One of the greatest blessings in my life has been growing up on a farm. Now, obviously along with the good times there were times when I didn’t want to get up before school to help milk the cows or unload hay in 100 degree heat, but I wouldn’t take any of it back. It’s the lifestyle that has drawn me to a career in agriculture, first as a middle/high school agriculture teacher and now working for the Wisconsin Farm Bureau. Even though I am not in the classroom anymore, there is always an opportunity to teach someone, young or old, about agriculture.
Lucky for me, I have plenty of opportunities to teach my nieces and nephews about life on the farm and they LOVE it, or at least I am telling myself that they love it though they might just be in it for a ride on the gator. I want to instill in them a love for the land and animals and tell them all about how the farm works and where their food comes from. For the past few months, I have taken my niece Claira out to the same spot in a corn field not far from my parent’s farm. We hop in the gator, Claira sits in the back while our loyal and trusty farm dog, Pepper, takes her spot in the passenger seat. I’m pretty sure there are some chuckles as the neighbors pass by and see the dog in the front seat and Claira with her head poking up in the back.
Claira thinks we are just going out for a ride and taking picture for her crop report but, we have had the chance to talk about what the corn needs in order grow, what Boo Boo (the name my nieces and nephews have given my dad…weird…I know) is going to do with the corn and what has changed since the last time we were there. I have also learned a lot from this four year old little girl – boys are rough and silly, how to keep a very busy schedule and information on the newest Barbie that is out on the market. What I take pride and pleasure in is hearing Claira tell others about the corn crop and what she has learned through our rides in the gator and conversations about the crops. So, if Claira, a four year old, can share her story about agriculture, couldn’t you?
As I travel throughout Northwest Wisconsin, I present to you, “Tales from the Road,” random stories and people that I meet throughout my travels as a Wisconsin Farm Bureau District Coordinator.
p.s. Enjoy the photos, a few of Claira’s crop reports.
Paul Hetke says
Wendy needs a raise, those of us in district nine know how good we have it.