Every Friday on social media, we post a Farm Feature Friday showcasing one of our dedicated North Carolina farmers or agriculture industry workers. Meredith Bernard, also known as This Farm Wife, is one of those industry leaders. The #FarmFeatureFriday campaign will run through December 2021 on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages and from August to December will feature younger farmers in the industry. Be sure to tune in each Friday afternoon on social and help show your support for our local farmers!
Sometimes life has a funny way of directing us to where we need to be and that was certainly the case for Meredith Bernard, also known as This Farm Wife. Although she didn’t grow up on a farm, Meredith grew up around facets of the agriculture industry with both her parents working at N.C. State University, one with Cooperative Extension. “I remember being around agriculture as a kid because I always loved riding horses and my cousin worked a tobacco farm,” she said, “but it wasn’t until a friend and I got involved in ag science at N.C. State that my true passion was born.”
Upon leaving college, Meredith worked for a variety of corporate and retail locations, including a feed store, before finding her way back to her husband’s family farm in 2013. “The demands of corporate life had gotten to be too much and I wanted a life where I could spend more time with my family,” she said, “so I returned to the family farm and in turn found so much more. I truly found myself and my one true passion in this lifestyle.” Today, the farm continues to raise beef cattle and hay.
For Meredith there is no typical day on the farm because things are always changing but she never gets bored. From homeschooling the children and feeding the farm cattle to fixing anything that needs to be repaired and managing her huge online/social media presence, Meredith and her family have learned to find comfort in the chaos. “I have learned that it’s all about finding balance in the imbalance,” she said, “there is a lot to be done on a daily basis but being able to do it together brings a huge sense of pride and accomplishment.”
Although the lack of control can sometimes be frustrating, Meredith says there is no greater joy than being a part of the process and seeing the fruits of their labor. In addition to helping around the farm, Meredith has established an online platform, www.thisfarmwife.com, where she shares the real life story of her farm with readers across the state and beyond. “The real purpose is to let people know our story, to let them see the good and the bad and realize they are not alone,” Meredith said. The idea came to her one day after church and in the blink of an eye grew to the audience that she has today. “I am truly grateful for everyone that has followed along with us on this journey because in the hard times it was them who pushed me to keep going,” she said. You can find stories, blogs, YouTube videos, merchandise and more on Meredith’s website. She even has recipes that were developed by her and her family to help you try something new in the kitchen.
As a young farmer, Meredith wants to remind those looking to pursue a career in agriculture to never give up, believe in yourself and build connections with others in the industry. “Don’t let people tell you that you can’t do it,” she said, “make connections, work some time on a farm, start small and allow yourself to grow from there.”
In the future, Meredith will continue to raise her kids on the farm, instilling in them the same beliefs and passion for agriculture that she has. When they are not on the farm, you can find Meredith and her family either fishing or riding horses.