Kuehn Family Looks Forward to a New Season
It’s time to say farewell to summer and start preparing for the next season. The Kuehn family opens up their camper around the first of May each year and spends the summer months camping, boating and fishing. Labor Day is spent winterizing the boat and camper, so final preparations can get made for fall harvest.
“I was raised a city girl, so I really didn’t understand farming until I met my husband more than 20 years ago. I married a third-generation farmer, and I’ve learned to appreciate what farmers do. I’m so proud of my husband because he puts so much care into raising crops and cattle,” says Wendy Kuehn, who recently sold her Lavish Salon & Spa but continues to work there full-time as a cosmetologist.
Now that Wendy isn’t responsible for the day-to-day management of her own business, she’s putting extra energy into helping Mike grow their Latham® Seed dealership. They’ve logged many hours this summer, putting up field signs and checking the crops.
Mike says he appreciate the way Latham Hi-Tech Seeds looks for ways to bring families together at company events. He also really likes the quality of Latham brand soybeans.
“We’ve had quality issues for years with other companies, so I can appreciate Latham’s quality,” says Mike. “I’m impressed with how quickly the Latham corn emerged. It was looking really good until it got hailed on, but it got good regrowth on it.”
You can follow along with Kuehn Seeds on Facebook. Wendy says she and Mike enjoy promoting family-owned Latham Hi-Tech Seeds because the company shares many of their same values. Just as Mike is a third-generation farmer, the third generation of Lathams is managing their seed business. The Lathams encourage their dealers to bring their families to company events because they, too, appreciate the importance of faith, family and farming.
The Kuehns two teenage daughters enjoyed attending Latham Seeds’ annual dealer meeting, which was in early July held near Des Moines, Iowa.
“My daughters and I love to go to the city for dinner and shopping, but we enjoy the peacefulness of living in the country,” says Wendy. “I like the privacy of living in the country. I also love that our girls are being raised next to their grandparents. We live across the road from Mike’s parents, and that’s where we keep our cattle. When our girls were little, they’d go over to their grandparents and help Mike feed the cattle.”
Now that their daughters are in high school, they’re busy with school and extracurricular activities. Brianna is a senior at Lakeview High School. She enjoys drawing caricatures and plans to attend college for animation. Bailey, a sophomore, enjoys painting watercolors and cheerleading. Bailey was voted Varsity football cheer captain as a freshman and is serving again as captain this fall. In addition, Bailey is captain of the JV dance line.
“Mike and I are proud that are girls follow their hearts. They’re in their element when they’re doing theatre, dancing or drawing,” says Wendy.
Both girls are on the trap team, and Mike serves as assistant coach for their teams. Brianna participates in both fall and spring trap, earning a varsity letter. Bailey participate in spring trap. During the summer months, Mike and Brianna shoot sporting clays.
Trap shooting is an extremely popular sport in Minnesota. More than 330 high school teams, including more than 8,300 student athletes, participated in the 2019 Trap Shooting Championship held June 10-18 at the Alexandria Shooting Park in Alexandria. The Lakeview Booster Club donated funds, so members of the local high school’s trap team could attend.
Hunting is also a family tradition. Mike and his father have been deer hunting in Wyoming for the past 30 years. Mike’s dad and his cousin started taking hunting trips out west in the 1950s. Now it’s an annual outing for them, Mike’s brother-in-law and his sons, as well as a slew of cousins.
Mike’s ability to rough-it prompted he and his pastor to embark on a wilderness experience two years ago led by Duke Edwards of Pinedale, Wyoming. A “super minimalist survival expert,” Edwards has appeared on National Geographic Channel’s “Mygrations” program He also is pastor of Wilderness Church.
Mike and five others joined Duke Edwards on a hike six miles into the mountains with only the clothes on their backs and a knife.
“We made our shelters. We caught grouse by hand. We ate chipmunk that we caught in a deadfall trap. We were hoping to catch fish and tried making a fish trap with paracord in 40-degree water, but that didn’t work too well. We made bows and arrows. We made our own shelter,” says Mike.
Two large fires caused the group to abort their survival mission a day early as the forest had to be evacuated, but adapting to change isn’t anything new for the Kuehns or most farmers.
Farmers must adjust to an ever-changing industry. Mike’s dad had a cow-calf operation. Then about 10 years ago, their neighbor had three Maine-Anjou steers that he didn’t want to haul away. That was the begin of their Maine-Anjou enterprise, and Mike continues to direct-sell freezer beef.
“I enjoy the freedom of farming and like being able to set my schedule,” says Mike, who got a degree in aviation mechanics. He worked in the aviation industry for a few years before leaving to become a chemical applicator. He was glad for the opportunity to come home and farm because it has allowed him to spend more time with his daughters and to attend their activities.”
With the busy fall harvest season upon us, the Kuehn family is sharing with us a couple of their favorite meals.
- 1 box of uncooked “oven ready” lasagna noodles
- 1 large can/jar of spaghetti sauce/marinara sauce (We use the Garden Vegetable flavor.)
- 2 pounds of hamburger, brown & drained
- 2 bags of Shredded cheeses of choice
- After you cook the hamburger, start with a layer of hamburger on the bottom of the crockpot.
- Then layer the meat, uncooked noodles and cheese & sauce.
- Make as many layers as possible.
- Then top with cheese and cook on low for 4 hours. Delicious!
This is a fast, easy recipe for the moms on the go!
For traditional family gatherings, my grandmother, my mother and myself make rice hot dish. “It’s my favorite dish,” says Wendy. “This hot dish tastes so good on a cold night.”
Wendy’s Favorite Hot Dish
- 1 to 2 pounds of hamburger, brown & drained
- 1 bunch of celery, chopped
- 1 box Minute Rice (measure to portion size of your family)
- 1 fresh onion, chopped
- 2 small cans Cream of Mushroom soup
- ½ tsp. pepper
- Add a small amount of milk with your soup cans (approximately ½ cup)
- Brown the hamburger; drain.
- Add the chopped onion and the rice.
- While rice is cooking, add chopped celery and salt and pepper.
- Then add cream of mushroom soup.
- Cook for 20 to 30 minutes on low/medium heat, stirring occasionally. Cook until the celery has just a small little crunch to it and the rice is cooked. Enjoy!