Sunday, November 11, 2012

Those at the Table Make the Decisions

In a time of politic turmoil, I am kindly reminded that those who show up are the ones who make the decisions and are those that make a difference. Now, it could be debated that the difference and the decisions are not always what is needed. Nevertheless it is true.

Many are upset about the outcome of elections and just as many are celebrating. It comes down to showing up and making connections. If you want to influence people, communicate with the people that have the most skin in the game. ( FYI-These are not the CEO's.) These are the unemployed , the food purchaser, the driller or truck driver, farmer/ rancher, school teacher/ administrator, the doctors and nurses , miner and small business owner etc.

We must also acknowledge that we need to also approach our elected officials and invite them to come to the table and hear what is most important to each of us. If we do not converse with them they can only act on what is shared by those that do...
“The dinner table is the center for the teaching and practicing not just of table manners but of conversation, consideration, tolerance, family feeling, and just about all the other accomplishments of polite society except the minuet.”-Judith Martin

So, I encourage all to acknowledge where we are. Respect the position in which the elections placed a candidate, work from the ground up, inviting others to join in the dialogue and question decisions made. There is always room at the table, we simple have to add another chair!

We can make a difference. The power of 1 is much stronger than one thinks!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Prom Dresses and Politics

Today was a great day! I was able to work with numerous Jr. High and High School students who are filled with possibility and amazing perspective! Today they enlightened me for a bit with their thoughts on politics and prom dresses. It is amazing how they can tie these topics to the various science topics that they were to be learning about. Sometimes it was a stretch, but a connection nontheless.

What I learned:
* Smoking is a hot topic. Some feel it is a right, others a priviledge.
* Feel that elections should be won by the popular vote, not the electoral college.
* Politcal ads do not represent those running well.
* They are nervous for the future.
* They are happy to know that we only have 4 years and then there will be another opportunity.
* Politics are about ones chemistry with people, not the issues.
* They are concerned about our state because we have oil, natural gas and coal.
* Animal welfare is important to many differnt kinds of people.
* They realize that Farming and Ranching is at the heart of the North Dakota heritage.
* They are excited for the opportunity to vote!

I also learned:
* That prom dress shopping is a year long event.
* Dresses are expensive.
* There are a numerous styles and hundreds of colors/ patterns.
* Nothing is totally ruled out until it has been tried on.
* The laws of physics come into play when finding a dress that will fit correctly and stay up.
* Hours are spent searching online for just the "right" dress.
* All generally attend the dance, but choose to attend the party if it is good.
* Guys wait until closer to decide who they want to go to the dance with incase they are no longer dating the same person as they are today, but that it is understood that they will attend with whomever they are dating close to the Prom.

All in all, whether you are talking prom or politics, in the message the students shared it was all about the "P".... possibility, perspective, patience, popularity and the party!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Wild about Game!

If you would have asked me 10 years ago if I would be excited about hunting, I probably would have told you no. If you would have asked me if I liked eating wild game I probably would have said, "Well the hotdogs that my dad and uncle used make make 20 years ago were great!". Today I am here to tell you that I am excited about hunting and that wild game can be tasty and easy to prepare. The biggest reason... it has become a family activity!

All of our 5 kids enjoy taking a ride to check the corn feeder and looking for tracks to see what direction the animals are coming from! Nothing like free natural entertainment!

Ben, now 11 1/2 years old, hunts pheasants with a gun and deer with a bow.
Libby(almost 9), pulls bow and practices shooting at a target.
Chris (5 1/2 yrs old) practices bow too!

We all get excited to see the animals come close enough to aim at and even more excited when we can shoot and hit them. It is also exciting to know that we are skilled or lucky enough to bring home food that will keep my crockpot and grill busy!

This weekend was a major milestone. Ben was able to shoot and hit his first deer, as well as, his first pheasant. He was able to respond, not react, listen to his dad, and take his time adjusting.

Hunting is more than a harvest of animals for our family freezer. It is a family affair and quality time together!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The NEED for 3, MEASURE 3!

Today, I have had the opportunity to share my insight on the need to pass MEASURE 3. My husband and I have had several calls, and I have been able to "speak" to several people via Facebook and text regarding adding a constitutional amendment protecting farming and ranching practices in North Dakota.

Simply put... This amendment is like our right to bear arms. It doesn't mean we can shoot someone. Measure 3 gives farmers and ranchers the right to use the most current practices. It doesn't mean we can be negligent. It simply means we can choose to use best practices for our operations. Just as teachers use researched best practices with their students!!! Another scenario is that we have an amendment in the constitution that protects our right to hunt and fish. This means that we are awarded the priviledge, but have to follow the rules of hunting seasons, quantity limits and purchase licenses. The passing of Measure 3 would essentially do the same thing. We as farmers and ranchers would still have to abide by the rules and regulations that are reflective of safety, consumer request, and need.

Here is a conversation that helps explain Measure 3.....

ND Citizen: I'm still really confused on this measure. Don't farmers already have the right to use the most current practices? Why do we need to vote on it? I'm not sure which way to vote on this one.

ME: Please let me share. We do not have the right to farm or ranch protected in our state constitution. Outside special interest groups are working very hard to take away our right to provide the state/ nation/ world with quality food choices. They are attempting to eliminate all animal agriculture and drastically cut production of crops.
They do not understand the need for modern practices such as cover crops to enhance soil quality and prevent erosion not to mention food for livestock or technologies such as precision farming that can allow for minimized fertilizer, seed and chemical usage.

Modern practices include things that are very old practices but are still being done today such as branding and artificially inseminating animals. By protecting these among other practices we can stand strong against these special interest groups that are out to endanger the livelihood of over 32,000 farms in ND. With the passage if Measure 3 there is also a positive effect on or protection for all jobs (tens of thousands ) connected to agriculture in our state.

ND Citizen: Okay, that makes sense. But who defines the modern practices terminology? I guess thats my issue with it. Because I am all for cover crops and precision farming and things of that nature.

ME:Modern and practices are guided as terms by their formal definitions in the dictionary as individual terms.(Modern: of, relating to, or characteristic of a period extending from a relevant remote past to the present time. Practices: to do something customarily.) The legislature and / or other formal systems that are regulatory provide the guidelines. As fast as things change they also change slow enough to look at the researched best and modern practices with a careful eye that will provide the safest and best scenario for all given a wide variety of operating sizes, conditions and methodologies.

After soliciting input from individuals involved in agriculture I was fortunate to be able to explain more....

ND Resident: Can I ask a question? Why was this introduced? who is trying to take away your rights as farmers? Does the constitution not allow for modern farming practices already? I believe everyone should be happy with the conservation practices of modern farming. Who is opposed? By the way this is a good topic to discuss because the wording is vague in the amendment. You are right to inquire what exactly is "modern farm practices". One of the reason why it needs to be defined is because what happens when a different administration gets in there and interperates modern farm practices under a different definition.

ME: Thanks for the question! Farming and ranching are under attack from special interest groups such as PETA, HSUS, environmental organizations etc. as a proud member if Farm Bureau and a state representative for the Young Farmers and Ranchers we along with numerous other agricultural groups have formed the Feeding Families committee and have worked hard for the past 1.5 years to collect over 26,000 signatures to get Measure 3 on the ballot. We do not have a constitutional amendment that protects farming and ranching. I understand the concern about vagueness, but it is impossible to list all the modern practices today and in the future.
This amendment simply protects our right to farm and ranch ensuring food choice and our ability to use safe approved practices. It will not change anything with zoning as this is a legislative process. It does not mean we can go against approved regulations. It means that we are protected to use approved practices and that outside anti- Ag and special interest groups cannot take our heritage and livelihoods away from us. It is not a debate about GMO, organic or conventional seed. It is a measure to protect ALL acceptable/ approved practices and allow us to continue to research additional things such as conservation practices, more efficient machinery, new technology that will aid in the reduction of waste of seed, chemical and fertilizer etc. It will also allow us to continue practices that help care for and protect the livestock that raised in the state.

Outside special interest groups are working very hard in ND and the nation to abolish animal ag and other farming practices that are leading to better products and less fertilizer and chemical use. They do not understand and are not willing to listen as to why we do what we do. Please vote YES to Measure 3 and No on 5. For with this vote ALL will win!

So, what I ask is that if you wonder what is happening in the world of agriculture that as a state we need constitutional protection, ask a farmer or rancher, find out what is occuring on modern farms and ranches ask.... Farming and Ranching is at the root of our ND heritage. Please vote to protect it in respect of our ancestors and for this and future generations.


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Spooky Snacks

I will start by telling you that Halloween is my least favorite holiday, but one that ranks high for my kids. It is fun to see everyone dressed up, but a lot of work.

Despite my feelings for the holiday I thought it would be fun to make some spooky snacks for 4-H tomorrow. They are kinda healthy, but still yummy. Who can't resist chocolate, pretzels, brownies and rice crispy bars? Oh yah, I am bringing a big dish of grapes too.

There are pumpkin rice crispy bars, ghost brownies, and graveyard pretzels. The kids thought they were pretty good too! They had to sample of course. So you may be asking what is healthy about all these snacks. Well, I used Fiber One brownies, the crispy bars are low fat and bite size, and the pretzels are whole wheat.

The best part of these snacks are that there were quick! Nothing like opening a bunch of wrappers cutting them into smaller pieces and/ or reshaping them and adding, what is a must to have on hand, almond bark and white frosting that can be quickly colored! What could have been a LONG day of snack preparation took an hour and got my kiddos involved!
It was a yummy, quick good old time! Leaving us time to play outside in what may be our last nice weekend of Fall!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Value of Committing

What is the value of committing? Why do some people commit, some avoid it at all costs, and others over do it?

I know that there are answers ranging from one end of the spectrum to the other, but it is something to think about.

For me I used to over commit for fear that if I didn't I wouldn't like what someone else would do. In hindsight I acted out of lack of trust and confidence in others and a deep desire for control. The result was a lot of stress, lack of control, a lot of things partially done or not done well, extreme tiredness, unhappiness and ultimately confusion as to why all the previous was happening.

Recently I have not renewed some of my commitments. Life is still crazy, I am still tired, things are still not always completed, but it is for a very different reason. I am a mom of 5, working on a few projects I deeply believe in, spending a few days a month substitute teaching and chasing kids in several directions. All things I want to do, not obligated or guilted into doing. I may still be tired and things may be crazy, but I am now committed to doing what I want to be committed to and it feels SO good!

So if I were to share a few words of wisdom, I'd say " Ask yourself why you are or are not willing to commit. Find out what is to be gained or lost and how it impacts what you already have going." Remember some commitments do not have an end date... They renew themselves (with or without your permission).

Friday, September 21, 2012

Eat This....

The new Healthy and Hunger Free Kids Act
that has brought forth several school breakfast and lunch meal plan changes nationwide and has also started a lot of dialogue. It appears that one hand is promoting "calories in and calories out" and the other hand on the same body is dictating a national diet. There has to be a balance between exercise, nutritional meal that fit the needs of the individual and academics. Both nutrition and activity are needed to learn!

With all the changes in the meal patterns for schools who participate in the federal school lunch program there is a lot of misinformation floating around. This newsletter will help calrify the differences.

Full comparison of the old and new nutritional standards.

I live in a strong agricultural state. We believe in our products and want to see them utilized in our school food programs. We have kids that are active and some that are not. We still have physical education in our state, but we also have high academic expectations that if we aren't careful could minimize the amount of activity our kids get throughout the day. The new standards place limits on calories and proteins, dictate how much of the breads can be non- whole grain and require students to take a specific amount of fruits and veggies. It sounds ok from the outside to many, but there are some HUGE challenges with the new plan. The biggest of MY concerns is that many kids are hungry shortly after finishing lunch. The calorie limits are ok for a few, but not enough to sustain most throughout the remainder of the day. If students are active and involved in before or afterschool extra- curricular activities they need more than what is currently being provided. Students may not get an opportunity to eat until after 6pm and then gorge themselves or come home from school and grab whatever they can. When possible students are also leaving school at lunch and heading to the local stores to purchase foods to fill themselves up. Almost all of it being junkfood!

I will be the first to say that I think schools have had to pick up a large portion of things that used to be done at home and that the school really is not to blame for these new stadards. They are working the best they can to make the most of the guidelines in quantity and quality. To some extent their hands are tied, but their voices do not have to be muffled. I will also say that a nutrition program will NEVER meet the needs of all our kids, but it has to be better than what it has been turned into. For some of the students in our schools, lunch (and sometimes breakfast) is the only "meal" they receive. I will also share that I HATE the limits on calories and protein. I LOVE the increase in fruits and veggie option (whole grain as well), but hate that they have to take a specified amount and that a large amount is being thrown away.

Interestingly enough, many kids didn't eat healthy under the old plan and still aren't with the new. Kids used to be able to get by with milk, croutons, and shredded cheese. Now they can pass with milk, a serving of veggie or fruit (which can be thrown away), whole-grain croutons, and shredded cheese. The only difference is their lack of ability to go back for seconds of cheese and croutons in this situation, or milk, breads and proteins in the general sense. We just have more being thrown away and kids that are still not eating balanced meals and/ or leaving with full bellies and are not able to perform to the best of their ability.

Here is a parady video that helps exemplify some of the results of the new meal plan implementation.
"We Are Hungry" Youtube video created by a school or group in Kansas to express the need to amend the new standards and share some of the impact of the ones recently inacted.

I have been fortunate enough to spend time in several different capacities in numerous schools partaking in school lunch on a regular basis, as well as be a "hot lunch kid" growning up. I didn't have the option to pack a lunch when I was in school and as an adult in the schools and as mom, I love the convienence of school lunch.

Sensible School Lunches on Facebook is a resource with lunch ideas, up to date information and dialogue. It is worth checking out and "liking"! It helps me keep up to speed with ideas for snack, packing lunches when needed and what is happening with the new nutrition standards that are part of the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act.

A lot of the hussle and bussle regarding this Act comes from kids, parents and those working in the schools. But even state leaders in agriculture care about good nutrition and a student's ability to perform in school. They know that kids need certain nutritional components and quantities that are different than what is allowable currently. Ag Commissioner, Doug Goehring, urged leaders from all 50 states to oppose the guidelines. Click here to read the press release regarding this action.

Change is never easy and I work to not jump on a bandwagon for or against anything, but when I am not happy after waiting for a while I look for a way to make things better. Below is a link to Wag'n Tales where one mom ran out of answers about the change in the lunch program for her son so they asked someone who should know, the US Secretary of Agriculture.

A 10-year old's letter to Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack, about school lunch.

If you want to share your insight, questions, comments and concerns regarding the new meal patterns please do so. No voice is too big or too small to make a difference!

To make your voice heard contact:
Undersecretary of Food & Nutrition Services
Kevin Concannon
1400 Independence Ave., SW
Washington, D.C. 20250
Secretary of Agriculture
Tom Vilsack
1400 Independence Ave., SW
Washington, D.C. 20250

Here are a few pictures of notes and drawings students have done to share their thoughts about the new meal patterns for school lunch.

** Frame 1: students go through lunch line. Frame 2: go to their cars. Frame 3: drive to gas station and go in. Frame 4: Come out of station with snacks and soda. Frame 5: People tell the lunch ladies that they hate the school food and the lunch ladies are sad.

"This lunch is Bulls*** I don't get enough food and I don't have enough time to go home and have a good meal."

"I do not believe the school lunch program is a good thing. Students with their own money can walk up town and get their own meal. The school's lunch doesn't taste very good, and there isn't very large amounts. For people with a larger appetite such as myself, I believe people who need to eat more, deserve more to eat. Some people go through the day hungry because of the small portions of food. And why limit what we can eat, when there are large amounts of leftovers being thrown into the trash and going to waste, If I didn't live the distance from school as I do now, I would go home and eat so I could feel full and not hungry and miserable. There is no point in limiting our hot lunch when after school we can stuff our faces at home. The program should be tossed out and the school board should listen to what the students want and what will fill them up and not be hungry."

We all have an opinion and want what is best. Share your thoughts and let others know that hungry kids are not happy kids. Therefore their parents, siblings,teachers and all others are not either! We want kids to know and practice good eating and exercise habits for lifelong well-being! Please let those who can make a difference know that you care! THANKS!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

My Cleaning Fairy

On most days I wish for a cleaning fairy. With 5 kids, a crazy schedule, a farm and a puppy nothing is ever clean and sometimes not even tidy. I dream of the cleaning fairy.... one that does not judge you, you do not have to pick up for, will come instantly when called, and gets the stuff out of the corners and behind the toilets that tend to be a bit scary.

Well, my second to youngest decided that she would try to help me out when I dodged out of the kitchen for a quick trip to the bathroom BY MYSELF :) My oldest daughter had made watermelon juice and melon slime for snack after her dance practice. ( Yippee- one less thing to tackle before heading to church school.)

It was fresh from the garden and kinda a fun, but messy project. She ended up getting a "few" seeds on the floor. So I asked her to clean it up when she was done. I then made my dash to the restroom, got side tracked and picked up a few things on the way and when I returned I was greeted with , "I'm helping Libby. She wanted to go downstairs." I looked and she was washing the floor.

I noticed the rag was wet and asked if she did that herself. She proudly said that she had and that the pink water smelled so good and was easy to get. She exclaimed, "I did it by myself. Now the floor smells good and not like puppy." I fought back tears and a desire to scream. I simply smiled and let her know that "see-through" water is for the floor. Pink yummy water is juice to drink. She was a bit sad and said, " I was being a big kid. I like to help. Next time can I use this?" and walks over to the pantry and grabs the non-stick spray. " It helps keep things from sticking just like the pancakes." Her smile was back and all I could do was say, "Mom will wash the floor.

You take these (cleaning wipes) and wipe the cupboards." And so we began the next round of cleaning and my dream of the non-judgemental cleaning fairly was more alive than ever!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Fall Has Fallen

It is not official yet, but Fall has fallen. Afternoons are beautiful, the air is crisp and although we have not had our first hard frost, there have been a few mornings that the low areas were shall I say "frost-y". So, what does this mean for me... it means packing a few seasons worth of gear for my oldest's football games, it means it is harder for me to get up in the early morning when it is dark, it means I want to go to bed earlier because it is dark earlier,
it means our corn and soybeans are ready for harvest,it means the air conditioner has been turned off and it also means that the heat gets turned on for a bit in the mornings to take the chill out of the air. Despite all this and more, the falling of Fall means that it is time to harvest the last of the garden goodies.
For those who have visited my home and have seen my garden it is big, but not large. Each year I experiment with several different fruits and veggies and plant around the 2 apple trees growing on one side. This year I was fortunate to have most of my plants grow,some almost too well, and provide goodies for my family, extended family, friends and our local school hot lunch program. It also provided most of the snacks during the summer for my kids. When they were hungry, they went to the garden instead of the pantry. My snack expense for June and July was next to nothing... YAH HOO!
I have come to enjoy most of the work that my garden takes. My entire family has fun planting the seeds and seedlings, watching it grow and eating from it. But I have to admit, that Fall is the hardest time of the gardening season for me. With the cooler temps it is not as inviting to spend time removing plants and collecting the last of the colorful produce.Chopping, dicing, canning and freezing odds and ends takes more time too due to the small batches of many different things. I also need to find a place in my freezer and pantry to store the last few bags and jars. Sometimes it is a tight squeeze, but by summer there always seems to be lots of room. This means we enjoyed all the work all winter and spring and kept our tastebuds and tummies full with flavorful, healthy food! Gardening is good, even when Fall is falling!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Do The Kids Get It?

It has been a long time I since I took time to write and I have had good intentions, but never put those intentions into action. Today just seems like the right time to get going again... I admit that I am hooked on Facebook, that I like to watch junk TV and I get wound up over things that I should let go. Sometimes my priorities are all mixed up and I choose to do "fun" things or more things less well than a few things timely and complete. Our farming lifestyle is very different than how I grew up in Minneapolis, but I wouldn't change it for the world. We don't keep the same schedule as many of our kids' friends parents, sometimes our 5 kids are limited as to what they can do because I am only one person and can only run in so many directions at one time and other times they are blessed with oppotunities that many children do not have. I constantly struggle with the idea of "do they understand". Today, as I sat to work on the "kid computer" in the kitchen while I wait for the dishwasher to finish so I can get my canning jars out and get busy making spaghetti sauce, I came across this document open and started by my 11 year old.... I think they do understand what our life can give them.
That what they may give up at times leads to gaining things that others will never have or perhaps even know they are missing. It was this beginning of a powerpoint that made me proud of all that I have come to love, the family I have and the hard work my husband, our employees and all that have come before us have put forth so we can lead the next generation into a life of honesty, hard work, belief, creativity, problem solving and prosperity.
"And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.” And he said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear. Mark 4:8-9

Sunday, April 1, 2012

It's All About Health, Wellness and Community Improvement

How do you fight for something that you know is a community improvement, a way to promote health and academics, and make some of the busiest streets safer and more accessable to a great number of people? Cautiously!

After a lengthy discussion this past fall, Underwood voted to accept a Safe Routes to School grant. Now, we once again are holding a meeting to allow community members to provide input, hoping to show the city commission that sidewalks and this grant are for the greater good of the community. This includes health, wellness and safety far all! I feel that the citizens are fortunate that the city council is willing to listen to their concerns and desires. They could simply decide on the implementation plan all on their own. After all, they have agreed to the conditions of the grant with their vote this past fall.

What concerns me is the small amount of or narrow focused information that those in opposition hold. I believe that the truth lay in the attempt to preserve what has always been and a fear of not knowing what a change such as sidewalk addition will lead to that causes their frustration, anger, and disapproval.

So you may ask, What do I know about the sidewalk need? Well, I know that I keep my kids close to me and within clear eyesight when we walk or bike in town. When I lived in town, I appreciated being able to teach my oldest child to bike in a safe environment on the sidewalk infront of my house and teach him skills about safety and courtesy where he didn't run the risk of getting hit if he fell. As I drive through town, I see kids roaming on the streets and they don't stay off to the side. People drive faster than they should and drive distracted. Many walk or rollerblade with headphones and cannot hear cars or others.I see handicapped individuals wheeling or being pushed in the streets about 4-6 feet from the curb due to the slope of the streets. Simply put, sidewalks aid in minimizing risk.

I also know that Safe Routes to School grants are not only about elementary kids walking to school. This is a grant that communities apply for and receive in order to strengthen and build the community in the areas of health, wellness, and safety. It was formulated in response to the increasing obesity epidemic that is taking place in the nation's youth. It is focused on providing routes or venues for all members of a community to access safe walking, strolling, wheel-chairing, and biking routes in efforts of building healthy lifestyles for all. For it is only with guidance and modeling from adults that youth will see the importance and therefore the grans are for communties and all that utilize them. This grant also has other extreme positive impacts that put concerns over trees and flowers, moving fire hydrants and fences and snow removal to shame.

Hidden benefits include:
1) Reduced risk for heart disease and respiratory struggles.
2) Creation of the protein of BDNF (only created through physical activity) in the brain which makes receiving and using new information possible. Therefore, improving the potential for students to make academic progress.
3) Natural creation of chemicals in the brain such as dopamine etc that improve conditions such as stress, anxiety, depression, attention and impulsivity.
4) Increase in positive behavior habits and reduced risk behaviors associated with alcohol and drug use, sexual activity, poor eating habits, lack of physical activity and tobacco use.

So what can be done to make sidewalks happen in my community of Underwood, ND? I beleive that explaining the need, the large picture and the benefits of building the sidewalks besides improved property values need to be shared. It will take encouragement and trust to get those opposed to listen and step off their front stoop to see the community as it is now and how it can become a better place for all. It becomes a discussion that forces one to become less selfish and more selfless.
Here's to a healthier, safer, more understanding and stronger community as a result of creating sidewalks and being energized for the future.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

A Lazy Day-Z

After a busy week and a crazy Saturday taking 6 kids out to lunch a movie today has been rather lazy. Despite a catching a few minutes of several Lifetime and Food Network shows, nothing great has been accomplished!
Well, I should say my kids have accomplished a lot.
They have made sushi and chop suey for brunch with orange cookies for dessert!

We have several new Lego constructions including eagles, 4- wheelers, and alien battleships.

In efforts to avoid all naps we have read to babies, fed them, sung to them and rocked them so that they could sleep and wake up happy.

If that wasn't enough they all got along!
Despite the chaos that my house looks like when you walk in the door, our lazy day is one that was well spent.

Laundry and floor washing can always wait. I might as well make it worth the effort and tackle a LARGE pile instead of a medium one and scrub a few more spots off the floor if I am going to do a few. Right?

Here's to hoping others have moments like this today too!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Blogging Buddy Ben!

Hi,I am Ben.
I am 10 years old and excited to be able to start blogging with my mom. I attended a presentation in January that talked about Farmers and Ranchers and how they are reaching out to the consumers through the internet with tools such as Twitter, Facebook, Skype and blogging.

Michelle Payne -Knoper taught us that we need to get the consumers' attention. Sometimes people don't have the time to go to a speaker, but they may have the time to send a quick message or ask a question. So, that is when people started using social media to make connections to people that they do and do not know to share information.

It is important for people in agriculture to talk about what they do each day because most people do not know what happens on our farms and ranches and why they are important to our country. Did you know that each American Farmer is responsible for feeding 155 people? Well, it's true! They also work hard to make fuel and clothing and even things like crayons!

The next time I blog with my mom, we will have some facts about some of the cool things I am learning in ND History!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Where is My Prairie?

It has been a LONG time since I took time to write. Quite honestly I am not sure how 3+ months have passed but, I am ready to get going again!

Last night I arrived home at 12:40am after the completion of our 5th trip since December 22nd. Today I return to Bismarck (1hour away) for appointments all day and wonder where my prairie days have gone? It seems that I am missing part of life that I have come to enjoy.... Hot coffee and the sunrise, a landscape of flat fields and rolling small hills, a few moments with my husband and kids and a sense of having a bit if time to do the things I enjoy.
So how do I get this back when so much of my running is out of necessity and for others and for purposes I can't always pass up?
I have come to think that it is about perspective. It's not what I am missing or losing, but what I am gaining. Then I may just need to set the alarm earlier and schedule better so the coffee and I can enjoy the solitude, glow and colors of the morning!
Finally, I guess there is always tomorrow!