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And then, after a crappy few days, you go to the NSAS Healthy Farms Conference and are re-inspired and reminded of why you do what you do! Friday and Saturday Jamie, Clara and I attended our second Healthy Farms Conference (Jamie and Clara could only stay for Friday though). And it was so rejuvenating. Last year, Jamie and I split up and covered 2/3 thirds of the concurrent sessions and learned a lot. This year, we spent more time in the hallways and in the banquet hall chatting with new and old acquaintances. It's such a small, welcoming group that it's like going to a family gathering (in a good way). It was such a great time and we still learned a lot. And if the subject matter and the people weren't enough, the conference was held at the beautiful Lied Lodge in Nebraska City. We left the conference ready to take on the world again. With new ideas and more ammunition to tell others (and sometimes ourselves) why it is we do what we do and why it matters to them.

I even had the opportunity to speak with an organic row crop farmer from my home town. He's the only one in the county (probably in a multi-county area) but it's great to know that he's doing it. Now I'm trying to introduce my younger brother into the wonderful world of organic/sustainable farming. He's conventional ag through and through so it'll take some time but I'd like to think that he might come to recognize it as a better way.

Of course, I can't finish this post without sharing the "cherry on top" of the conference. Jamie and I were awarded the Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society's Beginning Farmers of the Year Award.

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