Friday, February 14, 2014

My light bulb moment

It is coming up 2 years since we moved to our 7 acres of paradise, so it seems like a good time to reflect on our journey thus far. 

Reading Linda Cockburn's book Living the Good Life really started me on the journey I am on today. We were living on a quarter acre section in an urban area with dreams of a lifestyle block. The house wouldn't sell, I was dealing with Post Natal Depression and life didn't seem so great. And then the light came on.
Reading Living the Good Life I realised I was putting my life on hold waiting for the dream property and then I would live a more self sufficient life. I had things round the wrong way. So I started living the way I wanted to, even if it was on a smaller scale. I got the vege garden well established, filled the glasshouse, learned how to preserve fruit, made jam, and did lots of research (and testing) of making things from scratch.  We even got some hens!  Somehow they made it all seem more real. 
We did eventually sell our house, and pack up and move to 7 acres 10 minutes drive from the town we had been living in.  We certainly have no regrets about the move, but there are always jobs to be done so it is no walk in the park.  It is however, more that worth the effort when you sit down exhausted at the end of a busy day and know you have done an honest days work.
We have learnt some lessons too in the short two years we have been on "the block".
  • Where there are livestock there are dead stock.
  • Never trust a goat.  They can leap over fences as tall as me and love nothing more than to eat my fruit trees!  I wouldn't be without them though.
  • Hens really do have a pecking order and if the top hen "exits stage left" it really unsettles the rest of the hens for a few days until another hen assumes the throne.
  • When it rains lots over 3 consecutive weeks, water can appear to be coming up from the ground in the strangest places.
  • Having a torch which works is really important because when you have animals to look after, going for midnight walks with your husband can be a regular occurence.
  • A 5 minute job will always take 60 minutes longer than that!
  • Goats can jump really high.  Especially if there is a fence to the orchard in the way.
We have also learned a lot about ourselves too.
  • Chickens REALLY are good for the soul.
  • I missed living in the country.
  • Our daughter can sing incredibly loud.
  • When we need to we can work pretty well as a team.
And finally
  • Baling twine really is the farmers duct tape.
  • I love baling twine and all it's various uses.
  • My husband does not like baling twine.
  • My husband is a perfectionist.  I am a "it'll be ok for now" fixer.  The two do not always work that well together.....



  1. Hi there, this story sounds very similar to our foray into "self-sufficiency"! Minus the goats which we (currently) do not have. And we moved quite a bit further afield (2hrs drive) from our suburban 1/2 acre. Do not regret it for an instant and although there are always jobs to be done and we make a lot of mistakes and get tired of it all on occasion, would not go back to living in the city.

    1. Yes you certainly learn quickly. Even though I grew up on a farm it has been a step learning curve making all the decisions. We're lucky my parents live close and are retired so give us a hand sometimes.