Terri J. Huck, Springfield VT

Three years ago, my husband and I traded the sweltering heat and commotion of the Washington, DC suburbs for a five-acre homestead on the outskirts of Springfield, Vermont. Our land is an intriguing balance of cultivated and natural, with a vegetable garden, raspberry patch and fruit trees backed by a steep wooded hill. The top of the hill offers a panoramic view that includes Mount Ascutney. From our driveway, I can look across the stone fence and the neighbor’s cow pasture to the hills of New Hampshire. The gardens bloom from spring through autumn, and a host of birds — from turkeys to hummingbirds — are frequent visitors. Instead of the noise of the suburbs, I hear birdsong, the rustle of the breeze in the trees, and the welcome cacophony of frogs in the pond. There is no place more special to me in Vermont — or the world.