Quick update

Things have been crazy around here. We finished harvest! Yay! Cows are on the way home as we speak, Halloween is over, parent-teacher conferences are done, Grandma’s house is now empty (a story I’ll have to share sometime…it’s a doozy!) and I’m getting ready to leave tomorrow for a fall Farm Bureau YF&R meeting in St. Louis. Yeah, and that is just the last 4 days!

Good news: Measure 2 was defeated – yay! I’d like to think that I helped educate a few people and had a small role in that.

Mediocre news: There will be lots of changes in the future for ND. We now are sending 2 new members to Congress. Good? Bad? We’ll see. Whatever happens, here’s to hoping that agriculture is at the forefront of their minds when voting. We will all need to be vigilant and loud when moving forward.

Bad news: Eh, why dwell on the bad. Lets skip it.

So, my next post will be in St. Louis (if the hotel has wireless…any suggestions on a carrier for traveling? Some of those are way spendy!). We’ll keep you posted!

Bad taste in my mouth

They did it. After swearing up and down that they weren’t accepting any funds from HSUS, the backers of Measure 2 sold out. Apparently someone, somewhere is pretty nervous that they’ll lose the battle, because they’ve brought in the big dogs.

What am I talking about? Well, this morning I caught a commercial on TV regarding Measure 2. Supposedly it was a group of hunters talking about the lack of ethics in a “canned hunt.” Comparing high-fence hunting to going to the zoo and shooting a buffalo. Funny part is that the measure doesn’t “technically” address buffalo, just farmed elk and deer. So according to the sponsors of the bill, shooting a buffalo in an enclosure is just fine. (Although I think the zoo may have a word or two to say about it! LOL!)

At the end of the commercial, those little words show up at the bottom: “This ad paid for by the Humane Society Legislative Fund.” I’m guessing that the measly $100,000 or so that the ads cost were a joke to them. I mean, they have millions upon millions at their disposal, so this would just be hardly a drop in the bucket.

I wonder how many people sent them money, thinking they were saving a dog or a cat at a shelter, only to find out now that they’ve paid for an ad in North Dakota to take away certain hunting practices?

I’ve already heard some of the sponsors of the measure claim on radio that they have no control over where HSUS spends their money. That they didn’t ask for them to come here and get involved. That they haven’t had direct involvement with the cause. Sorry if I’m a tad skeptical about all that, but it seems a bit of a desperate attempt to try to sway last-minute voters. And I hope they realize what they’ve started.

Once a group like HSUS gets financially involved in a fight, they don’t like to lose. Again, check out what’s happening in Ohio…or any of the other states that have issues that interest this particular group. Their website claims North Dakota’s Measure 2 as one of their projects…again, the sponsors of this measure should be wary.

The good news is that this particular ad will stop running in less than a week. But you know what they say, once the barn door is open…well, you know.

Oh, and by the way, vote NO on Measure 2.

Bright future indeed

Last week I attended the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis. Let me tell you, it was AMAZING! To see that many young people interested and active in an ag organization is encouraging and inspiring, to say the least.

I was there in a “professional” capacity. My husband and I serve on the Farm Bureau Young Farmer and Rancher committee, and on that committee, I serve on the Promotions Subcommittee. One of the great privileges I had was the chance to attend the FFA Convention. We spent hours talking to kids, giving out prizes, conducting our quiz bowl and having a blast!

(Read more about the convention from Will Gilmer’s point of view here:  http://www.fb.org/blog/index.php/2010/10/23/ffa_contestants_set_a_great_example )

Since returning home, I’ve been thinking about the future of agriculture. To tell you the truth, I think about it a lot. Lets say that some drastic piece of legislation is passed, and somehow our way of life is deemed obsolete. Or rules are enacted by the EPA that makes our farm too great of a liability. What would we do? Where would we go?

The only way we can guarantee these things don’t happen is by educating those that aren’t here with us on the farm. Show them what we do, why we do it and why our operations are important to their future. The good news is, that with more than 50,000 people attending the National FFA Convention last week, we have the opportunity to have a LOT of voices out there!

No, it won’t be easy, but we have the tools available…and the resources are all around us. Preparing the next generation to continue what we’ve started is key. I can’t wait to see where they take us!

Going out on a limb

They said it couldn’t be done…they said it wouldn’t matter…they said we had to keep doing things the way we had in the past. Well, guess what, we didn’t…

The Dickey County Farm Bureau (of which, I am a board member), decided to hold its annual meeting a little differently this year. We called it “Pigs, Pits and Pistols.”

We roasted a whole pig (as in the whole thing, directly in a “pit”), had inflatable games for kids, had shooting sports for the bigger kids, had a Marksmen Quadrathlon and an archery demonstration. There were laser shooting games for kids of all ages, a keg of root beer and ice cream on the deck, sodas for all and room for about 150. Oh, and it was all free…well, except for the Quadrathlon, but the two top scorers took home all the cash.

Guess what? We ran out of room.

That’s right…we had an annual meeting (of which our yearly attendance averages right at 30) and we served over 160 at supper. We planned for 150, but figured it was a pipe dream. It was amazing! We had to open up the other section of the lodge…we had to have people eat outside!

We had teenage boys there on a Saturday afternoon! And they were having fun! At an annual meeting!

I didn’t include video of the meeting part, but the grassroots movement is definitely alive and well. And we were able to initiate some interest and excitement about becoming more involved in our organization. What more could we possibly ask for?

I don’t know how we’ll top this next year…but we better start planning now! 😉 Hmmm…wonder if Siegfried and Roy would come out of retirement…