Tag Archives: merry christmas

2022 Annual Burkholder Christmas letter

I read a quote from Jamie Finn the other day that seems to sum up what God has consistently placed on my heart in 2022. It pulls from 1Corinthians 13 where the Holy Spirit reminds us that love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things 😊

The quote goes like this, “Love doesn’t float downstream with the natural current of annoyances and provocations. It paddles hard, against the flow, toward forgiveness and understanding, toward charity and kindness.”

I remember when 1Corinthians 13 was read at Matt’s and my wedding more than 26 years ago. The scripture carries a message that has always been special to me, but it seems that God places it deeper within my heart with every year that passes. As our family prepares to close out 2022, I think of how we have been blessed with love. Jesus fills our hearts each day with the kind of love that perseveres, inspires, and strengthens regardless of circumstance. And, I am reminded of what a beautiful gift that is.

Ashley Grace graduated with honors from Notre Dame University in the spring of 2022 with majors in Political Science and Theology, and a minor in Public Service. Notre Dame gifted her with close friendships and good years as she navigated college life, and we are thankful for that! In June, she moved to an apartment in downtown Chicago as she prepared to teach 25 energetic 3rd and 4th graders at Grace Christian Academy in Little Village. Her days are filled with lots of little, needy hands and hearts as she inspires them to find purpose in knowledge and to love each other well. She has a great support system in Chicago with Luke and his family, as well as many Notre Dame friends.

Megan continues to pole vault her way through college at Davidson. She is a Physics major and reports that she is “going through her nerd phase”. She loves her track team, her Young Life group, FCA, and her fellow physics majors on campus. God blessed her with victory at the A10 Indoor Championships in 2022 and she flies higher over the bar with each season that passes. She spent another summer working at the K Bar Z ranch in Wyoming, and is truly blessed with a “2nd family” on the ranch. She has mentioned wanting to come home and farm after college, so we are hopeful that she will head back to the prairie in a few years.

Karyn is a senior in high school this year and will join the Corps of Cadets at Texas A & M University in the fall of 2023. In addition to the Corps, she plans to be a Forensic Science major in her time in Aggieland. She is very excited to head south for a few winters 😊 and reports that she will not miss the cold Nebraska wind! Karyn’s quiet strength and kindness is a constant source of inspiration for me. I got to coach her for the last time this fall in Cross Country, and watched God bless her with a 3rd place run in the 300 Hurdles at the Nebraska State Track and Field Championships last spring. She continues to be active in our church family, go on mission trip each summer to Mexico, and be on the One Act Performing Arts team at school.

Matt and I still work to tend to the family farm. I am consistently amazed at how talented he is at “leading the ship”. I love his heart for the land, the crew that he cares for deeply, and the savvy he brings to the family business. He serves on many local boards and also has a heart for our community. I am so very thankful to get to “do life with him”! We took a delayed 25th anniversary trip last winter to the Virgin Islands which was awesome! Matt still glides across the water like a teenager as he water skis and we love spending time at the lake each summer. This fall we were blessed to become foster parents to a sweet and amazing 7th grade daughter who I met through our church. Our house is a lively place!

I continue to volunteer with our student ministries team at church, coach swim team and cross country, substitute teach at the local middle school, and help Matt on the farm. I’ve circled back to my love of psychology as I’ve completed online classes to be trained as a Mental Health Coach. It is my hope that these classes will better equip me to love and support the kids that God brings into my life.

Our family wishes each of you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


Filed under Family, Wednesday Wisdom

The Burkholder Annual Christmas Letter: 23rd edition

The Burkholder Annual Christmas Letter: 23rd edition

In honor of our children beginning to reach the age of “adulting”, we asked them to contribute to the 2019 Christmas letter by composing their own Limerick poems.

Photo Credit: Katie Arndt Photography

Ashley Grace: Age 20, Sophomore Political Science major at Notre Dame – Servant heart, fluent in Spanish, and inspired to take on the world’s challenges in order to make a difference 🙂

Our girl has done well in South Bend

To many she’s been a good friend

She loves a tail-gate

Her grades have been great

Next year she’ll continue this trend

Megan Anne: Age 17, Senior at Cozad High School – Joyful heart, full of Holy Sass, 2019 Pole Vault Nebraska State Champ and enrolling at Davidson College in the fall of 2020 🙂

Turns out I’m a champion napper

I played a bartender that’s dapper

A science fanatic

And very sarcastic

Now that’s a very great capper

Karyn Allison: Age 15, Freshman at Cozad High School – Hamilton Musical and history lover, expert baker, math whiz, courageous athlete and kindhearted girl 🙂

I had to Rise Up to high school

Take My Shot and play it cool

Never back down

Learn to go a few rounds

And not be afraid to look like a fool

As for Matt and I, we continue to enjoy life on the Nebraska prairie. God blesses us daily, and we both look forward to another year loving and working alongside each other on the farm. We hope that the joy that Jesus Christ brings permeates your heart this Christmas and brings you hope for the New Year!


Filed under Family, General

Merry Christmas!

For those of you who do not receive our annual Christmas letter via snail mail — Year #22 🙂

If I were to think of a family “mantra” for 2018, it is that we learned to live by faith. 2018 was a year full of blessings and change for us as we packed our faith to live with God’s grace. In April, a young man who I had been tutoring at the high school needed a place to call home so Joseph joined the family. He is a brave soul – stepping into a house full of women – and Matt rejoiced as he lost his status of “only male” in the family!

About six weeks after Joseph joined us, Ashley Grace graduated from high school. We are still adjusting to having an “adult” child as Matt and I wonder daily how we could possibly be old enough to have a college student. Ashley Grace joined the Notre Dame community in August and loves her new role. In addition to school, she is interning with the Girls On The Run organization. She has the heart of servant – plans to major in Political Science – is well on her way to being bilingual – and has a long-term goal of using her talents to help others to find their voices. She brought home straight A’s during her first semester in the Fighting Irish family and we are tremendously proud of her kind heart and fierce discipline.

A week after Ashley Grace’s graduation, Megan pole vaulted her way to victory at the 2018 Nebraska State Track Meet bringing home the gold in addition to a new school record. It brought joy to my heart to watch her develop confidence as an athlete as she soared 11’2” through the air. She still has her sights set on beating her Dad’s pole vault PR so we’ll see what the future holds 🙂 She began her junior year in high school this fall, and takes every science class available with the plan of studying physics or engineering when it becomes her time to start college. Meg approaches life with the same passion that she brings to the athletic field, and packs her faith with a devotion that allows for an ever-present smile.

2018 marks the year that Karyn found her voice. My quiet, shy girl blossomed into a confident and eloquent young woman. She is currently mastering 8th grade, and finding leadership roles on the various athletic teams that she loves so much. I think that she would report that swim team is still her favorite, but basketball and track are likely not far behind. Karyn’s compassionate heart combined with her steadfast loyalty provided an important foundation for Joseph as he began a new life with us. I love to watch the two of them be brave together – facing challenges with God’s grace and a faith that reflects Jesus’ universal agape love. They both serve as an inspiration for me.

Joseph is a senior in high school this year. In addition to mastering the art of deftly handling sisters, he played football in the fall and is now immersed into wrestling season. Matt reports that we are tremendously blessed as a family, and he and I are both so grateful that what used to be a great 5 is now an awesome 6! We continue to farm in the Platte River Valley where Matt amazes me with his adept entrepreneurship skills. I still work for the Beef Marketing Group with a continued passion to improve cattle welfare in feedlots. In my spare time, I coach the Cozad Swim Team and am an assistant coach for the junior high and high school cross country teams. We hope that your travels will bring you across Nebraska on Interstate 80 and that you will stop and visit us!

In the meantime, we send blessings and smiles from our farm to your family!

Matt,   Anne,   Ashley Grace,  Joseph,  Megan, and  Karyn   




Filed under Family, General

Merry Christmas!


Christmas blessings from our family to yours. 

This holiday season — please take a moment to enjoy and appreciate your food — thank a farmer — and realize that together we are stronger 🙂


Filed under Family, General

Merry Christmas

A very Merry Christmas from our family to yours...

A very Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

The trees whisper softly… their message rolls off the hills.

Snow softly blankets the cold, still Earth.

The slightest sound… a Cardinal tweets its song to the sky.

The tan tips of corn stalks peek up… barely above the soft snow.

 White lumps huddle together on the edge of fields.

Mother Nature throws her best at the farmers of mid-Nebraska.

A crackling sound interrupts the peace.

A single buck darts across the Platte River… the ice under his hooves breaks.

He nimbly jumps to the other side.

A geyser shoots from the cracked ice.. suddenly the sleeping Platte is alive again.

A light glow on the eastern side announces the new day…

Rays of pink and gold shoot out from behind a cloud in every direction.

The buck raises his elegant head… his racks rustle the icicles on a nearby tree.

The slight jingle makes a soft sound… almost like a message from the angels singing above.

As the gold of the sunrise drifts away with the wing, its speed picks up…

People near and far can hear the whistling… almost as if the sun must be blown from the sky.

This day is cold but happy… many families gather together to decorate and bake.

Soon far and wide, the smell of ginger and Christmas treats floats throughout the air.

The sun outside is breaking through the clouds, glistening on the fresh snow.

This picture seems untouchable.

The warmth of the sun heats the Earth, for a little while.

Little animals come out to play in the white powder.

Birds wrestle in the bare trees, turkeys scrounge around for food.

The evergreens, yet white with snow…

Sway in the wind, their needles playing with the pine cones.

It is midday by now… the sun is high but weak.

The animals now return to their caves, tunnels, and burrows… seeking shelter from the white snow that has begun to fall, again.

 Everything is hiding… keeping warm.

When night begins to fall… the golden sun turns to pink.

The beautiful clouds reflect its radiance… the snow is still falling,

And looks like powder puffs on the horizon.

A brilliant day is done.

By: Megan Anne


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Happy Holidays from the Feed Yard Foodie Family!

Wishing you and your loved ones a blessed Christmas Season!

Wishing you and your loved ones a blessed Christmas Season!

Regular Feed Yard Foodie posts will begin again after the holidays.  I am excited to share some new things that we are doing at the feed yard to improve pre-harvest food safety measures, and to ensure that

Good is the Not the Enemy of Great on my farm!



Filed under Family, General

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Happy Holidays from our family to yours!

I would like to take a moment to thank each and every one of you for reading and following my blog.  The last eight months have been very rewarding for me, and I so appreciate your time and attention.  I hope that reading my posts has been as enlightening for you as writing them has been for me!  I am traveling with my family for Christmas so will be taking a couple of weeks off from blogging.  Regular Feed Yard Foodie posts will resume on Tuesday January 3rd.  I hope that each of you has a blessed holiday season surrounded by loved ones!


Filed under General