2011-02-17 01.28.53

If I were to do an honest year-in-review post it would look something like this: January through April we put in the chicken field and started the summer garden. Fruit trees were planted, perennial herbs were thrown in the ground. May brought news of a new babe and thus began the usual season of morning sickness in which I spent my days trying not to throw up or fall asleep.

2011-03-05 01.59.43

By July that was pretty much over, we tried not to overheat, and then Stewart started showing the early signs of adrenal fatigue. By the second half of August he was down for the count for much of the day. By September he had a full blown health crisis while we were traveling. Since then I’ve gotten bigger, Stewart’s gotten smaller, he’s recovered as much as we could possibly expect, and the year finished with the family flu and Stewart’s back seizing up.

2011-02-17 01.40.38

So that whole “we are homesteaders and here’s what we’ve accomplished” post is something you won’t find here. Instead, today I’d like to declare 2013 a year of humbling spiritual lessons, reality checks, and heart checks. It has been a year of letting go, a year of checking our motivations, a year of truly understanding that He will give us what we need.

2011-02-23 19.06.01

I won’t pretend, though, that this hasn’t been the hardest six months I can remember. Still, for some reason, I can think of only one word to describe 2013: rich.

And as I walk around the homestead I am in awe of the things that did get done. Truly, in the midst of the many times that Stewart and I lay on the floor or the bed in exhaustion and laughed about what a feeble pair we make, the Lord granted so much.

2011-02-19 22.55.09

  • A new chicken coop was built to house a larger flock.
  • The new roofline and water tank were put up, doubling our catch water.
  • That roofline has started to become an extra living space.
  • We had our largest harvest of beans, squash, and sweet potatoes, all of which we’re still happily eating through.
  • At least half of our fruit trees survived the summer heat.
  • A gate went up where only pallets once stood.

2011-02-17 01.33.18

2011-03-10 16.29.25

From deep in the trenches of our own physical weakness, He has provided so much more than we could ever imagine or do with our own two hands. Once again, we have seen from Whom all of our needs are met and far surpassed. Such blessings, such rich and plentiful blessings.

2011-02-12 23.33.57

And as I feel this little one within squirm and kick and remind us of the blessings and miracles that surround us, I look so forward to whatever it is He sees fit to bring us in 2014. And I am oh so grateful that “success” here on the homestead is not up to us and our own doings.


4 Responses to 2013 on the Homestead

  1. Janet says:

    Such beauty are the words of praise and thankfulness to a God who is awesome!!
    The baby chicks are just darling :)


  2. Beautifully written, Shannon. Here’s to a blessed new year.


  3. Leah says:

    And in the midst of all of your accomplishments, you forgot to add the hard, humbling, beautiful work of growing little people made in the imagine of God to reflect His likeness. If you have done nothing else, that is success. Blessings on growing another little one. Such joy this life giving is!!


  4. Hil says:

    Hi there! I just wandered in here from Joyful Living, and I so much enjoy your blog! I love that you share the good with the bad. So many people show only their great triumphs, and I think,”bah,who are these people?” Knowing how hard you have worked and how much you have overcome, it makes reading your successes so much richer. So, go you! Thanks for writing! I hope you are having a good winter rest, if there is any such thing on a homestead.


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