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When you say "ranch" everybody pictures big red barns, a huge white farm house with a wide front porch and acres of golden rows of corn. What if you can't afford that right away? Should you give up your dream?
After we bought our property, we didn't start with a lot of cash. We had to make some decisions. First we needed to decide what things were most important. We needed animal enclosures, but that didn't mean we had to have that big red barn. Alpacas actually do better in a simple, more open design for their enclosures. They can get out of the sun, rain, and and wind. Also, they can usually roam the whole property during the day, if they chose.
It's best to avoid going into debt. Our ranch isn't making a lot of money, yet. We've built most of our enclosures ourselves and we have done it a little at a time. Pork Chops, the pig started in a small enclosure when he was small and last fall we were able to build a bigger one for him. We also learn as we go. We are making our mistakes at a slow, steady pace, instead of all at once in the beginning.
Our home is comfortable. Our animals are safe and content. We have the space we need to expand as we go. It is healthy to be patient as we build our ranch. It's fun to try to picture what our place will look like in 20 years.
"Lord be willing and the creek don't rise."
We have started a sustainable homestead by the seat of our pants! We make things up as we learn day by day. We are not experts, but we have discovered a lot of ways to not do things. Read along and comment and/or ask questions. Join us on this adventure!
Our mini ranch hand