The Calm Before the (Corn) Storm

12 Sep

The tall, swaying stalks out my bedroom window make it impossible to ignore: fall is here. More specifically, as the Dairy Man keeps reminding me, corn harvest is almost here.

DM is charged with nervous energy and dancing around the house humming “It’s the mooooost wonderful tiiiiiime of the yeeeeeear.”

I, on the other hand, start hearing the music from Jaws: “Daaaaa dum, daaaaa dum, daaaaaa dum da dum daaaa dum.” This week truly is the calm before the storm. Before the sharknado of farming activities, if you will.

People, a corn storm is brewing.

cornfield

It’s time to prepare, to brace myself. Call it mental calisthenics. As I stand on the precipice of a few weeks alone, it’s important to stretch my farm wife coping mechanisms (and stock up on dry cereal and wine).

This is my third corn harvest out in the boondocks (read about year one and two here). I’m not a rookie. But it will still be a shock to my system when DM slips into the delirium that can only be caused by corn harvest.

Over the next few weeks, we will harvest approximately 1,100 acres of corn babies. (Well, I suppose they’re corn adults at this point. *Sniff* They grow up so fast.) This will involve DM spending countless hours in the tractor building monstrous piles of corn covered with tires and plastic and seeing a whole lot of this:

Packingcorn

Unlike some farm wives, I don’t get very involved in the process. I work an 8-5 job wearing pencil skirts and stilettos and haven’t the foggiest idea how to operate farm machinery (for good reason). I’m currently planning EIGHT work events for this fall and stress-eating peanut M&Ms like it’s my job. My role on the dairy is to support, ensure DM is eating something every day, and keep myself entertained. Because, really. Can you see me driving a tractor?

MFW+tractor

I do not have the farming wardrobe figured out.

For all of the craziness these next few weeks will bring, I don’t want to miss the excitement, the progress, or the beauty of this time of year.

Corn harvest may signify dinners alone, an inconceivably exhausted DM, and a depressed Jersey the pup, but it’s also the culmination of so much hard work.

Despite a weird, wet spring, our corn was planted with intention and care. Dairy Man spent half his life checking pivots and making sure the babies were getting enough water. The leafy green stuff has survived dry weeks, wet weeks, and gale-force winds.

It feels good to be this close to the finish line. Corn harvest represents time well spent. It promises that our bovine ladies will have plenty of food over the next year. It also gives me large hills to scurry around on like a mountain goat.

Onthepack

It’s the little things when you’re a country bumpkin.

My biggest compliant is that I will lose the blossoming privacy screens surrounding our house. Things always feel a little forlorn when the corn comes down.

corn tassles

But for now, I will savor these final days of summer. I’ll soak in quality time with DM. I’ll take quiet moments to sit in the grass and let the rustling whisper of the stalks speak to my soul.

Just a few more days, my pretties.

farmers in corn

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13 Responses to “The Calm Before the (Corn) Storm”

  1. Judy Hirdes 09/12/2013 at 12:42 pm #

    another fun post Jessica. I really enjoy reading them for your wording, or as Bob Pohler called it “word Smithing”. Since I did grow up out in the country I at least know some of what you are talking about. But the 1100 acres is unbelievable.

  2. Vonnie Folkema 09/12/2013 at 10:30 pm #

    Love! your corn storm picture … and everything else. another great write!

  3. christa 09/13/2013 at 6:24 am #

    Our yard is surrounded by corn too. It’s nice not to see the neighbors 🙂

  4. Lauran 09/19/2013 at 6:01 pm #

    Hubs tarped his last night. Took forever. Late night of me watching from the window. So glad it’s done. Now looking forward to October when irrigation system is shut down for the season.

    • the Modern Farm Wife 09/26/2013 at 11:44 am #

      Wow! It must feel so good to have all of that done. Winter can’t get here soon enough. Never thought I would say that! 🙂

  5. Samantha 09/20/2013 at 7:30 pm #

    Hi Jessica! I love your blog so much, I have been reading every single one. I am with a farmer as well, he farms a little over six thousand acres and reading your blog has made me realize that I am not the only one out there going through this! We are also from Michigan, we live in between Lansing and flint, and just like you, “country” or “farm” life was a very foreign issue to me. My farmer is not dairy, although we do have some steer. But we have everything from field corn, to sugar beets, soy beans and the list goes on.. Thank you for encouraging me. It is often times very hard for me to comprehend his work because my selfishness gets the best of me and I am left at home… Alone.. . Bored. So just like you, I have learned to have hobbies. I am very in to my church. I would love to pick your brain some time about how you coped in the beginning. We have only been together over a year and I do find myself getting more comfortable with this lifestyle. I love my farmer and the last thing I want to be is a dream crusher / nagger. If you get the chance, shoot me an email at simanthuh1234@gmail.com
    I would love to ask you some questions!

    • the Modern Farm Wife 09/26/2013 at 7:33 pm #

      Hi, Michigan neighbor! I’m so glad you can relate to this crazy life. 🙂 I’m definitely not an expert, but I’d love to try and answer any questions you might have. Shoot me a message at themodernfarmwife@gmail.com.

  6. jarfullofdreams 09/25/2013 at 12:20 am #

    I know what you are going through. Not seeing the hubby very much during harvest is the pits. We live in Didsbury, Alberta, Canada and farm grain and have beef cows 🙂

    • the Modern Farm Wife 09/26/2013 at 7:33 pm #

      Thank goodness it ultimately ends, eh? I never thought I would be looking forward to snow… 🙂

  7. Samantha 09/26/2013 at 9:01 pm #

    Not only did I never think that I would be so excited to see snowflakes in the air, but I also never thought that I would be sad to see winter go! I literally go through this hissy fit, almost emotional breakdown type crisis where once warmer weather starts setting in, I literally start sobbing andreminiscing on the past winter, all while trying to make peace with the fact that my days are going to start getting very lonely.
    Awesome post Jessica! I know what you mean when you say that you feel as if you can’t possibly take one more farm crisis/incident! And yes, some days it feels as if it takes EVERYTHING inside of me to not respond in anger and confusion “CAN’T I GET ONE HOUR OF YOUR UNDIVIDED ATTENTION!?!?!?!”. It is a choice. Sometimes daily, sometimes hourly and even at times minute by minute to choose to support him, love him and encourage him in his passion.

    Look forward to reading your next post!

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