Grit Blogs > Cultivating a Dream

A New Life

Pauline HyltonOur cell phones stopped working about half way up the mountain. Siri was speechless. After a few wrong turns, we pulled up to a driveway. 

A man with white hair opened an iron gate while three happy farm dogs followed our car until we stopped.

Tom and I assumed we were safe and ventured out to great tail-wagging. 

“You must be Kelly’s new friends. My name is Mike. Glad to have you.”

Who knew that at the 30-year-celebration for our pastor in Clearwater, Florida, we’d meet a farmer’s wife who lived about 45 minutes from our North Carolina property?

The Lord has a way of doing that.

So, after a fifteen-minute meeting and an invitation to visit on our next trip north, we entered Michael and Kelly Josey’s 200-acre parcel on top of a mountain with a view of both the Blue Ridge and Shenandoah mountains.


In a kitchen big enough to house a small movie theatre, we talked while Kelly cooked. She peeled fresh peaches and placed them in homemade piecrusts. Two chickens were slathered with butter and covered with secret spices. After the piecrusts, Kelly kneaded dough and baked several loaves of fresh bread. She cooked fresh corn and beans for sides. And did I mention we had peach pie?

And while she cooked in her big farm kitchen, we shared our big farm dream. We asked questions. We listened to advice. We laughed and we prayed.

And then we ate. As my daddy used to say, “That was a sumptuous repast. Besides that, it was good.” And it was.

After lunch, we toured their land by car. Then we ventured out on foot. We strolled along the Dan River and listened to unfamiliar sounds. River and forest sounds. No honking. No airplanes or TV’s or cell phones ringing.

We arrived back home. It was evening time, so Michael called the cows—and they came home.

We’d spent the entire day on the mountain.

The golden sun disappeared over a carpet of green trees. It was the kind of scene and the kind of day that made you smile on the inside.

I wondered if the settlers had days like that. Days where they traveled to a neighboring farm house and visited.

Really talked.


We’re closer to our dream. The business sold, we’re packing for Canaan, and the obligatory garage sale is Friday.

And when the house sells, we’ll go.

To a new place. To a new life. To new friends.

Friends like Mike and Kelly.

I can’t wait.

But I'm still scared.