Homesteading and Livestock

Self-reliance and sustainability in the 21st century.

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Barnheart: Yearning to be a Farmer

1/21/2010 9:39:35 AM

Tags: homesteading, Jenna Woginrich, Cold Antler Farm, farming, gardening

Sheep headThere’s a condition that inflicts some of us and I can only describe as Barnheart. Barnheart is a sharp, targeted, depression that inflicts certain people (myself being one of them) as harsh and ugly as a steak knife being shoved into an uncooked turkey. It’s not recognized by professionals or psychoanalysts (yet), but it’s only a matter of time before it’s a household diagnose. Hear me out. It goes like this:

Barnheart is that sudden overcast feeling that hits you while at work or in the middle of the grocery store checkout line. It’s unequivocally knowing you want to be a farmer — and for whatever personal circumstances — cannot be one just yet. So there you are, heartsick and confused in the passing lane, wondering why you cannot stop thinking about heritage livestock and electric fences. Do not be afraid. You have what I have. You are not alone.

You are suffering from Barnheart.

It’s a dreamer’s disease: a mix of hope, determination, and grit. Specifically targeted at those of us who wish to god we were outside with our flocks, feed bags, or harnesses and instead are sitting in front of a computer screens. When a severe attack hits, it’s all you can do to sit still. The room gets smaller, your mind wanders, and you are overcome with the desire to be tagging cattle ears or feeding pigs instead of taking conference calls. People at the water cooler will stare if you say these things aloud. If this happens, just segue into sports and you’ll be fine.

The symptoms are mild at first. You start glancing around the internet at homesteading forums and cheese making supply shops on your lunch break. You go home after work and instead of turning on the television — you bake a pie and read about chicken coop plans. Then some how, somewhere, along the way — you realize you are happiest when in your garden or collecting eggs. When this happens, man oh man, it’s all down hill from there. When you accept the only way to a fulfilling life requires tractor attachments and a septic system, it’s too late. You’ve already been infected. If you even suspect this, you may have early-onset Barnheart.

But do not panic, my dear friends. Our rural ennui has a cure! It’s a self-medication that that can only be administered by direct, tangible, and intentional actions. If you find yourself overcome with the longings of Barnheart, simply step outside; get some fresh air, and breathe. Go back to your desk and finish your tasks knowing that tonight you’ll take notes on spring garden plans and start perusing those seed catalogs. Usually, simple, small actions in direction of your own farm can be the remedy. In worst-case scenarios you might find yourself resorting to extreme measures. These situations call for things like a day called in sick to do nothing but garden, muck out chicken coops, collect fresh eggs and bake fresh bread. While that may seem drastic, understand this is a disease of inaction, darling. It hits us the hardest when we are farthest from our dreams. So to fight it we must simply have faith that some day 3:47 p.m. will mean grabbing a saddle instead of a spreadsheet. Believing this is even possible is halfway to healthy. I am a high-functioning sufferer of Barnheart. I can keep a day job, long as I know my night job involves livestock.

Barnheart is a condition that needs smells and touch and crisp air to heal. If you find yourself suffering from such things, make plans to visit an orchard, dairy farm, or pick up that beat guitar. Busy hands will get you on the mend. Small measures, strong convictions, good coffee, and kind dogs will see you through. I am certain of these things.

So when you find yourself sitting in your office, school, or café chair and your mind wanders to a life of personal freedom, know that feeling is our collective disease. If you can almost taste the bitter smells of manure and hay in the air and feel the sun on your bare arms, even on the subway, you are one of us and have hope for recovery. Like us, you try and straighten up in your ergonomic desk chair but really you want to be reclining in the bed of a pickup truck. We get that.

And hey, do not lose the faith or fret about the current circumstances. Everything changes. And if you need to stand in the light of an old barn to lift your spirits, perhaps some day you will. Every day. For some, surely this is the only cure.

We’ll get there. In the meantime, let us just take comfort in knowing we’re not alone. And maybe take turns standing up and admitting we have a problem.

Hello. My name is Jenna. And I have Barnheart.



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Post a comment below.

 

lovetobeoutside
8/19/2013 4:17:02 AM
just read the news letter ssoo glad i just self diignoised my self found out i got barnheart or farhart eather one i whant to move i hate liveing in the city and i know my dog whould love to be out getting the sheeps or ducks she is a good hearder

TroutAngler
8/14/2013 4:58:29 PM

Hello. My name is Greg and I have barnheart. 


TroutAngler
8/14/2013 4:58:21 PM

Hello. My name is Greg and I have barnheart. 


8/14/2013 3:46:00 PM

hmmmm, I wouldn't call what I have Barnheart - maybe Farmheart?  yea, that's it!  and I do have a plan in progress, which does help.  thanks for the article and the encouragement to keep going til we get there :-) 

 


homesteadhappiness
8/14/2013 3:14:01 PM

I just want to encourage any of you out there that are living in a city or suburbs and wish to have your own homestead or farm.  You can get there!  We were lifelong Chicagoland residents and knew we wanted to have our own homestead in Tennessee.  But in order to get there you have to make it a priority!  Too many people pine for "pie in the sky" dreams but never take steps to get there.  Don't be a dreamer, be a do-er!  We spent 5 years researching livestock breeds, new skills, getting our house ready to sell and deciding the exact town we would want as our home-base.  And we took time to visit Tennessee 3 times to find the right area.  We waited until our youngest graduated from high school and moved 2 days later, with all 3 sons in tow--willing for the most part but being unable to live on their own yet, they really had no choice! :)  It has been 2 years now and there are times we ask what in the world we are doing.  But ask us if we would rather be anywhere else or doing anything else and our answer would be an emphatic "no"!   We currently have 8 cows, 2 horses, 2 sheep, 5 goats, 9 ducks, an assortment of chickens (with 24 chicks in our kitchen right now), a dog and a hive of bees.  We have learned to make our own hay, make maple syrup, take care of all the animals, how to can, how to use and make herbal remedies, --so many things and so many more to come!  My husband would like to be farming full-time but that will come later.  Figure out what your dream is and take steps to get there in everything you do.  In how you spend your money, in preparing your house to sell, in weeding out your stuff in preparation to move, in doing research--just DO IT!  No time is perfect so get moving NOW!  (just a side note-if you are lucky enough to have a chunk of equity in your home, seriously consider using only that amount to pay for your homestead.  There is no peace like having no mortgage.  Your chances of success multiply astrinomically.  There will be days when you mourn having a nice house all decorated and in great shape in a nice neighborhood where everything is clean and neat.  But do you really want to LIVE there?  We made a choice.  Less house, less manicured, more land, no mortgage.  And we have never been sorry.) Good luck homestead wannabes!  You can get there too! 


gipsydove
8/14/2013 1:04:43 PM

I have  another sickness called Urban Shock it's caused  by losing your goat farm and moving to the city to go to collage get a degree as a graphic designer to make enough money to buy a goat farm. its terrrible . the worst thing I have ever felt. thanks for posting this it helps me feel less alone.   :)


Chelly
8/14/2013 12:36:09 PM

I'm starting a home business to fund my homesteading/prepping dreams with all natural jerky - it's a great product made inthe US, no harmful ingredients, over 40 varieties, and even an all-natural turkey jerky just for dogs - it stores great and easy to share with others - get a free website with just 2 bags a month - take a tour for more info @ http://www.s6pt.com/petandpeople or read about it at my website http://www.qualitypetandpeopleproducts.com/ (Jerky Direct tab).  Thanks in advance for your interest and good luck to everyone.


Chelly
8/14/2013 12:21:03 PM

I'm starting a home business to fund my homesteading/prepping dreams with all natural jerky - it's a great product made inthe US, no harmful ingredients, over 40 varieties, and even an all-natural turkey jerky just for dogs - it stores great and easy to share with others - get a free website with just 2 bags a month - take a tour for more info @ http://www.s6pt.com/petandpeople or read about it at my website http://www.qualitypetandpeopleproducts.com/ (Jerky Direct tab).  Thanks in advance for your interest and good luck to everyone.


Chelly
8/14/2013 12:17:30 PM

I'm starting a home business to fund my homesteading/prepping dreams with all natural jerky - it's a great product made inthe US, no harmful ingredients, over 40 varieties, and even an all-natural turkey jerky just for dogs - it stores great and easy to share with others - get a free website with just 2 bags a month - take a tour for more info @ http://www.s6pt.com/petandpeople or read about it at my website http://www.qualitypetandpeopleproducts.com/ (Jerky Direct tab).  Thanks in advance for your interest and good luck to everyone.


Garet
8/14/2013 12:15:13 PM

Thank you, thank you, thank you. You've finally given me a term for the feeling I get when I'm going through seed catalogs and prepping my raised beds each year. I keep looking at that unused doghouse and see its potential as a henhouse instead...


Lorraine
8/14/2013 11:06:35 AM

My name is Lorraine and I have barnheart!  This article brought tears to my eyes and joy to my barnheart!  Thank you, this is the best article ever.  After the crash and divorce, I bought 5 acres on the side of a mountain and am almost done putting in my root cellar.  I have pinon trees, added a dozen fruit trees, and had a small garden this summer.  Thinking about quail next year, or chickens.  Got a couple solar panels, a wood burning fireplace, and have designed a cabin/greenhouse to attach to the entrance of my root cellar.  People want to know why I am so happy, but think I am insane when they find out.  Everywhere I look I see great projects and several have gotten started with little or no money (I am severely budgeted).  It is weird that I "lost" so much that I didn't really want, but gained everything I do want very easily.  Good luck all you barnhearters!


RedneckDon
8/14/2013 11:01:14 AM

My name is Don and I have Barnhart. I was first afflicted in High School working on a ranch in New Mexico. I am about to turn 60 and it is worse than ever.


Glee
8/14/2013 10:26:32 AM

That happened to me 25 years ago and it led me to a 4 acre place in the Siskiyou Mountains, a small herd of goats and the best years of my life.  Coincidentally, my mother's maiden name was Barnhart!

 

 

 


8/14/2013 9:34:38 AM

This fits me to a tee!!!! I truly am the happiest out in my garden and I am 5 days away from getting my first flock of chicken and I can hardly stand it!!! It is so nice to know I am not alone in my suffering..lol! Two more year and I will (hopefully) be living my dream fully, until now I am stuck in Hell living in Phoenix...lol

 


SHAMARAD
8/14/2013 8:04:11 AM

This article made me so happy! Happy to know that I'm not alone and not crazy LOL! Thank you so much for sharing. My favorite MEN article yet!


Lisa
8/14/2013 8:03:54 AM

I can not believe how you described my feelings EVERYDAY to a tee!!!  I am so glad I am not alone in this dream.  I am 53 yrs old and have spent the last 16 yrs as a single mom raising my 3 kids.  The last one graduates high school this year so then it will be time for mom to realize her dream.  Thank you so much for this article.


Pennoppom
3/8/2011 7:36:46 PM
Wow. I am so encouraged to know that I am not alone! My mom is a high ranking executive and bread winner, and my grandma is an incredibly skilled quilter, canner, bread maker and old fashioned home maker. Having these two incredible role models has lead me to feel torn between two worlds since i was 15 or so. I didn't know that there was a name for this condition, but i definitely have it.

Tina Hoak
2/23/2011 1:22:59 PM
Well Jenna, My name is Tina, I am 48 and I too have this affliction known as barnheart. Lucky for me I have a wonderful encouraging husband that understands my obscession. We live in a rural setting , farm land all around us . I raise chickens for eggs. They started as therapy birds , but have since taken on a new meaning.They are loving known to friends and family as "The Girls". I have added meatbirds every summer to suppliment/ replace store bought meat. We have 16 various fruit trees from apples to peaches, pears , plums and cherries. Top it off with blueberry bushes, grape vines and raspberry canes along with our veggie garden. I enjoy canning, quilting and soap making also. I wish we had more land (we only have an acre) as I would love to add goats and a few pigs and turkeys when I retire someday. I just keep hoping our wonderful neighbors change their minds and sell us some land to expand alittle. If not, I may just have to tear out the front lawn and put my animals there ! Won't that be a site for passers by :) Thanks for the post. Tina

DonJorge
12/31/2010 9:37:38 AM
Barnheart had I growing up in Orange County CA, now known as orageless county. I worked at dairies, farms, restaraunts and contruction but always wanted to grow everything and anything. I started farming at the age of 25 with the proceeds from selling dairy heifers I was alowed to raise while working on a diary farm. I started with 5 acres of strawberries selling the fruit in a roadsdie stand. I have farmed my entire adult life, a city boy gone astray. Now, at the age of 56 I have my red barn, my cute farmhouse, my loafing barns, a shop for tinkering and 300 acres of certified organic pastures fenced and ready for animals and 100 acrers of cropland in North Dakota. Soon I hope to spend the the growing season in North Dakota and the winter months in Mexico. We plant forages, forages, potaotes, beans and a garden in the spring. We buy animals in the spring and harvest and sell in the fall. Winter south like the geese. Barnheart is a dream. It is good to have dreams, for without dreams we are left with only nightmares. This cityboy had Barnheart, still does, but he knows the cure. Do it.

Beatrice
12/28/2010 11:27:51 AM
Oh, you've just described the last few years of my life superbly. I do ache for it. I do face the concerned and confused looks from family and co-workers. I do rely solely on the dream that one day I will have my homestead. Having it articulated so well was a great relief. Thank you!

The American Gothic
11/1/2010 4:11:05 AM
Has anyone considered making support/dating groups? Maybe printing up some "Don't judge me! A minivan is perfect for goat transport!" bumper stickers and "Proud survivor of Barnheart Syndrome - each seed makes us stronger!" tees? I am Kat, I was born with Barnheart, and it seems to be an inheritable trait in my family, but skips every other generation. At the first of the year, I will be riding back out to my grandfather's tiny patch of property to deal with the joys and pains of my illness. I thought it was under control. In remission.. alas, it just isn't that easy to be rid of, and I find myself grateful that this is true.

Tgrbts
8/26/2010 5:00:19 PM
I defintely have Barnheart. I've read M.E.N. since I was about 15. I was distracted by raising my family and doing what has to be done to live. (husband wouldn't move out of town) So got divorced and I trained for carpentry paying enough to have my dream of owning land. Just when I finished the apprenticeship, I fell, got hurt, and can no longer make that kind of money. Of course the husband re-married, and guess where he lives, in the country. I'm over the hill now and still hope I'll have a small farm some day. All I can do is keep trying and hoping. Thanks for reminding me I'm not crazy for still wanting it.

Pioneer Living_2
8/22/2010 9:21:36 AM
When I discovered I had barnheart,we moved and started a new life as a pioneer.

milkingmaid_44
7/16/2010 5:49:28 PM
Hi. I too, suffer from Barnheart. I was first inflicted with this disease when I was ten. Thank goodness I found a some relieve about twenty years ago. Shortly before my husband and I were married we bought a farm. But I am experiencing another flare up. I have always had a garden, chickens and cows. But the urge to have more is pulling at me ever so much more. I want to raise my own piggys, have solar/wind power, root cellar, even an outhouse! I do not think there is a cure. But it is nice to know, that I don't suffer alone. And there are others who 'suffer' along with me.

Scott_54
6/22/2010 11:02:25 PM
Hello. My name is Scott. And I have Barnheart. Jenna, your words are movingly expressive and revealing. As I read this post - I became teary eyed with truth. Thank You! My dog gets It. The sow and piglets get It. All the chickens get It. Even the sheep get It. Most of the humans close to me are dumbfounded. Thank you for being you!

Farmer Rachel
5/31/2010 12:54:02 PM
I grew up on an Idaho farm and now that I live in the city my Barnheart smothers me! the city smothers me- i didnt know it had a name, just that this isnt where i should be and I find I cant succeed in a city job- nothing feels right until I have dirt under my nails watching my potatoes grow!

K_8
4/29/2010 8:03:02 AM
I know that feeling and it is miserable. Sad thing is, I'm only 16 (and licenseless, due to new state laws. I won't be able to drive until the END of my junior year of highschool) so there isn't much I can do to alleviate barnheart. Granted I am capable of starting my own seeds and the like it is still hard to get rid of the feeling. I have my own business that is budding, and since my parents are paying for my necessities I can forward all the profit to expanding it. (All natural oils and cosmetics) And that in itsself gives me more of a feeling of independence and satisfaction but it is still very frustrating. I already plan on continuing my business after highschool if it's still around, possibly getting into the medical field, or just sticking to natural living but I know I will always be drawn back to nature, and in the end, I WILL have my farm. I swear, kids these days. I'll try to explain a feeling like that to my classmates and they usually just get quiet or say something along the lines of them not wanting to garden, not caring, or not wanting to because it seems to hard. Tch. Urbans. I know it's not for everyone but JEEZ! lol

Michelle Stacey_2
4/26/2010 10:29:31 AM
Hi my name is Michelle, and I have barnheart! My boyfriend and I live off grid in rural Alberta in a travel trailer. We have no constant power, water or septic system. We truck our own water in and use an outhouse. Our friends think we are crazy!!! I find myself spending my spare time browsing kijiji for livestock and trying to convince my boyfriend to get more!!! I just purchased my first flock of chickens and my dog is jealous because I spend more time tending to them. I'm glad to know there are others out there with the same affliction, press on barnhearters!

Courtney _1
4/25/2010 11:31:28 AM
Hi I am COurtney I have Barnheart and i love it

Jessica_21
4/8/2010 10:25:40 AM
This too is a story of encouragement from a fellow Barnheart sufferer. Tomorrow, I put in my two-weeks notice at my desk job to farm my 5 acres full-time. We already have at least one market lined up to sell our produce at and my husband will continue to work outside of our farm for the season to let me get our farm on its feet. We may fall flat on our faces, but we are about to jump off into the abyss and hope our parachute doesn't fail. What an adventure! I don't think either one of us would trade this for a corporate jet and mansion any day.

Patricia Lanza_1
2/18/2010 10:47:28 AM
Barnheat was passed down in my family from my grandmother to me then on to some of my children who will, hopefully, pass it on to their children. If you have to be afflicted it's the best thing that could happen to you. My problems with Barnheart was not admitting I had it and fighting the symptoms during the winter and other times; like living in an apartment, but once I owned up to it I embraced it and used the down times to write about my love of all things green and growing. Lasagna Gardening and Mother Eearth News put my feet on the right path to living with Barnheart. Loved this article!

Mona Parker
2/13/2010 9:54:17 PM
I have retired from Barnheart. Have been a farmer. Enjoyed every minute of it. We used to sell the milk from our six cows to an Amish Cheese House, using 10 gallon stainless steel milkcans. We are retired at the lake but still have a flock of around 25 chickens of Bantam and Americauna mix breed. We also milked up to six goats when our family was young. We have raised rabbits, turkeys, geese, ducks, and guinea hens, pigs and steers for meat. I have canned produce from numerous gardens and our small orchard. Made butter, homemade bread, wedding cakes as my children married. Sewed clothes for 4 children. Taught my daughter and sons to cook on our antique wood range. We have cut hay with a scythe and stacked it loose in haystacks. Our children all have Barnheart to a small degree. So I consider myself successful in raising them.

Carina McDowell
2/13/2010 9:38:54 AM
My name is Carina, and I have barnheart. My family thinks I'm crazy and they indulge the little gardening I can do. My husband is a confirmed city boy and refuses to even consider moving away from a bus stop within walking distance. Meanwhile, I secretly collect articles on farming and am threatening to build a beehive. I have joined beekeeping groups online and consume every article on sustainability I can find. Maybe, one day, when I hit the lottery, I can buy one of the farms I see for sale and start my organic market garden and fiber CSA.

Lourdes MacDonald_2
2/12/2010 4:08:26 PM
My name is Lourdes and I have Barnheart. The only problem is no one understands me! I live in a small property in Miami and live stock is not allowed. I’ve called the city and begged for them to allow me only two. I have the experience! When I was growing up in Puerto Rico we had cows, chickens, pigs and ducks. I know how to work the land. I miss the taste of real milk. I know how it feels to drink a fresh cup of coffee what I picked, dried and roasted. Why don't I move back to Puerto Rico? My husband doesn't understand. I have hope now that I know what I have.

jennifer juniper
2/9/2010 1:33:02 PM
I am working at curing mine, but need a partner in crime to help me buikd this lifestyle (I have a disability). Is there some sort of personals site for that? Is there a support group? LOL

charles ocheltree
2/8/2010 1:41:53 PM
Hey Keely.......you are on the right path but one sugestion......keep looking for that option that allows you to make this move without the burden of debt.......I bought a home recently with cash and even though it is a smaller property than the one I would prefer, we still make it work......not haveing a mortgage will make this adventure much more enjoyable....trust me!!!....the debtor is a slave to the lender(or sometimes the land)....you don't want this to become another job....it's a labor of love!!!..God Bless!

charles ocheltree
2/8/2010 1:37:14 PM
Hey all....We should have a barnheart party and see if this stuff is catchy???? Like the chicken pox, we might all become infected!!!.....can't wait for the day when I have stage 3 barnheart and my employer tells me I have only 3 months!!!haha.....just as God intended.....witnessing His creation and rejoicing everyday!!!!

Theresa_23
2/7/2010 4:26:30 PM
My name is Theresa. I am nearly 58 years old. I was born with Barnheart! :)

Sherri_13
2/6/2010 10:19:05 PM
Hi, My name is Sherri and I have Barnheart bad. I am grateful to know I'm not alone. The good thing is I've just ordered my spring seeds for my garden, so I'm one foot closer.

Eileen Hawk
2/5/2010 5:44:09 PM
Yes, I am 64 and have had barnheart for years and did little about it. Now I am working on my son who has barnheart to go for it. ( in a small way on our property.) Oh well we have to start somewhere.

Terri_18
2/4/2010 11:00:50 PM
Hi, my name is Terri and I love being a "barnheart". I can't think of anything better to be. Work or play, nothing quite adds up to the great feeling, I've wondered what was missing in my life....looking forward to spring and my first vegetable garden in 20 years. It's so wonderful to be back!

Keely _2
2/4/2010 2:29:52 PM
I have barnheart as well. My husband and I are in our mid twenties... the thing preventing us from buying our dream farm is the seeming lack of options on loans. In order to get a small down payment loan on land, there must be a house present on the land that is 70% or more of the value of the land. We would rather buy more land that has a small meager house on it, or build our own house! Unfortunately, with as expensive as acreage is even with all our scrimping and savings we wont be able to afford the 40% down payment that would be required without an existing house on the land for some time. If anyone has similar experiences, or has any advice we would much appreciate it!

Andrea_14
2/4/2010 1:42:02 PM
I'm Andrea and I have Barnhart! I am with Paul about the lottery thing. All I would want is a little house with a couple acres and plenty of sunshine! I love (am obsessed with) gardening, despite having Multiple Sclerosis and needing to stay out of the heat. Nothing gets me out of bed at 5am in the summer quicker than knowing I can go and pull weeds, water my veggies, and look at bugs. I have stayed out with flashlights to work in the evenings when it is cooler. I have found a cooling vest I am going to try this summer so I can spend more time outside! I used to read novels long ago, now I read gardening books and seed catalogs, and listen to gardening shows on am radio. I have been obsessed with the idea of having chickens for awhile now. When I look at houses I don't look at the house, I look at the yard and it's potential. I love bugs. I love good bugs, love the idea of having chickens to eat the bad ones, and I can make a good salad out of spring "weeds." Glad to know I'm not alone!

Cynthia_20
2/4/2010 12:48:41 PM
Thank you for putting words and a name to what I've been feeling for years! Reading all the comments, it seems like this is more common that I thought. It's nice to know we're not alone!

Steven_20
2/4/2010 12:44:36 PM
Hi my name is Steve and I am Barnheart to: It has taken my 27 years to get my wife out of the city and I did it we moved to a 15 acre 4 bedroom farm just outside of Ottawa. It's close enough that she can keep working. And far enough out to make me happy. Now to the best part FARMING. Getrdun

Sherry_17
2/4/2010 10:33:34 AM
My name is Sherry and I have Barnheart. My husband does not understand it, but is supportive of some of my eccentricities. I only have 3 acres..but on those I have my goats, and my chickens...and sometimes the neighbors ducks...Oh how I would love to stay home and putter around the "barn".

Rachelle Neveau_1
2/3/2010 9:08:37 PM
My name is Rachelle, and I have a serious case of Barnheart! Love that it has an official term and to see so many others that are in the same shoes...wishing they were mudboots. I live in an apartment and rent space in a community plot for gardening. There just happens to be two apple trees and a very nice crab apple tree here that no one else seems to care about. So between the apple trees and garden plot, I've been able to pacify the barnheart a wee bit...until I started ordering all of the "county living" type magazines! I'm so in love with chickens particularly and can't wait till I have some of my own. I am currently in search of a farm to rent/buy and if it doesn't happen this Spring I think I may just go nuts...oh, I can hardly wait to plant nut trees too!

Rachelle Neveau_1
2/3/2010 9:06:31 PM
My name is Rachelle, and I have a serious case of Barnheart! Love that it has an official term and to see so many others that are in the same shoes...wishing they were mudboots. I live in an apartment and rent space in a community plot for gardening. I'm so in love with chickens particularly and can't wait till I have some of my own. I am currently in search of a farm to rent/buy and if it doesn't happen this Spring I think I may just go nuts. Of course subscribing to all the country magazines probably don't help the barnheart feelings subside.

Marcia_7
2/3/2010 8:14:56 PM
Whew, now I know I'm not crazy. Just got the "barnhart" wishing I was wearing some Carhartt clothing...

sherry majors
2/3/2010 7:31:18 PM
Hi, I'm Sherry, I also have barnheart but my 2 sons and I are doing it We raise our own beef, Have chickens for eggs and fresh meat, we garden 2 big gardens, and now we are looking for our own Jersey milker for butter, cheese ect. we love it, But it just makes you want more, now I want a ranch to raise beef, I really love my cows. I'm so glad you put a name to this and that this old (50) haha hippy isn't alone. Never give up the dreams.

Christina_12
2/3/2010 6:25:29 PM
Hi, my name is Christina, and I have barnheart. I have had the great fortune of marrying into a family with an old farmhouse and 100 acres. Unfortunately both the house and property have suffered some neglect so we've got lots of work to do! Our goal is to become full-time farmers when my husband is ready to retire in the next few years. We're taking it slow and learning as much as we can. My Christmas wish this year was to be ready for a flock of chickens this spring, so that's progress! Good luck to all, if you have a strong desire and are willing to learn the ropes, you can make it happen!

Vicki Bullen_1
2/3/2010 5:12:52 PM
Hi my name isVicki and I have Barnheart. I grew up in the countryside of NW Georgia and always had a garden to work in even as a child. Now I live where I have to garden in containers and can not even have chickens. When spring comes I can hardly wait to plunge my hands into the soil and add plants and seeds and watch them grow. I will drive miles out of my way in search of free range chicken eggs! Oh for a chickens of my own!

Gonzalo Luna_2
2/3/2010 4:36:36 PM
I have Barnheart also. I am 55 and just itching to retire early to make my one acre as self sustaining as possible. So I guess I am not alone. Knowing that a lot of people have this same yearning gives me hope.

Pat P
2/3/2010 4:04:10 PM
Hello - I am Pat and I too have Barnheart. I also have a double whammy. I live in the country with friends and I long for a large garden (we do plant a smaller garden) and an orchard and animals to tend, but I get sun poisioning at the mere thought of it and sumburn while riding in the car - with tinted windows. My parents were farmers when I was little and I miss the idea of KNOWING where my food has come from and feeling that intimate attachment to the earth. Since the property does not belong to me I am limited to those things that make sense to those who do own it. After 8 years there is now talk about the POSSIBILITY of an orchard. I'll take progress wherever I can find it.

Lori S
2/3/2010 2:48:38 PM
Hi, my name is Lori and I have Barnheart. I want to thank all of you for voicing my exact feelings. I am a fortunate person who lives in the country and can raise chickens and grow a nice vegetable garden, and after reading this article it makes me count my blessings. Everybody hang in there, the American dream is still alive!

Sandy_18
2/3/2010 2:10:41 PM
My name is Sandy & I have Barnheart. Ever since I was a kid I wanted a farm. At 14 my parents bought a farm and I had horses. Then I bought this land 33 yrs ago. My ex & I raised a pig, some chickens, ducks, had a couple ponies for the kids, plus a large garden. When we divorced all the farming stopped. A few years ago I married a wonderful man...he grew up on a farm. We both share the love of being more self sufficent & raising our own veggies & meat. We built a new barn & hen house. We now raise beef cattle & pigs for our own use and to sell. We raise our own meat chickens & have laying hens & sell eggs. We have a large garden. Last spring we added on a year round greenhouse! We work part time & wish we were on the farm 24/7. I'm overcoming the Barnheart but still have a way to go. Coming home to those sweet faces, assisting a cow or pig give birth & saving a little one, brooding chicks, bottle feeding calves, etc. makes going to work a little easier. Happy Farming!!

ALAN JONES_1
2/3/2010 1:44:07 PM
Hi, my name is Alan. I have Barnheart bad, - and I'm doing something about it. I actually married into a farming family, and farm nights and weekends. We have a small organic farm, and after 35 years of factory work, we finally paid off all our debts ( see Dave Ramsey) and this spring I am taking the leap of faith and farming full time.

SeaHorse
2/3/2010 1:25:11 PM
Hi! My name is Sharon and I have Barnheart. The only way I can stand to keep my day job is I understand (in my brain only, not my heart) that it is necessary to pay the mortgage on the farm or the nice banker will make me leave. must get back to work, must get...

Wes_1
2/3/2010 1:16:13 PM
I have it, and it is getting worse. Unfortunately my wife has it too, but, not as bad as I.

Ruby_12
2/3/2010 12:49:38 PM
My name is Ruby and I too have this barnhearts. I always knew as a child I would someday move to a farm. Well 10 years ago I moved from the city to a salvage yard. 3 acres. First I got my new husband to move everything back, then we bought 14 more acres to go with it. I have about 40 chickens down from the 100 I had to start with. (possum problem). We just butchered a pig last week and have another to do this weekend. I canned all week. My gardening skills have much to be desired but I still comute each day to work in the city. I am still working on having the time to be better at gardening. I have planted a small orchard and it is doing pretty good. I learn most of the skills I need from mother earth. The husband and kids arent much into the farming but, I drag them along. Keep dreaming and get as close as you can. My only regret is not having time to do it all.

The Charlie_1
2/3/2010 12:41:03 PM
You have so captured my feelings, almost since I left the farm 35 plus years ago. I am an old farm boy, who would love to get back. Actually my dream has been to get out of the city. My wife a city girl doesn't quite understand but says if I can find a way she'll go along. I've been dreaming this dream long ewnouugh to say I have it all pictured in my head, not a huge farm, maximum of about 40 acres, house built into a hillside facing saouth small orchard, a garden, and some small animals. Being 62 and now disabled I am afraid this may be just a dream, but I keep trying to figure a way. In my youth I raised sheep, hogs, cows, chickens, turkeys, rabbits, and a few goats; plus I worked as farm labor most of my teen years. Only reason I left the farm was the dreaft weas a knockin' and I didn't want to be in the Army, so joined the Air Force, retired 22 years later and still trying to figure a way out of the city.

Maija
2/3/2010 12:21:28 PM
My name is Maija and I have BarnHeart. I grew up in Toronto. When I was too little to understand the facts of life ~ I used to tell people that I was going to marry a horse so I could live out where there were fields and cows etc. When I realized later that I could not marry a horse, I changed my dream to marrying a farmer. (as a matter of fact, I came close to marrying that horse... I married a jack ass!) Now, single at 50, I dream of living in a shack in the woods. As everyone else is saying, I too spend much of my time "out there" in my mind, and in my actions. Seed catalogue in hand, hound-dawg at my feet, I sip my tea and dream about what I will plant come spring...

Deborah_45
2/3/2010 12:14:57 PM
My name is Debbie and I have Barnheart. I dream of winning the Lotto Jackpot, quitting my desk job and buying a working farm. I love the smell of cow manure. I don't have anyplace to garden, so I prowl the internet looking for sites like Mother Earth to ease my pain.

Jill Parsh
2/3/2010 11:36:24 AM
Wonderful and Inspiring - I am Jill and I have barnheart! I am on the verge of leaving my home in So. California to return back to Michigan (where I grew up), in the hopes to make my dream come true. I am really jumping off a cliff as I have no idea how to make this dream a reality - I am just doing it and believing that the universe is guiding me in the right direction. Doing this with a farm partner would be wonderful; if there is anyone out there that lives in Michigan and would like to help start a farm let me know!

ANNE MARIE DUHON
2/3/2010 11:19:37 AM
Hi I am Anne Marie and I have Barnheart! I have it so bad it colors everything I do. I can not picture my life without my animals (I can't grow a silk flower!) My decisions in everything are baised on what makes the people AND the animals happy. My family thinks I am weird and we can not connect. My mom cant stand animals. She wont even visit me. My disease has gone so far as to become the way I earn a living. We had a successful petting zoo and pony rides in Louisiana until Hurricane Katrina changed that. Then we moved with the animals Ok and lived for almost 3 years totally off the grid back in the woods on top of a mountain. I will only speak for myself here I loved every hard, cold, hot, dirty, wet, uncomfortable minute of it!!! I learned that i could do alot of things without spending a penny or alot of technology. My happiest hours were wandering horseback with my daughter through the woods. I would go back in a split second. BUT because I am a mom too we moved down the mountain so the kids could go to school and have all the "benifits" of civilazation. We compromised 15 rented acres kinda in town with all that comes with living in town. But we, me and the rest of the family are happy. They have 24/7 power and I still have my farm. Chickens come in on the 12th CANT WAIT! The land and the cabin is still ours and waiting til the summer So for now my Barnheart is under control.

Chris DiAlfredi_1
2/3/2010 11:14:20 AM
It's officially a movement. I just posted the first definition to http://www.urbandictionary.com. (bärn-härt) n. A psychological disorder, usually of childhood, characterized by impairments in social interactions and repetitive behavior patterns centered around agricultural aspirations; particularly organic, natural, and sustainable farming pursuits. Chris DiAlfredi chrisdialfredi@yahoo.com

Chris DiAlfredi_1
2/3/2010 10:47:12 AM
Thanks, Jenna. My name is Chris, and I too, have Barnheart. This is an amazing and thoughtful piece. I thought I was alone, suffering an indescribable malaise while struggling to cope as a graphic designer. When I stare at my computer screen, I sometimes find myself literally feeling the morning sun on my skin and smelling freshly tilled earth. I have probably had Barnheart symptoms since I was a kid on my grandfather's farm. Once I discovered the relationship between the fruit trees that I would climb and the bees he raised that flitted about the blossoms--I had Barnheart. You're onto something big here. I want to help you make "Barnheart" this year's "Locavore". This is a movement! Chris DiAlfredi chrisdialfredi@yahoo.com

sue_35
2/3/2010 9:36:52 AM
Hi-My name is Sue and I have Barnheart! I spent the first 17 years of my life trying to get away from a dairy farm and live in the "big city". I must be a late-bloomer, because it took me until almost 40 to realize what a fool I was to want to get away. I've spent the last 10 years trying to get back. I quit the best job I have ever had and am heading towards this dream. In fact, today we are signing the papers for a place with property and I come across this article!! Encouragement for those that long for this lifestyle--it only takes getting your priorities right and a little insanity! It takes trading abundance for a dream. Dreams are important to follow and the real ones won't leave you alone until you act on them. None of us are promised tomorrow. We must live life today. It is the choices we make in life that define our lives. Is it really important to keep up with the Jones's?Don't let anything stop you! I used to tell my husband that I'd rather be running a goat farm than battle traffic and the stress of my job everyday. He actually made a business plan for it!! That's love! But the point is, there are ways of getting what you want. Start thinking outside the box and do it!

Michael Amoroso_4
2/3/2010 9:25:35 AM
My name is MIchael, I have had Barnheart all my life so far I get enormus pleasure out of planting anything and watching it's first sprout and finally it growing. As a child I got to Visit my Grand parents truck farm ( unless you have a malignant case of barnheart you wont know what a truck farm is ) I say what seemed like miles of peppers and squash and tomatoes, I saw corn fields that seemed to last forever and wheat that was the most beautiful sight in the world. My uncles always knew just what to do to make things work even if it was to move the wheels on the tractor in or out ( it was a small farmall) They had cows, pigs and at one time chickens, this was a magical place that I couldnt wait to visit again, I have always tried to re make that place but with no sucess, Now I own 12 acres in Wyoming and people say that I cannot make a farm here but I will show them that I can do anything I want and have tilled up an acre of hard pan and have a compost pile, this is my second year and I have plants sprouting all over the house I am ready to be a farmer.

Papillion Gardens Homestead_2
2/2/2010 10:33:37 PM
Hi, my name is Tj, I have a hobby farm and little time to work it. This article is priceless. I feel exactly the same as the Jenna. It's also wonderful to know there are many more who feel like I do.... Ha! This is beginning to sound like a group therapy session!

Sonya_7
2/2/2010 10:07:24 PM
Hello My name is Sonya and I have Barnheart. I've known about my condition now for some time but I couldn't give it a name until now. Just today as my cubicle closed in on me, I made my way to the Fedco website and browsed veggie seeds. Thanks for the defining the path to a cure.

RedneckEngineer_2
2/1/2010 7:52:49 PM
My name is Wes, and since i was 15 i have had a bad case of Barnheart. I have been making the most of having a decent sized garden and raising 150 chickens for meat a year. A long shot, however from my homestead dream. After college ill start making this dream a reality and beat off this severe case of Barnhart!

Tim_47
2/1/2010 7:28:34 AM
This piece is brilliant. Having to live in the concrete jungle known as North Jersey, my condition is almost insufferable. To add salt to the wound, I am currently in between permanent residences, preventing me from starting my heirloom seeds indoors and I have begun planning the garden at the house I don't even own yet. In the meantime, I spend weekends walking around the local garden center greenhouse wishing the sun was just a little stronger. As a 22 year old, recent college graduate, I wish farming in NJ was a viable option. Until then, I will read Mother Earth News, save my seed catalogs from previous years to read in the off season, and compost everything imaginable. My name is Tim. And I have Barnheart.

trevor_6
1/30/2010 6:18:56 PM
I know your piece was a little tongue-in-cheek, but it brought tears to my eyes. I have probably the worst case of barnheart the universe has ever produced. I am sickened that i depend on food that is barged into my city, it's expensive, and rarely fresh. I've yearned for years now to grow an olive plantation, to produce organic extra virgin olive oil and organic honey. I dream of having a garden large enough to feed no only my family but all of my neighbors. I'd love to have goats and chickens, because I love cheese, yogurt and omelets. I'd consider my self a rich man if i had a nursery and planted fruit and nut trees for others so that their children could one day savor apples so fresh from the tree that they're still warm from the sun. Few things in life can give as much joy as husbandry, it's our heritage as human beings, to care for our grounds and bring forth good fruit.

jeff Callahan
1/30/2010 10:41:13 AM
I have Barnheart, but mine is almost cured. I was almost overcome with it, but then i took the cure. I LEFT MY JOB in an office as an administrator, moved 250 miles and went to work on a farm. I now live in a tin-roof house, have gone from one dog to three dogs and a cat. I am with my EX wife of 29 years and have never been happier. I am freezing my ass off with six inches of snow on the ground and at 47 yrs old have started my life over. My advice to anyone with Barnheart is to JUST DO IT. Don't wait. Life is what happens when you wait for that ship to come in, and if you blink, you'll miss it. You might get hungry, you might get cold, but you will NEVER regret it.

Julie Adolf
1/29/2010 1:07:14 PM
Hi, I'm Julie, and I've had Barnheart since I was 7 and used to watch Little House on the Prairie religiously. My best memories are the two weeks each summer that I would spend on my aunt's farm...it was bliss. Now, I know farming is not blissful...it's incredibly hard work. Still, I love the idea of dropping out of the crazy commercial life and becoming self-sustainable. To get my farming fix, I currently have about 5,000 seeds germinating downstairs for my heirloom plant business...did I mention that we live in a suburban neighborhood with less than an acre? We have plants coming out of our ears! I'm trying to get my darling hubby to agree to a farm vacation. We'll see how that goes! Until then...so glad to know there are others of us out there, secretly longing for our patch of earth... Julie www.gardendelights-sc.com

Janice Karpinen_9
1/28/2010 5:40:56 PM
OMG, Hi, I'm Janice and I have Barnheart! Yes, I do. I'm so glad to know that I am not alone. I come from Brewester,NY and moved to S.Florida with my parents some years ago. Since then I find myself pineing for the fields. People say, what fields, you grew up in the sub of NY. They just don't get it. I had 9 apple trees, climbed them every day and fell into rotten apples most of the time, had a family garden which was the size of many peoples backyards these days. Yea!!!! I miss that. I've gone to the NC Mountains a few times and find peace, instead of going to the mall, I get dirty in my little garden, I plant string beans in my hanging baskets. And unlike many, I am unemployed after 20 years of corporate america and I'm actually happy. Not that I didn't love my job, because I did, I'm just happier now. Still in S.Fla, looking for my spot in a place called home....on a farm, with some livestock to call wilbur! Thanks everyone!

ShinguJohn
1/27/2010 11:28:30 PM
Hello. My name is John, and I'm a Barnheart. Thanks for giving us a voice, Jenna. Grew up between the burbs and the desert, but have wanted to be a farmer for the past 25 years (since second grade). There's something about large animals that calms me as nothing else can. There are holes in my heart, as I currently have no dogs or animals... nor am I likely to in the next year. My veg garden and youtube livestock clips keep me going though, and I admit to infecting my 2 year old daughter with my affliction. Barnheart. Wife's still complains about not having a TV, but she smiles now and then when we (daughter and I) come in from the garden with filthy hands and knees, arms loaded with organic produce.

Holly Jones_4
1/27/2010 2:16:52 PM
Hi, yeah I have it too. Live on a downtown canyon with chickens at the bottom of the lot. My sweet rooster thinks it's cool to sleep in the basement so that he doesn't wake the neighbors. We have just installed rainwater tanks to reduce municipal water use, and the garden is making a difference in our diet. But I miss the farm where I grew up. There's only so much one can do in an urban setting, even our unusual lot. But we have to do it. The fewer meals we eat from commercial farms, the healthier we are. I'm afraid of bees, but if I thought I could get away with it I'd raise them too.

Lori_35
1/27/2010 1:31:31 PM
Hi,just wanted to let those suffering with barnheart not to give up hope. I'm 62, and for my 60th birthday, finally got the horses I've wanted since I was five years old! 15 years ago, two of my sons and I built a small house by pooling our money and their skills...sold it for cash, and bought 40 acres with a well and two creeks, 13 acres of timber, the rest in tillable. During the time it to build that house, we didn't have Christmas, go to fast food, buy anything we could get by without...all went into the house. Now we have our dream. Horses, chickens and other fowl, sheep, a beef cow and milk cow. I continued to work as a teacher out of town (in Chicago inner city) until I retired this past spring. Income went down 80%...lots of work to do on the "farm", but I have to tell you I have never been more content. Even shoveling manure, I think "Thank you, God, for this great life'>

Robin_21
1/27/2010 11:10:17 AM
Welcome Jenna, My name is Robin and I too suffer from Barnheart. I have found that every year it gets just a bit harder to manage. Someday, I too will have my own farm and play in the dirt and hang around livestock and love every minute of it! **sigh**

brian_38
1/26/2010 3:10:45 PM
Wow, this describes me to a "T". I can't wait to get out of this neighborhood and get on to a piece of property. Unfortunately, the first step is not easy in Michigan, especially when one is unemployed!

Donna_59
1/25/2010 10:29:42 PM
Jenna, you have put into words what I feel everyday!! I am not alone or crazy!! I work a day job in an office cubicle and hate it, but it pays the bills and it's necessary right now. I live in a small city which doesn't even allow for owning chickens (though residents tried to change that rule). My husband and I are planning to move out to a more rural area where we can have a garden, livestock, chickens, etc.. in a couple of years. I'm nearing 50 and losing patience waiting for my rural, chicken-owning dreams to come to fruition. Fortunately, I have a wonderful husband who understands. He's a country boy and grew up on a small farm.

Dawn Pfahl
1/25/2010 10:00:35 PM
I'm Dawn, and I have Barnheart. I inherited it from my father. He's now in his 50s and finally living on a farm where he raises organic-fed poultry and gardens a bit. I'm living in a city where I'm building up our tiny ~170sqft "yard" into a raised-bed gardener's delight, and dreaming of chickens. My fiance has tolerated the gardening pretty well... but he insists we stay close to the city for work and convenience so I'm calming my indoor woes with dreams of a few acres of our own, on the outskirts of the city, where we can shock the suburbanites with edible landscaping (and edible lawnmowers!).

familyfarmers
1/25/2010 6:32:14 PM
We already farm to some extent, but we always dream of farming more and becoming more diversified in our small family farm, allowing us to sustain ourselves from the farm proceeds. So with that said we have barnheart.

Regina_2
1/25/2010 3:44:07 PM
I am in the same shoes as Maggie, miltary. We are on our last tour of duty after serving 20 years in the Navy. We are only 3 short years from our farm dreams and we cannot wait. We are currently living in the suburbs and it's driving me batty. I have looked for farm volunteer opportunities, but I am having a hard time finding anything even through the local extension office. I have Barnheart without a doubt! Born and raised in the Ozarks, can't wait to go home and stay. Thanks for the article it was a blessing:)

Patti_18
1/25/2010 3:01:50 PM
I am another Patti with Barnheart. I didn't know there was a name for it! I am so tired of paying someone else to board our horses, not to mention the fact that I could take the same amount of money and pay on a mortgage for a small farm. I want to be able to walk out the door the hug our horses whenever I want...raise chickens...start seedlings in a greenhouse...have room for our dogs to run, etc. All I have where I live now is a small corner of the yard to grow a few vegetables. I've almost given up on that, because there's not enough sun there... Great article!

Care_1
1/25/2010 2:53:58 PM
I have Barnheart! Oh yes! All my life! I was raised in the suburbs by parents who were raised the same way. They loved it. I hated it. I remember as a small child I literally cried as I begged my dad to move us to a farm.Finally at 45 I live in the country. I've never been happier! I have a nice garden and chickens my grand daughter loves feeding them their daily treat of scratch). I dream of breeding Indian runner ducks and to have a couple goats to milk. I scour over books and research for hours online about ducks and goats. My husband and I rent now, but hope to own our own little piece of heaven. While at work (a cashier at a local feed store) I can't wait to get home and breathe in the fresh air, gather eggs, and work in my garden. I hope I never get cured of Barnheart!

Suzy_3
1/25/2010 1:18:16 PM
Jenna, Thanks so much for diagnosing me...I'm crying right now as I digest all this. You absolutely nailed it! I've had the longing for only a couple of years but it's a very aggressive case! I'm learning to deal with it but to my delight my case is contagious and I have some great friends and some new friends who help me to medicate my feelings and my needs. In the past year I've gotten chickens in my backyard and a couple of delightful sheep that I get to keep on a friend's property. Hopefully soon I'll be doing more as another friend has 10 acres that he wants to 'add' to my 'farm'!!! I'm Suzy and I have Barnheart.

P L
1/25/2010 2:21:31 AM
My name is Patti. I have Barnheart. My family thinks I'm a hippy born in the wrong era. I have to fight hard to be normal, but I secretly know as I move swiftly past my mid thirties that I'm going to be some wierd old lady living in a house all alone (if I am very fortunate and can pay off my debt from my earlier idiocies...) with about twenty cats, a couple of dogs, I'm sure some goats, a bunch of chickens, and a pottery wheel and things growing all over the place in old milk cartons on window sills and the kitchen table. Actually... come to think of it, that old lady sounds an awful lot like my Grandma... LOL She was always... happy... Hmm....

Jared Barnhart
1/24/2010 11:20:22 AM
My last name actually IS Barnhart, and I too have the disease.

Sunny_8
1/24/2010 10:42:38 AM
I have Barnheart. Every time my husband and I go home to Alabama to visit, I fantasize about real estate catalogues and torture myself with viewing ranch houses on perfect 3 acre plots of land. I envision our children growing up on home-grown heritage veggies and fruits and collecting my own eggs. Sometimes I even go so far as to fantasize about making my own cheese from my own small-breed cow. I think about having a bed and breakfast and taking newlyweds on hay-rides. Some day. Some day soon.

Maggie_13
1/23/2010 8:50:34 PM
Hi, my name is Maggie and I have Barnheart. My husband is in the military and so we are unable yet to 'buy the farm'. I long for the day when we can dig in some roots and plant ourselves. I, for one, shall not be moving ever again after that. When I am having an acute attack of Barnheart, I peruse through United Country Realty or some other similiar site and choose my fantasy farm that I would live on if it were today. For now, I have 3 small raised beds and am amazed at how much I can harvest from them. I work one weekend a month at a farm just to soothe my soul for the month following. I highly recommend it, it helps tremendously. For my fellow Barnheart sufferers, never give up your dreams! Work towards them little by little and in many ways you will find that you can 'farm' in a small way no matter where you are!

Appalachian
1/23/2010 7:34:45 PM
Barnheart sufferer! If you want a quick cure, head over to your nearest farmer who has a three acres of green beans, onions, corn, pumpkins, whatever! Volunteer to spend a day - heck, even a couple hours - picking veggies. Do this on a day when it's 110 degrees in the shade as the sun starts to set. Come back the next day to milk the cows before the sun comes up and then watch the feller as he tries to fix the tractor! This is a great cure for the infliction that takes you away from a comfy life to the mercies of mother nature. In truth, though, I think there's a lot worse things to suffer from, and as far as fantasies go, it's a heck of a lot healthier than other distractions can be! One day if we keep doing these little things to remind us of our humanity, we will arrive.

Marcia_4
1/23/2010 11:19:58 AM
Hi, my name is Marcia and I have Barnheart. I have found myself at a desk job feeling trapped and suffocated by 2PM. I would actually have to step outside the office and take a stroll around the building, telling myself I can make it through the day. That's when you know you were meant to work outdoors! The fresh air and the sun on your face - ahhh! I have a 1-acre garden and am currently pouring over seed catalogs and plotting the 2010 garden plan on my computer. I have been researching plans for chicken coops and subscribing to homesteader blogs as I find them. And I've often wondered if there is another farmer soul like me out there to share my dreams without the "you are crazy" looks shooting back at me. Winters are the toughest because you spend way too much time indoors. Waiting for spring....

MC_2
1/23/2010 10:50:58 AM
I've had Barnheart for almost 20 years now. Whatever you do, don't ignore it or deny it and hope it will go away. It won't. You can learn to "act normal." You can even fight it by telling yourself that it's terribly hard, unremitting work, that you will never be prosperous, that you will, in fact, probably starve. You can drive it into remission. But it will come back, and it will be worse. You wake up one day and you hate the grocery store, the parking lot, the housing development, and the business park. You drive down the street, on your way to where-ever, and find that you've got a raging lust to plow them all under and plant something organic. A friend of mine also suffers from Barnheart. She is an engineer and the president of her HOA. She has to fight the urge to require everyone in the development to have a clothesline, a garden, and chickens. She's winning the fight to "be normal." She's also dying by inches.

kericapen
1/22/2010 9:50:46 PM
Hello- My name is Keri and I have Barnheart. I have plans for my homestead. I live in an apartment.... I get several seed catalogues and have no garden (right now) I dream about heritage livestock :) Thank you for letting me know that I am not alone!

Lewis_4
1/22/2010 10:15:13 AM
Hello - My name is Lewis and I have Barnheart. It all started many years ago when I planted a pumpkin seed in the lava rocks surrounding the front porch of my home in Chicago. The seed sprouted and by the fall I had three average but very nice looking pumpkins. It was at that point I started secretly planting seeds everywhere I could hoping I would not be caught. Today I have a plot in a community garden, and I long for an acre. I suppose that is the sickness, for when I eventually obtain the acre I will then “need” forty acres, then MORE!

Michelle_63
1/21/2010 7:56:00 PM
My name is Michelle and I have Barnheart too. I wasn't aware that there were other out there like me. I thought I was alone. It's nice to know what I have has a name. Thank you.

Paul Storm
1/21/2010 6:00:03 PM
When I discovered I had barnheart, I didn't know what to call it. I just knew that I wanted to be a farmer and if I ever won the lottery, and instead of thinkin' I'd be on the world's longest vacation, I'd rather just buy some acerage where I could grow as much as possible, in the most sustainable way imaginable. That day changed how I looked at myself, and the world.

Bert_5
1/21/2010 1:52:33 PM
I'm Bert and I have Barnheart too







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