30 Days on a Prairie Farm: Love

My Generation

Day 17: Why we really, really love farming, and why we need to stop and remember.

Published on: November 17, 2012

This month in Prairie Farmer, we devoted an issue to celebrating all that's good in agriculture (here, here, here, here and here). It's been a tough production year on the farm, and it felt like a good time to pause, reflect, and remember the good.

Go ahead. Tell me this doesnt warm your heart.
Go ahead. Tell me this doesn't warm your heart.

And so with that in mind, we invited readers to participate. In the meantime, I drove up to the Joe and Emily Webel farm and shot some photos of their lovely family. They shared their thoughts on why they love farming, and it was so perfect. I loved it completely, and I loved how real they were about their operation and their life.

So here, I share with you the story from the front of this month's Prairie Farmer. My apologies if you've read it already, but some stories bear repeating, especially when there's a chance for a non-farm audience to see them.

It's been a year to remember in Illinois agriculture, and for all the wrong reasons. Foul weather, foul harvests, foul moods.

Still, is there something to celebrate in farming? Prairie Farmer thinks so. Even in a crummy year.

So do Joe and Emily Webel, who farm with Emily's family near Farmington. They say there's a lot to celebrate, and their farm family is at the top of the list.

"I want my kids to have a connection to their family heritage," Joe says. "This isn’t just what we do; it's what seven generations of Webels have done. No other job provides the opportunity to teach so much about life, seasons and change, and connecting with nature as farming."

Emily agrees. "Life as a farm kid isn't just location, it's an identity. It is who they are, not just their address. The lessons learned from open space and solitude and chores and multiple generations of family are far better than cruising around town on one's bike, like I did."

And like scores of other farm kids all around the state, the Webel kids are learning to work alongside Dad. "My kids see their dad working constantly. They are witnessing work ethic so much that they're almost desensitized," Emily laughs.

"I love that they can jump in the truck or tractor with me after school and tell me about their day and just be with me," Joe adds. "They’ll never be this little again, and I treasure the chance to be in their life as much as possible."

 

 

The archives: 30 Days on a Prairie Farm

Kickoff: 30 Days on a Prairie Farm

Day 1: Working Kids

Day 2: Biotechnology

Day 3: Harvest Eats

Day 4: Church

Day 5: Biotechnology, Again

Day 6: Long Haul

Day 7: Hormones

Day 8: Weather

Day 9: Milk

Day 10: County Fairs

Day 11: Harvest

Day 12: Technology

Day 13: Show Ring

Day 14: Leave the Farm 

Day 15: Dialogue

Day 16: Store Grain

 

More "30 Days" farm blogs  

Looking for more 30 Days goodness? My Generation has friends and we're all blogging a "30 Days" series in November. Check out what these farm bloggers are talking about this month.

Beyer Beware: 30 Days, 30 Things You Never Knew About Food

Black Ink: Beef's a Trip - 30 Days from Gate to Plate

Confessions of a Farm Wife: 30 Days of Life on our Farm

Le Jardin da ma Vie: 30 Reasons Why I Love Being a Farmer's Wife

Go Go Bookworm: 30 Days of Farm Kid Stories

Kelly McCormick Photography: 30 Days of Thankfulness

Pinke Post: 30 Days of a North Dakota November

Go Beyond the Barn: 30 Days of Farm Life Blessings

Rural Route 2: 30 Days of the Not-So-Glamorous Life of This Farm Wife

Touching Families: 30 Days of a Town Girl Touched by the Farming Life

This Land, This Life, This Farmer's Wife: 30 Days of Thankfulness on a Family Farm

Farmgirldays: 30 Days of Farm Kids Trapped in the City

My Cows and Pigs: 30 Days of "What's that?"

Dennis Olmstead: 30 Days in a Row

White House on the Prairie: 30 Days, 30 Posts

A Colorful Adventure: 30 Days of JP