Blogs

Don’t be a horse snob

By Kim Lemmon

During my lifetime, I have attended many horse shows. My parents started taking my sister and I to shows as babies and they continued that practice clear through our high school years. In fact, I still attend horse shows with my family from time to time.

When we first started attending horse shows, we didn’t own horses; we were just spectators. When I was in the third grade, my parents bought their first horse and a few years later we started participating in horse shows.

I have competed in open stock horse shows, 4-H shows, open draft horse shows, open miniature horse shows, and college team-oriented horse shows. I have judged 4-H, open, and middle, high school and college team-oriented shows.

I’ve watched many different breed shows. During the 1980s and 1990s, our family vacation was spent watching two weeks of horse shows at the Ohio State Fair.… Continue reading

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Pondering berry picking

By Matt Reese

It is berry picking time at the Reese house as the black raspberries are ripening early this year. This has provided me with ample opportunities to busy my hands with work while my mind can wax poetic. These just pop into my brain while I pick (and eat) raspberries before the birds get to them. I thought I’d share the results of my berry picking pondering here.

A berry today or a pie tomorrow,

To eat either brings joy and to not brings sorrow.

To enjoy berries today is a wonderful thing,

But waiting a bit can even better treats bring.

So I eat one or two and I save three of four,

Then eat a berry and save a few more.

For a man who saves berries is really quite wise,

When he has a wife who makes raspberry pies.

 To pick berries brings such pleasure and pain,

Fingertips punctured and stained.… Continue reading

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The Ty-rade – Pickin’ on Popcorn

By Ty Higgins

I should NEVER watch the news right before bed. I get so upset at some of the ignorance blaring though the TV that I can’t settle down. I start foaming at the mouth and just blurt out my thoughts to a yawning audience. It drives my wife crazy. The last time this happened she yelled back “Just go write a blog about it and let me sleep!”

So that is what I am doing. Welcome to the initial entry of The Ty-rade. I won’t always be angered when I sit down and share my thoughts. Sometimes the stories will be insightful, sometimes they will be spiteful and hopefully the majority of the time, like this one, they will take on both characteristics.

News anchor Erin Burnett hosts a show on CNN titled “Out Front”. Her attempt is to be a bit edgy and to find the stories that she thinks are examples of the government and large industries “putting one over” on the American people.… Continue reading

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An unsual barn dog

 

By Kim Lemmon

A lot of folks have a barn or farm dog that accompanies them to the barn or around the farm while they complete their chores. I’ve always adored barn dogs and coveted them because of their companionship and ability to enter the barn first and check for wild critters that may be hiding.

I’ve never been able to have a barn dog of  my own. I currently own three dogs and they are all too wimpy for barn work. They run off at the sight of their own shadows.

My neighbor, Patricia, used to have a yellow lab that accompanied her to the barn daily for chores but the lovely dog sadly died of old age a few years ago. I know Patricia has missed that dog daily. It was great to have a barn buddy.

I often visit with Patricia and her horses when she cleans her horse stalls.… Continue reading

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Enjoy some wine and cheese in June

By Matt Reese

Vanilla ice cream paired with chocolate sauce, a hamburger hot of the grill paired with a fresh sliced garden tomato, watermelon in a bowl of mixed fruit, sweet corn paired with pretty much anything — the summer months have arrived and so has my hankering for delicious food combinations I seek out during this wonderful time of year. Not to be outdone, though, is maybe the most popular pairing of all — wine and cheese.

Of course, June is Dairy Month, and a great time to enjoy dairy products of all

kinds.

“June Dairy Month was started in 1937 — and that means this year marks the 75th anniversary of this celebration,” said Jenny Hubble, vice president of communication for American Dairy Association Mideast. “June Dairy Month was initially created to stabilize dairy demand during periods of peak production but has now developed into an annual tradition to honor our dairy industry and the many contributions it makes.… Continue reading

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"Nothing worthwhile is easy Ellen."

By Kim Lemmon

Chevy Chase is one of my favorite actors. The misadventures in which his characters find themselves involved often leave me in stitches and sometimes seem alarmingly familiar.

Lately, I’ve been working on more projects in and around the barn. I’ve torn down two small sheds and installed more fencing and performed other improvements in the barn. It isn’t easy work; especially, when you are used to spending most of your time behind a computer screen instead of working with tools and lifting heavy objects.

Often my mind wanders while I work on these endless projects. Recently, I’ve been pondering a line in the movie, “National Lampoon’s Vacation.” The characters are preparing to head out west on a family road trip when Ellen suggests to her husband, Clark (Chevy Chase), that it would be “easier to fly.”

He responds in a mildly condescending tone, “Nothing worthwhile is easy Ellen.”… Continue reading

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“Nothing worthwhile is easy Ellen.”

By Kim Lemmon

Chevy Chase is one of my favorite actors. The misadventures in which his characters find themselves involved often leave me in stitches and sometimes seem alarmingly familiar.

Lately, I’ve been working on more projects in and around the barn. I’ve torn down two small sheds and installed more fencing and performed other improvements in the barn. It isn’t easy work; especially, when you are used to spending most of your time behind a computer screen instead of working with tools and lifting heavy objects.

Often my mind wanders while I work on these endless projects. Recently, I’ve been pondering a line in the movie, “National Lampoon’s Vacation.” The characters are preparing to head out west on a family road trip when Ellen suggests to her husband, Clark (Chevy Chase), that it would be “easier to fly.”

He responds in a mildly condescending tone, “Nothing worthwhile is easy Ellen.”… Continue reading

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Food production is no piece of cake

By Matt Reese

Hundreds of years of agricultural innovation, research and hard work have made it easier to produce and consume food. This, after all, is what people have always sought with agricultural production. Foraging for berries and killing wild animals for food was certainly not easy, which resulted in the need for agricultural production. Tilling the soil and toiling on the land to produce food in the earliest days of agriculture was easier, but still not easy.

Since then, mankind has continually sought to make food production and distribution easier through a wide array of scientific advancements and innovations that have changed the business of agriculture and changed the world and society in the process. Now, food is comparatively easier and cheaper than ever before. A meal is just a trip to the grocery or a restaurant away. The process to get it there is still by no means easy, but it is easier (I would guess) than slaying a wooly mammoth for dinner.… Continue reading

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Rodeo clowns and caviar

By Ty Higgins

All in all, I am pretty comfortable in my own skin. With that said, I try as hard as I can to not make a fool of myself whenever possible. Every once in a while, however, the situations that I find myself in leave me no choice.

One of those situations happened earlier this week when I headed to Chicago for the BASF Ag Solutions Media Summit. I would be doing BASF an injustice if I didn’t mention how spectacular and enlightening the event was. The focus was sustainability and you can read more about the summit and listen to my interviews here.

I would be doing you an injustice if I didn’t write about the reason that I felt like a rodeo clown at a caviar convention.

The event was held at The Trump Tower Hotel, my room was there as well. A one-night stay is about the equivalent of a week’s pay for me and if it weren’t for the summit, I would have never stepped foot through the gold-trimmed revolving door.… Continue reading

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Not quite The Memorial

By Ty Higgins

Golf is one of my true passions. I’m not quite sure why because I’m not all that good.

I think it is the idea of being outside on the plush fairway (sometimes), the cell phone muted and my only worry being what iron to use from 150 yards out with a light breeze behind you.

My love for the sport makes this week a special one for me every year as Columbus and its golf hero hosts the World’s best for The Memorial Tournament. Sure the curse of Leatherlips can cause things to get a little soggy at Muirfield Village, but seeing Mickleson and Woods pass by as they walk the course is always a rush for this golf geek.

I have played some really majestic golf courses in my life. I have had to hit over the Atlantic to an island green and have played on tracks that feature more sand than grass.… Continue reading

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Sun, sweat and hay

By Matt Reese

As I finished stacking the last few square bales on the third load for the day, I used my shirt to wipe the sweat out of my eyes and hopped off the wagon. As a child, I hated baling hay. I hated the inevitable heat, the dust and all the green stuff that gets lodged in your nose. I hated the oppressive heat of unloading and the scratchy hay against my skin.

But now my hay perspective has changed a bit. My father-in-law bales around 50 acres of hay, some in square bales and some in round. And, while I can’t say that I look forward to helping on the wagon stacking bales, I can’t say that I don’t enjoy it, either.

In this busy time of my life, most of my days are spent chasing deadlines and children, doing household chores or running from one event to the next.… Continue reading

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Hay in May: What a relief!

By Kim Lemmon

I’ve never made my own hay but that doesn’t mean I can’t sympathize with those that do. Hay farmers worry about rain and cutting and baling the hay at optimum maturity. I worry about running out, over ordering and having the strength to stack it.

This year was different because I was never worried about running out. It became clear that I had over ordered in 2011 plus the beautiful April and May weather were sure signs of an earlier than normal hay harvest.

Usually by this time of year, I’m counting and recounting my remaining hay stash and readying myself for a mid to late June call from my hay suppler to come and pick up the baled hay. For me, traditionally, June is a month spent worrying about running out of hay or being ready for the call to come get the hay. I’m always glad when it is over because I’m not very good at moving and stacking hay especially during heat waves.… Continue reading

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Immaculate conception in goats: The results

By Kim Lemmon

If you are reading this blog, hopefully you’ve ready the original story and the follow up. Today, I’m reporting the results of this two-month long journey with my silly little pygmy goat Little Bunny Foo Foo.

Earlier this week, I decided things just weren’t looking right so I took Foo to the vet a few days earlier than my self-imposed Memorial Day deadline. I didn’t want to spend the three-day weekend wondering if she was still indeed pregnant or not. The last couple of weeks, she had looked like maybe things weren’t going so well.

The vet sort of smiled when I drug my darling little Foo back for his examination. We both agreed we would be happy if I was the crazy one that was overreacting. He gave her a physical exam and then decided on X-rays this time.

You haven’t lived until you have helped X-ray a goat.… Continue reading

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The mystery of the Central Ohio cereal killer

By Matt Reese

My kids love Life — cereal.

It was nearly bedtime for our two children and they wanted a snack. After debating the merits of candy, ice cream or cookies before bed, I convinced the children that some delicious Life cereal was the best way to go.

I got the box out of the cupboard that I had put there after breakfast that morning. I opened it up and poured out some of its contents into a bowl with an unsettling “thwump” sound. I looked in the bowl to find a coagulated mass of partially crumpled up Life cereal. I poked it to find that it was sort of gooshey and quite unappetizing in every way.

My mind started racing to assess the potential causes of this horror wrapped up in a cereal box. Had this been festering in there for weeks (or months) since it was packaged? What were the health implications since we’d eaten from this box for breakfast?… Continue reading

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Maybe it should be spelled Pharming

A few weeks ago, a co-worker and I were talking about all of the trying challenges that come with farming. As we were chatting we noticed that there were many words (some that will not be used in this post) that started with the letter P. We laughed it off at first and then I got an email from her later in the day that proved our theory even more. So, without further adieu, here is our list so far. Add to it if you would like and Happy Pharming!

Patience

Planting

Produce

Peeved

Praying

Pour

Pounce

Packing

Punishing

Prod

Procrastination

Pace

Pressure

Pleasure

Poop

Pale

Pail

Parcel

Planters

Parked

Pest

Phosphorous

Pigweed

Precipitation

Politics (especially this year)… Continue reading

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Is this a dog show?

By Kim Lemmon

Sometimes while attending horse and livestock shows it can be difficult to determine if you are attending a livestock show or a dog show. Dogs of all shapes, sizes and dress codes often steal the show at events that are actually held for other species of animals.

Recently, I attended the River Ridge Charity Horse Show at the Ohio Expo Center, and I can assure you that this group of spectators and exhibitors had great love for their dogs. It was often hard to concentrate on watching the horse show with all the distracting well-dressed and colorful dogs marching up and down the aisles as they accompanied their owners — or babysitters if their owners were showing — to the seating area.

Some of the dogs seemed to enjoy watching the show. Some seemed to take naps on their owners laps and some seemed interested in greeting every dog that went past their seat.… Continue reading

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May — what a month!

May — what a month! It is National Egg Month and National Hamburger Month, which are two of my favorite things.  In fact, fairly recently I had a combination of the two and it was delicious. I will say that the initial thought of a delicious egg on a delicious burger did not necessarily sound appealing, but it was actually very good. My wife and kids met me in Columbus for lunch at a small Columbus restaurant called “Skillet” that focuses on serving foods produced at local farms. I got the burger and it had an egg on it, along with some other tasty stuff. It made for a fantastic May sandwich.

May is also a great month because of the excitement of the planting season and, more importantly, my birthday. But that is still not all May has to offer, here are some other important days in May. I found this on the Internet, so these all must be true:

 

May 1 is .… Continue reading

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Immaculate conception in goats: The update

By Kim Lemmon

If you read my blog in March about immaculate conception, you are aware that I own a pygmy goat doe that has managed to become pregnant through mysterious circumstances. I thought I had the how, when and where figured out in March so I was confident that she would kid no later than April 12 and most likely before Easter.

Late March and early April were hard times for me because I tried to stay home with Foo as much as possible — pygmy goats can need help with kidding from time to time. I also had the baby monitor on in the barn 24 hours a day so I could hear Foo if she needed help.

By Good Friday, I was out of my mind. During the next seven days, I was supposed to attend two kids’ birthday parties for my niece and nephew and an Easter dinner.… Continue reading

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Preschool animal day

This week, the Reese family was fortunate enough to get to help with our

daughter’s preschool animal day. In our rural community, several of the kids

in our daughter’s preschool are from farms. So, on a pleasant spring day,

locals bring some gates and some critters and set up a fun farm day right outside the church preschool. We brought two sheep, along with some lamb recipe cards and some fun sheep stickers to hand out to the kids.

The event was a huge success, with a young boy staring up at a massive Case IH tractor saying, “This is the best day EVER” with the sincerity only a four-year old can muster. There were cows, a goat, ducks, rabbits, a pony, donkeys, pigs and a preschool full of happy kids.

When our four-year-old daughter’s class came through the display, we were

very proud parents as she told her classmates that the sheep were Horned Dorset ewes.… Continue reading

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Taking the “Subway” approach to farming

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

What is it about heading to your favorite restaurant with your family for a bite to eat? For some, it is the atmosphere, for others it is the food and for many it is the fact that their kitchen can stay spic and span for more than an hour or two. No matter what the reasoning, eating out is time that my family and I enjoy on occasion.

How much do you know about your favorite eatery? Do you ever think about what goes on behind the swinging doors that your waitress pops in and out of with full and empty trays?

I am not trying to put negative thoughts in your head about where you eat, although you might have already done thate yourself. It is a good thing that we trust other people enough to let them prepare food for us. It says a lot about our society, if you ask me.… Continue reading

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