Fun Stuff

by James Banahan

by James Banahan

I’m not actually here today. I’m in South Dakota, on a nice little family vacation.

I know, I know. You’re thinking, “When isn’t he on vacation?” Ha, ha. But look: Here I am on vacation writing an article. Also known as working.

But that’s far from the point I’m wanting to make today. In fact, I’m headed in the opposite direction, amigos. Today’s article is about fun.

We’re on a road trip. It’s easy to talk about the work that a road trip takes: the planning, the driving, the coordinating. My little boy wants to swim, little girl wants to play mini-golf; the pool opens at noon, course closes at 3—not to mention that nothing on that list is particularly exciting to me, it’s enough to make me go a little Clark Griswald.

But. Have you been mini-golfing lately with a six year old? Because it is fantastic, especially when the ball finally rolls through that windmill. Or swimming with a three year old? Also fantastic, though I’m a bit red from a belly flop too many. Whatever. The point is that the work was worth it. Well worth it, actually.

The past weeks and months have been unkind to us. Parts of our region have suffered flooding. Parts had a less than stellar wheat crop. Parts have been so excessively wet that planting was delayed and weed control has been near impossible. Like a good road trip, it’s so easy to focus on the work this stuff has caused us. That’s fine. The problem comes when we dwell on the work to the exclusion of the fun stuff, the big payoff we get once the work is done.

soybeans-greenLike how amazing our corn and milo fields look right now. Even our toughest fields are looking pretty out of this world. Do you remember the last time it looked like this?

I’ve been reminded of something on this vacation: we tend to forget about the fun stuff and that’s no good. We lose perspective on the work then, and it’s a drag. My kids very clearly get this and I’m taking a page from their book here: we need to focus on the fun stuff—like that phenomenal feeling you get when you pick phenomenal corn, or get into some really great beans or milo. That’s the stuff that we need never to forget. Pride, accomplishment, achievement, relief.

Just like a good road trip, it’s not so much about the bumps along the way, but rather the awesome end result. That’s the perspective I’m taking to get us all home, and it’s one I hope that you’ll adopt as well, especially because it’s coming to us very soon.