I would not be able to work the long hours of our harvest season if it wasn’t for the strong work ethic my Dad modelled for me as I was growing up. He worked 3 jobs, his day job, along with stocking shelves in a grocery store and on weekends in a fast food restaurant, to put food on the table and give our family of 8 a little extra and to get a leg up in life. When I am on my 15th hour or so here at the farm, I think of him and keep going until the work is done. He taught all of us to work hard for what we wanted, no excuses, and we as adults today, now understand the value of that lesson and how difficult it must have been for him, when it would have easier for him to give it to us or do it for us. Sharing his soft side has been a real blessing in how we relate to our family today.
He is the reason that I am a “Farmer to Boot” a true Cowgirl through and through. He grew up in the outback of Oregon and worked in the Hayfields as a youth. He rode the broncs at the local rodeo’s and worked at everything else in between on the range. When I was young he put me up on a little paint and I fell in love. When I wanted a horse of my own I did what every 12 year old girl does, I pestered him until he couldn’t take it anymore. He told me if I could find a horse and a stable to keep it he would let me have it. Well, you probably know what happened next. Yes, you are right, by the end of that very week, I had been to all the farms around and had secured the perfect place for the perfect horse. We never looked back and have enjoyed horses ever since!
I look forward to his visit each year in the fall or at Christmas. He is always ready to lend a hand when there is work to be done. This year we plan to make and form butter in the wooden molds and bake his favorite German Chocolate cake. I grew up enjoying waffles and pancakes every Sunday morning and as I grew into my teenage years he made sure to make a double batch before heading to bed. My friends and I have fond memories of Saturday late night waffles! Who knew they’d be a farm favorite all these years later!
I look forward to seeing all the proud Dad’s this Sunday at the Waffle breakfast. I hope to see you here surrounded by your loved ones, who think the world of you. A big shout out to Alf, who will be here all day making sure your experience is as great as his. Say hi to him along with all the other Dad’s that work on the farm, Nanaki, Gabriel, Adrian, Gilberto, and Juan in the fields and Graham on the Tractor Train. We are all here to celebrate you on this special day of honor for the leadership and love you provide to your families!