Minnesota Farmer


30 days: Blogging after the harvest

Wow! I’ve reached day 30 of the 30 day challenge, and I still have things to say!  Today it’s blogging.

Back in 2009 I was at a Minnesota Farm Bureau meeting where we were challenged to get involved in a new thing called Social Media.  Activist groups were taking over this new mode of influence.  Some very nasty things were being said about agriculture and we were challenged to get involved and tell our story.  The thing is, that if you are not involved in setting the table, the next thing you know, you may be on the plate.  The goal is to stop fighting over divisive issues that some are pushing to the forefront.  We are trying to stop the food fight.

no-more-food-fights-sm

Author Michele Payn-Knoper calls for decorum instead of mayhem in the conversation around farm and food. http://www.causematters.com/farmfoodbook/

I am not your usual blogger.  Most bloggers are younger and female, so a mid-50’s (now 60) male on the blogosphere was a bit unusual.  Yet I did have something to say, and I hoped that with my years of living someone would listen to me.

To get a large enough audience you have to say things people want to hear, share your personal stories and get known.  Then, when they are comfortable with you, you can write opinions that may, or may not be well received.  You also need to be reading, and responding to, other people’s blogs.  A well thought out response may just make someone curious enough to check out what you are saying.

I also think it is important to write carefully.  I am distressed when I read well thought out comments or blogs that are full of spelling and grammar errors.  To be believed, I think you must write like you actually have a few brain cells tied together.  Now I do not write with perfect grammar, but I do hope that I write well enough that my old english teachers would be surprised at my progress.  Back when they knew me, I was a farm kid who had no intention of being a writer.

Today, I am still amazed when people stop me and comment on something I wrote.  To have local people reading my blog is unexpected.  I have had many nice things said about me when I do chance to meet one of my fellow bloggers at a Farm Bureau meeting away from home.  All I can do is say “Aw, Blush, Thank you” when they do.  I have even been asked to comment on agriculture issues and had them reposted or quoted from by bloggers I respect, some of them from very far away.  This is getting to be more than I had ever expected.

This month I have joined other agriculture bloggers in an 30 day challenge to write something every day for 30 days.  I have been pleased to join these folks in this challenge.

30 Days Bloggers

It has been an interesting 30 days for me, and I hope for you also.  I invite you to contact myself or one of these other farm bloggers if you have questions about what is being said about our food.  I can tell you that they will take your concerns about the food you eat seriously.  If we do not know the answer, we can steer you in the correct direction.  So thank you for joining us on this 30 day challenge of blogging.

Michael



30 days: It’s yard work after the harvest
November 21, 2013, 8:41 am
Filed under: Fall, Farm, garden, harvest, house, pond, projects, snow, water garden, weather | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

It’s day 21 of the 30 day challenge and I have some yard work to do.

Farm yards, just like city yards need work, but our yards are bigger.  When the harvest is done, there are things to do to get that yard ready for winter.  Leaves are blowing around and the grass needs to be cut again, tree branches have fallen, and the yard just needs a tidying up.  Many farmers wives have jobs off the farm and weekends are busy too, so the farmer must now tend to his yard work.  I’ve been up on the roof cleaning gutters and doing other small maintenance on the house.

100_1735We also have an artificial pond near our house so blowing leaves need to be removed from that before they settle in.  The pumps must be pulled up and the heaters put in to keep our fish happy when the ice forms.  Every little thing you do to make your house and yard better means you have more to care for before winter sets in.

Today the temperatures are falling and snow is in the forecast.  Looks like I may be on the last possible day of yard work.  Better get going.

Michael



30 day challenge
October 30, 2013, 8:50 am
Filed under: Farm, harvest | Tags: , , ,

The gauntlet has been thrown down and I have accepted.  The plan is for agriculture bloggers to write a post every day for 30 days.  Hmmm…. what should the theme be.

We’ve had a very busy fall and those not involved in farming may be wondering just what does a farmer do when harvest is done.  So, here it is, I’ll be letting you know some of the things that we do after the harvest.  I can tell you now that some days will be boring, but hopefully it will give you an insight into what happens on the farm after the harvest.  For some of those days I’ll be reaching back to what we have already done, we did finish our harvest days ago.  Still others may have a theme that is centered on a conversation that sparked debate.  All in all I hope you enjoy the month.

I’m definitely going to be a different voice in this challenge, since most of the others taking part are younger than my 60 years and female.  That does not mean I have nothing to say.  Come on, those of you who know me know I am seldom at a loss for words.  Still it is going to be a challenge.  Expect to see the following as themes.

30 days: Cleaning up and putting away

30 days: Turning poop into fertilizer

30 days: Trimming up

30 days: Planning for planting

30 days: Getting ready for harvest

30 days: How much wood

30 days: At church again

30 days: Farm Bureau days

Hmmm…  Maybe I can find 30 subjects to write about.  Stay tuned!