What are you thankful for?


Every year around this time, I start thinking it’s time to reflect. Reflect on the last year, the good, the not-so-great, and most of all — what I’m thankful for.

I have started this more than a handful of times over the course of the last couple of days. So, I’ve turned on my favourite writing song (Hear You Me, by Jimmy Eat World, in case anyone was wondering), moved out of my office space, and am sitting on my deck in what has got to be one of the nicest falls in a long time. As always, nature seems to remind me of the bigger picture.

I’m incredibly thankful for colleagues that almost always — even when meetings can be tough, and there are serious issues at hand to discuss — make me laugh at least once a day. I’ve said it over and over, but laughing is so underrated. It slows things down. I am not a medical expert, but there’s got to be some research somewhere that shows what laughing does to our breathing patterns and oxygen levels. For me, laughing is like that moment when you pull into your driveway, shut your vehicle off, and finish singing that song that was blaring on the radio. It’s a brief moment of clarity in our hectic lives.

As always, I’m thankful for family, near and far. I’m thankful to have such a plethora of things to take care of — a yard, cats, dogs, goats, sheep, and a donkey named Goose — alongside my ever-supportive partner, Braydon.

This thanksgiving, I challenge you to think about what you are thankful for. I did the same for my colleagues — see what they had to say, below. Have a safe and fruitful thanksgiving, all!

– Kara Oosterhuis, field editor

“I’m thankful for thoughtful family and friends, the opportunity to watch our daughters grow up, a meaningful way to make a living, and Blue Jays’ playoff baseball.”

– Kelvin Heppner, field editor

“This fall was new for our family, as our three kids are in three schools. My oldest started high school, and I am thankful that the change has gone so well. She’s joined the rugby team and loves it. My son has made a good friend who helps him with his spelling, and he helps them with their math. My youngest is thriving in her second year of school. I can’t fully express how comforting it is to see your kids doing well.

I’m also thankful for a stretch of dry fall weather to get our late-seeded hay rolled up before freeze-up. Related: I’m grateful for my community of farming friends who have helped us get this feed put up for winter. If the sheep could be grateful, I bet they would be.”

– Lyndsey Smith, field editor

“Going through some major health problems in the last 24 months has made me realize one thing.  I am thankful for TIME!

  • Time with my family
  • Time with my new and old friends
  • Time with work and colleagues
  • Time with my pets

Tomorrow is never guaranteed and I try and make the most out of everyday with every interaction I might have with my wife, my kids, my dad, sister, colleagues, friends and strangers.”

– Brad Martin, sales lead

“I am always thankful for my fantastic coworkers and the great team we make; I have the best job in the world, and the people I work with are a huge part of that. I’m also thankful for my cozy home and amazing yard; even though it’s easy to see all the outside work that NEEDS to be done, it’s pretty amazing to take a step back and look at the beauty I’m surrounded by as well. Mostly I’m thankful for my family – my husband, parents, and siblings – and this year especially, for the incredible gift we’ve been given of a new nephew joining us through adoption.”

– Christianna Bach, sales coordinator and executive assistant

“Smiles, hugs, handshakes and back slaps. Please beware you will receive one or all next time you see me. Give thanks and cherish the time you have with family and friends.”

– Bernard Tobin, field editor

“I am thankful for a family I truly love, for the change in seasons even though I hate the lack of green, I realize it probably helps me love spring and summer that much more. I’m thankful for the fact that as long as you’re breathing you can learn, change and grow. I’m thankful for the ability to be creative on almost a daily basis. I’m thankful for good music, good food and the company of good friends.”

– Jason Stroeve, content production lead

“I am thankful for sweet corn and maple syrup. Life is GOOD! I am thankful for all the people that have, and continue to support what I do. So many people say “Thanks for what you do for ag.” I could not do it without their support, and it’s awesome that they see value in it! I am thankful every day for the amazing world of agriculture that I get to be a part of. Nothing is more challenging, more fun, or more innovative. From the people to the science, I am living the dream!”

– Peter Johnson, resident agronomist


“I’m thankful for my fiancé, family and friends for their support, encouragement and unconditional love. I am thankful for good health, a garden for fresh produce, loving animals, and having a great job that allows me to stay connected in the agricultural community! I am also thankful for the harvest season from the weather to the yields and how well my calves have developed this summer.”

– Paige Holmquist, social media lead


I am definitely thankful for many things as we approach my favourite holiday of the year.  Thanksgiving is about a celebration of harvest and all of the hard work and dedication exhibited by farmers and ranchers to produce the food we get to enjoy.

I am also thankful for my family as they support each other and chase their own dreams individually at the same time.  A strong supportive family assists through the great times and most importantly the rough times.

I cannot say enough about the team at RealAgriculture and their commitment to communicating the story of agriculture to farmers across Canada and the U.S.

One of the great spin offs of Canadian thanksgiving is the start of MLB playoffs and it will be great to see Canadians rally around supporting the Toronto Blue Jays in what hopefully is a long playoff run.

Enjoy this weekend everyone.

– Shaun Haney, founder, RealAgriculture






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