Welcome to our journal, our record of this year of transition, as we tie up loose ends in the merkaz (central Israel, which we’ve called home these last twenty years) and prepare for our move next summer to a farming moshav up in the lower Galilee, to our own Field of Dreams in Moshav Sde Ilan.
Since floating the possible move for the past half year to friends and family, we’ve been inundated with dozens of queries and questions. So many are interested in what the north — considered the periphery of Israel — has to offer, and even more are interested in learning more about farming in Israel and in feeling more connected to the land. Now that we’ve definitively settled on moving this upcoming summer (Aug 2018), we wanted to commit our reflections, hopes, plans and prayers to record, both to share with anyone who might find this information useful or entertaining, as well as to chronicle this life-changing journey for future generations of our family.
By way of introduction: we’re Ira and Tamar Weissman, “olim vatikim” (not straight-off-the-boat immigrants to Israel). We met in college in the States back in the ‘90s and came straight to Israel right after graduation in summer ‘98. We’ve been living in various different communities here since (barring a short and early two-year stint in the US), most of them with strong and vibrant anglo populations, and all of them in the merkaz. It’s been a long-standing dream of ours to move to the north of this country. Until fairly recently, we dreamed in the abstract, thinking maybe, just maybe, we’d be lucky enough to retire to the north. But a few years ago, Ira started exploring options more earnestly, hoping that he might stumble on something that would work for us sooner than later. Fast-forward a year to an impeccably-appointed lawyer’s office in Tel Aviv, where we looked at each other wide-eyed after hours of signing endless documents and said “Holy cow, we just took the leap of our lives!”
We’re starting off this new year of 5778 having just bought a farm in the Galilee. Join us as we explain our motivations and dreams for our new life, navigate the complexities of purchasing farmland, wade cautiously into the new experiences of living on a moshav, transition a family of seven kids ages 1-17 and two very large dogs to an entirely different lifestyle than any of us are used to, build efficiently, and learn more about sustainable living and environmentally conscious farming.