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Farm owners, ever just want to hang it up?

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  • Farm owners, ever just want to hang it up?

    We have just a small little place, an old stone farmhouse on 4.5 acres. The house needs work (1.5 bedrooms, needs new floors, kitchen redone, we'd like an addition). We have a new 6 car garage/bank barn with a mechanics shop and barn, new 4 board horse fencing on about 2ish acres.

    Honestly, its SO much harder than we ever imagined (of course!!!!) and there are days when I just think WHY.

    I've had some health issues that have resulted in 2 surgeries in the past 3 months. So my contributions have been nothing, and because of that, hubby has had to take care of our DD, leaving projects sitting.

    I DONT want to spend the next 10 years with a half-done house. I want to ENJOY living here. I want to just spend my weekends with my family, riding my horse, etc.

    I see our friends in new homes or in condo communities where they have no weekend projects.

    I just wonder if allll this work, allll this stress, is really worth it. For all the money it costs to upkeep the place, we could probably move to a condo, and board my horse, plus another one.

    Am I the only person who feels this way sometimes? I'm hoping this is just a phase. My dream house was always an old stone farmhouse. But some days.....I'm over it.

  • #2
    I've lived in my fixer upper farm for 17 years. Once a year or so I want to throw in the towel. I do love my place but there are times where I'm overwhelmed, like right now. I feel your pain. IME it's never done.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by spacytracy View Post
      We have just a small little place, an old stone farmhouse on 4.5 acres. The house needs work (1.5 bedrooms, needs new floors, kitchen redone, we'd like an addition). We have a new 6 car garage/bank barn with a mechanics shop and barn, new 4 board horse fencing on about 2ish acres.

      Honestly, its SO much harder than we ever imagined (of course!!!!) and there are days when I just think WHY.

      I DONT want to spend the next 10 years with a half-done house. I want to ENJOY living here. I want to just spend my weekends with my family, riding my horse, etc.

      I see our friends in new homes or in condo communities where they have no weekend projects.

      I just wonder if allll this work, allll this stress, is really worth it. For all the money it costs to upkeep the place, we could probably move to a condo, and board my horse, plus another one.

      Am I the only person who feels this way sometimes? I'm hoping this is just a phase. My dream house was always an old stone farmhouse. But some days.....I'm over it.
      Some times, reality is different than what we built up in our minds over time about something or another we really don't know much about.
      That is how some end up with a puppy, horse, farm or even marriage and then realize they wanted the idea of what they desired, the reality not what they expected.

      When life gives you lemons ...

      Just think, if you had not bought that farm, you would be still wanting that farm.
      Now, you are richer for the experience.
      Change what you can, move on if you are not happy there.

      Comment


      • #4
        You're definitely not the only one. You'll probably get a bunch of others telling you that.

        You've got an unfinished house, small child, horses and recent health issues. Of course you're going bonkers and wishing for a less stressful situation. Anyone would feel the same.

        Chalk it up to current situations all hitting at once and try riding it out. Imagine living in a condo with noisy neighbors, no privacy, no yard for the young one and every time you want to just look at or smell your horse you have to travel to do so.

        Blech!

        Plus you have that phenominal giant bank barn... Your house will catch up to it. And you'll heal. Neither situation is permanant and the results are worth waiting for.
        You jump in the saddle,
        Hold onto the bridle!
        Jump in the line!
        ...Belefonte

        Comment


        • #5
          hang it up

          Yes, sometimes I want a really neat house and a clean car , etc. And when t is freezing and I fall in the cold mud I want to hang it up. Sometimes I cry. But then I go and see how awful other folks are and I am so glad to come back home to the farm and horses.

          Comment


          • #6
            Look on the bright side. The zombies haven't shown up yet.
            "No matter how well you perform there's always somebody of intelligent opinion who thinks it's lousy." - Laurence Olivier

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            • #7
              Hell yes!!! I have those moments on a fairly regular basis. And we built our place 6 years ago, so I have no fixer upper issues. Although we are still trying to get things "finished"... that's a never ending project.

              Two winters ago we had TONS of snow here and had 3' on the ground at one point. We seriously had 3 months straight of snow. (In VA, where we're not used to dealing with much of it.) The power went out for a week. We were melting buckets of snow in front of our gas log fireplace in order to water the horses. Old horse colicked a couple of days before Christmas and I spent the holiday worrying about him. It was miserable and I told DH that I'd seriously sell the whole farm and everything on it for a dollar and happily move back to town. Oh, and when I broke my back and was totally out of commission for 3 months? Yeah, ready to move back to town then too.

              From time to time I miss being "free" and able to go on vacations and stuff like that. I try to remind myself on those occasions just how much boarding always sucked. I'm sure we won't be on the farm forever so I'll probably be back to boarding one day and wishing I still had a farm of my own!

              Hang in there and let your hubby get your house liveable for now, the rest can wait until you feel better. Hugs to you, I totally get it!

              Comment


              • #8
                Three years living on the farm where I have boarded for the last 18yrs has totaly erased all my dreams of owning a farm.

                Boarding sounds great to me. Not constantly fixing fences, feeding, mowing, mucking..... wow I might actually have time to ride if I didn't live on the farm. lol

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Mike Matson View Post
                  Look on the bright side. The zombies haven't shown up yet.
                  Exactly! It could always be worse

                  But seriously spacytracy, we've had our little place for 16yrs and it's still a work in progress. Work that we've done 95 0/0 of by ourselves. Our house leaves a lot to be desired, and I envy some of my wealthier friends, but not once have I regretted my move. It's pretty natural human nature to want more, or something different.
                  "Everyone will start to cheer, when you put on your sailin shoes"-Lowell George

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    After 40 years of living the farm dream, I have occaisionally had those thoughts. The place is never done, there is always work to do instead of riding, its 9:13 pm and I still need to go out and feed. My friend who keeps her horses here lives in an apt. and rides all the time.

                    I am getting old. Trading in horses and the farm for a place at the beach sounds great. I hope truly that that will NEVER happen. My farm is my dream, and my identity, along with all its work. Its the place where I raised my kids. Its the place I wanted to be raised in. My dream was for a farm, not just riding.
                    ********
                    There is no snooze button on a cat that wants breakfast.

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                    • #11
                      Oh yes. Nothing like having to come home beat from work and head straight out to the barn and feed what seems like a million rabbits, the horses, the pigs, or deal with our burnout neighbor who comes looking for the donkey that got loose three days ago at midnight thirty - srsly - why is it that tweakers do EVERYTHING at 2AM.
                      But in town in an apartment I'd hate it too. You're never locked into anything. The bunnies and horses and pigs could all be sold and we'd just convert to tall grass Bob White habitat for less mowing and good deer hunting.
                      Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                      Incredible Invisible

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I have these moments, too. They have been a lot less often since I gave up on the idea of being able to do it all ourselves and I started delegating more work and responsibility to employees. Oh, I'm still out there driving the tractor, mucking stalls here and there, and crying over burst water lines, etc., but it is a lot more bearable to have some breaks from it all. Get help. Not counseling but some type of a part time helper.

                        Ok, and the other thing you've gotta get used to is that when you have a FARM, as opposed to a tiny little condo or a tiny little townhouse with a yard the size of a postage stamp, things ain't gonna be perfect. Some days you gotta get yourself a glass of lemonade and a good book, put your feet up, and look out across your un-mowed farm.

                        And lastly, people with condos and townhouses still end up doing weekend home projects and stuff, but lets face it, their home projects are a lot more boring than farm projects which often involve heavy machinery, dirt, and exciting things like new fence .

                        Anyway, you gotta do what's right for you, though. Maybe wait to make a decision until things have settled down for you a bit.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Never! I have never wanted to hang it up, despite sick horses, broken water pipes due to freak freeze in Texas last year, worry about finding decent hay this year, etc., etc.

                          I remember when my husband and I first saw this place and I said "I feel like we've found paradise". I still do. We are blessed with having our horses at home, wildlife on our property, a pond in our front pasture and being able to trail ride out our back gate. My favorite time of day is early evening when all the horses are snug in their stalls eating hay. I love being able to go out to the barn in the mornings in my PJs and feed my horses.

                          I can't imagine ever trading this for a house in suburbia (been there, done that). Even when I have two horses that need twice daily meds right now I wouldn't trade it for anything. In short, I love my little farm and feel eternally grateful that I am able to realize my dream.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Oh lawdy girl, about once a week! I've been born and raised in the biz, went out into the real world then came back to it. And there are plenty of days where I fantasize about a little house in the suburbs, sidewalks, time to shop and be a stay at home mom, exercise classes, ladies lunches, traveling, having nice things, seeing our friends........... oh where was I?

                            So yes, the thought of running away with the circus to escape your drudgery is very very very normal. We have lived in our home for ten years. the week we moved in, I tore the old vinyl wall paper off the kitchen walls to reveal the plaster and glue, an odd mix of white plaster and powder blue primer paint........ it's still like that.......


                            my suggestions are these as this has helped me through. Take at least one half day to a whole day off per week where you do just the minimum at best and then DO NOT go to the barn. I take sundays off. I have a guy that cleans the barn that day and handles everything from feeding to turnout to spreading turds. Sometimes, I just sleep in, stay in the house, do nothing. Sometimes, I go do things I've been needing to do. Makes going in to the barn on Monday bearable.

                            Also, if you have a good friend near by, make a standing monthly date for lunch or dinner. Get clean, put on makeup, wear clean shoes and go disappear for two hours. This is not to be done on your day off but another day of the month, every month. my friend lives around the corner. We have recently started our monthly lunch date and it has saved our friendship and our sanity.

                            Plan a home project, even if it's a little one. Get photos organized, paint a dresser, make something on your sewing machine. Whatever you do, it will make you feel good when it is done. Your own private little project that is not related to the mundane avalanche of crap that piles up when owning a farm.

                            journal - it will amaze you how laying in bed at night and journaling the days activities can clear your head. I have been doing this for my son since he was born. Nothing exotic, just when something noteworthy happens, it goes in his journal. just a few words, maybe a milestone or something hilarious he did. I love that when he is a grown man, we can look back at so many monents in his childhood that made us all smile. It helps me because even while entrenched in the daily grind of the farm, it reminds me that life is good. Without this farm, my life would be very different. And I'm not sure I'd want that.

                            Keep calm and carry on....
                            ...don't sh** where you eat...

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Prime Time Rider View Post
                              Never! I have never wanted to hang it up, despite sick horses, broken water pipes due to freak freeze in Texas last year, worry about finding decent hay this year, etc., etc.

                              I remember when my husband and I first saw this place and I said "I feel like we've found paradise". I still do. We are blessed with having our horses at home, wildlife on our property, a pond in our front pasture and being able to trail ride out our back gate. My favorite time of day is early evening when all the horses are snug in their stalls eating hay. I love being able to go out to the barn in the mornings in my PJs and feed my horses.

                              I can't imagine ever trading this for a house in suburbia (been there, done that). Even when I have two horses that need twice daily meds right now I wouldn't trade it for anything. In short, I love my little farm and feel eternally grateful that I am able to realize my dream.
                              Me too! It may be that I had to wait for it - got my horse at 35, my little farm at 41. I do have things set up so they are generally easy - horses out 24/7, roundbales, chickens free range, dogs on wireless fence. It really isn't that much work. I do bush-hog 38 acres, but I love it for some reason. I make my 12-year-old do the chores I really don't enjoy (water trough and bringing in feed buckets, not sure why, but I don't get any fun out of those things).

                              I would think it is probably more the health issues - that's some real stress.

                              Our house will probably never be done (foreclosure), and it has some serious oddities, but I adore it here.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Oh, I tell my friends that there is a reason that the phrase, "bought the farm" means an untimely demise. I love mine though. For years I could never get the barn, yard, house, or shop cleaned at the same time. I just finally got a housekeeper. Makes a lot of difference in your perspective. Spring is around the corner here. Things will be green and pretty soon enough. It's easier to be positive when things aren't icy, muddy or dusty.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  We bought a dump on 20 acres to fix up...Health issues, job changes etc have made me want to throw in the towel many times...Ultimately, we will sell, but not in this market. I have come to the decision that we do what we can, when we can, and I can't just stress it anymore. Hopefully enough will be done before we retire that we can downsize to a more stress free life. That being said, there is nothing like waking up to the horses, the sunrises, the chickens etc. I just needed to be 20 years younger when we undertook it.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I love, love, LOVE my farm. Purchased 27 years ago, our 2nd farm (the 1st being the equity maker to buy the 2nd.) It is everything we want, with everything we love in a country place for ourselves, the horses, and dogs.

                                    Work? Always. Demanding of time and money? Sure, but what price is paradise worth?

                                    Would I ever want to leave it? Never!

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I live in the suburbs and it SUCKS. People close on either side, cars everywhere, if you want to go for a walk, the dog has to be leashed and you're walking on concrete.I put such a high value on my privacy and quiet that living amongst other people puts a huge stress on me and my life.

                                      Someday I do want my own farm. With my own (few!) horses at home. I can still say that after an entire day of feeding/turnout/cleanup at work of dozens of OTHER PEOPLE's horses at a farm that isn't mine. I did get to wave at my horse when I passed her field. Ride her? HA, when and where this time of year?
                                      It's a uterus, not a clown car. - Sayyedati

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        For me, they key to not stressing out is to set things up so the work load is minimized. We were financially stretched when we bought our 5 acres, 20 years ago. Now that I have running water in the barn, electric buckets, a feed room, a tractor, and all of the other amenities that we couldn't afford when we bought the property, it is easier. I only have 2 horses now, which helps.

                                        Our daughter bought her place a year ago. She has lots of labor saving items such as an automatic waterer, a run shed, new fencing, and a barn that is close to the house.

                                        It will get better.

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