We start every day with a morning meeting at 7:00 a.m. This meeting allows us all to exchange ideas and to set the plan for the day. Today I started the meeting with the question "When is harvest done?" One response was, "as soon as the crop is off the field." While that is very close, the correct answer came shortly after: "When the last kernel of corn is out of the grain dryer." Spring wheat harvest will begin next week for us and will go until late October when corn harvest is complete.
Harvest is one of the most important times of the year for us. It also can be risky. That's why every year we have a "Harvest Safety" meeting before the combines start rolling in the fields. This morning, Elizabeth shared information on safety hazards relating to trucks, grain dust, sitting in combine cabs, healthy eating, and getting enough rest to help ensure a safe harvest season. It was great to have involvement from everybody. We've all done this before, but it was months ago - so a brief refresher is a good thing. On our farm, the key is to "Start Slow."
We had a good one hour discussion about best operating procedures for all of our equipment during harvest, emphasizing that our most important tool during harvest is communication. We were very thankful to also have Kyle from Uglem-Ness, our Case IH dealer, on hand to discuss electronic items on the combines. You would all be amazed at how much of harvest operation relies on electronic controls.
And if you look at the above picture closely, you can see who's most interested in what Kyle is trying to show us. I'll give you a better view:
We are very thankful for the help we get from Kyle, and from all the other mechanics at our dealerships that help us keep our machines running, especially when things unexpectedly break down. Farmers work long hours and so do these people.
And so as we get ready to harvest the crops that we planted, cared for, and prayed for, we wish all other farmers a safe and successful time of year. And if anybody is in the Aneta area and wants a combine ride, just shoot me an email or give me a call. Everybody should take time to see how it all happens. I can assure you that this group is ready to go....until the last kernel of corn is out of the dryer.
I haven't posted on this blog since January. I apologize for my delay, but I'm back. As many of you know, I was diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor in mid-February. To spare my "45 minute story" as Elizabeth calls it, I had successful surgery, six weeks of successful radiation, and am currently in the process of chemotherapy. I feel great, my family is doing great, and we feel extremely blessed. We are thankful for all of the prayers and concerns that we've received from our family and friends. We praise the Lord for his graciousness.
We've had great support on our farm and from neighbors also. Tim, Rodney, Elizabeth, my brother Mark, and everyone else on the farm did an amazing job of running the farm when I wasn't around. Even when I got back to the farm, Tim and Rodney were doing a fantastic job of making sure everything got done....something they've done many times! Everyone else stepped up their game also. We are blessed to have such a wonderful group of employees. They all even sang "Happy Birthday" to Herlof on his 5th birthday...what a lucky kid!
Our crops look good. Wheat harvest will begin in a few weeks, followed by pinto beans and soybeans, and then we'll finish with the corn. We did a great job of getting the crops planted timely and we've had warmer than normal temperatures, so our corn is ahead of normal schedule. Looking out the office window this morning, I'm looking at tasseling corn. So hopefully our harvest won't end in the middle of a cold November, but in a mild October!
And with all the thankfulness that we have in our lives for my health prognosis, our special farm, and our family we had another scare last week. Elizabeth and Herlof were on their way to Grand Forks for Herlof's guitar lesson when they were T-boned by a pickup while driving on the highway. Amazingly, Elizabeth and Herlof were uninjured. And thankfully the other driver was safe as well. Elizabeth, as always, did a wonderful job of caring for Herlof immediately after the accident. We are thankful for their safety and also for the Toyota 4Runner they were driving - what a safe vehicle!!
So after their accident, we've had even more thoughts and prayers sent our way. We are very thankful for that. We've even had people comment on the struggles that our family has been through these past few months. Elizabeth and I agree that we shouldn't feel sorry ourselves, but we must be grateful. I am in great shape, and Elizabeth and Herlof walked away from that accident with no injuries at all. Was that not God? As the title of this article states, "If God is for us, who can be against us?" That is the second half of the verse Romans 8:31. The 8th chapter of Romans provides great promises for us. Have a look at some point.
Our family is blessed. We continue to look to Jesus in everything we do. Thank you for your love, prayers, thoughts, and support.
I'll be posting to the website on a more regular basis moving forward. Thanks again to all of you. As my wife says, we're moving "onward and upward!" God bless.