Hey y’all, Happy Thanksgiving from C3 Cattle! This week having both parents home from work has given us the chance to haul gravel, move hay, work cows, read a book or two and even put up the Christmas decor… yes we put up decorations before Thanksgiving (with dads permission of course). Regardless, we are soaking up quality time with the family and with the cows today and hope you do the same. Happy Holidays from the Cantrell Crew.
Hey y’all, C3 Cattle Co. is in a season of growth. As you have probably seen, Parker got married, I am off at college, dad is loving his role as a superintendent, and mom is doing what she does best, taking care of everything in between. Calves are popping out like crazy, C3 bought a dairy cow to assist with the bottle babies – her name is Ruby and we love her, we have two new barn cats who drive momma chelle wild, the chickens still lay more eggs than we can eat, basically, if you can think of it its probably happening on the funny farm.
On a more serious note, we are in a season of growth purely by the grace of God. For me in general, The Lord is teaching me a lot about self identification. Most of my adult life I have found my identity in the roles I participate in. From FFA positions, leadership opportunities on campus, the relationships I was in and even how hard I worked at school or on the farm. It is easy as a leader to get caught up in valuing yourself only based on relative things like “success” which is measured solely on an exterior level. Being in a growing season, hence the title of this blog, I am growing to try to identify who I am outside of what I do. Which is clearly easier said than done, but I know for a fact God put me in this season for a purpose and that would be selfish of me to rush the why behind that purpose. A few days back a friend told me, “He (God) is turning your mess into your message,” and man did that sting. The reality of this statement hits me each day as a reminder that my story is being continuously shaped. Though I have no set plan of what’s next for this journey of identifying the real KC, I do have plans to keep loving on Hereford cattle, tending to my family, growing academically, and rooting myself in Christ.
Psalm 119:114 says, “You are my shelter and my shield, I hope in your word.” The time is now to find my identity in His shelter and His shield, maybe for you it too is that time. Though the things of this world will fade, the fulfillment, knowledge, presence, and love of God could never. As life continues to change and grow I hope you know you have a friend and encourager in me and in The Lord.
Hey y’all, I just wrapped up the coolest experience of my life! In May of 2021 at the completion of my State FFA Officer term I was slated to be Oklahoma’s National FFA Officer Candidate. After stepping into this role it meant I spent much time preparing for the extensive process that occurs at the National Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana. This process looks like a series of interviews, speeches, workshop facilitation segments, a virtual round and more, all to determine the six members who have the once and a lifetime chance to represent FFA on the national level. I arrived in Indianapolis to start this experience on Oct. 22 where I then completed “Phase One” of interviews and an extemporaneous speech for the weekend before cuts are made to separate finalists from the non-advancing candidates. On the night of Oct. 25 I received a letter that contained the bolded word “Congratulations,” amongst other sentences that in that moment were a blur, overall meaning I was moving onto Phase Two to keep competing in the process. For the next few days I had the chance to keep showing off my skill, create relationships with fellow candidates, explore the city of Indianapolis, and even go on stage to announce my candidacy. All of this led to the final session of convention, session seven, with the announcement of the newly elected team. Though it has already been a week, I still remember that vivid feeling of the loud music vibrating through my body, the bright strobe lights, and the nervous jitters. I also remember the feeling of not hearing your name called and the feeling in the bottom of your stomach when you don’t reach one of your dreams. I say this not for pity, I say this because serving as a national officer candidate is an honor and it was a growing experience. When I was an eighth grader I heard the term “YOGOWYPI,” say that five times fast, silly right? It stands for “You only get out what you put in.” I put in my whole heart to the FFA and in return the FFA has provided me with opportunities, friendships, and memories that could never be forgotten. Though I will never forget the feeling of standing in the front row of the floor seating with thousands of blue and gold jackets behind me and a handful of people waiting for my name to be called, I too could never forget all that I gained from the process. Knowledge about myself and the agricultural industry, late nights with friends running around the Indiana Convention Center, coloring books and lots of Panera soup, plus a whole lot of support that created an incredible week.
If you too are going through a season like mine of growth, heartbreak, and self identification, I encourage you to draw near to Galatians 6:9. “Let us not become weary in doing good, for in due time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
Hey y’all, long time no see! Since my, Karstyn, senior year I have been on the go non-stop. I graduated from Skiatook High School in the heat of COVID-19 and started my freshman year at Oklahoma State University, Go Pokes, double majoring in agricultural education and agricultural communications. I then had the incredible chance to serve the Oklahoma FFA as a State Officer where I traveled the state of Oklahoma meeting with members and business and industry professionals. Steve and Michelle, mom and dad, have been busy at work with dad taking a new role as a superintendent at Caney Valley Public Schools and mom working hard with golf coaching and the joy of teaching eighth grade students. Parker graduated from OSU with an Animal Science degree, entered the work force, then married the most incredible woman, Baylee. It is easy to see, we have had our hands full. I look forward to getting back in touch with the blogging world and hope to keep advocating for agriculture with my passions of talking and teaching.
In order to find success, no matter the category in life, one thing I have learned is that you must keep trying. When it comes to breeding cattle, I am glad we did. In the spring of 2019 I had the sweetest Hereford Heifer. I hauled her from show to show and never let go of the halter. When it came time to breed I couldn’t help but feel excited to know that in nine months I could be a grandma to another Hereford baby, however my plan wasn’t going accordingly said my dad as we had trouble getting her stuck and safe with calf. Months passed and dad said she was still open but I knew if we A.I.’ed her one more time it would work, and I was right! New Years is something to celebrate, but the birth of a calf from a well loved momma; that is something special. I am more than thrilled to start out 2020 as it is now my graduation year, a year of last speech contests and FFA banquets, a year of moving away from home to start college, but also a year with a new born Hereford heifer. Happy New Year from the C3 Crew!
Well, December 25th came and though it was sunny and seventy degrees Santa still found his way to C3 Cattle Co. My brother and I awoke on Christmas morning to the smell of biscuits and gravy as well as blue and gold sausage with the Christmas tree lit and cows outside our open windows. As mom, dad, Parker and I sipped coffee with the Macy’s Christmas Day Parade on, sitting in our new Sullivan Flare hoodies courtesy of Santa we held great conversation about the birth of our Lord and Savior, the calves that needed to be watered and fed before the family party that evening, and the wonderful presents that were delicately wrapped by elves in The North Pole. As the morning festivity’s concluded, the cattle were taken care of we headed to God’s Country, Stillwater Oklahoma, to mingle with family and play a mean game of Dirty Santa! C3 had a very merry day and we are sending your family and ranch our best wishes for the holiday season!
Growing up in a house full of Oklahoma State University alumni I knew that there was no choice but for me to follow in the family footsteps and apply to be an OSU Cowboy as well. In early August our mailbox sang loudly the loyal and true words declaring my acceptance for the fall of 2020 and my parents could not have been more proud than to watch their youngest get into the school that has helped aid dreams for many of our family members and create many memories. Once the calm returned I then had to decide who I was going to experience life as a poke with and I had no better friends come to mind than my FFA pals Adyson Blakey, Micah McAtee and Tayten Lierle. Once the idea was proposed there was no change of my heart and nothing but dorm room plans from there on out. With the months that have passed we have maintained annual roomie get togethers each month to discuss our excitement and further life plans being executed at Oklahoma State. Nothing beats having built in best friends because of this great organization that I can now share a college experience with! Watch out OSU 2020, we are coming for you!
Though this winter season has been up and down, waking up to 30 degree weather and leaving school in the 60’s, the season at C3 is a season of growth. One evening last week I had the chance to feed and water alone before mom and dad came home and while I sat in the Kubota watching an assortment of red, white, and black cattle eating I noticed just how much the herd has changed. A few short weeks ago our new born babies were stumbling as they walked and now they’re running at full speed chasing after the donkeys in the pasture. Let another couple weeks go by and they will be too big to run under fences or in between the legs of their mothers. As cattle grow, the sun rises and sets, hay is ate and the cats lay in bales of straw I am reminded of just how important it is to cherish the little things I notice on the ranch before my time runs out and college consumes my schedule. As I breathe in the holiday spirit and smell of cattle I am growing ever thankful that C3 is in a season of love, advancements, and Christmas Cheer. Best wishes for the holiday season from our family cattle co. to yours.
“Life is a highway, I’m gonna ride it all night long.” These were the lyrics blaring as I entered the conference room along side a life long FFA pal, Madison Walters, at my final OKFFA ALD. You see Madison and I had already shared multiple conversations and hugs before we walked in but everything changes when your favorite songs play across the sound system and you just have to look at one another, throw your hands up and squeal with 300 other members from around the state. The quality of music was above average and the experience was worthwhile, but we came to be invested in by professional public speakers utilizing just 22 hours to pour in as much knowledge and enthusiasm as possible. While in attendance all members had the chance to find a small group of ten individuals and come up with different ways to advocate for FFA as well as share personal experience in our time through this organization. As time with small groups fastly concluded, the dance ended, meals were ate, I came to the realization that my final ALD was over but I could not be more pleased with the people I spent it with as well as the new friends and staff that I met.