Dates are really difficult for me to remember now that I'm at home. In my previous life (corporate world), we had company holidays and such, and I had weekends to travel places. Now, dates that I have in my calendar are planting, hay season, and harvest, among other "farming days."
That being said, it almost slipped my mind that Dad's 69th birthday is this Sunday.
I've been back on the farm about three years now. Dad (Mom too) has been supporting me all the way. My dad is a really great person. He is human, though, and makes mistakes like anyone else. We tend to do better when we work separately, but Dad says that is how he was with Grandpa.
This summer, I look at our farming operation and the challenges and opportunities we have before us. We need to expect the unexpected. It is hard to prepare for the unexpected, like the thirty-plus inches of rainfall that has fallen here since April.
We deal with several challenges that mainly surround crop and input prices, weather, and land availability. We have several opportunities, which include marketing grain, cattle, and hay. I hope that I can be as successful as my dad has been in farming. Success does not reflect the farm size, but the way we conduct business, take care of the land we farm, and manage our operation.
I hope to become more like my dad. Dad is generous with his time and belongings. If a neighbor needs to borrow something, he says "take it" and won't expect anything in return.
He is a risk taker. He has invested in various ventures over the years. Some have lost money, some have proven profitable. This summer, we have made some big plans to change our feedlot operation. Dad has an indescribable ability to bring people together for a common good and get things done.
I hope to inherit his perseverance and long-range focus. Happy Birthday, Dad!