Our Tenth “First View”

By , December 4, 2014

Today we mark an important family holiday, First View, the anniversary of the day we first saw the “homestead.” In fact, today marks the 10th anniversary of that happy day when, almost on a lark, we changed the course of our lives forever.

Ten years later, the first view is still much the same, even to the amount of snow (Photo: Mark A. Zeiger).

Ten years later, the first view is still much the same, even the amount of snow (Photo: Mark A. Zeiger).

How much has changed in the ensuing ten years! Aly, a bright, skinny 11-year-old, has grown into a beautiful young woman, who will return home for Christmas from college in a few weeks. Michelle and I are grayer, I seem to have a lot less hair, but far more fit than the two people who hiked out that day to look at a property for sale in the woods. We are all very different people than we would have been had we not embarked on this adventure.

Recently, returning from town, Michelle and I stood on the point in the trail from which we first looked down and got our first glimpse of the “homestead.” We reminisced about our expectations, fears, and excitement, the overwhelming curiosity, and the sense of wonder that engulfed us as we wandered around the strange property, with all its odd, handmade buildings and fixtures. Little did we know the joy we would come to know living here!

You can read the whole story of that visit in our essay, First View: A Homestead-Made Holiday. You may notice that I posted it on December 5th. For many years after “establishing'” the holiday, we thought we’d visited on December 5th, based on an incorrect date setting on the digital camera we used for reference shots. We figured it out, as I confessed in the post, Fixing the Date. Funny, nowhere in that essay do I mention checking my 2004 Franklin Planner pages. That should have been my first stop! I had two tasks listed on that day: give Aly her allowance, and ferry to Haines to look at property! I’m still not sure I’ve changed all the many references to the incorrect date throughout the blog.

At any rate, now we know the proper day to celebrate, and celebrate we will. I’m not sure how, at the moment—I’m unlikely to venture down on the icy rocks to fish; we haven’t seen any porcupine around lately; likely I’ll check the root cellar for garden produce, and a bottle of homemade wine. A simple meal makes a simple celebration for a simple holiday, made by hand. Happy First View!

3 Responses to “Our Tenth “First View””

  1. Michelle says:

    This view of the property from the trail above the house makes me happy and excited every time I see it. Truly, every time. As we hiked out to the car this morning, I realized we’ve spent nearly 20% of our lives with this property, and Aly has spent nearly half of her life here. Amazing!
    Happy First View, Mark and Aly!
    Michelle/Mom

  2. Linn Hartman says:

    Did no want to highjack your blog comments for a personal thought but hope you will see this as supportive of your lifestyle – keep doing what your doing:

    Been an interesting week – I now know what is wrong with this country – decided I would do a little car shopping this week – try it to get your heart pumping – I go in and say what do you have in the mid $200 or less and 60 months or less – after the usual routine of setting at the little table and the salesperson getting up and running off to talk with the sales manager we come to the big moment – the deal is presented – $435+ for approx. 73 months – I look in disbelief – just wanted to get from A to B not live in the thing listening to my Bluetooth – I don’t even know what Bluetooth is – when I finally get composed and say don’t think so he looks at me in disbelief – why that is our average deal – in fact Chrysler has just come out with 82 month financing – what’s wrong he says are we close what can we do to get your business – two things wrong to begin with -1 they don’t make a car worth $435+ after 70 + months and 2 I could die of old age before the 70+ months was up – I admit I am getting old and don’t live in the real world sometimes but this is nuts – if this is the average deal today then the average car buyer is nuts – sorry folks but this is what it is – needless to say the car buying thought is out of my system – have a good weekend

  3. Mark Zeiger says:

    Linn, I sold cars in New York state for 4 loooong months when I was just out of college. What I learned in that job shocked me. Unfortunately, about the only thing I retained from the education there is that it may be better to buy private and used!

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