Friday, September 28, 2012

May Or May Not

I may or may not have bought my very own box of chocolates last night and then proceeded to eat most of them.

I may or may not have been a senior in high school 15 years ago.

I may or may not be freaking out by that last sentence.

I may or may not have put on my work-out clothes for the last three days yet did not work out once.

I may or may not have eaten an apple with a worm in it.

I may or may not have gotten really excited when I saw the Backstreet Boys on the Old Navy commercial (although I may or may not have been a bigger *NSYNC fan).

I may or may not wish I could be Carol Burnett.

I may or may not...

...wish I could play the electric banjo.

...wish I could run the hurdles and not fall flat on my face.

...wish I could host Saturday Night Live and be the musical guest (with my electric banjo) all on the same night.

I may or may not want to have triplets someday.

I may or may not wish that I could eat cold peach cobbler for breakfast every morning.

I may or may not wish that I could learn how to put on green eyeliner without looking like a muppet.

I may or may not be really, really glad that it is Friday.

Nope, I know that one.

I am really, really glad it is Friday.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

An Evening In Paris

I almost wish this post was about a romantic evening I spent in Paris, eating chocolate and dancing around like Gene Kelly in a beautiful dress with sparkles on it, but it is actually a post about my brother.


I am here to announce Treehouse Sanctum's final event of the season at Paris on the Platte this Friday.

And guess what?!  YOU ARE INVITED!

Yep, you.

You should come. It is going to be great! And it is on a Friday night, so if you are anyone but me, that means you get to sleep in the next morning! Total bonus.

So, here are the deets:

Who: Treehouse Sanctum and other really, really great bands
When: Friday, September 28
Where: Paris on the Platte
Time: 8:45

And I am happy to announce that I finally received a payment for my PR skills. Sam recently took me to see Gregory Alan Isakov (who I thought was actually Bon Iver) as a way to say "thanks, sis" for all that I do. I enjoyed every moment of the concert (after I realized who I was listening to) and especially appreciated Sam's comment about Isakov, "His music makes you want to dream."

True that, brother. And perhaps take a nap.

See you Friday, peeps!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The GDE: The Cyber World

A few mildly amusing observations from the first few days of the Great Dating Experiment (GDE):

To cyber wink at someone is the equivalent of someone noticing you from afar but is too wimpy to talk to you.

A cyber smile is someone who will at least make eye contact and smile back at you but is still too wimpy to talk to you.

A cyber hug is just creepy.

Thus begins the online dating marathon. If you don't pace yourself, you'll end up becoming cyber engaged to someone you have never actually met. Yet, if you do not act at all, you will be a cyber loser, all alone in the great, wide world of online dating.

And I thought my real life was complicated.

This is why I have handlers. I owe them, big time.

Monday, September 24, 2012

I Went Hiking

I went hiking this weekend and I didn't totally hate it.

I know, right!? It's like I don't even recognize myself anymore. One minute I am online dating and the next I am actually hiking.

The next thing we know I may just strap on a helmet and rock climb. But let's not get ahead of ourselves.

Yesterday, mom, Sam, Noah, Chuggy, the newest canine member of our family, and I spent the day in Alamosa with my dad. After a stop at McDonald's in Pueblo to get Noah a coke and some bacon, we arrived in time to eat an early lunch and head out for our hike. We drove to a nearby hiking trail where we hiked up to Zapata Falls. It was beautiful and peaceful and wet.

The colors are in full bloom in the Sangre de Cristos.

The adventurers.

 Neon is so in this season.

The 'rents.

The eldest sibling.

Proof that I actually hiked.

No swimming? No problem.

This kid is an expert. He told me that he doesn't need to stop and rest like the rest of us. He proved this by running up the trail. Show off.

Chuggy the Wonder Dog. She is like a large, black bear. She took up the entire back end of Sam's jeep.

I love her.

The hike to the actual falls was treacherous. Sam and Noah did it twice. I did it once and consider it a huge accomplishment. I am trying to be more brave in the outdoorsy world.

The top fall is 30 feet tall and the second is around 5 feet. This picture does not accurately capture it.
Oh, and it is very wet.

And here we are.

None of us fell in.

Total success.

Changed His Mind

Recently, we received word from the court that the judge did in fact change his mind and has now denied the request for my dad to transfer to Denver. This means that the remainder of his sentence will have to be spent in Alamosa, barring a miracle, of course.

And just like that, we are back to making Alamosa our home away from home.

This change in ruling is being appealed. That process can be quite lengthy and no change in outcome is guaranteed, but it is nice that we can at least voice our complaint in hopes that someone else will see things differently.

My heart is bruised but my soul is hopeful.

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Great Dating Experiment

For years, I have politely turned down the suggestion/recommendation/urging/prodding/pleading of others to join an online dating website. I honestly have nothing against them, it's just the thought of them makes me want to puke.

You see, I am a dating kindergartner. I can travel to crazy places and speak in front of hundreds of people, but when you ask me to flirt with some cute guy, I become mute and awkward, two wonderful qualities to have when you are looking for the father of your children.

Filling out the online profile is what gives me the most trouble. I am sure you are wondering why since I seem to do just fine talking about myself on this blog, but marketing yourself to a cyberworld of available creepers men just isn't my cup of tea. I second-guess everything I write.

Do I say I love college football or does that look like I am trying too hard?

Do I say I want a guy who is hard-working and dependable and kind and funny or is that being too picky?

Do I say I love chocolate or will they think I need more time on the treadmill?

And don't even get me started on which pictures to post because that is an entire counseling session waiting to happen.

I feel like I am trying to win "The Bachelor" but I am not even sure I want the guy in the first place!

The whole process makes a life of singlehood sound pretty darn great.

So, last night was Women's Group and for some crazy, insane, psycho reason, Jenn and Rachel decided that it was time to set up an online dating profile for me. They said they would take care of all the details and I wouldn't have to worry about a thing.

Essentially, two of my dearest, closest friends are going to become my dating agents and campaign on my behalf, all in the name of love and happily ever after.

I have no words for this.

Jenn, Rachel, Heather, Natalie and I spent the next hour and a half uploading photos, filling in profile questions and determining which personality color I am, which is blue, by the way. And for the next month, they will screen, sort and set me up on a variety of dates.

Dear Jesus, come quickly.

You guys, I am so nervous about this. What if no one "winks" at my profile? What if I meet a bunch of wackos? What if I actually meet the man of my dreams and I just sit there, mute and awkward?

Oh gosh, now I want to puke again.

I have no idea what this will look like but I will keep you posted on the highs and lows of the online dating world.

So, let The Great Dating Experiment (that hopefully won't be a complete disaster and I can at least get a free cup of coffee out of the deal) officially commence!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Really, Really Good Things

Today is a day for warm cookies and a long nap on the couch.

Today is a day for a good book, preferably one you have been anticipating to read for a long time.

Today is a day for... encouraging word

...a sense of calm after a storm

...the realization that you are more than a conqueror through Him.

Today is a day for your sister to come over and watch Hulu with you.

Today is a day for the promise of something new: a new job, a new house, a new haircut, a new pair of shoes, a new squishy baby.

Today is a day for... dad to come home.

Today is a day for baked potato soup, a pair of stretchy pants and The Goonies.

Today is a day for letting go of the past and running towards the future.

Today is a day for...

...picking up a new hobby

...picking up an old hobby

...picking me up a salted caramel mocha.

Today is a day for a really great first date.

Today is a day for being kind, being sincere, going the extra mile to show someone you care. Today is a day for laying down yourself so you can pick up someone else.

Today is a day for the light to shine in the empty, lonely darkness and for the burdened to be set free.

Today is a day for living, not just being.

Today is a day for us to be better friends than we were yesterday.

Today is a day to wear red pants.

Today is a day for really, really good things.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

It's Still Me

Fear not!

You have arrived at The Frustrated Cowgirl. I just needed a face lift, you know? Apparently planks of wood were in order.

I am not sure what that means.

Probably nothing.

Good day to you.

Top Ten: Fall TV Shows of 2012

After months of finding nothing on television except for the Kardashians and the Olympics, I am super excited for Fall TV! Not only am I looking forward to returning shows, but some of the new ones hold a lot of promise. Of course nothing will ever come close to Seinfeld or Tim Riggins Friday Night Lights, but I do appreciate a valiant effort.

So, here are my top ten in a complete random-type order:

1. New Girl - I loved this show last year. It is so weird and quirky and Schmidt could be one of the funniest characters on TV right now.

2. Parks and Recreation - I adore this show for so many reasons, but mostly I love it for Ron Swanson. His mustache alone should have it's own place in television history. Between him, Andy, April and Tom, I very rarely stop laughing. And having Paul Rudd guest star last year was perfection.

3. Modern Family - Phil Dunphy. Need I say more?

4. Revenge - This is my guilty pleasure, for sure. The plot is crazy, the characters are devious and I am always blown away by Emily/Amanda's self-control and ninja-like skills. I cannot wait to see what Season 2 has in store! Let's just hope that Victoria Grayson didn't blow up in the plane, the television world needs more of her.

5. Parenthood - Big kudos to NBC for starting this show early. It is so nice to watch new episodes of one of my favorites before the end of September. I love this show because it is as real as a TV show can be without being a reality series (not that reality TV is all that real, unless you are on an episode of COPS). This hour of television always leaves me wanting more but a little afraid of what might happen next to the Braverman family.

6. Revolution - This is a new show this season and I am already loving the premise of it being in a post-technology America. (After four days on a cruise ship without my cell phone, I am totally in favor of shutting things off every once in a while.) This show reminds me of The Hunger Games, and since I am a big fan of that series, here's hoping that this show will be around for a while.

7. Smash - Oh, musical theater, you are like a long-lost friend! I loved the first season of this show because of the amazing singing and dancing. Of course the plot was pretty entertaining as well, but we all know we watch musical theater because of the music. I am tentatively looking forward to the second season just because I am unsure of where the story will go from here, but as long as Katharine McPhee keeps singing, it will be great!

8. Castle - This show remains one of my favorites because Rick Castle is so darn charming. And now that that he and Kate Beckett have found each other's lips, this next season is bound to be entertaining.

9. Psych - This show could be the most underrated show on TV. It is pure genius and I implore everyone out there to watch all 6 seasons before season 7 starts in October. Trust me, you will not be disappointed! ("You heard about Pluto? That's messed up!")

10. Go On - Because I really want Chandler Bing to do well.

As you can see, I am a big fan of ditching reality for a while and becoming totally absorbed in make-believe! There is nothing I love more than to curl up with a dozen two pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, tuning out then tuning in.

So, what are your favorites this season?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Lip Balm

I forgot to grab my chapstick this morning. I hate when that happens.

Happy Monday to you.

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Lost Tooth Melody

When I was six-years old, my big brother knocked out one of my front teeth.

SIDE NOTE: He actually knocked out both of them but on separate occasions. We were a very loving family, as you can see.

For this particular tooth, we were playing football in my grandpa's front yard. The same front yard that holds so many memories that my brain doesn't know which one to savor first.

It was almost dusk and the air was cold and frosty. All of the cousins, both big and small, were playing and the competition was fierce. This was Oklahoma, as you know, where football is part of your DNA and crimson and cream are the only colors you wear from September through December.

By some minor miracle, I had the football and as I was running towards the end zone/flower bed, I was tackled from behind and my front tooth hit the ground first.

To tell you the truth, it did not hurt one bit. I was more surprised than anything else. And secretly, I was impressed with my toughness.

To his credit, I could tell my brother was very remorseful. The game came to a halt and everyone got down on their knees to search for the lost tooth in hopes that I could exchange it for a few bucks in the night.

Alas, the tooth was never found but the tooth fairy still visited. (You just have to love a tooth fairy who does pro bono work.) And the game continued on as though nothing had happened. It was football, after all.

**Fast forward to last night.**

Sam and Danya, a.k.a. Treehouse Sanctum, had a show last night. It was in a small room in a basement of an old church that now serves as a multi-purpose music venue. The room was small but the crowd was fully engaged in their two-person performance.

I have become quite familiar with most of their songs and "Candlelight Train" just happens to be one of my favorites. It is a song about childhood, about innocence and about the desire to preserve the beauty of that time in your life.

As I listened to the words, I noticed, for the first time, that my brother mentions that beloved front yard, where fireworks and family reunions were common and the one lost tooth that has yet to be found.

I don't know why I had never heard that line before but it was new to me last night.

It made me smile. And then I giggled. And then I sat in silence, overcome by the sweetness of being mentioned in a song (because hey, every girl wants to be written into a song, even if it is by their brother), but also overwhelmed by the loss of something that I will never get back.

And no, I am not talking about my tooth.

I realized that I would give anything to play another game of football in that front yard.

Songs have a way of doing that, you know. They say what mere words cannot.
There is just something about a melody that makes life come alive.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Dear Future Husband - Part 2

Dear Future Husband,

Are you lost?

If so, please ask for directions.

Yours truly,

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Adventures in Babysitting

Last week, before the demon cold of Hades settled into my head, I had the distinct and exhausting privilege of babysitting my friend Melissa's two older boys. She and her hubby took their youngest boy out for a few hours and I jumped at the chance to watch the other two. They are four- and two-years old and are so ridiculously cute that I could suck the goodness right out of their cheeks.

Is that wrong?

I really hope not.

Anyway, these boys are two of my favorites and the minute I walked in the door I knew I was in for a very entertaining evening.

Within the first 30 minutes, I was a stegosaurus, an alligator and a princess. In all three circumstances, the boys responded by running. They ran away from me, ran towards me, ran over me, ran under me, and ran regardless of where I was in the house. They ran because I was scary. They ran because I was tall. They ran because I was an adult.

I do not understand all the running. Can someone explain this to me?

Next, we moved on to singing and dancing. Now this I can handle. It started off happy and peppy and the boys knew most of the words to their current favorite song, "I Am A Promise." However, after approximately 89.3 seconds of controlled singing, the younger of the two thought it would be a good idea to throw clothes on the floor and to wear underwear on his head. The older boy thought it would be wise to move furniture to the center of the room so they could run around it. Again with the running.

This lasted 23 minutes. With the same song on repeat.

Next, and most famously, we played horse. And no, not the kind with a basketball. We played the kind where Sarah lies down on the floor and becomes a jungle gym for two enthusiastic boys and then is asked to walk, run, jump and kick.

As an avid horse lover, I can completely appreciate their desire for an active horse. There is nothing more disappointing than riding a horse that doesn't move. But sometimes horses just need to lie down and think about life and their purpose for living. Is that too much to ask? I am going to be much more sensitive toward the poor horse I ride next.

SIDE NOTE: The next day, when asked what they enjoyed most about my time with them, the older one said that he liked playing horse with me because I came with a saddle. Um, what? Apparently I need to eat fewer pumpkin cookies.

Somewhere in the middle of the rodeo, the doorbell rang. The boys immediately ran to the couch, peered out the front window and began shouting at the stranger. The dog began to bark, sensing an opportunity to meet someone new. And I tried with all of my brain power to unlock the child-proof door. As I peered out the door window, I discovered that it was a political volunteer who was trying to talk to me through the window. With every word, the barking and shouting became louder. I looked at him and shook my head, pointing toward the pandemonium around me, trying to tell him that this was not a good time. He just stood there and kept talking to me, through the window. And all I could think of is "DO YOU NOT SEE THE CHAOS?" Finally, he left a flyer in the mailbox and went on his way.

By the end of the evening, we had moved on from horse to playing puzzles and reading books. I was trying to calm them down for their bedtime before their parents came home. As I was sitting on the couch, surrounded by books, I sensed the younger one staring at me. I turned to my left, almost bumping noses with him, his big, blue eyes looking intently on my face.

And then he whispered, "Can I touch your ear?"

"Um, sure, buddy."

Dear Jesus, please let this be a good decision.

I immediately felt a small, wet finger go straight into my left ear. He grinned and ran away.

And with that, my evening was complete.

Shortly after, his parents came home with their baby boy in tow. I was exhausted. And elated. And I loved every bit of my 109 minutes with them. And I realized I have no idea how Melissa does this on a daily basis. She, and every other mother out there, are superheroes (and horses and dinosaurs and princesses). I am amazed by you.

And I pray that naps may be in your immediate future.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Rudolph's Understudy

I have been sick lately.

The kind of sick that forces you to lie flat on your back with two Kleenexes shoved up your nose at all times. It isn't pretty, folks. Not one bit.

This typically happens to me when I travel. The packing, planning, last-minute errands, flying, waiting, waiting, waiting, walking, talking, sight-seeing and sitting takes a toll on my immune system and before I am even able to unpack from my trip, I am usually hugging a box of tissues and praying that God would give me a new respiratory system.

Alas, He has not.

But He has given very smart people the ability to invent things called drugs. I love drugs. Legal ones, of course. And thanks to drugs, I am now upright.

During my five days of labored breathing, I made the following observations:

1. I am ready for the presidential elections to be over. Who's with me?

2. Ina Garten makes the best food ever. I am pretty sure it has something to do with living in the Hamptons. I should live in the Hamptons. Ina and I could be friends, although I am pretty sure I'll need to buy a pair of loafers for that to happen.

3. Walking up a flight of stairs is a minor victory. Showering is a major victory.

4.  Ice cream is the only thing that tastes good when you have become a mouth-breather. I have a carton of Rocky Road and Coffee to prove that.

5. No matter how hard you try not to sneeze, it is best if you just go for it. The aftermath can be brutal if you don't.

Hopefully I will be back to my chipper self before too long and a bit more regular at keeping you updated on the non-events of my life. Thanks for hanging in there with me, cough drops and all. You're tops.