Prayer = Peace

I’m going to tell ya, this post today is going to be a whole lot more put together than what I was talking about yesterday. I was at the point where I just wanted to be by myself and be left alone and cry. I did that, but I also prayed. I prayed that God would send me on the right path and to show me what His plan for me was. That was at about 10:30 last night, I fell asleep shortly after still with a confused heart and a headache. I woke back up around 12:30 AM and I felt peace. Now, I’m not pushing my beliefs on anyone that might be reading this, but when you hit a low point in your life where you truly don’t know what to do I do believe that prayer and trusting in the Lord will, at least, give you some peace.

I love writing, I love talking, I love being around people, and put me in front of a camera? Oh my goodness, I’m in heaven. Which is why I chose the path of journalism earlier this year. I also have another love, houses. Now, this is kind of crazy, but I’ve moved 18 times in my short 18 years of life, is it something to necessarily be proud of? Maybe not, but we always ended up right back where we started at The Shofner Farm. I always kind of loved moving and being in a new place and decorating my new room, with that I also came into contact with lots of real estate agents. When I was little me, my mom, and dad always went to auctions too, I loved those! I took these things as another sign, all of that moving and all of those auctions could be the reason that I end up as a real estate agent and learning more about marketing. With this career I will still be able to write a little, talk to new people every day, and it is always going to be something different! Of course, I still think it would be so much fun to be a cosmetologist, but coming from a family that has several salon owners in it, I know that cosmetology isn’t exactly the easiest path. Do I feel like I will regret attending Bluegrass Community and Technical College? Nope. Will I miss not going to college football and basketball games? Probably, but CATurday still exists and lets be real, the University of Kentucky Wildcats will ALWAYS be number one in my heart no matter where I go to school. Will I regret not getting the “dorm-life”? Probably. Life is full of “IFS”, if I don’t attend Georgetown what IF I regret not doing this or being a part of that? If I do attend Georgetown what IF I don’t like it and I’m still out over 12,000 dollars? What IF I attend BCTC and I love it and I finally find my calling? We don’t know the answer to any IF question that could be asked and who knows how long our time here on Earth is? Personally, I believe Earth is just kind of like a rental property for me to live on for a short period of time, the place that is my true home is up in Heaven. I find a lot of peace in knowing that, so I figure, while I’m down here on Earth I may as well be happy and live life to the fullest, if I happen to make some money along the way or some bad decisions or have some regrets, who cares? In the end God will be the One who judges us and takes away all of our pain and confusion. I saw a quote last night on pintrest that also really helped me a lot, “God will wreck your plans when he sees that your plans are about to wreck you.”, I took this is maybe God opened my eyes to everything these past few days because He knew that if I stuck with my current plans they wouldn’t be the best for me. Also something else that helped me find peace.

With all of that being said, I go to the Danville campus of Bluegrass Community and Technical College next Wednesday for orientation and to make my schedule for the fall. This time yesterday I had no idea what I was going to do or how I was going to do it. This time tomorrow I may change mind again on what I want to become after college, then again this time tomorrow none of us may even been here to worry about it. You never know when your last day is going to be, so why not be free and live without regret?

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.” – Provers 3:5-6

The Distance from Your Head to Your Heart

Have you ever thought you had your life completely figured out and then just like that, reality hit you? Currently, I am in that situation. I have always been the girl that had every aspect of her life figured out. I knew exactly what I wanted to do and exactly how I wanted to do it. Honestly, I had plans to move mountains and c’mon… God is the only one truly capable of that. At the beginning of my senior year in August 2014, I absolutely knew I was attending the University of Kentucky. I absolutely knew I was going to become a lawyer. I absolutely knew I was going to do whatever it took to be on the University of Kentucky Dance team. Well, I went and visited more colleges, because my Momma (who always knows what is best for me even when I don’t see it at first) wanted me to be sure UK is where I wanted to be. Let’s fast forward about 7 college visits and around 4 or 5 months later to when Georgetown College popped up into my life. I was aggravated because I decided I wouldn’t want to learn at the University of Kentucky and that I would want to have fun and go to basketball games and put my education last and no other school was good enough for me. It was raining on my trip to EKU, so that was an automatic downer, NKU was too far away for my liking, I absolutely was not staying home in Campbellsville to attend Campbellsville University, and heaven forbid I go to Lindsey Wilson College with the majority of the Taylor County High School class of 2015. My best friend, Erica, toured Georgetown and loved it and told me I should tour it too! So, me and my mom hopped in the car and took the 40 minute trip over to Georgetown and I fell in love in an instant. I loved everything about the school, the hometown feeling, the small campus, and how happy everyone seemed there. Sure, my mom and Steve were telling me all along that after my four years there I would owe around forty or fifty thousand dollars, but none of that matter to me then. I had my whole life ahead of me to pay that off, I had zero worries, until this week. I guess since we are a month away from classes starting and the real world is hitting me that it is all beginning to make sense. No more mommy and daddy taking care of me and paying my bills and telling me what to do. It is Peyton against the world all alone about to be stranded in Georgetown, KY with a few friends from danceteam and no money. Now, I’m not dissing on Georgetown at all, because, don’t get me wrong, I still absolutely love it and making the dance team is one of my favorite accomplishments so far. BUT I have to do something that will make my future the best. I can tell I am a little bit all over the place right now and saying that a college may not be the best for my future, but hear me out, if I paid a minimum of eighty dollars a month on that approximate fifty thousand dollars I would finally have it paid off by the time I was 73 years old. I’m sure I could pay more than that each month, but it really puts it into perspective. Being like most 18 year old kids, I have not taken out a loan for anything or really ever even had a bill other than pageant dresses I put on layaway so this is my first experience with big bucks and quite frankly, I don’t like it. Everyone has been telling me, take away the money, if it was completely free would you still go there? Honestly, I’m not really sure anymore. I’m ready to start a career and that career is one where I can have something different happening almost everyday and I’m not sitting behind a desk at a computer all day. That is why I am looking into Bluegrass Community and Technical College and maybe getting my real estate license with a business and marketing degree or even cosmetology. So here I am, graduated from high school and a month before college classes start and I have no idea what I am doing.

I’m going to go back to when I was saying I would absolutely not  stay in Campbellsville and go to school or go to Lindsey Wilson. The CU Cosmetology School is actually something I am now checking into as well as Lindsey Wilson and the cost it would be for me to be a commuter student. It is honestly funny, but not funny at all, how you think you know exactly what you want, but then it can end up changing in an instant.

18. Eighteen. One-eight. It is a big number, you’re old enough to buy a lottery ticket, spray paint, tobacco products, ammo and fireworks. You’re also deemed old enough to make big life decisions on your own. It is a blessing and a curse that my mom is letting me decide what I want to do, because I would love for her to just tell me what to do with the rest of my life, but she can’t. Since I don’t have my sweet Momma T to make this quick (and I mean quick, classes start in a month!) for me, I guess I’m just going to have to rely on something else that has the number eighteen in it. The eighteen inches from your head to your heart. Making this choice won’t be easy and this whole blog post was basically a mess of me rambling on about. but I will listen to my heart. I need to do what makes my heart happy and I have faith that God will put the right path in my heart.

“Cause there ain’t no greater distance than eighteen inches from your head to your heart.”  – “Eighteen Inches” Lauren Alaina

Why is the Reporter Stationed by the Flag?

“As the flag covers the United States of America, so I strive to inform the people in order that every man, woman and child may know that the FFA is a national organization that reaches from the state of Alaska to Puerto Rico and from the state of Maine to Hawaii.”

In a very recent article that I read on AgWeb.com, I came to a realization.  Living in Kentucky, it is easy to forget that farming isn’t something that is easily thriving in all parts of the United States. The article on AgWeb.com ( http://www.agweb.com/article/as-los-angeles-grew-up-its-agriculture-school-got-squeezed-out-associated-press/ ) was talking about a college in Los Angeles, California that was once known for their agriculture. Pierce College was founded in 1947 and sits on 426 acres of land in the western part of San Fernando Valley. The campus has 2,000 plus trees, a boat load of rose bushes, and a forest area filled with redwoods. All of this makes Pierce College unique because they sit in a metropolitan area. Pierce College still has a 226 acre farm with an equestrian center, cattle, sheep, and goats. Agriculture still may seem like a big deal by what you read about PC, but according the AgWeb article and The Los Angeles Times they cut their agriculture instructors from 18 to only four.

“Experts say that reflects a trend at colleges across the country, where agricultural programs are putting less emphasis on farming and more on such related fields as food science, farming technology and nutrition.” This is a quote from the AgWeb article, and honestly, I’m not really sure exactly how I feel about it. I do believe learning the technology and knowing what you are growing is important, but I also believe that “farming” should be taught as well. Not only do we need to know how to use the new technology, we need to know how to manage a farm, keep crops and animals alive, and actually make a living.

“”Every institution has to be relevant, and it’s more sexy to talk about nutrition than sows, cows and plows,” Keith Barber, president of the National Agricultural Alumni Development Association, told the Times.”” Maybe it is more “sexy” to talk about nutrition. but how can you do that without sows, cows, and plows? Nutrition comes from what we eat…  Sows equal pork, cows equal beef, and plows equal a whole lot of crops. Maybe I just over think things, maybe Barber wasn’t saying anything negative about agriculture, or I might just believe that if you’re going to teach one thing you may as well teach it all.

“Shapiro, 61, learned to milk cows as a child, a time when Los Angeles was still dotted with dairy farms. He’s the school’s only full-time instructor who still teaches how to grow crops, and he worries that when he retires he won’t be replaced.

“And I can’t stand that idea,” he says.” This is also an excerpt from the article and this is what really got to me. Agriculture could soon turn into a dying art that is replaced with concrete, tall buildings, and a whole lot of people. What will we do then?

Just because a city is growing and populating, it doesn’t mean farming and agriculture has to shrink and become unimportant. Agriculture stretches from the state of Alaska all the way down to Puerto Rico and from the state of Maine to Hawaii, just as FFA Reporters state in every meeting. From the biggest cities to the tiniest of towns, agriculture will always have an impact as long as we don’t pretend that is an irrelevant topic that does not need to be taught.

 

Shuffle Your Music Saturday

Hey! I’m back with my second “Shuffle Your Music Saturday”! I think this may be one of my favorite things I do with this blog, because it is just fun and simple! Before I get started, how about those Wildcats taking down the Cardinals?! I am one proud UK fan today! CATurday is always a good day. Anyway, on to the music.

1.) Southern Comfort Zone – Brad Paisley

2.) Boom Clap – Charli XCX

3.) Beachin’ – Jake Owen

(How nice beachin’ sounds right now, I am so ready for the spring and summer.)

4.)  Barefoot and Buckwild – Lauren Alaina

(Yet another summery song, is my phone trying to make me sad??)

5.) See You When I See You – Jason Aldean

6.) Applause – Lady GaGa

7.) Chicks Dig It – Chris Cagle

8.) Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye – Luke Bryan

9.) Sweet – Toby Keith

(Don’t ask me why, but whenever I was little I LOVED this song, a lot.)

10.) Really Don’t Care – Demi Lovato ft. Cher Lloyd

Alright, that is it for this Saturday! Get ready for a new ag post Tuesday and another music shufflin’ post Saturday!

One more time, GO CATS! 😉

 

#goFFA

Okay, I know I haven’t posted in over a month, but I blame that on National FFA convention, dance team, and starting a new job. I’m back now and ready to post weekly! This week, I couldn’t bring myself to write about anything else BUT my time at the 87th Annual National FFA Convention in Louisville, Kentucky. So, I wanted to give you all that read my blog more information about FFA and a little bit of background information before I get into my experience at national convention.

The National FFA convention is ran by a board of directors and six national officers. This organization that I can forever say changed my life was founded in 1928 with a mission to prepare our youth for owning and operating their own farm and to be prepared for feeding our growing population. FFA has taught us all that farming isn’t just about planting seeds and harvesting them, it is a way of life.  FFA is still teaching this same concept today. Over the past four years of my life I’ve learned more about agriculture than I ever expected. I also learned what it was like to have people in my life that always had my back, just like family. Being a member of the Future Farmers of America and being a part of my FFAmily is one thing I definitely wouldn’t change about my high school experience.

The 87th annual National FFA Convention, where memories were made and new friendships were created. From getting lost in all the college booths with Amber, to walking a million miles an hour to catch up with our chapter, to just being with some of my favorite people for an entire day, and sitting through  sessions with messages that truly did get to me. That is the only way I would’ve wanted to experience my final convention in a blue jacket as a student.

I’m not here to shove a message of joining FFA down your throat, but I am here to tell you that joining was one of the best choices I have ever made. The experiences you have in that corduroy blue jacket is something that YOU have to experience yourself. Because everyone’s experience is different. Take my word for it and at least sign up for one agriculture class like I did my freshman year. I had no plans to become an FFA member, but here I am. You never know what might happen.

“You may outgrow the jacket, but you can never outgrow the experiences.”

#nationalblueandcorngold #goFFA

Genetically Modified.. What?

GNO? No, GMO’s! We aren’t talking about a Girls Night Out here people, we’re talking about Genetically Modified Organisms. This post was actually inspired by last weeks episode of “Kim of Queens” (side note: this is seriously one of my favorite TV shows!). In last weeks episode Kim, the pageant coach, asked Addison (or Addie), a pageant girl/client, what a GMO was and how she felt about them. This question was to prepare her for an onstage question in one of the pageants she was competing in. Addie had no idea what a GMO was, so I figured many other people don’t know either and that this would be a good blog post topic for me!

First off, what is a GMO? A GMO is a genetically modified organism that have been altered by using genetic engineering techniques. These GMO’s are also the source of genetically modified foods. The cool thing about GMO’s is that they could actually be a really big important tool in feeding the world! Yes, you read right, the WORLD.

In May 2013 Hawaii introduced a bill to ban genetically modified crops. During this bills hearing everything from cancer in rats to the disappearance of butterflies and bees was brought up. This bill would ban the cultivation of any genetically engineered crop on the island, except two of the crops already grown: corn to feed dairy cows and papayas. The papayas weren’t banned because one papaya farmer said GMOs rived his dying crops. In my opinion if it can revive one, why can’t we see if it can save more? Field tests to study new GMO crops would also be prohibited, if you are caught field testing you be fined $1,000 per day. Crazy, right? The ban was approved 6 to 3. How do we know something works without taking a risk? I mean, I had no idea what all it takes to compete in pageants, but hey! I took a risk and look at where I am now!

When you type in “GMO” on a search engine it’s hard to find anything positive about them because everything surrounding the topic seems to be so negative, but positivity is there, I promise! I feel as though the fact the GMOs can create plants that are more resistant to weeds and pests is one of the most important benefits. Let’s take corn for example, corn is one of the most widely grown and most important crops in the USA, but corn can’t reproduce without human aid. Corn is also a very vulnerable crop when it comes to pests. GMOs also give foods a longer shelf life and you get bigger yields of the crop so land is used more efficiently. Lastly, the labor cost is so much cheaper with GMOs. How could we pass up an opportunity to create an essential way to feed the world?

Now I bet you want to know how I would answer the question Kim asked Addison if I was onstage, right? Well, here it goes…
“Personally I believe that just like anything else GMOs have positives and negatives. Not only with GMOs can we produce larger yields of crops like corn, but you get a longer shelf life too! I feel as though we need to give GMOs a fighting chance because with GMOs we could feed the world and do so much more. Thank you.”

There’s my answer! What’s yours? Research things before you form an opinion! Here’s my goal for you guys this week: Research GMOs find the positives and the negatives and comment on this post the answer to the question “What are GMOs and how do you feel about them?”

To all my FFA members reading, IT’S ALMOST NATIONAL CONVENTION TIME! AHH!

A Whole New World… Kinda.

Hi! I know it’s been almost a month since my last post, sorry! I’ve had so many things going on between school, clubs, dance, and pageants I’m not really sure how I even found time to eat. Right now, I’m in a car for the next five hours so that gives me plenty of time to get caught up on blogging!

First, I want to start off with a short update about things I’m going to start doing with my blog. As you all already know, I do a new ag post every Thursday and a fun post on Saturday. On top of that I’m going to be adding another little something on Mondays! Mondays will be “My Town Mondays” where I will go to some of my friends and families farms around my town, ask them a few questions, and record it all! This will kind of be like a vlog I guess you could say. I’ll have my first “My Town Mondays” video posted next Monday and it will just be of the farm I live on as an introduction! Along with “My Town Mondays” a hashtag, #showoffmykentucky, comes along with it. More info on that next week!

Second, I’m on my way back from our fall break vacation! We went to Toronto, Ontario and to Niagara Falls (Canadian side and American side) along with several other pit stops on the way like; Detroit to see the Motown museum, London, Ontario and Gobblers Knob to see the weather capital of the world aka the place the ground hog either does or doesn’t see his shadow, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to see Abby Lee Dance Company from “Dance Moms” . All of these places were decently sized cities so it was really cool to be able to see something totally different that what I am used to seeing! I’ll post pictures below with some little captions to explain everything that we did!

DON’T FORGET: New ag post tomorrow! I’m so excited for you guys to read my opinion on this topic and to see what your alls thoughts are! Here’s a hint for what the post will be about: GMOs.

IMG_2664.JPG

IMG_2669.JPG

IMG_2682.JPG
These are just some blurry and rainy quick snaps of some the skylines of cities we traveled through on our way to Toronto.

IMG_2695.JPG
First pitstop, West Grand Boulevard in Detroit to see the Motown Museum!

IMG_2704.JPG

IMG_2702.JPG

IMG_2709.JPG
Theses are just shots from downtown Detroit!

IMG_2765-1.PNG
Our first day in Toronto I got to see Casa Loma, it was so cool to be inside a real castle!

IMG_2817.JPG
This is one of the views we got while eating lunch in the CN tower. Getting a 360 view of Ontario was probably one of the coolest parts of the trip.

IMG_2894.JPG

IMG_3025.JPG

IMG_3010.JPG

IMG_2982.JPG

IMG_2952.JPG

IMG_2929.JPG

IMG_2962.JPG
Niagara Falls! We took a boat ride on the Maid of the Mist and got to get right beside the falls, such a cool thing to do!

IMG_3034.JPG

IMG_3042.JPG

IMG_3039.JPG

IMG_3062.PNG
Gobblers Knob, ALDC, and Pittsburgh!

Where Were You?

We all have that one song that makes us feel patriotic. One of those songs for me is “Where Were You When The World Stopped Turning?” by Alan Jackson. I know that it’s Thursday and Thursdays are agriculture post days, but I just couldn’t do it on this day.

For those who are old enough to remember, I’m sure we all know exactly what we were doing 13 years ago today. I was only four so my memory of this day is pretty foggy. According my mom, we were out doing something in my town and my dad called her and asked if we were watching the news. After that call she turned it on and couldn’t believe what she was hearing. Obviously, me being four, I had no idea that our country had fallen under attack for the first time in a VERY long time. That night, when my dad got home, I remember sitting on the couch with my parents and watching the coverage. I vaguely remember feeling a little scared because of the news anchors crying, but more so confused. I mean, being so little and trying to figure out what a terrorist attack was probably wasn’t the easiest thing. In my living room with my parents was where I was when the world stopped turning 13 years ago.

After the 9/11 attack happened, I remember all of the patriotic songs that came out, especially in country music. One that was released was by my favorite country artist, Toby Keith. If you listen to “Courtesy of the Red, White, and Blue” and you don’t feel a surge of patriotism come out, I don’t know what to tell you. Many other songs about 9/11 were released by other artists as well.

The attack on the twin towers and pentagon was supposed to bring our country down, but it brought our country together and we became stronger. Here is a line from “Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning”: “Faith, hope, and love are some good things He gave us, but the greatest is love.” During and after this attack, we, as a country, had to experience all three. We needed faith so God would keep our country, soldiers, and loved ones safe. We needed hope so all of this would pass and our country would be able to handle this battle. Finally, we needed love. Just like it was said in the song, love IS the greatest….love of our family, friends, and country.

Now that you know where I was when the world stopped turning, where were you? Next Thursday look for a new post. In the mean time learn something new about agriculture and let me know what you were doing 13 years ago on 9/11/2001.

IMG_2002.JPG

God bless the USA. ❤️💙🇺🇸

Shuffle Your Music Saturday

The more of my posts you read the more you will learn how much I love music. I know this is mainly an agriculture blog, but we can’t be serious all the time, right? So, from here on out every Saturday I will be shuffling my music on my iPod and posting the first ten that play here. I’ll also include a YouTube link to each song, incase you’ve never heard them. So sit back, relax, and listen to some music.

1. Check Yes or No- George Straight

2. Ain’t Goin’ Down ’till the Sun Comes Up- Garth Brooks
Okay, so no YouTube link for this one, but I’m sure many of you have heard it.

3. Marry You- Bruno Mars

4. 1994- Jason Aldean

5. Carolina- Parmalee

6. Someone Like You- Adele

7. I Don’t Dance- Lee Brice

8. Shameless- Garth Brooks
Again, no video link for this one.

9. Pour Some Sugar On Me- Def Leppard

10. Pray About Everything- Luke Bryan

Okay, well there’s that for my first “Shuffle Your Music Saturday”! If you read this you shuffle your music and comment the first ten songs that play! New Ag post next Thursday! I hope your Saturday is spent relaxed with family, fun, and football! I know mine will be! Go Cats!

Stop, Hatin on Ag is Bad.

Welcome to the bluegrass state, known for fast horses, even faster cars, family reunions, friends and of course food. Where does that food come from though? Farms of course! Don’t let the media fool ya, not all of the food you eat comes from factory
farms.

Well, in my Animal Technology class today we started watching the documentary “Food Inc.” (how much this documentary aggravated me only 30 minutes in is for another day). In “Food Inc.” they mentioned how quickly chickens are grown now and how much bigger they are. Is that change in growing due to factory farms? No, not necessarily. Let’s take a look at humans, why do males in Germany have a taller average height than males in the United States? Genetics. A good change in genetics and reproduction is why chickens are now larger and grow faster than they did 50 some years ago. There are trained people who study genetics and can figure out how to make these changes happen.

Another thing that was mentioned in the documentary was how dangerous having the job of meat packing was. The number one most dangerous job to be exact. Now, I don’t know about you… But for some reason I feel like there are a lot more dangerous jobs in this world. Maybe dealing with electrical lines? What about being a firefighter? So I decided to do a little research. According to forbes.com logging workers actually have the most dangerous job. Which makes complete sense to me, I mean I do know someone who logs and has at least three of his fingers missing. Do we know any meat packers missing fingers? Chances are, probably not. I’ll include a screenshot of the list of top 10 most dangerous jobs and you can see for yourself that meat packing isn’t listed anywhere.

The final thing I want to talk about that aggravated me was how the PETA videos were used. PETA commercials and videos already make me mad enough because so much is false and staged. One of the videos “Food Inc.” used was a pig slaughter house video. In this particular video they used it looked as though the pigs were all squished together and trapped to be slaughtered in a very painful, awful way. Pigs are killed by an electric bolt to the head causing instant death. No pain. No suffering. Shoutout to yet another anti-ag group for making everything look a lot worse than what it really is.

Okay, that’s all I really have to say so far. Be expecting a part two of my thoughts on “Food Inc.” once we finish watching the documentary. Don’t forget to tell people about my blog and learn about the land of Agriculture and where your food ACTUALLY comes from. Until next week, y’all.

#nationalblueandcorngold

IMG_1726.PNG
Here’s the list of the top ten dangerous jobs. (Where is meat processing, again?)

I couldn’t find the clip of the pig video by itself on YouTube, but you can find the “Food Inc.” documentary on YouTube and the clip is shown around the one hour mark.