Now that the presents have been opened, the snow has been moved, and all those Christmas cookies have been devoured, it’s time to look ahead to the new year. But first, I’d like to share an overview of my December activities. This is a busy season, full of celebration, and I was able to tack on some unique events to my schedule this past month.
I began December speaking with Minnesota Milk early in the month at their annual meeting and getting to know some of the members present that day. It was wonderful speaking with some of the dairy farmers I represent. 
One thing I love about the holidays is all the beautiful lights. My family and I drive around and look at them in our county each winter. Naturally, I was delighted when I got to spend an evening at a Christmas light show on a dairy farm. Bremer Farms hosted a great drive-thru light show, complete with farm facts, videos on combining corn, a pair of Holstein calves for all to see, and Santa and Mrs. Claus. It was a chilly night, but we bundled up to enjoy all of it, and I enjoyed hearing the squeals of excitement from those of all ages as they approached the two calves which were named Dasher and Dancer. 
My next event was my first virtual classroom visit. I visited with a classroom of fourth grade students from Albert Lea and shared what my role as Princess Kay of the Milky Way looks like. One of their questions pertained to the popular reality dating television show, “The Bachelorette,” and if I had been on the show. I promise you this didn’t come out of left field; the students were certainly on to something. For those of you who don’t follow this series as much as I do, this year’s bachelorette is from Minnesota. As part of one of her dates, she and the men toured one of Minnesota’s dairy farms to milk cows, feed calves, scoop manure and sculpt butter. This meant that Brenna Connelly, the 67th Princess Kay of the Milky Way, was on the show and helped the group with butter sculpting. So, I did have to break the news to the students that I wasn’t the Princess Kay who was on the show, but they still thought it was so cool that Brenna was. 
Though most of us don’t have the opportunity to guest star on national television, we can set goals, or resolutions, to achieve greatness over the course of the next year. Maybe you want to spend more time with family, see more of the beautiful landmarks across Minnesota or perhaps continue to better your herd. Whatever your resolution may be, there are lots of ways you can find success in working toward your goal over the course of 2022 and beyond. For starters, write it down. I find myself much more driven to complete things if I see it in writing. That leads me to my second tip. Share your resolution with someone close to you. This helps hold yourself accountable for the goal you are working toward accomplishing and keeps you motivated to complete it. Third, evaluate your progress frequently. This can be done in specific intervals you can set monthly or weekly. Ask yourself if you are content with how far you’ve come with your resolution thus far.  
If resolutions in the new year aren’t for you, that’s OK too. The holiday season and new year is all about celebrating and reflecting on the past year and all that we have been able to witness, experience and how we have grown as individuals. In my opinion, looking back on this past year, we should all be incredibly proud to ring in 2022. As we move forward into this new year, I would like to extend a greeting from me to all of you. May you all have a safe and enjoyable year. 
Princess Kay of the Milky Way Anna Euerle serves as the Minnesota dairy community’s goodwill ambassador. Princess Kay is very active doing school visits, representing dairy farmers at the Fuel Up To Play 60 activities in conjunction with the Minnesota Vikings, and sharing the importance of dairy farming and dairy foods at appearances across Minnesota. 
Euerle grew up in Litchfield, Minnesota, working on her family’s dairy farm. She will soon graduate from Ridgewater College in Agribusiness with a dairy emphasis. In her free time she enjoys cooking, baking and being outdoors.