Now that the tillage and fertilizer activities have concluded, you would think life around the farm would be a little slower. But in reality we have been very busy. Our main activity has been hauling corn to both the Illinois River terminals located in Beardstown as well as the rail terminal in Waverly. Annually we sell a large amount of corn in the month of December. We do this to help cash flow, but most importantly we move grain during December because rarely is the Illinois River froze. As we get into January and February the river can sometimes freeze and carry large chunks of ice down from the north. This creates havoc for the barge freight and often even though you can deliver it to the terminal, they have no way to move it down the river because barges can not be moved.
We have also been busy cleaning up the remainder of fall machinery and catching up on year end book work. December also seems to be the "meeting" season as we have been attending numerous marketing seminars and also the pre end of the year appointments with the accountants. Earlier in the week we attended 1st Farm Credit Service's annual Outlook seminar in Peoria and listen to both Dr. David Kohl from Virginia Tech and Dr. Steve Johnson from Iowa State. Their presentations were very thought provoking, but unfortunately both centered around the financial ciaos in Europe and other events throughout the world that are currently affecting our commodity market. We also learned about new crop insurance changes as well as a few new crop insurance products for 2012.
No snow has been seen in our area yet, but they are forecasting an inch for this evening. The soils are still dry in our immediate area with no tiles running. We would welcome rain to help recharge the soils as we go into winter. By "re-charging" the soils with water during the late fall and winter months it helps to ensure a good start to the next year's growing season.