So began the long, arduous process of culling through the remnants of the previous owner. Perhaps he was a bit of a pack rat. Maybe a garbage collector. Mostly ... it was simply a case of neglect. Garbage was everywhere. My Son found even more when he gazed upward towards the sky and spotted junk hanging from the branch of a tree.
Leaning buildings were demolished. The barn was re-shingled. The shop was insulated, shingled, re-sided and doors were replaced. The excessive garbage was dragged out of buildings, the surrounding area and bushes. Bit by bit, hour by hour, year by year ... little things started to add up and there became a look that someone cared about the property.
The Dream was and always has been to turn this piece of land into a home. That is much easier said than done.
What do you do when the house that is on the property needs to be replaced from the bottom, up? And from the inside, out. The structural integrity was shaky at best. Every which way they looked at it there was no choice but to tear apart and rebuild that-which-was-standing. So the house was demolished and they opted to go for a do-over.
A small house was bought. A foundation was built. The existing house was moved onto the foundation. It sounds easy, doesn't it?
In two words? It wasn't.
My Son and His Girlfriend have logged more time and energy into their (eventual) new home than they can even begin to count (though they probably have a pretty accurate idea on the $$'s that have added up). It has to have been a labor of love because their level of commitment to the task has been unshakeable.
I cannot even begin to put into words the effort that each of them have devoted into this project called The Dream. There are times that they will not even speak of because the challenges were so unspeakable. There were challenges within the challenges within the challenge. Yet they persevered.
Fast forward to this Christmas. It has been over four years in the making, but My Son and His Girlfriend have finally 'come home' for Christmas. They have spent their Christmas holiday in their little home on the prairie.
They still have a quite a way to go before it becomes their permanent home but they do have everything except running water at the moment. It is getting close enough so that they can taste and experience the 'new life' that is awaiting them.
My Son invited me and his Younger Brother out for Christmas Dinner (on Boxing Day). His Girlfriend was spending Christmas with her out-of-province relatives and My Son was on his own. With their dogs. He worked on their house by day and when it came time to wrap things up ... he was already where he most wanted to be. He didn't have to travel anywhere to find his next meal, his bed or his home. He was already there.
I spoke to My Son a few times in the days that preceded our trek out to accept his supper invitation on Boxing Day. I have not heard 'happy' in his voice like this for a very long time.
We walked into their new home and we were enveloped in the aura of hopes and dreams. It is all coming together. The aroma of a roast chicken filled the air. Christmas lights adorned the banister on their brand new staircase from their porch into the kitchen...
Their home was decked out for Christmas and the necessities of life have found their way into their little home on the prairie ...
It is so close, they can quite literally 'taste' it right now. Their future, their hopes and their dreams are within reach. Would they appreciate it if they had not worked so hard for it? Possibly ... but I would think that each struggle and every challenge has made this illusive dream become even more precious. There is a shared commitment to this dream that goes far beyond a financial investment. I simply cannot imagine a price tag that could be placed upon this Dream that is becoming Reality.
They looked out onto the horizon together and they have found this ... an appreciation for having to work for their accomplishments in life. Today it is a home. Tomorrow ... their 'world'.
Congratulations on a Home Well Built. The sky is the limit when you put your heart and soul into what you believe in. Never stop believing ...