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For more than 60 years, members of John Temme’s family have been milking cows on their dairy farm near Wayne, Neb. When John made the decision to return to the farm after college, his parents and grandparents were excited to have the fourth generation involved in the family business, but they also knew it would require careful planning, communications and investment.
For five generations, members of the Maassen family have been raising animals and crops on land near Maurice, Iowa. Although the farm looks very different now than when Lee Maassen’s great-grandfather began farming in the early 1900s, the family’s focus on caring for their cows, people and the environment has stayed constant over the decades.
Living on a farm is a busy lifestyle. Typical days begin before sun-up and end shortly after sun-down. Summer offers flexibility in this 24-7 schedule for dairy farm families. Days are still lengthy, but families enjoy more time for outdoor activities, working together to care for their animals, and family dinners at dinnertime (at least, more often). When August rolls around though, farmers begin preparing their family for a new routine and going back to school.
For Dorrich Dairy in Glenwood, Minnesota, innovation comes in the form of tiny wasp larvae. The six-legged insects may be small, but they’re having a huge impact controlling the farm’s fly population, improving cow comfort, minimizing the use of pesticides and reducing the 400-cow operation’s impact on the environment.
When it comes to family-friendly recipes, expert food blogger Johanna Cook, aka Momma Cuisine, has it covered. To learn more about where her ingredients come from, Johanna and her family left her kitchen and traveled to Lindale Holstein Farm in Hampshire, Illinois.
Newlyweds Chris and Adriane Heins joke that they are an 80-year-old couple in 20-something bodies. On top of running a 700-cow family dairy farm in Higginsville, Missouri, the couple tries to go out often on a date, such as driving into town, enjoying ice cream and each other’s company.
After the final bell rings, most high schoolers take off for an after school activity such as sports practice or debate. Senior Ben Rice, however, heads to the cafeteria to pick up a 55 gallon trash can full of that day’s food waste to take back to Prairieland Dairy, a dairy farm his family helps run.
The aroma of sweetness stemming from a Hutchinson, Kan., dairy farm would make anyone’s smile stretch. Fourth generation dairy farmers Orville and Mary Jane Miller share as much love together and they do with their dairy cows.