It is that time of year – for resolutions; that moment when you look at yourself and realize that maybe there could be a few improvements. You decide to manage your money better, to exercise more, to lose weight, to eat healthier and more. The options are truly endless.
    With a resolution in hand you wade straight into January with the best of intentions. This time you are going to succeed. Unfortunately for most people, that resolution is beginning to fade by the time January ends. Often the resolution to spend 25% less money, lose 15 pounds or to exercise every day comes up as unrealistic. The experts tell us we should make small, realistic goals, but who actually does that? In spite of ourselves, the experts are right. So how do you make a realistic goal you can actually reach? You find something you actually enjoy that fits the description of your goal. Dairy is something that can cause many people’s resolutions to go from being mere goals to actual reality.
    For those who look to tighten their budgets after a, perhaps, disastrous December, dairy helps to fit that goal. Everyone needs to eat, and dairy is an extremely economical, nutrient packed food for people to buy thus helping them in their budget needs. As a college student, dairy is always part of my grocery run. And, if you knew what a tightwad I am that means something.
    Perhaps someone is looking to exercise more. Chocolate milk as a post-workout recovery drink is proven to help in muscle gains and weight loss. Plus, chocolate milk is something to look forward to. Is there any better way to push yourself to work hard?
    For those looking to eat healthier, dairy foods are an easy and tasty choice. Dairy has a delicious option for anyone’s taste buds. Find a product you enjoy. Plus, if weight loss is part of your goal, then dairy fits into that as well. The protein found in dairy foods helps you to feel full so you are not tempted to snack needlessly.
    I am so convinced that dairy is a vital part of people’s success that I want everyone to have access to it. As part of that goal, in December, I was invited to be a celebrity bell ringer for the Salvation Army at the Mall of America. Dairy farmers care about the health and well-being of our communities, and this was a wonderful opportunity to visit with people about the importance of contributing to their community. The Salvation Army helps those in need in many ways such as providing food and shelter.
    Everyone deserves the chance to have dairy as a part of their lives. In December, I also donated dairy foods to my local food shelf. Dairy foods are the most requested and least donated item to food shelves. Perhaps donating dairy to your local food pantry is your resolution.
    As dairy farmers, we already incorporate dairy into all aspects of our lives. You are possibly wondering what use is this article to me? You probably have a friend, neighbor or colleague who needs to hear all the great aspects of dairy. Or, maybe you know someone in need who you can help. We all stand in a special position to help others fit dairy into their life and goals. Take the opportunity to hear, help and encourage. You can make a difference. Whose life can you touch?
    Princess Kay of the Milky Way, Amy Kyllo, serves as the Minnesota dairy community’s goodwill ambassador. Throughout the year, Princess Kay helps people understand the dedication of dairy farmers to wholesome and nutritious food, and the way milk is produced. Princess Kay does many school presentations, represents dairy farmers at the Fuel Up To Play 60 events that are held in conjunction with the Minnesota Vikings, and is very active during June Dairy Month sharing the importance of dairy farming and dairy foods. Amy grew up in Byron, MN living and working on her family’s dairy farm. She is a senior at the Free Lutheran Bible College. She enjoys music, loves to read and is an avid Minnesota Twins baseball fan.