My family lived on a Ranch full time from 1993 until 2015. We were a 5th generation family farm.
I am writing this blog to share my experiences living there. It is best to read the blog chronologically by going through the archives, starting with the introduction in January of 2010.
The blog starts with the arrival of my great-grandparents to the farm in 1947 and will follow the families to the present.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Wherever you receive love, that's your home

        Times needs to pass before a story can be told, to allow reality to shift into fiction. A space where one can look back, not sure exactly of the details anymore. I needed that distance before I could resume the story of the farm.
       We are heading into our third Christmas away from the farm. I know for certain now that a place is not home, not an identity, a reason for being. All that the farm was is no longer true. What is left is more of a sensory sense of loss. I miss how the farm smelled, how a summer evening would feel, air on the skin. The earth that others of the family had walked on, going generations back.
         I would like to tell the story without resentment, with a sense of acceptance and  equanimity. It was with this hope that I reunited the blog under Edmond's Bastion. Edmond is the name of my father, although he went by Eddy in Canada. Bastion is the name of the mountain that is behind the ranch. Originally, the farm was named Ferme Fleurdelys when it was bought by my great grandparents in 1947, evolving into Bastion Ranch in the late 1950s. I used Bastion as a way to commemorate the mountain and a sense of place, but also the other meaning of the word which is to protect or preserve a quality. The quality that I seek in this story is the essence of our lives on the ranch, without the trauma and overwhelming grief that the final years brought.
         The loss of the farm has given us new opportunities and set our children and ourselves free from the nightmare of operating a multi-family operation. We travel a lot more now then we did when living on the ranch with all of it's complications. On so many levels life is simpler. We don't have as many visitors as we did living on the waterfront with multiple comfortable places to sleep, and we find that we don't miss that.
          The gatherings we had at the Ranch were extraordinary in their frequency and size. I am thankful that we shared our space with the people we did over the years. Our new home has also seen it's share of festivities.
          There's a Tibetan saying that captures how we feel about our new home:
"Wherever you have friends that's your country, and wherever you receive love, that's your home"

First Christmas in the new house.

Playing our traditional gift game last Christmas. This year we need to fit 25 people into our living room.

Our house warming party last year.