A lot of people ask me what it’s like to be a farmer’s wife. It is a very different life to what I was used to before.
I can’t speak for all farmer’s wives as I suppose everyone is different but I thought I’d explain what happens in our world.
My husband gets up and goes and opens the gates. I get up with Boo and we watch a bit of TV if we have no plans.
Hubbie cooks his breakfast in his mum’s house-I don’t know why this happened but I am quite glad about it as it means less washing up for me.
He then comes in to see us. Sometimes for half an hour if he’s not busy, sometimes just to brush his teeth.
I work two days a week so for the remaining five, I run any errands, do the shopping or take Boo to her various classes in the morning.
We have to be back between 12 and 1pm as my farmer likes his meals at certain times. When I am at home I cook at least two meals a day and when I’m not at home for meal times, the farmer wants to know why.
If there are any farm workers here, I make lunch for them too.
It is always an event.
Boo is quite used to eating her lunch with a group of men discussing machinery and the like.
Boo has a nap still in the afternoons and I try to catch up on house work or writing.
Unless we go outside, we wouldn’t see hubster again until it goes dark which means in winter, we see him for a lot longer than we do in summer.
Evening meal must be on the table by 6pm or, if he is busy, whenever he comes in.
I do hate the thought of heating things up so when he is busy, like in the summer, that means Boo and I having one meal and then making something again for him when he comes in.
I think I am going to have to master the one-pot or slow cooker again to remedy this as it can be a right pain-especially if he comes in demanding his dinner right in the middle of bedtime.
When it comes to dinner, it always, always has to have meat or fish in it. Beans on toast just won’t cut it for my farmer.
Even on Shrove Tuesday last year when I was making a stack of pancakes and served beans on toast, I got grumbles.
He does work hard though and it is a physical job so I suppose he needs the energy.
I put Boo to bed. Then if it needs it, I do some accounting work for the business which actually is a but funny as I am so bad at maths but, with the aid of a calculator, I seem to be getting by.
I do everything in the house-cook, clean, wash and iron clothes, food shopping, clothes shopping. Everything.
This is just a snap shot of one day and that is the thing that people who aren’t from farming backgrounds don’t understand.
Every day is different. Emergencies can arise-especially as we have livestock.
There is the possibility of people dropping in at any moment for a cup of tea and a chat as we are technically living in the middle of a business.
In the summer my farmer works from sunrise to sunset-or later. You get used to the smell of manure and the constant mopping of the kitchen floor from muddy boots-why did I pick a cream floor on a farm, I will never know.
You regularly have to check your washing machine filter for straw and, during lambing and calving season, you have a special wash just for blood/milk/gunk stained items. You have a lamb’s bottle brush on you kitchen drainer and a torch by your bedside in case the dogs start barking in the night.
We haven’t been on holiday for five years with no glimmer of hope that we will ever go away again and you just have to accept it. If you were bitter about it, it would ruin your relationship. In 2013, as it was an ok summer, it felt like we were on holiday as Boo and I spent so much time outdoors.
In summer, Boo can go a whole day, even more without seeing her daddy as he is out before she gets up and home after she goes to bed.
When we lived in an ordinary house, I felt like a single mother a lot of the time as I did so many things on my own with her and I thought when we moved to the farm we would see more of him.
The reality is, if he’s living here, he finds something to do all the time so I am still a bit like a single mother save for the odd day (twice a year maybe) that we go out for the day.
I am not moaning. I choose this crazy life with him.
He might not be in the house with me but we know he is usually just a shout away over the farm yard and that when Boo is a little older she can go on adventures with her daddy on the farm.
Unless we need anything or have an appointment somewhere, we don’t actually need to go out. There are so many exciting things to do here for Boo, ok and me.
From petting animals, sitting on tractors, jumping in muddy puddles, not to mention the times we help herd the sheep for market or bottle feed lambs in the spring.
I got a swing and a slide for her so we also have a mini park and this year, we are going to try our hand at growing vegetables.
Our life on the farm is not conventional. Do I sometimes wish my farmer helped out more and that we could go on holiday? Yes. But when you see the look on Boo’s face when she pets an animal or runs around with no threat of being run over, it makes it all worth it.