GFB members share what they're thankful for
By Jay Stone
With Thanksgiving this week, we reached out to a handful of GFB members around the state and asked them what they’re thankful for. Here’s what they had to say. From all of us at GFB to all of you, have a safe, healthy and happy Thanksgiving!
GFB PRESIDENT GERALD LONG
First and foremost, I’m thankful that I’m a Christian, and thankful that God watches over and protects us. I’m thankful for my family because there’s no way I could be up here doing the job as president of Georgia Farm Bureau without the support of my family back home, working on the farms. I’ve got so much to be thankful for. My health. I’m so thankful for that.
When we look around, we see many people that are not as fortunate as we are. There’s a lot of people right now, not only the coronavirus and the effect it has had on really the whole world. It doesn’t matter what profession you’re in right now. It’s all had an effect on all of us. Of course, I’m thankful that my family and I have been spared from the coronavirus so far.
But just thankful to be in a nation that we live in. I know we’ve got a lot of issues facing us. A lot of political issues that some of us don’t all agree with. But at the end of the day, we still know we can go lay our heads down at night and get a peaceful night’s rest.
I’m thankful that we have something to eat, pretty much 24/7. Any time we want to eat, we can eat. As you look around and see … I know we’ve got some in this country that go to bed every night hungry, but [the availability of food] I am so thankful for.
I am so thankful for this organization, for the opportunity that I’ve had to serve as president of this organization. I’m thankful for the support that I’ve had not only from the board, but from the employees of this organization, just to be able to speak to them each day and see that attitude that they have, to be thankful to work for a company like we all work for and enjoy what we’re doing.
GFB State Women’s Committee Chairwoman
When I think about Thanksgiving, I think about slowing down. A lot of people are hesitant to love this time of year. The time changes and the days are shorter, that’s hard. But as a farm wife, I’m thankful for the shorter days because that means more quality time with my husband inside and with our whole family together. It’s a different perspective on a farmer seeing the time change.
The one positive thing that’s kept me going is we have a Savior who never changes. He’s the same today, tomorrow and any other time. He never changes, He’s always there for us, the promises remain the same and the hope in tomorrow comes directly from that.
State Young Farmers & Ranchers Chairman
There are a lot of things to be thankful for, even in the worst of times. Some of those things for me that have probably stood out more this year than years when things are better and you’re busy, you just kind of go back to the basics. Your family and friends. We’ve had more time to spend with them this year and made connections that maybe had fallen apart. There’s been more time away from the noise of everyday life to spend with one-on-one relationships with people. That really, the older I get, the more things I see, the more value, more importance I see in relationships and how it can help me and can help others.
Still with all the craziness going on, I’m thankful that I’m living in the greatest country in the world, and all the opportunities that are afforded to us on a daily basis. Whether we like the current political environment or not, we are still afforded a lot of things that most humans across the globe don’t get. You have to remember and be thankful for those simple things. A lot of the problems that we want to get bogged down in are first-world problems and not third-world problems. You’ve really got to put it in perspective sometimes.
Technology and associations and federations that are willing to change and adapt and use technology to still reach out to folks, and still try to serve the purposes, to help the No. 1 industry here in Georgia, agriculture. I think if you look at 2020, the brightest shining star you can find is how COVID impacted agriculture and especially direct-to-consumer agriculture and being able to play a part in that or be a player in that game has been a phenomenal ride this year for me. That’s something I’m also thankful for.
JOHN DOUGLAS NEWTON
Like a lot of people, I’m thankful for my family, my health, and to be able to farm and continue that tradition in our family.
I’ve had a best friend and his wife, she just lost her dad a couple of days ago due to the virus. Their family has experienced three losses this year. She lost an uncle and a grandmother and her father this year. I guess just kind of being at the funeral and realizing how thankful we are to be here and to live another day. It kind of brought back some memories of when my father passed when I was young. Even though I didn’t really know him, it was kind of like wow, I’m thankful for the mother that I had and my brother, just kind of made the world seem really small.
All the things I worry about as far as, you know are you going to gather enough crop to pay our bills? We worry about this, and it just made the world seem really insignificant as far as the stuff we think about. The stuff I was fussing about the day before, it was like, wow, why was I even worried about that? It made no significance into the greater meaning of living.
STEPHANIE MINTER ADAMEK
As we go into Thanksgiving I am incredibly thankful for all of our health up to this point.
I’m thankful for the opportunity to open up and sell trees and work with my family on a daily basis, even if we do sometimes fuss at each other about some of our chores that we have. But I’m grateful to have a job to be able to work outside and just be able to work with my family. Not many people get to do that. It’s nice to have that opportunity. One of my cousins said something about that when we were talking before, that it’s a whole different ballgame when it’s your family, your lifeblood, where you grew up, everything. It’s just nice to be able to share that with other folks, as well.
We’ve noticed, just talking to other farmers that were open for things in the fall, too, that they had busy years this year. We did sunflowers this year and it was really nice to be able to have something different than just produce. The Christmas trees are something that no matter how much work we all put into it, every single one of us have been out here at work, my mom, my dad and myself out here side-by-side working together to get these things done. It’s nice to see it all come together and have people appreciate it. I know a lot of people don’t fully grasp the time that goes into some of this stuff, but I’m grateful to teach them that, too.
It’s nice to have something to go to every day that I want to go to.