Breaking the Rules

/ 11:03 AM

 I hate coloring.
I kind of always have, even when I was little, so the idea of adult coloring books is kind of a "really?" thing for me but okay.
#YouDoYou #NotJust4Kids #BreakingTheRules
Two of my 4 adult kids love it! For me, never really my thing though.

I liked the idea of coloring. 
I loooooved the 64 count crayon box, which, when I was little,
was the epitome of all coloring boxes. 
I even loved looking through the coloring books, picking out the one with the perfect pictures that had the most intricate designs because
the largest open spaces were
soooo boring
Especially when you'd start that big space nice & neat but it kept going on & on so your coloring would get fainter & less precise & then
FAB.U.LOUS

Now the entire thing looks horrible so why even finish it at all??
[My first signs of perfectionism showing much, Bren?] 
So, pick the coloring books with the fanciest designs
please & thank you!

Here's the thing about me & coloring though:
I'd get on the floor with the coffee table as my artistic space, turn on the cartoons & choose my page I've honored be my masterpiece 
[you're welcome, you lucky little kitty cat, you] 
but within minutes, I'd be bored out of my ever lovin' mind 
unless someone was sitting next to me. 
#socialbutterfly #jabberjaw #whatever


And for the love, do not point out if I colored outside the lines!
 Worse yet, don't tell me that my bird can't be orange
or that a tree can't be blue.
Honnnnneeey, this is my imagination:
it can be whatever I deem it to be.
Whatever I think, I can create.
 

My Mind = My Rules
thankyouverymuch

Someone once told me that I'd change how I felt about a lot of things as I got older, but since I'll be sliding into 51 here in less than 2 weeks, I think that if that were to happen, I'd have happened by now. Here are the truths I believe:

1. You can only truly control one thing in your life:
your personal credibility, so guard it well

2. Respect is earned:
try not to mess it up but if you do, fess up & apologize.

3. Rules are made to be challenged:
Wear white after Labor Day & for the love, color outside the lines!

4. Well behaved women rarely make history.
5. Betty White will outlive us all.
#GoldenGirlsForever




shirt: Junk Gypsies
kimono: Pixley [Stitch Fix]
jeans: Level99 [Stitch Fix]
shoes: Blowfish
---
furniture: Kincaid

 I hate coloring.
I kind of always have, even when I was little, so the idea of adult coloring books is kind of a "really?" thing for me but okay.
#YouDoYou #NotJust4Kids #BreakingTheRules
Two of my 4 adult kids love it! For me, never really my thing though.

I liked the idea of coloring. 
I loooooved the 64 count crayon box, which, when I was little,
was the epitome of all coloring boxes. 
I even loved looking through the coloring books, picking out the one with the perfect pictures that had the most intricate designs because
the largest open spaces were
soooo boring
Especially when you'd start that big space nice & neat but it kept going on & on so your coloring would get fainter & less precise & then
FAB.U.LOUS

Now the entire thing looks horrible so why even finish it at all??
[My first signs of perfectionism showing much, Bren?] 
So, pick the coloring books with the fanciest designs
please & thank you!

Here's the thing about me & coloring though:
I'd get on the floor with the coffee table as my artistic space, turn on the cartoons & choose my page I've honored be my masterpiece 
[you're welcome, you lucky little kitty cat, you] 
but within minutes, I'd be bored out of my ever lovin' mind 
unless someone was sitting next to me. 
#socialbutterfly #jabberjaw #whatever


And for the love, do not point out if I colored outside the lines!
 Worse yet, don't tell me that my bird can't be orange
or that a tree can't be blue.
Honnnnneeey, this is my imagination:
it can be whatever I deem it to be.
Whatever I think, I can create.
 

My Mind = My Rules
thankyouverymuch

Someone once told me that I'd change how I felt about a lot of things as I got older, but since I'll be sliding into 51 here in less than 2 weeks, I think that if that were to happen, I'd have happened by now. Here are the truths I believe:

1. You can only truly control one thing in your life:
your personal credibility, so guard it well

2. Respect is earned:
try not to mess it up but if you do, fess up & apologize.

3. Rules are made to be challenged:
Wear white after Labor Day & for the love, color outside the lines!

4. Well behaved women rarely make history.
5. Betty White will outlive us all.
#GoldenGirlsForever




shirt: Junk Gypsies
kimono: Pixley [Stitch Fix]
jeans: Level99 [Stitch Fix]
shoes: Blowfish
---
furniture: Kincaid

Continue Reading

Have you ever considered what makes you come
completely undone?

For me
this is a no brainer
and at times,
it's made me angry,
if truth be told, 
and if anything about this blog:
I want to remain truthful at all times.

And for me, 
probably more than anything
in the entire world,
it's to be on the receiving end of a 
forehead kiss.

It will unravel me.
It will strip me bare.
It will expose me at my most absolute vulnerable being.

There is something completely and utterly unselfish about forehead kisses.
It's all giving.
Nothing.
NOTHING is expected.
it's all
"I see you
and 
I feel you
and
I love you"
with nothing in return.
Any other kiss is kissed back. 
A hug is felt back in return, even if it's just the feel of their body against you.
A word spoken is still an expectation of a response, even if it's just an expression on their face.
But a forehead kiss?
Zero exception.
It's all given
with nothing received.
Nothing.
Nothing.

If your forehead is the wall to your core
to your soul
to your absolute being
then
 a forehead kiss
is the removable of one single brick at a time
of all the barriers that have been placed over a lifetime of heartaches
and, God help me,
a single forehead kiss
 shakes me.
Towers me.

It almost paralyzes me.

The idea of ONE SINGLE BRICK erected, with the possibility of its removable, is terrifying.
The potential of more than one is mind-boggling.

Thankfully,
most don't know this about me.
And those that do know...
well, most are either dead
or will simply
 never read this.

So safety reigns supreme.

And I'm not sure if that makes me
sad or glad.
or if it just ... 
is.

But for those who read this
and
aren't part of me
but have the ability to kiss the forehead of 
OTHERS...
please.
DO.
Rick and I met online, as people are prone to do these days.
February 9, 2009, he sent me a message and there was something about his eyes so of course, I messaged him back. 
That message turned into a phone call.
That phone call led to a first date the next night.

That next night consisted of me trying to get 3 (of the 4) kids settled and arranged while I drove 30 minutes west and he drove 30 minutes east. He got there before me because I was running late (see the previously mentioned kids -- then ages 7, 8 and 14) so I was getting texts like "If you ever get here" -- spoiler alert: I got there!
(Bigger spoiler alert: he hasn't been able to shake me yet! I'm crafty like that!)

We met at Chili's.
(side note: he now hates Chili's -- not sure what that denotes now that I wrote it...but I digress)
I ordered one kind of fajitas and he ordered another kind and we shared them and I swear it's like I'd known him my 
ENTIRE LIFE.
I talked and talked and talked and I'm like THIS GUY IS THE BEST LISTENER EVER and then later found out he has crazy hearing loss.
... 😒
(side note again: now he has these really fancy blutooth hearing aids so I don't know if he's listening to something on his phone or laptop while I'm talking and talking and talking until he'll finally look up, realize I'm talking, make a pointed gesture to turn OFF his device and then ask me, "Where you saying something?"
I digress.
Again.
anywayyyyyyyyyyyyy...

After my first motorcycle later, the night ended with the best first kiss.
I tell him ALL. THE. TIME. that he got a second date because of that kiss but really, we clicked on a ton of different ways but ya'll, that kiss.

It's like Florida Georgia Line says:
you hope the best one is the last one
Here's our first selfie from a week after we started dating.
(We were OBVIOUSLY already at expert-level with our selfie-game.)

Happy National Kissing Day, Honey.
831






This Kiss

by on 8:02 PM
Rick and I met online, as people are prone to do these days. February 9, 2009, he sent me a message and there was something about his eye...

This week.
It's not been kind.

I hate when I struggle for words since they usually come to me so easily, in fact, usually too easily and I say more than I should. But today, I can't find my words.

I was out of town last week, and Thursday night to Friday morning, I just didn't sleep due to flight plans, and then I had a 3 hour drive back to my house. So from Thursday morning to Friday night, I was awake. By Saturday mid-morning and deep sleep, I started to feel a bit more normal but still kind of dragging. But then Monday happened.

I got that call. The one every parent dreads but it wasn't the worst it could have been.
My 19 year old daughter was sobbing and rambling.
She'd been in an accident.
My heart stopped but at the same time, she was okay -- I could hear her voice so she was okay but she said her head was bleeding. I could tell she was functioning on adrenaline.
She was 2 hours from me, so I went straight into Mom-mode:
What happened?
Where's the car? Is it driveable (would someone need to come with me to handle the car)
Was anyone else with her? Who was at fault for insurance? She hadn't called the police yet -- call the police.

Then someone took the phone from her and told me the information:
The passenger with her was not injured and no other cars were involved. The police and ambulance had been called. The passerby said the rain had made the roads very slick over in those hills. I asked if the car was driveable and she said no, it was totaled.

It was.
Because it had landed upside down.
Thankfully I didn't know that at the time.
Sydney ended up with 9 staples in the crown of her head.
But she walked away. 
We are blessed.

Then yesterday happened.
A couple of weeks ago I posted this post about Keiko and her diagnoses with cancer. Tuesday night, her walking suddenly got worse and she couldn't settle down for the night, almost like laying down was too painful. She kept walking and walking and her nails were like static on the hardwood floors. I finally gave her a Xanax to go with her pain killer for the night and she laid down. But we knew. That's when we knew it was time.

I'd told her to tell me in a vibration I could understand when it was time, and by Wednesday morning, her walking was even worse but oddly enough, she kept trying to go into our bedroom. She never goes in there. So I made the call to the vet and then had to wait a couple of hours until our appointment time, feeding her more pain killers and just petting her and sobbing. I posted on a final video asking for prayers and strength and my friends gave us that and more as we said goodbye.

And now here I am today, on Thursday.
This week has taken so much from me.
From us, as a family.
I'm struggling to find my gratitude but I know I have to.
With Sydney, it's easy: my baby came home alive and in REALLY good condition compared to her car. How many parents don't have this kind of fortune?
I KNOW I'm so blessed!
And in a really neat twist, one of my facebook friends is friends with the passerby who stopped and helped Sydney, and Syd was able to thank her on my post!
I mean, how neat is that? What a small world our social media is!

Even with the sadness of Keiko, we had a great dog who gave us crazy funny memories to last us a lifetime. And one day, those memories will make me laugh again instead of sending me into a sobbing mess. But that's not where I am today.

It's moments like this when I want to pull the kids closer and keep them here, safe, but I can't.
It's moments like this that I declare I won't get another dog again and start this process over (we've lost SIX now since moving into this house 10 years ago. Two just last year and Keiko this year. They're all buried in our garden.)
We have two left: Raiden and Casanova.
Casanova is 10  and Raiden is 8 and we knew all of these dogs would be aging together.

I feel like my joy has been depleted and I need it refilled to overflowing to dilute the pains of this week. I know those moments are coming. Little by little, my joy will be refilled.

So when I'm done crying, I'll straighten my crown.
And then I'll start moving again.
Wednesday, we realized we'd never driven the Jeep at night, so guess what we did Wednesday night.Top off, doors off, open road and the radio up!



I could not get over how exact the sunbeams were, so I took more pictures than I needed and I'm not sorry about it either. Trust me when I tell you that I trimmed through these pictures 5 times and I still had to have these as my MUST haves:


These are 100% in the order I took them, going 70mph. I couldn't really see what was going on most of the time because it was dark and I was just keeping my eye on that sunset and trying to enjoy the moment while also CAPTURING the moment. So sometimes the camera lightened like this one and I caught more door frame than I intended but love the pics anyway:




Chasing that setting sun!!


This just defines God's country for me!

LOVE how this tree turned out!



As the sky went from oranges into pink and purples, the pics weren't nearly as sharp or clear so I didn't keep them but I got this shot that's pretty neat, aimed directly behind us, back out and over the spare tire.


It was so perfect!
We drove for about an hour. I tried to take video but with the top and doors off, there's just too much wind noise but imagine 77* and 80's music and the diamonds of the stars literally above your head with nothing to hinder your gaze from ANY direction. 

I highly recommend it. 
It was so great, we did it again the next night.
If you ever have the opportunity to buy a Jeep, it's just what this not-a-doctor ordered.
Such a cure for the soul.

And before we knew it, Mr. Moon was shining bright.
Sleep well, my friends, and dream of jeeping.



















Chasing Sunsets

by on 7:32 PM
Wednesday, we realized we'd never driven the Jeep at night, so guess what we did Wednesday night. Top off, doors off, open road and the...
I'm sure every Small Town to Big Town drive has one.
You know the house: that one house that just looks like it's been there since forever and one good storm will be its doom.

For me, this is the one.

I swear at sunset, rays of light will beam right on through it. 

I always told Rick I wanted to get a photo of it before it was too late but in the 10 years he and I have been together, I never took the time to do it.

Until today.

Today, we turned the Jeep off the two lane highway that connects our small town to the big town we were headed to for lunch just to take the picture of this house that I've always wanted to take.

Zoomed in, it looks like this:

Not the clearest of pictures taken with my phone but honest to God, I have NO idea how this thing is still standing. We've had CRAZY tornado activity in the area in the last few years (this year included) and yet, this remains.  And Rick just informed me that more thunderstorms are expected tonight.

We continued down the gravel road and around the curve and saw the back of the house.



It looks to have had this really neat curve to it in the back, and if you notice in the above photo, it seems to have had a distinctive decorative room on the left side as well. 

It doesn't seem to be your average country farmhouse in the middle of a flat central Texas crop field like you normally see around here. 

Then the birds flew in and landed, reminding me that this house is theirs now.

I wonder about the family who lived there.
What memories were made between those walls still standing?
The hopes and dreams
the disappointment of failing crops
or the excitement when crops were plentiful!
 The whispers of children staying awake, giggling under bedclothes
the smell of bread baking
dogs herding cattle and chickens pecking the ground
screen doors banging and seasons changing and...

\I guess they were just like the average family after all.


If you don't follow me on FB or Instagram
you may not know we have a new Jeep!
It's my first ever Jeep -- a Rubicon JL Unlimited in Firecracker Red
(I think the name is quite fitting, don't you?)
Rick had a Jeep in the 80s, so he's an old pro at this 
(no pun intended...)

We had the Challenger SRT 6 Speed for a few years & we'd had fun with her but it was time to trade for something new & Jeep was up next!
But TURBO because let's not be silly 



But today was EXTRA special because today was the first day that we
STRIPPED
HER
DOWN!

off came the top & the doors
and she was beautiful in all of her naked glory
basking in the Texas heat of summer



And then Rick said the magic words:
"Wanna go somewhere?"

Well yes, yes I do.
After all, it's 5 o'clock somewhere.