Author: Leann.L

Inner Artist

This past week has been extremely well, I had a lot of free time this week and it was one of the first times that I wasn’t stressed, or working on something. I ended up going to one of my friends to sleep over on Saturday and I stayed there until Tuesday, it was a lot of fun and it was nice to get out of  the house. When I was there we watched a lot of movies, while in quarantine that’s been one of my favorite things to do, watching around 2 movies a day as a little reward for getting work done, or as a break from all the work. I watch movies that I’ve watched before and think are really good, and I’ve watched movies that I’ve neer seen before and have fallen in love with the movies. We watched like 5 movies at night, and we just ate a lot of junk food. 

I haven’t hung out with any of my friends in a while, but me and my friends are always taking and texting. I’ve been planning on going over to her house, but I just had a lot going on and I said that after last week I would be free, so I went over and we just stayed at her house and hung out.

On the last night I was there we ended up painted and I have always loved to paint it literally so relaxing, and stress relieving. I had never actually tried to paint anything good, because in reality I’m not the best drawer, but I like to just paint. When I was young I would paint sentences on my walls, I used to paint my doors all the time. So when she brought up the idea I thought it was a great one. I looked up something to paint on my favorite app ever, Pinterest. I decided to paint a male with a T.V. as his head, I thought it looked cool so i wanted to paint it. I spent around an hour and a half to make the painting to my liking, my friend drew her’s in like 20 minute, needless to say it was a beautiful mess. 

I painted while listening to music, not going to my phone and it was so relaxing, I was so focused on something that was peaceful rather than focusing on something causing me stress. When I came home, I begged my dad to take me to Walmart to buy more paints, canvases, and paintbrushes. Surprisingly he agreed and I bought all my materials and when we got home I began to paint. I did the same, sat down focused on the painting and listened to music and I was so relaxed. I’m glad I picked up this hobby of mine. I’m not an artist or painter at all, but I do it because I enjoy it. In this time of the world I’m glad I have found something that brings me peace in quiet in all the hectic surroundings. 

Now What?

The past few weeks have been hectique, I’ve worked extremely hard, have studied, and pushed through the hardships trying to get through all I want to accomplish. I’ve done my homework, quizzes and have been able to keep my grades up. As well as getting prepared and working on phase two of running for an Area officer position. This Monday I had my last two interviews after turning my two speeches in on Friday after making it to phase two of the process of becoming an Area officer.

 Wednesday I found out that I will not be becoming one of the Area officers. The advisor thankfully let us have the chance to turn off our audio and cameras on the zoom call as she announced the results which would be a God sent. As she called out the 7 officers from each district, my district was left to be announced to the end and my nerves grew stronger and stronger and as my name didn’t get called tears fell down my face. I cried not because I’m selfish, or jealous. I cried because of all the hard work, dedication on time that I put into this because I truly have a passion to serve and wanted to be part of the team. I cried because I wanted to be part of this amazing opportunity to be part of a team which helped others grow through the organization and help grow the next generation of leaders and I won’t be able to be that for my Area. But I know my worth and I know that everything happens for a reason, so I know I will overcome this loss and be strong. 

After the announcements as tears fell down my face I had to announce to everyone who helped me through the process of running and who have been there by my side and who have guided me and encouraged me along the way. These words helped me calm down and have faith in the future, and in myself.

 I plan on doing something big this year, with all this new time that I have I don’t know what it will be yet, maybe  I will create my own blog, a business, possibly I’ll get into photograph I’m not sure but i do know I want to work on doing something, maybe get my grades better and focus more on school and what my future endeavors hold. 

But I will take my own advice as I said in my canaduate speech. I will not fear the ups and downs but embrace them, because they are part of my journey in the organization and now life. I will continue to take the advice I have preached through the years and take them into my everyday life, I’m glad I have got to take part in this experience and although the end result wasn’t the one I hoped for it was a ride  that was impactful, memorable, and one I wouldn’t  mind  to experience again. 

Virtual Interview

With Covid-19 happening at the moment, a lot of my plans for the upcoming months have drastically changed. One of those plans I was looking forward to and was excited to embark on the process is running to become an FFA Area officer. For a moment, I was scared of a postponement until all of the quarantine was over. But thankfully, with all the technology that we have today, for the first time in history, everything will be conducted online.

On August 18, my plan was to begin phase 1 of running for Area Officer. At the moment, I currently serve as the Secretary for Citrus Valley District, and I hope to soon become and serve as an Area officer. The officer positions are given to 7 officers, one from each district, and there are multiple members running from each district. I hope that I get the chance to represent my district as their area officer.

Phase 1 will all be done all electronically, and it was only postponed by a week to August the 25th. I have been slowing but surely getting my essay together, and I have turned it in already. We will be starting everything Saturday on the 25th, and I am extremely nervous, as everything will be virtual, I will be given time slots for everything due that day. I need to write an essay for 90 minutes, at 8:00 in the morning, take a test on the organization at around 10:00 am and then do my interview around 12:00 in the afternoon.

 I hope to make it to phase 2; there, I will have another interview, will turn in my resume, and perform a speech. That will be between the top two officers from each district, and after they pick the officer that will be an Area officer, there is also a speech that is needed to be given in order for positions to be placed. Although if I were to become an officer, I wouldn’t mind the position I was to get. I truly just want to be part of the team, and motivate members and with the platform that I do have. It has been a goal of mine to achieve ever since I attended my first ever Area leadership camp, and those officers impacted my life to become a leader. I want to do the same and pay it forward and form the next generation of leaders for the organization. 

I can’t really tell if me being at home is benefiting me or not; I think it’s just making the process more stressful. I think the fact that I am home makes me want to keep things on to the side because I think I have time because of the fact that I am home. I need to study, brush up on info, and practice for my interview. I am ready to grow from the experience whatever the outcome; maybe it’s all a learning experience. 

Q: Are You Hungry Or Just Bored?

Not much has changed since my last blog; I’m still in the same routine. I think I can even admit that my routine/habits have gotten worse. I go to sleep at 7:00 in the morning and wake up around 4:00 in the afternoon. This has changed my work ethic tremendously. As I wake up, I don’t truly get up, I lay in bed watching HULU, my streaming service of choice after watching everything, including Tiger King on Netflix. Man, I binge watch that documentary all in one night; after that first episode, I was hooked. I stay up binging a whole show, so when I wake up my mind is on that show asking myself: what happens next? I wake up and do the exact same thing again, and put my homework to the side for it to be done right before 11:59 PM or turn it in late. If my sleeping schedule doesn’t get fixed anytime soon, I’m just going to become worse at turning in my assignments. The reality is when I wake up, I only see the sun for 4 hours, so for me, when I see the sun go down, that has always been an indication for me to go to sleep, and because I’m not sleepy obviously. Instead, I lay in bed and watch more television.

 I would say that this quarantine has had its right and wrong, the good thing is that I have learned when to snack and when not to and what exactly to snack on. At the beginning I would go to the fridge every hour, now I only go when I’m truly hungry before I would just go because I was bored and had nothing else to do but eat. I live right next to a Dollar General store, literal walking distance, so I would go next door to buy whatever it was that I was craving, cookies, chips, rice Krispie treats, and what was once an advantage had then become a curse, when I began to realize that my binge eating was unhealthy (now I just need to recognize that so is binge-watching). Lucky that all got shut down when my parents became extremely strict about leaving the house, now they won’t even let us get anything next door if we ever want to buy something they are the ones to go next door and get it for us. 

On one of my parents’ grocery store trips, my parents asked me what I wanted from the store, and instead of saying the usual junk food, I asked for yogurt, strawberries, berries,  mango’s, and granola. Now when I do get hungry, I’ll ask myself the question: are you hungry or just bored? Most times, I’m just bored, but when I truly want to snack on something, I’ll eat that instead of the popcorn and candies in the pantry, yogurt with granola and fruit is definitely my new go-to. Now that that habit is fixed, I just need to figure out how to go to sleep and wake up at an appropriate hour.

Netflix: Are you still watching?

I’ve been stuck at home for the past 12 days, and as much as I feel extremely productive, I also feel unproductive and lazy, I feel as though I have nothing to look forward to and have nothing to strive for at the moment.

I’ve been doing the best I can to keep up and do my assignment, but it’s been a struggle. The best way I’ve been able to do them and the best advice that I can give is to keep everything in order and have it visual where you can see it and scratch it out when it has been done.

For me this past school year, I have been using a planner on and off, and at the beginning of this week, I took it out of my backpack and looked at all of my assignments that had already been posted and wrote them down. This past week’s load has been full, and so has my page on my planner. However, I feel so productive; I have been doing all my assignments, even turning them in before the due date. On the downside, while doing that I’m in bed, I’m watching Netflix, snacking on food, and taking naps after everything is done. This is extremely different from being in class. It is a different environment; it’s not a learning environment. I think of home, a place to relax, a place I am comfortable in, and a place where I can get away from the stress I have and the real world. It has been difficult taking that comfort zone to me and making it into what is supposed to be a learning environment because now that is what my home has to be, because of the unfortunate circumstances that we are in at the moment.

My day consists of me waking up at noon, and going to sleep around the windows of 3:00 am and 5:00 am. I get up, brush my teeth, wash my face, and head to eat breakfast. Then I come back into my room, or what my mom has been referring to recently, “my cave” and start on my homework and put on the new season of “All American,” while I’m at it. After all my homework is done, I usually switch between my apps on my phone till I get bored and turn back to Netflix. I would like to say that my online classes are going pretty smoothly, and I know that my teachers are trying their best to keep us engaged, and still teach us from multiple online approaches. I believe everyone is handling the situation as best as they can; it’s a big help for families in the district for the district to still provide breakfast and lunch for students as well as loaning out technology and other materials. I believe that all the parties involved are trying to make the best of the situation and do the best they can during this unexpected crisis, and that’s all that any of us can do.

What it means to be Queen

Twenty-four young ladies from around the Rio Grande Valley come together to represent their communities namesake, product, and the citrus industry as they compete to become citrus royalty, Queen Citriana.

Kaylee Silva represented the City of Palmview and the Royal Palm Tree as the Duchess of Royal Palms on Jan. 23. Kaylee was announced as the 84th Queen Citriana for the Texas Citrus Fiesta.

In the 2021 coronation, Kaylee will take on the duties of representing the area’s business, industry, and community hope which will remain hers until the following years’ coronation.

“The Texas Citrus Fiesta was established in 1932 to help promote the citrus industry in the Rio Grande Valley, the main purpose of the Texas Citrus Fiesta, is basically just spreading awareness and advocating for our citrus industry, because our citrus industry is at risk of completely ending, and being completely destroyed,”  Kaylee said.

The honor of being future Queen Citriana is elevated by being the first representative from Palmview to take the crown. The city of Palmview established Feb. 5 as Kaylee Silva day to commemorate their pride.

“I feel very proud to be from the City of Palmview like I didn’t only try to win this title for myself, I tried to win it for the city,” said Kaylee, “that was my main goal, basically making history for the city of Palmview.”

As Queen Citriana, Kaylee’s duties will consist of advocating and spreading awareness of the citrus industry throughout the State of Texas. As well as making individuals knowledgeable on the importance of the sector, and being a role model to younger generations.

“To get the title of Queen Citriana, you need to be knowledgeable on the Texas citrus industry and the Texas Citrus Fiesta not only that but the product that you represent,” said Kaylee, “it’s about being knowledgeable and being smart and having brains; beauty and brains.”

Kaylee plans to attend Texas A&M University in Kingsville, where she hopes to collaborate with researchers to save the Texas citrus industry. Establishing an organization to advocate for the citrus industry in her school all fall in line with her future goals.

“Being named Queen Citriana symbolizes my hard work and dedication, and to me it means being a role model for my community and being a representation of my family, because of my family I have accomplished so much, especially gaining this title,” said Kaylee.

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