team! and it’s awesome you have the same vision.

  3. I’m the dreamer in my house, so I say go for it! I’ve got a couple of friends that are “gentleman farmers”, meaning they have “real” jobs, but live on working farms. One does it for the ag tax exemption only, but the other is whole hog (pardon the pun) and will be farming full-time before the end of the year.

    Oh, the Formworks homes look cool, too.

  4. Lady Rose says:

    Sounds great. A dear friend of mine has always wanted a small farm, but I’m a city girl! I work in an area though that has many small farms and often stop by for fresh veggies from roadside stands. One sells wool now I think, I just noticed the new sign. The roads get a lot of traffic because we are near a few big companies as well as between two colleges – and major on ramps to highway – so it’s a great location to have a farm and make a good living, plus close enough to get to shops and things needed from a city. I wish you the best of luck and may all your dreams come true! Lady Rose

  5. the Grit says:

    Hi T,

    Having inherited the family farm, actually, my wife’s family farm, with absolutely no experience in the field (as long as we are punning) I’ve learned a few things that I would be most happy to share. Drop me a note via the email address on our blog, and I will send you my real email address so we can talk.

    the Grit

  6. dadinaught6 says:

    We’ve had thoughts of similar aspects for quite some time. My wife is really into horses (which certainly don’t make money unless they run really fast).
    While a mobile home isn’t bad idea, you can also build living quarters over the barn. Yes, there is a certain amount of odor associated, so I’d build living quarters over the hay barn or at least not keep any livestock in it.
    Practical aspects:
    goats are easy keepers and they by themselves provide an ag exemption on taxes in most states; never tried to milk a goat, but the right type of goat is going for big bucks these days (some for pets, some for eating ‘cabrito’)
    I don’t know much about alpacas but they don’t look too difficult to keep.
    I’d be interested in keeping up with your progress on this.

  7. breederx says:

    I love farms, it would be awesome to get into raising livestalk, I think it would be so much fun. I have a great book about farming and raising livestalk for a living, I will have to rummage through my things and send you the name. . .or better yet just send it TO you, lol! 🙂 Hope your dreams come true someway somehow!

  8. ashjoshua says:

    This is a nice dream, not my kind of dream, but yes if you like it, why not?? God will always fulfill the desires of our heart if they are in His will, wont He??

  9. Rachel says:

    I think it’s a great idea! When I started to have a desire to go to Africa as a missionary, I remember thinking there is no way I can go! Over a period of praying and seeking God, I realized that I was putting God in a box. If He wants me to go, then He will make a way. I know there are steps I have to take but I am believing Him and I would rather err on the side of having too much faith than not enough!
    Remember, everything is possible for him who believes. Blessings to you-
    Rachel

  10. Thanks for the comments Rachel. I am trying hard to make sure that this is something God wants for me, and not simply something I want for myself.

  11. faithwalk says:

    Amen to what Rachel wrote!
    If it is Gods will and you know it, then go for it!
    Just be sure in the savings process that you give; you just can’t outgive God and He will bless you for it.
    It sounds like your heart is to help and bless others in need, just like the Fathers heart.
    May the Lord give you guidance and a clear plan for the future. How exciting!

    Blessings,
    Susan

  12. Jennifer says:

    Okay, can you please talk to my hubby? LOL….This is my dream too, but unfortunately my husband doesn’t quite share it yet! I hate being so “dependant” on the world’s system. I want to feel secure and trust the Lord for provisions – but it’s hard when the economy could collapse, or a natural disaster could strike, and then where will we be? DEPENDANT on the government. My husband would be out of a job (who cares about killing bugs if the world is falling apart?) and then what would we eat if all the resources were gone at the grocery store? I think about stuff like this!! Well, I guess this is where people like you would come in. We’d pack up our bags and head over to TT’s place to ask for food and a place to camp out for awhile! LOL Hey – you’re a brother, so you have to treat me as “the least of these!” 😉 Right? ha ha…

    Well, I think it’s an awesome dream and it’s good to see you both are on the same page about it… GO FOR IT!!!! (and dont forget to pray for my husband that he would want to farm too, k?) hee hee

  13. […] wife and I, when we begin our farm, will implement this in its literal sense. But in a larger sense, do we give our first fruits- our […]

  14. What an amazing dream. Sounds like one God couldn’t help but bring to reality.

  15. Christian Symbols and Christian Resources

    Sorry, it just sounds like a crazy idea for me 🙂

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