Tuesday was such a wonderful day for everyone at Bowman Farms. Harvest has finally ended which is one of the most exciting things a farmer experiences every year. Harvest is the only income that a farmer receives throughout the entire year. In my household my dad usually gets from Mid December until about March off. Let me clarify off means that he isn’t putting in 17 hours days 7 days a week in the field. He simply is working in the shop, caring for equipment, or hauling grain. It seems that when it comes to farming something can always be done. Regardless what time of year it is the work never seems to stop coming. This also is exciting because I finally get my fiancé back. He has been living with my family the last few months farming with my father. He mostly enjoys driving the Semi hauling grain to wherever it needs to go for the day. Sean is just getting an idea of the family business so he knows what he is getting into. Plus what is better than having his future father in law chewing him out on a daily basis ;). I went home to visit for the weekend, and our Saturday night date consisted of us riding in the semi together until after midnight. He never had time to eat so I ran into town bringing him a greasy dinner.
None of the men seem to stop working for about anything. When I am home I try to bring the guys lunch every day. They never stop to go into town, and eat. They would rather work around the clock to get the crops out of the field. This year is rained a numerous amount of times. This of course meant no one could get in the field to work. The closer we were to December the more stressed out my father seemed to get. We want all of our crops out before the snow it always is a race against the clock. We ended up having a much better crop than expected. This summer was extremely dry, and we feared the worst for the crops. My fiancé should be coming back to Missouri this week, and life is good. I can only thank the lord for watching over my family another years.
This week I don’t have any big Ag issue topics to discuss. Of course I do have plenty of topics to talk about relating to agriculture. Out of the 18 credit hours I am taking in school 15 of them are Agriculture related. Animal science is one of my favorite classes even though it also is one of my most difficult. I really like it because we actually get to do hands on labs. It is literally the only time I leave a classroom while still getting credit for it. I want to talk about the lab I had a few weeks ago. We are covering the reproductive system of livestock. I am of course going into a row crop business, but it is good to understand all aspects of agriculture. I went to the Pinegar Arena with the mind set that we would be learning about reproduction by watching diagrams. I did not however prepare for the fact we would actually be watching the breeding process up close.
I must say a few people in my class looked extremely traumatized by the end. Our focus has been artificial insemination because it allows the spread of diversified genes across the world. Our teacher had artificial horse vaginas out which he sat right in front of me. I tried to lean back my germ phobia kicked in, and I did not want them to touch me at all. The stallion was extremely high strung which didn’t surprise me at all. I just couldn’t believe after all the years I have been around, and worked with horses I had no clue how artificial insemination worked. They simply had the horse mount a dummy to prevent possible injury to another mare. It also allows them to impregnate multiple mares instead of just one. Then we actually got to see a mare receive an ultra sound. You could see when she was ovulating so they could properly get her pregnant. In order to do that you must shove your hand should deep in the rectum to get a clear picture. The image of rubbing it against their bellies faded from my imagination quickly. I learned so much I literally can’t begin to describe it all. The point I’m trying to get across is that the Ag industry is not an easy one. Breeding which seems simple is so complicated, and takes a lot of effort. It also is not very pretty at all, and can get very messy. I now am glad that I am sticking with row crops I don’t have the stomach for anything else. Keep in mind that no matter what the job respect people for what they do. I am simply feeling blessed to learn so much about the entire industry.
Also on a side note totally not Ag related, I GOT ENGAGED!
I am so ready for FALL BREAK! It officially starts next Wednesday, and I am so excited. I want to go to Iowa and see all my loved ones already. My little brother turns 12 on Saturday, I hate that I have to miss it. My wonderful boyfriend is living in Iowa with my family learning to farm. It is a wonderful opportunity, but now I’m one lonely lady. I wasn’t thinking about the fact that I was going to lose my best friend ALL of harvest. That may be why I am very excited to go home. I’ve had so much more time since he left. Today I have a meeting for the Big Sister Program here in Springfield. I am hoping to find a child to mentor, and help change a life. Volunteering is a great way for me to stay busy, and feel really good about myself.
I also am managing to get plenty of homework done. I usually always do it, but I am not procrastinating nearly as much as I was. Netflix still may end up being my demise. Once I get started on a series I can’t stop watching it. I am having a massive cookout, and swimming party tomorrow night. I figure I can stay busy if I invite around 30 people over. That should most definitely be an ordeal. I can’t figure out why Springfield is still so hot. I still can’t go a day without sweating where is my chilly weather? My boyfriend called and said it had rained so they can’t get in the field, because the moisture levels are just to high. Anyway off to work on homework I go. Can’t wait until I can blog about my Iowa trip. I included a little video of what Harvest looks like in case people don’t fully understand.
I’ve officially been living in Springfield for about a month now. I’m already having slight withdrawals from the farms back home. At least in the city of Council Bluffs I was able to drive to the country and escape it all. I now live in my own little one bedroom apartment directly in the middle of the city. It is a nice little home, but I am itching to find a horse to ride. My parents were supposed to come down and visit this weekend my 20th birthday is on Monday. Looks like that isn’t going to happen, harvest is coming early this year. Southwest Missouri seemed to get plenty of rain this summer, but Iowa is burning up! We only have a few hundred acres that are being irrigated. Most of the corn will be ready by this week to be harvested. I fortunately have wonderful friends and a boyfriend who will celebrate with me instead. My birthday has been close to harvest every year, I understand that the job comes first.
I’m feeling slightly depressed that I will miss it another year because of school. Not many people understand what harvest is like, but it is my favorite time of year. The air starts to cool down just to the perfect temperature it feels crisp in the morning. I can comfortably put on boots and flannels without being sweaty and miserable. Leaves change to brilliant radiant colors before they fall filling up yards. My favorite is driving the diesel truck through the hills looking at the corn ready to be picked. It is golden yellow, and to me that is what money looks like. It makes me laugh when people say “money doesn’t grow on trees.” In my family money grows on corn, because that is purely how we make our entire income. Red tractors and combines work around the clock to pick everything before it gets too cold. I love to ride around in the combine with my father, we never say much to each other though. Most farm men don’t, he simply loves to know I am next to him. That is all he needs to make his day better, and the same goes for me. I don’t know what it is, but there is something soothing and wonderful about harvest time. Most people would think it was boring sitting in a tractor for 15 hours a day, They simply don’t understand what its like to farm, but I would love to give insight of just what it means to me.
It all began in a tiny farm town in Hamburg, Iowa population 900. My great grandfather bought acres upon acres of farmland knowing one day it would pass down to his future generations of grandchildren. So here I am, going to school at Missouri State University with the dreams of farming for the rest of my life. I was raised in the Country life I was on a horse before I was in preschool, and had more animals than the entire town. I loved my tiny town, everyone knew who you were. It was safe, and I didn’t want to leave. In fifth grade my mother and sister decided it was best to move an hour away to the city of Council Bluffs, Iowa. I screamed and cried the entire time we were moving, my father decided to commute to the farms every day from the big city. I now consider myself to be a city slicking farmer because of my upbringing. My roots are strong for the country life I fish, love my guns, and could ride a horse everyday. But, I learned quick in the city if you want any friends you better learn to dress and go shopping. I now have a wardrobe that is completely full of dresses, heels, and clothes. Right below is a 12 gauge, six pairs of cowboy boots, and belts so binged out they could blind you. It isn’t uncommon for me to ride horses all morning in a dirty outfit then drive back up to the city and go out to dance clubs with a dress and heels. I’ve always just thought that I was fortunate to grow up with the best of both worlds. My parents farm close to 3,700 acres of pure row crop. Corn and soybeans are the only thing you will find out in the field. We also have many thoroughbreds my dad loves the horse racing business. I want to manage the farms until he retires, then hopefully take over and run the business. I live quite an interesting life, but I love every single minute of it.