• P.J. Griekspoor

    Holidays Are Over; Let Education Begin

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 27, 2010

    I always think of November and early December as the "season of conventions" because almost every organization has an annual meeting somewhere in there. The rest of the winter is education conferences and one of the biggest is coming up Jan. 25-26 in Salina: the annual No-Till on the Plains Conference. This one is special whether you are currently no-till or just thinking about it. It's a chance to learn what no-till is all about, explore how you might gain soil health, productivity and…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Where Did The Time Go?

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 21, 2010

    So, just no time ago, I had plenty of time to finish shopping and wrapping and cooking and all was well. And now, suddenly, there's three days until Christmas Eve. How did this happen? All I can say is you get distracted by work, or life, or whatever for just a second and everything piles up behind you. I don't have much more time to blog. I have to shop. And wrap. And…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    The 3-Year-Old Proves Beyond Doubt that 2-Year-Olds Have Long-Term Memory

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 16, 2010

    There's nothing I love more than the opportunity to take one of my seven grandchildren on a "day with grandma to the farm." Today was Jackson's turn. He is three and a bundle of energy and curiosity. My mission was photos at a farm near Liebenthal and chats with a wheat breeder and a beef researcher. Since the trip took us close to Hays, home of the Sternberg Museum (or as Jackson calls it, the "dinosaur zee-um"), I decided a side trip to the museum he has inquired about almost daily…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    How Can Time Go This Fast?

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 12, 2010

    I was just looking up from the newspaper tonight when I realized that the last time I was sitting right here, like this, was a week ago, looking over the Sunday ads. So where did a week go? I ask msyelf that question more and more often these days, but especially during this season when I had hoped to get so many things done and so few of them seem to be happening. Where does the time go? Just no-time ago, when I was a little kid, it was a long, long, time from Thanksgiving to…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Deciphering The Need To Light Up the Season

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 11, 2010

    I've been out in the wind and the cold, putting more effort than I can describe into the effort to get my lawn properly lit for Christmas. First, there's the challenge of getting driveway lights all lined up at the same height and in a straight line. Keep in mind that I am a person who can't draw a straight line on a piece of paper if I have a ruler and the paper is lined. If you are thinking lost cause, you are really close to right. But hey, I try. I have this general view that more…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Here's a Project That You Just Might Want to Support

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 10, 2010

    I don't know how many of you have heard of Numana. I hadn't until today. But I think this El Dorado, Kan.-based non-profit company has the potential to change the world. Numana is dedicated to providing food for the starving people of the world on an emergency basis. They aren't about solving world hunger in the Norman Borlaug model. They are about "now" meals for kids that will die tomorrow if they don't eat today. They engage thousands of volunteers to package meals for millions…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    AgriNxt Conference Gives a Lot of Things to Think About

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 10, 2010

    I spent all day at the AgriNxt Conference in Wichita hearing multiple speakers address issues that impact the future of agriculture in Kansas and America. There are a bunch of things to think about, but among the top ones are a presentation from Keith Miller, president of the U.S. Meat Federation talking about challenges to gaining access for export markets, Joseph Glauber, Chief Economist with USDA, talking about the economic outlook for ag and a whole bunch of people talking about…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    It is Hard to Remember Sometimes, Things Are Only Things

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 6, 2010

    I'll admit it. For a couple of minutes when I heard the unmistakable sound of breaking glass and realized the two-year-old was AWOL, I was really upset. And when I realized that she was standing on my computer printer and the broken porcelain included the nativity scene that I have displayed every year for the last 30 years, there was a moment when I almost lost it. And then I looked at her little face. She didn't MEAN to destroy anything valuable; she was looking for where the lights…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Driving Through Flint Hills at Sunrise is Its Own Reward

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 3, 2010

    I was reminded of something Friday that most of us have long experienced: when you buzz through Kansas at 70 mph on the freeway, bent on getting from there to there, it is really easy to miss the beauty of being HERE. I had to roll out of bed at 5:30 a.m. to make it to one of my favorite tasks as editor of Kansas Farmer: picking this year's class of Master Farmer/Master Farm Homemaker award recipients. My reward for that was being in the Flint Hills at sunrise. I know some of you wake up…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Just an Observation: KLA Convention Place to Be If You Love Cowboy Hats and Wranglers

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 2, 2010

    It is entirely possible that the annual KLA Convention brings together in one room the largest collection of men in Wrangler jeans, cowboy hats and boots that you will find anywhere. As an attendee at today's convention, I found myself trying to figure out why some cattlemen prefer white hats and others tend to go solid black. And why are Wranglers a cowboy icon? Why not Levis? In the movies, the good guys wear white hats and the bad guys wear black -- but at today's KLA convention I…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Upbeat Message From CattleFax Analyst Improves Joy of Season For Cattlemen

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 2, 2010

    There were a lot more smiles in the room at Thursday's opening day of the Kansas Livestock Association annual convention, as members celebrated 10 consecutive months of profitability for all segments of the cattle industry, from cow-calf producers to processors. And analyst Randy Blach from CattleFax told the group to expect more of the same in the coming months, as supplies continue to draw down and demnad is showing strong signs of a comeback. It was a major turnaround for the crowd…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Season of Comfort and Joy Opens With a Special Joy

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on December 1, 2010

    There's no other season quite like the space between Thanksgiving and Christmas when you get to reflect on all the precious gifts that make life wonderful. And sometimes the greatest joys come where you least expect them and where, I admit, in some of my earlier years, I didn't even recognize them. Today started with an early morning flurry of text messages, announced by several consecutive "dongs" on my cell phone when I was barely awake. One daughter's just-repaired computer appears to…

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