An accurate assessment…or a good look around

Most of my previous professional life was spent working as a Case Manager. I’ve worked in Child Protection in SE Ohio, did Disaster Recovery after Hurricane Katrina in Mississippi & was an Employment Consultant to adults with special needs in Florida. As different as these all were, they all had one thing in common. They all started with an accurate assessment of the client’s needs, resources available to them to meet these needs and the resources still needed to do so. Since we’ve moved back to the farm, it seems we have been burning through valuable resources, time, money, energy…sanity, but not accomplishing much. All it once it hit me, there was a tremendous loud pop-which was me pulling my head out of the sand, the single most valuable lesson I learned in my professional life which needed to be applied to my personal one…..a good long look around.

No great surprise why it hadn’t  occurred to me to do an assessment. The outlook could be pretty bleak, and what would be needed to “rosy” it up, pretty monumental! But here goes….

We have 80 acres remaining of what was once an over 200 acre working farm. A place which was covered with various livestock that provided financially for my grandparents, my dad & his older brother. A farmhouse which my grandmother used to create a comfortable home for the family. Thanks to the farm, my dad’s family ate and paid bills when so many people in this area went hungry and lost everything.  However, now the farmhouse is gone, the hills are covered with fields that we struggle to keep mowed and most of the outbuildings and barns that weren’t lost in a big fire in 2000, are filled to brim with remnants of generational hoarding tendencies (Guilty!).

Don’t get me wrong, moving back home from out of state has given us so many opportunities to be involved and close to our children as they launched into adulthood. Being fortunate to be involved as they married (2 of them on the farm), searched for and bought the home of their dreams, and…and…had our first grandchild, Miss Madelyn Marie (or My Sweet Little M&M). We’ve also been available to help Jim’s sister settle his mother’s estate and be a support as she struggles with her own ongoing medical needs.

We’ve also been fortunate to build the Pleasant View Cabin business and take it further than my dad ever would have dreamed. We’ve done so much work to both cabins and have so many more projects we want to do. There are so many ideas we are sorting through to make better use of the largest resource we’ve been given, land which has been in our family for 4 generations that is ours free and clear. We’ve been blessed with so many who have chosen to come along so far, our precious guests of both the Pleasant View Cottage and White Pine Cabin who appreciate our efforts and seem to really understand what we are trying to accomplish. Your support means so much more to us than you will ever know! We welcome you to come along with us on this wild ride, please pull the safety bar to the full upright locked position and keep your hands & feet inside the car at all times!

As Charles Kuralt used to say at the end of his “On the Road”program (one of dad’s favorites). Up ahead the road is bending, I wonder what is around the bend.





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