Friday, April 5, 2013

Tis the Season

Tis the season....not baseball season....greenhouse season!

This will be my 5th full time season at the greenhouse.  I have said it before and I will say it again, I love this job.  As much as I love this job it's bittersweet to know this will be my last season.  We are responsible for up to 24,000 tomato and vegetable trays, each tray has anywhere from 200-338 cells/seeds.....that is a heck of a lot of vegetable plants.  While it would not be impossible to be a successful greenhouse owner and have a family, it would be very very difficult.  Just this week the daycare called and I had to pick up my son early.  Matt was out of town, my mom and other family members were working, and Zach was sick so I had to go.  If this call came in May when it's warm and I'm the only one there to care for plants there is a chance I could kill off a greenhouse.  There would be far too many instances where I would pick my family over the farm and I would not be able to keep the quality of plants we do now.  It was a tough decision, but I know it was the right decision. 

Working hard for the money
To celebrate my upcoming retirement from the greenhouse business here are some of the most important lessons I've learned:
  1. Close your mouth when you work on something over your head.
  2. Always unplug something before you work on it, you will get shocked.
  3. It is ok to swear on the farm, but not in front of customers or at employees.  It is encouraged to swear at machinery that isn't working correctly or when you hurt yourself (both events happen daily, sometimes simultaneously).
  4. Fake it til you make it....always give it a shot before you ask for help...unless you're working with electricity (I was clearly shocked more than once).
  5. Write everything down...dates, details, lists, houses that are more likely to shock you, etc.
  6. Don't listen to the haters.  Everyone thought I was crazy for quitting my job to farm.  I have 2 college degrees I was putting on hold to follow my dreams and my heart down on the farm.  People talked, but I was the happiest I have ever been so it didn't bother me.  Be happy with yourself and be able to make fun of yourself...just be you.
Zach helping me figure out numbers last year
My 'lil mater' last year...he is huge now & I miss my short hair

I have learned so much more, but those are some universal rules anyone can apply.  You laugh now at the one about closing your mouth when working on something overhead, but I promise one mouthful of rust or metal shavings and you will never forget again.  He doesn't read this, but thank you to the best boss ever for teaching me about more than greenhouses.  I learned more about life and myself than I learned about tomatoes.  Thank you for taking a chance on me and I hope I made you proud.  I'm sorry I can't be the one to carry on the legacy....I'll write this in a card and give it to the boss man before the season is over.  

So, you probably still don't know what I do at the farm except shock myself.  That many plants are harder to grow than you may think but I wouldn't trade any of the blood, sweat, and even tears (lots and lots of tears during the pregnancy season) for the world.  I am also looking for a new life plan and open to suggestions :)

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