Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Good bye 2014 and Good Riddance

I have to say that 2014 has been the biggest roller coaster year I have ever had. Don't get me wrong there were many wonderful things that happened in my life this year but unfortunately just as many negatives. Let's just say that I'm glad this year is done and a new one is beginning. 

Instead of focusing on the bad things that happened this year I want to highlight all the good things that did go on. 

Graduating from LPN school
One of the things that consumed most of my year was nursing school. What took a little longer than I had originally planned but has gotten me one step closer to my dreams. I am now working as a nurse at the Nursing Home I started at over 2 1/2 years ago as an aid. I actually just got the email saying that I can take my boards and become an official LPN!! So that will be the biggest goal of 2014 is to pass my boards. 

Missouri Honey Princess/Queen
I have to say that I have been extremely blessed to get to serve as the 2014 Missouri Honey Princess. This year as the princess has allowed me to travel all over the state, meet some amazing people, and help increase my knowledge and the knowledge of others about bees and honey. I think I traveled over 5,000 miles, to around 19 different event and have met hundreds of people! I attended 2 wine tastings, many beginning beekeeping classes, the Mo State fair, my county fair, 2 governors conferences, and many more amazing events. But even more exciting is that they have selected me to do it another year as the 2015 Missouri Honey Queen!! I am beyond excited for another great year with the MSBA!

I officially Retired from Livestock Showing
Well I had originally thought that I was going to be done showing livestock last year because I knew that I would be in Nursing school. But my Ag teacher kept asking if I would show and he volunteered to keep the pigs at his house. So I wouldn't have to worry to much about them. So I showed 2 pigs and ended my career officially. I also took the money that I got from selling my pigs and donated it to a local charity. 

I got to learn extensively about my Family History
This year I had several opportunities to learn extensively about my family history. My mom and I spent this Memorial Day visiting many cemeteries and many headstones belonging to people in my family. Mom also spent that time telling me about each of these people and how they belong to me. We went back to 3-4 generations back grandparents. We also began going through some things at my grandmas house and have been going through many pictures, letters, and memorabilia from my family. To me this stuff is worth more than gold and I'm so happy that my family really tries to preserve this stuff and likes to learn the stories and are willing to pass them down!

Other Travels
Along with all my princess travels I did some traveling of my own to some neat places. Nothing like last years trip to Wyoming but still any chance to travel is great! Probably the coolest places that I got to visit was the American Gothic house 2 times once to eat pie that was made in the house :) I learned that it was located in Iowa just last year and really wanted to go. It is actually not that far from where my grandma lives. One sad thing was that due to being busy and gone during many rodeos I only got to attend 2 rodeos this year :( I got to go to the PBR in Kansas City in February and then a PRCA rodeo in Sidney Iowa. Both great as usual!

New Year!
Those things along with some that I'm sure I've forgotten are probably the highlights of my year. I am so excited to see what next year brings. My resolutions that I made last year were pretty sad and the only one that I came close to accomplishing was Trying 100 new recipes. I got close at around 76. So I say that's pretty great! 

I'm not going to set resolutions or goals for next year because I just want to live. I am going to focus more on me this year and really try to say "NO" more often. I'm going to try to focus more on God and establishing a better relationship with Him. Finally I'm just going to keep working towards my dreams. They've been the same now for quite some time now and I've made some progress and I refuse to give up on them. So I wish you all a wonderful New Year and let's make 2015 great!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

45th Missouri Governors Conference on Ag

This past January I got to attend just one day of the Governors conference and I had a blast. This year I got to attend all 3 days and it was even more amazing!! This years event was at the Lake of the Ozarks at Tan-Tar-A resort. I left early Thursday morning in the snow. Thursday night was the first event. They had a Taste of AgriMissouri reception. Where all the food prepared was grown/produced/made in Missouri. Of course the food was amazing. There was lamb, ham, beef, spaghetti squash, jams, honey, mixed greens, meringue, and ice cream and so much more.  

My plate of food!
Dessert. Meringue made with Missouri eggs.

Our display.

Me and My friend Darrell who makes some awesome granola.

Uncle Bob winning an award. I love his Jam! It was so great to meet him in person!

This Chef who won an award for using Missouri Products in his restaurant. 

Some soda that's made in Herman, MO. 

The second day was filled with some wonderful speakers who spoke on some hot topics in Agriculture. The Governor even spoke during our lunch. 

The Director of Agriculture for Missouri Richard Fordyce

State of the Industry Panel. All the big wigs in MO AG. :)

Charlie Arnot; The CEO of the Center of Food Integrity. I loved his speech. He spoke on how we can help ease the public's distrust and misconceptions in AG. 

The Governor Jay Nixon Speaking during lunch.

Our Lunch

Best speaker hands down in my books. He spoke about some history of AG and how we can do our part in promoting AG. 
Plus I got to meet him and am getting a signed copy of his book!! 

Cyndi Young and Tom Brand some Farm Broadcasters. 

They had everyone taking pictures with this sign showing that "I am Missouri Agriculture"

David Frost speaking about Wine. Very interesting but way over my head as a novice wine drinker :)

Me handing out samples of Honey ice cream and fielding questions about bees!

Day 3 brought with it more speakers and a big section on Youth in Agriculture which I enjoyed because it was mostly FFA and 4H kids along with The Peterson Farm Bros. (and Sister). We also had a banquet that night honoring some people along with my dear friend Laurie Link from Country LINKed who, along with her son, were given an award for their photography. After the Banquet was a concert by Sawyer Brown which was great.

This is Allison Sunstrum the CEO of GrowSafe Systems for Cattle. Definitely one of my favorite talks. 

Dan Davidson an Agronomist who spoke about Cover crops


They did a great talk about advocating for AG and about their success. They also sang all their songs. It was so funny watching the videos on the big screens and then thinking "Oh yeah they are right there!!"

Then I got to meet them and get a picture with them!!!!! :)

Me and Laurie and her Daughter!

Me and Valerie who went with me and is the President of the Missouri State Beekeepers Association.

Wyatt Laurie's son receiving his award for his picture.

Laurie Receiving her award

Sawyer Brown Band

All the Free stuff and things I got from the booths.

This was an amazing trip and I learned SOOOO much about how to be a better agvocate and things about AG in general that I didn't know. I got to meet some awesome people and people who I've followed on FB for quite a while. I can't wait to go back next year!! If your from Missouri and are involved in Ag I highly encourage you to go to this conference. It's well worth the money!