Erin Brenneman I was a city girl.
That’s right, I was born and raised in LaGrange, Ill., a suburb of Chicago. My graduating class, pictured to the right, was just short of 800 people, (that’s me on top of my fingernail).
I always needed to factor traffic into my driving times, and I judged distance by the time it took to get there instead of miles. My husband once described it as “always being in town no matter how far you went.”
It seemed like a silly statement to me then, but I get it now. I love my city background and wouldn’t trade it for the world but I feel so blessed to be a converted farm girl now.
Erin Brenneman Growing up in the city and moving into the country gives me a great perspective on things that I do everyday now. I have realized how very little people know about the agricultural community.
Most people now no longer even have a grandma or grandpa that lives on the farm.
My own family members were curious about what was growing in those fields that they drive past when going down I-80, saying, “That doesn’t look like corn.”
It turns out that they were simply looking at soybeans!
It seems silly to those of us who live and breathe country life, of course, but people honestly don’t know. You would be amazed at the number of people who think those vast fields of field corn are actually sweet corn. It is a question I have been asked more than once.
I remember when I first started coming around my husband’s family pork farm before we got married. He would travel to and from Ames every single weekend to go work and I never understood why.
It most definitely sparked my curiosity.
What could be so attracting to a college student to want to skip the WEEKEND to go home and work? So of course we started seeing more of each other and I eventually began to tag along with him.
Erin Brenneman I was blown away. I remember one morning weaning pigs into the nursery with Tim and his uncle. We were climbing into the pens with hundreds of plump little weaned pigs and sorting them down by size in a 100-degree room, all while his uncle sang some goofy song at the top of his lungs.
I thought to myself, “This is what you DO for a living? This is your job?”
That’s when it dawned on me, how little my generation and the people I grew up with know about our food and where it comes from. I had never really thought about it until I was here and experienced it firsthand.
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