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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The meaning of a word.

Are we really communicating effectively?

So, I, you, NCBA, breed associations, the dairy industry, etc., have all decided that we need to communicate with the consumer. Simple enough right? I keep on saying it's about telling your story.

But what if the listeners don't understand the language? Are we effectively getting our message across, probably not. This was first brought to my attention last spring. We had hired a local kid to help us with some video editing. Absolutely no agriculture experience, but a whiz on a computer. I am pretty sure he thought we were crazy that we spent that much time filming cows.

One day he we were talking about the things that he was learning from listening to all those interviews with cattlemen, that's when he said, "Everyone sure says producer or cattle producer lots," and he's right, and more importantly he didn't really know what producer meant. I say it all the time, but what does producer mean to a consumer - not much.

Kevin Murphy, makes some great points in his article, Losing the War of Words. He discusses how we have change the language from farmers and farming to producers and industry. (He gives some background info on how we even started using these terms in his article.)

This resonated with me:

"...the farmer’s use of “producer” restricts the flow of positive images and intimates that the value of a farmer runs only as deep as what he’s capable of producing. “Industry” conjures up images of big corporations, the cold steel exterior of a building, a nameless, faceless, ruthless blob with designs to take over the planet!"
and
"Traveling around the United States, I find one overall consensus: We need to put a face back on agriculture. Nothing is more faceless than the term "industry."


Murphy, is the creator of the TruthinFood website. I am a fan of his articles, and was very impressed with his first article Thou Shall Not Kill (Animals?)



Sneak Peak

It all goes live tomorrow...

I have been talking some this month about the national advertising campaign that my boss and I have been working on. This will be the first time the association is taking a multi-dimensional approach with their marketing. The campaign will be seen in print, online and television. Tomorrow will be the big unveiling! I am pretty excited that I have had the opportunity to be apart of this project. Not always do young, budding professional get to be involved at this level, and I am very grateful for that. So hear are the first two TV/Internet ad spots. Print ads to come tomorrow!





Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Things are moving forward!

100 posts later...

Last night I was looking through my blog and realize that yesterday I posted my 100th blog! Who knew that when I started this blog back in April that I would actually have people following me, crystal.cattle is becoming my own brand and I am gaining more confidence in my abilities. I have to also thank my sister, Robyn Beazley and Ariana - they were really the first blogs that I started reading and they inspired me to start my own!

In other exciting news - I am joing the Young Producers Council Cattle Call Blog. My intro post went up on Saturday and I will be apart of a team of young people that all represent some portion of the industry. Am all also going to be helping Robyn as she continues to grow her exciting business venture - Copper West. Say tuned, if you have liked the Fat Turquoise Crosses post or Now These are Boots - you are going to love this.

Thanks for all your support and comments and here is to the next 100 posts!


Monday, September 28, 2009

Great news - your pet can become a vegetarian too!

They won't stop at us and our kids, now they are after your dog and cat too!

Today I came across an article on the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences website, and I was shocked at what I found. The headline - Should Your Pet be a Vegetarian - quickly caught my attention.

My first reaction was do people honestly think about this kind of stuff, but to be truthful they probably do. Below is the first paragraph of the article.

There are so many human vegetarians that some of you may have wondered if your beloved four-legged friend is able to share the same passion and cause as you. If you have ever been interested in having your pet become a vegetarian it should be helpful to know the certain nutritional needs that your pet has, in order to make the right decision regarding vegetarianism.



The article goes on to say that it is OK for dogs to be vegetarians because they are "opportunistic carnivores" and only eat meat when it is available, it isn't a "necessity." Now if you own a cat, they need meat and a vegetarian diet isn't a healthy option for them, because they are true carnivore and can't fulfill certain nutrient requirements without meat protein.

I am all for tolerance. If you want to be a vegetarian, or your pet for that matter, I won't disagree with you as long as you have researched all the facts - and that doesn't mean getting one-sided information from animal rights activists. I am just really surprise that one of the most well know agriculture schools in the country would even suggest something like this. I guess they are no more immune to it than my alma mater.

All I can say is I think I am going to have a hamburger tonight, and give my roommates dog part of it!

Weekend Recap - Part 2

And this is how it ended.
So this morning I didn't have a chance to give you the conclusion to my weekend. When I arrived back home on Sunday from my great weekend of hanging out with our junior board and tailgating with friends, this is what I was greeter with.



I guess I wasn't surprised that the Green Jacket terrorists attacked our house. I mean R3 had warned me that this was a little bit of a tradition. R3 had most of it picked up when I had gotten back, but as you can see that Oak tree is really tall in our front yard, and someone had a pretty good arm on them! I guess I can't say I haven't been involved in any mischief before ;)!

It's about telling our story

And don't be fooled he isn't the only one that has this attitude.

This is just one video in a series that we finished up for the Colorado Beef Council. I love how Mark Frasier says the beef animal is a  wonderful creature, and I get the opportunity work with them and the industry they have created.



I'll be posting more of the videos here, but to have a sneak peak you can visit our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/apicreativemedia. Feel free to share any of these videos with your friends and family. We need more people to be spreading the message that farmers and ranchers are concerned with the environment and quality of care given to their livestock. The sad thing is for every video like this PETA or HSUS has ten others posted, trying to cast a negative light on our way of life.

Weekend Recap - Part 1

Bleeding Purple

After a big day on Friday and Saturday morning with the Junior Board I headed to Manhattan for the big game. Good friends Gabel, cgood, Graber and tbaugh were all in town and it was time to do some cheering and catching up. Although this was our fourth game and second home game it really only felt like the first official tailgate for me. Tbaugh's parents have an awesome tailgate, but they missed out on the first game. They certainly made up for it this time! Tbaugh's mom makes this awesome dip, I frequently claim it's the only reason I am friends with her ;). Gabel was in town on some work commitments which meant we had access to the Elanco tickets! Love it when my friends have the connection.



End Zone, third row up.




The game was awesome! We didn't play a real competitive team, but we still looked really good.


Only in Kansas can you find a shirt like this!

Friday, September 25, 2009

The Junior Board is in town.

This summer the National Junior Angus Board of Directors asked me to be their staff adviser. I was pretty honored and excited about the opportunity. It gives me a chance to work with 12 understanding individuals and Robin Ruff, the Junior Activities Director.

Today and tomorrow they will be in town for their September Board Meetings. It is really the first chance for the "new six" to get their feet wet and the returning six to set up their involvement in their officer roles. So far we have a new logo in place, a plan for a new scholarship and details on the 2010 LEAD conference. Should be an awesome couple of days!


He they are taking over the AAA, while our CEO is out of town on business. 


 You'll also to have to search National Junior Angus Association on Facebook and become a fan. This is another one of the communication goals that the junior board set, and has now completed.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Connecting with each other

I am going to backtrack here for a minute.

Now don't get me wrong, I am a huge believer in utilizing social media - facebook, YouTube, blogging, texting, Twitter (although I haven't set up my own account yet), for both business and personal purposes. On the business side, you can generate buzz, educate your clients and generate new customers. On the personal side, friends and families can stay in touch no matter where in the world you live. Lots of times I know who had a baby, who got engaged, who had champion heifer before my mom can even pick up the phone and tell me, because I have seen it via Internet.

But is this really a good thing?

What happened to the days that you had to make a point to stop, pick up the phone and give someone a call? Have we decided that posting on a blog or updating our Facebook status is a good enough way to stay in touch with our friends? This might show my age a little, but how often do you see a group of kids hanging out together, and no one is talking, they are all texting - maybe each other, maybe having a completely different conversation with another person. Now, I am guiltily - I'll send a text, especially if I just need a quick answer, or just want to send a little "I am thinking of you" to brighten someone's day. However, it is the sound of a voice I prefer to hear. It really is the only way I can pick up on the tone of excitement, stress or worry in someone's voice. In life's crazy, busy world maybe sometimes we just need to make time, no excuses, because you never no when life will change.

I am curious to hear your opinions on this. Post below, or you can even call me ;)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tough Enough to Wear Pink

Treasure your chest...

Back when I was at K-State I was part of a group called Collegiate Cattlewomen. We did a lot of agriculture awareness on campus and worked closely with the Kansas Beef Council. In the fall of 2006 I thought that it might be nice to do a little philanthrophy work. I had heard a lot of great things about Wrangler's Tough Enough to Wear Pink Breast Cancer awareness program, and thought why don't we do something K-State style. Collegiate Cattlewomen recruited Sigma Alpha, an agricultural sorority on campus, to help extended out audience. We sold shirts will the slogan, "Because great breasts are worth fighting for." Yeah, it stirred the pot a little bit with the teachers and staff, but that didn't stop us from raising $7,500 for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Our first year success shocked me, but I knew we had something special going on.  

The next year we continued our campaign. This year on the back of our hot pink shirts it said "Save the Ta Tas" - and we raised $9,800. That's me with our big pink check!

When I graduated from K-State I was a little worried about Tough Enough to Wear Pink, but the girls more than exceeded expectations. $11,000 was donated in 2008! "Hope for Hooters" was a huge success.

And now they are back at it again this year with - "Treasure Your Chest!" T-shirts will be on sale in the K-State Student Union October 6, 7 and 9th. You can also join that gals for a BBQ on Weber Lawn on Thursday, October 8th, and purchase your T-shirt there. T-shirts are $10. I know a lot of you reading this are from places other than K-State and you can participate too! T-shirts can be ordered through Tera Rooney - trooney@ksu.edu. Shirts will be shipped to you for $15. This year the goal is $13,000 and I know that can do it.

So think pink, and support a great cause!

A little bit of home...

This summer my family has been working on get one of our herdsires ready for the fall show season. My family raises Simmental cattle, back in Alberta, Canada. We have both reds and blacks, and dad has always taught me that strong cow families are the way to build a strong foundation to your herd.

Last spring mom and dad and Beechinor Bros. bought IPU Revolution172U from Labatte Simmentals. You can click here to see his full pedigree, he's out of what we like to think is a real strong cow family. Hopefully, we'll have some real crackerjack calves (that's what we call a good one) out of him come January.


Monday, September 21, 2009

Now these are boots!

Best thing I found at Kansas State Fair

I am back. Life gets busy. But I promise to have some great stuff this week!

Now I have to give complete credit to Katie Marston on this find, but when I saw these I knew I had to share them with you all (that right, I still don’t say ya’ll!)

As many of you probably noticed the patent leather trend began last year. We all saw it popping up in handbags and high-heeled shoes. I’ll be honest I wasn’t a big fan. Through my travels I also saw a few pairs of patent leather boots showing up. Now I am a huge fan on ostrich skin, so I didn’t know if patent leather was going to quite fit my style.

But... the more I think about it, the more I think I might want a pair. Especially after seeing these!




These boots are patent leathered tooled - now that's cool. Also, as R3, Tbaugh and I jumped from grassy patch to dry land, trying to keep our leather boots clean (it was a little muddy out!), Marston was able to just wipe her boots clean. I have the wost time trying to keep my boots looking good, I am a little hard on them, so I am thinking this might be a viable solution.


I also found this pair if you are wanting to go for a more simple look. I think these are the ones I would probably buy.


These ones are even on sale at Rods.com! 

This might be a fun option too.



You can find these Anderson Bean "winged tipped boots" here.

Happy shopping!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

And the winner is...

Only a little bit delayed.

So the CAB Conference has kept me a little busy, and I have been a little delayed in announcing the Show Text contest results.

And the winner is - Miss Jamie May! Thanks to all those who entered and look for some other contests in the future.

A quick update on the conference. Scottsdale has been great. The hotel is gorgeous, and the weather has been awesome. I have sat in on a lot of seminars that talk about the importance of quality and making a connection with the consumer - two ideas I strongly support. I also got to hear the previous CEO of Southwest, and Col. Tillman who was the Commander in Chief of Air Force One for President Bush speak. Col. Tillman told us what it was like flying President Bush around on September 11, it was pretty incredible to hear his story. I also had the opportunity to be apart of a Mexican rodeo last night - good times!

Hope you are enjoying your weekend, and I will be back on a more regular posting schedule next week!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Heading on out

... a little work, a little fun.

Today I am headed out for the Certified Angus Beef  Annual Conference, in Scottsdale, Arizona. I am pretty excited because of the people that I have talked to, that have taken in the conference, they all say it is one of the best industry events they have ever gone to. The participants will include a combination of packers, food distributors,  restaurant owners, meat cutters, grocery store reps, food service people, feedlot owners, chefs, farmers and ranchers - you get the point - pretty much anyone that is involved with the brand. My role will be the official photographer for the event, as well my boss and I will be doing a little video work as well. So that means I should have lots of photos for you when I return.

I'll be gone until Sunday, so in the meantime I hope you have a wonderful week. I would say its going to be a rather nice event by looking at the hotel photos! I also have some exciting news to share with you when I return about two new opportunities I am going to be involved with. And don't forgot the TheShowText.com giveaway, the deadline is tomorrow at 6:00 PM. Good luck!

The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa

Monday, September 14, 2009

Connecting with the consumer

It's the only way that we are going to be able to stay in business. 


Now if you are producer (farmer or rancher) you know the value of the products we raise. Whether is is being able to get 38% of your daily iron requirements from beef or just knowing that the products that we are consuming have been raised in environments where the land and animals are our number one priority. But, as we all know not everyone has the luxury to step foot on a farm, instead the rely on the media for their information, and more times than not receive one-sided arguments. So like any go business would, we need to do a better job of telling our story.

Today, I came across one farmer that is really trying to connect with consumers. Gilmer Dairy Farm, Alabama, has created an Edopt-a-Cow program. Now I don't know if he is the only one doing this, but I thought it was pretty unique and innovative. Through the Edopt-a-Cow program consumers get to adopt a cow on the Gilmer Dairy Farm. They receive a picture of their cow and a Certificate of Edoption. The adopter then receives information on there cow, like pedigree, pounds of milk produced, when they are going to calve, etc. What an awesome way for families, classrooms or even individuals to learn more about the dairy industry and feel a stronger connection to the farm. They also have a great blog that I like to check out.


Certified Angus Beef is also working harder to create a connection with consumers. Last week at our board meetings they rolled out the new consumer component of their website. Consumers can sort by state and learn more about an Angus producers in their area. Bios, photos and even some video is available. The consumer can actually see who is producing the product that they are putting on their tables each night or purchasing at a restaurant. (The Angus producers section has an awesome design!)

If we want to stay in business these are the things are going to need to be thinking about. If you are a consumer, we want to meet you and share the facts about our livelihoods with you.

______________________________________________

Monday morning excitement - there's even a prize involved.

The above title might be a little ironic.

A month ago I got a little curious as to who was reading this darn thing. I decided I needed some statistics. For as much as I hate calculating numbers I love looking at them. So, I decided to add something called Google analytics to my blog. You can't see it, but it tracks visitors, page views, time on the site, location etc. And all I can say is thank-you! In the last 30 days I have had more than 800 visits to the blog and more than 200 unique viewers.

So to celebrate I am giving away a little prize

TheShowText.com is one of my new favorite little ideas. Some Oklahoma State friends of mine (Kylee and Jon) started the business earlier this summer - and I am all about helping young people in this industry.

The idea is that for $20 per year you receive show results from state fairs, the majors - like the Royal, Louisville, junior nationals and other events. Sale results and reminders of when entries are due are also sent out. All these messages come across my phone via text message. And the even better thing is you can choose which states or breeds you want to receive results from so that your phone isn't overloaded with messages. This fall they are also going to be including judging results - I am a big nerd when it comes to finding out how my alma maters do at contests.

I always feel so smart when I can whip out my phone and rattle off the latest winnings or Express's sale average, and high sellers without even having been there.

Up for grabs is a one year subscription to theshowtext.com . All you have to do is a leave a comment below with your name. If you are still a little new to blog commenting you can choose the anonymous option, just be sure to include your name and email address. On Friday, I will announce the results! What a great way to start the week.

Good luck to everyone!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Some days you got to day dream...

about the future - the very distance future. 


I stumbled across this photography blog and 1. this lady is amazing, 2. these are some of the most beautiful weddings I have seen. You'll have to check out the blog to see all of the photos.

What really caught my eye was this little purple design on the cake. I have always said black would be one of my wedding colors (I know that sounds odd), but now I might have to work on adding some purple.

Disclaimer: Don't get excited, I am pretty happy with my situation right now, and do not plan on getting married anytime soon :)

Friday, September 11, 2009

State Fair Time!

Oh the memories. 

Well the big week is over. Board meetings were a huge success, and I am excited to share some of the details of the new national advertising campaign soon. But onto this blogs subject matter - the Kansas State Fair!

The KSF holds lots of memories for me:

1. It was the first state fair I had ever been to.
2. It was the first time I had ever seen a hog show.
3. I got to share in a lot of special moments and wins with very close friends there.
4. I got to scratch a lot of bellies and hold a lot of halters - something I miss so much now!
5. I met some of my closest friends at the KSF - get to go there with one of those friends this weekend.
6. I don't know how many classes I judged there when I was on Butler and K-State's team.
6a. I also had my longest judging workout of my life there - Chris never could leave before Schaake.
7. I remember that I found out Ben had proposed to Corineah during one of those practices, but we couldn't say anything yet (even though I think the whole team had spread the word amongst ourselves.) 8. It was the first time that I walked into a cattle show and didn't know anyone except my team. It was a really uncommon feeling for me, but by the next year it was no different than going to a show at home.

There are lots of other too, and thanks to everyone that help make those memories happen. Can't wait to get there this weekend. I am sure Robin and I will be able to dig up a little fun.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Good art

It's something that my family likes.

It's a pretty common gift around our house. In fact there has been so many prints given to each other for Christmases, birthdays and other events that there really isn't any room left on my parents walls.

A few years ago when I was interning for the Calgary Stampede, I went into one of my coworkers office to discuss a few things. My eye was instantly drawn to a gorgeous print, of a heavy horse, that was hanging in her office. Now 1. I love heavy horses, 2. I had never seen this style of artwork. She told me the print was a gift, but didn't know too much about the artist. When the Calgary Stampede finally came I visited the Show Home. To my delight that year it was decorated in a very western style. Throughout the house were more of these extremely unique pieces of artwork. I remember this one was hanging above a staircase.

"Inevitable"
Two years summers ago my family and I were walking through the Western Art Show at the Stampede, and all of a sudden I saw the prints that I had admired before. Al Nelson Weitzel was the featured artist. I was so excited to finally meet the artist and ask him about his work. Weitzel uses a technique called scratch board, making the subjects seem like their jumping right off of the page. Although, Weitzel is really known for his wildlife portraits, he does a fair bit of heavy horse work and some western prints as well. 

"Feathers"
There was one print that especially caught my dad and my eyes. A black calf, that dad said could only be made better if it had a blaze on him. At the time Weitzel only had the original, but had received lots of interest in the print, and was considering making some open edition prints. I crossed my fingers that my wish would come true because I really wanted us to buy that for dad for Christmas. Sure enough we were able to buy the print for dad, but to my surprise there was also one sitting under the tree for me as well. My picture hangs in my office now, and I like knowing that dad and I can both look at our pictures knowing the other one may be doing the same. 
My print.

I would definitely encourage you to check out his work www.weitzelart.com. 

A group effort

Putting our heads together.

At work I thought that is was about time that we put together a little video on our own work. My boss is also always telling me how important it is to get my work out in front of other people. We have a young kid in the office (I say he is a kid and he isn't that much younger than me!) that does some great video editing. So, between our editing, wordsmith and photography skills we were able to come up with this little number.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I wonder when we (farmers and ranchers) will be invited to speak?

The answer is not likely.

Bob Barker has donated $1 million to Drury University to fund the Drury University on Animal Rights. I think this is scary. We now have courses that are preaching HSUS's agenda.

According to Drury University's newspaper, The Mirror, the goal of the course is to raise moral consciousness about the most current conditions and uses of nonhuman animals and therein the ethical dimension of relationships between nonhuman animals and human beings.

Here's the problem they are not nonhuman animals - they are animals. I love, respect and care for all my animals (primarily cattle) at the highest level possible, but at the end of the day they are cows and they can't reciprocate any of those feelings or actions. We need to stop humanizing nonhuman objects.

You can read the rest of the article here. I just wonder when we are ever going to have the course - Non-agriculture kids, come out to the farm and learn what agriculture is really about.

Side note: Drury University is a private, liberal arts college in Springfield, MO. The university enrolls about 1,550 undergrads, more than 2,000 adult part-time undergrads and around 400 graduate students in six master's programs. 

The big guys are in town

It's board meetings at the office. 

The board rolled in last night to start off an important week of decision making. My team in the office is presenting a lot of new ideas regarding the national advertising campaign that we have been working on. I won't lie, the process has been a little stressful. Last night though, it seemed to all pay off. Our committee got a sneak peak of the campaign and they love it! I promise more specific details will come.

I hope everyone as a great week. I have got some blog posts already scheduled to go, so you shouldn't feel my absence too much. Talk to you soon.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Now this is a response!

I don't think anyone could have said it better.


Last week there was a little disruption on the K-State campus. Our college newspaper, the Collegian, ran two stories that could be labeled as anti-agriculture. They ruffled more than a few feathers, including mine. As I talked to students and alumni what many were struggling with was what should I say, they weren't quite sure how to formulate a response. As farmers and ranchers we know we treat our livestock with the utmost care, we have a passion for producing safe, quality food, but how do you convey this message - along with the facts - to those on the opposition.

A few days later a pro agriculture article ran in paper, and it was a nice article. I am glad that the editors ran it. However, this response in the form of a letter to the editor is awesome. I wish I knew who the author was to give them props. It's definitely worth reading, and I am pretty sure I am going to take this approach in some of my responses from now on.

Vegetarianism: More than just a lifestyle  
Cargill's support on campus questionable with company's track record 

Image doesn't matter...

but really its does.

How many times have we been told it doesn't matter what others think. It's not how you look, it's what's on the inside that counts. People are opened minded, they don't prejudge.

Well although these statements hold some truth and make you feel all warm and fuzzy, the real truth is image dose matter. I'll be honest and say that I always have cared what other people think. I am conscience of the decisions I make, and take other's perceptions of me pretty seriously.  I know that business is about your smarts, intuition and who you know. So one day when an opportunity is becomes available I want that potential client or employee remembers me as intelligent,  driven and industry savvy. It doesn't mean that I kiss butt or don't have any fun, it just means that I am aware of my image.

Recently, I found a great website called Brand-Yourself.com, and they have a pretty good blog. Today's article was how we use social media and how it can portray what we represent. When I post on Facebook, my blog or make comments on other social networking site people are forming an opinion about me. The author, Brenden Wales, makes some really good points:

The question what do you represent is vital to your future success and happiness. Here is what goes through a recruiter’s head when they see your Facebook picture of your recent record-setting keg-stand?

“Nice form, but is his unique ability to drink 50 fluid ounces of ice cold Natty Light really going to make him a great Financial Analyst?” (Midway through the thought, your beautiful resume on bone-colored 32 lb. paper with a barely visible watermark falls into the trash-can, never to be seen again by that organization)
This picture may be good for a beer-tap inventor, but not for a financial analyst applicant for Goldman Sachs. You are representing your ability to party, not your potential to become an industry-leading business executive."
And...
"Your Personal Branding efforts will pay off huge dividends and your social status on Facebook will not falter due to your lack of drunken images."

Something to keep in mind. Hope you are all having an awesome long weekend!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

A good week

It's all paying off.

So although work has been really busy and a little stressful lately, our team got some great news this week. Our I am Angus videos are now airing on U.S. Farm Report and AgDay tv on RFDtv. Two weeks ago the videos starting going up. Each one is aired twice, once on each program. We are pretty excited about this, and think it is going to be great promotion for the breed! Below is that the videos look like on TV. If you can't catch the shows on TV, we'll be putting them up on our YouTube channel as well - there are three up right now.



I love the Smith family's story. Three generations of family farming, and hopefully more to come!

Friday, September 4, 2009

It's here...

College football, this weekend... enough said.

So to say that I am pumped for this weekend would be an understatement. I don't know how many times this summer my friends and I have said we can't wait for football season to be here, and this is the weekend it starts.

Its hard to describe K-State football to someone that's never been. It is kind of like the movies. A sea of purple, that contains the most passionate fans you'll ever see, and you get to be right in the middle of it all. I remember my first football game. We finally had a weekend that we weren't judging, and Em was able to get a hold of some tickets, from the company she did her summer internship. We played Oklahoma State and lots of cattle friends came in for the game. Em taught me all about the traditions, and actions to the Wabash Canonball and the words to our fight song. I was hooked.

Some of my best memories have been in the tailgating parking lots of K-State. Moving from truck bed to truck bed, hanging out in the sheep unit pasture and making sure to stop at Tbaugh's family's tailgate - its probably one of the best ones on the block. I tell Tbuagh all the time its the only reason why I am friends with her, is because of this dip her mom makes - its amazing!

Tailgating last year in Tbaugh's parents seat! Love these girls!

This year could be a little rough for the Wildcats. We had a terrible coach for the back few years, the quality of football, the depth of players and the support has gone down. But there is hope in sight. This year our old coach Bill Synder is coming out of retirement. I am pretty sure it would take a miracle for him to fix it all, but at least it's a start. No matter what happens I will always bleed purple. The game is at 6 p.m. this Saturday. I am sure I will return with lots of stories and photos.

This will give an idea of what I will get to experience. The chant at the end is one of my favorites. If you are wondering what in the world is going at point in this video, but sure to ask!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Everyone thinks they should be a journalist

I still bleed purple but I am pretty disappointed in my school right now.

Yesterday, a friend let me know that their was a questionable article in the Collegian - K-State's student run newspaper. The article, an opinion piece, was another inaccurate attack on agriculture and there are three things that really bothered me about this article.

1. The author, Beth Mendenhall, gives an uninformed version of the truth. Now I understand that everyone is entitled to their opinions and freedom of speech. However, when you disguise your version of the truth you have now wrongly educated others.

2. People forget where they came from. I think people on this campus have forgotten that K-State used to be called the Kansas State Agriculture College. Our school is known for its renowned contributions to agriculture practices around the world. We are also one of the largest colleges on campus. It has has been implied before that if you don't have the College of Ag behind you, whether you are running for  Student Body President, University Ambassador, scholarships, etc., you aren't going to go very far. But despite all this we have unappreciative people that choose to slander our profession. I have no problem with those that choose not to eat meat, but you better remember where the clothes on your back came from, and all the other animal byproducts that influence your day.

3. I am a little disappointed in the College of Ag. So far there has only been 64 comments on this story, and there are how many people at K-State that somehow depend on agriculture? Its the worst thing we do in our industry - complain and moan to each other, but don't take the time to form a response directed towards those people we are calling misinformed. We should be stepping up and educating others that don't have the same experiences and opportunities to learn firsthand what agriculture is all about. I really hope that I can have faith in my old college professors and deans this morning, that they will be talking about this with their students. What a great learning opportunity it could be, because these kinds of anti-agriculture articles aren't going away anytime soon.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

101 in 1001 update.


Time for that every two week update that I haven't been giving ever two weeks. 

So the list is going slowly, but at least somethings are getting closer to being accomplished. Read about what 101 in 1001 is. 

Giving gratitude once a month - haven't been too bad on this. You can look up my posts on Change, 101 in 1001 - not so good and Giving Thanks. It's been a good to reflect back and think about what I am thankful for each month. 

I put another handwritten thank-you card in the mail today. I guess you'll just have to wait and see who the lucky person is.

I did put in a huge order or photos from snapfish this week. You can now order your photos off of Facebook from snapfish. I'll let you know how they turn out.

I finally tried a new recipe, and I promise to post it soon. This one I got from one of my clients, that is turning out to be a great friend too. Robin and I are actually headed over there for supper tonight, so I might come back with another one.

Working on calling my grandparents every month. Got August done, and it was great to catch up with both sets of them.

Going to church 12 times in 12 months. Went TWICE in August, and that's all I could have gone, since I was on the road all the other weekend. Pretty impressed with myself.

And finally, I kind of sold one of my pictures. My sister bought a copy of the photo that I entered in the LPC photo contest. She had it printed on canvas and gave it to one of her friends as a wedding gift. I really want to start printing my photos on canvas this year. I got some great inspiration going through the Western Art Showcase at the Calgary Stampede this summer. Now I just need to find the money and time.


That's the update. Maybe in two weeks I'll have a little more progress!
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