12 May 2017

Lifestyle lessons

From Country Life, 9:23 pm on 12 May 2017
Lifestyleblock.co.nz Kate Brennan

Lifestyleblock.co.nz Kate Brennan Photo: RNZ/Susan Murray

The Lifestyleblock.co.nz website was born in April 2000 when Kate Brennan, who was living on a lifestyle block in Waikato, realised she didn't know anything about farming.

It wasn't easy to find information aimed at novice landholders.

Kate, a keen IT person, and a friend Kay Swann, enticed animal scientist and rural communicator Dr Clive Dalton on board to help provide information.

Now, 17 years later, the website has over 4000 hits a day, and the initial 30 articles have grown to over 1300.

Kate says there are also half a million forum posts covering any topic one can think of.

The website has standard video presentations from experts, diagrams and photographs and Kate's adding new features all the time: webinars where lifestylers can question experts on specific topics, custom-written software for keeping animal records, and a calendar for home gardeners.

It's a seven day a week commitment running the website. "I thought it would be easier," quips Kate, and sometimes when she's fed up, thinks she doesn't want to do it anymore.

But then she thinks about her ideal job; work from home, work with lifestylers who are a great bunch of people, work on the internet.

"Then I realise I have my perfect block. I have my perfect job."


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