Ask FSA Andy about losing a spouse

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Hello Again,

As the holidays are upon us and the year draws to an end, things tend to get a little hectic. For those of you that don’t know my story, I was dealt a hand of cards 19 months ago that still hurts to write about.

Our family had breakfast together, my son went to school and I went to work. At lunch I received the call my husband had a heart attack. I was in Coshocton County at a meeting … I drove to a Columbus hospital and was told he had passed away.

That was the longest drive in my life. I was left with a farm that we had worked our tails off to build, 120 feeder cattle, 100 head ewes, 25 boar nannies, 100 acres of wheat, 125 acres corn, 200 acres of hay and 250 acres of beans.

Oh yes … did I mention I had a 12-year-old boy that idolized his dad. I knew I had to try to survive this farming thing until I knew if my boy would want the farm or not.

So I am being a farm girl. It’s not easy, I have learned all women need a good mechanic. But I’m sure my husband would be proud that his wife is giving it her all to raise our children the way we planned.

Health

I thought this would be a good time to offer a few suggestions for all our readers. Your health is very important to not only yourself, but to your spouse and family.

If you haven’t had a physical lately take my advice and go get one. If you haven’t thought about estate planning, January is the month to get that on the calendar too.

Will

A simple will doesn’t cost very much and it was one thing that we had done correctly. Talk to your family about your wishes if something happens to you or your spouse. I know this stuff is crazy for me to write about, but I deal with farmers every day and you all tend to procrastinate.

Records

So let’s start thinking about our FSA programs. Get your records in order:

As the year draws to a close many producers meet with landowners to pay rent and settle accounts, this is a great time to update leases and it will save time when you come in to the office for your ARC-PLC contract appointments.

Power of Attorney forms are also available if you prefer obtaining landowner signature’s only once.

This is also a time to get tax papers and production records organized.

Plan ahead

Pick up a 2017 calendar and make note of a few important dates for the year ahead:

  •  Jan. 2 — deadline to report honey and maple sap
  • Jan. 15 — deadline to report apples and grapes
  • Jan. 31 — deadline to file for LDP for wool and unshorn lamb pelts
  • March 31 — final loan availability date for small grains
  • May 31 — final loan availability date for corn and soybeans
  • July 15 — final day to report your corn and soybeans

As the girl behind the counter, I see farmers come and go everyday — you become family and I just want to keep you around a little longer. Take the time to take care of yourself and enjoy life.

Life is short, live it.

Wishing you a very Happy New Year!

That’s all for now,

FSA Andy

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