What themes and topics feel exciting for you right now?What thoughts and emotions come to…
Last Thursday morning, I got out of bed at around 8 am, which is early for me. I noticed tightness in my stomach. I seemed to be partly happy-nervous and partly worried about the unknown.
I drank my coffee and loaded up my old car. Clearing the snow from my car took me quite some time. In the car, a radio announcer said the weather was extremely bad for driving. I agreed.
Large flakes of wet snow fell from the sky. The resulting mush on the roadway was like porridge, as we say in Finland. The visibility was bad. Aside from the falling snow, I could only see a few cars ahead of me.
I booked an extra thirty minutes for the 260 kilometer drive from my home in Vantaa (near Helsinki) to Parkano.
In Parkano, I pulled up to a pretty and old red farmhouse beside a lake.
My new place.
(Wow. I noticed how excited I just got while writing that!)
Pete’s and my new retreat place. And, eventually, our new home. ?
That night, for the first time, I went to bed in our new place.
I didn’t sleep well, though. My system was quite activated as many thoughts ran through my head.
In the morning, I got up and looked out at the frozen lake and the snow-covered trees. In the garden, tits and other small birds fluttered around a birdfeeder.
At noon, I was in the notary’s office to sign the papers.
I made myself nervous doing the official business. After shuffling around some funds, would I have enough money to transfer to the seller’s account? Was all the paperwork in order? Had I overlooked something?
Last spring, I had a vision of me and Pete owning our own retreat center, a place where we could host groups as well as live year-round and have friends stay with us for longer periods.
I had been growing tired of the amount of travelling I had been doing and I’d enjoyed the thought of people coming in all seasons to our place. The summer cabins where we’ve been hosting retreats for the past six years are beautiful yet not entirely handy for hosting groups. Plus, they’re only usable in the summer.
Pete got excited about this idea, too.
Us settling together in one place where we could truly feel at home.
Plus, like me, Pete wants to be in the nature.
So, last summer, we visited a number of potential places across the countryside of southern Finland – old school buildings, functioning retreat centers, large houses.
Among them was this lovely place called Syvilla. We loved it and, at the same time, we feared that maybe it was too similar to our cabins, just a lot bigger and more modern with running water(!), a shower, indoor toilets(!), new saunas, etc.
During Christmas break, we visited Syvilla again. Now the vision became clear – this was the place for us.
And then the many questions for discussion: Could we afford it? Could we negotiate to a more favorable price? How would we move forward while our teenage sons still live at home and thus we can’t yet be there full time?
Well, sometimes things just work out the way they are meant to. We came up with a great solution: We would buy out one of Syvilla’s two owners while the other – Hannu – would stay on as a co-owner for a period. This way, we could afford to pay the first half (with little help from my mother) and still have a couple years transition period before we take over the place completely.
I love this solution! We can take our time to get to know the place and learn all the technical things, like how to run a smoke sauna (which I’ve never done before). At the same time, we can keep our commitments with our children and the workshops schedule already set up for this year.
So, in the notary’s office, I signed the papers, the money was transferred and I received the keys.
I then became co-owner of a retreat place. Co-owner of a renovated wooden farmhouse from 1907 as well as several other buildings for lodging, two saunas, an outdoor wood-burning hot tub and Jacuzzi, rowboats, a little island with a fire pit, tons of old furniture and equipment and 1.6 hectares of land. Check it out here.
I noticed my body relax.
I returned to the red farmhouse and now felt at home. I spent the next few days getting to know the place, clearing out the kitchen and chatting with Hannu, who had bought the old abandoned farmstead about 17 years ago and has been lovingly renovating it and creating a space for groups ever since.
I am happy – and a little nervous – to share this news with you!
You are very welcome to come and join a retreat with us in Syvilla. The first one will be in early June. Or you can rent the place for your own lakeside holiday.
Syvilla, here we come!
Tuulia (& Pete)
P.S. Do you want to feel those exciting sensations of telling the truth, showing yourself, witnessing others and being present in the here and now?
You are warmly welcome to join us at an upcoming workshop or retreat!