7th Wedding Anniversary

Yesterday Pauly and I marked our 7th Wedding Anniversary.  The day before our anniversary we ran the Great Ocean Road Marathon.

Pauly has taught me many things.  I can wind out electric fences. I can drive quad bikes.  I can milk cows.  I can raise calves.  Overalls and gumboots is actually quite a good look on me.

And I have learnt to run.

All thanks to my husband.

We are currently facing THE biggest hurdles on the farm that we’ve ever faced, all thanks to a terrible (and unforeseen) drop in the milk price; dropped on us just last week, quite out of the blue.  Many dairy farmers over Australia are on suicide watch.  Others are counting the cost of the latest hit in the guts and are wondering if they are going to be able to hold on to this farming way of life.  It’s a great big mess.  And way more than I will write about here.  The two major milk companies that most Australian dairy farmers supply (Fonterra and Murray Goulburn) have gone and done some terrible things without any notice or warning.  And there is way more to it.  It’s a great big infected mess.

Couple this with some issues that we’ve been facing since my birthday and the day before my eldest daughter’s wedding back in November – let’s just say life isn’t a bed of roses.  We wonder how long we can hang on doing this farming thing.  I’ve learnt a lot being a farmer’s wife.  Some tragic things I’ve learnt is that not everyone who works alongside farmers know the full meaning of the concepts of honesty and integrity and that of a person’s word being their word without selective memory.  I’ve also learnt that the people who are at the very top of the food-producing chain are the ones who get the smallest cut in the equation.

Bring on running.  There’ve been many times over the last few months where I’ve wanted to axe our marathon plans for 2016. There are just too many unknowns to go throwing in marathon training as well.  And to date we haven’t managed to run one single marathon without some kind of headache brewing – I wonder what it’s like to run a marathon without major worries?

What I have learnt is that running brings precious relief to the stress and worry.  Running puts a wonderful perspective on life and gives Pauly and I something to look forward to that isn’t one iota about farming.  Running brings us together and is a safe topic of conversation when our hearts are heavy and weary. And as for the support of our running friends?  Running angels is a way better description.

Running really is more than a sport or a pastime of an activity.  It is a great big wonderful awesome power that through sweat enables us to see the wood for the trees and exactly what’s important in life.

Sigh.  Thank you running!

Here are the photos.

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And my favourite…awww…6509348_main_573ad37d440c6

Thanks to a funny tummy on race day Pauly ran with me.  Yay funny tummy!  Look at the most wonderful photographic memories that are now ours to treasure.  Pauly never would’ve stayed with me if he thought I was well enough to run on my own.  These are just the nicest way to mark our 7th Wedding Anniversary.

See!  There always is a silver lining!  Now to find one with all this farming rubbish that’s going on.

Please if you know any Australian farmer or person from the bush who is struggling under the pressures of this farming life, refer them to Rural Alive and Well.

Happy running 🙂

PS the photos were taken by some hard working photographers from www.supersportimages.com.  I loved all of our photos, Pauly’s and mine.  We look like we’re having the time of our lives!  I bought the two that I’ve put into this post.

25 thoughts on “7th Wedding Anniversary

  1. Oh, gosh, more tears from me! I hope things pick up and I am glad you’ve got your running during these tough times.

    Happy anniversary, what a wonderful way to celebrate! An amazing achievement for both of you.

    Great pics as well! How precious these memories will be 🙂

  2. What beautiful photos to treasure for ever 😄 And an amazing day.
    It’s all going to be okay on the farm front, I know it is 😄 The most important thing is you have each other ❤️
    Bring on the Gold Coast!!!!!!!!! Xoxoxoxo

  3. I’m so sorry to hear this awful news Annie, it’s a hard time for so many and I feel for you. Hugs xxx
    The photos are gorgeous and you are very fortunate to have each other, so happy anniversary to you both. I agree that running is therapy and I’ve been doing my share lately too, so stay strong and keep running 🙂 xx

    • Thanks Debbie. Why are so many of us coping with such terrible rubbish…. I hope for you and I and all your colleagues and all the dairy farmers that there will be a silver lining x

  4. Lovely pics! Congrats on 7 years! It sounds like you have found your soulmate in pauly😊 I’m sorry to hear that there are problems on the business side of farming. I think that it’s a worldwide problem about people not valuing or caring for food and what it really is, instead it’s just seen as a commodity to make money out of. Hence the rise of modified corn syrup – it’s good business to grow it, sell it, put it in everything but it’s bad health. I feel even more justified now in my decision to eat less processed food and sugar -( I eat loads of full fat organic yoghurt though now!!) not only is it good for my health but I’m fighting back against global money makers! I was going to say that I’m supporting dairy farmers, but I suspect that very little of what I spend on my yoghurt gets back to the farmer. Maybe we need to go back to the days of when the farmer delivered the milk and cut out the middle man – but that’s a lot of work for the farmer and I guess not that efficient?

    • Thank you Julie 🙂 You sum it up so well as always. At the moment I’d be happy to go around and deliver the milk rather than send it off in the big tankers. We’re all just too removed from where our food comes from and that includes me with other produce that I take for granted. As for corn syrup…not enough bad things to say here or about how it has weaved its way into our food and poisoned people. Go organic yogurt, if it’s organic here in Australia there are so many conditions for farming and the price that goes to the farmer is much higher than non-organic. So you would be helping farmers for sure as well as doing something great for yourself. win win!

      • Glad that I might be getting something right! we can’t turn the clock back tho -people don’t shop and eat in the way they used too. I suppose the question is, is there any new technology that can connect the farmer and the consumer so that people understand and appreciate their food more? There are veg box schemes etc. The problem with milk is that it needs to be fresh so it’s harder to store surplus etc. You cant really deliver once a week. 😔

      • I don’t know what the solution is 😦 I ventured into the supermarket today and the cheap milk isn’t being bought at all. There is so much community support out there it’s amazing.

      • People do care, when they know the facts or take the time to think. But most of the time they don’t get any further that ‘which supermarket offers best value for money’. I’m glad that you are getting support, good for Australia!

  5. First congratulations on your run. I think it is wonderful Pauly ran with you but sorry to hear about your tummy. i know that without Dave running with me my marathon likely wouldn’t have happened. Happy 7 years together your two.
    So sorry to hear about the added nastiness in the dairy industry. Good grief as if you needed one more thing. We are sending positive energy across the miles and hoping for resolution. Xoxo

    • Thanks Sue, Thanks for the positive energy. We’ll survive and thrive one way or the other. Feeling for other dairy farmers who are not quite as resilient 😦 I’m actually happy that I wasn’t feeling good now, I simply LOVE the photos, couldn’t have asked for better ones that sum up who Pauly is hehe 🙂

  6. Oh my gosh, you’re the lady with the lovely top !!!! I was trawling through the web reading some blogs of people who had done GOR and happened upon yours and I recognise you. I was with the “cows” that were cheering the runners on. You and your husband came back and told us you were dairy farmers and asked “why cows” !! Oh gosh, I will put you on my feedly now and read often.

    As for the dairy industry, my heart breaks. I just don’t get how they can set their price as to what they will pay the farmers. You guys have the product. Why can’t you set your own price and tell them take it or leave it. They’ll soon have to pay what you want otherwise they don’t have a product. Obviously there’s way more too it. But that’s how my simplistic mind wonders.

    • Oh my gosh back to you Carol 🙂 How lovely that you were there and we said hello! Thanks for the amazing cheering. The whole milk price thing is beyond woeful. It doesn’t make sense to anyone and yet it is happening. I think your sum up is pretty accurate. No other industry would be able to do this but poor old primary producers, the ones who feed us, get hit the guts on a regular basis. Thanks so much for your support both at GOR and your lovely supportive comment xxx

  7. Hi Annie, I was also one of the cheering Cows and we were all commenting on you’re top being one of the best on field! I can’t believe Carol found you! Carol (comments above) shared your blog with us. Well done on the GOR and I am glad that running gives you some respite. This was my first GOR Half and it was a tough one! I hope you pulled up ok!

    Anyway, I hope the voice of the people get through to sort out this debacle for the farmers such as yourselves. It’s a terrible state of affairs and my heart truly breaks. You’re in my thoughts and I hope to see you back at the GOR next year. Look out for some more mad cows along your running exploits! Warmest, Trina

    • Oh Wow! Hello Trina! You guys were amazing, we LOVED seeing you there and here you are making a comment on my blog. Thanks so much for the lovely comment and the huge show of support both for our running and for the whole milk price situation. Thank you so much xxx I feel terribly overwhelmed that you would say such nice things. Thank you Trina.

  8. Hi I was the one dressed up as the cow at the GOR. It was really nice that you guys came back and had a chat to us, wish I could have introduced you to some friends, a dairy farming couple who also ran the marathon. I know they find it a good escape to relieve the stress and fight off depression. My families farm in South West Victoria has been in my family for over 100 years and my 16 yr old son milks there and dreams of being a dairy farmer. He is the six generation to work on that farm. It would be heartbreaking for my cousin to have to sell it now because of this. Hopefully that won’t happen.
    Anyways it was lovely to meet you and I wish you the very best of luck and hope that things will improve in the near future.
    I do like Carol’s idea. If only it could be as simple as that!
    Hope to run into you again sometime. Cheers

    • Wow! Hello Floss! We loved seeing you there. The whole milk price thing is just so devastating. I wish we could’ve met the other couple who runs and dairy farms, I hope they are ok. Six generations. Oh my goodness. I hope your cousin finds a way to pull through. We managed to survive the 40% drop seven years ago (at the time 25% of Tasmanian dairy farms were put on the market, it was terrible). But the hits sustained then were so massive, we are still recovering from them and now this so we just don’t know what will happen. But we are ok. We’re smiling and keeping on going. I work off the farm so we are not 100% dependent on farming thankfully. Thank you so much for the comment, yours, Trina’s and Carol’s comments have totally made my day. Thank you!

  9. Add my congratulations – somewhat belatedly – to the list celebrating your 7th anniversary! … and to have the wonderful photos of the 2 of you running GOR is just icing on the cake 🙂

    A farmer’s life is hard work and I’m so sorry that you and Pauly have to deal with such major stresses outside of your control. My very best wishes that this madness you’re facing is resolved in a fair manner.

    One thing’s for sure though – running is a wonderful way to unwind, unload and unplug from the worries and stresses of everyday life.

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