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From the monthly archives:

April, 2018

I’m a Mother, Farmer and a Nurse and I Care about the Food I Grow

By Janet McCabe, Cook County Farmer As a child, I never imagined that I’d be responsible for raising high-quality, healthy food products that feed my family and yours. I grew up in Mt. Prospect, a northwest suburb.  My sister and I didn't even mow the lawn, instead we played with other kids in the neighborhood and were active in the youth group at our church.  During college breaks, I first worked in an office and then as a certified nursing assistant before earning my Bachelor of Science in Nursing.  I met my future husband during my freshman year of college.  His sister and I were on the same dorm floor and six-years later we were married.  On the weekends, I’d go back to Orland Park to his family farm.  Orland Park at that time was still fairly rural.  He’d let me ride in the tractor or combine with him, but he wasn’t quite ready to hand over the steering wheel. After we were married, we started to farm together.  I started by going to ...

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Spring Planter Workshops for Members Offered at Member Greenhouses this April!

New Planter Workshops offered this Spring at Great Member Greenhouses!  Spring Planter Workshop at Big John’s Farm Market & Greenhouses for members and guests on:  Saturday, April 21, 2018 at 10 AM - Fee:  $30.00. 1754 E. Joe Orr Road, Chicago Heights IL. Class size limited to 20.   Make a spring planter with other Farm Bureau members to display on your porch, patio or balcony area while learning planting tips and tricks from the experts. Your planter will sure to be the envy of neighbors.                                                                                                                                            & ...

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Let’s Talk About the Ag on Your Plate

  I’m a mom and I care about what I’m feeding my kids.  How do I learn more about today’s farmer and the food they grow?  Answered by Amy Hansmann, urban mom and Cook County Farm Bureau® volunteer Years ago, as a mom of a young son with another on the way, I began to wonder about the food I fed my family.  We lived on the 40th floor of a downtown high-rise and walked everywhere.  It was easy to shop at any number of stores, grab milk from the Starbucks and a lot of fun to go to the weekend farmer’s markets.  Because of the topics in the media, the playground conversation and even the labels on food I began to worry about the choices I made- not so much about nutrition, but about food safety, environmental impact and animal welfare. In my urban landscape, far removed from where my food was produced, it seemed best to follow the trends and assume that what the media and my acquaintances were telling me was true: organic was better, conventional food is ...

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Manifolds, Manolos & Manure...by Bona Heinsohn

This weekend after a fundraiser, my aunt presented my three-year-old with a beautiful centerpiece complete with tinsel, ribbons, and foil.  It’s lovely… for a one-dollar centerpiece.  Defying all logic, my loud big-little boy named it “my precious” and carries it around.  It sheds leaves at will.  His cat, “Xanadau,” eats the leaves and pukes.  Then I walk in the puke. This is the same little boy who visits a pet store and after petting the bunnies is more interested in the water filtration system on the aquariums and the wheels on the hamster cages than seeing the cats, ferrets, or gerbils. This, of course, is done all while wearing one of four John Deere sweatshirts with his tape measure on his belt.  (Fortunately, he’s not allowed to take his screwdrivers in public.) His sister on the other hand still spends hours at pet stores.  Hours.  Despite her love of all things fuzzy she usually spends most of her time with the amph ...

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Downwind by Bob Rohrer, CAE, FBCM, Manager

Downwind By Bob Rohrer According to Google, there are more than 270 billion emails sent each day on this planet. Google did not report how many of those emails were spam or reply all. Sometimes I feel like most of those emails land in my inbox. Unfortunately, I can’t just let all of those emails live in cyberspace. I feel the need to print emails to actually read them. If I ever go paperless, the wood and paper industry will go into recession. One such email I received (and printed) was from the U.S. Census Field Division.  Because I printed it, I was able to find it to write this column. The email was a news release that provided projected “populations” in the United States and the world for New Year’s Day 2018.  The main message I pulled from the Census Bureau update… The Population in the World is exploding! Panic! (Don’t panic…  I added the panic part) The world population projection in January was for 4.3 births every second with 1 ...

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