Meet Amy Jo from Truelight Farm

I am the mother of 3 spirited kids ages 6, 7 and a newly turned 9. We moved to the lovely Alpine Shire from Cairns exactly 4 years ago. I was born and raised in beautiful Indian Trail, North Carolina in the USA. I spent years in West Australia then met my partner when we were working in and around amazing Arnhemland.

We had our babies in Cairns then headed south to our lovely farm called Truelight Farm. I was desperate to be somewhere that I could grow daffodils again. Nothing makes me happier than bulbs emerging in the Spring- to me, they are the ultimate signs of hope and happiness.

Our main farm industry is growing hazelnuts. We love and celebrate trees and I am delighted each day to walk in the grove and observe the seasonal changes. We are constantly learning and growing and trying to improve our farm. We've been expanding our plantings of hazelnuts and our goal this year is to become Certified Organic. We have harvested by hand each year- our kids are most valuable harvesters- and we would love to mechanise that process before our knees give out and our kids get old enough to walk off the job ! So, there is always a huge list of to-dos, dreams and goals. I grew up on a farm that has been in my family for 7 generations, I desperately wanted to give that experience to my kids- the ups and downs of farm life can teach you so much. At my kids' ages, my father was picking cotton to help support his family so I don't have much tolerance for my kids' complaints!

We love our animals and are working to create a thriving system of animals that fill our hearts will joy and serve purpose to the farm. We breed lovely donkeys to help us with blackberry weed management, raise alpaca, sheep, dairy goats, chickens, ducks and turkeys. We adore our dogs. We've got a couple kelpie x rescues that rule the family as well as our pure kelpie that, 9 weeks ago, had 9 perfect pups. If anyone is looking for a black and tan to love and treat with kindness, contact us! I often tease my kids that it's lucky that I had them before the dogs, otherwise things may be different around here. It's been a real joy watching the kids witness the magic of puppies and they've grown from the experience. After one day of trying to count to 9 to gather all of the puppies, my daughter declared that she was only ever having 2 kids, it's much easier to count to 2.

It's been a challenging few years for everyone. We feel fortunate that our family has had space and plenty of on-site projects to keep us busy. If only I could get home to Indian Trail, North Carolina with my kids to see my dear father- that is my ultimate dream these days. But he is so thankful that the kids are safe and well and happy here, he helps me to remember what is important. He also told me a million times growing up that 'If a hoppy toad had wings, he wouldn't bump his butt ahoppin,'- so stop wishing for what you can't have and get on with it, how it is.

Mothers' Day can be tricky for many of us that no longer can reach out to our mothers in this life. To me, that's where Mother Earth comes in and saves our heart. A daffodil in a vase brings my grandmother into the room, eating a fig in the Autumn sun has my mother standing right next to me. I see the loved ones that went before in my kids, and that keeps me grinning with tears in my eyes through it all.

Happy Mothers Day to the beautiful souls that raised me and to those that still raise me up each and every day.

Find out more about Truelight Farm on instagram @truelightfarm

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