The journey begins...
As many of you know, Mike and I have been looking to move for the past several years. Places that had made the "short-list were"--colorado, north carolina, connecticut and texas. We really didn't think that we would be able to find something in California, nor were we convinced that we wanted to stay here. Almost a year and a half ago, I was browsing the internet and stumbled upon a little ranch in the central coast and began to think that maybe the area could be a good match for us. There is plenty of land and space between neighbors....but within a few hours we could be in SF or LA. The area has plenty of culture, lots of great food, and a reason (wine) for people to come visit.
Mike and I both thought the little ranch would be great, but we weren't really ready to make the jump, so we just watched it with the thought if it were still available when we were ready, then we would take a look at it. We watched for 18 months. In April, we decided to go and take a good look at it. We liked it, and began to think in earnest about what our life would be like. We began researching land management, livestock, homesteading and hobby farming. We've priced farm trucks, back hoes, milk storage tanks and olive trees. We've struggled over the concern of friends we would leave behind, and the fear that remote living may preclude us from making new ones.We are both thankful for the acres of land, so we can have coveted "alone-time"
and we thought
if not now
if not now
we are going for it
On friday, mike and i closed on a 60 acre ranch in san miguel, california. san miguel is 7 miles north of paso robles just east of the 101. We do not have an ocean view, or a cute farmhouse with a porch swing (maybe one day)....but we do have rolling land with 100s of oaks, a small 2 bedroom house, a deep well, a pole barn and 3 yaks. We plan on moving to the new place early in 2013.
We will slowly grow into our new place, but the pie in the sky vision is to build a little dairy on the property, bring in sheep and goats, and start a little cooking school . We plan on making cheese, but also offering other classes, much like i currently do. The area has a lot of wineries, but not much else in terms of activities. I have been asking around and found that there is a great need and desire for something that is still gourmand oriented, but isn't wine tasting. The locals have expressed great support. A longer term goal is to build a barn in the upper ranch and fill it with guestrooms, rather than animal stalls. We envision a "barn and breakfast' for family, friends & farmstay enthusiasts, hoedowns, movies in the pasture, summer bluegrass, picnics under the pines, and a tree house or two.
Mike has been able to build a nice client base for his business which he can conduct anywhere there is an internet connection, so his work will be uninterrupted. He has also been teaching group and private archery classes for which he will continue to come to Pasadena and has plans to set up a range on the ranch for local clientele. We are very much looking forward to welcoming you and your family to our new home and to take this journey with us.