Some Things I Learned Very Young Growing Up on the Farm



Baby chicks smell good and feel funny when they walk on your hand.


Caterpillars don’t taste very good.  Box Elder bugs either…


If something tastes bad, spit it out.  Unless it’s spinach, then you have to eat it anyway.


Freshly mowed alfalfa smells really good.  Sweet clover in bloom does too.


Frogs can make a lot of noise at night.


Wasps can sting you more than once.


Animals and birds make more animals and birds by humping.  People too.


Dried cow patties can fly – sort of like a pie tin.  (This was before Frisbees…)


Dried corn silk doesn’t make a very good cigarette.


Hay mows (that’s pronounced like the “ou” in ouch… not like “oh”) are a great place to hang out with the neighbor girl.  OK, city slickers – a hay mow is the area on the upper floor of the barn where you store… yep, hay…


You can swim in the irrigation ditch.  (Irrigation ditch – a medium-sized ditch that is used to transport water from a lake or reservoir to farmers many miles away.)


Skinny dipping feels funny.


Ditch water tastes really bad.  (Think cows upstream…)


Hens can peck really hard when you’re trying to reach under them to gather their eggs.


Throwing eggs down a cistern (a place where water is stored) will make your Dad really mad.


You can kill a chicken with a BB gun.


Chickens are stupid.


When cows have to take a whiz, get the heck out of the way.


Some weeds make great spears (pretend type of course).


You can make a whistle from a willow branch.


Don’t be afraid to try to climb any tree.


You’ll probably never see a badger (a burrowing animal that makes big holes in the ground).


Dirt clod fights are fun – right up to the point where you get hit by a rock instead.


You can have horse apple fights too.


Chicken manure feels funny when it squishes between your toes.


Note:  OK, I know we have a bunch of references to creature discharges here, but this is a FARM remember?


You can eat all kinds of goodies right out of the garden.  Tomatoes, carrots, peas, radishes, lettuce… ummmmm


Some cats like warm milk squirted right from the cow.


Cats and dogs can like each other if they want.  Sometimes they’ll even sleep together.


Wet dogs smell bad.  Wet barnyards don’t smell so great either.  Hen houses in August smell awful.


If you don’t scrape your boots and take them off before you go in the house, Mom will holler at you.


Chickens are dumb.


Caps with ear flaps are good in the winter.  Mittens too.


Snow drifts are fun to tunnel into. 


Hot chocolate tastes great on a winter night.


Jack Frost makes really neat designs on windows.


It’s OK to suck on icicles.


You can’t sit long on a frosty outhouse seat.


If you have to go bad enough, you can pee your name in the snow.


Don’t eat the yellow snow.


You can burn corncobs in the old kitchen stove instead of coal if you want.  (Hey, this was a loooooong time ago… if you hadn’t guessed by the “outhouse seat” comment.)


Breakfast cooking smells can wake you up.


It’s OK to get really, really dirty.  It’ll always wash off…


In the summer, you can take a shower outside with a garden hose.


Your dog will always be happy to see you.


Sometimes the things you love most die.


You can kill moths by holding a bowl of kerosene under the kitchen light.  (Moths will be attracted to the light and zip right into the kerosene.)


Lightning likes tall metal structures.  (That would be the windmill about 30 yards from the house.)


If you’re close to the lightning strike, you can hear it sizzle.


Pigs are smarter than you’d think.


Chickens are dumber than you’d think.


Don’t touch electric fences.


Mom’s home-made sweet pickles were delicious.


Greenish colored clouds and no breeze at all means troubles acomin’.  (It’s a bad weather thing…)


Tornadoes going overhead are really noisy.


Train whistles off in the distance sound really cool.


Mulberries are good right off the tree, but they’re awfully messy – especially after they’ve passed through a bird.


Skunks are sort of pretty, but they can stink up the neighborhood – or a dog - real quick.


Don’t run over a dead skunk in the road.


It’s hard to hang onto a garter (garden) snake.


You can use a long garden hose like a telephone.


Dried alfalfa leaves down the back of your shirt is super itchy.


Chiggers bite a lot – especially under the elastic of your underwear.


Don’t run down rows of tall growing corn.  (The leaves hurt…)


There are more stars in the night sky than you could ever count.


Coyotes sometimes talk to each other in the evening.


Lightning bugs are fun to catch.


And… oh yeah, chickens aren’t real bright…



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