• P.J. Griekspoor

    Cherry Blossom Peak Tops Off D.C. Visit

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on April 15, 2014

    I am happy to report that the cherry blossoms hit peak bloom last Friday – one of the rare occasions when the most beautiful days of the bloom actually match up with the annual Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C. I was in D.C. for a whole week now with all eight grandkids and their parents. And no, we still haven’t seen everything this amazing city has to offer tourists, though we did add one amazing tour – D.C. Ducks. This tour proved to be a fantastic experience and…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Source, Friend, Mentor Lost to Cancer

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on March 17, 2014

    Almost everyone knows someone who helped them along the way without expecting anything in return – who just enjoyed teaching someone about what they do. For me, there have been many of those people. But one of the ones that I revered most, Capp Proffit, manager of  Barton County Feeders at Great Bend, died on Monday. Capp had been fighting cancer for months and had been away from work off and on for treatments. I prefer not to think about the months since last fall when he became…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    It's A Batten Down the Lawn Furniture Kind of Day

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on February 20, 2014

    You know you live in Kansas when the National Weather Service issues a hazardous weather warning for high winds and suggests you batten down the lawn furniture and garbage cans. Much of southern Kansas is experiencing constant winds of 35 to 45 miles per hour and gusts to 60 as I write this. There are six schools in Wichita without power. Most importantly for me, the picnic table on the deck (complete with umbrella) is on it’s side – again. You might wonder why I simply…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Christmas Comes and Goes, But Memories Are Forever

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 28, 2013

    Has anybody else noticed that time goes faster and faster the older you get? My 6-year-old grandson just said, “Grandma, you know what? It is 363 days until next Christmas. If I got a calendar big enough to hold all the days, how tall would it be?” When I was his age, it seemed that Christmases were far, far apart. Now, I think that maybe 363 days is enough time to actually get everything done if I start right now. I have to admit that Christmas is my absolutely favorite time of…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Teaching Kids About Ag, Livestock Is Reward of Its Own

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 12, 2013

    One of the great things about being editor of Kansas Farmer is the opportunity to take my “city kid” grandchildren along  when a trip promises to offer some excellent education about Kansas agriculture. This week, I took Jaime, almost 9, and Michele, just-turned 8, on a trip to see a feedyard, meet some top-notch FFA leaders, visit a dairy and make a stop to check on cotton harvest – two days of education about some pretty diverse aspects of Kansas agriculture. Going…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    This Grandma Has No Shortage of Things to Be Thankful For

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 2, 2013

    There is a time when the right thing to do is just slow down and enjoy the moments. I say moments, plural, because my Thanksgiving weekend was blessed with so very many of them. I am still tucking the memories away so I can pull them out and relive them when life gets stressful and problems seem to pile up. Holidays are always BIG around our house because our family is big. Sunday dinner with just the kids and grandkids is dinner for 16. Throw in the other grandparents, a few friends with no…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Opportunities to Learn Come From Odd Places

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on November 6, 2013

    Sometimes there are opportunities to learn about life that just appear out of nowhere. On Wednesday, I took a few grandkids with me to take pictures for the December magazine at a Christmas tree farm. What can go wrong, right? Kids, Christmas trees, lots of space, long distance from roads? So, I’m checking out the trees, talking to the owner about the lingering effects of two years of drought and how a tree farmer goes about helping his trees recover when we hear “Oh, No! Oh…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Kids, Fireworks, Fourth of July: Yes, Life is Good

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on July 5, 2013

    When it comes to fun anywhere, it’s hard to beat kids and the Fourth of July. This year, I was struck by how many times I screamed “Neva, be careful!” or “Jax, watch out!” only to hear my children’s voices in the background saying “Mom, settle down, they are OK.” Do we get more risk-adverse as we grow older? Or do we simply become more aware of all the dangers that lurk out there and how vulnerable are the tiny flesh-and-blood bodies of…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Still Recoiling From Horror of Moore; It Could Have Been Us

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on May 22, 2013

    There have been 48 long hours now to try to grasp the magnitude of what happened to Moore, Okla. Just 24 hours before a massive tornado struck the town about 200 miles to our south, my family and I were hunkered down in the basement of my northeast Wichita home while we listened to updates of a “massive, destructive wedge tornado on the ground approaching Mid-Continent Airport.” The home that I own in West Wichita sits on the northwestern final approach path to…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Injury Makes Age an Issue but There's a Way Around It

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on March 6, 2013

    I’ve about had it with infirmary. Seriously, all I have is a 3-week-old hairline crack of the kneecap and I even talked my doctor into a minimally restrictive immobilizer. Still, there are SO many things I can’t do, or at least can’t do as easily and painlessly as I am accustomed to doing them. Wouldn’t you know that this would also be the time that one son-in-law is nursing a tear of wrist cartilage – great daddy that he is, he saved the 20-month-old…

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