So naturally I would like to keep these blog posts totally about my experiences over here. But this one has to be an exception. It’s literally been apart of my entire life and this is the first year I’ll have completely been away from it for the whole fall. So what exactly is it?
As many of you already know, and as some of you have been able to gather by the childhood photo above, my family owns a pumpkin farm called Dupler’s Pumpkin Land. While I could describe every last detail that involves everything from how pumpkins grow, to the ins and outs of the operation today, I want to focus on a different aspect of it. Specifically, how this family business helped mold me into the person I am.
So a little background, the family business was started by my parents 22 years ago. The initial start came as an idea to help pay off the 26 acres they had purchased. After planting 1/2 acre of pumpkins, they sat out in lawn chairs and sold every last pumpkin. After doubling the size of the field to 1 acre the following year, and again selling every pumpkin, they realized they might be on to something.
So over the years, the business continued to grow. While this was far from a 2 person operation (family and friends have played and still continue to play a massive role) the work that my parents were putting in was mind-boggling. They both worked full-time, raised my sister and I, and continued to work the pumpkin business year after year. While most people will never understand how much work goes into the process of starting with a seed to putting the pumpkin up for sale, I witnessed it growing up.
And It wasn’t until I got older that I truly began to appreciate two things: the first one being how hard my parents worked simply for the love of fruition, and secondly the impact that this had on myself. Despite everything going on in their lives, my parents never used it as an excuse for anything. And while I think I still have a long way to go in terms of matching their level, I’m always trying to embrace their hard work, no excuse mentality, that was instilled in me growing up. I truly believe that without this experience, I wouldn’t be near the person I am today. And while it is impossible to say for sure, without pumpkins, I may not have ended up in Ireland in the first place.
Here’s a picture from a couple years ago, with my dad, Roger, my mom, Traci, and my sister, Chelsey.
Here’s one more picture that shows how my sister and I have literally grown up in the pumpkin patch.
Again, I had a couple other ideas for this post, and I wanted to keep these blogs primarily about my experiences here in Ireland. However, I truly believe that this has played such a big part in my life development and is a strong reason that I was granted this opportunity to be here. I also don’t want people reading this and think that I’m desperately homesick. Yes I do miss being around it all, but my experience over here so far definitely makes it worthwhile to miss out on the farm for a year.
Tune in next time where I make some hot takes on a food review!