An Opportunity To Share & Giveaway Winner
On our honeymoon we chose to have a set dining time, meaning that each evening we dined with the same people and had the same wait-staff. The others at our table were a couple from Dallas and two couples from New Jersey. They were wonderful people! We quickly discovered we had religion in common (7 of the 8 Lutherans) and I was pleasantly surprised to discover we even shared political views – I think they were surprised too, knowing we were from the Midwest! We learned a lot from them and I hope they came away feeling the same about us.
What I hope more than anything is that they weren’t scared away by me! When I am around people who are unfamiliar with agriculture I always feel this responsibility to inform. While discussing our jobs and backgrounds on the first evening the topic of farming obviously came up. We both explained that we grew up on family farms. When the other couples learned the size of the farms we came from they assumed that it must be a “corporate farm” – which is not true at all! In case you are wondering, neither of us come from huge farms by any means, probably average/medium in each respective area. Again, emphasis on the “family” in family farm.
Our evenings with these three couples was just a reminder of how important it is to share about agriculture. In case you’ve been wondering why I have “The Farm” tab on my blog, this is why!
Both my mom and dad, and Mr. Swan’s mom and dad come from families who have been farming for several generations. While farming can be profitable, it is not unheard of to end up in the red at the end of the year. Money is not a reason people are farmers; people are farmers for the lifestyle and because it’s in their hearts.
One of the couples at our table noted that the machinery we use must cost more than their house. Depending on the value of your home, it’s a possibility… but like you may have taken out a loan to purchase your home, many farmers must take out loans to purchase machinery, meaning the bank owns a portion of those items. Don’t forget machinery loans are in addition to the sizable operating loan it takes most farmers just to keep the farm running.
Just like any other business, farming has its ups and downs, the good years and the bad. It is unfortunate that media surrounding agriculture tends to give off the wrong impression. It seems that the stories radiating across the country are negative towards agriculture, for example, the commercials showing animals being mistreated or recent news questioning the safety of the United States egg supply. The majority of farmers are successful, hard-working family farmers that not only love what they do, but are also ethical in their practice. Hey New York Times, can I get a feature news story on that?
Here is a picture of me with Mr. Swan after harvesting a corn field last fall:
If you have been keeping up you know I have posted several recipes using apples lately, and I recently hosted a giveaway on this Apple Butter Cookies post. The winner already knows who she is. In fact, after I contacted her this morning and she received her gift certificate code she e-mailed me back and told me how excited she was to win AND that she had already used it to place an order. Megan, who also has a baking blog Megan’s Cookin’, was the winner! She put her $20 CSNStores.com Gift Certificate towards a new kitchen tool, this Cuisinart Cookie Press. Good choice Megan – perfect for making cookies this holiday season!
A special thank-you to all who entered. Keep reading – details on how to enter in the next giveaway will be announced very soon!