Compromising for a Happy Homestead

Homesteading was my dream first. Big Bee kind of stumbled into it when he asked me to marry him.

I tend to be on the more radical end of homesteading. If it were up to me, we’d be homeschooling 4 or 5 kids in a tiny house with no TV or plumbing, composting everything in sight, and making everything we own from scratch.

If I were still a single lady, I probably would live like that, minus the kids.

But I’m not a single lady, and I’m devoting the rest of my life to this very sweet, very bearded man.

Big Bee likes the idea of homesteading, of being self-sufficient and providing for our family. He’s a “worry about me-and-mine” kind of person. He also loves video games, HBO, and pooping in a toilet that flushes. He likes my home-cooked meals and plans to work side-by-side in our garden this summer, but he prefers Tide Pods to homemade laundry soap, has no interest in wearing anything I might figure out how to make out of wool, and was totally grossed out when I insisted he take my herbal tincture instead of Tums. So we’re learning to compromise.

It’s nice because we bring different skills to the table. I was raised in a family that didn’t have guns, while he grew up target shooting and hunting. I can’t imagine slaughtering anything bigger than a chicken or a rabbit without bawling my eyes out, and even then, I think it’s going to be hard for me. Big Bee’s family does an annual family pig slaughter. I’m more comfortable with small livestock–goats, chickens, ducks–while Big Bee is comfortable with the idea of pigs and cows.

I’m a crunchy, organic, veggie-gobbling witch who cares deeply about everything and has no problem expressing my very loud opinions all the time. Big Bee is a quiet, junk food junkie, meat-loving, agnostic gamer who only has something to say when it really matters. We disagree about a lot of things, but we also bring balance to our lifestyle. I think we make each other better people. I help him eat healthier by cooking up whole foods and keep him from being completely antisocial. He reminds me to let go and be more spontaneous when I’m over-planning and over-thinking everything.

I think our individual strengths are what make us strong as a whole.

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