I get the question a lot, “So when are you going back to work?” In many capacities I never really left. I did take 2 weeks at home, no farm time except via cell phone of course. But after 2 weeks my little man and I have been farming away. I laugh as I realize that after only 11 weeks of being alive Hoot has spent more time on a farm and in a field than majority of people will in their entire lives!
What a farmer will tell you: We go walk the field, we feel under the windrow to see how dry it is, we look at the forecast for the day, we check the barometer…
What really happens: We look out across the prairie and if our neighbor is going, we go!
Traditions run deep in my world. Traditions as big as the country’s 4th of July birthday, or ones not as huge to everyone like the 4th of July Rodeo in St. Paul, seem to go hand in hand for me. The celebration every year of those who have forged on before us to make this country great, to celebrate all the is patriotic, good and salt of the earth in this country, the rodeo for me is that celebration. The rodeo has been a part of my family for 3 generations, and as Matt and I sat with Hoot overlooking an arena that my grandpa Carl worked the dirt for so many years, we added the 4th to that number.
The 4th of July to me isn’t just a day, it’s a lifestyle of a small town. It means volunteering and working together to welcome 50,000 people into our small farming town that quietly sits at just 322 people the rest of the year. The Fourth represents tradition to me, traditions as small as putting my son to sleep in a bassinet that I was put to sleep in as a baby. And traditions as important as the start of a harvest with a new face in the field, a face that will someday continue on with our way of life here.
I am reminded that it’s all about something bigger than us, larger than life that gives us the joy of watching the sun go down on land that we have made our own. Land that produces for us because we take care of it.
Salt of the earth traditions, that start from the roots up in this good dirt that we sink our hands into every year to produce a crop for ourselves, for our families, for our country. Blessed is how I feel about all of this, blessed to be a part of such a wonderful small town, blessed to have my family by my side, and blessed to live in a country where I can enjoy each and every one of those freedoms!
Happy 4th of July everyone!