By Luella Fischer-Gregory
As a little girl, I remember counting tadpoles in a large mucky
puddle, as my Dad planted soybeans in a field nearby. My brother
and I stood on torn seats of an old Dodge farm truck, next to my
Mom, as we moved equipment and worked to accomplish as much as
possible to beat a rainy forecast and dark clouds. Little did I
know how those small moments would build the foundation of my
Growing up with a farmer as a father, you knew to hush when the
weather forecast came on, knew how to plan events around the
seasons and knew dinner time may be well past 9 p.m. Who knew most
families sat down to eat at 6?
I can still recall how proud I was in grade school when asked
what my parents did. I was so proud of my father's occupation,
because in my eyes, it was always and still remains an honorable
profession. His callused hands, patience and faith provided a true
road map for the years ahead, as I faced life's challenges and
obstacles. His common sense approach to life and work ethic
is a rarity and both are characteristics that define all farm
"Farming is having an abundance of faith and appreciation for
miracles," he would say, as he would take out his pocket knife and
dig beneath the soil surface, to see if the seedlings were
For all the miracles witnessed, we knew there are equal
challenges. I can recall the significance of waking up to rain
hitting the roof, even when I didn't fully understand the
consequences of drought or loss, for my father always
He always taught us that the measure of success is not defined
in monetary value, but in one's character and overall happiness in
life. He encouraged us to treat others fairly and with respect,
even when it may be difficult and to find our tribe, who encourages
and uplifts us.
Soon, I realized my tribe was a tribe of those who also shared
in a sincere love for agriculture. It became a passion of mine to
tell the story of my father, a farmer and the story of thousands of
farm families who work every day and make many sacrifices to
provide the food and fiber we depend upon.
With fewer and fewer on the farm, and a growing population, we
face many challenges ahead. Agriculture is under such scrutiny,
that at times it can be overwhelming. We know firsthand with the
passion, love and challenges that surround our lifestyle, it can be
hard to take the personal attacks and ongoing loads of
I often reflect on childhood memories with ones of deep
gratitude. I enjoy traveling to many new places, but it
is down an old dirt road where I like to hang my hat. A place I can
listen to the whippoorwills, see baby calves frolic in the sunshine
and a set of tractor lights after sunset. In a world gone crazy,
those involved in agriculture are right with my soul.
I feel as though my Dad set the bar high, for what I expected in
a relationship and in a husband. After growing up with a male
figure, whose hands were always callused and his boots always
muddy, I am not sure I could have been content with anything else.
I married a farmer, much like my Dad, in 2014. He, too, has a love
for agriculture, livestock and the land. My Dad and my husband
share a work ethic, a love of God's simple blessings and the kind
of personal sacrifice I hold dear to my heart.
Luella and her dad.
Luella grew up on a row crop farm in east central Missouri where
her family farmed corn, wheat, soybeans and had a few cows. She and
her husband own a farm in Northeast Missouri where they raise
cattle (cow/calf and stockers) as well as hay, milo, corn and
Luella loves the little things in agriculture that make up her
days. "I love how this experience gives us the ability to
appreciate life's simple gifts (a newborn calf, a much needed rain)
and helps others develop so many important characteristics and I
see the positive impact agriculture can have on people."
When Luella is not on the farm, she is leading a third grade
agriculture education program, where she teaches students about
planting a seed early on, in hopes that they learn to understand
and gain an appreciation for agriculture. She loves to advocate to
consumers to help them understand modern practices on family
She explains, "My love and passion for agriculture led me to my
current career, where I enjoy educating others and writing about
farm families and the everyday products they provide. I enjoy
connecting ingredients and recipes to agriculture, while also
inspiring others who live a similar lifestyle. I spend the majority
of my time educating young people, hoping to plant a seed, so they
can appreciate and understand how agriculture impacts their
everyday life. I think it's important to not only share the facts,
but to be relatable and share the characteristics and lifestyle of
what we do, while telling the story of passion and love. At the end
of the day, that is what it is all about.
I love this life and am thankful everyday I can be a part of the
most important industry in the world. I have always said, it isn't
an easy life, but it is such a good life."
Luella grew up on a farm in east central Missouri where
agriculture left a lasting impression. She farms with her
husband in Missouri, raising cattle and row crops. Luella
enjoys tying food and recipes to agriculture and the farm
families behind the ingredients. For more about her and her life on
the farm, check out her blog.