Grow your own, homesteading, survive on your own means, teach your children where their food comes from.
All of the above were prominent in my mind when we moved back to Ireland from Australia.
All of our four children were born in Ireland. Three in Waterford Hospital, one in Clonmel. I always wanted my children to get to know my own family so we spent seven years in the Hunter Valley of Australia.
Experience life in Australia growing up. The education system, the lifestyle, the outback, the beaches.
The crazily scary everyday animals, reptiles and arachnids that pose a threat to your life on a daily basis when in the Australian countryside (you’ll notice we all survived…).
When my husband’s father died and we returned to Ireland for his funeral in 2016, we both felt the draw back to Ireland.
The possibility of moving back to the farm we had taken out a massive mortgage in 2004 to purchase, sealed the deal for me.
Taking a tour of our quaint cosy cottage by ourselves at the beginning of an Irish Spring was slightly different to the reality of moving in to a house with four children in a stiff Tipperary icy wind at the end of December 2016.
But so began our journey in Ireland and life as wannabe farmers.
From the outside, farming looks like the ultimate lifestyle.
Clean, fresh air. Honest clean living. Rolling grassy fields for gambolling children. Sitting down to a hearty meal brimming with meat and vegetables from your plot. Tending to animals that multiply with ease and produce fluffy, bouncy, big eyed babies.
Reality definitely has elements of the above.
It also involves long days sometimes where day/night/day merges into one.
Crushing weather extremes.
Too much heat. Too much rain. Too much wind. Not enough rain. Too cold. Snap frosts. Ice.
Machinery packing it in when you absolutely positively need it to work.
Animals taking advantage of an opening and exiting at dangerous speed down local roads.
Too much of your product. Not enough of your product.
Despite the heartbreaks that come with farming, there is nothing like it.
Waking up to a day of harmonising with nature. Watching the sunrise and feeling the tranquility only early risers can appreciate. Being the master of your own destiny. Creating a livelihood you just know you will be proud of in old age.
It’s something we appreciate with every day we are in farming.
Teaching your children perhaps one of life’s most valuable lessons - what you put in your body matters. Where your nutrition comes from and the processes it goes through is inherently linked to health, both mentally and physically.
Animals make the ultimate sacrifice for us as meat eaters to survive and thrive. For us to give them a life that respects their intrinsic instincts and allows them a stress free life until their one bad day, is sacred and something we don't undertake lightly.
We’re looking forward to continuing our business.
Maybe our children will join us one day. Maybe they won’t.
There isn’t an expectation that they will.
We are actively looking for a farm with more acres and a house to fit our growing tribe and their friends and partners.
And we can’t wait to see what the future of farming holds for us.