Yurt Reynolds.

by janinelidell

yurtyLooking back at the past year and half, it’s easy to glamorize living in our yurt. But I know better. “Yurt Reyolds” as we’ve named our home sweet home has been a beautiful space full of lovely light. When warm enough, this has been a magical place to sleep, eat a slow-cooked meal and just be. Thanks to the basic accommodations of Reynolds, I’ve learned to read books again, rediscovered tea drinking and the beauty of cooking slowly on the top of our wood stove.

Really though, it’s been a year and a half of fancy camping, a bit of freezing in the winter and a lot of cursing the lack of close water. This past winter in the pacific northwest was one of the coldest and wettest I remember and it’s hard to ignore those factors when you not only have to start a fire but carry firewood a good distance just to begin the process. The day I came home after a night stuck in a Portland snowstorm, only to find my beloved houseplants all frozen to death, I knew it was time to think about some real walls again.

We began to start looking for a permanent home for our budding idea of a farm,  there was snow still on the ground and the lack of inventory of properties that fit our needs was slim. We had some factors up against us for getting a loan…not a huge budget, a lack of a solid 2 year work history since we had taken time off work to get experience farming on the east coast and the need for a home that wasn’t a total dump.

After the weather finally broke and we could see the ground again, a home with 5 acres seemed to be the one. We invested a nice sum of money in home, well and septic tests and splurged to test the soil of the ground for contaminants since we had witnessed dumping on the land that would be our someday farm. After a heartbreaking and wallet breaking realization that the land was beyond repair on our budget, we backed out. I must admit, I thought it would be another 6 months before we found something we loved again.

But then our realtor sent us a listing that we almost overlooked. I didn’t even notice the picture of the property at the bottom of the other listings she had sent along. A day or two later when I realized that we might want to see the property, she recommended we go right away as there was already an offer and it was to expire that night. So I got my shift covered at work and in the car we jumped. We drove down long bumpy roads, past houses with barns and a neighbor house with mini horses. We saw the interior of the home pretty quickly; one walk through. It was dumping rain and we didn’t even walk the entire property when we decided we had to put in an offer. There were two out-buildings, plenty of open land on a nice slope for our flowers, vegetables and animals. The property was almost 5 acres and had a little bit of forest.

As we found out that the home on Axel road would be ours, it was hard to believe that this would actually work out. Did we look long enough? Would something better show itself next week? Would we hate the commute on the pothole covered road? Was this really the right soil and land to grow our gardens and orchard and raise out someday animals? Would we be in over our heads with home repairs? These questions are finally taking a back seat as I know this is all part of the process of buying a home and we honestly feel that our future farm is becoming a reality.

So a few more weeks in Yurt Reynolds. I’ll miss the sound of the rain on the yurt (which used to keep me up at night). I’ll miss the giant open ceiling and the sweet wood stove. But I’m ready to have house plants again and maybe even a refrigerator.

As of now, we plan to move Yurt Reynolds to Future Farm. Maybe even a little airbnb action will help us fund the beginnings of our farm life. Anyone interested?

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