Monday, June 10, 2013

Accidently Illinois Bound..

So I guess it's about time I get my butt back in blogging gear since I've taken an accidental break for the last couple months. But I do some pretty exciting news to share

I guess I'll start with the fact that I finished my senior year of college which my parents are thankful for! I'm not done yet though.. one more semester (hopefully, fingers crossed) which i'm fine with, from what I've heard the grown-up life isn't all it's cracked up to be.

When I was finishing up this year I had no idea what I was going to do this summer, I had applied for an internship with Midwest Dairy Association (MDA) in Kansas City,  got the dreaded "you were so great but we offered the position to someone else" and I just figured it wasn't meant to be. The lady with Midwest did said that she had forwarded my application to her counter part in Illinois and asked if that was okay with me. I said sure not really thinking too much of it. It was literally finals week and I got a phone call one morning. It was the MDA rep from Illinois calling to see if I was interested in the internship, with a little consideration I said sure, why not.

I'm not quite sure if when I said yes to this internship that I realized that I would have to live in Illinois for the summer.. a good 8 hours from Nebraska. After a few phone calls with my future boss, I packed up my car and headed East with very little idea of what I was doing. To give you a clue on how unprepared I actually was for this I didn't have a place to live yet when I got in the car the morning that I was Illinois bound, for some reason that didn't' seem to bother me (it seemed to bother other people more than me).

My box that i was going to live in while in Illinois

Luckily it worked out really well and I found a decent apartment in Springfield with a cool roommate. I've been here for a little over a week and have already done some really cool stuff!
Proof that I did actually make it Illinois
First night in the new apartment, the whole street flooded.
We found a mattress floating down the street so
we decided to go for a ride! 
Got to attend some meetings with the Illinois Milk Producers Association and Illinois Ag in the Classroom.

FBI building my meeting was in.. SO COOL! 

My favorite was attending a meeting at the FBI headquarters here in Springfield. They have a work group consisting of different individuals with connections and influence over different Ag industries in the state. We talked about different things on the terrorist radar for the FBI and different possibilities for Agro-terrorism and different ways that could be prevented. Coolest part of the whole meeting was going through all the security (dorky I know!) and that all the agents in the building had guns they carried with them.. SWEET RIGHT?! I wanted to ask if I could see their guns but I don't really wanna end up in jail during this internship so I decided against that idea.

So lucky for you all you'll be hearing a lot more about my adventures here in Illinois and it's even more exciting because JUNE IS DAIRY MONTH! WOOHOO.. pretty exciting so look back for more blogs soon!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Jack of our Hearts

Everyone knows football in Nebraska is kind of a big deal.. DUH. They drew 60,000 fans for their spring game this last Saturday, people enjoy going because Nebraska wins. The usual talk after the spring game is how Taylor Martinez looked, how the running backs look to do without Rex Burkhead, or if the Offensive and Deffensive lines could look more aggressive this year (lets pray!). There has been no such talk this year, not one mention. because something even more amazing happened... a slight return of faith in humanity and college athletics. In recent years we have seen college athletics really go down hill, football especially, problems with drugs, grades, staff, etc.  However, Husker nation has once again found a reason to be so very proud of this program and this university.

Meet Jack Hoffman, if you're a Husker fan you've heard of him I'm sure and he's won over your heart. He's a six year old that has been battling pediatric brain cancer for about 2 years. He was born and raised in Nebraska and found a passion for football just like any one else in this state. His favorite player was always Rex Burkhead and got the chance to meet him in 2011. Every since then Jack has been seen hanging around with Rex and the team at various games and events. He's also beloved by Husker fans all over the world, they sell 'Team Jack' t-shirts, as you can see from their facebook page, people love wearing them.

Well on Saturday Jack and the football team had a little surprise for fans.. I'll just let you watch the video to find out what happened.

Simply amazing! This is just one of the many reasons I'm a Husker fan.. how can you not be? Spring games are usually not remembered but I assure you this one will be for a long time! It was the game that the good of the team was put second to one little boy and his cause.. inspiring! 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Ag Day

Yesterday, Tuesday, I got to do one of my favorite thing.. AGVOCATE of course. I was asked by our state Midwest Dairy rep to talk about dairy to the students that were attending the Ag Day. 
Here is a link for an article about the event!

I talked at this same event last year to nearly 400 students and was impressed with the turnout and the event in general. They said last year the event numbers were down due to school district budget cuts and not having the funding for busing. So the organizers of the event decided to make a short video about what kids experience during the event. They sent the video out to anyone in that area who had influence over school planning and budgeting. Clearly it worked! This year there were nearly 850 students who attended! That is purely amazing! Many had no idea about what the difference between a dairy and beef cow were or that there are quite an array of products in the grocery store that are made from milk, but that's what they were there to learn!

Of course my favorite part of any event like this is the questions

One of the MANY classes I spoke with

*When I asked what products at the grocery store were made from milk these are a few of the answers I got - "cake", "bacon" "eggs" (this was a common answer), "bread"  so needless to say the Aggie in me had to give them a quick lesson on where those things actually come from

 * how exactly cows turned water and feed into milk.. this one stumped me

*how come cows drink milk to make milk 

*a few arguments on whether we can milk bulls 

*a few class discussions on what that "thing sticking out of that cows butt is" - turns out they were talking about the udder... who knew?! 

So after nearly 40 presentations I was dairy'ed out and ready for a nap, but all-in-all it was a success, hopefully those kids learned something!

I used the video to help start discussion
and questions.

~Lastly, here is a video that I love to use when I present about modern dairy farms. The kids really enjoy this video, it does a great job keeping their attention and giving them the important general facts! 

Wordless Wednesday

Life lessons from a calf: don't forget your coat and
don't go out into the cold if you don't have to...

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

New Addition

Myself and Baby Grant.. he's a cutie

So yesterday my family got a little bigger, pretty exciting stuff I know! I got a text yesterday morning at about 9:15 with a picture announcing the arrival of our new cousin,Grant. It was a bit of a surprise because Aunt Carol wasn't supposed to be induced until the night of the 13th. So of course I was so excited I left work early, skipped class and headed to the hospital to see the new little guy.  

I made a quick stop on the way there to pick up a few 'essential' things; a 6 pack of beer, a tub of cheese balls, skittles, Twizzlers, and of course diapers! Now most would be wondering why I picked up beer on the way to the hospital (beer and baby Tuesdays?!) so I'll tell you so you don't assume Carol is a drunk (just fyi, she's not!!). Carol and I had been talking about my 21st birthday from the time I turned 18, however she found out she was pregnant right before my 21st so she wasn't able to attend that disastrous outing. I had joked I would bring her beer to the hospital, and boy was she surprised when I did. So it was a pretty exciting day in that we also had our first beers together, chicken only drank 1/4 of hers: wasn't like she just had a baby 8 hours ago... ohhh wait :).


Big brother Alex and Carol are in the midst of negotiating
at what age Alex can start wrestling his new brother! 
Needless to say it was a pretty awesome day, I got to see her other two boys reaction to seeing their brother for the first time. That happy brotherly bonding moment was over quickly when they realized I brought candy, cheese balls, and that there was free pop down the hall! But the whole thing had me thinking a lot about family and how important it is. Not that this is something new to me but it's something I know I take for granted. Carol and I didn't always have a great relationship growing up; she scared the crap out of me! But that didn't mean she wasn't always there to support me, encourage me to do what I loved, or just share stories. I know that if I asked her she would drop everything to help me out if I needed it, so not a second thought crossed my mind when I decided to leave work early and skip class. Family is something to be celebrated everyday because as we know they won't always be there. I want to be to these boys what Carol was to me (minus all the scariness haha), someone to talk to when Mom and Dad just aren't cool enough. [Mom and Dad you're still cool, don't worry!] Someone to teach them about all the cool things in life; like how to show a dairy calf or where uncle TK keeps his pop and candy stash! How to have a proper rotten tomato fight... the best places to hide when mom and dad come to look for you... the many ways you can annoy your parents... and of course all the tricks to growing up on a farm.

So hopefully this little guy is ready to grow up in the Konecky clan because it's going to be quite the adventure but I know we're all a little excited to see what this little guy is going to do with his life; so much potential, so many places, all with the support of his family! 

Thursday, January 31, 2013

A Pep Talk from Kid President!

I just saw this video yesterday and I absolutely LOVE IT! It has nothing to do with Ag but this kid has a good point, what will you create to make the world awesome?!