The New Bedlam Farm

Jon painting the bathroom door, how he continues to surprise me.

One of the many things I used to do for a living was paint houses, inside and out. When I got divorced and started making my art part time, I vowed never to paint again.  I threw out my brushes and rollers and scrapers and spackle and gave away the paint bucket I kept them all in.  I threw out my painting clothes (except my work  boots, which are great around the farm).

Then we bought Florence’s house.  Our house, Jon’s and mine, my house.  And I finally feel like I’m home.

I love Bedlam Farm, where Jon and I fell in love and I started doing my work seriously for the first time in my life, and I learned how to care for and open myself up to the animals. It’s where I felt safe for the first time in my life.  I found myself on Bedlam Farm, and it will always be a magical place for me.  It has been my home and a wonderful one,  but it isn’t me.  For me Bedlam Farm is a threshold, a place to pass through.  I’ve faced the demons at the gate and now it’s time to move on.  To  the place Jon and I, as the people we are now, choose to live.  And now we’ve found that place, and it shouldn’t surprise me, but it does, that we have the same vision for it.  Basically do as little as possible to make it livable for us and the animals, then focus on what’s important to us, our lives together and our work.

So when we decided to paint the kitchen ourselves instead of hiring someone to do it,  I found I wasn’t apprehensive about it at all. It was as if another person had taken the vow never to paint again.  It held none of the old feelings or fears of being inadequate,  nor did it bring up old memories.  It was almost as if I had never painted before, except that I knew how to do it.  It was actually a pleasure, I’d even say fun.  And Jon and I did it together.  In between he mowed the lawn, and we danced to Bob Dylan, had lunch on the porch and visited Rocky.

I’ve bought sold, fixed up and lived in a lot of houses but this this the first time I’m doing it the way I want to do it. In a way this is really my first house.  And I intend to be there a long time and with Jon, make it the new Bedlam Farm, our home.

15 thoughts on “The New Bedlam Farm

  1. Great shot of Jon hard at work. Maria I know what you must feel about the new house. I met my husband , fell in love and moved 1400 miles to be with him , in his home. Three years later we bought “our” first house together. It changed both of our lives in a really great way. It opened us both up , allowed us to mesh our thoughts on what we wanted for ourselves in our new home and discover that we were much more alike than we had thought. We have lived here 9 years now and as much as I would still like a small farm , we have made this house our home together and I will be happy each and every day as long as I have the love of my life beside me. Congrats to you & Jon for doing this together !

  2. Beautiful love letter to your new home, Maria. The house and the land is already blessed by your love for it. Many long and happy years there!

  3. Maria, you touched my heart again with these thoughts. I hope you can feel my joy for you.
    I love to paint, I like the symbolic fresh start for the object or room. I’m glad you had fun with this job.

  4. Maria, This is a lovely post. It’s full of hope,happiness, fun and love to me.I think true love is very healing. It helps us to close the door on the wreckage of our past. It keeps us in the moment and gives us such freedom and acceptance so we can be our true great selves.
    The photo is most excellent. :))

  5. Maria, I’m so happy for you both. I have been there with you in spirit and in art all the way. Thanks for sharing this journey and the evolution of your art. Terah

  6. How wonderful that you are truly home now, Maria – it will be fully yours and Jon’s together as you make it your own through brush, broom, rag, mowing and dancing. Happiness! Thank you for sharing this wonderful new step!

  7. I’m so happy for you two! I have been reading Jon’s blog for 5 years now so I have seen your entrance into his life as a married woman restoring a Grange, I think it was. One thing I saw right away when Jon started taking pictures of you is how strong your hands are. Strong and capable, as you are strong and capable.
    Your posts are every bit as well written as his are, by the way. And being a woman and a quilter I can well relate to them. Blessings on both of you!

  8. You know when I first looked at the picture of Jon I thought – Wow, he has a camera and a paintbrush in his hand. Looking closer, obviously he doesn’t, and really how could he? I always picture Jon with his camera though :). Painting is therapeutic. It is so nice to read about your enthusiasm for your new home, your appreciation for all the gifts that came with Bedlam Farm and that life is sweet and continues on in wonderful exciting ways when we open up to it.

  9. What an adorable picture of Jon! Your farmhouse is gorgeous. I love old houses and those old farmhouses have the most appeal. It’s starting to look fresh and shiny, can almost smell the paint, while still retaining its original charm. Thanks for sharing the photos of this wonderful house. I’m glad you’re “home.”

  10. Just saying the word “home” is, to me, like a sigh or an contented exhale. Your home is already beautiful because you have blessed it with your love. It will just get prettier and prettier. Congratulations!

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