Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Take Me Home Country Road

There is something about living on a country gravel road that I love.

Now don’t get me wrong, it has its downsides.You car rarely stays clean. A heavy rain makes it nearly impossible to drive and in the summer it can get pretty dusty. Oh and rollerblading…don’t even try it.

But, for each bad, there are an awful lot of goods.

First of all, there is privacy. I can run out and get the mail in my underwear if I want (I don’t…but I could.) If I need something out of my car at midnight, I just take a mad dash in whatever I currently have on and no one knows but Sam (my dog). Well, and probably my parents, but they don’t care.

Second, it’s quiet. I am getting in the habit of taking a walk every night with Sam. I just grab my weights, turn on my iPod and take a speedy stroll right down the center of 270th. I love it. And on my walk, I get to see how the calves are doing and monitor how fast the corn is growing (which by the way is doing pretty good.) Oh, and I can pump my weights and know that no one can see me looking like a fool, except of course my Uncle Charlie who is in the fields and doesn’t care.

And finally, it’s extremely useful when moving animals. When we want to bring a cow from my Uncle’s pasture to our house, we just put on a halter and walk her up the road with her calf diligently following behind her. When we need to wash the pigs, we just drive them up the hill to our place…and when we get a steer too fat, we run him down the gravel to loose some weight.

You think, I am joking on that last one, but I am not. When I was younger, I had a Hereford steer that was too heavy and every night after we got done in the cooler, I would have to take a run with him down the road. Good thing I was in shape back then huh?

So what’s with this random post about my love of country roads? Well, Mark is moving into a town home this week and I am starting to get a little sentimental. Goodbye workouts down the gravel, goodbye walks with Sam, goodbye getting my mail in my underwear (I never did that though).
And the worst part is I am never getting it back. First, I will make the move to an apartment in November and then I will move to Mark’s parents house who knows when, which is conveniently located on…a busy paved road.

Part of growing up a country kid is the "country" atmosphere and I am definitely going to miss the dirt road I grew up on.

But, to look at the positives…I have until November and I have always wanted to learn how to rollerblade.

Monday, May 30, 2011

I Would Like Some Customer Service With That

I think you could say I got "wowwed" the other day.

Remember that blog I wrote about the Blue Door Boutique? You know the cute little shop in Georgia that thankfully is online so I can lust over it everyday? You know the one that has this dress that I feel like I have to have?

Well, after I wrote that blog, I got a note from Kimberly (the model of the gorgeous green dress!), thanking me for the kind words and asking me for my address. She wanted to send me a little birthday "happy" from the Blue Door!

Now, I am not even quite sure how she found my blog, but somehow she did and immediately went above and beyond the call of duty to make me feel extremely important. Sure, I am thinking Miss Kimberly must be an extremely nice person to start with, but there's no denying it was extremely good service as well.

Now, if you weren't quite sure what was the value of social media was yet, here is your lesson.

I found out about Blue Door from a blog, I then wrote about it in my blog, which some 100 people read. That alone could have been good enough because 100 more people knew about there store, but realistically who knows if I ever would have bought anything myself (I do have some self-control). But, then Kimberly found my blog (I am sure through some online social media tool) and wrote a simple note and just like that she created a customer for life.

Not only have I checked the website everyday, BUT, I have also checked my mail for the past two weeks straight. 

Last Friday, I got my birthday "happy" --- the nicest note and a gorgeous set of gold earrings that I think will go nice with this dress. :)

So, there are two points to this post. One, good customer service is simple but it goes a LONG way. Two, go check out the Blue Door; you are going to love it. And if you hurry, you still have time to send a belated birthday gift my way. JK :)

I think I will just buy myself a little "happy".

Friday, May 27, 2011

A Birthday Wish List

My family has been good enough to remind me this week that once you turn 23, birthdays aren't a big deal.

I disagree. Birthdays are always a big deal.

So in honor of the big day...which is tomorrow...here's the wish list I promised!

Ever since Miss Crystal Young shared these gorgeous bags on her blog, I have been in love. Luckily Mark knows about my obsession and reads Crystal's blog and hopefully, he's been picking up my not so subtle hints.

I love boat shoes. I currently have about 3 pairs, but two are soo worn out and one is a work pair. I need some new ones and I am thinking I maybe should add a little color to my life. What do you think? Do you like? I think they might be a birthday present to myself. And, I just noticed 10% off this week only because it's boating safety week! Can you say perfect?!

I shouldn't even have to explain. It's gorgeous.

4. Crest White Strips

No joke. I really really really want some, but I am too cheap to spend the 35 bucks.

5.  A BIG Camera Card
I have been rolling on a 256 MG camera card for the last 4 years. I actually think I bought it before GB cards were made. Regardless, it's too small and I need an upgrade fast. I am sick of only being able to hold 20 pictures on my camera; some nights just require more than that.

6. Vera Bradley Bag
I have always wanted this bag. I still want this bag. And I am probably going to continue to want this bag for a while. I think this would be the ultimate travel bag. It would look great in the goose of a cattle trailer and on the airplane. That is important to me.

Now, I could probably continue on, but 1. I don't want to be selfish (there are so many other people out there that need a lot more right now; my prayers go out to everyone impacted by the terrible weather) and 2. I realistically know that none of them are likely. In order to get the gifts on your birthday, you should share your birthday list a little bit before the day before...but hey, Christmas isn't that far away right?

Have a great Friday and a great holiday weekend!

Thursday, May 26, 2011


“I just knew I wanted it to be big.”

Well Kris Humphries you got it.

Wonder what the heck I am talking about? Well Kim Kardashian got engaged last week and if you haven’t heard yet she got a 20.5 carat ring.



I just can’t get my head around that. When you get a ring that big, you can stop wearing other jewelry altogether. None of it will matter; all anybody will do is look at your left hand.

And goodness that thing has to be heavy. I am not telling you how big my ring is (it’s not NEARLY as big as Kim’s) but I find it to be a little overwhelming somedays. Now multiple that shine and that weight by LOTS and you have Kim Kardashian’s left hand.

Photo via People Magazine

Now, right now, my simple self is saying, "that poor girl!" I am sure though she is thinking otherwise. Kardashians don’t do anything small (trust me…I used to be addicted to their show!).

All in all, lucky girl, you know Kim is going to rock it.  But still OMG...20.5 carat. That’s hard for me even to fathom…it’s almost the size of a legit rock I would pick from the field.
Okay, exaggeration. But it’s darn big.

So here is to Kim & Kris. Hopefully the wedding is as over the top as the ring..

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Wordless Wednesday Mystery

We may have had a furry visitor.

Mamma May and I were picking up sticks last week in our trees and found these.

I am no detective, but I do know that that isn't no cow, pig, cat or dog print and that's usually all we have running around our place. 

Whatever this mystery creature was, it was also pretty heavy. Meaning it's no coyote or raccoon.

So, this is when I go all Inspector Gadget on you.

Here are our clues:
1. Whatever it was, it was heavier than me. I wasn't making prints that deep walking around the next day.
2. The paw print was bigger than my hand.
3. It had some serious claws.
4. It looked like it could have crawled up a tree.
5. My parents woke up early Saturday morning to our cows just freaking it out. They were running back and forth in the pasture and my Dad could not get them to calm down and he had no clue why.
6. There has been a bear spotted in our area lately.

Guess, I probably should have told you the last one first?!

Maybe Mark is right and maybe I have a wild imagination, but I am pretty darn sure it was a bear.

But like I said, I am no detective and I am definitely no bear expert. What do you think? Did we have a visit from the roaming mystery bear? Are we lucky it wasn't hungry and didn't eat one of our new baby calves?

Who really knows....I am just hoping it whatever it was, that it roamed itself right out of here.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Part 4: The Country Girl Wedding Registry

Just call me P-Dub.

Well, don't call me that yet; maybe after I get her cookbook, you can.

Since I haven't had much of a call for cooking yet in my life (thanks Momma May for feeding me every night), I haven't had a burning desire for a cookbook.

But trust me, come the day after the wedding, my future husband is going to be happy I have one.

So, when it comes to cookbooks, I am going to be picky and request one from the queen of country living herself, The Pioneer Woman.

Ree Drummond is an icon in the blogging farm wife world...well let's be honest, to the world in general. Her simple & sarcastic blog grew into a book tour, children's book, talk shows, romantic novel, potential movie and I even heard a rumor of a cooking show. She is pretty much a superstar.

Hopefully, if I get this and the Thermomix, I can whip up some Chicken Fried Steak just as good as hers. Heck, I even promise that if I get them both, I will invite all of you over for supper...twice.

Can you tell I am pretty confident the Thermomix is a far-off dream? :)

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, May 23, 2011

A Long Overdue Blog Post

Well hello friends...it's been a while.

My posting has been few and far between lately. I don't know what has been my deal. Regardless, our friendship is being tested and I solemnly swear that I am back and I am going to try my hardest to make it work.

Life has been crazy lately. And not so crazy at the same time. Either way I haven't been extremely productive lately. I don't know if it's been because of the gorgeous weather, the family stuff or the that fact that I found Etsy that I have been missing in action. Most likely it was all 3.

So here is my muy rapido catch-up post.

I am at my favorite place eating right now, trying to get into a productive Monday mode. (It's not working.) I had a fantastic weekend. Avery May was over twice. I got to get a little wild with my good old Randolph girls. Mark and I are getting serious about an apartment (which is good because he is supposed to be moved out on June 1) and we had some legit relax time together.

AND how could I forget...it's my BIRTHDAY week. On Saturday, I will be one year older and one year wiser. Exciting?

All in all, life has been good...but it hasn't been productive. I am failing at the May 3 in 30, my wedding list is getting longer and I have a lot to do this week at work. I have yet to buy a car, but I am hoping to make it a birthday present to myself  and I have not finished my wedding website yet.

But friends, this is life isn't it? It isn't always glamorous, sometimes you just live a week the best you can. 

BTW, "Fancy Pants" is no longer available at Noodles & Co and the stroganaff is not as good. Sad day.

So things to look forward to this week for you from me: 1. A blog about some excellent customer service 2. A Wordless Wednesday Mystery 3. A birthday present wish list 4. A Weekly Wedding Update and finally 5. A Country Girl's Wedding Registry Update.

Get excited people.  :) Happy Monday!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Weekly Wedding Update: Real Or Fake?

Remember last week, when I hated wedding planning?

Well, I have done a 180. Thanks to a trip to Micheal's and the rediscovery of Etsy.

Who knew that it's super easy to find "vintage chic" decorations? I literally feel on top of the wedding planning world. I want to get married tomorrow and then the next weekend and the next because I think it's going to be so gorgeous that it could be on repeat again and again.

Anyway, more about that another day. (However, if you don't know about Etsy...don't wait, check it out today.)

Today, I have a serious question for all of you. Should I do real or fake flowers?

My mom and Mark's mom say real. I say fake.

Here's my logic:
  1. I want really expensive real flowers that supposedly are pretty fragile. If they're fake, they all of sudden become durable.
  2. I would have something at the end of the night. With real flowers, I throw them away...$200 down the drain in some way. With fake, I could have them forever. 
  3. I know exactly what they look like. Florists make me nervous. They have this vision in their head, but it's almost impossible to show that to me...until 11 a.m. on my wedding day and if I hate them, I hate them.
  4. Plus, how can you not love that bouquet? It's perfect in every way.
So, please voice your opinion. What do you think? Can I get away with it? Or am I crazy? Are you an Etsy shopper too and have some suggestions for me? I would love to hear from you!

And by the way, I am sorry I have not been replying back to comments. My Blogger won't let me comment anymore!? Does anyone know how to fix this? But truly, I love every comment I get it...it makes my day!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: FFA Family

Lately, little brother Jason has been the star of the show.

Between baseball (ranked 4th in state), plays, prom, cattle shows, livestock judging, picking a college and an upcoming graduation...the list could go on and on and on. The point is he is basically our own personal celebrity and...Ann May is his paparazzi running around capturing every moment.

Until Monday that is, when Grandma swept in and stole the show. Gma Niebur has left quite a legacy in the little town of Randolph (and in my life.) You see, she and grandpa had TEN kids. All ten kids went to Randolph. Then all of those 10 kids had kids and most of those grandchildren when to Randolph. She's been a staple at every baseball game, prom, play, grandparent's day, band concert, graduation and FFA banquet at Randolph for many, many years.

Jason is the end of her Randolph dominance (of course, she's lucky and has some great-grandkids roaring and ready to plague the hallways with our usual ruckus, but it will be a little while). So, in honor of her years of dedication and the end of an era, Grandma (Grandma Dixie as most call her) got a pretty big honor at the latest Randolph FFA Banquet--she was given her Honorary Chapter Degree. We're pretty proud of her...and she was pretty mad no one warned her! :)

Just in our family, Grandma has three FFA presidents and one vice president (I know I was a slacker!), probably bought thousands of dollars in fruit, donated hundreds of bushels of corn and listened to Ed Terry ramble off all those chapter degrees way too many times. In my opinion, that last one alone makes her deserving of a honorary degree!

It's amazing how important grandparents are in your life and my grandma is pretty darn special. She's sometimes ornery, she speaks her mind, she's the greatest euchre player around and she is the most honest and caring person I have ever known. I haven't met a single person who doesn't love her and I want to grow up to be her.

By the way, good job little brother on being the Chapter Star Farmer. I guess there is a reason you're the star lately?

And yes, I know it's supposed to be a "wordless" Wednesday, but I couldn't help it. It needed some words...even thought I am sure our good-looking selves could have been good enough!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Girls Night!


I am up in Fargo getting ready to run some errands to get me ready for a bachelorette party for the beautiful Lindsay Waugh! So excited to be back together again... :)

It's a gorgeous day, can't wait for it to begin.

If you don't remember my country girls, they are the ones I was sobbing about missing some 365 days agao, they were all graduating and leaving me in Fargo. Now we are all grown up and getting married!?!

Have a great weekend! Enjoy the beautiful weather!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Weekly Wedding Update: 6 Months Away

6 months.

6 months? 6 months? 6 months?

6 months until we get married.


Breathe. We are going to be fine. Relax.

Practice those words and tell me when I start hyperventilating in five minutes.

I am not rewriting the list, because nothing has changed. Except I am not doing Save the Dates (so make a mental note and save the date that is 6 months from now!), I am hopefully getting a video done and I have some things figured out about desserts.

Now, please understand I am not in panic mode because I am nervous about marrying Mark. Marrying Mark doesn't make me one bit nervous, it's the planning that does. I can't wait to marry Mark and I am pretty sure he can't wait to marry me (or least that is what he tells me). I can't wait to go home everyday & see him, I am so looking forward to cooking supper for two with him and folding laundry while we watch TV and I am not even really hating the idea of changing my last name.

As he reminded me this morning, when I sent him an email to remind him that we were getting married in 6 months from the day, I am pretty darn lucky.

I have always told me friends don't be in a relationship that you aren't proud to share. Meaning, do you have a story that one day you will want to pull out the photo album and tell you grandchildren about? I do and that is what makes me so lucky.

Sure, no doubt we have had our share of ups and downs. We have moments we would do anything to take back, we have words that we wish had never been spoken and we have memories that make us cringe. There are some people, some things, some ideas that are much better left behind; but for every bad there are 100 goods.

I found guy that is annoyingly more passionate about cattle than I, who wouldn't mind watching a reasons tape for a date, who doesn't mind that I am a personal space heater, who thinks my cons are really pros and who is going to make me laugh everyday for the rest of my life (or annoy the heck out of me...the jokes might stop being funny some day?!?).

Point of the matter is, I have seven years of photo albums to show my grandkids one day. And, it's all going to start with..."See here in this picture, this is when I beat your grandpa in the Maine Anjou steer class...your grandma was always better at showing cattle then him...it was love at first sight."

Just kidding, kind of. :)

These next 6 months could go really slow so I could somehow get everything done or they could absolutely fly by. I don't really care, one way another I have my happy ending! Hope you get yours too! Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

3 in 30 | May

Happy May! 

You might not know this, but May is my month! It's when good things tend to happen in my life - it's my birthday month, my last name month and hopefully finally when spring comes. I am definitely looking forward to productivity, fun and sunshine. And with May, comes another 3 in 30.

Goal 1: Buy a car. 
I can't put it off any longer. The Alero needs to go. Thanks for all of your comments on my recent blog about car shopping; they all were so helpful! I am actually now leaning towards a Camry, everyone had good reviews. I am hoping that by June 1 I am a new (or newer than what I have) car owner, regardless of how stressful it is.

Goal 2: Exercise everyday.
I like my gym, but this month I am expanding my limits and goals. I want to exercise everyday, but it doesn't have to be in the gym or watching a video, it can be a walk during lunch, a bike ride at night or an ab workout before bed, but regardless, I need to do some physical activity everyday. Summer is coming, I need to not only get in shape...but get outside and enjoy some sun!

Goal 3: Stop drinking pop.
Oofta, that was hard to type. Mountain Dew, our relationship is over. No pop all month. Hopefully, if I can kick it for a month, I can kick it forever. Water, juice, tea, milk, coffee, beer...there is a lot of things to replace pop with right? (Note: I am not counting drinks as pop, that just has to happen sometimes!)

Just in case you were wondering, my April 3 in 30 was pretty close to a success story. If I had to grade it, I would give it a solid B, which means I definitely have room for improvement.

Goal 1: Snap Fitness 3X/week.
Well, I didn't regularly make a 3 a week. But at least once or twice. And, I am making it to my mission to make it 5 days this week, a good start in May will help balance out bad days near the end.

Goal 2: Make a Kate Ries bag.

Well, I realized I am no Kate Ries, but I did manage to complete one bag. It's not perfect, but it is a good start. I have two more to make and at least now I know what not to do. Next bag, I will take some pictures and show you how to get a little creative yourself!

Goal 3: Attack my wedding list.
This is where I get my first F of my life. May has to be better or simply you all aren't gonna be happy come November 5. I did make a list though, so hopefully that will help and this week I have two appointments set up. It's a start.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Could You Live Without FB?

I have told you this before and I will say it again. I really like infographics.

They are catchy, easy to read and usually have a pretty astounding point to show. I read this one today in the PR Daily Newsletter and I thought you might like to know what your world would be like without Facebook.

Sure, you might be an anti-Facebooker who doesn't have time, thinks it's stupid or just strongly believes it's ruining the world; but more than likely, your like me. It's part of your life. It is how you find information, know what your friends are doing and how you stay in touch. In my world,  Facebook/Twitter/ect. are the norm. I don't think it makes my generation "anti-social," instead, I believe it's our way to gather information, just like watching the 9 o'clock news might be yours.

So if your like me, ask yourself, what would your life be like with Facebook?

A World Without Facebook

[Via: Single Grain]