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Photo compliments of Netflix

We don't watch a ton of TV at our house, usually cowboy shows (The Ride with Cord McCoy), Alaskan adventures, and an occasional Fuller House; but when I found out that Walk, Ride, Rodeo was hitting Netflix last Friday night I knew we couldn’t wait until later to watch it!

Walk, Ride, Rodeo is a movie based on a true story about Amberley Snyder, Snyder’s story is near and dear to my heart on many levels. First, she was the 2010 Utah FFA President so even though I have never met her in person she belonged to an organization that believe in and is a leader.  Second, she is a barrel racer! I don’t know many females that grew up with horses that don’t admire the sport of barrel racing and those that put in the hours to fine tune the partnership between horse and rider. Third, her story is of overcoming tragedy and using her second chance at life to be the amazing woman she is today.

I first learned of Amberley’s story while watching The Ride with Cord McCoy one night.  I shared it with many of my nieces and nephews for multiple reasons, but was struck by her Amberley’s poise and ability to achieve.

Walk, Ride, Rodeo is based on her story, you can also find this book about her story, too. I have also included the YouTube video from where I first saw her story.  If you are looking for something to do on this cold (spring is getting closer day) find Amberley’s movie on Netflix and snuggle in for a family friendly movie that will leave you with lots to talk about. 

I would love to meet this young lady someday to shake her hand (like FFA alumni would) and tell her to keep dreaming big an huge, she is making a difference in the lives of so many young people and adults by sharing her story through speeches where she tells her story of overcoming many of life’s challenges and encourages others to do the same.

Keep dreaming big and huge, Amberley!

From the gravel road-



It's National FFA Week, did you know? It probably depends on how you are or have been impacted by FFA.

The official name of the organization is the National FFA Organization. The letters “FFA” stand for Future Farmers of America, did you know? It probably depends on if you wore a jacket or knew someone that wore a jacket.

FFA members live the motto Learning to Do, Doing to Learn, Earning to Live and Living to Serve, did you know? It probably depends on if you stood and spoke those lines from you heart.

Ok enough, because some of you probably don't know...

FFA changed the trajectory of my life. Let me say that (or type that) again. FFA changed the TRAJECTORY of my life! As a freshman in high school I joined our local FFA chapter and signed up for Ag classes. It was just something I knew I would do because I grew up on a farm and why wouldn't I? I didn't know what was going to transpire over the next 4 years though.

Backing up to freshman year, my Ag instructor (whom was pivotal in changing my life) asked me if I wanted to go to the National FFA Convention. My first thought...

Does she not know I am scared to death to stay away from home? (I had only stayed at one friend's house at that point in life.) Does she not know that I can't be away for that long?

Fast forward to my mom chaperoning and driving a van to Kansas City! Passengers- me, my husband (just my friend at the time), and his cousin. Yep, I went to the National FFA Convention (as long as my mommy went, too.) Guess what? I LOVED it! For the first time in my life, I was around like- minded, goal oriented, TEENAGERS!

Fast forward another couple of years and it was game on, I wanted to do everything I possibly could with FFA. I even took a trip to Washington D.C. (without my mom, but with a childhood friend 🙂 ) on a bus with other FFA members. I participated in contests, speeches, ran for offices, and did all of the things. I even chaired a committee at the Iowa FFA Convention and then spoke in front of that enormous audience of members.

You may be thinking ok, we got it, you learned to sleep without your mom. 🙂 Honestly, though, all of those experiences literally changed the trajectory of my life. I learned how to handle myself in a job interview, I learned how to speak in public, I learned how to run a meeting, and I learned how to sell products, I learned about finances, marketing and keeping accurate records. I learned how to set goals, and I learned how to communicate with others like me and those that weren't like me. The list could go on and on of all of the amazing lessons I learned during those 4 years. I remember standing at my senior FFA banquet sobbing and sobbing because it was coming to an end. My now father-in-law grabbed me and gave me the biggest bear hug because I literally could not get control of my emotions. The thing I didn't know then standing in the gymnasium that night is that what I had experienced in FFA was not coming to an end. It was just beginning. Life as an adult was just beginning and there is not a single day that now, today as a 38 year old woman, I don't use SOMETHING I learned or look back at something I experienced in those 4 years.

FFA changed the trajectory of my life and there are not enough words to thank those that pushed me to "Shoot for the moon" for all of those years. It made a difference!

From the Gravel Road-


Were you a member of the National FFA Organization? What did FFA teach you? Prior to reading this, did you know that the National FFA Organization existed?

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