wheat harvest 2016 nearly here

IMG_1474Miss Nora showing us one of her many talents.

There has been a lot of activity within the household! Graduation was on May 14 and it’s already June 6.

Because the wheat harvest journey was next to happen, that’s what was focused on after the graduation party was cleaned up.  And speaking of the graduation party, I’d like to thank everyone who came. Everything turned out nice, including the weather – just enough chilly to enjoy the awesome fire pit Jim and Mark built.

And speaking of the fire pit, I tried really hard to convince Jim we should just keep it in the driveway as it was. Of course, he didn’t agree with me. So, we moved the rocks to the backyard where the oil barrel was. We’ll get to enjoy a much smaller version of it now – another thank you to you, Mark!

Two weeks ago, Jim and Callie made the first trip down with Frank and the service pickup. I know it was a trip that Callie looked forward to since she wasn’t going to make the harvest journey. The problem with the trip, though, was how quick it was. They left on Sunday (22nd) and was back home at 2:30 am on Tuesday (24th). No “lolly gagging” involved!

IMG_1477Frank and the Service Truck making the first trip to Texas.


a255f7f6-b4b3-4519-85d0-43d82f98abc7Photo credit goes to Callie. These are the pictures she took while she was in Texas.

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I think I heard something move by my feet, Dad!

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1b59085b-859d-4821-991f-0ba808f9bb6bPalo Duro Canyon

2831ddf8-b2e3-4994-b332-909393d3f975On Wednesday (25th), Callie and I had an appointment at UNO (University of Nebraska Omaha) for orientation. It was a full day of information, a tour and good food from the cafeteria.  I really feel like she made the right choice for her college experience! I’m so excited for her.

IMG_1502She’s officially a Mav!

The rest of the week was spent either helping Jamie pack, watching Eli and Nora or packing the Cottage on Wheels. The packing for me was much simpler this year. I didn’t have near as much to haul out since Jamie and Curt would be moving in as soon as we were moving out. Regardless, there was a whole heap of packing going on. Jamie and Curt were supposed to be out of their house on the 31st. Jim had given me the deadline for leaving on the 31st, as well. Jamie and I knew we both had to have houses packed up by then.




IMG_1525I was able to get the majority of mine done before Jamie and Curt moved into our house. This gave her empty drawers and cupboards to use for her stuff. Taylor’s old bedroom was converted to Eli and Nora’s room. It was almost fun giving them the space to take over knowing that meant they would be in our home. The gift I received was not leaving on the 31st, after all. Jim and I have to have a goal to shoot for but it seems he always gives me a day or two beyond. This time, I got until Thursday (2nd).


IMG_1556Memorial Day gathering.



IMG_1466I had a couple of mornings to wake up to the kiddos and have coffee with Jamie before we headed south. I just can’t explain how wonderful it was having them there with us and they didn’t have to leave. I know the whole move into Tombine Ga & Papa’s house is confusing to Eli & Nora but it sure was fun to have them around to play with!


IMG_1529My little helper!


IMG_1482Even got in a couple of Brooklyn and Jillian’s ballgames before we took off.



IMG_1371We didn’t get out of the driveway until almost noon. It just got to the point where we had to go. We had to leave the house and leave the stress getting ready for harvest creates.

We made it as far as Hays, Kansas the first night. Jim opted to spend the night in Hotel Pete. I decided it would just be easier to join him in there than to move everything off the bed to sleep in the Cottage. I was so tired, I could have slept on the ground and never had an issue with it.

IMG_1635Hays, KS

The next morning, we grabbed a quick cup of coffee at McDonald’s and we were off. The next stop was Greensburg, Kansas.

IMG_1643Liebenthal, KS – This church is made from post rock.

IMG_1649It gives me a weird feeling being in some of these harvest towns – those that I spent time in over the last 42 years. This is La Crosse, KS

Since the girls didn’t come this year, the job of writing for the High Plains Journal All Aboard Wheat Harvest program is up to me. We are hosting “Combine Cam” again this summer. The stop in Greensburg was to allow Grant with Kiowa County Media Center to install the equipment needed to make it all work. I took the time to visit with Dana and Tracy. Mark & Dana used to be harvesters, as well. Their kids and our kids grew up on the road together. Jamie was Tracy’s maid of honor in her wedding and they still enjoy a close friendship although there are many miles between them. It seems most of our friendships include many miles between us. My grandparents always talked highly about their harvest friends…now I understand why!

IMG_1669Grant & Cassie of Kiowa County Media Center installing Combine Cam.


efc3d0a2-10ca-4383-9a02-84cff0d7ccf5Me and Dana

c5354a86-cfc7-4428-ac6c-0abb3bd21628Me and Tracy

We had lunch together. It felt like it hadn’t been several years since we’d seen each other. It felt like only yesterday. And then we got back in our vehicles and continued south.


IMG_1676We made it to Claude about 7:30 on Friday evening. We sat up camp and called it a day. Unfortunately, the trailer park only had spots with no sewer. A disappointment at first but knew we would get along just fine.





When the farmer realized that we didn’t have sewer hookups, he insisted we move the Cottage to a yard where a vacant house was sitting. So, we packed her up and moved her down the road. This is much better! Quieter and just nice to be in the country. The only issue we had was in order to make the Cottage level, the front jacks were extended way more than we were comfortable with. So, another trip was made to Amarillo and lumber was purchased. Jim had an idea of how to create a much firmer foundation in case of a large wind. I must say, he did a fine job!!




This is slowly beginning to feel like home. I miss the kids and am anxious to get to work. We’re hoping to sample on Thursday. The weather forecast is hot and dry for the next several days…keep your fingers crossed for us!

IMG_1735Jamie recently sent me this picture of the kiddos. 




5 comments on “wheat harvest 2016 nearly here

  1. Dave Jordan says:

    Always enjoy your reports. With Jamie moving into your house, is the temporary while you are out on harvest run or something more permanent?

    • Nebraska Wheatie says:

      Oh…I guess I didn’t explain that very well, did I? They are in the process of having a new house built and they sold their other one. It worked out just perfectly for them to be able to move in while we moved out. I probably should write another post explaining that. 🙂

  2. Erica Brown says:

    I know those late nights all too well. Glad you made it and are settled! Not sure how I missed the combine cam last year. What a great project!

    • Nebraska Wheatie says:

      It was fun last year but it just seemed like with cell service, it wasn’t on as often as we would have liked. Hopefully, this year will be better – hopefully.

  3. Tom Stegmeier says:

    Tracy .as always super pics & a great commentary.Eli &Nora tooo cute. Glad to see the Z Crew made it safe &sound ,did your grampa ever cut in the Claude area .What is the space in the elevators like ,will the wheat be piled on the ground or is it going to be some long hauls. May the Harvest Gods be with you & booking for raincation is hard to get.

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