I can’t believe 2013 is almost over! Sometimes I really wonder how time seems to move so fast.
Some days, I feel like I’m just getting older! Case in-point: my niece turned 16 and got her drivers license this year, my vehicle hit 155,000 miles and is now over 10 years old, we bought a house, and I got excited about getting a water softner installed! Yeap, definitely getting older!
I wanted to do a little recap about what we all did in 2013. Sometimes I can’t believe the things I’ve already forgotten! I think my resolution for 2014, will be to start a journal so I won’t forget everything! It truly was an amazing year full of wonderful blessings and busy schedules!
Cabo San Lucas, Mexico!
I started off 2013 with a trip to Cabo San Lucas with my friend Karrie and her parents! Her mom & dad have been like a 2nd family to me since about 4th grade! They are organic farmers in my hometown and I’m still fascinated by how they do weed control! Her dad calls my hubby for troubleshooting on their combine too :) It was my first “real” time in Mexico (I’ve been across the border at Progreso) at a resort with drinks, whale watching, fancy restaurants, pool and beach sitting and so much more! It was fantastic and a much needed vacation away from Minnesota weather!
P!NK in concert! The Xcel in St.Paul!
So normally, a concert probably wouldn’t warrant special attention for me in a year. We go to a few every year. But frankly, P!nk’s concert was pretty darn amazing! The acrobatics involved were crazy and she sang a wide variety of her songs so it brought me back to middle school! I was able to go with a large group of friends. Pictured below are my friends Liz and Karrie. The other reason this warrants a special mention: get out of your bubble! We couldn’t find a place to sit in a restaurant as all were packed downtown St. Paul, so Karrie just sauntered on up to a booth full of women and sat down. We made some great friends (paid for their meal for letting us sit with them) and had a blast!
Traveled to Seed Savers in Decorah, Iowa
So for whatever reason, this year I decided to try out this whole heirloom seeds thing. Needless, to say, my garden did not have much success other than radishes, some spinach, carrots and green beans. No tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, lettuce or pumpkins grew. I’ve never had any trouble with them before and my mom is a garden whisperer as she has worked for two different greenhouses, and has never had trouble with her plants before. My mom chuckled and gave me a big old “I told you so” when it came to that one. From now on, I will be sticking to getting plants and seeds that are conventionally grown and are from our local green houses. We have 2 fantastic ones in my area: Donahue’s and Drummers. On the plus side, we were able to learn a lot from our trip down there. I even wrote a post about it. I learned my lesson, and my mom was right…again.
We bought a new (slightly used) camper!
We bought a new camper! This was so exciting for us as we love to camp! We had been camping in a 1979 pop-up. Retro orange interior and everything! We sold it for what we bought it for, and purchased this baby: a Jayco Quest 5th wheel! We camped in our yard the first weekend we brought it home.
I Graduated!! (Insert cheers here!!)
I finally graduated! I received a B.S. in Sport Management and a B.A. in English Literature from Minnesota State University, Mankato. I seriously thought I would be done with school. Then I decided to further my education and started my graduate studies during the fall.
We put another crop in the ground.
This warrants a huge mention in 2013 because we literally didn’t know if we would be able to get a crop in the ground this year. We worked in our crop insurance guy, our seed salesman, a implement dealer and the big Guy upstairs to make it happen. In MN and surrounding states we were involved in a situation called prevented plant. It was a mess. The fields were way too wet, acres were left unplanted and equipment broke. Luckily for us, we were able to change out some of our fields to soybeans, and in some areas of our fields we just pulled up and left it unplanted. However, neighbors weren’t so lucky with whole fields going unplanted.
We completed three 5K’s, including the Warrior Dash!
Here’s what happened this year in my training for running. I ran my first 5K in early May which was a hills 5K through a State Park. I didn’t do too terrible all things considered, but ended up pulling a muscle in my back-I know weird. Since then, It made running and doing everyday things difficult. I completed 2 more-one I walked with someone who had never done one before-my momma! Plus, she completed hers with a knee replacement! You go mom! Then I completed the Warrior Dash, which thankfully my friend Nicole stuck with me throughout it because my asthma kicked in full force after the first hill. Go me. But I did finish them all, and the Warrior Dash was a blast. It left me bruised, bloodied and full of mud, but it rocked!!!
We traveled! Vacation to South Dakota!
We took our camper across state lines into South Dakota this year for vacation. Mark had not been back to see Mt. Rushmore since he was a kid, so I decided it was time he saw it again through adult eyes (I have been there various times growing up because we stopped on our way to see family in Idaho). We were able to visit Mt. Rushmore, the Badlands and Custer St. Park. We visited 2 different wineries: The Naked Winery and Prairie Berry Winery as well as visited Firehouse Brewing Company in Rapid City. We went horseback riding, hiking and swimming! It was a blast and a very busy vacation.
We purchased our first home!
So there’s a ton of things wrong with it: location, it’s not in the country, its tiny, there’s no fenced yard, no heat registers in the main room of the basement, we trip the circuit breaker every time we plug in the vacuum and the kitchen is definitely not big enough. BUT it is our house, our own space and we’ve already made many memories there. It does have good qualities like original hardwood floors, all brand new appliances, a brand new kitchen, new bathrooms, new carpet, and a new furnace, plus a small heating and electric bill. It is closer to Mark’s family’s farm, but further away from my mom’s. In the future, we hope to build somewhere in between the two. It works for now, and it is a big accomplishment for us too!
Minnesota Farm Bureau
There’s a few things to say here. We completed another year doing the Speak for Yourself program! We were elected to the LeSueur County Farm Bureau board. I completed an internship with the Farm Bureau. We were also chosen to be featured in the Minnesota Farm Bureau building at the Minnesota State Fair! Below is the photo that was used. We also worked up there in the building too, helping answer questions about farming. Most were surprised to find out we were young farmers, and I had a moving conversation with one lady about farm protection and land protection so we can keep farming. It has been an awesome year as members of the Minnesota Farm Bureau!
AgChat Conference 2013
I was able to attend not one, but two AgChat conferences this year! Wow. Feeling so blessed. The first time I kind of went on a whim to the regional conference in Rochester, MN, as my fee was paid for with a scholarship. I learned a lot and immediately put it on my calendar to go to the conference! The actual conference was in Charlotte, NC. I met so many amazing people that are farming, blogging, and telling their stories. It was inspirational, motivational, and thrilling. I walked away with a renewed sense of self, and more reason to tell my story. I truly hope I can get to the next one!
We celebrated our 1 year anniversary!
In 2013, we were officially married a whole whopping year! We took 1 year anniversary photos and went to the Cheesecake Factory. I thought the photos would be a great way to commemorate a year and to see where we’ve come in our marriage every year. So from now on, I’m going to try and get photos taken around our wedding anniversary time. It will be fun to see the changes every year!
I painted my own masterpiece!
Okay, so maybe not a masterpiece, but I had a great time painting my own canvas! My friend Nicole, invited me to go to a Wine and Canvas night up in the cities with her. It put me out of my comfort zone, and I had to struggle a bit with the painting, but in the end, I walked away with a new work of art that hangs in my office. I still think it is awesome how different our paintings look when we painted the same picture! I also was able to spend some much needed time with a friend I’ve had since high school!
We harvested a crop.
I feel like no matter what, having a harvest will always be a highlight of the year. You just never know if you will have a crop at the end or not. We were really worried about yields with the wet spring, and then having drought conditions in July and August, then having freezing cold temperatures in early September. I’m thankful we were able to get the crop in the bin with very few issues.
Had a blog post get lots of attention
Some days I write and wonder if anyone is even reading this. Then I wrote a blog post about women farmers wearing makeup. Needless to say, it got some attention. I can’t thank the blogging community enough for all their support and sharing of it. It was pretty awesome, and it gives me encouragement to keep writing.
We were in our first wedding together (not as bride and groom!)
I know, a weird milestone, but we come from two very different towns an hour apart with a very different group of friends. We were so honored to be part of our friends wedding as a bridesmaid and groomsmen (we even got to walk down the aisle together!) because it felt like a milestone for us as a couple. Both Amy and Aaron were my friends before Mark and I were together, so it definitely means a lot for the two of them to include and be friends with my husband. It was a fun wedding, even if it was freezing for the first weekend in October. We danced a lot, Mark told the story of Aaron eating one too many cream puffs at a party we had, and Amy had us take some sweet pics on her parent’s farm. So thank you to Amy & Aaron for letting us be a part of your big day and for giving us a new milestone as a married couple!
Spending time with family
One of the many things I am thankful for in 2013, was being able to spend time with family. We (my mom, myself and Mark) were able to visit my aunt Linda, who is my dad’s sister, and pictured below. She has been battling cancer for, well as long as I can remember now, going through remission then it coming back. The doctors have told her they can’t cure her this time, but try to keep the cancer at bay, instead. Linda is a fighter, so she keeps going back for treatment. I treasured the time I was able to spend with her this fall, because frankly, you just never know.
Well, that’s all she wrote for 2013. Thanks for recapping some of my biggest moments with me. I’m ready for a new year though. A new year focused on our farm, my husband, my career, schooling, and personal growth. I have already signed up for a free online class (besides my graduate studies) about agriculture that starts in 2014 and 2 conferences. I also am making sure I include a little bit more time for fun this year as last year was consumed with school, work and internships. I’m also making sure I focus on my marriage, and how we can grow as a couple and bring God as a focus in our relationship. I’m excited for 2014. How about you?