black calf
GIFT: Is there a Christmas calf on your list this year?

Merry Christmas, from our farm family to yours!

We’re counting our blessings on this Christmas Day, and wishing you and yours lots of merry.

Here it is again: Christmas Day! Merry Christmas!

As you read this, our family will have wrapped up our Spangler Christmas Eve festivities, we’ll have held our Christmas Eve service at church, and we’ll be tucked into our own home for Christmas Day.

We’ll have waited for my daughter Jenna’s heifer, Siri, to produce her first calf — due on Dec. 25. But she’s a heifer, so she’s the definition of unpredictability. Will she calve on Christmas? Before? After? Who knows? I’ll keep you posted. More predictable: her owner’s level of anticipation.

Typically, we’d head down to my dad’s right after Christmas, but see above: calving heifer. I felt bad telling Dad we wouldn’t be down until the calf is here and everybody’s cool, but as someone who’s raised cattle his entire life, Dad understands that better than anyone. Every cattleman knows: Weather and livestock will be the two greatest threats to any plans you ever make.

At any rate, if you’ve made it to this point, that means you’ve survived the December bookwork scramble, you’ve met with the accountant and multiple seed sales reps, and year’s end is in sight. Given everything that happened in 2017, that may be a Christmas miracle in itself.

Or maybe the miracle is that this year turned out so much better than anyone expected. Given floods, drought, Japanese beetles and more — including a new phrase for us all: “off-target herbicide injury” —  that’s worth a lot.

So with that in mind, we wish you a very Merry Christmas, from our farm family to yours! May your rains be timely, may the insects stay away, and may all your herbicides stay where they’re supposed to be. And most of all, may your blessings be many in 2018!

Comments? Email [email protected].

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.