Saturday, January 5, 2013

Looking back at 2012

I hope everyone had a happy and blessed Christmas season and has gotten the new year started off on the right foot.  I was able to take a little more time off than normal, making one overnight trip to the in-laws before traveling down to Jacksonville a week later to watch Mississippi State play in the Gator Bowl. Now I'm back in the swing of things and looking forward to a productive year, but first I thought I'd give you the obligatory "Looking back at 2012" blog post.  

My son & his classmates inspecting a baby
calf during a springtime farm visit.
We probably milked fewer cows this past year than we did at any point within the last ten. With good beef prices and a not so good "milk income over feed cost" ratio this past Spring, we decided to sell a higher percentage of our cows for beef than what we typically do. As a result, we've had fewer cows milking but we've also extended our forage supplies. We should start getting  our cow numbers back up to normal within the next couple of months.  The past year also saw us breed some heifers with "sexed" semen for the first time, and all-told we had an average year for forage production.

Off the farm, I found plenty of things to involve myself in.  I helped coach my son's t-ball team this Spring and continued teaching a Sunday School class at my church up through late Fall. I was elected to leadership positions on my state's dairy policy and promotion committees, and I served as a voting delegate at the annual meetings of my regional dairy checkoff and national dairy cooperative. I even made my first ever trip to New York City in November. And, of course, my family made time to attend several of Mississippi State's athletic events over the last 12 months.

The number of you following along with my craziness on this blog or through social media outlets continued to grow, so I guess I must be doing something right. I had a lot of fun using Twitter this past year, managed to make and upload a handful of farm videos, and my farm's Facebook page saw more activity and engagement than ever before. I didn't blog as much as I have in years past, but my posts on hormones in milk, traditional vs. organic milk, and rural America's relevance ended up being three of my six most-read posts ever.

Big thanks to my family, employees, friends, peers, milk drinkers, dairy lovers, and all of you readers for the positives that came along in 2012. God has truly blessed me to be in the position I'm in, and I'm happy to be providing you with high-quality milk, food for thought, and hopefully an occasional smile.

So here's to 2012, and my 2013 be even better for all of us!

No comments: