As the first blog we will start by introducing ourselves a bit.
KYLE & I:
I (Athena) am a registered nurse by formal education. My career as a nurse specializes in Palliative and Hospice Care. In January of this year (2018) our family packed up our lives and moved from Kansas City to the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina on the coldest day of this year. Since we moved to this beautiful state I have been a professional stay-at-home dragon trainer (i.e. a parent). I am currently self-studying all things homesteading, organic gardening, plant-based farming, Permaculture, and simple & kind living. I tend to run a nuanced line on various social, religious and political that can make "both sides" of standard-issue camps feel uncomfortable. This is what it is. I honestly feel that it is the most authentic way for me way to live. I'm not contentious at all. Usually, quite the opposite. I just favor the allowance of nuances that can make more "black & white" people frustrated. I don't like to be put in a box and I don't like to see others put in boxes. On that note, I stopped eating flesh, eggs and animal milks October 2012 and try to always be learning and digging deeper. I'd say I'm unorthodox in much of my core orthodoxy and methodology--for example, I typically don't talk about that fact that me and my family are plant-based eaters or rooted in a Jesus-based faith unless expressly asked about it. Though that is hard when you are publicly writing about your deepest motivations in life, I promise will not make those isolating topics if I can at all help it. I stay deeply rooted in core ethics of kindness and passionate loving stewardship of creation, its current inhabitants and our collective future. I don't typically like or feel it necessary to broadcast myself in labels (but I get that this is sometimes unavoidable). I guess believe more in being than talking about being. So, hello!
Kyle. My amazing partner and husband. This man is handsome, intelligent, strong, deep-hearted, an extroverted introvert, not unusually outspoken but absolutely has something to say if one is only willing to quite down and listen (and be glad they did!). He is intensely "deep-watered" (and usually much more "steady" and "cool-headed" than I), our super-hero, an amazing husband and incredible daddy (& he can embarrass me later in one of his own blogs). He is a structural engineer by week-day career and a kindred-hearted, inspiring, world-saver by nights and weekends (really all the time but who's counting hours here...okay maybe we are...we want less office-job hours!! More home-based work!!). His journey toward living a life of simplicity and eventually also his own plant-based journey and now our homesteading journey (I would say...since I'm the one writing this blog) started when he and his sister used to play for hours in a magical plot of woods behind their house in South Carolina as kids. He has an intrinsic understanding and respect for his deep soul-healing need for a connection with nature. Nature and the earth with all its animals, bugs and natural-life has been a place of connection and restoration for our family since the beginning of our Story. He has always been a man who values simplicity and places of sanctuary. When we met we connected on the deepest levels of imagination, child-hood nostalgia, memories of beloved books and core-level desires to be authentic, non-hypocritical, simple human beings and "neighbors" wherever we are.
Together with our daughter and our five wonderful middle-aged and senior dogs (plus all our resident spiders, garden snakes, bush-bunnies and other wild creatures) are pursuing this life of simple, kind, light, loving, green-growing, stuff building, and always learning homesteading-right-where-we-are!
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Kyle and Athena
Welcome to our Farmstead Journal. We warmly invite you to read along as we share the day-to-day successes and road-bumps we encounter as we learn organic farming, pursue our search for our own land and our passion for homesteading, plant-based/"veganic" eating and growing, simplicity and our continual journey of learning and growing as a family!