the emerton family divide their time between a well established dairy farm and Barbara jean’s hair salon. we speak to the family about their double life.
Debbie and Craig Emerton.
> Where do you live?
Dairy farmers and professional hairdressers at Barbara Jean’s Salon.
> What are some of the family’s hobbies?
We both love ballroom dancing – together we were actually NSW Champions – and it is a past-time we have recently revisited!
> Why did you choose the dairy industry?
Six generations of dairy farming. It’s in our blood.
> Tell us about your home and farm …
We live in a 100 year old house, originally owned by our grandparents. We have kept and restored many of its beautiful original features. We also have 150 acres of lush land.
> What are some of the struggles you face as dairy farmers and hairdressers?
The dairy farm is threatened by the deregulation of the industry. The weather heavily impacts also. While gaining Debbie’s certificate in hairdressing, there was study to be done, travel to be had, salons to tend to. Not to mention the house duties and kids to raise!
> Why would you not change your current circumstances for anything?
The farm and country life is amazing. But Deb always wanted to fulfill her ambition of becoming a hairdresser, and this is how Barbara Jean’s came about.
Life on the land is wonderful, and the best way to raise our kids.
> Describe your typical day …
Craig starts at 5:30am milking 80 head, feeding calves and preparing the day and night feeds, harvesting or sowing or mulching paddocks.
I am usually up at 6 am putting on the washing, un-stacking the dishwasher, a quick tidy up and leave for work at 8:30am. Hair up, down, curled, cut, foils, washed, coloured, brows to wax, lashes to tint, staff to organise, clients to pamper – then home at 5:30pm!
I then wash all of the salon towels, cook tea and give my family some TLC! Craig wraps up at 7pm and we hit the bed at 8:30pm.
> Tell us something that people would not know about you?
In April 2006, due to the quality and high production of our milk, we were selected from all the National Food suppliers to go to California on a study tour.
What an eye opener, and a real blessing to have a holiday together as a family.
> What is your family’s life motto?
To live life in such a way that we will make a difference in the lives of our family and others. Life offers lots of challenges. We always want to respond in a way that is helpful, caring and positive.
> Thank you Debbie and Craig.