Tag: ranching

Levi’s Lost Calf Children’s Book Giveaway Winner

Levi's Lost Calf book giveaway winner

Thanks to everyone who commented on our Levi’s Lost Calf book giveaway! The winner is Mandy Blank! Email us at info@idahocattlewomen.org to redeem your book!

 

Categories: Blogging, Giveaway, Lifestyle, Ranch kids, Ranch Life

Agriculture Links

Have you checked out our links page? We’ve included some great resources for finding out more about how cattle are raised, the health benefits and nutritional aspects of beef, new recipes for preparing beef and some fun facts about the agriculture industry.

We know consumers have a lot of questions these days about where their food comes from. We cattlewomen are still learning and also have questions about agriculture. Bottomline is as agriculturists, we have a strong tie to the land and animals in our care. Providing safe and nutritious food is our number one priority. We’re feeding our families too! Please know if you have any questions about your food or how it’s produced, you can reach out and ask. We’d love to hear from you!

Links

Check out these other websites for more information on cattle and beef.

Explorebeef Explore Beef ~ www.explorebeef.org

Beef For Dinner Logo Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner. ~ www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com

Facts About Beef logo Facts About BEEF ~ www.factsaboutbeef.com

animalsmart.org

 

Animal Smart ~ www.animalsmart.org

 

Black ICA Logo2 Idaho Cattle Association ~ www.idahocattle.org

Idaho Beef Council Logo JPG Idaho Beef Council ~ www.idbeef.org

Beef Counts Logo-final--1-12-10 Beef Counts ~ www.beefcounts.org

 

Some Blogs We Like

Beef Matters

The Idaho Rancher’s Wife

Feedyard Foodie

Mom at the Meat Counter

Categories: Beef, Blogging, Cattle

30 Days of Women in Ag: Recap

Wow! It’s December 2015! How have we reached the end of the year already?! We just completed our first Women in Ag Blog Series and want to say thanks to all who read, commented, shared and participated. We are grateful for the support! For every woman featured, there are a couple hundred more that are also contributing in unique and different ways to help bring food and fiber to the rest of us. We look forward to sharing more stories of Women in Ag in the months to come. For now, we hope you will continue following us as we share the story of agriculture from Idaho Cattlewomen. Following is a collection of links to recap our month.

Day 1: Women in Ag: Idaho CattleWomen Chair, Robin Lufkin

Day 2: Women in Ag: Idaho Agriculture Director, Celia Gould

Day 3: Women in Ag: UI Research Technician, Megan Satterwhite

Day 4: Women in Ag: Weiser Cattlewoman, Julie Kerner

Day 5: Women in Ag: Camas Prairie Cowgirl, Diana Graning

Day 6: Women in Ag: Agriculture Devotee, Christie Prescott

Day 7: Women in Ag: ICA Board Member, Dawn Anderson

Day 8: Women in Ag: Simplot Land Manager, Darcy Helmick

Day 9: Women in Ag: Rangeland Resource Commission Director, Gretchen Hyde

Day 10: Women in Ag: Idaho Purebred Breeder, Maureen Mai

Day 11: Women in Ag: Trade Specialist, Leah Clark 

Day 12: Women in Ag: Social Media Savvy Cowgirl, Chyenne Smith

Day 13: Women in Ag: Natural Resources Policy Advisor, Karen Williams

Day 14: Women in Ag: Range Management Specialist, Brooke Jacobson

Day 15: Women in Ag: Cowboy Girl, Jayme Thompson

Day 16: Women in Ag: All-Around Ranch Wife, Trish Dowton

Day 17: Women in Ag: Small Town Superwoman, Jodie Mink

Day 18: Women in Ag: Livestock Marketing Communicator, Kim Holt

Day 19: Women in Ag: All-Around Cattleman, Jessie Jarvis

Day 20: Women in Ag: Idaho Cattle Association President, Laurie Lickley

Day 21: Women in Ag: County Extension Agent, Sarah Baker

Day 22: Women in Ag: Corporate Marketing Specialist, Alethea Prewett

Day 23: Women in Ag: ICA Membership and Productions Manager, Dawn Schooley

Day 24: Women in Ag: Top Hand, Kara Kraich Smith

Day 25: Women in Ag: Animal Health Territory Manager, Carmen Stevens

Day 26: Women in Ag: Fourth Generation Rancher, Sarah Helmick

Day 27: Women in Ag: Ag Communications Professional, Maggie Malson

Day 28: Women in Ag: Rural-Loving Ranch Wife, Tay Brackett

Day 29: Women in Ag: Cattle Industry Champion, Ramona Karas

Day 30: Women in Ag: Rancher and Everyday Agvocate, Linda Rider

Please feel free to continue sharing these stories, and if you have any comments or questions about future Women in Ag posts, please contact us at info@idahocattlewomen.org.

 

 

Categories: Beef, Blogging, Cattle, Idaho Cattlewomen

Women in Ag: Ag Communications Professional, Maggie Malson

Maggie Malson grew up a Kansas farmer’s daughter, but after meeting her husband, Josh, at Kansas State University, the couple returned to his home in Idaho and she easily found herself loving the Gem State. The couple raises Angus and Hereford cattle and their four children on his family’s southwest Idaho ranch. Maggie has been an ag communications professional for the past 14 years. When not writing stories or photographing clients, watching kid activities, or helping with the cattle, Maggie enjoys getting creative in the kitchen. She also volunteers her time as a 4-H club leader, a contributor to the Idaho CattleWomen blog and is involved with Beef Counts.

How are you involved in agriculture and/or beef industry today? My husband and I live and work on his family’s registered cattle ranch. While I don’t work outside with cattle every day, I am always on call to help as needed—whether moving cows, making a run to the vet clinic, or in the case this fall when I awoke to cows in our yard, helping get them back in and fixing the fence. With my communications experience, I manage our website, and help with the marketing and advertising of our purebred cattle. Our children are active in junior beef association activities and 4-H, showing cattle and sheep. We also have a couple feeder pigs each year. Professionally, I spent 13 years publishing the magazine for the Idaho Cattle Association, but recently stepped away from it to be more available to my family. After graduating from college, I started my communications business to provide writing, photography and design services, mainly to agriculture publications and clients, which I continue to do today.

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Checking out the bulls during the family’s annual bull sale. Maggie and Josh are thankful to raise their children in the cattle business.

How has your life been shaped by agriculture and/or the beef industry? My love of agriculture is a part of who I am. I was raised in a small farming community in Kansas where my dad and granddad were farmers. I remember helping my dad change water, which for us was big gated pipe. Moving cows was also a favorite family activity. I was a 10-year 4-H member, and that program, along with my parents, helped teach me responsibility, hard work, dedication, goal-setting and leadership skills. I had many interests in high school including art, photography and writing, but my love for agriculture, horses and cattle led me to pursue a degree in animal science. During my sophomore year I attended my first Ag Media Summit, where I met writers and editors of publications I had grown up seeing my dad read. I realized telling the story of agriculture was my life’s passion. I added ag communications as a second major. I was fortunate to have college internships to gain experience in both the horse and beef industries, and being on the KSU horse judging team also gave me opportunities for travel and meeting people through agriculture—many of them are still close friends today.

Who inspires you or serves as a mentor? Certainly both of my parents and my grandparents have been great mentors for me. I look up to them for their faith, hard work, and kindness to others. They offered so much love and support to me through the years. My 4-H leader and county agent, Frank Swan, was also an influential force in my formative years and gave me many opportunities for growth and learning. In my communications career, I have numerous colleagues I admire and look up to. In the last 13 years, the cattlewomen and men of Idaho have provided daily inspiration for their dedication to raising beef and feeding people. There have been a few in particular who have been especially encouraging to me and are great leaders in our industry. I always appreciate opportunities to “pick their brains,” and gain insight from their experiences when we spend time together.

How do you provide encouragement to others? In my role as a wife and mom, I find lots of opportunities to encourage my family. Josh and I enjoy working together, albeit not always easy, but working alongside your spouse doing something you both love is a great way to spend the days. And I admire him so much for his love of cattle and doing the best job he can. I also love to laugh, so if I can infuse a little humor into a situation I will try because laughter really is great medicine. With our kids, I want to find the right balance of letting them learn from life experiences, but loving and guiding them along the way. I am a firm believer that everyone has something to contribute in life. I want to empower and encourage women to realize their worth and to be proud of the role they play—whether it’s at home or working outside the home. There is enough negativity in the world that we need to build each other up and not shame each other for parenting, food or other choices. In this day and age of modern technology and instant messages, I still find power in a face to face conversation and the handwritten note, so I try to visit in person or send cards and letters to others when I can.

If given the chance, what message about agriculture or the beef industry would you share with a large group of people? We tend to fear what we don’t know, so I would encourage the general public to get to know farmers and ranchers, learn more about what we do to care for land and animals, and to trust we are doing our very best. Agriculture impacts all of us, and a thriving agriculture industry and rural economies are the backbone of our country. Agriculture should still be considered a noble profession. It’s simple; we have to eat, have clothing and shelter. I want the rest of the population to know that farmers and ranchers care more about the land and animals than anyone in Washington, D.C., who is making policy without first-hand knowledge of how small or large farms and ranches are run. Food choice is important, and all production systems are needed. Science and technology are valuable tools that producers use to help be more efficient and sustainable.

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Maggie has fond memories of showing horses and cattle at her county fair. Now she gets to watch her own kids show animals and learn valuable life lessons through 4-H.

What are you most thankful for? My faith, freedom, family, friends and health! I am thankful for agriculture and the people who have positively influenced my life. Life isn’t always easy and we all have our own share of trials and challenges, but my grandma’s advice was that you could always find someone else worse off than you. She had a positive, grateful attitude and didn’t complain. Even in the midst of an uncomfortable circumstance or challenge, I can always find something to be thankful for! If I ever start to think of what I don’t have, it’s my internal cue to look around and see how I can help or bless someone else. Reaching out to others in their time of need always puts my blessings in perspective.

What is you favorite meal to cook yourself or for others? I really love a good steak and roasted broccoli. I could probably eat that every day! One of my family’s favorites I make is a Steak Alfredo Pasta. I cut the steak into bite-size pieces, season, then brown them. I make a homemade sauce, starting with a roux of butter and flour, adding milk and cooking until it thickens. I season with garlic salt, pepper, Italian spices and Parmesan cheese. I add diced fresh tomatoes, red onion and bell peppers if I have them around. (I change it up a little each time.) I mix the steak back in after the sauce is finished and serve over fetticine noodles.

What are your guilty pleasures in life? I don’t have much time to watch TV, but I have three shows I DVR—Madam Secretary, Castle and The Mysteries of Laura. I love the strong, female lead characters, and each show has some drama, along with laughter too—a great combination.

What are some of your favorite pastimes and/or hobbies? I love to read and usually have several books on my nightstand. I enjoy art, DIY projects and scrapbooking, although I haven’t had as much time to do this as I used to. I really enjoy watching my kids show their animals or participate in sports.

Favorite place to visit? Kansas (or anywhere my family is) and McCall, Idaho, where we have a family cabin. Because Josh and I both work from home, getting away from the ranch doesn’t happen often, but being up in the mountains and on the lake gives us both time to relax, enjoy downtime with our kids, and take in the beautiful scenery.

little girl showing horse

Maggie and her first horse, Dandy, who taught her about perseverance and hard work.

What are three little known facts about you? 1) I won my first horse in an essay contest when I was 8 years old. She was only a yearling and I had no experience; I was just a horse-crazy girl. I learned so much about perseverance and not giving up from that horse. We had to learn everything by trial and error, but by the time I was finished showing her, I had reached all my goals. 2) I took an Introvert/Extrovert test once and my answers were evenly divided down the middle. I enjoy being around people, but also crave alone time. 3) I play the piano. I grew up taking lessons and playing in church. I don’t play nearly as often I would like to, but sometimes when I’m stressed, I’ll sit down and play through a hymn or Christmas song.

Keep up with Maggie on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Categories: Beef, Blogging, Cattle, Idaho Cattlewomen, Ranch Life

Women in Ag: Fourth Generation Rancher, Sarah Helmick

Sarah Butler Helmick, was born and raised in Bliss on her family’s 4th generation purebred Angus ranch. Growing up, she was active in 4-H and FFA as well as the Idaho Junior Angus Association and the National Junior Angus Association. Sarah attended Casper College on a livestock judging scholarship and eventually became a 3rd generation University of Idaho Vandal, where she received a degree in Agriculture Science, Leadership and Communication. She is currently teaching Agriculture at Bliss High School. She and her husband, Chad, live and work on his family’s cow-calf and farming operation in Bliss where they develop the heifer calves through breeding and farm.

How are you involved in agriculture today? I am currently teaching Ag to students in Bliss, grades 7th-12th, and I also serve as the FFA advisor. My job has taught me just how removed our consumers are from the agriculture industry, even in a rural town! I try every day to help educate our youth about the agriculture industry and shed light onto any question they may have. I’m also co-advisor of the Idaho Junior Angus Association. My husband works alongside his parents on their cow-calf operation that spans from Mayfield to Bliss, and manages all of the farming. When I am not teaching or coaching an FFA team, I enjoy helping the family with whatever tasks that need done, whether it is putting up fence in the spring, feeding heifers, or my favorite, helping wean and bring cow’s home from the mountain. I have even been known to change a pesky wheel line (not my favorite job!) Also, as often as I can (and not near often enough) I help my parents at Spring Cove Ranch. My parents still manage a few cows of mine and I like to help them whenever I can. I enjoy helping my dad and brother sort through the bulls in preparation for our annual bull sale and helping mom with the bookwork.

How has your life been shaped by agriculture? Like most of the women featured, I was born into an agriculture family. I am the 4th generation to be involved in Spring Cove Ranch and I am very proud of that! Both sides of my family were very active in the agriculture industry, raising cattle and involved in organizations such as 4-H, Soil Conservation, Idaho Cattle Association and so on. This led to my passion for the 4-H and FFA programs. I am currently a leader in the 4-H program and enjoy helping young members get started in our industry. Growing up, I knew I would always want be involved in agriculture. My parents gave me my first registered heifer in 1993, Spring Cove Violet. From that one cow, my herd grew and so did my love for the beef industry. Being involved in the cattle business also taught me a lot about life. I learned skills that I know most kids these days are missing. I learned about life and death, success and failure. I learned about hard work and responsibility. This sort of “reality check” came early in life and shaped me into the person I am today.

Who inspires you or serves as a mentor? There are many people that inspire me on a daily basis. I have learned so much from my parents and am so grateful for them. They have pushed me to be the best version of myself, and because of them, I was able to grow up the best way possible—outside, and around Angus cattle! At a young age they instilled in me the importance of a good education and hard work; two aspects of life I haven’t forgotten. Their resilience and knowledge impresses me every day. As most people who know my family would tell you, I come from a long line of strong, independent women. Another inspiration to me was my great grandmother, Dorothy Agee. She married at 17 and moved to a ranch in the Middle of Nowhere, Nevada, where she raised cows and kids. She taught me lessons that I didn’t truly understand until I got married last year. Her advice on raising…errr…I mean… loving a husband is something I will forever cherish.

Chad and Sarah will be celebrating their first year of marriage this coming Sunday!

Chad and Sarah will be celebrating their first year of marriage this coming Sunday!

How do you provide encouragement to others? I always try to look on the bright side of things. I try to encourage my students to push themselves beyond their limits. A lot of the time, they don’t think they can do something, because no one around them ever has. For that reason, I try to encourage students to envision themselves being successful, and am the first to let them know that I believe in them. If we all tried our hardest, we would all be amazed at what we could achieve!

If given the chance, what message about agriculture or the beef industry would you share with a large group of people? I would LOVE the chance to show people what happens on the day-to-day happenings of a ranch. I truly think anyone who spends a day on the ranch with my father would immediately understand that we care for our cattle and the land. My dad’s passion for his cows and the land is contagious. I think that would help open their eyes to the fact that this industry is full of families, just like mine, who are committed to caring for the land. Idaho ranchers are true conservationists! We want the best for our livestock, and our land, and would never do anything to jeopardize the safety or health of either.

What are you most thankful for? I am thankful for my hardworking, loving husband who shares the same passion for the cattle industry as I do. I am thankful for my amazing family and friends. I am thankful for a school full of students who always keep me on my toes! And I am thankful for Idaho ranchers who care for our beautiful state while producing a delicious and nutritious product for the world!

What is your favorite meal to cook yourself or for others? Man, this has been a challenge for me! Growing up I would rather be outside helping dad than be inside cooking with mom. So needless to say, my husband has been a wonderfully patient guinea pig!  Thankfully with my genetics, there is no way I can be a bad cook—luckily I’m getting better by the day! I have found some great go-to recipes and my favorite would have to be The Pioneer Woman’s Sour Cream Noodle Bake. It’s delicious and easy to feed a crowd!

Sarah is very close with her parents, Stacey and Art, and tries to help them on the ranch as much as possible.

Sarah is very close with her parents, Stacey and Art, and tries to help them on the ranch as much as possible.

What is your favorite childhood memory? My favorite childhood memory is helping my dad AI cows on one of our Bureau of Land Management (BLM) allotments. We would set up a mobile breeding box every spring on a BLM allotment adjacent to the ranch. I would help him ride the range looking for cows that were showing signs of heat, then trail them back to the chute to be bred. I loved spending the time with my dad and learning about everything from the reproduction cycle of a cow to the history of the land. And it was a real treat when dad would find a horny toad to bring home and put in the aquarium (they never lasted long for some reason….)

What are some of your favorite pastimes and/or hobbies? Spending time with family is my favorite pastime. I have the cutest three nephews. My oldest nephew starts 4-H this year and our whole family is pretty excited to watch the next generation begin their career. I enjoy watching the junior shows around the state and our county fair and cannot wait to watch Wyatt this summer!

I also love exploring new places with my husband. Whether we are 20 miles from home on a Sunday drive or Mesa Verde National Park on our honeymoon, I love seeing new places and he is my favorite adventure buddy!

What is your favorite place to visit? I have always loved to travel. Growing up most of our family “vacations” were to deliver bulls, pick up a new herd sire, or dragging my steers and heifers to a junior show. And I wouldn’t trade it for the world! I enjoy exploring new country where ever that might be. However, after growing up and moving away from home and moving back again, I have found my favorite place to visit now is HOME. Spring Cove Ranch is the most beautiful place on earth and will always be my favorite spot to visit.

Be sure to keep up with Sarah’s daily life, by following her on Facebook and Instagram!

Categories: Beef, Blogging, Idaho Cattlewomen, Ranch Life