Monday, February 28, 2011

Catching Up Again~Part One

The worst part about getting so far behind with blogging is feeling like you have to catch up before you can move on.  So...time to catch up so I can move on...part one.  Pictures and gratitude going all the way back to Valentines day.  Valentines day...a day to focus on the heart, so I did.  This is the Willow Tree "Angel of the Heart" statue.  Simple and sweet.

Valentines day can be a depressing day for those that are alone...and I am grateful that I'm not alone, that I'm loved and have a family to love.  Life is good.

Gerbera daisies in an antique Ball jar.  One of my favorite things...especially when it's wintery outside.

Gratitude from a Tuesday...I am on a new women's volleyball team, we're competitive, the team is fun, what a treat...and a fun way to spend some time on a Tuesday.

Gerberas again...different lighting, different room.  What a cheery sight to see when you come into the room.

Wednesday afternoon...a late afternoon text or two and all of a sudden 5 of us ladies are meeting at the American Legion to play BINGO. Woohoo...the excitement never ends around here.  Seriously, it was fun to get out and hang around with friends for a few hours...even if I didn't win.

I have a friend that was layed off from her job a few weeks ago.  Bummer for her, but in between her job searching we've been able to get together and have some fun.  She loves taking pictures as much as I do.  The local Arboratum was having an Orchid we went.

Taking pictures of Orchids and enjoying lunch with a friend on a very foggy day...what a treat.

My watch 'em grow pot has been growing like crazy.  Is this a miniature iris?  Whatever it is, it was the first to bloom.  There is hope for spring.

Eric and I had a fun date going to the Eden Prairie High School girls section finals hockey game against Edina last week.  Edina was ranked #1 in the state, E.P. #2.  Edina won and went on to play in the state tournament.  Girls hockey has really come a long way in the last 15 years or so.

Saturday we spent the day with our folks.  My niece and her baby, Avery, were there too.  Little Avery just keeps getting cuter by the minute.  Happy, busy and expressive.  What a fun day.

I took lots of pictures that day, Avery looks a little sad in this one, but she wasn't, she was just thinking and checking things out.

They were predicting snow for that weekend, so we decided that it would be best to be at home before it hit.  That ended up being a very wise decision...Eden Prairie was in the center of the storm getting 19" of snow.  Just what we needed after a week of finally warmer temperatures.

The boys probably would have had a snow day if they weren't already off for Presidents day.  That's ok.  It was nice not having to go anywhere.

Piles of snow outside, daffodils blooming inside.  I think I'll stay in as long as I can.

After the snow came some more cold days.  It feels like this winter will never end.  The bulbs help.

I hope that you have something that brings hope for better and warmer days ahead!  Catching up part two will be on it's way tomorrow.  Promise.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Rodeo Part Two

Back to the rodeo!  They like to make the rodeo a family event.  They get the kids in training by having a mutton busting contest.  Kids, little ones, riding sheep.  It's crazy.  Hang on little buddy!

They usually fall off pretty quick, and it isn't too far to fall....but those crazy sheep run and leap and the little cowboys usually take a tumble when they fall.
But they get up, dust themselves off....

...and they give the wrangler five and are happy they are ok.

There was a little cowgirl doing the mutton busting too.  She gave it a good try.  Isn't she cute in her pink hat?  And how about the little dude in his chaps??
I think that this little gal has learned that the way to a boys heart is to enjoy gettin' in there and getting dirt on your tiny little jeans.  Look at that little flirt...and then there's the typical boy looking past her thinking about something else.  It starts so young.  :-)
After the mutton busting the real cowgirls come out to ride fast and hard in the barrel racing.  Oh look...a paint!

A wild eyed paint.  These horses have some fire in them.
A little kick and off to the next barrel.  It's fun, it's's something I would have loved to do back in the day.
I remembered this gal from last year.  She had bad posture, still does...don't slouch's time to ride!
And ride she did.

This horse was showing me his dentures...hee hee.
The horses fly, did I mention that?
The cowgirls pucker up and make smooching noises at their horses to speed them up.
See...smooch smooch.  That's a fancy cowgirl shirt!

Smooch smooch....fancy necklace...I like it!  Nothing wrong with looking good while you're riding fast.  They're fun to watch, it was over way too fast.
After the barrel racing they had a little light hearted dog show.  10 dogs of every mixed breed you can imagine.
They jumped through hoops, some slow and low....
Some fast and high.  Old dogs, young dogs....

...energetic dogs, sleepy dogs.

Dogs that rolled barrels....dogs that crawled through rolling barrels.
The one thing that the dogs all had in common was that they were all adopted from shelters.

This one hopped and walked on his back legs...while smiling.

The dogs have one other thing in common.  They are all very loved and they love that clown right back.  Just look at those adoring blue eyes watching his every move.  That was the best part.
Ok...back to the rodeo...time for the grand finale....the bull riding.
The bulls are strong and have one thing on their mind...get out of that cute and get rid of that fly on their back.  Things move pretty fast when the gates open!
This one jumped and then spun...doesn't look good for the cowboy....
...and that's that.
Some riders wear helmets, some don't.
I know cowboy hats look cooler....
...but sometimes when their heads meet up with the hard head of the bull....
...a helmet seems like a good idea.  Ouch.  Knocked goofy with a mad bull ready to teach you a lesson for trying to ride him.

That where the clowns step in and distract the bull until the cowboy can get out of the arena.  Look at these two working together.  I don't think I'd want their job.
Bull riding is messy.  There's dirt, there's manure.....and there is bull slobber.  Ewww.
This one had great slobbering technique....he spun it in a complete circle.  I think he was making a ring to buck the cowboy into.  Yuck...I wouldn't want to land in that!
The bulls won for the most part at this rodeo...until this guy came out.  Charlie Barker with his purple shirt.
Bucking and kicking...nice technique!
Good posture!  :-)

Hanging in there for the full 8 second ride....

...and then he stuck the landing.  Woohoo.

And it was all over before we knew it.  The winners of the barrel racing and the saddle bronc riding came out.
The over all winner came out, thanked the crowd....
...and tipped his hat.  The World's Toughest Cowboys.  They are tough, that's for sure.
They end the show by letting the broncs out to run around the arena.  They like to stretch their legs, and there is something that feels very freeing watching them run.

Great seats, a good show, no injuries, a handsome date and free running horses to finish the night.  It doesn't get much better than that!