So how exactly did we find ourselves moving to BC to go farming?
In the spring of 2014 we started entertaining the idea of taking a break from our jobs. We wanted to pursue our shared passion for a slower lifestyle and a close connection to nature.
Despite only being part of the modern working world for a handful of years (4 in Aaron’s case, 2 in Lana’s) we found that something was missing. Sure, our jobs provide us with a healthy income, but the lifestyle we hope to live certainly does not relate to how big our paycheques are.
In the fall of 2014 we started seriously looking for farming apprenticeships. There were no lack of opportunities out there, but one website in particular, Stewards of Irreplaceable Land, helped us a lot. Each apprenticeship had its pros and cons. For example, some farms had private accommodations (awesome) but expected crazy hours (10 hours a day, 6 days a week; no thanks). Others offered profit-sharing (sweet!) but didn’t accept couples or pets (deal breaker). Eventually we contacted our farm of choice, Middle Mountain Mead, and were offered an apprenticeship in December 2014.
The position we accepted is for 7 months, beginning April 1st and ending October 31st. The farm is on Hornby Island, BC, which is located between Vancouver Island and the mainland. We will be helping out with various tasks around the farm, including gardening (seeding, weeding, harvesting, greenhouse work, etc.), animal care (sheep, rabbits, chickens), various farm projects (solar panels, orchard, etc.) and working in the mead tasting room. Mead is a honey wine often flavoured with fruit, herbs and spices, and is the product produced by the farm. The mead is sold at the farm itself and at various liquor stores in BC.
In early 2015 we applied for a leave-of-absence from our jobs. Luckily our bosses were very supportive, and our leave-of-absences were granted for 7 months. March 20th, 2015 was our last day of work and the beginning of our greatest adventure yet.
We can’t wait to share with you all of the details of the next 7 months of our lives, and beyond.
-Lana & Aaron