Thursday, September 15, 2011

Canning Salsa: Easy and Yummy!

So for those of you who are my friend on Facebook or follow me on Twitter. You likely saw my posts about getting ready to can salsa. I have never canned anything on my own before. I have also never made salsa before. So it was a good night for two new things.

I have wanted to venture into canning for some time. I already freeze a lot of things during the spring and summer months for the rest of the year, but I really wanted to can some things this year as well. I borrowed my friend Lyssa's canning book, took some notes, and then thought I would give it a try. I really wanted to can this year to have some things to share with people during the holidays as well. A lot of times there are people I would just like to send a small gift to say we're thinking about you and hope all is well. What better gift than a yummy can of jam or salsa?

I love, love chips and salsa. Most people I know do! I'm a little picky about my salsa. I will actually, for the most part eat any kind, but I really, really love restaurant style salsa. There is just something about it that makes me want to eat chips and salsa from restaurant every night!

Issues with canning salsa: canning is a way to preserve food. Salsa is a little tough when it comes to making sure that you have everything sealed and canned correctly to avoid bacteria growth because of the variety of acid levels. So, make sure you look at a canning guide to help you better understand the canning process. Or you could just eat it all as you make it. Then you wouldn't have to worry!

My 1st Salsa Canning Experince
First, I got all of the materials together from the recipe. I used a restaurant salsa recipe from The Pioneer Woman.  Check out her site for lots of neat stuff and some really, really great recipes.
You can see I used already canned tomatoes instead of fresh. You can use fresh tomatoes if you have plenty, but we didn't.

I was surprise at how inexpensive salsa was to make. Salsa in the store isn't that expensive, but we could go through an entire jar in one sitting in our house. So, I was pleased to know how little it cost for me to actually make it now (and fast).

I don't have an official food processor, but I have a Ninja which basically does the same thing. I have one that is for about 3 cups and one for 6 cups. The 6 cup container is shown. The recipe says this make "a lot" of salsa. "A lot" is in the eye of the beholder. I suppose it was a lot if you were preparing it for one meal, but for canning it really wasn't that much. But I did mix all of my ingredients first in a big bowl before putting it in the ninja and did two batches and then mixed them, because I didn't want the ninja to overflow or explode.

I just love how pretty all the ingredients look. Using lime or lemon juice is really important in the recipe. It calls for half a lime but I used the entire lime for canning purposes. Most store salsas contain vinegar for preservation purposes. Lime or lemon juice can also be used. This helps with the acid levels so that bacteria doesn't grow in the can. You can read up on all of that here. Trust me, you want to make sure you get that part right!
Part of the recipe calls for onions. I know a lot of people don't like onions, but they add a really great flavor to the salsa. So, I definitely recommend getting at least a few in there.
Then I stirred the ingredients in the bowl and then emptied half into the processor or in my case the ninja. I pulsed it about 10-15 times. I found that after my first taste test, my batch really needed more salt.

Taste testing is crucial. Make sure you have something you like. If not, there are a few things you can do to tweak it. I taste tested a lot :)

Then, it was on to canning. I put some salsa away for use for dinner that night. I cleaned as I cooked and making all this salsa literally took me less than 10 minutes. Who knew?!

I don't have a lot of the proper canning tools, but I used what I have and so can you!
I cleaned and sterilized all of my cans and lids. Instead of a big boiler, I used my biggest pot and lid. I only made three cans. So, it wasn't that big of an issue.

You'll also want to make sure you have something to get your cans out of the "water bath". They'll be really hot. I used these cooking tongs. They actually make canning tongs though.
I filled each can almost to the top, carefully avoiding a spill on the rim. If you do, just wipe it clean. Then, I placed the lids on and fastened the top tightly. After that, I submerged them in almost boiling water and brought the water to a boil for 25-30 minutes. Afterwards, I removed them with the tongs and placed them out to cool and dry.
They are actually on a cooling tray so that air can flow all around them. I read that tip somewhere. Make sure that if you are using the lids that click down on top that it is actually clicked in. If not, your can likely isn't sealed correctly. You might want to just go ahead and eat that one or at least store it in the refrigerator. I also read that you could try to reprocess and re-can that one after 24 hours.

Then, I decided to decorate one of the cans for a friend of ours who volunteered to be a taste-tester. I'm not sure if I have mastered the art of canning yet, but the salsa tasted really good. It was so simple and inexpensive to make and beat store salsa a million to one!

Let me know if you try it and if you enjoy the salsa recipe. I am also looking to try some new ideas. Let me know what you tried and how it tastes!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Football Time in Tennessee

There are not many things I look forward to more than fall. School starts again, the weather cools off, the leaves turn the most beautiful colors, pumpkin patches open, and the Tennessee Vols run through the Power T and Knoxville becomes one of the greatest places to be in the world!

Tailgating at the Twister

On the field after putting out poms for Orange Nation.

Tailgating our last season in college together.

Today, I started thinking about whether it's the football I really love, the leaves, the tailgating and friendship or just the change of pace? And then I ran into a blog post that put it all into perspective for me. All of the things mentioned are part of my life here in the South. Not all regions of the US get to experience fall weather, the scenery, the football traditions, or even the pumpkin patches. I love the fall because I'm from the south and what's not to love about fall in the south?

Here's hoping you have a great Labor Day weekend!
If you're wondering about the inspiration check out the link below!

Monday, August 29, 2011

These are a few of my favorite things...

Today, I have had a few extra minutes during lunch to enjoy catching up at some of my favorite blogs and finding a few new ones. I wanted to share a few of my favorite girly blogs with you in the hope that you would enjoy them as well. The topics of these blogs range from DIY decor, smart shopping sense, how to be a good wife and parent, menu planning, new recipe ideas, faith, social media, and so much more. I hope you will enjoy!

For all things southern:

For social media tips:

All my favorite DIY things:

Being a good wife and mama:

Frugal living and great shopping habits:

All things girly, pink, and princess:


I hope those will keep you busy and interested for the week and plenty of time to come! There are definitely tons of great information and ideas on those blogs!

Happy reading :)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

I love bridal showers!!!

I of course love everything DIY! Well, when I have time that is! I get the chance to do a little extra "playing" when it's time to host a bridal shower for one of my friends. I wanted to share some photos from Lindsay's bridal shower in June and beautiful July wedding! I think I am lucky to have such beautiful friends on the inside and out that allow me to be a part of their day :)

This is Lindsay the beautiful bride!

The entry table at Lindsay's shower had wedding mints and personalized Jordan almond favors for her guests.

The coffee filter foof I learned to make from Jones Design Company Blog - she has a million cute things!

Gorgeous hydrangeas in an antique vase Chris helped me find with some cute personalized decorations hung with clothespin. I just LOVE clothespins!

Yummy food my Mom and Lindsay's Aunt Carla helped to prepare.

Antique blue mason jars for the forks - so adorable!

More pictures of the bride and grooms with some clothespin decorations that Ashley (my co shower host) helped make.

The flowers were just too pretty not to show you this shot!

Now onto the wedding!!!
Lindsay and Kenton had a beautiful outdoor ceremony at the farm where they are going to live. Even though it was July, it wasn't too hot to enjoy the beauty that was everywhere around us. Kenton and Lindsay are perfect for each other because they really seem to already understand what it's like to work together and appreciate the other person. I really think that Lindsay and Kenton bring out the best in one another.

Getting ready! Our friend Melissa helped Lindsay get gorgeous, as if she needed any help with that.

The car Lindsay's dad drove her to the ceremony in - and it looked stunning!

Lindsay and Kenton's Farm - where the wedding was held.

Have you ever seen a more gorgeous bride?

Best friends.

A cute shot I snapped after the ceremony while we were cooling off inside for a second before some more pictures!

Thanks for letting me be a part of your special day, and especially for asking me to make a toast at the reception. I am so honored to be your friend and to have gotten to stand beside you on this day! I love you both very much and am so excited that you are finally MARRIED!!!!

Monday, July 25, 2011

We're Selling Our House!

Are you interested in buying a condo or know anyone who is? We are finally making the big push to sell our condo in North Knoxville to relocate to a more permanent home closer to Chris's job. Instead of driving 50 minutes each way every single day, he'll now drive about 15!

Our condo in Knoxville has been the perfect first home for us. I am sad to sell, pack up, and leave. However, I am excited for new opportunities at a bigger home with a yard :) I am certain that our home will be a perfect fit for another couple or a few college students looking to get away from the noise of campus.

So, pass along the word!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

For My Ag Ed Friends

I was helping a student develop a case study/project he could use for final project developing a lesson plan for agriculture education last week and developed this rough case study. You could vamp it up a little or use as is if you think it would be helpful for students. I think it would be great for a freshman or sophomore level class. It requires use of the scientific process to evaluate an income/marketing issue on a farm and then requires the students to present a marketing plan to help the farm.

Grannie's Greenhouse
Grannie’s Greenhouse is located in a rural area.  It is a family run business in conjunction to a farm. They have been operating three greenhouses on their property for over 10 years. Update costs in the last two years have been very expensive. The farm breaks even and usually makes slight profits based on the farm operation from year to year but counts on the greenhouses for their additional income and profit.  During the last two years sales have significantly declined. Grannie’s Greenhouse would like to hire you to help them understand any issues they are having and to develop a new marketing plan.

Here are some things to know about Grannie’s:

Farm and Greenhouse
Grannie’s family farm grows peaches, apples, plums, and hay. They also make many homemade products which are sold off the farm at several farmers markets.
Three greenhouses that grow ferns, annuals, and some starter vegetables
The greenhouses usually combine for an income of $10,000 per year.
The past two years have only provided $6,000 and $4,000 each year.
Two years ago a Lowe’s was built between the interstate major traffic and Grannie’s.
Grannie’s does not want to change much about their farm production products.
Grannie’s has a $5,000 budget for the marketing plan that you team develops.  (Plus the cost of your firm.)

Use the scientific process to work your way through this case study.
What is the problem?
What does your research tell you?
What do you hypothesize? What are your intended results?
What is your planned procedure?
What materials do you need? (At what costs?)
When will your “experiment” time occur for this plan?
How will you analyze results? What is you evaluation method?
Share the results with others
Then develop a marketing plan based on the given information that you would share with the owners of Grannie’s. (Based on National FFA Marketing Plan CDE Scoring)
1.     Analysis of market – “Where are we now?” “Why were we hired?” (10 points)
a. Industry trends.
b. Buyer profile and behavior.
c. Competition’s strengths and weakness.
d. Your product’s/firm’s strengths and weakness.
e. Original research results.

2.     Business Proposition – “Where do we want to be?” (5 points)
a. Key planning assumptions. (cite sources of information)
b. Measurable and attainable goals – must be measurable, have completion dates, be specific and attainable.
c. Target market – identify specific market segments which achieve your goals.

      3. Strategies and Action Plan – How and when will we get there? (10 points)
a. Product attributes: size, quality, service, etc.
b. How will you distribute and sell?
1) marketing channels
2) physical distribution modes
c. What will be the price structure?
d. How will you promote the products? Which promotional activities, or combinations of activities, are appropriate for your product or service? How much promotion can you afford?
1) personal selling
2) direct sales promotion
3) public relations
4) advertising – mass media
e. Develop a mission statement and predict competitor reactions, if any.

       4. Projected budget – “How much will it cost to get there?” (5 points)
a. What will be strategies cost?
b. Pro forma income statement which highlights cost of the strategies on an incremental or start-up basis.
c. Calculate the financial return of the marketing plan

5. Evaluation – “Did we get there?” (5 points)
a. Specific measurement tools to measure the accomplishments of the goals

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Why do I like to teach?

For awhile now I have been contemplating why it is that I like to teach? Where did I "learn to teach"? I've been thinking about these questions for a few weeks now in an attempt to prepare for a course I will be teaching in the Fall. I will be teaching a course on teaching methods for future high school agriculture teachers. I LOVE being creative in the classroom, engaging all students, and finding ways to make what is normally a boring lecture fun and interactive.
I plan on sharing my personal style with students but also encouraging them to find what works for them, the subject area, content, and classroom. That made me start to think about a lot of teachers I have experienced in my nearly 20 years of being a student. I have had teachers with a variety of teaching styles. Some I really enjoyed and some were a little boring to me, but I still learned either way. Again, I was a nerd who pursued learning and education, but none the less I learned something from each of them, even if their style was not the style I enjoyed most.
Where did I get my style of teaching? Why do I like to keep students engaged in activities? How is it that I can think of activities that are outside the box (or so my husband and students think)? I started to think about my first educational experiences.... Kindergarten right? Nope. It must have been my daycare then? Nope. Wrong again. My first experiences in a classroom were at church!!! And guess who my teacher was? My mom!
My mother taught my Sunday School class and often my Vacation Bible School class for a lot of my childhood. I have lots of memories and pictures of fun activities, crafts, and lessons that she came up with for us to do. Sure, almost all of those type events have crafts, games etc. But my mom's always had an extra little twist she created herself. She always had a unique way to tie what we were learning into the project and make it fun for every kid in the room. The funny thing is my mom never went to college and never took a class on how to teach. She just knew. It was something that came natural to her and still does.
So that's why I love to teach! My mom is good at it and taught me through experience in her classroom. I have learned a lot about education and teaching through my college courses and experiences, but it all seems to go back to the passion and drive that my mom instilled in me. Making education fun! I am looking forward to sharing these experiences with my students and hearing about why they are passionate to teach as I lead the teaching methods course in the Fall.
I guess I should thank my mom, even though she wanted me to be a doctor. Thanks mom!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Thankful Thursday: My Job

I am so glad it's time for Thankful Thursday again. It came up really quick this week and right on time.
This week for Thankful Thursday I have something special and new to be thankful for - my job!

Today, I got the go ahead to share that my job is official. I start in August as an instructor here at UT with the ALEC department. That is the department I have been a graduate assistant in for the last two years.
You can see our website here:

I think God's timing is impeccable. Almost two years ago, I chose to pursue a degree in this department instead of staying in the department I received my bachelor's degree in because my heart told me it was the right choice. Not that there is anything wrong with the other department, but it wasn't for me.  A lot of people tried to convince me otherwise. All along the way, I found a million reasons and signs from God that I made the right choice. Do I sometimes still face scrutiny - sure. But my heart is filled, and I am happy! I want to eventually pursue a PhD when the opportunity is right and hopefully in addition to continuing to fill this teaching role in the future.

About two months ago, I got word that the position I will fill could likely become available for me. I was instructed to be patient and think about if it would be something I would be interested in. At the same time, I pursued other interests and especially an interest in a PhD program. Again, listening to my heart, I chose to put the program on hold and pursue this position further. Today, I had my final meeting and was given the okay to announce that I will be staying here at UT with ALEC. It is only a 9 month position that may or may not be renewed at the end of the next school year depending on budget. However, I get the opportunity to do what I love for another 9 months and learn more about teaching at the college level. I feel like I would be crazy to turn down a position that God has been moving and working on for me for the past two years and actually my whole life. It is kind of scary knowing that I could be looking for a job again at this time next year, but more than anything I am THANKFUL. I feel so blessed to have a family who has supported me and a family here at UT who worked hard to help this happen for me.

A big thank you to the CASNR staff who found the money in a budget-tight year to fund a position that truly needed to be created so that our program can continue to grow. A big thank you to the ALEC family for advocating for me and helping this work. Thanks to my former teachers who taught me that education should be fun and creative. AND MOST OF ALL a big thank you to the students who have taken my class and helped me to realize that this is what I love to do more than anything else!

I am looking forward to the challenges this year will bring, meeting new students, learning how to be a better educator and seeing many of my returning students who I know were praying for this for me too (thank you!).
Go VOLS!!!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

"Creative" Meal Monday

For those of you who know me, you know meal planning, getting my monthly groceries at a great price, and only shopping once a month (mostly) is something I take pride in as a wife. This month, I utterly failed. I usually spend between $100-$150 for groceries per month for our house. Some months when there are parties, cookouts, and other events it can get closer to $200, but that is really not usual for us.

I love meal planning, finding great coupons, getting produce at the farmers market instead of the grocery store and finding little ways to save money. However, in May (and it's still not over yet) I did terrible. There seemed to be no plan, I grocery shopped once with coupons, but didn't make a great meal plan list and stick to it. Now it's like every afternoon at work when I think about what I am going to make for dinner at home, I realize I have nothing to make.

Yesterday after work I was exhausted because I worked all day on another draft of the first three chapters of my thesis to give to my graduate committee. I really didn't want to go to the grocery store and knew I had a few odds and ends at home. So, I decided to get creative and this is what I came up with.......

Some sort of Taco/Hash brown Casserole type thingy

I browned a lb of ground beef
Shredded some pepper jack cheese (about a cup)
Peeled and made hash brown style shreds out of three potatoes
Mixed Cajun, chili and red pepper seasoning and salt with a cup of milk (taco seasoning would have been better)

I mixed all of it together and covered with aluminum foil and baked at 350 for 20 minutes
I checked it after 20 minutes and the potatoes were not completely cooked. I covered the top with more cheese and placed the foil back on and baked for another 20 minutes.

Then I crunched some tortilla chips and put them on top and baked for ten more minutes.

I was a little nervous about the flavor and mixture of things - but it seemed like a close match to some homemade Hamburger Helper type stuff. So, I didn't think it could be too bad.

Chris topped it with some salsa we had in the refrigerator and LOVED IT! Creative success!

I steamed some Lima beans on the side because I know Chris loves them.

I hate that I have been slacking so much this month with meal and grocery shopping, but if I hadn't then I wouldn't have gotten creative and discovered something that we may add to our monthly meals!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Thankful Thursday: My Husband

I've decided that in order to keep up the blogging, especially on days when I feel I don't have much to say, I am adopting some themes. Thursday's theme is going to be, "Thankful Thursday".

So for my first Thankful Thursday
Today (and every single day) I am thankful for my wonderful, amazing, thoughtful, handsome husband.
I have known Chris for 7 1/2 years. After our first couple of dates I knew that there were a few things about him that made him a keeper. 1) He went to church. His whole family did. Our beliefs were the same.
2) He loved sports. He was and still is the most athletic and attractive :) person I know.
3) He knew about agriculture too! What a find! Now he wasn't in the FFA but he lived on a farm and that was good enough for me!
4) He had his head screwed on straight and had a plan to finish college. And he's pretty darn smart!
5) He was funny. Really funny and everyone loved to be around him.
6) He didn't sweat the small stuff. And he still doesn't.
7) Every single time I realized again he was actually dating me - I felt like the luckiest girl in the world.

After one of Chris's college basketball games when we dated.

Now some of those amazing characteristics are the same things that I see in myself while others are the complete opposite (the not sweating the small stuff one). But it seems like I almost knew from day one that we would always be together.
Now, we are approaching our one year anniversary in a couple weeks. Nearly 2 years from the day he asked me to marry him and I cannot believe we have been married almost a year.

Seconds after our engagement with our families in Myrtle Beach.
I hear a lot of times that the first year is the hardest. Now, there were a lot of adjustments to be made when living with someone. However, I would never use "hard" to describe our first year of marriage - maybe he would say otherwise. :)
I hope that is a sign of many good years to come.

Now, on to why I am so thankful for him. My husband tells me he loves me every night before bed and kisses me (usually while I am still half zoned out) every morning before he leaves for work. He often helps load or unload the dishes. Sometimes he cooks dinner. He always takes out the trash, washes the car, and eventually puts his clothes in the laundry basket. He is a hard worker. I mean hard. He has put down new floor in our home, on my request. He has refinished furniture, for fun on my request. He has painted rooms, put up hay, built decks and about a million other things. This entire year he has worked to support our family while I finished my master's degree.

Riding scooters in Mexico on our honeymoon, "Dumb and Dumber" style.

The thing it has taken me a while to figure out is that after you get married what LOVE looks like often changes. During our courtship we often found little and big ways to show our affection. We would write letters and mail them to one another, email notes or cards, send flowers, candy and balloons or surprise the other person with a visit or gift. I found myself questioning when many of those things stopped after marriage, "Doesn't my husband love me anymore?" Sure I may get some roses on Valentine's Day or when I remind him that I would like him to buy me flowers but no surprise love notes, spontaneous gifts or displays of affection.

Hiking to Chimney Top in Gatlinburg.
Then I asked myself, "What do I do to ensure that my husband knows that I love him?" Then I answered with cook dinner, wash his clothes, make the bed, make sure the bills are paid on time, clean the house, make our home nice, plan trips, balance our budget, work to finish school and job hunt.
It was then apparent to me that my husband loved me more than I could imagine. We had both just found other ways to show it. I couldn't be more in love or more thankful for the husband the Lord has blessed me with.

So, today for my first Thankful Thursday, I am thankful for my sweet husband, Chris.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Year of Weddings

I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to meet some really amazing women so far in my life. I feel even more honored to be a part of their big day when asked. This year is the year I like to refer to as, "The Year of Weddings".
Yes we are only in April, but I'm on the verge of ordering my third (out of four total so far) bridesmaid dress. Each girl is very unique in style and their dresses reflect them and the style of their big day.

While wedding planning is a big task to say the least, being a bridesmaid is not that easy either. Having to balance several weddings this summer and plan/host showers and girls' getaway weekends really makes me fully appreciate what all of my friends did for me last year in June.

I know it's not easy to find ways to pay for
 gifts, makeup, dresses, showers, events and outings
but all of my bridesmaids and friends did so willingly. For that, I will be forever grateful.
So, today is the first of many blogs to come celebrating finding lifelong friendship in your bridesmaids and lifelong love in your significant other. And here's to me getting to wear some very pretty dresses in the coming year..... preview below

For Lindsay's Wedding in July which will be an outdoor event at her future home and farm with a downtown/ classy feel type reception. This dress will be perfect and versatile for the farm and the downtown reception! Lindsay gets the most efficient bride award. She's only been planning since March and has it ALL together! You go girl!

And up next is Ashley's outdoor September wedding in Nashville, TN which with have a great Southern elegance, all natural type feel with moss and hydrangeas included. This dress will be perfect in the eggplant color highlighted with some blues and greens.

And Brittaney's wedding is happening in October - details to be decided post Miss Tennessee in July :) She's using a moss and black scheme which will be perfect for her fall wedding in East Tennessee.

Then, Erin's big day in November. She's getting married at a lovely Catholic church and having an undoubtedly beautiful reception near downtown Knoxville. Imagine the dress in Sangria - gorgeous! The sangria will be highlighted with some bright fall colors like green and orange and will be a perfect match with Erin's style!

I'm well on my way to 27 dresses and couldn't be happier. Congratulations to all this years' brides-to-be.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

It's almost time for GOLF!?!

It's getting warmer, the sun is finally showing and the days are getting shorter until people will be out enjoying the golf courses again! Now why am I so excited about golf? I don't even play! I am excited because this year I've been given the opportunity to work with my high school Alma mater to raise money for the school's athletic program through the 1st annual West Greene Golf Classic.  We're hosting an event in conjunction with Link Hills Golf Course in Greeneville, TN to raise money to help the students involved in sports at the school. Money raised will fund new facilities for the teams, equipment needs and scholarships for outstanding seniors. I know I loved being involved in sports during high school. It really gave me a way to put the theory of what I learned about leadership into practice. Plus, it helped me make some of my best friends, find mentors, build relationships, learn to cope with adversity, kept me busy, off the couch, and I had fun!
If you or someone you know might be interested in putting a team together, check out all of the information below. We can only take about 20 teams and spots will fill up quickly. Of course, if you are interested in sponsorship, those option are listed as well. I can't wait to raise some money for a great cause and contribute to the success of students athletes at West Greene High School!

On June 3, 2011, the West Greene Booster Club and student athletes and Link Hills Country Club are partnering to host the 1st Annual West Greene Golf Classic to support West Greene High School athletics.  In this inaugural event we hope to raise funds to support the student athletes that compete not only on the fields and courts but in the classroom as well.
This year’s event promises to be successful and exciting. We have an afternoon flight with four-person scramble teams teeing off at the 18-hole championship golf course designed by Robert Trent Jones. This event will feature wonderful gifts for each participant, amazing prizes for the special event winners, and grand prizes for the top team, a delicious lunch and a great opportunity to support local student athletes.
Because of the support of sponsors like you and the hard work of the volunteer staff this event is destined to be a success. I challenge you to help this year’s inaugural events set the bar high for coming year fundraising teams and their efforts. Student athletes in our community look to us to set the example of sportsmanship, hard work and service. Please join us in helping these students achieve success through this joint effort.
Sponsorships and teams will fill up quickly. Please make your reservations soon.
Jessica Jarrell Poore
Golf Classic Committee Chair


Sponsorship Guide
$1,500 – Event Sponsor
Sponsor receives large banner at event
            Inside cover or back inside cover, full page promotion in sponsors’ book
            Banner outside during 2011 football season, inside during 2011 basketball season
            Announcement of sponsorship and promotion during 2011 season sporting events
            Name and logo on all promotional posters, materials and printings
            Name and logo on sleeve of event t-shirts
            Name and logo on school’s event website that links to sponsor’s website
            One golf team of four

$1000 – Lunch Sponsor
            Sponsor receives large banner on lunch table and additional lunch signage
            Full page promotion in sponsors’ book
            Banner outside during 2011 football season, inside during 2011 basketball season
            Announcement of sponsorship and promotion during 2011 season sporting events
            Name and logo on school’s event website that links to the sponsor’s website

$500 – Bag & Cart Sponsor
Sponsor receives ad on all carts and gift bags at event
Opportunity to place any additional company/organizational info in bags
            Full page promotion in sponsors’ book
            Signage outside during 2011 football season and inside during 2011 basketball season
            Announcement of sponsorship and promotion during the 2011 season sporting events
            Name and logo on school’s event website that links to the sponsor’s website

$100 – Hole Sponsor
Sponsor receives sign at hole of sponsorship
            Half page promotion in sponsors’ book
            Signage outside during 2011 football season
            Announcement of sponsorship and promotion during the 2011 season sporting events
            Name and logo on school’s event website that links to the sponsor’s website

$400 – Team Participation
            Golf team of four
            Door prizes
1st Annual West Greene Golf Classic
Sponsorship Guide
June 3, 2011

Agreement Form

Name: __________________________________________________________________

Company: _______________________________________________________________

Address: ________________________________________________________________

Email: __________________________________________________________________

City/State/Zip: ____________________________________________________________

Signature: ________________________________________________________________

            I commit to support the Classic as an Event Sponsor $1500.
            I commit to support the Classic as a Lunch Sponsor $1000.
            I commit to support the Classic as a Bag & Cart Sponsor $500.
            I commit to support the Classic as a Hole Sponsor $100.
Team Participation:
            I would like to commit ____ 4-person team(s)
                        at $400 = _______ total.

Please mail or fax agreement or any questions to:
Larry Bible/ West Greene High School – (423) 422-4430
275 West Greene Drive Mosheim, TN 37818

Monday, February 28, 2011

National FFA Week

Last week FFA members across the nation celebrated National FFA Week. At the University of Tennessee we had the honor of hosting 4 of the 8 State FFA Officers on their Goodwill Tour across the state. Check out of latest Ag in Under 10 to see how we celebrated in our department and get some interesting FFA facts to share with others.

Now that FFA week is over - make sure you continue to tell the story of agriculture and agriculture education every chance you get!

Weekly Ag Update - Farm Bureau Executive Newswatch

U.S. Farm Exports Hit Record-High in 2010
U.S. farm exports reached an all-time high of $115.8 billion in calendar year 2010, surpassing the previous high of $114.8 billion set in 2008. Both the value and volume of U.S. agricultural exports worldwide has increased.
“Today’s numbers indicate that the demand for U.S. food and agricultural products is soaring worldwide,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “This is good news for all Americans in these trying economic times. Every $1 billion in agricultural exports supports 8,000 American jobs, which means agricultural exports supported nearly 1 million jobs in 2010.”
Export sales surged both in bulk commodities, which increased 19 percent to $47.2 billion, and for consumer-oriented agricultural products, which increased 15 percent to $45.4 billion.

For the first time in history, China is the top market for U.S. agricultural exports. China imported agricultural products valued at $17.5 billion from the U.S. in 2010. This accounts for 15.1 percent of total U.S. agricultural exports. Soybeans are the primary farm product China imports from the U.S. China relies on other nations for soybeans, cotton, vegetable oil and edible sugar but does not depend on international markets for major grains including rice, wheat and corn. Canada is now the No. 2 market for U.S. farm exports, valued at $16.9 billion in 2010.
The latest export data is available via the Global Agricultural Trade System.

Perhaps after reading this article we'll all thank a farmer today - not just for the food or clothing we use but for supplying jobs in America and continuing to help our economic situation overall while theirs seems to worsen.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Sharing Agriculture Knowledge

I know a lot of times people are unsure where to find agriculture knowledge. Sometimes I am even unsure of the best way to share the message. I am going to post information like this to my blog weekly for anyone interested in keeping up with current agricultural issues - especially for my state FFA officer candidate friends who need to be really up-to-date heading into State FFA Convention in March!
For: March 2011
By Bob Stallman, President
 American Farm Bureau Federation
The Ethanol Question
Ethanol is under fire once again.  The “food v. fuel” debate is heating up with an intensity not seen for several years.  But, unfortunately, the critics don’t have it right.
Instead of pointing fingers at ethanol for increased corn prices, we need to look at what’s really driving demand—energy prices, weather-related issues and a growing global middle class. The days of $2 bushel corn are over. It’s a whole new ballgame and we, as a planet, need to accept this new reality.
In Retrospect
Corn supplies are currently tight and in high demand.  It’s understandable why naysayers would point to ethanol as the culprit. It’s an easy target.  But, if we look back at 1996, the last time U.S. corn supplies were as low as is expected at the end of this year, the ethanol industry didn’t even have both feet on the ground.
At the end of 1996, corn stocks dipped to 426 million bushels, or a stocks-to-use ratio of 5 percent.  This year we again expect to see the stocks-to-use ratio dip to 5 percent.  Due to higher use of corn, however, that same 5 percent rate translates to ending stocks of 675 million bushels. 
The comparison of 1996 and our circumstances today tell an interesting story.  Then, our total use of corn for ethanol was only 396 million bushels.  This year we expect to use 4.95 billion bushels for ethanol, a near 4.5 billion bushel increase. 
But, in 1996, we planted 71.5 million acres of corn as opposed to the 88.2 million acres we planted this year.  Further, because of the increase in acreage and improved yields, U.S. production is actually 5 billion bushels higher than it was 15 years ago.  Feed use for corn, along with other food and industrial uses not associated with ethanol, have also increased by 425 million bushels from the 1996 levels.  
 In short, we have expanded production in order to provide for not only more feed and industrial use of corn, but for nearly 10 percent of our nation’s automobile fuel supplies, as well.
Coming to Terms
Many critics would tell you that current increased production would have occurred without ethanol demand, but without economic signals driven by ethanol why would we expect farmers to boost planting?
One of the key elements we must all begin to come to terms with are the full implications of higher energy costs, particularly gasoline priced at $3 per gallon as opposed to the 75 cents per gallon that was the average in 1996.  At $40 per barrel for oil, the energy value  of corn is  roughly $2.50 per bushel; at $100 per barrel that same bushel of corn is worth more than $6.50.  And this is strictly the energy value of the corn as fuel in our fireplaces, not as a value added product that has been converted into valuable livestock feed and a fuel able to be mixed with gasoline and fully functional in our automobiles.
This general rise in the price of grains has not been limited to corn.  Soybean prices, too, have moved to new levels, certainly due in part to spillover effects from corn, but also due to exploding demand from China and other rapidly developing economies.  In 1996 China imported 320,000 tons of soybeans.  This year it is expected to import 57 million tons from world markets. As the global middle class increases, so does protein consumption. 
Weather-related issues around the world also are having an impact on corn supply and demand.
In short, it’s never as black-and-white as the critics would have us believe. Many factors are playing a role in increased corn prices and the “food v. fuel” cliché is growing tiresome. Ethanol is a good, clean, home-grown fuel that lessens U.S. reliance on foreign fuel while adding jobs to the American economy.