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The Way I See It

Maximize Your Member Benefits


Karen Jones, Membership Services Coordinator

I am thankful for all the students who have walked into my classroom for over 30 years. There are lots of standouts, both good and not-so-good. Periodically, I like to look through my server account where I have so many years of photos stored. My favorite thing is seeing them as greenhands and following their progress until they are seniors. One of my greatest joys is getting to see a former student who is all grown up and making a difference in the adult world. I see pictures posted on Facebook of former students about to be married or graduating from college. They send me pictures of their children and tweet funny things going on in their lives. There is no predictability to it and the randomness of it always surprises. Sometimes, that alone is what makes me feel thankful. When I can look at a young man who is about to graduate from Texas A&M, eye to eye, and remember the little boy that I hauled to stock shows when he was in the 6th grade and would fall asleep in the front seat of the ag truck. Or when I am asked to prepare the flowers for a beautiful young lady on her wedding day and recall the fresh-faced girl who was my junior creed speaker several years ago. The look on her face when I hand her the bouquet for the first time is priceless and generates a memory that I will always treasure. Those are the things that I am thankful for in my professional life. I am confident that I am not alone in those experiences. I am certain that anyone who reads this article will have similar experiences to recall and fondly store away in their teaching toolbox. As I get closer to a retirement time, my toolbox gets a little fuller with the passing of each year. I am looking forward to that time when I can enjoy the time to open it and savor all of these great memories that I am so thankful for. “The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention.” – Oscar Wilde So now you know where I stand on the subject of thanks, giving thanks and being thankful. But what should I, or we, do about it? The phrases “pay it forward” and “random acts of kindness” are in the forefront of our collective social conscience now. We hear inspiring stories of FFA chapters being involved in community outreach activities. We see pictures on social media of young people giving back as a way to say “thank you”. We hear it in the words and emotions of retiring addresses of state officers as the reality of the closure of their year of service and FFA membership comes to an end. I challenge you to define the word “Thanksgiving” and develop a means of expressing those thanks in your own special way. I am looking forward to my favorite meal of the year, my wife’s turkey and dressing and layered salad, and a time when we can be with family and friends. I hope and pray that everyone has a reason to be thankful and enjoys the bountiful blessings that this holiday season brings to mind. “No duty is more urgent than that of returning thanks.” - James Allen And that’s the way I see it…

VATAT recently renewed your member benefits through American Life Insurance Company so you should have received information and a card to designate your beneficiary for the $3,500 Accidental Death & Dismemberment policy. We recommend that you fill out the card and return it in the enclosed envelope to make sure you get the full value of the benefits they offer. There is no cost for the AD&D policy. It is provided to you as a benefit of being a member of VATAT. After you fill out the card, a representative from AIL will contact you to deliver and explain the official AD&D policy that you can keep with your important papers, as well as the other no cost benefits the company provides including: • Health Discount Card Basic Program (40 to 60 percent of “out-of-pocket costs” for eye care, hearing care, prescription drugs and chiropractic.) • SmartKids/SmartParents Money Basics 101 activity book to teach kids the fundamentals of money management When you speak with the AIL representative, they will also review your current insurance situation and share information about additional life insurance plans that you may want to purchase. There is no purchase necessary. However, if you decide that purchasing additional insurance is good decision for your family, you can have confidence that you are supporting a company that supports your organization. AIL’s supplemental benefits are not in competition with any group benefits through your workplace/ employer and can complement any insurance policies you may already have. If you choose to take advantage of any insurance programs offered through AIL, your benefit program is permanent and portable throughout your lifetime. AIL’s supplemental benefits include automatic built-in features to help members during hard times, such as a lay-off waiver of premium benefit. If you qualify, your coverage lasts a lifetime and is under your independent control. If you have any questions, please contact our office or our American Income, PR Representative Michelle Baker at (806) 626-2650.


INSIDE THIS ISSUE VATAT.........................................1 - 3 Texas FFA....................................4 - 5 Foundation.............................8 Texas FFA Alumni........................12 Young Farmers....................14 - 15

Profile for Texas Ag Ed

November 2014  

Vol. VI Issue III

November 2014  

Vol. VI Issue III

Profile for texasffa