Every year about this time, I love to write about memories of the fall harvest season. When I was a kid we started with a one row pull-type picker that we used to pull behind the Farmall M. We then moved up to a two row picker that we mounted on the old Co-Op E5. That was the picker that took my Dad’s middle finger at the second knuckle, on his right hand, when he tried to pull a stalk of corn out of the gathering chain when it was running. Of course, back in the day almost all the old farmers were missing a finger or two from some new farming machine. My Dad used to tell my city cousins that a cow bit it off. They were pretty cautious for a while around the cows until they figured out he was joking. Anyway, after the two row mounted picker, we bought a used 303 International Harvester combine which really sped things up because there wasn’t all the hooking and unhooking of wagons to the picker like before. The next combine we owned was a four row 715 International. Then we traded for a 915, followed by a six row 1460 International with rear wheel assist. Later we bought a 1480 as well, and we had two that we used in the 80’s and 90’s. Today they have two of the 70 series combines that really get the job done.

Back when I was a kid it took two or three months just to pick about 150 acres of corn. I remember sitting in school and thinking about my Dad out in the fields all day picking corn. As soon as school was out and we got home, we grabbed a couple fresh rolls and we raced out to the field to see how we could help. I loved hooking up wagons for my Dad, and then hopping up into the wagon and riding around the field while my older brothers hauled the loads. Later when I was older, I would haul the full wagons up to the corn crib and unload them. I think one of the most enjoyable experiences of the harvest these days is riding way up high in a modern day combine and taking out a large field in just a matter of an hour or two. It’s especially cool late at night, to be up in the cab with all those flood lights, lighting up half the field as if it was the middle of the day. When the weather is nice, most farmers these days will stay out in the field until late into the night. You have to make hay while the sun shines, so to speak .A couple times when I was working on the farm, we actually picked all night long, right up until the morning milking if we knew rain was coming. When I retire, I hope there’s a combine with my name on it somewhere.

Psalm 67:5-7 reads: Let the peoples praise You, O God; Let all the peoples praise You. Then the earth shall yield her increase; God, our own God, shall bless us, And all the ends of the earth shall fear Him.

The harvest is a good reminder of the blessings of God. Until next week, God Bless!