Taking the Leap…House Hunting!

As a military family, we have been too scared to try to buy a house for fear of being relocated. So, we made do with rented homes…and for 13 months, our travel trailer!

Here are some pictures from the gardens I have grown in the two homes we have rented while at our current duty station.

FIVE YEARS have passed at this duty station and a re-enlistment. Due to my husbands job, there are two other bases that he could get sent to…one is a 4 hour drive away and the other about 8 hours.

So yes, we took a huge leap and decided to buy a property to call our own. Who knows how long we will be here wasting money on rented homes and so we did it.

It is scary.

We spent a few weeks hunting and found a home and if all goes to plan it will be ours mid April

**so good vibes will be appreciated!**

Now, what if he gets orders? THAT is a very scary and dreaded concept now we actually decided to start being adults and buy a home. If he gets the base 4 hours away, he would live there in our camper for the work week (remember, we lived in it before) since he would only be ‘home’ to eat, sleep, and bath. He is quite content with that. Since we do not see much of each other during the work week, he would come home for the weekends so that we would not be forced to SELL or RENT the house out. He can also pick up home cooked meals on the weekends to freeze, home canned items, and garden food.

But HOPEFULLY that won’t happen…and especially hopefully he won’t get the base 8 hours away because we would likely have to rent or sell – lets just not go there ok?

Our PLAN is to make as many extra PRINCIPAL payments we can each year and the big hope is to pay off the mortgage quickly so we 100% own it and will always have that.

BESIDES – do you know how much interest we could avoid by living modestly now instead of stretching a mortgage over 30 years? It was over $70,000 in interest lost compared with paying it over 8-9 years.

Of course this only works if you chose a home below your top end budget so you aren’t extending yourself. But for US, a huge priority was being mortgage free as quickly as possible so we have the FREEDOM to have a home that 100% is ours, we can sell it and own all the equity, or we can rent and bank on it if we decide to move elsewhere.

It will be a thrifty and spend conscious time but we will have much more security  later on and choices if we own our home. It is lucky we enjoy “simple” pleasures like camping, hiking [shed hunting, scouting, foraging], hunting, fishing….because we won’t miss more spendy activities in favor of paying the mortgage down.

Plans aside though, it is still scary. 

So stay following us on Old Soul Homestead because I will be not only sharing our homestead journey and the tasks and skills associated but I will ALSO be sharing ways to be thrifty. Thrift and Homesteading go hand in hand really, especially when you are first starting out.

          www.thewarinmykitchen.com                          boomergirlsguide.blogspot.com

After closing day, I will share what we were looking for in a homestead, roadblocks that needed investigating, and resources that are available to you as a Homestead hunter.

Do you have a house hunting story to share? Comment below.

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Plum Jam and Saying Goodbye.

That first taste of rich, sweet plum jam from a spoon – because who had time to make toast before enjoying the taste of summer. Not just any summer either, an English country summer with the crisp smell of fresh cut grass, the subtle warmth of the mottled sun through the trees, and the sound of doves and robins as your great grandmother calls you in for cake.

Nanny Green always had a tin of cake or biscuits at the ready and whenever we went to visit you never left hungry – EVER. She was a lovely, kind, warm lady of whom my memories are few but never fading. I was 5 when she passed away and I remember my Nan bringing round a couple of things from her house. An old egg cup for me to keep and a jar of Nanny Green’s plum jam. Nanny Green you see raised children through the war and was still of the mind set to make your own and put things up. That last jar of plum jam with luxurious flavor from something so simple will never be beat nor replicated.

When somebody makes something from scratch I believe part of them stays with it – their essence, love, and honesty. That last jar of her plum jam, the jam you could eat from the spoon, was a bittersweet treat and  a last hug of her love and I remember when Mum told me it was gone.

At age 5 I vaguely understood death. I knew that we would never see Nanny Green again and it was clear that that last jar was the last, but only the last made by her hands for you see – when our ancestors pass on they are never gone entirely. I can’t speak much on spiritual terms but I do believe that when they pass away they are only really gone if we fail to remember them and although Nanny Green’s plum jam is over 20 years in the past, her legacy is not. Nanny loved to cook and showed her love for family with her food and that passes on through generations. My Nan cooks, my Mum cooks, and now I cook. I teach our sons to cook.

One day I will have a plum tree and finally get around to making plum jam just like Nanny. Now, I have canned a lot, and I mean a lot and have even won county fair ribbons for some of my canned goods but as yet I have not been able to bring myself to can plum jam because nothing could shine a light on Nanny Green’s and especially not store bought plums. So when I make it, it will be from our garden and from my kitchen just like hers and a piece of her will shine on as I enjoy that jam in her memory.

Consider your ancestors recent and past and repeat history by learning a skill they had and it will bring you much closer to your heritage as well as enriching your everyday life. 1009685_10201998255016846_47614296_o