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Laura: 2019 Harvest is Here

Hi, my name is Laura, and my family are harvesters. Yes, I’m stating the obvious, but some say the first step to recovery is admitting you have an issue. And our issue is being harvesters. Why anyone would lay it all on the line to chase a crop that may or may not make it to harvest is beyond me. Yet, I’ve been sucked into the current and I’m not sure I want to recover.

Each day, many challenges are waiting. Even with all the modern safety features, it is still a dangerous occupation, and things can go wrong despite cautionary measures. Very few people understand or can relate to production agriculture, much less custom harvesting. Burdensome government regulations can nearly drive a person mad and make it hard for a family business to survive. Weather has yet to be tamed. Depending on personality styles, the distance and stress can strain family relationships. The paperwork never ends.

However, the reasons this occupation is so challenging are the same reasons it can be so alluring. Giving your all for something you believe in and providing a needed service for others can be deeply satisfying. Having the opportunity to employ, serve customers and work with individuals locally and across the run has led to unique relationships throughout the country and even world. We are thankful for those who make equipment safer, comfortable and more technologically advanced to help us do our part to feed the masses. Being a part of the tiny percentage of population that harvests means there’s an opportunity to understand others’ viewpoints and share the story of agriculture with those who may be unfamiliar with how their food gets to the table. Government overreach gives one the opportunity to stand up and use their voice to push for change. The weather may be a source of gray hair, but it allows a person to grow their faith and witness the incredible power of nature that can’t be rivaled. Albeit painful at times, the constant roller coaster of ups and downs have stretched our family and our perspective. That pile of paperwork means we’re still in business.

So, here we are, days away from leaving to join 2019’s harvest run. I know there will be challenges as well as joys this season, and you can’t have one without the other. Being directly involved in American agriculture was something I wanted from a young age. I am thankful for this current season of life being involved with harvest. I’m especially grateful for the opportunity to share about agriculture through writing. Thanks for making that possible by following this journey. Adventure awaits!

Photo Credit: Laura Haffner - High Plains Harvesting
This field was looking so photogenic the other morning that I had to stop my run to capture it. Wheat is probably my favorite grain crop. Its hard to believe this field will be golden in just a few short weeks when we return from the southern run.

Photo credit: Laura Haffner - High Plains Harvesting
The kids packed prematurely the other day, They would not believe me that we weren’t leaving the next day. Bless their hearts, they tried so hard to stuff all their clothes and toys in those bags. I felt terrible when we eventually had to unpack them again, but they needed something to wear! They are excited for the season!

Photo credit - Laura Haffner - High Plains Harvesting
We were thankful for abundant moisture this winter which means the crops are looking good in many areas. The children were excited because there were abundant sledding opportunities! Win-win! Oh, and we still have two children, the third in the picture is a cousin!

Photo credit: Laura Haffner - High Plains Harvesting
Waiting on go! The crew has been hard at work getting everything ready to head south!

All Aboard Wheat Harvest is sponsored by High Plains Journal and John Deere. Laura Haffner can be reached at laura@allaboardharvest.com.


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