Day 30: Thanks for the Support!

Today is the last day of this 30-Day Blogging Challenge! I want to thank everyone that has been following my blog for the last 30 days. It is incredibly encouraging to hear that people are actually reading this. 🙂

I also want to thank the entire agricultural community for the support they have given me in the past year as I have started my adventure on a Big 10 Campus. I have discovered that the agricultural community is more supportive than any other I have seen. As I was applying for scholarship after scholarship, I had friends who said they were struggling to find scholarships and if they did find a scholarship, it was a competitive one. I have found that the agricultural community sometimes has more scholarships to offer than they have applicants for these scholarships.

The multitudes of scholarships I applied for and received have helped me greatly in my college pursuits thus far. It is wonderful that the agricultural industry is so supportive of its next generation because this generation is incredibly important!

I feel blessed on many levels to receive support from those around me and from the industry I am proud and excited to be stepping into! Thank you for spending these 30 Days With a Small Town Girl on a Big 10 Campus!

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Day 29: The Value of Family

For me, the holidays have continued all weekend. Today I find my house filled with my family. Being surrounded by family provides a wonderful feeling of safety and love.

Tomorrow, I will be heading back to campus. Some people might worry that I will miss the safety of home. However, there are many places on campus to find this support.

I’ve talked about the support I receive from my sisters at 4-H House. I can find this support many other places too. In fact, the entire college of ACES can be like a supportive family.

When I walk on the South Quad, I usually see at least one person I know, which makes a large campus seem quite a bit smaller. I know I can walk into the ACES library and get the help I need. I can ask my professors in my smaller classes anything I need to and know I will get an answer. These are just a few of the instances of the things that make a huge campus seem like a safe family.

My family at home is incredibly close and loving and supportive. I’m blessed to be able to find the support I need on campus.

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The blogging challenge is almost over!

Day 28: Have Patience

As you drive around today you will see Christmas lights and cars full of shopping bags. Or was that yesterday? As black Friday shopping moves to Thursday and Toyland is open before Halloween is over, we seem to try to make Christmas come earlier and earlier every year.

The world I live is one of instant gratification. We want things now. We want to know our test scores now. We want our Insomnia Cookies delivered sooner. We want the bus to be on time, not 2 minutes late.

However, this world isn’t realistic. In the real world, we have to be patient. This is especially true in the farming world. Farmers can’t decide when they want it to rain or when they want the sun to shine. They have to patiently and faithfully wait for the weather. They can’t control when livestock need their attention and they need to be fed everyday, even on weekends and holidays.

A lesson could be learned from the agricultural community. We will get our test scores when the professors grades them, Insomnia Cookies will be delivered when they are ready, the bus will come when it comes, and Christmas will be on December 25. Our society, especially my generation in college could take a lesson in how to be patient and appreciative of what they have.

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Keep up with the other bloggers!

Day 27: Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving!! As I watched the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and spent the day surrounded by family and yummy food, I can’t help but be reminded of all I have to be thankful for this year.

As I think of all the things I’m thankful for, I realize that most of them are important enough that I’ve already written about them at some point in this 30-Day Challenge.

I’m thankful that I’m attending the University of Illinois and that I get to live with the wonderful women of 4-H House.

I’m thankful for the opportunities I have here on campus and the many resources I have access to.

I’m thankful for my background and for my mom, dad, friends, and family that have all been very supportive.

I’m thankful for the opportunity to write and learn and share these things. I could keep going on with lists of things I’m thankful for, but you can find many of them by searching the archives of my blog.

Enjoy your holiday and keep in mind the many blessings we have to be thankful for!

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Keep up with the other bloggers!

Day 26: 5 Things College Students should Thank a Farmer for

As you know, tomorrow is Thanksgiving! This holiday is all about being thankful for friends and family and the many blessings we have. Farmers are often thanked for the food they provide for the rest of the population. However, there are many other items that college students especially use on a regular basis that they should thank a farmer for.

  1. Cosmetics – On campus, I live in a house with lots of girls. If the girls are going out at night, they want to look nothing less than their best. They may not realize that they should be thanking farmers for their beauty products as corn in the form of starch, oil, or powder can be found in these products as well as the lard from pigs.
  2. Crayons – Now you may think of crayons as something for elementary school kids – not college students – but coloring with crayons can be the most relaxing study break. Fat from cattle or oil from soybeans can be found in these colorful tools.
  3. Adhesives – As we decorate and finish projects and fix our own shoes, nothing is more important than tape and other types of adhesives. These adhesives can contain corn flour or corn oil or swine by-products.
  4. Soap – When you live in a place with people EVERYWHERE, it’s very important to stay clean. Many of the additives found in hand soap and other hygiene products are derived from corn. Fat from cattle and swine can also be found in soaps.
  5. Tables – Finally, we all need something to eat off and write on and set our laptops on. Most desks, tables, and chairs are made of wood that is stained and varnished. The varnish found on this furniture is shiny because of the corn oil found in it.

This is just a small taste of the many products farmers bring us. I hope that not just college students, but everyone can be thankful for the blessings we enjoy. This Thanksgiving, remember to Thank a Farmer!

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The other Farm Bloggers will be Thankful if you check out their blogs too!

Day 25: The Evolution of the American Barn

One of the first projects I did in college considered a claim that we read in a class reading. The author of the reading claimed that the automobile “destroyed farming as a culture… and turned it into another form of industrial production.” However, I didn’t agree with that statement. So I used the American barn to show that even if the face of farming has changed, the culture behind it has not.

The project required us to focus on a specific place, so I needed some pictures from home.

The first picture I would be able to find just by looking out my kitchen window. This would be a picture of our big, red barn that was built in the 1860s. This barn represents agriculture of the past and is the classic symbol of rural America.

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To get the second picture, I would need to drive about 3 minutes down the road to my brother’s house. Here I could take a picture of his hog confinement nursery, which was built two years ago. This barn represents the agribusiness of the present and how the face of farming has changed.

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Despite the fact that the way we farm has changed, my project went on to explain that the culture of this way of life has not changed. I spoke to the facts that the importance of a good work ethic, clear morals and values, and a strong education have always been a part of the farming community and still are to this day.

I’m incredibly grateful that agricultural technologies have advanced as much as they have to improve our production. But I’m even more grateful that the agricultural community has maintained its values even with those changes.

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Don’t forgot about the other 30-Day bloggers!

Day 24: Where it all Began

Thanks to my older siblings and my family that bleeds orange and blue, it wasn’t difficult for me to decide where to go to college. I was basically told that I could go wherever I wanted, as long as it was located in Urbana-Champaign and the school colors were orange and blue. 🙂

My decision of what to major in was not as simple. I have always known that I want to contribute to the agricultural industry because of my farming roots, but I didn’t always know how.

My junior year of high school I really started to think about what I wanted to pursue in college. I knew agricultural communications was an option as I have a few relatives in the industry, but I wasn’t really set on it yet.

This afternoon, I got to go back to the place that helped me make that ever-important decision of what to major in, my high school English teacher/Speech Team coaches’ classroom. It was in that classroom that she pushed me to write my own speech my junior year of high school. It was that informative speech entitled “What’s for Dinner?” that really allowed me to discover how much I love telling people about agriculture and how passionate I am about informing consumers.

1507345_697232503650776_1445803172_o This afternoon I went back to help the students that are still on the Speech Team now. I know how much I learned from that experience and how grateful I am for that opportunity. The skills that I learned from my small school’s speech team have contributed immensely to the success I’ve had in college so far.

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Keep reading the other Farm Blogs!