The Story of the Ranch

The story of our ranch started one day when Becky took her 4 little kids to the library and picked up an “On the Farm” VHS movie.  She brought it home and put it in to watch.  Little did she know, that movie would change their lives.

Josh had his computer in the same room as the t.v.  That day Josh was at home working at the computer on a house drawing.  So after checking with Josh to see if it was ok with him to have a movie going while he was working, Becky put the farm movie in for the kids.  Normally putting in a movie wouldn’t bother him at all.

Josh had grown up on a dairy farm.  He loved the farm life as a kid!  He was a typical farm kid that could build just about anything.  He was good at building so when he left home to go to school at Brigham Young University, going into Contruction Managment was an practical choice for a profession.  After Josh finished school, Josh and Becky bought a house by his parents dairy farm and he started his own construction company building custom homes.

But, putting in that farm movie that day triggered something inside him.  Becky joked with Josh that he must have been having a really hard day with the auto-cad program!  As Josh sat their listening to the kids’s farm movie, he realized that he wasn’t doing what he really wanted to do.

You see, the original plan was to make alot of money in construction, help bail the family dairy farm out of debt and then do the dairy farm full-time.

But that day Josh realized he didn’t want to wait to see if that day would ever come.  Josh didn’t want to waste those precious years of the children growing up while he was chasing after money so that our family could someday, possibly live the lifestyle he had while growing up.  Now all of a sudden, it wasn’t about waiting anymore. It was about just jumping in and doing.

Josh called his dad up and asked his dad if he’d be willing to let Josh buy some dairy cows and join forces with his Dad.  His Dad said yes and they bought some cows.

Now to make a long story short, during that  next year all those cows started dying.  It was unreal.  Nothing worked out.  Even the alfalfa crop didn’t do very well.  But it made both Josh and his Dad start to think.  Maybe this wasn’t where we were supposed to be…

To make an even longer story short, Josh’s Dad decided to sell the family dairy farm.  Through much prayer, searching and long roadtrips, Josh and his Dad found a piece of land in Donnelly, Idaho.  Literally, thru a series of miracles, they were able to purchase the land.

There was nothing there but a piece of land- no power,phone lines or anything.

Everything there today has built from the ground up.But just building everything from scratch wasn’t just the amazing part.  It was how we lived while we were building things.

At the time they left for Donnelly, Becky had 5 kids under 5.  The youngest was 11 months old.  They pulled the oldest child out of school for the last few weeks of kindergarten and then came up.

But come up to what??  In the weeks previous to Becky coming up, Josh had gone up and built his parents a bunk house.  The first night they came up there, they bunked with Josh’s parents and it was pouring rain outside.

The next day they put up a sheepherders hut that they had sewed while back in Boise.  Yes, they sewed their own sheepherders hut!  Josh cut out the pieces and Becky sewed it.  They brought it to Donnelly and set it up.  The tent was set up on a wood floor suspended above the ground with wood poles.  That way they could stay away from the moist ground.  They put a stove in it, put a bed in it, put mattress pads and sleeping bags on the floor for the 4 kids, and set a crib up for the youngest.  Along the edges were plastic drawers that we put the kids clothes in.  A few weeks later they built an “addition” on and added some shelving to store food on. There was a fire pit outside the front “flap” where we cooked.

Laundry was washed by hand.  What an easy job with a bottle of soap, a tub of water and 5 little kids!  Then it was set out to dry on the line.

50 gallon water drums were filled with water at the neighbors house and brought back to the tent to use.They got a porta potty to use as the “facilities”.  The kids thought that was the coolest thing!  Especially, the hand sanitizer!

In the morning, mattress pads were put up to have room to walk around.  The kids got clothes out of their bins.  Water was heated on top of the wood stove to use for hand washing and dishes.

The kids were so happy and had a great time!  it was one big camping trip!  The key was for Becky to stay happy and sane!  HAH!

Well, it worked out just fine!  (Athough they noticed Becky had sort of a twitch for years after.  It also took her about 3 years after that to go camping again.)  Many wonderful memories were made.

Also, the summer olympics were on that summer so in true, redneck fashion, they hoisted an antenna just so they could watch the olympics in the summer evenings.

While they were living in the tent, Josh was building their house…….

Course while Josh was working , the kids were having the time of their lives…

Today the story of the Ranch continues on… Josh and Becky are still working hard and building and improving this ranch… trying to make it into a wonderful haven where people can come and rest from the cares of the world and where, most importantly, they can raise a bunch of good kids who know how to work hard.  They are so glad for that farm video Becky borrowed from the library that day.  It made them realize that they needed to live for today and not for someday.