The Chaos Magik Family

If you’ve made it this far, you have probably already read about our journey from science experiment to suburban-homestead. If not, feel free to jump on over to our About Us Page and see a snapshot of our journey to live a simple, frugal and independent life… AND join us on our journey; hopefully you will benefit from some of our successes and be able to avoid some of our harsher lessons.

Now, let me introduce you to our Family…

The Mastermind

Hi! I’m Jodi and my most notable qualities are probably my loyalty and my terrible sense of humor… if you get it, you get it, but if you don’t… this blog probably won’t be nearly as much fun!

Anyway, somewhere along the line, I became the ‘Mastermind’ of this magik (which sounds much nicer than ‘Lunatic Slave-Driver’)!  It’s true, I’m a bit of a momma bear… think big teeth and loud growl, not so cuddly and soft!  I can create a LOT OF WORK, but I also like to do a lot of that work myself. I grew up remodeling homes and even owned a construction business for a while, so I’ve obtained a skill or two along the way.  But I’m not all ‘brawn’; it turns out I have brains too… backed by a masters degree and an insatiable appetite for research… If given the choice, I’d read instead of breathe!  I suppose my work ethic, researcher mind and inability to stop dreaming are the tools that motivated the start of our journey and the tools that keep it going… those and my growl! 

The Better-Half

Thomas… where to even begin!  Always in a ballcap, with a smile on his face and a song in his heart, Thomas is the ‘Better-Half’, but I rarely tell him that. I’d hate for it to inflate his ego. Besides, he’s pretty cocky already 🎵“It ain’t braggin’ Mother Fucker if you back it up”🎵 Kid Rock aside, he really is the constant, the support, the foundation of our household. He is our breadwinner; the reason we’re able to thrive instead of simply surviving while we build. But he’s more than that, for every new project I come up with, he is scoping out and collecting materials from every roadside dump he passes! After ten-plus hours at work, he comes home with the energy and commitment to feed animals, cut down trees and put roofing on whatever structure I just finished building!  And at the end of an exhausting week, he’s the one to light the fire, pull out the karaoke equipment, grab a bottle and invite the neighborhood for a night of comradery!  He really is one-of-a-kind… If I create the ‘Chaos’, he makes the ‘Magik’. 

The Spirit

At this point, most people would probably be tempted to list their children from eldest to youngest, but I just can’t justify that… so I’m gonna mix it up and introduce you to the ‘Spirit’ of our homestead… Nylah!  It’s difficult to say which one of us truly brings the ‘Chaos’, her or me, but I think it’s a team effort!  Nylah is our spirited, all legs, charcoal eyed, freckle faced, never silent, youngest daughter!  With a seven-year age gap between my last two children, Nylah had to make up for the years with words and energy!  This child wakes up with the sun and doesn’t stop talking until the roosters stop crowing and the cicadas stop singing… which is basically never!  But she loves her animals and is oftentimes the most responsible member of our clan.  Nylah was seven years old when we hatched our first chicks on the homestead and she claimed them as her own.  Since then, she’s helped me with nearly every project from building housing for animals and planting gardens to training dogs and turning compost!  She’s my sidekick, and as the only child that I’ve home-schooled since the start of elementary school, she’s the most invested in the daily tasks of making our home a homestead.  Her dream: to breed livestock guardian dogs, be a barrel racer and have a farm of her own… oh, and own a zoo!  We’re getting there baby, we’re getting there!

The Heart

Isabella, or ‘Izzy’ as she likes to be referenced, is our blue eyed, what-color-hair this month, needs a stool, could never find a better friend, eldest daughter. Although she’s definitely the most timid when it comes to the animals, she’s also the most gentle hearted and the most reliable. She has her dads heart and my head which makes for an amazing human with incredible compassion, but a never compromising sense of self-efficacy.  Although she spends the least amount of time doing the ‘homesteading stuff’, she’s my kid with wheels!  She’s always willing to run errands for me, pick up supplies and generally give-a-damn when I just can’t keep up! Did I mention she’s the ‘Heart’?  Above all, Izzy loves the ducks, and even if we didn’t love them ourselves, we’d keep them around just to watch Izzy smile.  Where Nylah takes on most of the care of the chickens and dogs, Izzy takes on the care of the ducks and can be found watching them dive in and out of our little pond as they make an absolutely atrocious mess… but they sure are cute while they do it!


The Artist

Quite frankly, I’d have to spend a fortune on branding if I didn’t have Levi!  I’m full of cool ideas and all, but to execute them on paper… Just take my word for it and be glad I have Levi! Leviathan, as he prefers to be called by his full name, is our goofy laugh, what-color-hair this week, ukulele playing, ever thoughtful, youngest son.  He is seven years older than Nylah and two years younger than Izzy, but he and Izzy are generally inseparable. On our homesteading journey, he really is responsible for all of the artwork that goes into our branding: from color pallet to logo graphics and font choices, he really has a hand in all of it!  In addition, Leviathan has a unique earthiness to his spirit and though he’s generally found inside the house with a sketchbook or ukulele in his hand, he may also be found smelling the oils from the herbs in the garden or holding a cluster of honeybees in his hand and cooing to them.  As it turns out, Leviathan is the only one in the family as excited about honeybees as I am and so, from calming me down when we brought our first honeybees home, to helping me with hive inspections, Leviathan is my partner in all things apiary!


The Missing-Piece

Just before we began our adventure, our eldest son Thomas grew up and moved out.  Although he never got to be a part of growing our home into a homestead, he was always my culinary adventurer.  Now, every time I walk into the kitchen, I imagine him as a kid, eager to learn all things ‘kitchen’ and I picture the silly times we could have had, exploring everything from growing to preserving and preparing meals with the herbs from our garden. I smile to think of how much fun he would have had, and hopefully will have in the future, drying herbs with me and making fresh salsa from the variety of peppers and tomatoes growing in the garden!  But, that will be another chapter, as now is his time to grow in his own direction.  I wish we could have shared these skills with him when he was young.  Take it from me, a lesson learned, involve your kids in this journey when they’re young and let them fall in love with the pieces that catch their unique spirit!

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