All Aboard Harvest | Jenna: My last night
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Jenna: My last night

Just a quick note tonight, as I need to get to bed. My younger sister, Taylor, and I are leaving bright and early to make the long trip home. Yes – this is my last night on the ol’ harvest run.

School starts on the 24th, so leaving now will give me a chance to get home, moved in and somewhat adjusted to my “other” life. My parents and youngest sister, Callie, will remain here in Jordan, Mont., until the job is finished. If it continues to rain the way it has the past few days, though…who knows when they’ll be home! They’re usually back around the first or second week of September.

It’s hard to believe my 2009 wheat harvest is already over. It feels like we just left home, and here I am getting ready to go back. I guess I’ve kind of been ignoring that fact for the past few days and trying not to think about it. It’s best that way – I tend to get a little sentimental. :]

There will be a special All Aboard section in an upcoming issue of High Plains Journal – sort of a summary and farewell. But I’ll continue posting on the blog for a bit longer about the trip home, how the harvest is going, etc. So, it’s not goodbye completely yet!

Jenna Zeorian can be reached at All Aboard 2009 Wheat Harvest is sponsored by High Plains Journal and DuPont Crop Protection.

  • Your mom
    Posted at 08:28h, 17 August

    Jen – it’s 2:00 a.m. and I’m finding it VERY hard to sleep. You know how hard this day has always been for me and this year is no exception. I, too, have been denying the fact that I will be losing two girls to school and the "other" routine. This year seems a little bit harder on me, though. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m just that much older or if it’s because it truly seems like the summer has zoomed by. Maybe it’s because I’ve got to have you back home again. Whichever it is, I sit here with tears in my eyes because I just don’t want you to leave! I’ve been laying in bed thinking about the summer and the different things we have done. I think this blog has been a great experience for people to see what we do and what our industry is all about. However, it’s been an awesome experience for our family, as well. We’ve heard from so many different people and have realized just how small this ‘ole world truly is! Our lifestyle is like none other! We live in a 40 foot trailer for 100 days, the "normal" summer activities are sacrificed for the wheat fields and we’re forced to endure each other every single day. Sounds rough, huh!! However, I wouldn’t give up this way of life for anything! The time we get to share as a family is like none other. There are no "outside" activities that take us away from each other for those 100 days. When we get back home and we each run to our own separate worlds again, I hate it! Call me selfish or whatever you may want but I thoroughly enjoy the family time we experience on our harvest adventure. The lump in my throat is huge right now and the tears come way too easily. I simply hate to see our 2009 harvest come to an end. We’ve done a lot of things, experienced some new "firsts" and enjoyed the familiarity of a lot. I will miss you, Jen and Taylor!!! My heart will ache for the loss of what has become routine and taken for granted. I won’t be able to look forward to seeing the "Nasty" making it’s way to the field with supper or the warmness of coming home at the end of the day to your smiling faces. Your dad and I have been so blessed! I thank you for all you’ve done to make the summer adventure run as smoothly as it has. It takes all of us working together to make this work – no one job is more important than the other. I will miss your ability to make me laugh and things fun!! Thanks, girls, for all you’ve done. I love you so much!!!!!

  • ndak
    Posted at 12:21h, 17 August

    As a young man I spent 6 years on the wheat harvest run. I loved it! I have really enjoyed your stories and pictures. I think you have done a wonderful job showing us your travels and family. Your family has a bond that could only come from working so close together each day. As a parent, I understand your mom’s feelings, much the same as we sent our kids off to college. Family bonds are forever, that will not change! And thank God for cell phones! We are about 4 hours to the east of Jordon, and have the same weather. Hopefully we can get harvest going here soon, this years cool weather has been like no other year for us.
    Thanks again!

  • Jerry
    Posted at 12:28h, 17 August

    I usually read your posts so quickly that I hadn’t realized there were comments that go along with them. When I read your post there aren’t any comments yet! I feel like I missed out on part of the journey. My loss.

    Thanks again for taking me back to my own college days as a wheat-whacker. They were good times and I would have loved to keep working the harvest if I could have found a way to earn a living doing it. Instead I have to settle for a couple of weeks in Kansas helping my brother.

    My own son goes off to college this Saturday. I know he’s trying to get on a crew for next year so perhaps he’ll run into you somewhere along the line.


  • levi
    Posted at 15:24h, 17 August

    It’s hard to believe that wheat harvers is almost over. I really ejoy reading your comments and truley miss being on harvest but with my children needing and wanting me at home, I can’t be on harvest. Just by reading your updates about harvest helps cure the urge for being on harvest. Thanks to you and the crew for the enjoyable reading that you have provided

  • c. m. gore
    Posted at 16:01h, 17 August

    I have enjoyed your posts this summer..Tracy, when we were on the road our kids where younger and staying in hotels with a 2 1/2 year old and a 6 month old was a pain. That is the main reason we moved to work in ST Louis in 1983. I retired from the U.S.D.A. in 2000 just one month after my 55th birthday and 30 years of service. Things I wanted to do did not come through. I had a good job with the Marketing Service, that were better than the offers that were made by firms that could back up the offers with real money. I still work vacation relief work and now have worked for the U.S.D.A. for 39 years, what a deal. We bought out my brother and sister on their part of my parents house in Arkansas. We will move when the housing market gets active in Southern Illinois again. My kids and wife this that Madison County Illinois is home since we have been here since 1984 and kids were in school here from K through 12. The kids now both have masters degrees and the taxes on houses are too high for a retirement check to carry.

  • c. m. gore
    Posted at 16:09h, 17 August

    This is not related to my last post, but if some one wants to see something cool they can go:

    They have an article about a new record in the Guinnes Book of World Records. On August 11, 2009 a group of 175 combines were lined up across a 140 acre field of wheat. The previous record was 57 combines. The field was harvested in 15 minutes. There are some nice pictures and the details.

    Charles Marvin

  • Cliff
    Posted at 00:52h, 18 August


    The summer surely passed quickly! Thanks so much for sharing your experiences with us and thanks for those pictures of those beautiful RED combines! And of course the family pictures were a delight. What a fun family. And to Mrs. Z., thanks for letting us be a part of your family and my compliments on your girls. What a great group. And Mr. Z., thank you, too, for a great group of gals. You’re out numbered, but seem to take it in stride. Godspeed to all of the Zeorians.

  • Tracy Z.
    Posted at 04:46h, 18 August

    To Cliff: You are quite welcome – and I agree about your comment regarding our daughters. We’ve been so blessed with outstanding kids who know what work is and understand how hard it is to earn a dollar! Jim gets a lot of sympathy with the females outnumbering him – even the dog is a girl – but he DOES handle it quite well. What you saw this summer was a true depiction of our family. Jenna didn’t do a very good job of allowing the disagreements and trials to be seen, though, so don’t think it’s ALWAYS a rose garden! We’ve enjoyed being a part of your life, as well, and hope it has given everyone a better understanding of what and who the custom harvester is. My grandparents would be so proud of Jenna, her sisters and the fact that we’re still out there doing what they loved!!

  • Jamie
    Posted at 15:17h, 20 August

    Jen – I’ve enjoyed keepin’ up with you guys all summer. You really are a great writer! So sad harvest is over for another year already. Seems like you just left and now you’re already back again. I know Myam is heartbroken…but I’m HAPPY to have you home and back at our apartment!! Thanks for the schweet headband, fool. Love you.