This little guy is Stetson Searle, and he’s the fifth generation of Searle boys to be planting grain & spuds on his dads lap, watching in awe as the wheels turn and dust flies.
Some nights when Jade drags in after midnight covered in dirt & grease, praying that the rain will hold off so we can get crops planted, I’m reminded how lucky we are to live this life.
We don’t do it for the money (you wouldn’t see a farmer out this spring if that was the case). We don’t do it for the great shifts or hourly pay. During winter calving, spring planting, summer haying or fall harvest, (that about covers the four seasons, doesn’t it?) our time is often spent away from our cozy farmhouse. It’s spent in the barn, having dinner in the tractor, all night baling hay, or a quick goodbye kiss on the forehead while Stetson’s asleep in the early morning.
There is no denying the wear and tear on your body and the haven’t-seen-my-husband-in-daylight feeling that sometimes overwhelms me.
So why do you farm, you’re probably wondering? Well this spring season, as we’re getting our crops in the ground, these 2 pictures sum up what life is all about to me.
We get to see miracles every year – the fall wheat popping through after a long winter, a sick calf healing up and taking to its mom, hay growing back for a 4th crop, and big healthy spuds being dug up in the fall. We’ll get to teach our kids about hard work and miracles, about obedience and blessings, because they go hand in hand. We get to teach them first-hand the ability to have the faith to plant a seed and watch it grow as you nurture the soil. We get to spend time together, learning together. Doing what we absolutely love.
There are people now days who claim that ranchers abuse animals and farmers are going to kill us with pesticides. While I can’t speak for every farmer and rancher… around here, I’d take those folks out at 2am where Jade is giving some electrolytes and milk replacer in a bottle, feeding 3 small calves with a heater on and old blankets around them. I’d like to introduce them to a few people; the good-hearted neighbors for one, who are up just as late in their tractor one field to the south, planting their spuds in the ground with a hopeful sigh. I’d introduce them to the hired guys who leave their families for 7 months of the year who come to be a part of ours – and work hard day after day – almost always with big smiles on their faces. And don’t forget the field guys, figuring out the safest and best ways to increase our yield so the world has enough to eat.
When you sit down to your next meal, don’t just think of us, think of all the farmers who are up late planting their crops this spring, and maybe just include them in your prayers. We’d all appreciate the extra love.