How to Spend 10 Years Married to a Farmer

1) Be patient – When he tells you to pick him up at the Lone Tree Quarter and you go to the quarter of land that has the only tree on it and he tells you that he meant the quarter of land that had one tree on it when his grandfather was farming…well, that’s just how farmers think.

2) Be flexible – When he says that he’ll be in the house in 20 minutes for supper and you get everything ready and then two hours later he walks in the door saying that some salesman had stopped and that he didn’t buy anything, but time just got away from him…well, maybe he should be the flexible one. That way he can duck when you throw the plate at him.

3) Be willing to laugh – When he comes in the house, mad that he can’t find the nuts/bolts/tools/whatever he had taken apart and had set “right there” in the shop and he needs an extra set of eyes and then when you go to help you realize that your 3-year-old had “helped” Dad by putting all the parts in the handle of the floor jack…well, that’s just plain funny. Even if he doesn’t think so. At least not right away.

4) Be willing to change your view of norm – Walking into church 10 minutes early, enjoying the prelude music and visiting with a few people is no longer a normal part of life. Walking into church 10 minutes late, realizing your 4-year-old is still wearing his “rubby” boots and wondering if anyone else notices the smell of cow in the air, is.

5) Remember that he relates to new situations by connecting them to ones he knows – For instance, when you’re having a child and the doctor says he may need to assist in the delivery and he says something like, “But where do you hook the chains?” Well, he’s just trying to relate. Or if your children are bornΒ weighing in at 9 pounds 6 ounces, 10 pounds 9 ounces, 9 pounds 2 ounces and 9 pounds 13 ounces, and he calls the Select Sires rep to try to figure out what his Calving Ease score would be, but isn’t feeling too bad because he’s notΒ breeding heifers any more anyway…well, he’s just trying to relate.

6) Throw out the calendar – Yes, it may be your anniversary, your birthday, Thanksgiving, what have you may…but since the weather is perfect for ______ (fill in blank) you may need to celebrate tomorrow or next week…or maybe three shindigs in one. Happy Anni-birth-giving!

7) Keep your temper – When he calls at noon, as you’re feeding four children, giving one a bath after eating, preparing a Sunday school lesson, trying to get some laundry done, washing dishes, breaking up a food fight and trying to find the wild cat that someone let in the house and he asks you if you’re “doing anything” – well, just count to ten…slowly…then backwards. Breathe. It’s OK.

8) Remember that cows and children are different…sometimesΒ  – When he comes in the house covered in manure from head to toe, yet the smell of baby poop makes him gag…well, isn’t that just sweet?

9) Be willing to love – Love whatever life throws at you…and with a farmer it will be a lot. Take each new challenge and turn it into something fun and memorable. You can’t change the weather, the conditions, the fields, so you may as well look at it with a light heart.

10) Thank God for each day – I know I do. It’s not always easy, and it’s not always light-

My farmer - AKA Boss Man.

My farmer – AKA Boss Man.

hearted, but even the tough times can be good learning experiences. I’m sure Boss Man has tons of quirky things that I do that drive him nuts, but we’ve made it 10 years now…and that’s gotta count for something.

Here’s to the next 10 – hope my guardian angel can keep up!

156 thoughts on “How to Spend 10 Years Married to a Farmer

  1. LOVE it! We’re going on year 5 and I’m smack-dab in the middle of all this. Throw in being an Army Guard wife too and well, you can understand how much my sense of humor comes in handy. . .

  2. Isn’t that the trut; excellent post Val! My favorite is when the hubby (or Dad growing up) said “I need your help, it will just take 20-30 min.” I always know it will take over an hour. lol! Where does the time go?

  3. you certainly hit the nail on the head with this one, Val! This is getting printed and hung up on the fridge for MY farm hubby to read! Whenever he comes in πŸ™‚

  4. This is not only true for the first 10, but it’s been like this for me for almost 23 years…and I wouldn’t change a thing! Well….maybe try to figure out all of the “hand” signals…nah….I’ll just play dumb…

      • It was always the whistle for us. We always knew what it meant. My husband wanted to do that whistle when our son walked into the massive college graduation venue. My son said, “I would have heard it, recognized and believe me I would have stood at attention for a minute.”

      • Ahhhh hand signals and the yelling when moving (or trying to) animlas. The answer always is, “I wasn’t mad at you it was the ______ (fill in the blank). And the birth thing, the line always was, well when will she farrow, or calve? Oh so many I could add to this. We’ve been married 36 years. Gotta love them

  5. I’ve been sharing this blog post all day and then realized I hadn’t commented. Val, this is so well written, full of truth and a tremendous tribute to your marriage, love for Mark, your family and your farm. And it makes me laugh every time I read it. Happy anniversary!

  6. LOL!! Is your husband my husband??? Happy Anniversary! I hope that you guys are actually celebrating tonight and not putting it off until the next Anni-birth-giving.
    Emily Z

    • Oh, I wish Emily, I wish. But Mark did get 100 acres of corn planted today, so deep down I should be thankful…I should. So I spent our anniversary putting flowers out at the cemetery for my grandparents and nephew. Perhaps this weekend sometime we can have a minute to ourselves. (A girl can wish, right???)

      • I’ve been married to my dairy farmer for almost 45 years and its definite not the norm. But my best advise is to realize it will take you time to adjust, you won’t change him—only how you react to him or the situation. There are drawbacks and pluses. But it’s also a life few people experience these days. And I was a city girl when we married at age 19! It was a huge adjustment for me. But it was a great way for our children to grow up. Go with the flow and enjoy.

  7. Very well said! Thank you so much for sharing. All the things I’ve been thinking and never been able to put into words! I’m for sure sharing with my friends. Especially the ones who are not involved in ag and don’t understand why my husband is never home or why we can’t get anywhere on time!!!!!

    • Thank you! And please, do share. It’s fun to hear all of the people who say, “That’s EXACTLY how it goes!” And when my hubby complained last night that he wasn’t sure if he liked my post, I went through each one and reminded him about how, when and where they happened. Needless to say, he’s wondering where my next “inspiration” will come from! Ha! Living on the farm, every moment is inspiration for a great blog! πŸ™‚ Have a great week!

  8. Val-
    Happy Anniversary to you and Boss Man. This made me laugh so hard and reminded me so much of growing up with a farmer father! Can’t wait to marry my farmer next June! Looking forward to many years of fun stories, challenges and overcoming obstacles. πŸ™‚

  9. This brought a smile to my face. My farmer hubby and I have been married for less than a year and I’ve figured out a few of the above. Someone should really write a “Things You Should Know About Being a Farm Wife” book. Your ten would definitely need to be included!! Great blog!

      • From a farmers wife of 31 years and a lot of laughs reading this to my husband; I would not say the next 20
        gets easier but alot more interesting when you through teenagers in that mix. OMG But would not change a thing.

    • Thank you for your kind words! It’s nice to know that our friends across the pond are so similar! (Although, I might feel for the wives a bit!) πŸ˜‰ As frustrating as life can be on the farm, I wouldn’t trade it for the world!

  10. haha… I LOVED reading this post! We’re not married yet, but have been together 7 years and though I didn’t come from the city, did know what cows, horses, etc. really are and how to work around them and could drive a tractor when I moved down here and met him, there was and still is a learning/understanding curve. And I too wouldn’t change a thing about the last seven years. Not the suppers in the fields, long days branding then still having to cook supper, do the dishes, etc., and I sure had to figure out quick that I’m on my way in but coming through X to get there really means that the 31 minute drive home means he’ll be here in at least an hour, more like three. Thanks for reminding me to laugh about it all today. I can’t wait to share this with friends.

  11. Thanks for this wonderful post. I date a farmer, and I know this advice will be very useful over the years. I love my farmer!

  12. This is one of the most amazing farm blog posts I’ve read in a while! Printed and shared with the wife (city gal) to hopefully see that she’s not the only one! LOL We’re going on year 2 on the farm together and 4 total. Here’s to another 50 on the farm!!

    • She definitely is not the only one! Farm life isn’t always easy, but the rewards are endless! I couldn’t imagine raising my family anywhere else, even with the trials and tribulations. Thanks for reading, and cheers to another 50 on the farm!

  13. Mine was a big city kid until after we married. So was I. We chose raising beef cattle after seeing some at the county fair on a date. We had more than 51 years together. I can relate. My cowboy ran herds of up to and more than 800 cows and a 3,000 head feedlot during our life together, showed cattle all over the country, judged, and worked with 4-H. We did most everything as a couple and a family. He was crazy, hard working and romantic. I cannot tell you how much I miss him and all this stuff you write about. Wish we had another 51 years chasing cows, getting butted, – and being late to events while we helped a heifer calve, etc. Enjoy while you can!

    • I certainly will…and there are days that I look back on this, just to remember some of the good times. It’s not all roses and romance, but it’s all mine! πŸ™‚

  14. OH goodness, # 5 is awesome. I grew up on a farm and can totally relate. The calving ease part was the best. A friend of mine said her brother decided to put her on the breeding wheel to schedule when she should come fresh. Another friend works at the local feed company and when she was expecting her first, several of the farmers asked when she was coming fresh. Crazy men. :).

  15. You nailed it again, Val! Thanks for the “Smile of the Day” and relating it! While in the stirrups at my pregnancy check…my husband called my on the 2 way radio..(before cell phones)…my male doctor thought that was so funny that when I went in to have our son…he was still chuckling about it months later in the deliver room! Moments with our farming husbands….Priceless!

    • They definitely are! There are times that I think I should write a book, but then again, would it go in fiction or non? Since I’m guessing that no one would believe some of the stuff has actually happened! πŸ™‚

      • I did write a book and am working on another. 1st one is I Studied To Be An Opera Singer, But I Married A Cowboy. Sold a lot of them, even to non-cowboys and non-farmers. I always emphasize it’s all true stories. Some of my old cowboy friends say they keep it in the bathroom to re-read! Don’t know if that’s a compliment or not!

      • I am going to have to track that down and add it to my must-read list. Is it still sold? Perhaps I should buy a few copies and give them away on my blog! πŸ™‚ I’m going to do some searching…thanks for the great idea, and good luck on the second book. I’ll be sure to get that one as well!

      • you go ahead and write the book everything that been said is true, i live on the farm, and it the only life i enjoy when i was a child, so on my last tour of duty in germany, i know about about rope and tackle, 24 calf came out this way help a farmer for 3 yrs. planting and picking, and working when i should be sleeping yes it was a great life. so all the ladies, yes u can find humor in farm life, where jeff foxworthy when u need him, i bet he could git a ear, full for his shows.

  16. Well said!!! Been there… Done that. I love it when you were talking about having your kids. When I was having our 1st, almost 16 yrs ago, the Dr told me he would give me a shot of oxytocin to help me along and my husband said he could have done that at home, he had a whole bottle. The Dr told him that he would have over dosed me…to that my husband quickly advised that he would have given one of his cows that weighed…. much, this much and since I weighed ### he would have given me this much. The Dr told him he was right and prescribed it. They also had a long discussion on what types of Alfalfa you should plant. Later the Dr laughed and said “Remember you married him!”

    Happy Anniversary!!! Here’s to many more…

  17. Wow, just love this posting. I’m am coming up 23 years married to a dairy farmer . Oh how your post hits the perverbreal nail on the head. And to top it off when you talk about throwing out the calendar , out anniversary falls around moose hunting season, in October ( here in ontario Canada ). So, thank you again for this enlightening post , I am definitely sharing

    A dairy farmer’s wife


  18. or when he says “Run me over to the other farm to pick up a truck” which you assume will take about 5 minutes so you leave the green beans simmering on the stove and your freshly washed hair still wrapped in a towel….. Then after you pick up that truck, you have to take it to another farm to drop it off, pick up the tractor and whatever he is pulling behind it and follow him home because its almost dark.
    42 years for us!

    • Yes, and by the time you finally get back home, the hair is a towel-wrapped, air-dried rats nest and the beans have simmered themselves dry on the stove! Good thing he still has “10 more minutes” of work to do outside yet so you can start making your dinner over again! Or he called earlier for the implement dealer to set a part outside so you could pick it up after hours, and do ya want to run over there a minute with him and we can get dinner on the fly? Haha!

  19. Great post! Several of these cracked me up! I’m not married to a farmer, but I have several in my family and community that I thought about when reading these. Thanks for sharing and Happy Anni-birth-giving! πŸ™‚

      • A friend just shared this on my Facebook wall today, it sure rings true. Our first 2 kids were born in June (haying and spraying season, not good), and August (harvest time), so we planned the last 4 to be November/December-ish, after harvest and hunting. My poor August kid usually gets his b-day celebration a month or two late-the next rainy day. My hubby made the comment a few times about pulling our baby with calving chains. I can never commit to anything too far in advance. No one understands that we “live by the weather forecast”. We’ve taken up winter sports to bond as a family since we don’t have much time together the rest of the year. I can’t tell you how many times he has been delayed because a salesman or neighbor shows up to the quonset to chat. My vacuum is my best friend, there is always mud and grain at my front door-oh and in my laundry too!! I’ve learned from my mother-in-law the art of keeping dinner warm for hours, and choosing meals that will transport to the field well. All our land is named after farmers who owned the land decades ago, or after some odd characteristic to the land. I STILL haven’t gotten the names down, and we’ve been married 17 years. The only time we go to the local National Park (Waterton Lakes) is on a rainy day. Oh, the many farm medicine remedies; many a dog has been elastic banded instead of heading to the vet to be neutered. Yes, the gagging at baby diapers, hahaha!!
        Have you seen this one before? It’s on our wall, makes me giggle.
        ” You May Be a Farmer If…

        by Alan Thompson.

        -Your dog rides in the truck more than your wife.
        -You convince your wife that an overnight, out of province trip for equipment parts is a vacation.
        -You wear specific hats to farm sales, livestock auctions, customer appreciation suppers, and vacations.
        -You have ever had to wash off in the back yard with a garden hose before your wife would let you in the house.
        -You’ve never thrown away a 5 gallon bucket.
        -You have used a chain saw to remodel your house.
        -You can remember the fertilizer rate, seed population, herbicide rate and yields on a farm you rented 10 years ago, but cannot recall your wife’s birthday.
        -You have fibbed to a mechanic about how often you greased a piece of equipment.
        -You have driven off the road while examining your neighbor’s crops.
        -You have borrowed gravel from the county road to fill potholes in your driveway.
        -You have buried a dog and cried like a baby.
        -You have used a tractor front-end loader as scaffolding for roof repairs.
        -You’ve used the same knife to make bull calves steers, and peel apples.
        -You wave at every vehicle whether you know them or not.
        -You always look when a vehicle passes your house, even at night.
        -You have used something other than paper as toilet tissue.
        -You refer to farms by who owned them 50 or more years ago.
        -You give directions to your farm by using area landmarks, not road numbers.
        -You have animals living in buildings more expensive than your house.
        -Over 50% of your clothing came from feed or seed dealers.
        -Family weddings and special events are planned around spring planting and fall harvest.

  20. well having done the first ten and then ten more and getting set to start the 3rd ten (in other words having been married to a farmer for almost 21 years) along with also being the mother of four children now in their late teens early 20’s, I can tell you this list is so true. I’m sure you will find things to add to this but as long as you always remember your #10 you will be able to handle anything your farmer throws at you.

  21. Well said. I have been married to that farmer for 34.5 years and you have said it all. All the other posts from other Farmer’s Wives are great as well, I think we belong to a type of sorority club The Farmer’s Wives club or something. Keep your chin up ladies, what would they do without us, and wishes to all for many more Anni-birth-giving days.

    • Thank you, and thank you for reading! And I think we all DO belong to that secret club, we don’t have a secret handshake, but all it takes is a look between us to know we’re on the same page!

  22. Well girls, I have over 30 years of experience and every word is true! I could add a lot to this list, but would not change this for anything in the world. I went from being a city girl to a farm wife, and things some years get pretty rough, but raising that next generation on the farm is priceless, and there is nothing in this world like waking up and smelling that fresh turned dirt. Great to have my farm husband and sons!

  23. This reminded me of a day many years ago I HAD to go to Aberdeen to get some duct thingy for Shorty for the barn. When I told him how full my day was…he told me most farm women love to go to town cause they can go shopping…and I was thinking …yah for groceries, diapers and cleaning supplies…so I went. 20 years later we are ready to tear the barn down and that duct thingy that was apparently life or death for our survival that day is still sitting in the corner. (..I kept a close eye on it’s importance for years!) no wonder the barn fell down-ha!

    • Now that’s a Shorty story for the record books! I love it! I am so glad that you were able to get the ever “important” item for him…and I agree, had he used it, the barn would have stayed standing. πŸ˜‰ I know someone else suspiciously like that…and often wonder the wisdom of having the two spend so much time together! πŸ˜€ I do believe you are destined for sainthood! ha!

  24. This was written for my Dad, Grandpa’s, HUSBAND, Father in Law, all the McKay men I’m related to! Gordon Mckay, Alan McKay, Pat McKay, Bill McKay (Lacrosse), Jeff McKay , Mark McKay, Mike McKay, Brett, Bart, Yancey Eldridge, and on and on………good writing!

  25. Today marks One Month of being married to my farmer so I very much enjoyed reading this and looking forward to the next 10 years!

  26. We have been married almost 46 years and I can relate to all of those. Especially the ‘can you help me 5 mins?’ I know that is al least a half hour. We found out I am very sensitive to the smell of diesel fuel. It makes me forget everything. I no longer have to drive the tractor while baling – thank the Lord. He couldn’t understand why I couldn’t remember which lever to push or pull – now we know – I just couldn’t remember!!

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  28. Had a good smile on my face reading this. My husband and I are both farmers and have been married for 6 years with 3 kids. I think I have one to add on to the list. 11. Kids are planned around farming. My last two were born at the end of March. This way my husband could take parental leave and get planting and harvesting done while at home. I could hire an additional summer student while on recovery. His boss asked if he counted days until I could get pregnant again.

  29. All SO true – really enjoyed the post (as did my farmer!). I have seen my husband with his arm so far up a cow’s lady parts that she pooped in his ear but he puts a kitchen chair over a doggie accident in the house so I ‘won’t step in it” , thanks honey…

    Also we enjoy a running commentary of everyone’s crops, “Ray’s beans don’t look so hot this year”, “I wish I had half the money Doug spends on fertilizer”, “Tim better mow that hay, I don’t know what he’s waiting for…” every single time we drive by! Whatever dear…

  30. So true, I was married to a farmer for nearly 22 years. (R.I. P.) There were many nights with grandpa and dad spending the night in the pen with a sow ready to deliver. I was brought the runt and told to find an alarm clock and ” baby” it through the crises. Never a dull moment.

  31. Must always remember farming is a way of life, just not a marriage. To be a farmer’s wife you must also be able to back up anything at least a half mile on a no maintenance road and for real points have a trailer behind the pickup in the muddy, dark or rain. And keep your mouth shut if you get chewed on because you had a little trouble. Also you say a pray to the Lord with thanks when the combine and truck roll home long after dark because no dew means rain–because they are SAFE..

  32. OMG ! You hit the nail on the head! All of this is sooooooo true! they certainly have a different way of looking at things! I have survived being a farm wife for 46 yrs. ! It has been quite a ride!

  33. Loved it! it was so true! Married to my farmer for almost 33 years with 5 kids 2 more by marriage and 3 grandkids through all the ups and downs. Good thing I’ve always loved roller coasters because life with a farmer is one heck of a ride!

  34. Husband ” sorting cows this afternoon I could use your help”. Wife “sure.” After the first hour. Husband “Can you stop that red white faced one?” (as the herd goes thundering by). Wife “which one?” Husband, ” the one that calved by the old combine last year, too late, guess we’ll have to try again.” 1 hour later Wife, “why are you yelling at me?” Husband , cause you obviously can’t hear me!” Soon wife has had enough and is heading to the house followed by the herd dog.
    Thankfully for the husband she will soon forgive him and be willing to help when he asks again. But not the next day!
    Been married over 30 years and can’t thank my wife enough for putting up with me. I know it wasn’t easy at times but was worth it for the long haul.

    • Even this spring I convinced my wife to pilot our 110 feet of Tractor, airseeder and packers through the city of Saskatoon. When all was said and done without a hiccup she said she would never do that again. But I know she would in a heartbeat if she was on the right medication.

  35. Married 30 to my farmer husband. I have gone to the wrong farm to pick him up for a ride. Burnt a roast when “It wonl’t take long.” My favorite “Is dinner ready?” when I have been outside working with him on a project.

  36. What a great article–and so true!!! I have been married to my farmer for 54 years. We now live in town and he still helps our son on the farm. I still haul meals out there in the fall. The farm is a wonderful place to raise kids. We had a boy and a girl and they learned to work and take responsibility. We all drove tractor, milked cows (we had dairy for 30 years), tended pigs and all that goes with it. I learned patience when the meals were late, the cows broke out of the pasture in the middle of the night, and when I had to drop everything to run to town for a part. But I wouldn’t change it for the world. I now have 5 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren and they all have roots on the farm including loyalty to John Deere and asking every fall ‘can it snow yet’ to grandpa when harvest is almost completed. Thanks for putting the word out how great it is to be a farm wife…..

  37. Honey, I think you better look a little deeper. alot of what you say is true. But if you don’t get out there and work along side him. You won’t make it the next ten years. And take those four kids with you. You will be do pleased at how they will grow up by learning what they do working along. Best of luck.

  38. Wow, could I relate! My farmer hubby and I just celebrated 30 years together. I’m still cooking for harvest crews. The celebrations of special events does get better as you get a little less busy. πŸ™‚

  39. I’m a city boy who went to a small town H.S., so I had lots of farm friends. My city raised Granddaughter married a farm boy in Iowa in July, grain and pig farmer. I shared this wonderful post with her and she was very appreciative. I could relate to the directions thing. I can’t tell you how many times, when asking for directions, I was told: Go down to the Hardroad and turn left. (All the roads were oil and chipped) or go down to the Turkey Farm and turn right (No Turkey farm for 40 years). Oh do I love rural America.

  40. I just had 2 separate friends send me this link. I’m am a self proclaimed city girl and in November I will be marrying the love of my life, who happens to be a farmer. So many wonderful tips and insight you shared. Thank you!

  41. This is awesome! (My hubby actually took the chains to the hospital when out first boy was born… he thought he was being funny)

  42. I am a town girl who fell in love with a cowboy about 4 years ago… never a dull moment. I thought I understood because my sister married a farmer… BOY WERE MY EYE OPENED!! We wedding was last October (of course the ceremony had to be late in the day due to corn harvesting) which included hay bales and corn stalks for decoration and lots of cattle jokes I am still figuring out. I followed him to a very secluded and remote island in northern Ontario to a place we could afford our own farm. I was very clear that I was never going to the barn, would never help with the cattle and would never ride a tractor…. well not only have I started to do all these things but our big date is going for a drive to check cattle at different pastures and grab an ice cream. I know the names of bulls and can spout off sentences like “she is pretty thick and soggy… but I don’t like her front” be clear I have no idea what that means… but I can make it sound good. I was sure that I would be able to maintain my promise that I would not become a farmer that it was enough that I was making sure he could live his dream…. I have plenty of time to do my own thing that is for sure but the thing is that this life is now our dream and it is better than anything I could have planned. I love being a farmer’s wife… we are unspoken heroes. I am ok being a slave to the weather, that in reality we are just high stakes gamblers and that life get put on hold when cows are calving. I loved the advise, words of wisdom and solidarity your blog has given this sorority of sisters. It made me laugh which as a farmer’s wife is something we have to do a lot… but they say laughter is the best medicine and good for the heart. Thanks again and I am so glad to be a newby to the sorority, so many great woman to teach me and guide me!

  43. Love it! 9 years married to my farmer and we just went through (and are still going through) a farm transition (i.e. bought and renovated a new place and moved the whole herd and all the equipment down to what feels like a different world of farming) and things have been amazing and busy and stressful and beautiful all at the same time. But I wouldn’t change him, or our farm life, for the world! I’m pretty sure we told each other happy anniversary last month… I think it was in the form of a text.

  44. can relate to this comment over and over 4 times cause i also have 3 sons that are just like their father and i try to worn their girlfriends of what it is like being married to a farmer( nothing better in my book) love them all!!!!

  45. Oh my goodness what a post! It’s our 10th anniversary tomorrow. My husband is a pork farmer with 400 acres of cash crops. Every post is so true. Thanks for the good laugh.

  46. I’ve been married to a farmer for 36 years now and I can relate to everything you’ve mentioned! Thanks to women like us and men like our Farmers our families continue to grow in Jesus Christ and we continue to feed the world!! There is nothing more satisfying then working on what means the most to us- our men and our children! XO

  47. Just hafta say I love this article. This is way too much like my husband! We just celebrated our 2nd wedding anniversary in the hospital havin our first baby girl. He asked the dr if he should bring his calving chains. Here’s to many more years and wonderful memories.

    -PA farmer’s wife

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  49. Been married to a farmer for 47 years. I even got to ‘lampoon’ him when I went to Delaware to teach marketing to ag women. It was my first experience moving cattle from the pasture to the feedlot. My theme was ‘communications’…only mine involved hand signals. I knew north, south, east, and west…as long as I could see landmarks, like grain elevators. At the bottom of a ravine pasture at high noon, there are no directions. Head them north meant nothing, but for some reason I did. They piled through the open gate onto the gravel road. So far, so good. DH was on horse, I’m in a front wheel drive Jeep. Cattle liked horse, not Jeep. Having no idea how close I needed to be (been married 2 months), I hung back. I didn’t want to spook them…had been told ‘DO NOT SPOOK THE CATTLE’! I saw a hand signal that went in a circle above the cowboy and horse…this meant that I needed to go around the section and meet on the corner…right? Nope! Fortunately, the cattle liked the horse and kept following her around the corner while I came roaring up the road in front of them. You know, he didn’t even divorce me…still married and not using hand signals unless ‘someone’ explains them in advance πŸ˜‰

  50. I can totally Relate to all 10!!! I’ve said forever that my husband can tell You anything, about any cow (use to be horse lines but then he fell in love with Black Angus cattle) on our place but is clueless of my birthday.

    • Bahahaha! So true! I did make it easy on him, though…his sister’s birthday is March 26, my birthday is April 26 and we got married on May 26. (Not the same year, mind you.) If he forgets, it’s not for lack of trying.

  51. One more thing I learned from being married to a farmer. When the cows, sheep, goats, pig or whatever gets out and is running loose through the neighborhood and he’s yelling at you and the children because you just didn’t have the nerve to stand in front of 40 herding animals and they get by you, he’s yelling at the pigs,cows, etc, not you. And always shut gates.

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  54. I too have enjoyed the roller coaster marriage of a farmer’s wife for 38 years now
    – never a dull moment. Whatever doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger. I agree with all 10 points and the comments about hand gestures!

  55. Absolutely! Been there/ I’ve spent 60 years with my farmer, and things are different now, and I miss that life. But I think when I get up from this computer and my knee snaps with each step I’ll remember why it’s different.

  56. I was a nonfarm girl and have been married to my farmer 49 years. I can relate to everything you said plus a few more. Like when you run over the crop while running the sandfighter. Just take it out of my pay. “What Pay”? So many more things not mentioned that you and your farmer can reminis about in the later years.

  57. Wait until you have made it 37 years like Judy and I did. I was ready for 37 more but I guess God needed her more than I did.

  58. It carries through the generations too. I’ve heard my mother’s voice as I say, “I wish your daddy would come on in and eat his lunch.” Mama passed away in April 2013. When I was visiting Daddy this summer, my sister was there and I said, “I wish Daddy would come on in and eat lunch.” She said, “You sounded just like Mama when you said that.” Yeah, I’ve had some practice.

    With the babies: DH was a witness to my C-section. My OB is the wife of a friend he has had since middle school. He said, “She just reached right in there and pulled him out like pullin’ pigs.” When the kids were smaller (ages 8 and 11 now) and I didn’t like how group play was going or something another adult said, he’d tell me later that he “saw my ears go up.” Yep, it’s a cow thing.

    Great post.

  59. Oh my gosh, your blog is like a support group for farm wives 😊
    I’m a city girl who married a cattle farmer 41 years ago. I must admit, though, wouldn’t have it any other way. And apparently most farmers relate to things with what they know…after one of our daughters was born weighing in at 10 lbs 7 oz, my husband said, “Wow, I throw pretty big calves, huh?”

    Great post!

  60. I enjoyed this post. It has been 49 years for me as well as living with my rancher/farmer dad for the first 18 years of my life. I have often said, “It was not always easy, nor was it always fun. It just always was!” Our whole family is richer for it…including our grandchildren.

  61. Another of the top things to know is this. When the husband sends you to the parts store with ALL of the information that you will need to know to get the right part, some vital part of the information will not be there. I grew up on a ranch 90 miles from the parts house. Not only did we not have cell phones back in that day, we were so remote that we did not even have land lines. Poor Mom. It was so frustrating.

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  65. as a farmers son and a farmer myself most of my life I can relate to all of this. We are not perfect. Especially with the time thing. My wife is super tho! food brought to the planter tractor or the combine and she feeds me anything that needs a spoon as I drive! Thank god for jump seats on the new machinery. She has gotten very good at finding my field or farm descriptions. like the old shed farm, or the hale bale farm or the three cornered field. She used to drive tractor and combine when we were younger. at times we each had a kid in the cab with us for the day. Man, the stories we each could tell about our life. Like the time we first started hauling grain with a semi. She says I want to drive, I say ok, but stop on the street and let me drive into the elevator, it’s kind of narrow. I had a tough time the first few times. Well, scared the heck out of me because she sails right in at a high rate of fuel consumption,, slams on the air brake, looks at me and says, what’s so tough about that? We bought a new combine a few years ago, she had never been in it. Grandson and I ride from one end of the field to the other with her and I say Ok, We’ll run and dump the grain cart at the truck and meet you at that end. don’t drive up to the truck, with this bean head it’s really close, I’ll get it, shouldn’t have said that, she swings up on the opposite side of the trailer before we have the cart empty turns on the auger and says on the radio, make sure you fold the cart auger before you move, my auger is out!!! Gotta love her!!
    A story about our first pregnancy. We are going to Lamaze classes and our vet and his wife are too. We’re sitting side by side on the floor and the instructor stops and asks Terry and I if we are learning anything? We look at each other and bust out laughing as i say, yup we better not reach in for the feet and tie twine strings on to pull with. The instructor didn’t have a clue, but it was a long time before Terry and I got to practice for the next baby I’ll tell ya. She is definitely my other half and is the glue that kept the operation together all these years!!!

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  68. *marking “FARMER” off of my list of potential mates…* But that explains why they were never on time to church when my daddy was a pastor. πŸ˜€ Cute article!

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