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Dear Agricultural Producer,

No one needs to tell you about the struggling farm economy and tight profit margins.  Dealing with these conditions takes a toll on a person and family members.  I encourage each of you to take time to care for your mental and emotional well-being throughout the year.  Maintain and strengthen family relationships and friendships.  Take time to discuss your worries and anxieties as well as your hopes with family, friends and trusted advisors.  Look for a couple of things each day that you are grateful for and name them aloud.  Take breaks from work to keep yourself refreshed.  Look for something humorous and enjoy a laugh, it’s true that laughter is good medicine.  Take time for reflection/meditation/prayer.  Eat nutritious meals.  Don’t forget to exercise and get enough sleep.  My wife tells me I should follow this advice as well!

This newsletter contains information about a number of programs and events scheduled over the upcoming winter months.  Some of these programs may provide needed information to help you in your agricultural operation and/or a social setting to enjoy some time and discussion with fellow farmers.  I hope you consider attending some of the programs.  If you have questions about any of the events/programs mentioned in this newsletter or if I can be of assistance in helping to answer a question, provide information or provide some educational programming, please contact me at the Wayne County Extension office by phone at 330-264-8722 or by email at  

Wayne County Extension is fortunate to have the support of the Daily Record newspaper that provides space weekly on its Tuesday Agriculture page for me to write an agriculture column and this provides yet another avenue for you to stay current on agricultural topics and upcoming events and programs.  Something new that started in the last quarter of 2017 and that will continue in 2018 is extra dairy radio programs on the WQKT Farm Hour broadcast.  Wayne County Extension will generally have two dairy topic radio programs each month in 2018, each about 10 minutes in length.  Let me know if you hear something useful, or if you have an idea for a topic.