Sometimes I dream about taking my family and running away to a big farm in the country and opening my own farmstand, living off the land, and of course, taking my friends with me. On warm days like today, as I drive around town and smell the fresh spring air, eyeing lush green lawns crazy-spotted with bright yellow dandelions...it's easy to dream about laying out in a huge field and picking out animal-shapes in the clouds all day, every day. Listening to my kids run and play and scream with laughter. Watching the dogs romp and run and bark all they want. In this fantasy even the dog poop is a beautiful thing, and the corn and beans and pumpkins plant themselves, and the house is paid for, and we can live a life beholden to no one.
Just picture it: a huge, rambling farmhouse; something like the aunts' house in Practical Magic, except in farm country. Your best friends are your closest neighbors, just a walk down the road. You all help each other with cooking and cleaning and housework and errands and child-rearing, but there's plenty of space for everyone. You share fields, and together you plant and raise corn, and pumpkins, and grapes, and apples, and beans, and whatever other crops you like. You grow more than enough to feed your families, with a little extra you can sell at your farmstand down the road. In the fall, people come from miles around to pick apples and pumpkins. Year-round, they come to purchase fresh produce and the crafts you all make; they come to show their kids the variety of friendly animals you raise - chickens and horses and goats (especially FAINTING GOATS) and bunnies and kitties and puppies and who knows what else. At night, you work on your current novel, or you craft some new items for the store. Oh, and of course you and your girlfriends get together on the weekends and drink the wine you made from the grapes you're growing in your own tiny vineyard (which you also sell). And you bake fresh goods for the store too.
Then, as always, my dreams start to get a little too big for their britches, and I start working in my haunted bed and breakfast (it could be another house on the property!) and my Not House On The Rock house...plus a haunted house (or maybe a haunted hayride trail, since we're a farm and all) every Halloween and a number of other attractions for the families that come to visit us.
We're going to need a lot of land. But it sounds completely blissful to me. Who's with me?!