Here's To The Farmer

Here's To The Farmer

Thank you for everything you do, I appreciate you.
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It's that time of year again. The time of year when you can't get that disgusting smell of the sugar beet factory out of your nose. However, before crinkling your face and complaining about the awful smells coming from inside the factories, think about all of the hard work and dedication the farmers put into their crop so you could have it to eat every single day.

Having the ability to grow up and live on a farm, I have had first hand experience watching my dad and other relatives devote their lives so others could have food on the table to eat. This has given me such a huge appreciation for both the agricultural industry and the tremendous amounts of physical labor and hard work the farmers put into their jobs 365 days a year.

In case you didn't know, farmers do not have the luxury of working a nine to five job; instead, they work from dawn to dusk and sometimes even longer if need be. I can remember days where my dad worked all day and all night just so he could get the crop off in time before the rain came. Speaking of rain, it's a pretty scary thing to have your entire livelihood based off of Mother Nature. Too much rain, crops drown. Too little rain, crops die from drought. It's the same with the temperatures, wind, hail, sleet, and snow; if conditions are bad, crops die. Farming is a very high pressure job, if Mother Nature does not cooperate and the crops die, you lose everything.

Yet, Mother Nature isn't everything, the markets also play a huge role. Everything could go right physically for the farmer; however, if the markets do not cooperate, the farmer goes down swinging once again.

I don't want you to get the impression that the work of a farmer is solely driving in a tractor. In all honesty, the majority of a farmer's life is spent working in the shop preparing the tractors for the upcoming year or fixing them when they break down, which happens pretty frequently because a lot can go wrong rather quickly with a machine so big.

After reading this, you may ask yourself why would someone even consider being a farmer in the first place?

Just know this, farming is one of the most rewarding lifestyles you could possibly have when done right. The unbreakable family bonds, strong religious backgrounds, the love of nature, and the sense of pride you have after completing a job are only a few of the amazing characteristics the life of a farmer has in store. I know there is no other place I would have wanted to be raised than on my family farm, and I pray one day my children can say the same.

So next time, instead of sticking up your nose to the smells the factories make, the dirty roads from the muddy fields the trucks come out of, or the unfortunate events of being stuck behind a tractor in traffic, make sure you thank a farmer and appreciate the efforts they put forth so you can have food on the table to eat.

Lastly, thank you farmers.

Cover Image Credit: Karla Ratajczak

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.
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Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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Coping With The Loss Of A Passion

It's hard to get it back once you lose it.

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In college, time to focus on passions seems limited. The homework, essays, group projects, and exams are never-ending.

In high school, I took my free time for granted. I was dancing four hours four nights a week, but I wasn't constantly stressed. I had time to focus on my passion, which is dance.

In college, I am a part of an amazing dance club. But I don't get to compete, take technique classes, or be with the team I was with since I was 8 years old. Now, I receive videos of my team from home's amazing performances, and it aches a bit. I am so proud and happy for their growth but jealous that they have more years than I do. It is nearly impossible to find technique classes at college to take with no car, little free time, and barely any money. I miss my team, I miss my dance teachers and choreographers, and I miss competitions, but most of all, I miss the person I was when I had the opportunity to pursue my passion several hours a week.

My passion will always be there, and I do get to pursue dance on a smaller scale with some amazing dancers in college, but I am coping with the fact that I will never do another competition with my team again, I will never be able to dance with them again, and I will never be able to learn from my dance teachers again. It's a hard loss, one that I think about every day.

To anyone who still has the opportunities to pursue their passions to the fullest extent, you are lucky. Not everyone gets the chance to keep up with their sport, passion, or activity that they dedicated all of their time to in high school. Don't take a single second of it for granted, and remember why you are doing what you are doing. Take time to reflect on why you love it so much, how it makes you feel, and how you can express yourself during it. Whatever this passion or activity is, make every second count.

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