Last weekend Molly and I took a quick trip to Texas for my cousin's wedding. It was a chilly, blustery day, but a beautiful ceremony surrounded by friends and family. Molly and I are both from Illinois and we don't get home often enough. I come from a large family. My Dad is one of 8 children. I have very fond memories of when I was younger, playing with my cousins on the farm. We were a very close family growing up. I have 18 cousins and 7 Aunts and Uncles, so it was a busy, crowded house especially around the holidays. We were all back together for this one weekend aside from my brother in law and one cousin who couldn't make the trip. Being together with everyone again even for a short time brings up a lot of emotion and makes me think about getting back home more often.
Molly and I usually travel separately, so there is someone home to watch over everything. For this trip, we were fortunate enough to have the help of a friend with farm chores over the weekend and even one extra morning when we were stuck in Dallas. Whether it's the dogs, horses, or farm chores; It's not often that we're both away together as there's always something keeping us home. When you stop and think about that philosophy for a minute, it makes no sense. Why would I not want to travel with my wife? Travel with my family? My to do list is always long and never ending, but it will always be there. We can always come up with an excuse of why we need to stay home or why we're not able to take vacations, but when it all comes down to it, that's all it really is. An excuse. It comes down to simply planning for it. Just as we plan our grazing, budgets, business planning. We will plan for vacations and time away. Put the right people in place to care for things while we're away and just go.
I always had the same reasoning when I was cooking, too. It's easy for that mentality to become engrained in your mind that you just can't take time off. I used to feel guilty about taking time off, always thinking about the work I've left behind or the work that needs to be done.
We live on an incredible planet and we should all be sure we make the most of our time here. We love being where we are, we love working hard, we love farming. But, we also love to spend time together as a family away from the farm to renovate and rejuvenate our mind and soul. In the end, we'll all be better for it. I hope we can all be so lucky to find the balance of a successful, gratifying career paired with a quality of life that allows us to explore, expand, and learn about every nook and cranny that we're able to experience on this planet.