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Rain delays Misener harvest in South Dakota

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Monday, Aug. 5

After picking up the combine and head in Dell Rapids, S.D., we headed to Gregory. Dan and August spent a day cleaning off the dust and spider webs that the combine had collected over the winter in the shed and then greased it.

The last crop the combine had through it was corn, so we had to convert it over for wheat harvest. Converting is a bit tedious, but it needs to be done.

Now, we wait.

Leslie and I were having fun in the camper. He always brings his toy combines, tractors and carts, but he had no place to unload. Granny had a great idea—let’s make some bins! So we were inventive (like any other farm kid who has a play farm) and used things around the house. It was a fun day!

Friday, Aug. 9

I love this time of year in South Dakota! The gardens are starting to get ready, and you cannot beat fresh produce. Some of my favorite things are sweet corn, cucumbers, tomatoes and rhubarb! Mom made an awesome rhubarb dessert that I just had to share.

When I asked her if I could share her recipe, the simple answer was yes, but followed by, “Well, which recipe would you like? The ‘actual’ recipe, or the way I do it?” It seems that all of her “recipes” are really guidelines, rather than to a “T.”

Saturday, Aug. 10

The rain has yet to subside near Gregory, S.D. It seems like the rain is on a schedule. Every morning around 4 a.m. it starts to storm, rains for about four hours, then the sunshine comes out. Right around 5 p.m., we have our hopes high that the oats have dried out enough to harvest the next afternoon, but like clockwork the rain comes again crushing our hopes of harvest. However, my hopes will not be crushed completely. I know the rain will stop eventually even if it is just long enough to finish what we have left. On the bright side, the rain is a good thing for the fall crops.

Since it was raining, we took a trip to our next stop on the harvest trail near Watertown, S.D., to see what the wheat looks like. It is looking great. In fact, it will probably be the best wheat Misener Family Harvesters have seen all year. Hopefully we will get some sunshine up there as well to make it dry enough to harvest, but after we are finished in Gregory.

Sunday, Aug. 11

In my previous post, I mentioned that the rain has been like clockwork: raining every day at a certain time, sunshine comes, then it rains again. So while we are waiting on the crops to dry out, we are helping out in the yard. The grass dries down enough to be able to cut in the afternoon, so Dan and I have a little fun.

When I was younger, before I was able to drive the big combines, I would beg Dad to let me drive. I kept trying to convince him that all a combine really was, was an oversize lawnmower with a 30-foot deck instead of a 3-foot deck.

Although he would smile and laugh at me for saying so, I think it eventually worked! When I was 10 years old I was driving my own big green beast and have never stopped. It is hard to believe that was over 15 years ago.

When I look at 10-year-olds today, I think my Dad may have been a bit crazy. I cannot imagine trusting a $50,000-plus machine, much less a new $450,000-plus machine, to a 10-year-old. I guess Dad had his reasons and I suppose that riding in a combine for 10 years prior to driving had a hand in it too. Thanks for planting the seed, Dad and Mom. If it had not been for you, I would not have the privilege of living such an awesome way of life that so many people miss out on.

Emma Misener can be reached at emma@allaboardharvest.com.

Date: 8/19/2013



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