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Old 02-22-2011, 11:39 PM
Location: Temecula, CA
56 posts, read 103,728 times
Reputation: 74


If someone thinks this thread is better suited in the Sustainable Living board, please let me know.

Anyways, I feel like this is going to be a long post, so bless anyone's heart who reads it all. :]

I'm a 16 year old girl currently living in the Inland Empire in Southern California. I'm extremely mature for my age and I feel like a 20-something year old trapped in highschool. I've been doing a lot of thinking about what I want to do with my life in the past year while thinking of possible career paths. I'm not the person that has known they were going to be an orthopedic surgeon since they were 10. I still only have a slight idea what might work for me. I have a passion for horses and animals in general. I've always craved living on a ranch, and movies where young girls grow up on a farm in some rural town and get their own horses are usually going to make me cry and grin from ear to ear.

Anyways, I don't want to train horses, at least not on a large scale, nor do I want to run a boarding facility or lesson barn where I spend all of my time watching other people ride or taking care of other people's horses. I'd love to own a small homestead(I'm not sure how many acres..I've heard that in some places in order to have a horse on your property you have to have 5 acres. But I'm not sure how sound this rumor is) and ideally grow a large portion of what I need on a daily basis food wise. I'd have to live in an area where 3 acres doesn't cost $100,000, but I'm not thinking I'm going to stumble across anything great for a few bucks, either. I'm just wanting to spend under $100,000 for my land. Preferably under $50,000. I've grown up in a very typical home where my family is even reluctant to recycle. I'm by far the most environmentally conscious person in my family, and I don't want to live this way when I'm on my own.

I want the be able to have a large garden, lots of fruit trees, 6 or 7 chickens, a couple of horses, maybe a cow or some goats, and a few dogs around, too. I want a simpler life where I get to enjoy nature. I want to learn to do things that people used to know how to do! I've got quite the brown thumb at the moment, but I just built a raised bed recently and am growing strawberries, blueberries, onions, asparagus, and basil and trying my best to keep them all alive! I'm stubborn, incredibly driven, and not afraid to get my hands dirty.

My primary reason for doing all of this is so I can support myself very comfortably. I'm thinking of becoming an Ultrasound Technician, a job that makes about $60,000 on average around the US. You only need a 2 year associates degree from an accredited JC for that career(there is one about an hour away from me), and I figure that in the healthcare industry, it's pretty easy to find a job just about everywhere. I want to pay cash for property, and hopefully cash for just about everything else, too! The last thing I want is debt, which is also why I'm avoiding a career where I need a 4 year(or more) education from expensive state schools. My goal in life is not to make money. Hopefully that doesn't sound naive of me, but I honestly don't care WHAT i'm doing as long as I'm happy doing it and am able to support myself. I certainly don't need a 6 figure income and I'm not aiming for that, much to my parents' chagrin. I want to live in a city that there is at least a couple of medical centers so I could get a job as an Ultrasound Technician. I hope this won't be too hard, because even in rural areas, people still need medical attention! Definitely one reason I'm strongly considering the health care industry.

I want to buy a small log cabin package and build it myself, with the help of my Dad who has been a contractor for the past 25 years of his life. Ultimately, my goals are to live debt free, have livestock, grow my own food(or a good portion of it), and have property.

I come from a pretty large suburb, but it's a city with lots of horse country, as well. This place is very focused on material things, and it drives me crazy. I'd much rather live in a place where people are judged based on their character, not on the car they drive. I'm young, though, and I will be the first to admit that I do need human interaction I want to live somewhere that I'm able to meet people that have similar goals to me, maybe a city with a strong sense of community in the agricultural aspect. Ultimately I do want to get married to someone with a similar goal as me, someone who can deal with a very low maintenance, easy going girl. A cowboy wouldn't be too bad!

**OH!** I almost forgot! I'm pretty much in love with the pacific northwest. I went on a road trip from southern california to northern washington this summer with just me, my brother, and my cousin, and I had a blast. I stayed in Bremerton, WA for a few weeks, and I fell in love. Washington definitely has a special place in my heart, and I adore oregon quite a bit, too. I went along the 5 freeway the whole time, so I know the names of several of the cities along there. I'd love to get property in either NorCal(ehh...I'd preferaby like to be out of Califonria), Washington, or Oregon. But I'm definitely open to other states! I just love the beauty of those places and the access to the Pacific if I'm craving the beach.

Having a city nearby with some fun things to do as a young person would be great! I'm not really into a nightclub scene, but I do love music and I'd love to get into horse events like ranch sorting and team penning.

I've been completely spoiled by southern california weather, unfortunately. I've seen snow fall twice. Believe it or not, the most recent was in my own front yard! That was a bizarre day. Realistically, I don't think I could be happy being up to my eyebrows in snow for 4 months of the year. I'm pretty sure that equipped with the right clothing, I could deal with a good bit of snow for a two or so months of the year, though. I definitely want a wood stove in my cabin. Where I live it'll get up to 110 for a week or so during summer, and hover in the upper 90's for the next 7 weeks. I can handle heat, but humidity kills me. I do love the idea of southern hospitality and the people in the south, but gigantic brain-sucking bugs and disgusting humidity kind of discourage me. Maybe I'm just thinking of Florida? Not bashing on Florida, but all I ever hear about the place is how humid it is! Somewhere with a good growing season would be nice, since I do plan on growing a majority of my own food. If anyone's familiar with the USDA Hardiness Zone scale, somewhere between 4 and 7 would be great. I think I might be in an 8 zone right now...

All of my family lives in Southern California, or at least the family that I see on a monthly-at-worst basis. But apparently I have A LOT of 2nd cousins that I'd love to get to know in Oregon, Washington, and even a few in Montana.

Crime is something that I'm not a fan of...duh. :P Anyways, I've never shot a gun in my life, but I'm pretty sure that if I'm living in a rural area, I should at least learn how to shoot a gun and have one in my house just in case I should have to shoot a...oh I don't know, a hungry bear that has it's sight set on my cow? I also want dogs, and I plan on having at least one good guard dog. Anywhere that I won't be harassed would be great. Seeing as I'm not banking on living with a man as soon as I get to an area, somewhere that doesn't pray on single women would be great.

I'm really sorry about the length of this post, and I know I'm probably missing something. I hope I made things easier for the skimmers by bolding the most important things. Thank you so much to anyone who can help out or offer any advice.

Last edited by backwardsettenurb; 02-23-2011 at 12:47 AM..
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Old 02-23-2011, 06:54 AM
Location: Forests of Maine
30,781 posts, read 49,649,409 times
Reputation: 19234
Sounds like you have a solid vision for your future.

Ultrasound Tech, Radiology Tech, Urology Tech; they are all needed in hospitals and hospitals are everywhere.

I grew up in a farming community in California that has became a massive sprawling suburb, my siblings are still there farming.

I have known a handful of people who were each doing horse boarding / training gig. Sadly I have never even heard of anyone who was able to make a living doing it. Just an expensive hobby really.

I live in an area where organic / sustainable food production has been a growing trend.

Our local organic farmers association has a program where anyone interested in it can be a farm apprentice [live and work on a small scale farm, spend one or two days /week as a vendor in a Farmers Market, and receive a stipend], after 6 months to a year the surviving apprentices rotate to other farms. After 2 years as a journeyman they get to manage a farm by themselves. Then they try to locate a farm somewhere that the journeyman can buy or inherit.

I have no idea if any thing like this exists in California. Commercial Petro-Chem farming is mostly 'king' out there.

I think that everyone should be able to defend herself. Relying on a guy to do that is building a box for yourself that you might never be able to climb up out of. Though I agree that getting away from high crime areas is important. If you focus on your vision for your future a guy will likely come along who shares the same vision.

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Old 02-23-2011, 04:02 PM
Location: Temecula, CA
56 posts, read 103,728 times
Reputation: 74
After reading a thread you've posted on, I have been considering maine! The only thing is that it seems awfully cold...and I don't know how well I'd adjust up there. It's gorgeous, though! And lots of land with water on it is available, and I love that. That's a very cool program that you've got up there! I haven't heard of anything like it in California.
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Old 02-23-2011, 04:21 PM
Location: Forests of Maine
30,781 posts, read 49,649,409 times
Reputation: 19234

My family [all in California] are too afraid to visit us. Maine has a reputation

Do not look at moving here, it is a long distance. I only meant to provide you with some ideas. Things to look for.

At the extreme you might enjoy our Hippy Fair each September, just to see that young people like you do exist.

You mentioned Bremerton Wa, we lived there for 5 years, a very nice area. It is between the Seat-Tac metroplex of night-life and go energy; and the Olympic Penn's redwood forests. When we lived there a lot of suits from Seat-Tac were buying up every available inch of the Olympic Penn. Land prices really soared. I had a buddy who got 10 acres of forest there before the suits invaded. A really nice area, before they changed it.
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Old 02-23-2011, 08:04 PM
57,068 posts, read 81,467,526 times
Reputation: 12650
Ithaca NY is an area that would fit the bill as well.
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