Joe is talking to some LED light salesman. Just around the corner, my brother’s co-worker is trying to make the next construction sale. Neighbors are comparing the latest cow brushes. This can only mean one thing in Sioux Falls, South Dakota — it’s the Central Plains Dairy Expo.
It is really strange within the business of taking care of cows, that your best friends are your competitors. Everybody is in the business of producing milk; everybody is trying to be better than the next guy. We all can glean information not only from salespeople, but more importantly from a fellow farmer. There is nothing more convincing for a farmer than having a fellow farmer endorse a product. It’s just an interesting dynamic.
And the event is BIG!
It always starts on a Tuesday night with a country concert. This year it featured Craig Morgan. Free food and a free concert = people show up.
Then, early the next morning we began with a Prayer Breakfast. It is certainly a feature of the show. The music was by House of Aaron out of Mountain Lake, MN. Wow!! They were inspiring to say the very least. The keynote speaker of the event related his work within the poultry side of things and using his business to do mission work in Africa.
The trade show went on all day with various break-out sessions. Most people went out to eat last night in groups hosted by various companies and enjoyed some time to visit. Most of us laughed way too late into the night. Joe and I remembered this morning that we definitely aren’t 22 any more.
Nearly every year, we have brought our kids. This year, Joe’s Aunt Sue was coming to town anyway, and we decided to take in the event today without them. Joe was back home most of the day yesterday and took Violet farming in the morning so I could attend the Prayer Breakfast. Lots of coordinating but totally worth it. Today, visiting with all the vendors is more important than usual as we have a big building project this summer and need to make some decisions regarding all the different parts.
We had a blast and learned so much that our heads are spinning. Dairy farmers are such a passionate group of people and LOVE to connect with others about what is going on in their barns and their homes. I was often in tears as so many people asked me how Ava’s arm is doing. Here’s the scoop:
She’s making progress! Her only movements so far are really just shoulder things. She can HUG WITH BOTH ARMS in a way if she is willing to show off. That is a joy to see!! We are 8 months post-surgery and the hope was for some elbow function to occur around 9 months. So please pray for that. An inch a month with nerve growth can seem so very slow but we just take things a day at a time. I am really realizing now that I need to do an entire post on just what her therapy is like so that will be coming soon.
Hope you enjoyed the photos!