Weekly Photo Challenge ~ SUNSET


Wow, it’s Friday again? Already?! This week’s photo theme from The Daily Post is SUNSET.

Again, I tried not to be so obvious with my interpretation with this week’s theme. This is a photo – on of my all-time favorites – from an evening at the roping arena when the sun was just beginning to set over the horizon. I think this handsome lil’ fella was enjoying the cool breeze and nice view of the action. It helped that he was curious and photogenic for the goofy photographer woman-with-a-camera! 

Enjoy. Plus, you can share your own photos at The Daily Post too. I hope you will comment and share your own submission link(s) too!

Happy Friday and enjoy your weekend, Y’all!

 

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Mr. & Mrs. Steele


In a small country church,

 

a bride and groom promised to love and cherish one another all the days of their lives.

 

Then, the bride sang and said he was her destiny, more than she could have ever dreamed.

 

It’s official with the kiss!

 

The preacher finally shouted, “I’m proud to present for the very first time, Mr. and Mrs. Steele!”

 

The newlyweds danced as husband and wife.

The bride danced with her father…

…then the music changed and they cut-a-rug!!!!!!!!!!!

 

This is the happiest mother-of-the-bride I’ve ever seen…

 

And finally I say,

 

I love you both so much and I’m grateful to call you family. Have a wonderful honeymoon and remember what I told you!

 

Love,
Me

FALL … not your typical autumn scene


The Daily Post is at it again … this week’s Photo Challenge theme is FALL and I am super-excited to share a few photos I took this morning while “working” (very loose term, please understand!) at Tapp Farms, Inc.

I was graciously allowed by Kaleb (who you’ll see below) to ride with him on several runs from the farm to the grain elevators in Henderson – about a 25 minute ride each way. I’ve ridden in the tractor-trailer trucks with him before but to an elevator here in Sebree, about 10 minutes from the farm, but today’s route allowed us to catch-up on life and plenty of photo-ops for Wannabe Photographer here. Kaleb asked me several times if I knew what I was doing, as if he really had to ask. Of course I said no!

Anyway, I’m working on another super-duper-extra-special post so I need to make this quick. I hope you enjoy these FALL photos, they’re outside the box and not the ordinary autumn scene. They are, however, fall in ever sense of the word for farmers near and far as they race against the clock (and mother nature)(and commodity prices)(and each other) to get the crops out of the fields, into the storage tanks, and onto the grain companies where they are sold by the truckload.

My morning started extra early. I was actually already dressed and ready to leave when I took this picture of the clock on my phone. Kaleb arrived a few minutes later and off we went!

Overhead view of the storage tanks located at Tapp Farms, just outside of Sebree. There are multiple tanks and don’t ask me how much “stuff” they hold, I don’t know …. didn’t think to ask that question.

Here’s another view of the storage tanks and drive-thru where trailers are loaded from the bin above. This sophisticated set of machinery allows The Tapp’s to store and dry their crops to a preferred moisture content (12% is highly desireable, we were carrying 15.5% today) and then transported to a grain company and sold at market value. Farmers without storage facilities on their own property must transport crops directly from the field and yield a much lower profit because the grain company “dries” the product for them.

One of the trailer loads Kaleb sold today was deposited directly onto a barge on the Ohio River. There’s no telling where the product will go from there.

This was my first “chariot” of the morning … a bright red Sterling!

My handsome chaffeur, Kaleb. He and his brother, Kelby, are the brothers I never had. I love them dearly.

Sorry ladies, he’s not available. While Kaleb and I were taking grain to Henderson, his beautiful wife (Heather) was dressing their cutie-patootie daughter (Adalee Mae) (don’t you just love her name?!) for a baby pagaent at Clay Days, a local fall festival and community event. I still haven’t heard if Adalee brought the crown and title home or not …. but she gets my vote regardless!

Here we are pulling onto the scales to weigh the truck and trailer. Each truck must be weighed upon entry and again before exiting to measure the amount of product deposited into the storage tanks.

You think the ladies inside the scale house figured out how much I weigh? Lawd, I sure hope not!

Later in the morning, Kaleb said we were changing trucks. I didn’t ask why – wouldn’t have mattered anyway! I followed him into this white Peterbilt with camera bag in hand. I have to say though, the suspension was MUCH smoother in the red truck. But the Peterbilt sounded better on the highway.

HAHAHA I’m such a country girl!

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is pure money. This is what FALL is all about for farmers …. selling good product at market when prices are high. It doesn’t get anymore FALL than this. Forget the lottery, farming is real gambling.

I hope you enjoyed my interpretation of FALL for The Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge. Be sure to check out the other participants’ blogs as well.

Tuesday Truths ~ Facts of Me


I’m not stealing this concept list from the Pirate’s Daughter ….. I’m borrowing it permanently. Actually, the Pirate’s Daughter borrowed it from Mariejose, another bloggin’ sistah. I love them both, I’m sure they don’t mind.

 

It’s Tuesday. Time for ‘nother round of truths:

{a} age   27 … I honestly don’t comprehend the fact I’m approaching The Big 3-0. Some days I think I should still be in elementary school and other days I think I’m still in college. I don’t want to grow up.
{b} bed size  King
{c} chore you hate  Laundry and cleaning the house. But now that I’ve been stung by a scorpion, I’ve used the vacuum three times in two days.
{d} dogs No, unfortunately not … I sure wish I had a couple.
{e} essential start to your day  a trip to the bathroom to 1) use the toilet, 2) wash my face, and 3) brush my teeth. In that order. No exceptions.
{f} favorite color  anything bright and refreshing, I wear a lot of pink, purple, aqua, yellow, and green
{g} gold or silver  Why is platinum not an option? I guess gold but I’m allergic to the nickel plating in white gold.
{h} height  5-12 … Really, I’m 5-foot-12-inches.
{i} instruments you play  I used to play the flute but then I saw the “costumes” the high school band members had to wear and I left that profession as quickly as possible. No offense to the band people. Just not my thang.

Pirate's Daughter says Husband is "hunky". I agree.

{j} job title  Hunky Husband’s Wife. Sometimes I’m a substitute teacher. Other times I’m a stay-at-home housewife. I’m permanently a child of God. Oh, and I’m coordinating a book club some friends and I recently created. They think I’m uber-organized. HA!
{k} kids  I’m glad this subject came up because up until yesterday morning, I was quite concerned with my birth control pills. The five pill packs I have in possession are included in the national RECALL. Fortunately, the Help Line Lady was swift to assure me ~ after further investigations ~ that the five pill packs I have in my possession are A-OK. So, to answer the question: No, Hunky Husband and I have no children. It is our intent to keep it that way, at least for the foreseeable future. But, Hunky Husband and I will continue the Hanky Panky.
{l} live  in a house with Hunky Husband and an occassional scorpion … aka Spawn of Satan. ‘Nuff said.
{m} maiden name  Edwards …. funny story – Two weeks ago I received my first Jury Summons. I was so nervous that I filled out the required form and wrote my ENTIRE name. No, I’m talking my first, middle, maiden, and married names. The fact that I messed up this required form made me even more nervous, so if Uncle Sam and the Deputy Sheriff come looking for me, you’ll know why. Government officials scare the Bee-Jesus out of me.
{n} nicknames  5-12 or Polly Freakin’ Anna
{o} overnight hospital stays  Several. I’ll spare the details.
{p} pet peeve  Isn’t it obvious? Laundry and scorpions. Oh, and I don’t want the food to touch on my plate.
{q} quote  “To whom much is given, much is required.” – Luke 12:48
{r} righty or lefty  Righty. ‘cuz I’m cool like that.
{s} siblings  Nope, I’m an only child. And spoiled rotten. But I swear – pinky swear! – I’m the good kind of spoil. I swear!
{t} time you wake up  It depends on the orders of the day. I’m usually up when Hunky Husband leaves for work during the week, unless I’m subbing. We sleep in most Saturdays and I’m up early every Sunday for church and Sunday school.
{u} university attended  Oh, this will be fun. I attended Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky my freshman year, moved to Beaumont, Texas to attend Lamar University, and finally transferred to Texas A&M University – Commerce where I graduated two years later. I actually completed my college education in four years, I was so impressed with myself!
{v} vegetables you dislike  Brussel Sprouts. Eggplant. Turnips.
{w} what makes you run late  My hunky husband. I’d rather be a half-hour early than five minutes late.
{x} x-rays you’ve had  At the dentist office twice a year, a finger in elementary school (not broken), and several on the knees.
{y} yummy food  I can’t choose just one. I love to eat. I love to cook. I love food! Please, don’t make me choose.
{z} zoo animal :: Elephants.

There you have it. An alphabet’s worth of Tuesday Truths from Yours Truly.

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway currently underway, click HERE to visit the post and enter. Multiple entries are allowed and the contest ends September 23.

Peace, love, and truths,

A Touch of Sun


I Heart Faces has posted another weekly theme and I’m glad to participate and be a part of this community of photographers. I don’t consider myself a photographer, I’m not that talented. I’m continuously amazed by (and envious of) the wonderful photographs submitted week after week. I’m nowhere near the caliber of most participants, but I’m not giving up.

This week’s theme is A Touch of Sun. The photo below was taken with my Nikon D5000 the day it arrived on my doorstep. I literally opened the box, attached a lens, and drove to the roping pen (in that order!) to watch Husband do his thing. Fortunately, the sun was hovering above a line of trees and provided a golden glow amongst the cattle, horses, ropers, and spectactors. I ~ surprisingly ~ captured a few decent shots.

Husband gave me permission and authorization to use this photo. But it wasn’t an easy task. I asked, he said no. I begged. He gave in. Success!

 

 

Husband’s expression doesn’t change much when he’s roping, he looks angry all the time …. don’t be skeered, he’s harmless.

 

Thanks for viewing my weekly IHF submittal, be sure to check out their other photography posts.

 

And, while you’re here, hop on over to the  CURRENT GIVEAWAY post for a set of custom die-cut cards provided by UPrinting.com.

Contest ends September 23.

Please leave giveaway entry comments on the giveaway post, it makes life so much easier for all involved. Oh, and multiple entries are allowed on this one ….. good luck!

 

Peace, love, and sunshine,

UPrinting.com Giveaway!!!!!!!


Congratulations, Brianna D., you’re the winner of the die-dut printing services provided by UPrinting.com. Please check your email ASAP!

Thanks to everyone that entered, more giveaways are being organized so please stay tuned.

 

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

 

You know the saying, we’ve all heard it:

Ask and you shall receive.

Since 2007, I’ve had professional business cards or personal contact cards. I especially love them for substitute teaching because they are easily accessible for teachers and school administrators. You’d be surprised at the number of substitute assignments I’ve gotten while shopping at the grocery store or getting stamps at the local post office! Unfortunately, the cards I currently have do not contain the most up-to-date information regarding my teaching certificate endorsements from the State of Texas.

In my quest for an online printing company, I was introduced to UPrinting.com from other blogs offering giveaways. I’m a pretty straightforward person so I thought I’d give the ol’ ASK AND YOU SHALL RECEIVE technique a try ….. they said yes.

Goodbye boring business cards!!!!!

UPrinting.com is partnering with 27 & Counting to offer ONE lucky winner a set of die-cut business cards – a $40 value! 

The winner will receive business card printing with the following options:

  • choose from 2 x 3.5″ rounded corners; 2×2″ rounded corners; 1.75×3.5″ rounded corners; 2×3.5″ leaf; 2×3.5″ rounded one corner; 2×3.5″ half circle side; 2×3.5″ oval, or 2.5″ circle
  • 14-point cardstock in gloss, matte, high gloss (UV) or 13-point cardstock un-coated
  • 6 Business Days Turnaround with FREE SHIPPING
  • see ideas for your custom business cards

To enter, follow these simple steps:

Required Entry #1: Leave a comment on this blog post explaining how you plan to use these awesome cards

Optional Entry #2: “Like” Uprinting.com on Facebook

Optional Entry #3: “Follow” @Uprinting on Twitter

Optional Entry #4: “Like” 27 & Counting on Facebook

Optional Entry #5: “Follow” @nmhutch on Twitter

Optional Entry #6: Post this giveaway on your Facebook wall

Optional Entry #7: Re-tweet this giveaway on Twitter

Optional Entry #8: Blog about this giveaway

*****You must leave a comment for EACH entry.*****

This giveaway ends at 11:59 PM on Friday, September 23, 2011. Participants are allowed a maximum of eight (8) entries. The winner will be chosen by Random. org and notified Saturday.

RESTRICTIONS ……. this giveaway is open to U.S. residents 18 years old and above only. The winner of this giveaway cannot have won the same business card giveaway within six months, if this occurs a new winner will be selected.

UPrinting.com offers a variety of online printing services, including business cards and custom die-cut cards!

Disclaimer: Required as per FTC Ruling, this giveaway is sponsored by UPrinting, no monetary compensation was given for hosting. For more information about online printing please visit UPrinting.com.

Peace, love, and business cards,

How was your week?


(deep breath)

Can I get an amen that it’s Friday?

AMEN!!!!!!

Do you feel better?

 

This week started fine, nothing exciting, but things quickly changed Wednesday morning. There’s not an easy way to say this, so I’ll just say it:

I was stung by a scorpion.

There, I said it. It still gives me the heebie-geebies. It hurt like heck. I cried like a baby. I think scorpions are the Spawn of Satan. They are mini-monsters. They creep me out. I’m on the hunt. I will get them before they get me.

OK, please stop talking about scorptons.

In some humorous fashion, a few hours after Husband calmed me down and assured me that I would not die from this scorpion sting, he found the source of the suspected (and confirmed) water leak. Only when he started removing dirt, the “geyser” got larger. And larger. AND LARGER!

This is the hole in our yard, be careful – you might land in China.

 

While watching the local and national news tonight, I was informed that the brand of birth control pills I use are currently under recall because of mistaken packaging. Seriously, people, I can’t make this stuff up!

If you take any brand of birth control pills, please check this comprehensive list of recalled product labels and if you don’t want a Lil’ Peanut running around, use an alternate form of birth control.

RECALLED BIRTH CONTROL NOTICE

 

I’m looking forward to tomorrow as I’m providing lunch for several women interested in creating a book club. I’ll be sure to take lots of pictures and let you know about our book club. Plus, I’m making lots of yummy and delicious food for my friends.

On the menu:

  • Crab Ragoon
  • Spinach Dip in Cucumber Cups
  • Chicken Salad Sandwiches
  • Assorted Fresh Fruit
  • Red Velvet Baby Cupcakes

I hope you have a wonderful weekend, please leave a comment and let me know what YOU are doing.

Love y’all!

Don’t venture too far from your ‘puter this weekend, I’m posting another GIVEAWAY worth your time. Stay tuned!

Peace, love, and it’s finally Friday,

Weekly Photo Challenge ~ FACES


I’ve been cooking and slicing and dicing all kinds of goodies today but decided to take a rest and post this week’s photos for The Daily Post. I’m a big fan of this week’s theme ~ faces ~ because it gives me another opportunity to share the beautiful faces of the children I met in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. I love these faces …. the represent so many emotions and experiences for me. Hope you enjoy this collection, I couldn’t choose just one to post!

If you want to participate in the Weekly Photo Challenge, check out The Daily Post every Friday for a new theme …. happy weekend, Y’all!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peace, love, and beautiful faces,

 

 

 

 

Not-So-Wordless Wednesday ~ dreadful drought


I realize it’s Wednesday and I’m supposed to keep quiet for “Wordless Wednesday” but this is my blog and I’m changin’ the rules.

In case you live under a rock and haven’t seen or heard of the drought in Texas, let me show you our yard. Here it is, in all its dreadful, dead, and depressing glory:

Wow, that’s one ugly picture. This won’t be winning any photography contest anytime soon. I didn’t bother trying to “fix” this scene in Photoshop, what’s the point? It is what it is. Not only is our yard doo-doo brown because of the drought, but the “cloud” or haze you see is dust from a natural gas rig behind our house. The not-so-pleasant company decided to remove a 30-foot-tall barrier wall when we specifically requested that it remain in place. Now, when tanker trucks and large pieces of equipment arrive at the site, and a north or northeast wind is blowing, all the white gravel dust is blown onto our property.

For the record: we purchased this property BEFORE the rig and all of its “baggage” arrived. If we had known about it, well, nevermind. Long story.

Back to our doo-doo brown yard.

This picture illustrates the harsh, dangerous, and deadly reality in Texas right now. We’ve been very fortunate in the area we live. Unfortunately, almost four million – FOUR MILLION – acres of land and 2,500 homes and businesses have burned in wildfires across the State of Texas in 2011. 

On a much, MUCH lighter note ….. notice the bright green patch of grass?

Yeah, that’s a water leak. If it were up to me, I’d leave it alone. It’s nice to see a little green in one’s doo-doo brown world!

My most intelligent and honorable Husband confirmed our suspicions when he dug around the grass and found a leaky section of PVC water pipe. We know it’s a very small leak because our water bill has not increased, but a leak is a leak and should be fixed.

I offered to assist Husband in this endeavor by showcasing my incredible trench-digging abilities developed in Haiti. He wasn’t as enthusiastic or impressed as my Haitian co-workers. In fact, Husband responded with an eye roll, “yeah, whatever,” and a heavy sigh. If it wasn’t four-thousand-degrees outside, I’d start digging while he was at work.

Alright, carry on about your Wednesday.

Peace, love, and pray for rain,

Tuesday Truths


Happy Tuesday, Y’all!!!

 

Before I share my Tuesday Truths, I want to remind/invite/encourage everyone to enter my current giveaway – which is also a tribute to the tenth anniversary of September 11, 2001 and supports the 9/11 Memorial and Museum in New York City.

One winner will receive a copy of National Geographic’s “A Place of Remembrance”.

To enter the contest, simply click HERE. Thanks!

 

OK, here are my Tuesday Truths:

 

Number One

I had lunch yesterday with a friend at a wonderful sushi restaurant in the Cultural District of Fort Worth and, like always, I requested a set of “cheater” chopsticks from our waiter. He looked at me like I was crazy! Me, in my usual Polly Anna-ness way, batted my eyelashes and asked again. He said no …. again!

What the heck? Does this nice young gentleman not understand the risk he’s taking by coming between a hungry girl and her lunch?!

He insisted that no customer of his was going to use an embarassing set of “cheater” sticks and proceeded to teach me how to use REAL chopsticks. And, much to the delight of my growling stomach, I ate my lunch! I won’t go into the grueling details of how I hold my sticks, but I ate my lunch and for that I’m grateful.

Thank you, JB, for helping me accomplish a Bucket Listitem!!!!!

 

Number Two

I would really like to attend culinary school. I’m looking into options available locally, but I’m hesitant about the uber-formal training and milk-laden ingredients. While I enjoy fine dining and delicacies from around the world, I’m not exactly serving Husband brown butter fingerling potato and gruyere gratin drizzled in truffle oil on a regular basis.

I don’t know where that particular dish came from in my imagination, but it sounds really good!!!!!!!

 

Number Three

I love watching college and professional football. There’s hardly anything better than a Saturday afternoon tail-gating with friends and family getting ready for a rivalry game. If the weather is chilly enough for a hooded sweatshirt, I’m pretty much happy as a pig in mud. However, the Raiders’ fans from Oakland, CA scare me. They wear freakishly demonic costumes, war paint, and skulls. I admire their team spirit, but they scare the beejesus out of me.

 

What are your Tuesday Truths?  

Share your truths in a comment below. Don’t worry, all of your deepest, darkest secrets are safe with me!!!!!!!!

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