Tuesday, February 27, 2024

FFA Week: A Look Into My Journal

As a state officer, many days are a blur. In order to best capture the most special moments of this year, I have turned to saving vlogs to my TikTok drafts and journaling at the end of the day (that is, when I remember to). All throughout FFA Week, I reflected on each day and chapter visited, so I thought that I would take this opportunity to share a little of what was written. Here’s a look at the 2024 National FFA Week through my journal!


Today I got to start FFA Week early! I joined the Monrovia FFA Chapter for their all-school convocation where students got to compete by grade for points, including an Official Dress Race! The Sophomore Class won, and I don’t think I have ever seen anyone put Official Dress on so fast!

Joy(s) of the Day: Visiting with FFA Members is so fulfilling and fueling!


The Meats and Milk Quality & Products CDEs were at Purdue today! The boys helped with the meats contest…there was NO way I was standing in a meat cooler (haha), and I helped with MQP.

Joy(s) of the Day: Learning about a new contest + Meeting our friend, Brenden, for Coldstone!


This morning I met the Cascade FFA Chapter at Westbridge Church in Danville, and then went to lunch with them! I was even able to fit in a nap at the Center before going to church and dinner with the Indiana Ag & Tech FFA Chapter at Gateway Cowboy Church in Trafalgar!

Joy(s) of the Day: Lots of laughs with members from two chapters!


Eastern Hancock held a Chapter Officer Retreat at an AirBnB in Westfield. We had lots of fun learning and laughing together. My parents also got to accompany me to the Indiana Leadership Prayer Breakfast Participant’s Dinner!

Joy(s) of the Day: Facilitating to a small group for the first time in a while + Seeing my parents!


An early 3:30 AM start to get ready for the Indiana Leadership Prayer Breakfast! I had the honor and privilege of introducing Governor Holcomb for this event and meeting with several legislators and leaders of our Great State. Then I headed to Advocacy Day, where my teammates and I got to interact with several INFFA Members and stood on the Senate Floor to receive our Joint Resolution! I headed to Franklin Community High School to help their Chapter’s Officers deliver cookies to the community’s fire departments!

Joy(s) of the Day: Seeing my teammates and sharing laughs and memories before we headed our own separate ways again!


Lots of BIG schools! To my surprise, I didn’t even get lost as I navigated through Indianapolis and three of the largest schools I have ever been to! Area 31 FFA, Beech Grove FFA, and Decatur Central FFA were awesome to hang out with and facilitate to. I had so much fun! I stayed after school with Decatur Central for Tacos and Tye-Dye before I headed to Indian Creek for their Chapter Meeting!

Joy(s) of the Day: Learning about more urban FFA Chapters + sharing my story with members and hearing theirs!


A much needed morning of sleeping in (aka sleeping until 5:45)! I got to start my morning by joining Whiteland FFA for their Teach the Teachers Event before heading to Edgewood for a couple of class periods. I stopped by the Leadership Center to do some Social Media work and then ventured to the Waldron FFA Chapter Meeting for a delicious meal and fellowship with their members and community. 

Joy(s) of the Day: Seeing Mr. Ramey and Mrs. Meredith when I stopped by the Center! It’s always good to see the familiar faces of our staff members!


I can’t believe the week is almost over! TOday was my last day with members and chapters. I joined the Danville FFA Chapter for their delicious breakfast…they weren’t kidding when they said that it was the best biscuits and gravy ever! I then returned to Cascade for their Chapter Lunch, where we heard from Co-Alliance, before venturing to Bloomington to work in Starbucks for a little while. I went to Hoosier Hills’ Community Cornhole Event then headed back to my weekend home!

Joy(s) of the Day: A last day full of new and old friends and good food!


My FFA Week activities may be over, but my busy life doesn’t stop on a weekend home! I got to see some of my good friends from many different states at a sheep sale today, stopped with my family for lunch on the way back home, and then met with three of my best friends from high school for dinner!

Joy(s) of the Day: Being surrounded by the people and things (food and good livestock) that I love most!


Sundays are for sleeping in….extra late. Once I finally woke up this morning, I went to church with my family. When we got home we grabbed some lunch and my brother and I spent a little time in the barn before I went back to the Center to start my week with my teammates!

Joy(s) of the Day: Reuniting with my teammates after NINE days!

Week Reflection ~

I am so thankful for this opportunity to serve, travel, meet new people, and be abundantly blessed by the little things in life. After driving 1,362 miles and meeting with hundreds of students and members, I find myself filled with joy. From playing Brain-Games with Area 31 to sharing laughs around an early-morning breakfast at Danville, I could not have asked for a better week filled with better people. I’m especially thankful to be reflecting and writing this from my parents’ kitchen table after sharing these special memories with them. Life is so good!

There were eight whole pages of writing that I documented throughout FFA Week, so I opted to save us all a little time and only share the basics, but if there’s anything that I learned and would like to share about this special time in our lives, I encourage you to live in the present and count all of the joys that each day brings.

With an Abundance of Love,

Kelby Roberts, State President

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

My Valentine’s Day, Christmas Tree!

Growing up my family had a Christmas tree up all year long. I know this might sound crazy, but hear me out… For each season my family would decorate this four foot tree with different ornaments to create a different theme for the tree. Other than Christmas, my favorite theme was always Valentine’s Day because our tree was covered with pink hearts and red ornaments. 

Each season of the year brought a different theme for our tree. It was so much fun to decorate each season uniquely and see it everyday in our living room as a reminder to celebrate the different seasons of the year.

This Valentine’s season I am staying busy by spending time with my family, celebrating Conner’s birthday with my teammates, reuniting with friends, and preparing for FFA Week! With everything going on I am trying to remind myself to find the beauty in these unique and cherishable moments. After a few Pinterest searches, I actually found a few ways to live more in the moment, and I thought I’d share!

  1. Journaling - Although it can be hard to sit down after a busy day of school, work, or travel, it is an awesome way to reflect on the good parts of your life. What conversations did you share, what made you smile, what was an act of kindness you received? It is an awesome way to look back and be more intentional in your life. 

  2. Monotasking - Monotasking means you are taking the time to focus on one thing at a time. While I am definitely a victim of multitasking, I have been holding myself accountable to only working on one project at a time. This has allowed me to do everything to my best ability and made me appreciate my small accomplishments whether it be speeches, conversations, or friendships. I would encourage you to try it too! 

  3. Useful Time - This month I am trying to be more mindful of how I spend my time. Not necessarily limiting my time but making it more purposeful and meaningful. Oftentimes I find myself scrolling through TikTok or Instagram before I go to sleep. Although I haven’t stopped completely, and I don’t think I ever will, I have found that I find calling my family and friends or reading a Bible deviation gives my time a lot more meaning and joy. 

Throughout the busyness in our lives it is important to find the small celebrations or little things that help make life more meaningful and enjoyable. My little four foot tree is always reminding me to celebrate the small seasons or little moments in our lives. Wishing you all the best Valentine’s Day!

With love, 

Maddie Denton, State Secretary