Growing up on my dad’s farm was very special for me—especially because of the experiences I shared with my twin sister. Partners in crime since the day we were born, Emmie and I did everything from raising 4–H calves to running a business. Everything we were able to do was p only because of the unique place where we grew up.
Raising 4–H calves taught me two things: first, about finances and, second, about the strong motivation of having your best friend as your competitor.
When I was 14 I bought my first calf in the fall and showed her in the spring. During that time, I kept a record book of my time and expenses and found out qu
ickly that producing a profit required much more effort than I initially expected.
However, Emmie was experiencing the same issues as I was, and doing the work together was much more fun. Show day was always exciting because we got to see our hard work pay off, plus we usually showed against each other, making us more competitive. No matter what happened we would always celebrate together at the end, which was the best part.
Running our egg business together was a whole different story. As with the 4–H calves we worked together, but instead of being competitors we were partners
Our older sister Jessica started the
business, and we bought it from her before she left for college. Emmie and I started out at around 12 years old with our own chickens and moved up from there. I liked this setup because it taught me a lot about finance, much like 4–H, but it also taught me a lot about people.
Like Jessica, Emmie and I had an “egg route” downtown where we delivered to customers on a weekly basis. I loved getting to know our custom
hile meeting new people as well. As our business grew we were able to sell all our eggs at the roadside stand and supply our dad’s community-supported agriculture and other farmers’ CSAs with eggs, too. This helped us dramatically with learning time management because delivery took up so much time. But having Emmie run the business with me made it seem less like a job and more like a hobby.
In the fall of 2012 Emmie and I went to college. Our dad ran our chicken business for us through October, after which we sold all the chickens.
During asparagus season this year we will be buying new pullets and selling eggs at the roadside stand and to our father’s CSA. We plan on doing this every summer during our college years.
Savannah and Emmie (Emmalyn) Snead are the twin college freshmen daughters of Caroline County farm couple Emmett and Ellen Snead. Savannah attends North Carolina State University in Raleigh, N.C., and Emmie is at Randolph College in Lynchburg.