A tribute to my childhood on National Ag Day

We were spoiled and rich – not with gadgets, toys, or cars but with the infinite ability to use our creative minds outside on the farm.

I grew up on what I considered to be an old-fashioned farm. We didn’t have the latest and greatest technology, or what the universities consider the best way to do things. We were spoiled and rich – not with gadgets, toys, or cars but with the infinite ability to use our creative minds outside on the farm: raising and caring for our 4-H and FFA project animals, building barns, riding horses, learning about breeding for the highest quality genetics, and so, so, so much more.

Which means my brothers and I truly grew up a little more old-fashioned than today’s society. (Thanks, Mom and Dad.) As a family we worked hard together, played together, laughed together, cried together, fought together, got hurt together, and had a lot of fun together. At one point on the farm, we had every farm animal you could possibly think of. And we loved it.

We learned life and death at a VERY early age. I remember holding a piglet in my hands as it took its last breath. It was similar to the feeling of holding my grandpa’s hands as he took his nearly four years ago... heart-shattering to a 10-year-old, more so than to a 22-year-old. The circle of life is how dad would explain it, making my adult, earthly journey here a little easier knowing we’ll see our loved ones again. The farm truly teaches you so much more than crops, livestock, and work ethic.

I wouldn’t trade that childhood for the world. Don’t get me wrong, there were really hard days, but I fully believe it’s shaped my brothers and me into the people we are today. So, today I celebrate National Ag Day remembering my roots, my drive, my grandpa who started it all, and my sincere love of Hillcrest Farms.

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