Our nation will celebrate its independence next Tuesday, July 4. The weekend we’re about to kick off will be filled with parades, cook-outs, concerts, family get-togethers, fireworks and of course a lot of red, white and blue.
The three colors of independence are all over the farm if you take minute to recognize them!
Today in this “Photo Friday” we’re doing just that.
If you’re like us, you’ll agree that it’s important to keep in mind our history as we move and progress forward. Enjoy this Independence Day video from the History Channel:
“Well, the kids are ready to go back to school,” a coworker said last Monday.
“Ready to go back to school?,” I questioned in surprise. “Didn’t summer break start at Memorial Day?” I asked, making sure I understood him.
“Yes. But since break started they’ve been at the barn by 6:30 every morning, and now with no homework we’re working outside until at least 10:00 every night. I leave a list every day before I come to the office. Life was easier when they got to go to school from 8:00 – 3:00,” he explained.
I couldn’t help but laugh. I’ve been in those shoes, or boots, before.
Summer “break” isn’t nearly as relaxing for farm kids as it might be for those without livestock to feed, barns to clean out or hay to bale.
What Pool Membership?
Farm kids typically don’t have a pool membership, but rather a creek, pond or river to cool off in when the day is long and hot. Granted, they usually have to wade through thistles, rocks and maybe even nettles to get to the place where the cool water flows, but that’s still better than packing a pool bag and warm Capri Suns to suck on chlorine water for an afternoon.
Also, farm kids don’t understand all the recent hype about stock tank pools. They’ve been cooling off in stock tanks for as long as they can remember! The water was never that clear, though…
What Is Sleeping In?
This concept isn’t new, but it’s somewhat foreign to farm kids. When farm kids hear others talk about sleeping until 10:00 – or even noon – they think to themselves, “My day is half over by then!” or, “Why in the world would you start your day in the hottest hour?”
Farm kids would probably love the chance to sleep in just once, but they’re afraid they’d miss the best sunrise and they also prefer to have certain jobs done before it gets too hot.
Homework Takes on Entirely New Meaning
Even though school is out, farm kids still have homework. It comes in the form of lists. Daily or weekly, farm kids are given lists from their parents and/or grandparents of deliverables they must accomplish. This isn’t just “home” work – this is also barn work, yard work, car work, field work and farm work. This makes a book report sound like, well, a day at the pool.
Two-a-Days? More Like Twelve-a-Days
Farm kids might participate in fall sports, which kick of two-a-day practices during summer break. But farm kids don’t get much of a rest in between these two-a-days, because when they’re not at practice they can be found baling hay, cleaning out the barn, carrying buckets, building fence, cleaning out and bedding stalls, and more. So they might participate in two-a-day practices, but their hardest workout actually begins when they leave the gym.
Farm kids understand early in life the value of hard work because once their two-and-a-half month shift of hard labor is finally over, it’s time to go back to school.
Happy summer “break” to all the farm kids out there.
The open houses are winding down, senior awards programs are over and the lockers have been officially emptied out.
Another school year is over.
This spring we awarded thirteen outstanding high school seniors with a $1,000 scholarship to aid in their college expenses. These very deserving students are pursuing post-high school agricultural degrees. They are, in fact, the future of agriculture. And a bright future, it is: Agricultural engineers, economists and communicators, veterinarians, diesel technicians, plant geneticists and more….the list of dream jobs coming out of this bunch is very promising. We also recognize employees’ children who graduated this spring and are pursuing post-high school education. From Indianapolis east to Dayton and Ft. Wayne south to Cincinnati, students from all over Harvest Land’s trade market are chosen annually.
Congratulations to our 2017 recipients:
You have a lot of change ahead of you! New classes, courses, instructors, living spaces, friends, supper spots, responsibilities and choices. If we could offer you just one piece of advice, it would be this:
You are about to enter a new world that is filled with daily choices that will set you on the path towards a future with promise. We hope that each day, while you recognize opportunities to blaze your own trail, you’ll be true to yourself.
Have confidence in yourself and who you are. Stand up for what you believe in. Don’t forget where you came from or how you were raised. Choose your words words wisely. Spend your time with intent. Do the things that matter to you. Surround yourself with people that strengthen you. Trust your gut. Be true to yourself.
We wish every graduate of the class of 2017
the absolute best as they leave high school and enter
One of our favorite days of the year is approaching!
Fueling Freedom will take place this year on Friday, June 23 from noon to 5 p.m. There are 38 CountryMark fueling stations participating in this year’s fundraising activity.
Harvest Land’s participating locations are Greenfield, Elwood, Fountaintown and Greenville, Ohio.
For every gallon of fuel pumped during the event, CountryMark and Harvest Land will donate 50 cents to the local National Guard Family Readiness Group. More than 20 National Guard Family Readiness Groups will benefit from Fueling Freedom in 2017!
100% of the proceeds from Fueling Freedom will go to support local National Guard Family Readiness Groups. Family Readiness Groups fund activities for troops and their families. Many of the groups use their funds to host summer picnics, hold Christmas dinners, send packages to deployed soldiers, and offer after-school programs for children of American soldiers.
Our National Guard troops defend our country and our citizens every day. Through Fueling Freedom, we want them to know how much we appreciate what they do for us.
This is the 9th year the CountryMark system has hosted Fueling Freedom events.
In 2016, CountryMark’s Fueling Freedom program raised more than $64,000 for local National Guard Family Readiness Groups, a record-breaking year.
We encourage everyone to come out for Fueling Freedom, purchase CountryMark TOP TIER gasoline and premium diesel fuel, and register to win a $150 fuel card.
One fuel card will be given away at each CountryMark fueling station participating in Fueling Freedom.
Show your patriotism and plan on fueling up at one of our CountryMark stations – Greenfield, Elwood, Fountaintown or Greenville, Ohio – on Friday, June 23 from noon to 5 p.m.!