Sometimes Shannon and I feel a little guilty that our farm kids have expectations that interfere with a few of the contemporary and social activities of their peers.
However, the values and faithful expectation that they gain from a life in agriculture mostly outweigh them.
Work ethic, hope and reward are merits learned from experience.
One would assume that Shannon, our farmer, would have started in the beginning with apples. Instead, he worked up to being entrusted with the caliber and scope of growing apples on an orchard. He began a lot of years ago with cultivating another fall staple, pumpkins. After all these years, he still plants, grows and harvests the symbolic fall veggie annually. The planting plays a significant role in the stewardship of our farm. After felling a block of orchard that is too old to be productive, he plants pumpkins in that spot for several years as the earth recuperates from the burden of maintaining the demanding fruit trees.
Just as pumpkins build up the support for the future fruit bearing timbers; projects like toiling over annual crops, build up our kids to support the fruits of their spirits.