In August of 2018 we found our dream home on this idyllic farmstead in Wisconsin. This dream was 5 years in the making and we were so grateful for its realization. We spent endless hours dreaming, vision boarding, talking, educating, and yes, stressing over this, but in the end all dreams really do come true!
Our little farmstead consists of 5 acres surrounded by dairy cows, pasture, woods, lakes, and kettles in the heart of Wisconsin’s dairyland. What did it for us was this beautiful 1885 cream city brick home built by an Irish family way back when. One of the most spectacular things about this property is the attached sunroom that we had no idea we really wanted. It has become our most used and loved room!
In our first year we were quite busy settling in and establishing ourselves in our new home, and getting to know the land. We welcomed goats, chickens, and Cash our dog.
Created our dual 50′ x 60′ garden beds. In the fall we prepared the site using a permaculture technique of laying down a sheet of cardboard (already had that with our moving boxes) and topped that off with 12″ of organic mulch. The soil was looking great by springtime!
One of the many gems this property had already was the very large hoop house. It was primarily used by the previous owners for storage, so we had to rehab it quite a bit. It stays quite warm in here so we have enjoyed greens through early winter and start them up in early spring. This past summer we tested it out with tomatoes and peppers and they did awesome!
At the end of the hoop house is an old shed that must have been used to house dogs. It was in need of some major TLC so we tackled that immediately to make a new home for our goats and chickens. The birds will move to their new coop soon.
Some other fun things we did: planted a small heritage apple orchard, built a fire pit and prepped wood from the tornado damage, planted some little flower beds, fixed up the pole barn, planted one of the garden beds with rye, alfalfa, turnips, and rape, preserved an abundance of summer veggies for the off season, and so many other little odds and ends!
In the home we painted and decorated, set up the kitchen, built a large blackboard, installed a beautiful butcher block island top, created a cantina for all our homegrown goodies, and much more.
Looking forward, here are some of our goals and aspirations for the next 1-2 years: bring in rabbits and pigs, finalize the garden and livestock pens, build an outdoor oven, renovate the upstairs for overnight guests, install a wood burning stove, plant living windbreaks…that sounds like enough for me now:)