Picnic Farms

My son, Simon Ross Shannon, is due three weeks today and I am encouraging my partner, his father, to leave his stable, comfortable job as a wholesale fish monger, so Sean and I can both be equally clueless, and possibly broke, and dive in to starting our farm. 

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I consider myself very lucky that I met Sean when I did and that he was just as crazy about me as I was him. We hit the ground running and within two years together we bought a three acre farm house, got pregnant with Simon and will be getting married this coming September. If there was ever a 'right' way to do things you could say we did it a bit backwards; First came house, then came baby and then marriage. Our relationship ended up fast and fruitful if not somewhat 'out of order' because we started our relationship always saying "yes". While saying yes has previously landed us in some trouble like when our week trip to Costa Rica quickly got derailed by the worst case of food poisoning I've seen, ultimately it got us hurdling toward this farm house. 

It is not just our relationship that is a tad backwards, I admit that purchasing a house with, for all intents and purposes, a three-acre lawn and hoping to convert it into workable land to make enough money so that both Sean and I can work from home and grow our family together all with zero agricultural experience unless you count my apartment balcony beans, is a touch backwards. But when I suggested, in passing, to Sean that I'd like to have a farm, he said yes. 

When I was a young girl, the first thing I wanted to be when I grew up was a crowd of people, which explains a lot, but then the very NEXT thing I wanted to be was a farmer. I wanted to have horses, chickens, pigs and basically set up shop in the Riverdale Farm in Toronto. So within a couple months of looking, we found our three bedroom, two bath, three acre farm house in Millgrove Ontario, north of Hamilton.

A couple months ago, we agreed to work towards having Sean and I home to run our farm business and take care of our growing family. With Simon's arrival in mid-march 2017, I would have a small plot of land that was manageable for me to work with a small dependant and we would convert the rest of the three-acres into workable land when Simon was older. I would not have to worry about the farm making money and would just experiment with growing food for our friends and family. This alleviated the pressure to succeed when my inexperience would inevitably raise it's ugly head. That would give us enough of a buffer to bring Sean home next year. That was the plan. That was the safe and comfortable plan we decided on before the long commute to Toronto started to grind Sean down. He wasn't happy. So we said yes. We said yes to each other and decided to just dive in. We'll have nine months of parental leave to build the infrastructure for our farm and we've got nine months to start making money. 

 

JJ DavisComment