Some may say that the agricultural community is the foundation of our country. The unseen heroes that work from sun up to sun down providing for their families and the rest of the world. They are the ones with the true grit and determination when everything is against them. From fires and drought to disease and unpredictable financial markets, they never give up. Farmers have a deep founded love for the land that flows into an unwavering love for our country.
If you were to ask most people in agriculture, I bet almost all of them would tell you that they got their start in 4-H.
For our family, 4-H is where it all started. We live in a rural community so it only made sense that our kids would be a part of the program. What we didn't know is how much it would teach us. We had no idea what we were doing and we had a club and club leaders that held our hands through that first year and taught us what we didn't even know we didn't know.
Farming is not an easy life. You spend most of your days at the mercy of the weather and have animals that can get sick at any moment. Our jobs are to be problem solvers and if you haven’t learned to be flexible, you are going to have an even rougher time.
It’s no secret that last year was a pretty rough year here on the farm. Just about everything that could break did (see here and here). We were pretty fortunate on the animal front and didn’t have an excessive amount of vet bills, but we always have enough to keep the checkbook on edge.
When we first got into Miniature Herefords, one of the goals was to build our herd to the point that we could sell a few animals each year and pay for our kid’s Christian school education. Every year about this time we file our taxes and ask ourselves why in the world we do this. We would be farther ahead to just pay the tuition and forget the farm.
Honesty can be defined as the quality of being truthful.
It may be a given that we should always be honest and truthful, but unfortunately, that doesn’t always happen. Honesty is so important to God that He made it one of the 10 commandments.
We have always told our kids that it is better to be honest and risk getting in trouble than to lie and be sure they are going to get in trouble.
It is exciting to sell cows.
Sometimes it takes years to get that sale. Whether it is because it has taken years to build your herd to the point where you have enough to sell, or if it is waiting on that cow to have her heifer.
The cattle industry isn't something that creates overnight success. It is a long, hard process. So, when you do finally get that sale, it is really exciting. Plus, your bank account is usually looking pretty grim by this point.
However, just because you have a check in hand and the cow has been loaded on the trailer doesn't mean your work is done.
A thank you note is an expression of gratitude. A way to show someone how much they and their actions mean to you.
In the day of digital communication, it seems the art of pen and paper is becoming just a memory.
There is certainly a place for digital communication. Waiting in the car pool line, for the click list grocery order to be loaded in the car, or going through the car wash are all great times to pick up the phone and shoot off a quick text or e-mail of thanks. But, taking five or ten minutes at home, with personalized stationery and favorite pen, takes the note to a whole new level.
Summer is under way and there is a whole new set of activities awaiting us. There are summer sports, 4-H meetings, summer camp, jackpot shows, Bible school, holiday parades and activities, county fairs, etc.
Most of these activities would not be possible if it wasn't for the unsung hero...
The all-important volunteer.
The person who gives up their time, their vacation days, and many times, money from their own pocket, just so we can show up and have fun.
All that you do
This quote is hanging on our wall and it is one I am always reminding the boys of.
We all often get run down and tired and just want to get it over with, but kids tend to wear down faster and have more difficulty seeing the finish line.
The coveted moment in the show ring is when the judge turns towards you, tips his hat and shakes your hand. The moment that crowns a champion.
A simple gesture, a moment in time…a world of unspoken words.
A handshake is a greeting, a farewell, an expression of congratulations, a condolence, the beginning of negotiations, the sealing of a deal, a first and a final impression.
Yet, so many people miss the gravity and importance of this unspoken moment. A good handshake speaks volumes about a person, and a not-so-good handshake can end a moment before it even begins.
Hello! I am Heather... the city girl turned mom to manure loving country boys. My husband and I both grew up in the city, but spent weekends visiting grandparents in the country. We are first generation farmers who learn best by almost always doing things the hard way. I hope you enjoy following along with our adventures down on the farm.