Skip to main content
Farm Fresh Forensics
rss feedour twitterour facebook page
site map
Latest Posts

Farm Fresh Blog

Monday, March 28 2016

There's nothing quite like tax time to make you realize how much money you spend to keep a farm going. Sometimes you make money. Sometimes you lose money. Sometimes you have to spend money up front and don't see the payoff for a year or two, or more, or never on some things. Sometimes you can diversify and discover your time and talents are better spent in another direction. You're still ranching, but your products are different. You prune things, but the tree of the ranch keeps growing.

I was having this discussion with a friend yesterday. As at least one member of every farming family should be, she leans heavily toward the business mindset. Other Half is the business end of our ranching family. The Business End expects to see a profit. The sooner, the better. The bigger, the better. They heavily factor in not only the cost of maintaining a farm, but the effort of maintaining a farm.

It is here that I have to point out that if we factor 'time and effort' into ranching, then it's far better to live in a subdivision and work a 9 to 5er where you have nights and weekends off. You can just pop over to Kroger's for your groceries. You have 1.5 dogs. You are free as a bird to participate in the hobbies of your choice. You are free to travel anywhere at any time.  If the bottom line is about time and money, ranching is not for you, not as a lifestyle, not even as a hobby.

If you have a ranch you can't enjoy a lot of things. A ranch is like a giant child. There's pain and joy, and you get some tax deductions, but it's an awful lot of trouble. Only you can determine if it's worth it. How much of your life do you want to spend shoveling poop and looking at the genitals of farm animals?

Is the financial cost worth it?  The blood, sweat, and tears? Is your life richer for it? Or is it a burden? Do you long for the finer things in life? Manicures? Nice clothes? Parties? Do you long to travel? To see the world? To experience life beyond the pasture? If so, perhaps farming isn't in your stars.

But if you can't imagine a life that doesn't involve picking up poop, hauling hay, and checking butts every night, even if it means scraping out a living with little or no free time or money, then maybe you have found your niche. Not all riches can be measured in the checkbook. If I make just enough money to pay the bills, but live to enjoy the sight of a newborn calf staggering toward her mother in the moonlight, who says I'm not rich?

Posted by: forensicfarmgirl AT 08:24 pm   |  Permalink   |  4 Comments  |  Email
You're very rich!
Posted by Patty on 03/28/2016 - 08:46 PM
Oh woman.... there are definitely two sides to that coin.... and I am having a hard time figuring out if my "boys" could or would adjust to the side of the coin that I would pick.... oh goodness....
Posted by Mindy on 03/28/2016 - 09:47 PM
I understand. I'm definitely blessed that even though Robby is business-minded, he feels the same way I do about ranching.
Posted by Forensicfarmgirl on 03/28/2016 - 10:12 PM
Yes my Dear! You are very rich with what really matters in the long run! Lots of love,joy, happiness and beauty!
Posted by Danna on 03/29/2016 - 07:13 PM

Post comment
Email Address

(max 750 characters)
* Required Fields
Note: All comments are subject to approval. Your comment will not appear until it has been approved.

Red Feather Ranch, Failte Gate Farm

© 2009-2019, Farm Fresh Forenics, Forensicfarmgirl, Failte Gate Farm, Red Feather Ranch All Rights Reserved.

rss feedour twitterour facebook page