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January 3, 2012 - Dana Lantz
This is the time of year that many of us look back at the year and grade it out. As far as me personally, I have to give it an “A” and I do not give that grade out often. Farm News just celebrated its best revenue year ever, I love my job and the people I work with, my family life is solid as a rock and we had our first grandchild, so all-in-all a darn good year. So here is a look back at 2011.
2011 started out by getting a new snowblower for Christmas. I was so excited, no more back breaking work using the shovel on my driveway, no more fighting with my kid on helping dear old dad scoop out for free, with no attitude and with a smile, just because he loves me and wants to help me out! Alright, that was just a lie or a dream anyway, seems he knows most of the child labor laws especially the one that says that the answers for if he can help are: Ugh! Really? This is where the eyes roll so far in the back in his head he can see his shoulder blades. How long do I have before I need to have it done? Can I do it later? I’d rather not oh by the way can you start my truck after you take care of the snow? How much do I get paid? Fortunately or unfortunately, depending which way you want to look at it, I’ve only used the snowblower a few times due to a lack of the white stuff!
I went to a couple farm shows in January, including the Iowa Power Farming Show that was nailed by a major blizzard taking the first two days of attendance down to nothing. What did I do those two days you ask? Talked to neighbors and ate a lot of Tootsie Rolls, the candy of choice when you come to the Farm News booth. Because of the restoration to the (now old) Vet’s Auditorium our booth was moved about a half mile away, by way of skywalks, to another location which helped me work off all the Tootsie Rolls I had eaten earlier in the day. The last day of the show was finally good weather and the crowd was amazing.
In April thru the end of May I was as busy as a raccoon trying to cross the road during rush hour. This is the time of year I travel, helping my staff sell our annual Century Farms magazine that comes out each June. Also my umpiring starts. Drive all day and then get yelled at by grown men because they were safe at first when I called them out. By the end of the day I do feel like the raccoon who obviously did not make it across booth lanes. I do, though, actually like umpiring. It does take a while to get motivated to spend three to four hours on the ball diamond after working for Farm News all day but once I get out there the time flies pretty fast. I have been doing this for many years now and work a lot of girl’s weekend tournaments around central Iowa as well. I compare having plate gear on at midday in July to being in the haymow on a 100 degree day during baling season where the heat in Hades would seem like a winter vacation. The heck with diets, if you want to lose weight, umpire behind the plate on a hot Saturday afternoon.
The summer, as it normally does, went very fast. Between work, umpiring, going to baseball games to watch my son, mowing the yard, maintaining the pool in our back yard and cleaning up the left behinds in the yard from our dog plus the two dogs my daughter dumps on us more often than not, it is a busy time. By the way, whoever invented the pooper scooper was a genius. Every year we end the summer with a Labor Day weekend get together in our back yard and once again this year everyone had fun and no one drowned which is good because we don’t serve milk and cookies.
The last part of the year meant the Clay County Fair, harvest, our Farm News Ag Show and about a dozen special projects with Farm News, all of which were very successful. In November we welcomed in Jaxtyn, a 7.5 pound handsome little boy. One of our daughters gave birth to our first grandchild and we couldn’t be happier, although I wish someone would invent a pooper scooper for babies! Until next time and have a great 2012.
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