- About Us -
Ever have one of those moments in your life when you suddenly look at the big picture and wonder what it is that you are actually doing with your life? That happened to me, one summer night a few years ago, over a bottle of wine with friends. It had been an exhausting week in our corporate lives, there were a thousand things on our to do list from business deadlines to house improvements, organizing kids camp stuff, back to school shopping, entertaining friends and more, lots more. What struck us was that we were so BUSY but in the grand scheme of things we seemed to be busy doing nothing that really mattered. Not that kids and family and friends and paying the bills don't matter but in the blink of an eye our summer was gone and it seemed to go somewhere that was far from inspiring or memorable or meaningful for us. That night got me thinking, soul searching and dreaming big. What would I do with my life if I had all the bravery and money I needed? Those are the two greatest obstacles that stop most people from following their dreams.
What I realized was that I wanted to create an authentic, more fulfilling life for myself and my family. I envisioned doing more as a family, learning some new skills and not relying on society for well, everything. At that point in my life, I couldn't even keep a houseplant alive, never mind grow a garden and reservations somewhere were my idea of a nice family meal. I had nowhere to go but up. No one ever feels 'ready' to take brave leaps of faith and I certainly did not have a tonne of money but as they say, if you do what you love, the money will follow.
I started with a LOT of research. I let my mind wander and proceeded with the idea that anything is possible. That concept alone was liberating! I decided that for a start, I wanted to lower our monthly expenses so that I didn't have to work so darn hard and we could do more together as a family. We needed to make space, and time, in our lives to learn how to live differently. I spent every evening for many months reading, learning, dreaming, planning and organizing.
Our first big leap into our new life came when we moved to a homestead. It was an older small house on a big piece of land (by city standards) where we could finally dip our toes into this concept. The house was a disaster and needed a lot of love to make it decent but I managed to give it a complete cosmetic face lift in under a month. Once I had that accomplished, we set out to work on our homesteading goals. We designed and built a whole series of raised garden beds where we grew over 100 varieties of food. We built a chicken coop and got laying hens and we started breeding rabbits both for food and pet sales to pay the feed bills. We sold eggs and produce and by the end of that first summer, we were pretty amazed by what some city folk could accomplish with a little ingenuity and a lot of enthusiasm.
Needless to say, it wasn't long before it occurred to me that with more space, we could accomplish more, much more, and let's be honest, it's not a huge leap from fresh eggs to wanting your own dairy cow...well for me anyway. So off I went in search of a small farm to call home next. Well I found it three winters ago and through the course of that first spring, we 'moved' nearly every weekend for 2 straight months. It is truly astounding how much 'stuff' one can accumulate while transitioning from condo dwellers to farmers. I literally rented a Uhaul trailer every weekend and moved load by load - and that was just the garage stuff, workshop, storage, animals and barn stuff. It still took a weekend like normal people to move the house.
So here we are now on this gorgeous farm, not far from the city yet far enough that we can see the stars every night and the crickets are louder than the traffic. We have fireflies in the fields and the kids are free to be kids, like the way we were, all those years ago. I literally have an old school bell that I can ring to call them in for meals. They play...like all kids everywhere, should be able to.
The house is 150 years old and I love every quirk. There is not a straight wall or window in the place but we have lots of space for guests and are surrounded by 100 acres of peace. The driveway is like a 1000 ft landing strip, a reminder as you pull in, that you have left the city and are arriving in a place of beauty and tranquility. We love sitting around the fire in the evenings with friends both old and new, sharing countless funny stories about learning things the hard way and living a life less ordinary.
Here at Alabaster Acres we value goodness. We believe in real food, raised right. We love fresh air, clean water, green fields, colourful produce and heritage breeds of animals. We live as organically as possible. Most of all though, we love sharing our knowledge with others so come and visit us, for a taste of farm life.