Growing our Generation: Faith and family

Nick and Macy Staggs are editors of the Jan. 30 Growing our Generation e-newsletter, featuring insights and ideas directly from Ohio’s young farmers and food and agricultural professionals.

We are Nick and Macy Staggs of Adams County. We have two precious kids Brooklyn, 5 , and Hayes 2 . Nick is the operations manager at Jackson Ag Service, which custom applicates fertilizer and chemicals, has a full-service feed mill and sell Becks Hybrids seed. I am a data analyst at Cantrell Oil in Winchester and finishing up my last two months in AgriPOWER class VIII. I am a trustee on the Adams County Farm Bureau board and recently started a Young Ag Professionals group in the county.

Aside from working at the mill and Cantrell’s, we co-own and operate a corn, soybean and cow/calf farm. The herd is in the process of transferring from registered Shorthorns to commercial Angus/Simmental. Because of working full time, the selection of low birth weight bulls has been key to maintain a good calf crop. We truly love and respect agriculture and love to see where God takes us next.

Life of the feed business and farming
Since the feed mill is a family owned business, sometimes it requires everyone else to jump in, too. During the busiest seasons there is no time to complain but get things done. Nick will work long hours at the mill, yet come home to farm until late at night, then get up and do it all over again. Growing up on a farm it’s so easy to understand his motivation and passion for agriculture which drives me to work right alongside him. Our kids have never been strangers to the farm life and have been right there with us no matter what task needs done. I’m so thankful that we have a feed store family that has been there to watch our babies grow.

Faith and farming
Ecclesiastes 3:1-4 says: “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
A time to be born and a time to die,
A time to plant and a time to uproot,
A time to kill and a time to heal,
A time to tear down and a time to build,
A time to weep and a time to laugh.”

This is one of my favorite Bible verses, and to me this is farming. When Nick and I first got married there was a well-known couple who farmed in the community. Nick would go to the husband for farming advice and I ran to the wife for advice on how to get Nick to let me help on the farm. Going from my dad’s way of farming, to Nick’s, I’m not sure he trusted me. But, one thing for sure God always had a plan for us, our farm and how we would build it from the ground up. No one ever said “Living in the country was simple” and thank goodness that it isn’t. The rewards of working so hard to produce a crop or watching a momma cow give birth to a calf on a crisp spring morning cannot be put into words. Our faith is everything to us and we are thankful God saw it fit to allow us to be good stewards of the land.

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This e-newsletter is brought to you by Ohio Farm Bureau’s Young Ag Professionals. Learn more about Farm Bureau membership, including a discounted category for those 18-24 years old.