Veteran’s Day 2013

This morning at 11:11 am, I, along with two other students, and seven faculty/staff members at Hendrix College, read war-related poetry at Young-Wise Stadium Plaza in honor of those men and women who gave their lives fighting, those who served our country and are now veterans, those who are still serving this country actively, in the Reserve or the Guard, and of course, those families who support them. Every aforementioned person has made an ultimate sacrifice for our country, and I’d like to thank each and every one of them for all that they have done. They are truly an inspiration to me, and motivate me to fight each and every day for what I believe in. Here’s to you. Happy Veteran’s Day!

The two poems I read are:

“Afghan Christmas Day” by Mark Quince and “I Am With You” by Hannah Carpenter, both written in 2009

http://www.warpoetry.co.uk/Afghanistan%20War%20Poetry.html#Christmas

http://www.warpoetry.co.uk/Afghanistan%20War%20Poetry.html#I_am

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Veterans of Foreign Wars Flower

Veterans of Foreign Wars Flower

 

 

 

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Fishin’ Pals!

Today I had the incredible opportunity to go fishing with my friend Kristi at her parent’s house here in Conway and we had an absolute adventure! The sun was shining with just a few clouds, a little bit of a breeze: perfection.

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Mommy got one!

Mommy got one!

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Kristi and her first fish of the night!

Kristi and her first fish of the night!

Here fishy fishy!

Here fishy fishy!

My first fish of the night :)

My first fish of the night 🙂

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Boots and mommy :)

Boots and mommy 🙂

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Grrr! haha

Grrr! haha

As you can see from the pictures, Boots loved the water (he didn’t swim though)! He would stare at the bobbers in the water and whenever they moved, he would cock his head (sounds like we could train him, Chrys 😛 ) He tried attacking the fish each time we caught one and was so astounded by their movement. Kristi and I each caught a few fish, some of which swallowed the hook and we had to take back to the house to clean out and save to cook (although I won’t be partaking in the cooking or eating this time). It sure was a blast and I can’t wait to go out there again soon!

Boots’ First Dog Park Visit!

Today was my baby’s first day at a dog park and being around more than just three dogs 🙂 We went to Murray Park in Little Rock on a 2 acre fenced dog park! It made me think of a kindergartener going to their first day of school! We walked in, and he whined a little bit and turned back jumping on me. After being around the dogs a little bit, he started to run and play with them. And our last 45 minutes at the park, he was finally playing fetch and tug-o-war with a couple of the other dogs! It was a beautiful day with a high of 85 degrees, cool crisp air and not a cloud in the sky. It was a wonderful experience and we will definitely be going back on the weekends! Thank you to Chrys who brought this baby boy into our lives 🙂 And thank you to both of you for helping me from sun up to sun down to keep a smile on my face. I love you both!

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Life to Live

Well, this weekend, my family and I celebrated the life of my step-grandpa Wally, and it couldn’t have gone any better. He had his family there and a whole room full of bikers who loved who he was and how he lived his life. Through all of our stories and recollections of memories that we experienced with my grandpa, it’s amazing to see just how much joy he brought into each of our lives. Granted, he might not have seemed on the outside to be the biggest teddy bear: riding his Harley with the most profane stickers on his helmet J But he would give anything he had to help those who needed it and was loved dearly by his friends and family. I was given the amazing opportunity to wear his helmet and ride on the back of his bike with my step dad and do him justice by cruising on and letting the wind blow through our hair, living the simple life. I didn’t spend much time with my grandpa during my life, but I do remember he was the first person I rode on the back of the motorcycle with and the joy and humor he shared with every person he came in contact with.

I live every day of my life doing my very best to help whoever I can as much as I am able to. And that is what I want to do the rest of my life: help those who need me, whether it’s teaching, being a helping hand, listening without judgment, donating my items, clothes, money or time, or sacrificing my pride for what is needed for the better.

Hopefully, all of you reading this know that I am always here, no matter the circumstances, to support you and help you with things that are valuable to you in your life. My family and close friends are the closest things to my heart before anything else. And I will do whatever I can to help even those I’ve never met who need help in some form or fashion. Anyone can have a list of a million accomplishments, but all that matters in the end is those who helped us through those times along the way, and whose lives we were able to influence for the better. I remember my parents drilling my brothers and I about the meaning of important words: integrity, character, respect, honesty, loyalty, compassion, faith, and love. Still, to this day, these words are ones that I live by.

That day of celebration also taught me about what this life is about.

It’s not about living the perfect life. It’s not about how much money you have in your wallet or the bank. It’s not about working your life away. It’s not about all of the material things you have inside your home to show off. It’s not about having everyone’s approval when making your own decisions on how you want to live.

It’s about what you stand for. It’s about giving everything you are to help improve the lives of those less fortunate. It’s about doing things that make you proud of who you are. It’s about being grateful for the ability to take another breath, see another sight and live out another experience. It’s about having fun. It’s about sharing happiness and genuine optimism for what this life has to offer. It’s about loving those who love you.

Mom, Dad, Daddy, Angel, Chrys, Allan, Steele, Faith, Grama, Papi, Grandmama, Gumpy, Grandma, aunts, uncles, great-aunts, great-uncles, cousins, and my wonderful friends. I am more than grateful that you have been by my side through this journey. I have a long road ahead of me. But rest assured: I won’t forget to stop and smell the flowers along the way.

I love you.

In Lieu Of National Service and Remembrance Day

As we all know, today is the 12th anniversary of September 11, 2001. My little sister wasn’t even a month old at the time. We were living in a home undergoing renovation in Largo and I was 6 years old in first grade. I don’t truly remember the sequence of events as to how I found about the disaster of the Twin Towers, but I do know it changed a lot of people. Over the years, as I have gone through middle and high school and now college, each year seems to show to me more and more the patriotism and faith in community that people feel towards the incident. This incident brought about the Middle Eastern war that we are still pushing through (luckily troops are being withdrawn), and I am extremely grateful to each and every military personnel, citizen soldier, and emergency personnel for their dedication at our nation’s time of need, as well as through the years that we have tried to put an end to what began that day. We will always remember.

But I wanted to take this day also to talk about the two boys in my life that have helped be my saving grace through this transformation that I have undergone in the past year. As everyone knows, Chrys has done so much to help me come out of my shell, and be more outspoken and confident in who I am and what I am meant to be in this world full of unknowns and what-ifs. My other boy, who Chrys likes to call Killer, who I have come to call Jaws, would be our puppy Boots. I am grateful every single day that I have been blessed with two amazing companions and best friends who have seen me at my worst and at my best. Not a day goes by that I don’t do my best to show my thanks for all they have helped me through, and all they continue to help me through. I love these boys so much.

Thank you to my family who is here for me every day, no matter what is going on in the world around us, for being full of love and support for my decisions in life and helping guide me down a path of happiness and success as my life unravels. Thank you to my parents who have helped me more than anything to keep a good head on my shoulders and challenge myself in anything I do to help make me a stronger woman who can take on whatever “life” throws my way. Thank you to the friends who have stuck with me during my big move into the next phase of my life. Thank you to my other puppies, Coco and Chablis, for helping me stay sane all these years before Boots came into the picture. And most of all, thank you to God for guiding me with both my head and my heart to pursue the life I am meant to live, with those who I love, and those who return that love. For each and every one of you, I am always appreciative.

Love always,

Coral, Princess,  Honey Bunny, Doral, Snookems and Pumpkin ❤

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