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Hometown: Urbana, Mo.

Family: Husband Zach; children, Harper and Evey; parents, Robert and Regina Blair; and mother-in-law Gayla Obley

In Town: Kristen Obley has been a nurse for nine years, working at Citizens Memorial Hospital in Bolivar, Mo., for eight years.

“I recently took the utilization review manager position, so I deal with insurance most of the day now, but I’m still a nurse and do nursing things.”

In the Country: Kristen and her family live near Urbana, Mo. The family has an 80-head commercial cattle operation and 10 registered head.

“We are trying to build our show herd,” Kristen said. “Right now, we are transitioning into both commercial and registered Beefmaster. Zach tells me that in the next 10 years, he would like us to be up to around 30 registered Beefmasters.”

Daughters Harper and Everly also have their own show heifers. Harper will show a Shorthorn Plus, and Everly will pull a registered Hereford.

Kristen and Zach, who works in maintenance at Purina in Springfield, Mo., operate in a partnership with Zach’s mom, Gayla. Collectively, they have about 755 acres. .

Kristen was not raised around cattle or on a farm but has embraced being a “show mom.”

“It’s been a challenge. It took me a long time to be comfortable around the cattle, but helping Zach work the commercial cattle helped,” she said. “I started being more comfortable with them, then when we stepped into the show cattle. The first couple of years, we showed for Tracee Riley. I learned a lot from Tracee on how to handle cattle in a way we don’t with commercial cattle.”

The first bull Harper showed with Tracee, a Pinzgauer, is now running with the Obley’s commercial herd.

“Some of them don’t pack on a lot of weight, as far as the calves are concerned, so we put him out there in hoped to beef them up a little,” Kristen said. 

While Kristen may have not been raised on a farm, she is glad her girls are farm kids. 

“It makes me wish I was raised on a farm because they love it, and I love they love it,” Kristen said. “I cannot imagine raising them in town; they wouldn’t know what to do with themselves. I could never go back to living anywhere other than the middle of nowhere.”


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