Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Liv, Bros and Co Lemonade Stand

It's Wordless Wednesday and today I want to share with all of you a fabulous little girl, her special story and her quest to give back. Her name is Alivia Antinetti and she is the daughter of fellow California Women for Agriculture member Rachelle and David Antinetti. Is this not the cutest picture you have ever seen!! I want you to check out the Lemonade Stand website and listen to Liv's story.

That's Liv on the left with her bros. You wouldn't know it from the picture above but Liv is a cancer survivor. She fought and won!! This weekend, Liv, Bros and Co. is hosting a Lemonade Stand to raise money for the Make A Wish Foundation to return the favor for the wish she and her family received. Her goal is to raise $5,000 and I would bet she more than makes that goal. Everything over her goal will go to the Children's Oncology Group for further study of the Wilms Tumor.

You can visit the Liv, Bros and Co. Lemonade Stand this Sunday, May 29th, 2011  in Oakdale, California  from 10 am to 2 pm at River Avenue Park. Please do if you are in the area.  Jake, Clayton and I will not be able to visit but we will be mailing in our donation.

Nothing is more important in this world than our children. Liv is a living example of what strength, resilience and spirit should look like in all of us. Best wishes to Liv and her Bros on a super successful lemonade stand.
Thanks for reading. ~mrs. c

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - This one is for Daddy!

Thank goodness it's Wordless Wednesday because I really have no words for this picture. I am posting at Jake's request. These are the cutest kids I know but the picture is.... well.... let's just say if you know their fathers then I don't need to explain anymore.

If you were hoping for some glorious ag focused picture or mouth watering food shot, sorry. This week its all about family. Thanks for reading. ~ mrs.c

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Weddings & Cake!

Last weekend, Jake had the privilege to be a groomsman for his best friend Gregg Hibbits as he wed Stephanie Mathis in a beautiful outdoor ceremony at the historic Santa Margarita Ranch in Santa Margarita, California. I took LOTS of pictures but I am only going to share one today. I will let the happy couple report on their SPECTACULAR affair. However I do want to share the cake. Everyone knows a great wedding has to have a great cake and this one did not disappoint!

The cake, a combination of spicy carrot on one layer and rich devils food on another, told a story. The bottom layer represents their upbringings, cattle and walnuts. Stephanie hails from a Merced County cattle ranching family and Gregg grew up amongst the orchards and row crops in Santa Barbara County. The middle layer, a horse and grape vines represents their adult life. Stephanie a highly respected equine surgeon and Gregg the general manager of a large vineyard management company. The top brings them together and is the wedding crest or logo, an elegant "G" and "S" that together create and "H"! Jake and I are so excited for the new Mr. and Mrs. Hibbits and wish them decades of love, laughter and happiness!

So much for a Wordless Wednesday. ~ mrs. c

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Thank Goodness for the County Fair

There are very few memories I have about my spring and summers growing up that don’t include “going to the fair.” Those memories include my family since this is often what we called “summer vacation.” When you grow up the daughter of a dairyman, getting away from the dairy for an extended amount of time is a challenge. But when it came to show day and sale day at the May Day Fair in Los Banos and the Merced County Fair in July, I knew Dad and Mom would be ringside holding a brush or a halter.

I am certain the same story still resonates today for the many local kids and their families who will participate in the Silver Dollar Fair in Chico, May 26-30 and the Butte County Fair in Gridley, August 25-29. While I might not have known it then, the experience has made me who I am today. It’s the exact reason that 4-H and FFA programs and their continued growth and success in our community are so important to me now. It’s about the lessons in responsibility, humility, and respect that I took away from the show ring. Knowing how to balance a check book and fill in a check before I left for college were lessons that many kids don’t have. Developing a work ethic I carry today because the animals needed to be fed before I went to school and then again before I ate my dinner. And never leaving the show ring, regardless of where I finished in the lineup, without shaking the judge’s hand.

It is these youth programs that will produce our future local business owners, teachers, elected officials and consumers of our agricultural goods. I would even bet that a good percentage of you reading this article can say you are also a product of 4-H or FFA programs and know exactly what I am talking about.

The Saturday of the fair has always been reserved for the Junior Livestock Auction where 4-H and FFA exhibitors display their market ready livestock projects for the last time. These youngsters have bought either a pig, lamb, steer, goat, chicken or rabbit, and fed, exercised, washed, pampered, and paraded each in front of a judge all while paying for the feed, supplies and entry fees to get to the goal – sale day. And just like your business, there was risk, but it’s all part of the process.

The young exhibitors of the Silver Dollar Fair and the Butte County Fair need your help. You might be thinking there is no way you can buy an entire steer or maybe your freezer has no room for a whole pig but you still want to help. The good news is you have options. First, if you want to be a buyer at the upcoming Silver Dollar Fair in Chico, you will need to register. Call the fair office at (530) 895-4666 to get the registration form. If an entire animal is not for you, consider combining resources with your neighbors or friends to split the purchase.

Another alternative is to make a contribution to the buyers’ groups who help support youth exhibitors. The “Cartel” collects donations from individuals and businesses and supports the Silver Dollar Fair auction by buying animals, and giving you or your business recognition without you having to be there on sale day. For information on how to contribute to The Cartel, contact Rick Cinquini at (530) 570-4771.

The Feather River Buyers Group does the same thing for exhibitors at the Butte County Fair in August. To contribute to the Feather Rivers Buyers Group, call Mary McMurphy at (530) 534-7783.

Butte County Famr Bureau Executive Director Colleen Cecil during her early 4-H career.

I hope to see many of you on Saturday, May 29 at the Silver Dollar Fair for the Junior Livestock Auction. And don’t worry; I know August is still a few months away, so look for a reminder to attend the Butte County Fair Junior Livestock Auction in a future issue. It’s been many years since I last entered a show ring but I look forward to seeing my son in the show ring in a few years learning the same values I did.

Reprinted with permission from the Butte County Farm Bureau News, May/June 2011

Monday, May 2, 2011

Sowing Seeds as a Family

It's springtime in Northern California! And not a moment to soon. Other than my itchy eyes and constant sneezing, it's a wonderful time of year. With this fabulous weather does come some drawbacks for my family - a longer work week and more hours away from home for Jake and the rest of California's farmers who are busily prepping and planting fields that will soon produce food to feed the world.

Jake may spend his entire day working in the dirt, but he also relaxes by doing the same in our dirt, also known as our backyard.
Check out the onions. They have been in the ground since November.

You are not seeing things. Yes this is an artichoke and yes it was grown in Chico and not Castroville.

Clayton was trying to help dad plant some corn but lost his balance. That's okay, now he's covered in dirt. I am quickly learning that dirt is now an official part of Clayton's wardrobe.

Here is a picture for you Stacy Gore.

This is the herb garden. Well actually the herbs are at the top, the bottom is planted in more onions and some young rhubarb.

As you can see the weather on Sunday was beautiful! So perfect I decided we would not only cook dinner outside, we would eat it outside too!

Perfectly seasoned tri-tip, juicy chicken and sweet asparagus.

Throw in a few California strawberries and my little man loved his dinner.

Just how I like my tri-tip - pink in the middle!

Did I mention we had corn on the cob? California grown too! Also cooked outside on the grill's burner. It's still pretty early for corn but the flavor was tasty.

Throw in some warm bread and dig in!

When dinner was put away and there were no more seeds to sow, all that was left of our perfect day spent together was to relax and enjoy these moments that I am so very thankful for and blessed to call my life.

Thanks for reading. ~ mrs. c


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