When my dad passed away when I was a senior, that had a lot to do with me realizing sooner rather than later that farming was my passion, that I wanted to be farming the rest of my life. When I think of my dad, I think perfectionist, and he wanted to make sure everything got done right the first time. so he said, “Amy, just take your time,” You don’t do it for the money, it’s definitely for the passion, and the love of the animals and the land. I learned right away I had to get up early, because I learned something new every single day. I realized I loved animals as a little girl, and sure enough, I started milking on my own when I was twelve. It’s nice when you grow up on a farm, but it was still a huge adjustment when I bought it and I had all the last decisions to make. I realized I was still lacking in many areas. I did not grow up with the heavy machinery and how to grow good crops. At first I got really down on myself, so I did end up going back to school. at Madison Area Technical College in Reedsburg. With organic farming you always have to ask yourself “Why?” “Why are the weeds coming out of the ground?” You have to ask yourself, “Why did that cow get sick?” “Just because”, isn’t a good enough answer for me. The part that I love about organic farming is the freedom that it allows me. You’re your own boss, you have to be very self-motivated, though. No one’s going to be there to push you. I definitely wear a lot of hats. I am a problem solver above all else. ‘Cause every day there’s some small victory and I’m like,you know what? I went out of my box and I did this today, I wonder what else I can do? Those small victories help you to keep going and wonder what else you can learn, ’cause you’re never done learning. It doesn’t matter how old I am, I hope I’m never done learning. And that’s the kind of farmer I want to be. I’m Amy Raboine, and I am your Organic Valley farmer.