I have spent a lot of time focusing on the interior of our home, which is my main focus because the outside seriously overwhelms me! I am not a gardener, I hate mowing, I don’t really like getting dirty and the sun hurts my eyes! I am a homebody at heart and I would choose inside over outside any day!
But despite my dirt phobia I know that we are very blessed to live here on this gorgeous farm. Thistledo (a play on the words This-will-do) was named by my in-laws and I love the name, it says a lot about them and the home they made here. It is humble and unassuming and doesn’t try to be more than it is…..it just is and in that there is beauty. My husband grew up here and we spent a lot of our “dates” here on the farm. We moved here 4 years ago as a family. We always had plans to move here and build our dream home but our plans were moved forward and we have made a home in what was a one bedroom “shack” built for a farm-hand to use. In reality this “house” is just a home built under a shed at the back of the farm behind two other sheds.
What makes this place beautiful and special is that it is over 90 acres of glorious farmland and Australian Bush. The houses and sheds sit atop a bluff and over look most of the paddocks. Every time people arrive here for the first time their first comment is always “wow, this is beautiful”. The beauty is not found in the buildings or landscape but in the sense of peace and isolation that you feel when coming here.
It seems so cut off from the rest of the world but in reality we are 10mins drive into town. Thistledo Farm is found in South-East Queensland on the Sunshine Coast. The Sunshine Coast is known for its beautiful beaches and is a tourist destination. It is a wonderful place to live and we are blessed to call it home. Our home is a far cry from the beach, we live in what is known as the “Hinterland” and I think it is much more beautiful than the beach. I am a country girl at heart and I would choose a paddock full of cows over a beach any day. So I am right where I need to be.
You travel down a long dirt/bitumen drive to get to the main house where my father-in-law lives, it is a large home and where my husband grew up. Some people I am sure would cringe at the idea of living so close to the in-laws and I confess I felt that way before we moved here, but I am blessed to have the type of in-laws that know just when to be there and when not to, they give us space to be a family, while still supporting us in everything we do. Not long after we moved here my Mother-In-Law passed away from a long battle with cancer and I feel her loss here everyday.
The farm lost a bit of its luster for me when she left, I didn’t realise how much of its feel was caught up in the home and life she had built here. I didn’t realise the incredible void she would leave. But, I know regardless of her loss we are where we need to be, for now anyway, this is home.
When I first met this family the farm was a working one with cows to keep the grass down and rows upon rows of avocado and lemon tree orchards. It was a beautiful place that has lost a bit of its sparkle in the last 10 years. The trees are gone now and so are the cows, the land has been left to lay fallow and grow wild, but still here and there are patches of its former glory. I am not sure what will come of it, whether we will ever see it shine again.
Things are changing here as land is cut off for us and my sister-in-law and the grandchildren…..while it won’t be sold off to strangers it will never be what is was…..that makes me sad…..but at the same time there is promise for a brighter future, one surrounded by extended family.
My husband and Father-In-Law have been slowly stripping the farm of all that made it a farm….its identity….the lemon trees are almost gone and only a few of the avocados trees remain. The paddocks have no fences now as there are no animals to contain. What once was, is gone. The land has lost its purpose and in that I think there is a sadness, I worry it will go the way of so many farms around us….housing developments and rows upon rows of cookie cutter houses….it would be a shame to see this countryside stripped of all it’s glory.
This is a patch of paradise that very few people are lucky to possess and I would hate to see it squandered, sold off to the highest bidder and cut up into tiny pieces, never to be a whole again. I worry that this will be its future.
A road is going in soon where the dirt driveway is, it will be sad to see that go as we had our wedding photos taken here…..walking up the drive away from my husbands life here…..to our new life as husband and wife…..little did we know we would return so soon.
That new road will lead to our land….our small patch of this farm where we can build our forever home. I look forward to that time but I am also sad for what was. I really wish you could have seen it in all it’s glory when the Poinciana Trees were in bloom and the gardens where overflowing with flowers…..when the lemon and avocado orchards were a hive of activity……..it was beautiful then.
But, I see beauty in brokenness…..here and there the bush is coming back to life, reclaiming what was and I think there may be hope for this old girl yet.
I am so excited to FINALLY share some pictures of the slice of Australia we call home, I hope you enjoyed looking at the pictures as much as I did walking around capturing them for you! I love the sense of history the farm has and the generations that have lived here, we are blessed to be a small part of its story.