Tuesday, June 26, 2012

I'm Farming and I Grow It

I came across this video last night and absolutely love it!  I watched it three times, and at that time it only had 97 views. Today at 7:40pm it has over 75,000 views!  It is amazing how fast social media can spread things.

The Peterson brothers did an awesome job highlighting Agriculture in a fun and creative way.  They did a parody of the song, "I'm Sexy and I Know It," by LMFAO. They came up with new lyrics about farming and Agriculture and titled their parody, "I'm Farming and I Grow It."  I also love the K-State and FFA promotion with their t-shirts!

So, who are the boys behind this video that has been spreading like wildfire over the past 24 hours?

Their names are Greg, Nathan, and Kendal Peterson.  The brothers work on their family farm south of Salina, KS and they are FFA alumni of SE of Saline High School.  Greg and Nathan attend K-State and are majoring in Ag Communications and Agricultural Technology Management, respectively.

The brothers did an amazing job promoting Agriculture and I can't wait to see what they come up with next!

July 1, 2012 Update: After six days of this video being on YouTube it has been viewed over 2,557,625 times!! The video and the The Peterson Brothers have been featured on just about every Ag Blog.  They have been interviewed on AgriTalk, a national news program. They were flown to New York City and were interviewed on Fox and Friends, and just about every newspaper in Kansas has written a news story on them. The Peterson Brothers have done an amazing job with all of the attention and publicity.  They have remained humble and they give credit to God for giving them these talents and allowing them to share them with others.

You can follow the Peterson Farm Brothers on Facebook, or you can subscribe to their YouTube channel, and Greg Peterson can be followed on Twitter @gregpeterson33

Monday, June 25, 2012

Deluxe Cheeseburger Salad

Tonight I made a recipe that is becoming one of my favorite go to meals for summer.  It's quick, easy, and isn't a heavy meal that will leave you feeling extremely full after eating it. I  also love it because it's made with lean ground beef!


Recipe from: Pampered Chef 
The original recipe is from Pampered Chef, but I made a few modifications to fit the ingredients I had available.


4 Sesame seed hamburger bun tops
1 small red onion, divided
1 tomato
1 lb 95% lean ground beef
1/2 cup sliced dill pickles
3/4 cup ketchup
1 Tbsp yellow mustard
8 cups (or one whole head of lettuce) thinly sliced romaine lettuce
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Slice bun tops into 1/4 inch strips.  Arrange in a single layer on baking pan.  Bake 8-10 minutes or until lightly toasted.  Remove from the oven and cool completely. 
2. Cut onion in half crosswise. Slice half of the onion crosswise into thin rings using a mandolin or knife. Cut tomato into quarters and slice crosswise. Set onion and tomato aside. 
3. Cook ground beef over medium-high heat 5-7 minutes or until no longer pink, break the beef into crumbles. Meanwhile, chop remaining onion half using a food chopper.  Finely dice pickles using a knife.  In a medium bowl combine chopped onion, pickles, ketchup and mustard.  Add cooked beef; mix well using a spatula. 
4. To serve, arrange lettuce on a plate.  Spoon beef mixture over lettuce.  Top with cheese, tomatoes and sliced onion.  Arrange hamburger bun croutons around edge of platter and serve immediately.

Yield: 6 servings

Nutrients per serving: Calories 250, Total fat 10g, Saturated fat 5g, Cholesterol 55mg, Carbohydrate 20g, Protein 19g, Sodium 750mg, Fiber 2g.

All the ingredients except the bread. 
One pound of home-grown lean beef. 
I didn't have sesame seed buns so I used sliced bread. I cut it
into slices and baked it in the oven for 8 minutes.
The browned lean ground beef.  
This steer was apparently really lean, because there wasn't any
fat drippings when I drained the beef. 
Pickle, onion, ketchup, and mustard mixture. 
Mixing the ground beef with the above picture. 
The final product!  A deluxe cheeseburger salad!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Wheat Harvest

Kansas is the wheat state, and harvest has kicked into high gear over the past few weeks. It has been great to see pictures posted on Facebook from fellow farmers as they bring in the crop. 
Here are a few of my favorites from this week. 

This one was taken by my friend, Brandon Harder, near Haven, KS.
This has everything Kansas in it, farming, wheat, and a thunderstorm.
This picture was taken by a Tom Funk, near
Hoisington, KS. Tom and several guys from our
community travel all over the state harvesting wheat. 

This photo was taken by a good friend, Kenton LaRosh near Osborne, KS. 
Now this photo has everything Kansas! Wheat, cowboys, and
tornadoes. This photo floated around on Facebook and even made
national news! The couple is Caleb and Candra Pence and this photo
was taken in Harper County, KS.  The shot was captured by their
wedding photographer, Cate Eighmey.
Wheat harvest started on Wednesday for us and wrapped up on Thursday. We only had 100 acres to cut, so it didn't take long to buzz the combine through the fields.  The monitor in the combine showed an average test weight of 60 bushels per acre.  Here are the photos I was able to snap as Adam made his way though the field.  

This is my attempt at trying to be a professional photographer
or artistic.
Beautiful Kansas landscape.

We need a rain so bad!  I almost fell in one of this cracks as
I was taking pictures!

Amber waves of grain.

Another attempt at trying to be artistic. 

One of my favorite shots from the night. 
Filling the grain cart. 

My father-in-law baling the straw into square bales after the wheat
was cut. The straw will be used in the winter for bedding when
the baby calves are born. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Truth About Being a Farm Wife

I should have been prepared for being a farmer's wife, or at least I thought I was prepared.
Riding in the combine with my dad.

I mean, I grew up on farm, I had 24 years of experience under my belt when I entered into this marriage.  My credentials for a lifetime as a farm wife were a mile long.  Just look at the list of skills I acquired as I grew up as a farmer's daughter:

-Can operate heavy machinery (tractors, bobcats, dump trucks, and backhoes)
-Drive a stick shift (My first vehicle was a stick shift)
-Successfully stack hay bales
-Knows how to rake hay
-Isn't afraid of a little hard work
-Can drive a truck and trailer
-Can deliver seed to the field when the planter is getting low
-Knows how to haul an anhydrous tank (this is not an easy feat, if you get going too fast that thing will swerve all over the highway)
-Can build fence
-Can move pigs and cattle with the best of 'em
-Can work cattle and hogs
-Knows how to show cattle and pigs
-Won't complain about not having cable TV
-Won't complain about living on a dirt road and never having a clean car, or a dust free house
-Knows how to garden
-Can cook
-Has the ability to remove dirt, and grease stains, and make whites white again when doing laundry
-Will drop everything to help move equipment to the next field
-Understands that there will be busy times of the year

The truth is even with this impressive resume' of farm wife qualities I wasn't prepared for being a farm wife. I wasn't prepared for the long hours a farmer puts in each day. I was well aware of this fact as I grew up; I remember my dad getting home late and leaving early in the morning during planting and harvest seasons. What I didn't put together was the fact that I would be home alone when my farmer husband was in the field. It didn't register that I would be eating diner alone, or waiting until ten o'clock to eat dinner with Adam. I didn't put it together there would be weeks on end where I would only see my husband for a total of a few hours a week, due to the fact he would leave before I got up and get home after I was asleep.

Why am I so conflicted with the facts of life of being a farm wife? I should be thankful my husband works so hard, right? Isn't this the quality that attracted me to him, isn't it one of the qualities I love the most about him? Yes and yes.  It just so happens that this is also the quality I despise the most during certain times of the year.

As a newlywed, Adam not being home at a decent time (and I consider 8pm a decent time) was frustrating for me.  Even though farming has been ingrained in me since birth it was still an adjustment  to actually be married to a farmer.  I would think to myself, "Why am I mad at him for not coming home at a decent time? I know he can't help it, this is his career, and I chose to be a part of it. I knew it would be like this, and grew up with this way of life." It was this fact that was the most conflicting.  If I knew it would be like this and it had been ingrained in me since I was a kid, then why was I having such a hard time with it?

The reason is because I was/am envious. I see my friends with their husbands who have 9-5  Monday-Friday jobs and I'm jealous. I didn't understand why my husband can't just put in a 40 hour week like everyone else and spend the rest of the time at home. The truth is I missed my best friend, and being home by myself just compounded the fact that I wasn't getting to spend time with him.

Another thing I had to get used to was that date nights coincide with whether or not it rains.  If it rains, there is time to go on a date, if it doesn't rain, then date night doesn't happen.  You can probably guess how many dates we've been on in the past six months.  You can also forget about going on a date if it is calving season, unless you count walking to the barn in negative degree weather at 2am just so you can spend an hour with your husband watching a baby calf being born.

I also couldn't understand why he could never commit to going anywhere.  I would send in an RSVP for a wedding six weeks in advance and Adam would never give me an answer on whether or not he would be there. Heck, he can't even tell me the day before the wedding if he can make it. It is either calving season, or planting season, he is either baling hay or harvesting crops.  Honestly, in the three years we've been married I don't think we have been to one of my friend's weddings as a couple. The only way my farmer husband could make it to a summer wedding is if it rained the day of.  I'm still trying to figure out how he made it to our July wedding.  I'm still  hopeful that one of these days I will get to send off an RSVP with a 2 in the space for number attending. In the meantime I will continue to go stag and explain to my friends that I married a farmer and it is either calving, planting, haying, or harvest time and this means he is tending to the crops or making sure the baby calves are born safely.

Even though I spend a lot of nights home alone and attend a lot of events by myself I still wouldn't trade it for any other way of life. The truth is I LOVE the life I have chosen!  I can't imagine doing it any other way or doing anything else. Yes, it is tough being a farm wife, but at the same time I have the opportunity to help grow the food that feeds America and support my hard-working husband who is out in the field everyday taking care of the crops and livestock.

Adam and I have figured a few things out with this crazy way of life as we approach our third year of marriage. Here is some advice for new farm wives and farm couples out there.

-If you are a farm wife, farm fiance, or farm girlfriend my advice to you is to find a hobby.  You will go crazy if you spend your nights just waiting on your significant other to come home.
          -Suggestions for hobbies or things to keep you busy:
                   -Get involved in the community
                   -Decorating the house
                   -Get a job outside of the house
                 -Start a blog or continue to update the blog you currently have.
                -Help you husband out on the farm when you can.

Cooking has become a new passion of
I've started running more. My brother's girlfriend, Kari, and I  have
held each other accountable and trained for a half marathon.  This
is us after running the Rock the Parkway half marathon.  I couldn't
have trained or finished the race without her!
Helping Adam tear out fence. 
- Have tractor dates.  Bring your farmer a meal for two and enjoy it while he is working in the field.  A piece of advice on this one, finger foods work best. Don't attempt to bring spaghetti or steak and expect him to be able to eat it as he is maneuvering the tractor around the field.  Tractor dates may be the only time you get to see your husband during certain times of the year.

A cabless, hot, and loud tractor date as Adam
chops silage in August. 
A tractor date as Adam is planting corn. 

-It doesn't matter if you grew up on a farm or not, if you are a farm wife or soon to be farm wife find yourself a support group.  Whether it be your mom, sister, mother-in-law, grandmother or other farm wives in the community these women will help you through the tough times.  If they are a farm wife too then they have experiences to draw from and know what you are going through.  You can talk to them about what is going on and more than likely they will have advice to share. You will also feel better after venting about the situation. A few weeks ago I stumbled upon a Facebook page that made me chuckle. It is called the Farm Wives Support Group. It made me laugh because I don't know how many times I've thought that farm wives need a support system.  It has been great to look at the posts on this page and know I'm not the only one going through the crazy times of planting, and hay season right now.

Thanks for sticking with this post until the end, it was a long one!  If you are a farm wife and read this post can you relate, or am I only one who feels this way?

What are some things you do to keep yourself occupied when your farmer husband is working long hours?

What suggestions or advice do you have for farm wives?

A few pictures of my hard-working husband as he works to produce the food to feed the world. I'm so proud of him and all of his the long hours he puts in to take care of the livestock and crops!

Tearing out fence in order to build the new one to keep the
cows in. 
Feeding hay to the calves on an early winter morning.  
Filling the planter with seed. 
Harvesting wheat. 

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