Our Journey

The Sanctum Tree: Humble Beginnings

The Sanctum Tree: Humble Beginnings

The Sanctum Tree: story of building a modern permaculture homestead from scratch. Read more at SanctumTree.com

This is the start of our journey to self-sustainability.

It feels as though we have not even begun yet. A dream to have our own modern permaculture homestead has been born in our heart and is starting to sprout like a tiny seedling. We have little experience, but we are ready to take on this grand idea. Chickens, goats, gardening, and all.

The little experience we do have encompasses both triumphs and failures.

I remember as a little girl spending carefree summer days at my grandparents farm, watching my grandma feed the chickens and following along as my brother let the cows out to pasture. Although I look back to those days with warm-hearted nostalgia, I can’t say much for the experience part.

Humble Beginnings. Story of building a modern permaculture homestead. Read more at SanctumTree.comOur first experience with “farm animals” was raising two indian runner ducks, affectionately named Kiki and Coco. They were rescues that we took home from a local park. The previous owners left them there, hoping they would fend for themselves, but they were already so domesticated that they were helpless to get away from the chasing bully kids. They didn’t even know how to get in the river to swim away. So we gave them a home and they spent the remainder of the summer in our backyard, eating bugs and making mud holes (much to my dismay). Then sadly, a storm came through one fall night, and with the storm came a skunk that took them away.


The Sanctum Tree: story of building a modern permaculture homestead from scratch. Read more at SanctumTree.com

The next farm adventure we had was raising two goats – a momma and baby goat. Orange blossom and Coconut Cream (affectionately named by my daughters) were given to us by my generous uncle. We were so excited to finally have some fresh, raw goat milk!


The Sanctum Tree: story of building a modern permaculture homestead from scratch. Read more at SanctumTree.com

My husband got to work straight away on a milking stanchion. He watched some videos on youtube, made a plan,  and built the stanchion out of repurposed pallet wood and some lumber we had lying around. Success! We were both surprised and delighted at how good and sturdy it turned out. However, It ended up purple, since he took the girls with him to the paint store. ^_^



We also got a really neat mason jar milking machine we found on amazon. It was homemade from Dansha farms. It was super easy to use. Just press the button and release, then watch the milk come pouring out into the mason jar! Except, we were confused as to why we were only getting a cup of milk each time, regardless of how much we increased the frequency of milking.

The mystery was solved whenever we made the decision to sell the goats. When I text a picture to our local “goat farm lady” asking her if she was interested in them, she replied, “Those are not milk goats.” What we thought were Nubian milking goats, turned out to be Boer meat goats – A humorous newbie mistake! In the end it turned out alright, as Coconut Cream and Orange Blossom found a good home, grazing to their heart’s content and serving the dual purpose of pets and lawnmowers. The decision to sell the goats came with the decision to sell our house, be completely free of debt, and find a place to build a permaculture homestead.

We are starting from scratch. This is the beginning of a beautiful journey. But great ideas take time to build and come to life.   We invite you to join us on this journey. Learn from our mistakes. Laugh with us. Grow with us. Be inspired.

What stage of self-sufficiency are you? Do you have any funny stories to share about your homestead adventures?

Humble Beginnings: The Sanctum Tree. Building a modern permaculture homestead from scratch. SanctumTree.com

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  1. I am happy for you guys.God has always be with you whereever you are. I pray that your homestead adventure will come together smoothly. May He always bless your home. Many blessings toyou and the rest od the family.

  2. Beautiful and inspirational! We have a dream to run a self sufficient commune, where people can come and work together to learn to live off of the land. A friend of ours lived in a Christian commune in the 70’s and they even made a documentary about them. It was a thing of beauty. I’m looking forward to see how it all unfolds in your quest to become self sufficient.

    1. Thank you, Carly. That’s a wonderful dream! That is something similar to what we have thought about too, somewhere down the road. Once we have our Permaculture Homestead established we would like to offer free internships and educational programs (similar to polyface farms) to teach people how to be more self-sufficient. We would also like to have a therapeutic animal program for mentally handicapped children/people. As well as a nutrition and educational program for natural healing for children with autoimmune diseases. So many ideas! Excited to see how the journey will unfold. Keep me updated as well!

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