October 17, 2017

Sage green, bright orange, and golden Cinderella pumpkins line a hay-covered walkway at a pumpkin patch.

Most of the time I consider myself a person who exercises self-control. But take me to the pumpkin patch and I lose all reason. So many colors, shapes, and textures! Tiny pumpkins! HUGE pumpkins! I don’t want just one of each, I want multiples of everything available.

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A young girl stands beside a cow at the Mississippi State Fair.

From the Field: Mississippi State Fair

October 12, 2017

You see the Ferris wheel lit up, you smell the funnel cakes and you hear barn animal sounds….That’s right! It’s the Mississippi State Fair! Many 4-H’ers from across the state travel to Jackson for a chance to compete in the show ring. We wanted to share some of our favorite pictures from this past weekend!

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Plastic debris is seen in an open black trash bag sitting on the beach at the 2016 Mississippi Coastal Cleanup.

Three ways to help keep our coasts clean

October 10, 2017

How much trash does your family generate? How much of that trash is single-use plastic, like water bottles and food packaging?

You might be surprised to know that much of that plastic ends up littering our waterways, beaches and oceans. In fact, the No. 1 item polluting these areas is plastic.

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Two women who attended the Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon pictured with speaker Molly May.

From the Field: National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October 5, 2017

When October comes around, you not only see the usual fall decorations but also the color pink! From athletes to electrical power linemen, people don the color pink to raise awareness of breast cancer—a disease that is diagnosed in one out of eight women.

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A diverse group of youth displaying 4-H signs.

So you want to join 4-H

October 3, 2017

Ready “to make the best better”? October 1 is the official start of the 4-H year!*

*If you don’t know what 4-H is, start here, with 4-H Wants You!

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Two men hold a hammerhead shark while conducting research aboard a boat.

From the Field: Trawling with Mississippi Master Naturalists

September 28, 2017

Our Extension photographer Kevin Hudson went out to sea to snag some great photos of the Master Naturalist training last weekend. We wanted to share a couple with you! On hand was our new Extension marine fisheries specialist Marcus Drymon. 

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Deer University logo showing buck with huge rack.

Top tips for deer hunting season

September 26, 2017

Gear ready? Check.

Hunter’s Safety Course & hunting license? Check.

Know the rules for your hunting spot? Check.

I’ve learned a lot about hunting since marrying into Mississippi 10 years ago. And whenever I really want to score points with my husband, I bring home information from MSU Extension experts. Now everyone can access science-based information whenever they want it, thanks to a new podcast, Deer University!

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Seven women smile as they hold beaded windchimes.

From the Field: Are You Feeling Crafty?

September 22, 2017

We like to think of local Extension offices as community hubs! These are places where you know you can learn from respected experts in a comfortable atmosphere. County Extension offices are also places where you can flex your creative muscle and get crafty! Extension agents across the state offer chances for you to make something fun with your own two hands. Most likely, you will leave with a new handmade project and new friends!
 

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headshot of Dr. Jay McCurdy, PhD

Three tips for an award-winning lawn

September 19, 2017

Are you longing for a great looking yard next summer – the kind that wins the neighborhood Yard of the Month award? Well, there are a few things you need to do now to get that lush, green carpet.

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Host Natasha Haynes stands in front of a green screen filming a scene for The Food Factor.

From the Field: Behind the Scenes with “The Food Factor”

September 14, 2017

Every month “The Food Factor” crew assembles to film the next month’s episodes. This week we were in Clinton to talk about rice, a Mediterranean twist on macaroni and cheese, and our plans to add new, fun flavors to our family favorites.

Our host, Extension agent Natasha Haynes, makes it look easy, but she memorizes all of her lines – no teleprompter here! She’s also a good sport, because you never know what kind of crazy ideas the videographers will generate.

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A bowl of Italian ground beef and rice in a rainbow-striped bowl sits on a red tablecloth with a red and white cloth napkin and a spoon.

Real Life Recipe: Italian Ground Beef with Rice

September 13, 2017

Sometimes when I cook rice, I make too much. Use leftover rice for this fast and easy one-skillet recipe. Be sure to season it to your liking with salt, pepper, and garlic powder or fresh minced garlic! You can also customize it with your favorite vegetables.

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About Extension for Real Life

Extension for Real Life is a product of the MSU Extension Service’s Office of Agricultural Communications.

That’s a long way of saying we are professional communicators who get to talk about food, families, 4-H, flowers, and farming for a living. Pretty good gig, right?

The three main writers for the blog are Ellen Graves (Seamstress of Social Media Strategy), Susan Collins-Smith (Content Connector) and Keri Lewis (Captain Cat Herder). But we get by with a lot of help from our friends in Ag Comm and Extension!

You can reach us at 662-325-2262 or extreallife@msstate.edu