Wednesday, November 30, 2011

My Heart Will Choose To Say...

"I discovered I always have choices and sometimes it's only a choice of attitude."

You know, sometimes life is just not that much fun. I know, I know....I write all the time about having a good attitude and living life to the fullest. And don't get me wrong, I'm totally a believer in those concepts. But even when you strive to live your life that way, sometimes it's just not that much fun.

Sometimes your job might really suck. Sometimes you just don't feel like getting out of your warm bed to go running, yet want to scream every time you step on a scale. Sometimes it feels like you're getting left behind while everyone else is figuring their lives out. Sometimes your dang football team loses a game they should have won in their sleep. And by "you" in this paragraph, I obviously mean "me."

That's pretty much how I've been feeling recently. And, as He usually does, God got my attention. Last weekend in church, we sang one of my favorite worship songs, Blessed Be Your Name.

I previously fell in love with the verse talking about praising God even when there is pain in the offering and when you're on a road marked with suffering after Mr. Franklin died. At that time, that was the words that I needed to hear. But last week, because the time was right for it, I heard a different part of the song.

"My heart will choose to say blessed be Your name." Choose. I liked this for two reasons.
First, because it says that it's okay--normal, maybe--for us to not automatically feel the way we ought to. We don't automatically have a grateful heart or see the glass half full. I struggle with this. For example, College Roomie and I were talking last week about "western world" problems---like when you're upset that you hit three red lights in a row or your house cleaning lady doesn't show up on time. I always feel guilty for being annoyed by this kind of thing because I know how good I have it. So I appreciate the reminder that our hearts are not always programmed to be as grateful as they should. Instead, it's a choice that we have to make. Knowing that takes some of the guilt away.

Second, I like that it's up to me to decide how I react to my situation. It's up to me to decide if in a rough patch, I will keep a good attitude, find the positive, and praise God for all of the blessings that I have and for whatever purpose he has for me in my current situation. I have control over this. It's similar to my prior realization about having an obligation to fight for joy.

And so after hearing this song in a different way than I had before, I was left to apply it to my life and I thought, "Well dang. I'm a disaster." I sure hadn't been thinking this way lately. I wasn't thinking about consciously chosing to be happy and optimistic and grateful. Instead I had been contemplating the name of my surfboard stand. God apparently thought I needed a reminder about the choice that I should be spending my time on. And so far, it's been working. Just as well. I hadn't come up with a killer name for my surf shop yet anyway.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Father Daughter Ski Trip

"What do you first do when you learn to swim? You make mistakes, do you not? And what happens? You make other mistakes, and when you have made all the mistakes you possibly can without drowning - and some of them many times over - what do you find? That you can swim? Well - life is just the same as learning to swim! Do not be afraid of making mistakes, for there is no other way of learning how to live!" ~Alfred Adler

I headed back to my parents' the last weekend in August for one last lake trip this summer. You read abour our big Fourth of July trip previously. We were hoping to have a bunch of family be able to come in for the last trip, but in the end, it ended up just being my dad and my uncle, Cousin Whitney and I. We deemed it Father Daughter Ski Trip. Here are just a few snapshots of the day. The weather was perfect, the water was smooth, The Classic ran like a dream and it really could not have been a better day for skiing.

For those of you wondering, yes, my dad and my uncle are old. Yet they are still pretty much rockstars on skis. Snow and water, for that matter. Fingers crossed that's genetic!

We did have one little mishap involving men not using much common sense and running out of gas. For the record, I told them it was stupid from the get-go. Fortunately, as you recall from this blog, my Dad and I learned the art of paddling while white water rafting two weeks before, so he was able to paddle the vessel back to shore!
The day after......well that could have been a lot better. I was so sore I could hardly move. I seriously think I may have whiplash. Self imposed whiplash---way to go, Tiffany. Trying to learn to ski on one ski instead of two is a painful thing, turns out! And instead of realizing this and stopping, I decided to be stubborn and pig-headed and keep going. Seriously, there may have been permanent neck damage!

And so, with that, the ski boats are put up for the summer. And my neck has about 9 months to recover. But next year, be ready. We're going to get this one ski business down!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Homecoming 2011 (Part 3): Game Day in Stillwater!

"Even though we've changed and we're all finding our own place in the world, we all know that when the tears fall or the smile spreads across our face, we'll come to each other because no matter where this crazy world takes us, nothing will ever change so much to the point where we're not all still friends."

I'm going to do some catch up this week on posts that I just hadn't gotten around to, so excuse the random, unorganized nature of the next few days! You probably remember that I went to Homecoming at OSU (Part 1). Home of the whole Kyle the Medic drama (Part 2). Anyway, here we go with Part 3.

So my dear Soulmate Friend and her husband Tuba Player graciously let the Oklahoma Girls and me crash at their house on Friday night. We got to play with Little Linebacker all morning and then to top it off, Soulmate Friend whipped me up a birthday breakfast of french toast casserole with a candle to blow out and everything. She's the best.
Later that morning we headed to campus to meet up with one of my best friends from high school (and one of my favorite people in the world!) Chocolate Brown and his lovely wife. Chocolate Brown is going to law school in Oklahoma, so for their college graduation last May, I told them I'd take them to an OSU game. What better than homecoming? I was SO excited to see these two!

So we did a quick campus tour---the orange fountain, student union, Library Lawn, The Strip, you name it.
Then it was time for us to help with the tailgate patrol. Loud Oklahoma Girl's company sponsors this, so the five of us loaded up in a golf cart decorated like an Escalade to go cruise around the tailgates. It was pretty awesome.
And then, it was game time! There is nothing like over 75,000 OSU fans in a sea of orange screaming their heads off. I mean, it's just awesome! Here are some shots from the game (which we completely dominated by the way, much to the chagrin of Cousin Swiss Mister!)
So after the massacre was over (GO POKES!!), we said goodbye to Mr. and Mrs. Chocolate Brown and they gave me flowers, candy and an OSU shirt for my birthday. Pretty sure those are three of my favorite thinbgs in the world! Then the Oklahoma Girls and I headed back to Tulsa where we rocked out our awesome Halloween costumes....check it.....
Rock paper scissors. And because Blonde Oklahoma Girl was in charge, that meant glitter everywhere! LOVED it!

I could not have had a better time on Homecoming weekend with my amazing friends. I love that friends from different periods in my life can all meet up and have a blast together. I have excellent taste if I do say so myself!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Blessed Beyond Belief

“Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving.” W. T. Purkiser

Happy Thanksgiving to all! Take time to be thankful for the abundant blessings we have been given! And to eat a lot. And take a nap. :)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Letters to Mr. Right: Letter #8

"Highways and broken hearts, late nights and old guitars, wondering where you are, you're so far away..." ~Eli Young Band

Dear Mr. Right,

Sometimes I wonder about the girls you're dating now.

I hope that they are good to you, and that you are good to them. But not too good, because I can't take that kind of pressure. I hope that they teach you to understand the difference between "fine" which means "okay" and "fine" which means "don't you dare even think about it." I hope that they aren't too domestic or crafty, or if they are, I hope you think that's annoying. I hope that at least one of them breaks your heart--so you know how that feels and you will be careful not to ever do it to me. I hope that you have this feeling that something is missing....something that you won't find in any of these other girls, but will appear when you find me.

Photo via

Oh yea, and I hope you break up with them really, really soon. No, that's not true. Well...maybe it's kinda (totally) true.

Waiting for that day,


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Hey, It's Okay #2 and Photos of the Week: Week 46

"When the world doesn't make no sense and you're feeling just a little too tense, gotta loosen up your chains and dance!" ~Dixie Chicks

I'm just not feeling super philosophical today, so instead of anything important, we're doing confessions and photos. Here we go!

Photos of the Week

Theme: Orange (Project 64)
I realize that lately this blog has been all OSU all the time what with my reaction on Saturday to the announcment that there would be protesters at the memorial service for our coaches (by the way, one man prevented the story here), and my thoughts yesterday on my love for OSU, but you had to know that when orange was the color of the week, there would be a football-related picture coming your way. I love this shot in black and white with just a splash of orange in the center. Check out the other entries at Project 64.

Theme: Giving Thanks (Quotography)
I've always loved this quote and thought it fit perfectly with this theme. Be sure to check out the other entries at My Perspective!

Theme: Music
I'm totally not a musical instrument person. Once, College Roomie and I called our dorm neighbor "Trumpet Boy" for months before learning that the horn he carried around was a saxaphone. Oops. But I love me a tuba, mostly becuase of SoulMate Friend's husband, Tuba Man, who I used to go watch play in the Stillwater Community Band. So when I saw the tubas playing at Homecoming Walkaround, I had to snap a shot.

Hey, it's okay....

(To see the other entries, visit Brunch with Amber. To see my prior "It's Okay" post, click here).

Its Ok Thursdays

1) ...that I'm not doing this on Thursday. Tuesday, Thursday, potato, potaaato. It's my blog.

2) seriously feel like this little picture was drawn about me. No lie, I had 4 (count them...FOUR) facebook friends get engaged last weekend. Three are younger than I am. Of course all of MY friends are beautiful and I'm happy for them, but seriously, some other people getting engaged make me feel just like the girl in the picture. Which leads me to my second wedding-related confession for the day.

3) watch Say Yes to the Dress and more often think "who is the world wants to marry a girl who acts like that" or "how is she engaged and on tv and I'm sitting on my couch in my sweats" rather than "what a lovely mermaid dress she is trying on." Whatev. And by whatev I mean "universe please don't curse me and never send Mr. Right!"

4) at least once a week think about quitting my job, selling my house, and becoming a beach bum who makes money selling surfboards. (As you might remember from this blog, this really just means its time for a trip.) And it's okay to not know anything about said surfboards.

5) be a little offended that Cousin Swiss Mister is skipping out on family Thanksgiving on Saturday because he didn't have enough time even though he did have enough time to spend a romantic weekend in New York with some girl. Who graduated from OU. Salt.In.Wound. I already don't like her. Oh well, certainly not the first time! :)

6) have totally forgotten to post my blog all about game day at Homecoming. Particularly given that it was SUCH a fantastic day with fantastic people. Who are super beautiful/handsome and will make you jealous when you see the picutres. Never fear, I'll get that up on Friday!

7) secretly look for Kyle the Medic when they show the sideline at an OSU game. No sighting yet. He's probably off marrying his girlfriend. Please refer back to confession #2 for my thoughts on that. And to the photo below.

Monday, November 21, 2011

We Are Orange

"Orange is Kurt Budke, Miranda Serna, Barry Sanders, Garth Brooks, Mike Gundy, Eddie's you and me." ~OSU Poem via Blonde Oklahoma Girl

Last week someone told me that anytime they heard anything about Oklahoma State University, she thought of me. I couldn't have been more proud. I love everything about OSU.

I love OSU when things are good. Like when our basketball team played in the Final Four. When I got to walk through the end zone in my cap and gown. Like last Thursday when our football team was 10-0 and we were applying for National Championship tickets. When it's a beautiful fall day on campus and the fountain is dyed orange.

And I love OSU when things are bad. When I can't fill in "OSU" on a March Madness bracket. When we had to pile into the Student Union basement for tornado warnings. When we lose our first game of the season and potentially the chance at a trip to New Orleans. And when tragic plane crashes take away members of the OSU family.
If you're a sports fan, you know that my Pokes were upset last Friday. We lost in double overtime to Iowa State, which may have ended our dream of playing in the National Championship. And it really sucked. And coming from a football fan like me, I know this is shocking, but I sure wish that had been the worst thing that happened last week.

You have probably also heard about the plane crash last Thursday in which OSU lost our women's basketball coach, Kurt Bundke, assistant coach (a New Mexico girl like me), Miranda Serna, and two pilots. They leave behind families, friends, kids, a basketball team, and an orange-clad family of thousands. Please keep these people in your prayers as they try and find some way to put their lives back together. I don't think anyone who heard the news could help but think back to that moment 10 years ago when another plane crash broke the hearts of the Pokes.
Then, we lost 10. Thursday night we lost 4. And Friday night we lost a football game. Sure puts things in perspective about the latter.

Yes, on Friday night those boys dreams were crushed. Along with those of everyone wearing orange. A Heisman was almost certainly lost. The chance of kissing the crystal National Championship trophy seemed to have slipped away. But they were able to walk off an airplane and sing the alma mater at the airport. And go home and hug their families. That's more important than the W any day.

If there is one thing I know about Oklahoma State in a tragedy, it's that we will never forget. We've said it and lived it for the last 10 years. In a field in Colorado. On a banner hanging from the rafters. At a statute outside Gallagher Iba Arena. In homecoming decorations marking the 10 year anniversary of the first crash. So today, I'm wearing orange. Because I love OSU. Win or lose. Happy or sad. Because I'm proud of the way we've pulled together in times of disappointment, in times of tragedy, and even in times of being targeted by terrible, crazy funeral protesters. Because I'm proud to be a Cowboy. Because we'll never forget. And because we are...Orange.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Proud To Be A Cowboy

"Ever you'll find us, loyal and true, to our alma mater, O. S. U.!" ~Oklahoma State Alma Mater

I know that I don't usally blog on Saturdays. And I've got a full blog coming on Monday about what people are calling the worst day in OSU history. In the mean time, I just have to say this.

It has been announced that the Westboro Baptist Church, that group of people who routinely protest at funeral of fallen U.S. soldiers, will be in Stillwater on Monday morning, protesting the memorial service for Coach Budke and Coach Serna. Their rationale behind this is ridiculous and repulsive.

I believe in freedom of speech. But I also believe in respecting and honoring the dead and the grieving. And in a God who would never condone the actions of these people.

Finally, I believe in Oklahoma State. The students and community are already planning to come out in droves, in a sea of orange. In doing so, they will show their support for the coaches' families. They will show their love for OSU. And they will show that nothing....not plane crashes, not upset losses, and certainly not jackasses from this so-called church will be able to quiet our spirit. I've never been more proud to be a Cowboy.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Ask Little Cowboy #2: Relationship Advice

"One of you should know how to write a check. Because, even if you have tons of love, there is still going to be a lot of bills." -- Ava, age 8 when asked about love

Happy Friday to ya! I know that you're excited for our new "Ask Little Cowboy" blog. In case you missed, it, Little Cowboy is my soon-to-be nephew. After his wildly popular Meet the Cast Monday blog, he came back by popular demand with his first Ask Little Cowboy Blog. We're back today with take 2.
If you have question for Little Cowboy....on any topic, he's ready for it all politics, religion, horses, nap time, you get it.....just leave a comment below!

And's Little Cowboy and his relationship advice

How do people know when they’re in love? It means they like can't live without the other one and that's weird. {That is weird. Good call!}

Where should a girl look to find a boyfriend? Um in Fort Sumner cause that's where I found McKayla. {This is breaking news. You might remember last time that Little Cowboy was really upset because all of his "dang girlfriends" were getting married. Luckily, he has found a new girlfriend--a high school senior named McKayla from a town called Ft. Sumner.}

What happens when you kiss a girl? Your tongue falls off!!! (Unless it's your Moomoos {what he calls his mom} or your Mimi {his grandma}....) {I had to ask this because one of the first times I met him, Little Brother said, "Little Cowboy, what happens when you kiss a girl?" Little Cowboy said, "Tongue and ears" and went on to explain that Little Brother and PT taught him that if he kissed a girl, his tongue and ears would fall off.}

What do boys look for in a girlfriend? Food! {Ha! No wonder I'm single!}

When should people get married? When they're big enough to. And when they can but the boy has to get the girl a ring first. {Aunt Tiff will work on this.....I think that he's old enough to know that you have to have a job first. Like this little girl in my favorite video ever.}

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Letters to Mr. Right: Letter #7

Dear Mr. Right,

I really hope that you are a country boy. Or at the very least that you fall in love with the country when you fall in love with me.

Photo via Blonde Oklahoma Girl's pinterest.

That you appreciate dirt roads and open spaces. That you learn the importance of neighbors, who become like family. That you want to sit on the front porch or the back of a tailgate and watch the sunset. And that you'll love the smell of fresh cut hay. That you know how to count cows and set irrigation tubes. That you don't mind waiting to have the tree on Christmas morning until after chores are done. And that you'll enjoy talking about different rams and looking through bull semen catalogs. Because I think that you'll quickly realize...the country, the land, the animals, the stories....those are a really big part of me.

And hopefully they'll be a big part of you too.

Waiting for that day,


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Photos of the Week: Week 45

Well since I didn't get my photos posted over the weekend, we're having Photos of the Week today. But for those of you who can't go a day without reading my rantings, you can check out a guest post I did last week on one of my favorite bloggers, Courtney at Vintch! Just click here. And trust me, add Courtney's blog to your list of ones to read every day...she's awesome! And now, on to photos.

Theme: Wind

I got this shot at home this weekend. It's a photo of one of our windmills through a cottonwood tree that's a perfect shade of bright yellow. And by the way, the wind was blowing like 50 miles an hour that day, causing a tree to blow over onto the road. No lie, we had to move it with the tractor.

Theme: Black and White Photo (Quotography)

This is one of my favorite black and white photos that I've taken. I shot this at the church with the miracle staircase, the Loretto Chapel. I found this quote and just loved it. Check out all the other entries at My Perspective!

Theme: Show Off Your Shot
I sort of fell in love with this picture. Last week I spoke at a water industry conference in Austin, Texas. It was at a beautiful resort (Lost Pine) and I took a little jog along the bank of the Colorado River at dusk. It was just a beautiful day and a beautiful location. Check out the other entries at "And Then She Snapped."

Theme: Purple Mountain Majesty (Project 64)
I jumped back a bit to find this picture. Remember the Steeplechase from last Spring? Well I had snapped this picture and figured that I could use it for a Project 64 color....and now I can! Such a bright shade of purple--I just love it! See the other entries at Project 64.

Theme: Clear as Glass
This is another shot that I took on the river in Austin. I just loved the reflection of the colored leaves on the water. No wind and the bright sun made for clear water!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Thoughts on the Penn State Scandal

“Believe deep down in your heart that you're destined to do great things.” ~Joe Paterno

A couple people asked me if I would be blogging about the terrible situation going on with Penn State football. Originally, I said no. But y'all know I have a big mouth and lots of opinions. And I decided that because several of these issues are important to me, I would write this blog. I realize that this is a controversial topic and if you don't agree with me, that's fine. This is just my perspective on a terrible situation. But I think that you'll see it is a little bit of an interesting one, that includes understanding both sides of the issue.

First, innocent children who are victims of abuse break my heart. I watched a very dear friend go through this situation and because of that, I sympathize with any kids who are abused in any manner. Such a horrific situation for them to go through. My heart and my prayers go out to each of them and to their families.

Second, (here's where I fear I may get unpopular) I think it's very important for us to remember the principle upon which our justice system is based: Innocent until proven guilty. Sadly, I've had a close friend go trough being wrongly accused of a crime, and that situation was terrifying and eye opening and has made this a major soapbox of mine (as you've read about before.)

Inocent until proven guilty. In the chaos that occurred last week in State College and the swarm of media coverage surrounding it, I never heard this idea mentioned one time. And I have to tell you, this is one of my biggest fears about our justice system...the idea that a person can be convicted in public opinion before he ever sets foot in a courtroom. Don't misunderstand me--if he did these dispicable acts, and the prosecution proves that beyond a reasonable doubt, I firmly believe that he should pay for his crimes and serve his time. But I only get to that point after he has been proven guilty. I think this is a critically important, yet almost completely overlooked part of this story.

Third, I love Joe Paterno. I have had the following football guidelines for years: Unless they are playing each other, I never cheer against my OSU Cowboys, Notre Dame, any service academy (i.e. Army, Navy), and I never cheer against Joe Pa. Put another way, you are always for OSU, God, Country and Joe Pa.

I think that if you want to look at a man who gave himself to his players, a football program, and a university, he is Exhibit A. Should he have done more than report to his higher ups when the alleged abuse was reported to him? Yes. He admitted as much himself. And I think that the odds are that this situation will probably increase reporting of abuse, which is probably a silver lining in a cloud of darkness.

But I think that one mistake (as serious as it was) should not be allowed to ruin a legacy of such magnitude. It should not overshadow the countless lives changed, people inspired, and lessons taught. I think that we would do well to ask ourselves a question: "How would you like to be remembered by your worst moment?" I know I wouldn't. And I don't believe that Joe Pa deserves to. And I for one refuse to remember him that way and overlook the amazing legacy that he created at Penn State.

Finally, even in the midst of scandal, I still love college football. On Saturday, it brought people together. Students and fans wore blue ribbons to support child abuse victims. Signs professiong love and appreciation for Joe Pa were everywhere. Football served as a distraction for a community that was hurting. And before the game started, all of the players gathered at the 50 yard line for a moment of prayer. And when I say all of the players, I mean all of the players and coaches and staffs from both teams. Red and blue jerseys jumbled together, holding hands, asking for peace and comfort and healing. If you ask me, that's bigger than football, and that's the kind of thing that college football is really about.

Photos courtesy AP.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Meet the Cast Monday #38: Animal House Boys (Part II)

And today we're here with Part II of meeting the Animal House Boys. If you missed Part 1, click here to learn about the AHBs in general and to meet Mr. AHB and Pig Farmer.

We'll kick things off today with Trailerpark Bryan. Unlike the other Animal House Boys, this is not a blog-only nickname. No sir, that's what I call him in real life. You see, we met Trailerpark Bryan when Pig Farmer and NM Animal House Boy lived at Donkey Farm.....a nasty old trailer in a trailerpark. Trailerpark Bryan was their neighbor. The name stuck and never went away. He's now a veterinarian and he's seriously one of the kindest, funniest, handiest people you'll ever meet. I didn't worry about fixing anything the whole time I was at OSU. I just called Trailerpark Bryan!
What is your favorite college memory? House parties. {Anyone sensing a theme here?}

What is your favorite memory involving me? Me and Pig Farmer riding in the back of the car going to the strip singing Johnny Cash. {Okay, our senior year those boys watched Walk The Line literally twice a day. No lie. And graduation weekend on the way to the Penny, they started singing the "I've got Arms, You've got Arms" duet to each other in the back seat of my car. It was awesome.}

Best advice you were ever given? Do it, you only live once! {Amen!}

Next up we have the Governor. He earned his name by saying all through college that he wanted to run for governor of Oklahoma. He now says he's over that and enjoys his lobbying job, but I'm still exepcting to visit him in the Governor's Mansion one day. He and his adorable wife were the first of the group to have a baby....Little Princess was born back in 2010.

What is your favorite college memory? Winning 2005 Livestock Judging College National Championship. {Not sure this has been mentioned yet, but all of them with the exception of Trailerpark Bryan were on the judging team that won--with a record setting score--Louisville.}

What is your favorite memory involving me? When you wrote our ag comm paper and how you and my wife and College Roomie had out house decorated when we got home from Louisville. {The ag comm paper...I should probably just plead the 5th and go on, but trust me, it's a great story.}

Best advice you were ever given? Don't burn any bridges and try not to make enemies. {Politician? I think so.}

What is one (or more) item(s)on your bucket list? Go to the Masters golf tournament.

And we'll wrap up the day with the NM Animal House Boy. He and I go way back to about the 8th grade where we were judging against each other in FFA. So he was the link that got me in with the rest of these crazies. He's one of my best friends in the world and I just can't say enough good things about him. He and his wife live in a town that is the definition of the middle of nowhere and just had a baby boy within the last month.

What is your favorite college memory?

I think it is a shame how many of my favorite college memories I do not remember! Some of the funnest times happened in that wonderful college hangout....IHOP. {You've read about this before on my blog.} What we would have done without that place I don't know (Probably sleep!). I remember going there with the Logan crew after Calf Fry when I announced to the entire restaurant on the microphone that Daryl Worley was at IHOP and then we built a tower out of the condiments. When I started talking on the microphone they sure got us a table fast. {He doesn't remember this exactly right. Actually, when he got on the microphone, they KICKED US OUT of the restaurant fast. We had to sneak back in and were never actually seated, we just stole a table that they just bussed and sat down before anyone saw us or asked questions.}

I also remember [two Animal House Boys who shall go un-named for obvious reasons] peeing on each others legs in the bathroom and being embarresed to tell everyone. Of course it started because one was just trying to pee in the drain because the urinals were being used. {I thought this was a code of secrecy, never tell kind of story, but hey, if he typed it, I'm leaving it! I did take the names're welcome boys! This ended with them coming back out of the bathroom, acting strange, and some random guy walking out after then and both of the boys screaming, "You saw NOTHING!"}

I am glad Woody (security gaurd) never shot Mr. Animal House Boy...though I don't think he had a gun which is good because some college student (possiblly one of us) probably would have tryed to take it away to look at it. {I totally forgot about have I not blogged about Woody! Toward the end of our senior year, IHOP got a security guard. I wonder why.... Anyway, he was probably 70 years old and I later learned his name was Wally, but we called him Woody. Mr. Animal House Boy always asked him how he got his shirts so stiff. It really is a miracle he didn't get shot.}

What is your favorite memory involving me? I really like the memory of you coming to pick us up on some tuesday night when Mr. Animal House Boy and I swore we were going to go have a few beers (early), play a little pool, go home early get some sleep, and go to class the next day. {Mind you, early meant 5:00 pm. And on a Tuesday.} Funny how that always resulted in a free ride home from Tiffany at 2 in the morning. I am glad you can drive well with your eyes covered from the backseat or with somone with a rug mark on his forehead is ready to kill someone! {Two stories here. First, NM Animal House Boy thought it was hilarious to sit in the back seat and cover my eyes and yell "Guess who!?!" while I was driving. Not once.....EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. Second, he got the rug burn on his forehead after a wrestling match with Mr. Animal House Boy. Mr. AHB tackled NM AHB and drove his head into the ground, leaving a huge rug burn. So NM Animal House Boy choked Mr. Animal House Boy until he passed out. They're still like best friends.}

Tell us one thing you did to throw the best house parties.

Unlike Mr. Animal House Boy our best parties were well planned...up to the point of Pig Farmer drawing a map on the chalk board in the animal science lab we were teaching to invite everyone to come. This makes me think of another college memory. I have no idea how a floor could get that dirty. Our Kitchen floor would literally have an inch of muck and mad on it the day after a house party. {This one is on Trailerpark Bryan who always thought he needed eggs at 2:00 in the morning.}

Give us a piece of relationship advice. Someone in a relationship always has the HAND. If neither person has the HAND that is the person to marry. {He preached this non-stop in college. I can't tell you how many relationships we had to analzye for hand.}

And now you guys have met five of my best friends and favorite people in the world. Thanks, boys, for making my life so much more fun!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Christmas Card Selection

Okay folks….it’s that time of year again…..time to pick out my yearly Christmas card!

Just like last year, I’ll be going the Shutterfly route to find the perfect card.

In case you’re new to my blog in 2011, here is what my card turned out like last year:

I started looking through some of their holiday cards and their Christmas cards and I love so many of them, I’m not sure how I’m going to choose! I definitely want a card with lots of photo ops. I was fortunate to get to do lots of fun things this year, and I feel like my Christmas card is the perfect opportunity to create a fun little collection of my year. I save my card for each year and I think it will be a lot of fun in 20 years to look back on my collection.

None of you will be surprised to know that I always choose a card with at least 4 or more photos. I love pictures and it’s so hard to choose just one.

Lucky for me, I’ve got lots of great options! Here are a few of my favorites:

Counting Our Blessings

Pictures Everywhere

Highlights of 2011

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Friday, November 11, 2011

Family Farm Friday #66: So God Made A Farmer

"If you take the cowboy out of society you are going to lose people with integrity and honor and heart and love for country. You're going to lose the best of America." CJ Hadley, Range Magazine

I tell y'all.....I loved Paul Harvey growing up. My Gran listened to him every single day at 11:50 in the morning on AM radio. And that man was full of great stories and wisdom every day. But I have come across what I'm convinced is his very best piece.

If you want to listen to it in Paul's voice (trust me, you do), just click here.

So God Made A Farmer

And on the 8th day God looked down on his planned paradise and said, "I need a caretaker!" So, God made a farmer!
God said I need somebody to get up before dawn and milk cows and work all day in the fields, milk cows again, eat supper and then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board. So, God made a farmer!
I need somebody with strong arms. Strong enough to rustle a calf, yet gentle enough to deliver his own grandchild. Somebody to call hogs, tame cantankerous machinery, come home hungry and have to wait for lunch until his wife is done feeding and visiting with the ladies and telling them to be sure to come back real soon...and mean it. So, God made a farmer! God said "I need somebody that can shape an ax handle, shoe a horse with a hunk of car tire make a harness out of hay wire, feed sacks and shoe scraps. And...who, at planting time and harvest season, will finish his forty hour week by Tuesday noon. Then, pain'n from "tractor back", put in another seventy two hours. So, God made a farmer!

God had to have somebody willing to ride the ruts at double speed to get the hay in ahead of the rain clouds and yet stop on mid-field and race to help when he sees the first smoke from a neighbor's place. So, God made a farmer!
God said, "I need somebody strong enough to clear trees, heave bails and yet gentle enough to tame lambs and wean pigs and tend the pink combed pullets...and who will stop his mower for an hour to mend the broken leg of a meadow lark. So, God made a farmer!

It had to be somebody who'd plow deep and straight...and not cut corners. Somebody to seed and weed, feed and breed...and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk. Somebody to replenish the self feeder and then finish a hard days work with a five mile drive to church. So, God made a farmer!
Somebody who'd bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who'd laugh and then sigh...and then respond with smiling eyes, when his son says he wants to spend his life "doing what dad does." So, God made a farmer!

I'm not sure truer words have ever been spoken. Sure makes me proud to be a farm kid.

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