A million and some more…

An Odometer constantly rolls forward as you travel down the road….

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     I am absolutely positive I am not the only one who watches their Odometer creep up as you travel down the road… Some may call it a distraction, but to me it’s a reminder. A reminder of the minutes we spend in our lifetime, on the road. Not just on the interstates, or back roads, but on the road of life. We spend each moment of our life chasing a never ending dream. Constantly pursuing higher levels of life. To some it seems as though its a race, but is it?

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     I spend the majority of my time traveling, to and from shows and events, or just trying to make it to the closest Walmart (which is an hour away in Kansas or Oklahoma… haha). Giving me plenty of thinking/Car Karaoke time. Life is a seamlessly never ending adventure, or well, that’s how we live it. Do we take moments for granted? All the time. Do we ever make up for lost time? Never, our clocks are always ticking. How do we make the best of our time? That’s for you to decide. I have recently come to the conclusion that I am missing out on certain events in life, simply because I choose not to pay attention to them. I place larger “events” or “happenings” ahead of those I don’t realize might have more significance (whether it be sentimental value, or anything else), if I would just open my eyes to them. We live in a world full of “instant”, “high speed”, or “never ending”. Everything is at our finger tips, every little thing. So much so that when we take ourselves out of our “comfort zone” we realize just how “immediate” our lives are.

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     Do I want to just live day to day missing opportunities, picking and choosing my livelihood, and what I think is best for me? Or do I want to allow God to make his move, to help me make mine? When will I become tired of trying to force the upper hand to God, all because I think I know what is best? Do I get so caught up in what I think my life should look like that I am missing opportunities God is placing right before my very eyes? Ecclesiastes 3:11 says:

     “He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.”

 

Rushing around to catch this life that I thought I was supposed to be living, is absolutely ridiculous. I feel like I am not appreciating the life that God has planned and mapped out for me. What am I saying with all of this? “Sierra, it is time to get out of the fast lane…” I’m not saying that I am stepping out of this lifestyle that I love, but I am going to slow down, appreciate the good life that God has blessed me with. Tuesday I found out I have pneumonia, something I definitely was not expecting. I came home on Wednesday, right in the middle of our “Fall Run”, on my four and a half hour drive I decided it was the quietest my car has ever been…. I found myself emotional, upset, and just flat mad that I would allow myself to get this sick… Then I realized, “This has happened for a reason”. I truly believe God has been telling me to wake up for quite sometime, and I just kept pushing it off, putting my head down and pushing forward.

 

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So here is to bed rest, time spent healing the damage I have done to my lungs, all the fluids in the world, and of course antibiotic that I am not a fan of. It’s time to heal, reflect and slow down. It will be awhile before I am able to watch the miles passing endlessly on my odometer, sing as loudly as I please to my favorite songs, and spend hours on end behind a camera. So I will leave you with this… Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire. I promise, the outcome will be so much more than you ever expected…

-Sierra

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P.S. Enjoy the images, a few are from around home, the rest are from different places I’ve traveled 🙂

#LifeWithSierra

An insight to my life, and family history…

 

     My life is a never ending road chasing white lines, perfect lighting and good livestock. Until recently have I come to terms with my place in the Livestock Industry, and I guess you could say it may surprise you. I am a 5th generation cattle farmer and rancher. Being raised in the Texas Panhandle on my grandfathers Hereford ranch you could say I am nothing short of blessed. I was raised in the passenger seat of an old feed truck on cold winter mornings, in the stands at cattle shows all across the country, and on the road to many sales, or livestock events. If one of my relatives would have chosen a small path different, I wouldn’t be where I am today, because of their love and relentless passion for pursuing this lifestyle.

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     What exactly is this lifestyle, you may ask? It’s the early mornings and late nights, long miles, cold wintery days, blistering hot days. It’s nursing baby calves back to health, or shedding a tear when you lose one. This lifestyle is full of misfortune, and yet wonderful happenings all at the same time. We witness new life, almost daily, and in the same day will witness the closing of a life. We are the first to take a brow beating from PETA, or HSUS for what we stand for, but in all reality do they truly realize how much we care for our livestock?

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     My Great-Great Grandfather lived along the Volga River, in Russia, in a small German community. In the early 1900’s they boarded a ship looking for greater opportunity in America. As they landed in New York City, they found themselves on a train to Wisconsin, which eventually led them to Shattuck, Oklahoma, and then to Lipscomb County, Texas in 1915. Lipscomb County has been our home for all of these years, ever since their arrival. They began to run Hereford cows, through the droughts they were able to withstand the deadly conditions, and make it through. In the years to come they became prominent Hereford Breeders in the region, hosting many sales, raising many champions, and most importantly developing a path for future generations to follow. As it has turned out both great-great grandpa Alex Born and great grandpa Harry Born have been inducted into the Texas Hereford Hall of Fame.

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     The trials and tribulations my relatives experienced have become something I cherish, something for us to look back on. Their stories of hardships have taught us exactly where we come from, what brought us here, and why we continue to battle to preserve this life we love, so dearly. I am a livestock photographer, I guess you could say I fell into it naturally. Loving both livestock and cameras, it is what I was meant to do. Capturing moments for generations to look back on so that they too can relive the stories of times passed, just like I have. Going back through old family scrapbooks always brings so many emotions back for me. I love seeing the backdrop photos from all over the country, the photos of old sales, and events my family would host, or even the photos of harvest, the fields of gold, and the combines of a lot different size than those we have today. What made those days so different from today? I’d say it’s a variety of things, the work ethic was different then, a dollar meant more than we realize it does today, and the American Farmer and Rancher were appreciated for what they are.

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     Today, our Farmers and Ranchers are overlooked, and pushed to the bottom of the totem pole. They aren’t appreciated for their 12 hour days, for the food they bring to everyones tables, or for being a constant in American History. American Farmers face rapidly growing populations, quick changing markets, and constant resistance toward their practices. How do we bring America back to a place of love for these hard working men, women, and families? It’s not too easy I am afraid. The average age of the American Farmer is growing as the years pass by. These up and coming generations are finding their places else where, not that its a bad thing, but something I often question. As to if we, as decedents of American Farmers and Ranchers have made the right choice in veering from the fields, tractors, and combines. I guess that answer will never truly be answered.

     I leave you with this thought…. What have we as young Agriculturists done to help promote our passion, and livelihood in the past 24 hours? What can we do to better our Industry in the days, months and years to come?

-Sierra