Month One

It is hard to believe that one month is already almost here and gone. I am learning and experiencing so much! Linn County has welcomed me with such kindness. What better way to kick off my summer than to attend the National Ag in the Classroom Conference?

As the Linn County Farm Bureau Education Outreach Coordinator, my goal is to increase youth awareness on the importance of agriculture, agriculture careers and the benefits provided by agriculture throughout and individual’s life by providing classroom visits, agriculture days, fair activities and Iowa Core aligned lesson plans.

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“Show Me Agriculture,” took place in Kansas City, Missouri. We made a detour on the way down to stop at Shatto Milk Company. I fell in love with the flavored milk and old-school glass jars. I of course had to try the coffee flavored milk ;). I bought two for the road! Our home has a country chic feel and the bottles add a nice touch.

First thing Wednesday morning we hopped on a bus to tour a few important spots near Kansas City. I always heard about the American Royal but we never had a chance to exhibit in the livestock show so this tour was particularly cool to see. It was neat visiting the museum and livestock arena. The education director showed us the livestock scale. The scale compares and converts human pounds to the equivalent weight in steers, hogs, and chickens.

Who knew there were so many ways to teach agriculture? I attended a few amazing breakout sessions. People from all over the US are just as excited about our future generations as I am :).

The session: Love of Cows and other Joys in Agriculture, encouraged participants to think outside of the box. Brainstorm with art and crafts- how might they be used to inspire and teach youth about where their food comes from? Kathleen shared with us her secrets to drawing the difference between a dairy and beef cow. Can you tell which one this is? Comment below if you have a guess. ๐Ÿ™‚

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I had a first hand experience with making flour! It is such a awesome and simple idea! All you need is wheat seeds, 1 jar, and a pepper grinder. By placing the seeds into the grinder and making flour, many conversations are sparked. What foods can be made from flour? Who grows wheat? and What jobs are created from the production of wheat?

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Many other examples were captured in my journal but I don’t want to give away all of my new ideas! ๐Ÿ˜‰ You will have to keep following to stay up to date!

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As everyone’s spirits were high and motivation was stirring, we were greeted and encouraged by Greg Peterson.

In 2012, Greg founded the “Peterson Farm Brothers” with his siblings. Together they agvocate for agriculture through parody videos, presentations, and blog writing. Checkout all of their awesome videos!!

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Knee High by 4th of July

19030674_10212079687661172_4144279585153507858_nThe once true saying may be true for my delegate yet beautiful plants. Moving back home in May and getting a late start on the garden put us a little behind schedule but as the corn towers over us during fireworks, our little seedlings will hopefully be knee high.

The summer sun has me glistening literally and joyously. Tyler and I have spent the last few weeks attending weddings (Congrats Autumn and Casey <3), painting and moving into our home (a big thanks to our family and friends), helping Megan and Kyle paint, attending Michael’s trap meet, and beginning my career as the Education Outreach Coordinator for Linn County.

I am jumping in feet first and I can’t wait to share many awesome agriculture lessons, activities, and training events with you. Be on the lookout for future career updates! ๐Ÿ™‚ย 19029692_10212079688021181_6382507246201358553_nKnee high by 4th of July seems a little outdated but once upon a time it was used as a benchmark for farmers to detect how well their crop was doing compared to years in the past. Today’s technology provides farmers with the access to different strains, genetically modified crops, and precisely accurate fertilizer amounts.ย 19029417_10212079684941104_8499711684481282613_n

Plant research: Improving each individual plant.

GMOs: Genetically Modified Organisms or biotechnology helps reduce disease and crop loss.

Nitrogen use:ย The goal is to improve yields without increasing applications.

18892949_10212079685301113_8825794125476886628_nYesterday our indoor starter plants were finally ready to be transported to the garden. If you remember, I started Asters, Snapdragons, and Eucalyptus from seeds indoors. The Asters and Eucalyptus didn’t perform very well but the snapdragons took off like crazy.ย 18951324_10212079684421091_1696855253357929774_nHere is a photo of the Zinnias ๐Ÿ™‚

Not only did we plant the indoor seedlings, but we checked out the rest of the garden. Our drip tape is holding up great! The irrigation system gets right to the roots of the plant without there being water loss from evaporation. ย ย 18767480_10212079684181085_3285410691797692294_nAnd look at those Sugar Snap Peas!!

I will be eating GOOD this summer… well by the end of July… haha.