Sarah FickenComment

You Know You Are a Farmer When.....

Sarah FickenComment
You Know You Are a Farmer When.....

Your animals have their own refrigerator in the barn.

While the animals don’t store their snacks and soda in here, we use this refrigerator to store milk samples, extra colostrum, medicines, and the occasional pint of mint chip ice cream. Keeping a fridge in the barn allows us easy access to colostrum and medicine in case of an emergency and ensures that our milk samples stay fresh as long as possible. As for the mint chip ice cream…sometimes the farmer needs a pick-me-up.

You are a pro at removing mud from your dress shoes

The mud is always deeper than I expect it will be and the high spots I hope to jump between are always just a tad too squishy. I now keep a little bit of water and a roll of paper towels in my car and have spent many mornings in the parking lot at work undoing the damage to my shoes. The trick is to gently wipe the big globs of mud off, then wet the remaining mud with water and gently wipe the shoe clean.

You can go from barn clothes to nice clothes in under five minutes

I was astonished the first time I saw a farmer disappear from the barn and return five minutes later fully ready for church. In under 5 minutes she went from manure tinged to showered and presentable. Her trick – setting out clothing before chores and maintaining a simple hairstyle. I have finally added the farmer-to-normal person superhero skill to my arsenal and it has made going out and arriving places on time possible.  

You can give directions referencing only rocks, old vehicles, and barns.

No seriously. Go to the bottom of the hill, turn right just before the old cars, follow the road up past the 4020 and bear right at the white horse. I promise that if you follow these directions that you will end up in town. 

You recognize that “just a minute” is a relative term that can mean anything from sixty seconds to six hours.

During hay season I ran up the hill for “just a minute” and didn’t come back in until well after midnight. Whenever I think I’m running up the hill or out to the barn for “just a minute” I try to remind myself to change into farm clothes and stick a snack in my pocket. Most recently I ran outside for “just a minute” without heading my own advice to see if the guys needed lunch before starting a concrete pour and ended up running the bull float without socks on and my boots took a nice bite out of my ankles.

A farmer's tongue moves gossip faster than Twitter

Want to know what is going on in the valley? Talk to a farmer. Curious about something on the other hill? Talk to your milk truck driver or parts salesman. Want to broadcast a piece of information to the world? Make sure you share it with a couple of neighbors in confidence.

Date nights happen in the barn and anniversary dinners on the front porch.

For our first anniversary we planned an elaborate picnic next to a waterfall. A broken fence and some loose heifers later we enjoyed our anniversary picnic on our front porch. Our schedule is frequently determined by the whims of our animals and being flexible and getting to the heart of what matters has been key. Dates are important to us because they mean we can spend quality time together – so even if we can’t go out to eat or go to a park, we can spend quality time together on a tractor or in the barn. And if an anniversary is about celebrating our life together, what better way than celebrating on our front porch looking over the life we have built?