As I was finishing picking up the yard today, getting ready to mow, I looked over and caught a wave from our decal lady. She’s been here off and on for about 2 weeks now, lettering trucks. As we stood in the driveway chit-chatting, I couldn’t help but smile!
What started out as a mandatory labeling of our semis for D.O.T regulations, has turned into something we are very proud of. And, by total fluke, of course!
The decal lady, as I will call her, is a hand painter. She paints signs, logos, decals, murals, pin striping, etc….all by hand. She is a very talented lady! As my husband was paying her for the semis she had completed, they got to talking a little bit and she just kept going on and on about how grateful she was for the business. She mentioned how times were tuff for her and how everyone was going to stickers for their decals, and that it was really starting to hurt her business. She was desperately looking for more work, and wondered if we knew of anyone else that needed any ‘signage’. My husband, being the softie that he is said, “well, if you don’t have any other work lined up, I’m sure we could find something else out here for you to do.” and so it has begun…..The mass labeling of our whole fleet!
We were so pleased with the way that the semi’s turned out that we decided it wouldn’t hurt to have her paint decals on the rest of our equipment and it might be cool too…
WE LOVE IT!
I have never been more proud! (Ok, yes. I’ve been more proud, but it’s up there, alright?!)
After she left and I was walking back into the house, I couldn’t help think of how great the equipment looked and what “Hughes Family Farms” really meant. It’s SO much more than it leads on to be. You look at it and it says “Hughes FAMILY Farms”. Just words to someone who passes our semi or tractor on the road, but WOW! If you only knew…
Let me share a bit with you about what our FAMILY FARM is all about.
Wikipedia defines a family farm as this: A family farm is a farm owned and operated by a family. Like other family businesses and real estate, ownership often passes to the next generation by inheritance. It is the basic unit of the mostly agricultural economy of much of human history and continues to be so in developing nations.
Yes, this is true, but, on the same token, it is not. Whaaaa?
Some family farms are truly passed down from generation to generation, but that is not the normal case these days. At least around these parts.
The first part is true: We are a family farm that is owned and operated by family, however, we don’t own majority of the land we farm. We cash rent it or share crop lease most of our acres. (We will explore this more in a later blog). Let’s get more to the heart of the matter for now.
We Are A Family Farm
The Hughes Family
My father-in-law started farming back in the 70’s as a first generation farmer. I vividly remember my mother-in-law telling the story of when Bob told his Dad that he was going to be a farmer. How his dad laughed at him, and said it would never work! But that didn’t stop him. He marched his happy behind right up the the bank and signed those papers on “The 80 south of town” and never looked back! It’s amazing how that simple signature has grown to mean so much!
When my husband was 15 he rented his first farm. You can bet your butt his Dad didn’t laugh at him. And just like his father, he has grown his name into a legacy as well.
Bob, (my FIL) and my husband farm apart, together.
?? Confused ??
Bob has his own farms that he owns and rents and his equipment, and Lincoln has farms that he owns and rents and his own equipment. They each do their own thing, only they help each other. EVERYDAY! Father and son working side by side, day in and day out. And now our sons are stepping up to the plate as well.
Combined we farm about 8000 acres across 4 counties. And, we farm it all with the utmost respect for the land and he people we farm for.
Our little farm has grown to employ 11 people, and provides means for 6 families!
The In-Laws, Bob and Sue
Lincoln and I and our 3 boys.
My Brother-in-law Doug works as our mechanic
Taylor, Lincoln’s adopted brother (Taylor is a hoot btw. I will save some of his wisdom for another blog)
(Sorry, No picture)
Waylon, Lincoln’s best friend/ brother by another mother, whom he calls mom as well.
(Again, No picture)
Alfy- The new guy. Not related
(Once again, No picture)
Our oldest, Cody-15
Our nephew, Trenton-14
The neighbor kid, Colten-16 (He’s the one on the far left)
And Brock-16. One of my other sons.
Most every day these 11 work together in one way or another and they have the BEST time doing it!
You would think working with that many family members would be a disaster; it is anything but!
We have the most amazing time learning from each other, making jokes, pulling pranks, arguing, competing, inventing, the list goes on and on….
The crazy thing is, even if they are not our “blood” realitive, they become family.
We are so blessed to be able to work along side each other, and it makes my heart so very proud when I see my children, their father, and his father all working together in one field. Not many families could do that day in and day out for years on end.
So next time you see the words, “Family Farm”, I hope you will know that they are not just words, but that there is actually a FAMILY behind the paint or stickers that you see.
In our case the Family Farm is: A family that farms together: Father, Son, Grandson, Husband, Wife, Best Friend, Adopted Brother, Brother-In-Law, Nephew, Neighbor Kid, and The New Guy.
I am more than proud to see our fleet parade up and down the back roads of our county, sporting Hughes Family Farms on the hoods and doors.
Such a small detail, but what great pride it has brought to my heart!
Thanks for reading. I’d love to hear about your farm!