SOCIAL MEDIA

8.30.2017

Hurricane Harvey: How to Help


The disaster in Texas has been weighing really heavily on me the past few days. There are so many people hurting, people who have lost everything, people who don't know where family members are, people who need help.

It has been so refreshing to see how Americans have come together to support the victims. I have heard so many wonderful stories and seen so many incredible posts on social media that are truly inspiring. It is a shame that it takes such tragedy to make us take a stand for one another, but it just shows that no matter how anyone tries to portray our country these days, the American spirit is alive and well in most citizens.

I think it is interesting for kids/adults-in-training my age because we haven't seen anything like this happen since 2005. We remember everything that happened, but most of us weren't yet able to wrap our minds around the devastation that Hurricane Katrina caused. Whether or not Harvey's impact ranks with Katrina's, it is still the first major hurricane to make landfall in the U.S. in 12 years. The images that are coming out of Texas are heartbreaking.


All photos courtesy of the NY Times.

Luckily, there are many ways for us to help the victims- a lot of ways made possible by social media and technology. We can thank God for blessing us with it in times like these, for sure! I would strongly encourage everyone to do something. The semi-annual Lilly Pulitzer sale started Monday. If you are able to purchase a $60 dress (on sale, no less) you have money to give to the relief efforts. I know that we aren't made out of money, but there are other way to get involved.
  1. Give blood. The American Red Cross has a website where you can see blood drives near you.
  2. Adopt a school in Houston. The ECU College of Education has started collecting funds to donate to schools in need of new supplies. Katrina severely affected many students, putting them out of school for months and even years. Let's do what we can to not let such a tragedy affect children's educations.
  3. Volunteer. Organizations like Heart to Heart are looking for people to help administer aid to hurricane victims.
  4. Find a supply drive. If you don't want to donate money, give tangible items. There are hundreds of supply drives happening around the country. This one in Clayton is loading up a tractor trailer departing for Texas on Sunday. 
  5. Texas Forever t-shirt. Magnolia Market (i.e. Chip and Joanna of Fixer Upper fame!) is selling these Texas Forever t-shirts to benefit the relief efforts. This is for all of those Friday Night Lights fans out there! (I bought one!) There are other companies selling benefit t-shirts as well.
  6. Shop on Amazon. Yes, really! Lots of groups have started Amazon wishlists for desperately needed supplies. Check out a list of organizations and links to their wishlists here.
  7. Help the animals. Don't forget about the pets affected by Harvey. Giving to organizations such as the Houston Humane Society and Houston SPCA can make a difference.
  8. GoFundMe. There is an aggregate page of all the campaigns raising money here.
  9. Support the agriculture community. Farmers and ranchers have lost their livelihoods, as well. Give to organizations such as the State of Texas Agriculture Relief Fund. Other private campaigns are out there to help farming families. 
Do what you can with what you have, y'all. Go out and spread good!

8.28.2017

Happy Place













              








             






 




             




8.25.2017

When It Comes to Ag, Culver's Gets It Right

My family and I was recently in Charlotte and saw a restaurant next to IKEA that we had never tried before- Culver's. We decided to grab a bite to eat. After all, who can turn down frozen custard? Well, at least my dad and I can't.

Upon walking in, there were a few things that caught my attention: a few really cute paintings of roosters and other farm animals that I would love to have in my apartment and a whole lot of pro-agriculture information! A note on the door, a framed statement on the wall, the side of the kid's meal bag... Everything about the place said, "We love farmers!" and I knew I was in the right place.




You see, so many companies these days have turned to criticizing (and worse) the methods farmers use to produce our food. I welcome debate and peaceful disagreement, but many companies (looking at you, Chipotle) use tactics that scare consumers away from conventionally produced food. Here's what you need to know about conventional agriculture and food:

IT. IS. SAFE.

If you would rather eat organic food, that's great and I respect that choice! But don't think it is any safer, or healthier, for that matter, than conventional food. Because it's not

Conventional food is safe and healthy. Conventional food is safe and healthy. Conventional food is safe and healthy. I will say it until I'm blue in the face. 

By claiming things like "organic is better for you" or "conventional farming is ruining the environment," companies are planting very dangerous and false ideas into consumers head. They are teaching people that farmers and agriculturalists have no regard for human or environmental health, when the exact opposite is true. 

To see a restaurant thanking farmers for their hard work and what they provide us with is so encouraging. They are spreading a message that says "Farmers work hard to give us an abundant and healthy food supply," which is true. Their message takes out debate and disagreement and says that no matter what you believe or choose to purchase, farmers are working hard for you.

So, Culver's- thank you. Thank you for supporting those that put in countless hours of blood, sweat, and tears to put food on America's tables. Thank you for getting it right when it comes to agriculture in a world that is quick to demonize it. Thank you for your commitment to agriculture education so we can raise a generation that is grateful for our agriculturalists and agricultural community!

Check out Culver's commitment to America's farm families here!

Find your closest Culver's here- if you're close go check it out! Their burgers are pretty darn good!

(P.S. This post is not sponsored or anything like that! I was just compelled to publicly thank a company for their commitment to agriculture!)

8.04.2017

Five on Friday: Vol. 4

Happy Friday! I had a short week coming off of a long weekend (but still working full-time!) so it has been an exhausting one. Moving in and getting settled at my apartment, ensuring I left everything in good shape at home, preparing for a busier season at work... it's been crazy! Good thing I work well under pressure.

I rounded up a few things that I love this week- enjoy!

ONE // The Day the Fire Came
We're starting off with a really sad one this week, folks. Seriously, I was tearing up at my desk at work when I read this article. It tells the story of the 3 people who died in the massive fires in the Great Plains this past spring. Sloan Everett, Cody Crockett, and Cody's girlfriend Sydney Wallace set out to move cattle on the Franklin Ranch out of the fire's path. They saved all but three calves, but they themselves didn't survive. The article is tough to read, but so beautifully written. It is worth a read, if only to attempt to understand the love ranchers have for their animals and what they are willing to sacrifice for their well-being.

TWO // KISS Calf
Let's lighten it up a bit with this calf who looks just like KISS's Gene Simmons! Luckily for the calf, it won't be harvested, but was instead designated the steakhouse mascot. It's name? Genie.

THREE // Maine Lobstermen Rescue Bald Eagle
Speaking of lucky days, this bald eagle in Maine was rescued by two lobstermen who came upon it stranded in the water. They brought it on to their boat where it rested and finally took off- towards land! Bald Eagles are very susceptible to hypothermia when wet, so it was truly a blessing they came across it.

FOUR // Pioneer Woman Grilled Veggie and Cream Cheese Sandwich
After looking at this recipe, I texted my mom saying that I need a grill pan. She replied that she gave me one. I'll take your word for it mom. I'll also take Ree's word that this sandwich is super simple and divine! I'm definitely going to have to try it out.

FIVE // How I feel this week...


Gotta love beagles, right friends?

And with that, have a wonderful weekend!

8.02.2017

One Year

One year ago today, I let a really nice boy, who also happened to be one of my best friends, take me to dinner at the Raleigh Times. It was a rainy Tuesday night and the restaurant had a menu styled like a newspaper. The "headline," though dated for December 10, 1912, read:

THE WEATHER: RAIN. RALEIGH, N.C., TUESDAY AFTERNOON.

That really has nothing to do with my story, but we thought it was cool and if there's a such thing as an omen, I guess you could call that one. By the end of the night, we were officially dating. I was scared to say yes- so much so that I had previously said no twice before. (I gave him a really tough time.) I don't know what I was scared of because I feel the most myself with Harrison than I ever have. I tend to be the opposite of lovey-dovey, especially in public/on social media, but I'll put that aside just for a moment.

Harrison, you are a light to me in so many ways. A lighthouse guiding me when I don't know what to do. A yellow-glowing porchlight that feels like home. A sunrise full of potential and a sunset full of memories. A light from within that brings joy and peace and comfort. You are my greatest adventure, my best friend, and my biggest supporter. You go out of your way for me consistently and I could never thank you enough for everything you've done and continue to do for me. I love, love, love you!