4H and Farm Lessons

Uncategorized Aug 19, 2019

It's the season in my part of the country, much like other parts, where we are preparing for our county fair. As the years go on we have become professional fair parents of sorts. I have special coolers and boxes tightly packed. I have garment bags that can withstand a sand storm. We carry hair spray that can hold a child's braid or a steer's tail ball, perfectly teased like bangs of a 1980s teen girl headed to prom.

 

My husband is able to manage: a tweenager meltdown, shine the hooves of a steer like a boot polisher in a New York City subway terminal, all while handing out cash to wayward children begging for a carnival ride. 

 

Fair is a moment in our life where time stands still. Fair has looked the same for decades. It could be 1967. The quiet musty barns become festive stages for fancy livestock to lay in fresh pine shavings. City residents walk through and marvel at their size and the children that raise them.

 

Farm and ranch folk meander along pointing...

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If You Just Smile

Uncategorized Aug 12, 2019

I am not a person who follows celebrity gossip. Well, let’s say that I fall somewhere between I’ve never seen the Bachelor or the Real Housewives of Anywhere and sometimes I watch interviews of my favorite celebs on YouTube.

 

I’ve also never understood the devastation that some people feel over the loss of a celebrity. I mean, I get it. It’s sad when anyone passes, but you didn’t know them personally and had probably never even seen them in real life. So, are tears really necessary?

 

Then, in 2014, Robin Williams died. And I was…lost.

 

Thinking about it now, I’m sure it was more about me than him, but he was the first celebrity that had died that I felt a personal connection to. I wanted to be him.

 

By all accounts, he was caring, generous, kind, and, of course, hilarious. When he walked into a room, or onto your screen, you couldn’t help but smile. He had a presence about him that I desperately wanted. Then,...

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An Agritourism Dream Come True

Uncategorized Aug 05, 2019

 

 

Fifteen months ago, my husband and I were soon to become empty nesters with the last of our 5 children preparing to attend the Virginia Military Institute. I had big plans for us to sell our farm and move to a nearby lake - a place where our children and future grandchildren would love to visit.  But God had a different plan. 

 

March 2018, I remember Mike asking me to meet him in the pasture.  As I approached him, I noticed his eyes were filled with unusual excitement and childlike wonderment. 

 

I remember his exact words, “I’ve been thinking and talking to God. I can’t imagine He would want us to leave our farm.  What if we create a place where people can visit and spend time with farm animals. Can you imagine children filling this farm again?”

 

In that moment, the trajectory of our lives changed as he shared the plan God had laid on his heart to open our farm as an agri-tourism educational...

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FarmHer or FarmMom? Can I Be Both?

Uncategorized Jul 29, 2019
 

Let’s talk about motherhood and that crazy transition from FarmHer to FarmMom. The transition into motherhood is nothing short of incredible, but at times overwhelming and uncertain. Finding the new you as a mom. Balancing all the things you did before with the new full time, 24 hours/7 days a week job of being a mom.

 

I have been at this working mom thing for just over 5 years now. Sometimes, I feel like I am kicking butt and taking names and other times, not so much.

 

One of my biggest struggles, something I think a lot of us struggle with, is that transition from being full time at work, whether it's on the farm or off, to figure out what to do after you become a mom. The feeling of not being able to work as much, but still feeling like you are enough.

 

Am I less of a farmer if I am not there every day? Or what if stay home completely? Am I still considered a farmer if I can’t have a full-time role?

 

These are questions and...

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How Are Your Expectations Holding You Back?

Uncategorized Jul 22, 2019

Do you have expectations?  I know I do.  I am pretty certain it is safe to say that most people have them at some point in time for various reasons.  Ever find yourself to be let down and disappointed by the expectations we not only place on ourselves but those we inadvertently place on other people? 

 

Hello, my name is Jessica and I am embarrassed to say I am the expectation queen.  This, my friends, is something I am consistently working on.  We create these unspoken rules and standards we expect people to live up too, and when they don’t, enter disappointment.  But have we ever even shared what these so-called “expectations” are with the other party?  Probably not.  And how about those expectations we place on ourselves?  Are they even realistic? Most likely, that is a big fat NO. 

 

I know for myself, the expectation sometimes extends past what I put on myself but becomes this disillusioned...

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Don't Fall For This Comparison Trap

Uncategorized Jul 15, 2019

Being a farmer’s wife is a difficult job. And sometimes it’s really hard, especially raising kids at the same time #seasonalsinglemom. When you live a life where your livelihood depends on so many different aspects that you absolutely cannot control. It means the days don’t start at 8 and certainly never end at 5.

 

It can be lonely. It can be stressful and exhausting. It can test your patience and make you question yourself daily.

 

My biggest piece of advice as a seasoned farm mom is please don’t fall into the game of comparison. It is hard in a world where women do a lot or the bare minimum, lives are so different all over the world.

 

I know firsthand what it’s like to compare your current situation to someone else’s and how it can affect you mentally and can truly make you feel awful. It steals joy, it creates problems that aren’t really there. It causes you to judge and be jealous. Social media for me can create this...

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Bewildered Mama at Grocery Store

Uncategorized Jun 28, 2019

 

I see you, mama.

You’re on the baby food aisle looking at HUNDREDS of options for formula and baby food. You just recently stopped breastfeeding or pumping and are trying to figure out what to feed your precious little nugget. Thoughts about natural foods, preservatives, GMO-free formula and so much more are rushing through your head.

I see you, mama.

As you study the ingredient labels with excruciating detail looking for anything harmful, you sigh – as if the weight of the world is on your shoulders. In your life, feeding your child IS your world and it’s a heavy burden. The Google machine barrages you with endless data, and guilt, about what the best foods are for babies and toddlers. One or more of these questions is probably running through your mind:

–          Should I have stopped breastfeeding?

–          Is homemade baby food better?

...

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More Than One Kind Of Farm Wife

Uncategorized Jun 21, 2019

This afternoon I brought Keith a sandwich to the field & it got me to thinking about some things I’ve recently read. Words from women in agriculture wanting to make sure others know they are just as capable as any man.

 

I’ve seen a whole new level of “We can do it!” rise among ladies in ag, & I love it, mostly. What I don’t love are statements made that cut others down. I believe strongly in advocating for people & encouraging others, when it’s done in a way that doesn’t aim to push one above the other. It’s like watching a political race…I always think to myself, “just tell me what’s good about you; focus on why I should support you instead of tearing down your opponent.”  God made us each unique, with our own set of strengths, & weaknesses too. There’s no need to step on others as we try to push our way to the top.

“Encourage one another and build each other up.”...

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Falling In Love with Farmlife

Uncategorized Jun 09, 2019

For those of you that don't know me, I'm Geena (@cityraisedfarmsaved) & those of you that do know me would best describe me as the chicken obsessed, cow lover with a slight green thumb...all while probably being over dressed. I started my blog & IG page three years ago to share my love of my new lifestyle living on a farm 2,000 miles away from the California beach I grew up on.

 

Although I didn't grow up on a farm or with an agriculture background, there was always an interest in everything Ag, from crop/hay farming to cattle but I also wanted to live in the city & be a fashion designer. I thought I wanted a fast life.

 

Five years ago I found myself moving to a farm in rural Missouri craving the simple life. I had originally found myself relocating to the Midwest for a corporate job I worked back in CA & quickly realized I had zero interest in living in a big city anymore. Six months later I quit the job & found myself living on horse ranch in MO...

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How the Voices in Your Community Shape Your Life

Uncategorized Jun 09, 2019

We were five hours into the hike up Mt. Elbert, one of Colorado’s famous “fourteeners”, and I was out of breath, out of strength and ready to throw in the towel. (For all my other Midwesty gals, a “Fourteener” is a mountain with a peak greater than 14,000 feet above sea level.) As I rested trail side on the most comforting rock a girl has ever seen, I look to my friend Susan and said, “That’s it. You guys go on. You can get me on the way back down.”

 

 

Now, you don’t need a helmet or ropes to climb Mt. Elbert, but it’s not a casual walk in the Appalachian foothills. I’m certainly no mountain climber, but let’s be real here, you can’t go to Colorado without a mountain adventure in mind.

 

 

Susan was my college roommate and she has now been a resident of Colorado for more than 10 years. She and her husband Charlie and their two young sons are adventurers. They ski, run, climb...

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