Innovative Livestock Services, Inc.
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Monday, December 12 2016 9:32 AM

Christmas Family Traditions

The Christmas seasons brings lots of family traditions.  Many of my fondest childhood memories stem from the month of December.  From decorating mom’s light blue kitchen cupboard doors with homemade green and red Christmas cutouts to opening gifts with aunts, uncles, and cousins Christmas Eve at Grandma’s house.  The family rule of always waiting until after Christmas supper to open gifts seemed almost unbearable!  Supper always occurred later than us kids wanted because Grandma had to milk cows and Dad had to make sure that our beef cows had fresh hay and water.

Christmas Magic & New Traditions

As an adult, Christmas comes alive to me through children.  The belief and hope that a child brings to the Christmas season creates the magic that warms the holiday.  Many of the traditions that I grew up with in Minnesota now happen on our ranch in Kansas.  Hours spent creating Christmas ornaments, cookies, and gingerbread houses as well as making homemade gifts for friends and family.

Winter  Winter Kids

When my children were very little, Clint (my husband) and I started a new tradition with an Elf on the shelf named Snowball.  He arrives for the season each year right after Thanksgiving and spends the month of December reporting to the North Pole each night to share tales of my kids’ antics with Santa.  Each morning he returns to a different place in the house and my trio race out of bed on the daily hunt to find Snowball.  His special Christmas magic is protected by the kids promise to never touch him.

The act of giving to others provides the true reason for the season.  As my kids get older, the mom in me wants to instill the tug in their hearts which inspires giving.  This year they will participate in Santa’s for Senior’s which enables them to bring joy to two senior citizens at the Good Samaritan Home. I look forward to watching them continue to discover their own role in weaving that special Christmas Magic.

The Tradition of Caring for Cattle

Winter chores form a unique kind of tradition on the ILS farms.  The colder temperatures and snow storms arrive to make caring for cattle a bit more challenging. 

Everything takes just a little bit longer in the winter due to the harshness of Mother Nature!  Being prepared provides an assurance that our animals can thrive despite the cold temperatures and storms.  Caring for our cattle sometimes comes ahead of family time as blizzards provide winter challenges that require constant work for our crews. 

It takes me back to those Christmas Eve moments when I waited excitedly for Grandma and Dad to return home from farm chores – They never seemed to get there early enough, but learning to wait taught me that caring for animals was an important priority. Blending farm traditions of learning with the excitement of other Christmas traditions of giving allows my four children to understand the true magic of Christmas. 


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Innovative Livestock Services, Inc.

Innovative Livestock Services

2006 Broadway Avenue
Great Bend, KS 67530

(620) 793-9200

4805 Vue du Lac
Manhattan, KS 66503

(785) 587-9700

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