Wednesday, May 26

The Ugly Truth of Tennis

I am not one of those graceful girls that glisten when she plays sports! I am splotchy red, awkward, trip over my own feet, swing and miss, uncoordinated, zero hand eye coordination, look like I'm going to pass out type girls who you would not want to stand within 5 feet of after playing 20 minutes of tennis, especially in humid summer Alabama weather!
Me, a great example of my awkwardness... :)

Last week Jared and I first started to play tennis, see Hit and Giggle, the second time was a joke, I was awful and hit the ball out of the fence several times! In Jared's words, "You don't really look like you are trying..." I blamed my lack of ability on the huge bruise on my wrist I got the previous night, apparently I don't know how to hold a racket!

So, last night Leah joined us on the court and we all took turns hitting the ball back and forth...again no keeping score, baby steps! :) Leah showed me how to hold the racket so it doesn't create yet another bruise and while I need to get use to how it feels it did spare my wrist!

Leah: That's what she said...

Jared: Are you ready to go?
Rachel: I'm already gross, let's keep playing
Jared: Is that the only reason?
Rachel: Oh yeah... and I'm having fun. [fake smile followed by genuine smile]
Rachel: Oops sorry! Good grief?

Jared: That was good babe
Rachel: Are you sure?
Leah: A lot more have been in then you think

Leah: You are a lot better then you think

Rachel: Ron would not have pulled his wand out like that...

Jared: I'm playing left handed

Leah: Are we as bad as they look?
Rachel: Oops, I wasn't paying attention... I'm ready now

Rachel: It hit my rim... my frame... I mean my rim... which is it?
Jared & Leah: FRAME!

Rachel: I ka... (breath) I tr... (breath) I fi... (breath) I'll (breath) tell (breath) you (breath) later (breath)...

Jared: [as we walked to the car] I hope our kids get my athletic ability!!
Rachel: me too!

Me and Jared after playing our longest grueling hit and giggle game yet! ;)

Motivation tips for slackers from Unclutterer

While Leah and I were in t-town for our girl's trip last weekend (will post about it soon) my sweet hubby did a SUPERMAN type job cleaning the house. This has inspired me to follow suit get organized and start picking out paint! One of the many blogs I follow, Unclutterer by Erin Doland, had a guest blogger, Chaya Goodman, write about Motivation Tips for Slackers. Below is the tip that stuck out to me the most which will help me not get overwhelmed with the many projects I'm wanting to start on the house.

Know your limits.
I’ve noticed that the cycle of slacking for me goes like this: 1. Taking on way too many projects (organizational or otherwise), to compensate for having slacked off; 2. Trying to do all the tasks using poor time management skills; 3. Failing at fulfilling responsibilities; 4. Giving up hope; 5. Slacking. When tasks start piling up, do not touch the dust of taking them on all at once. Be honest with yourself — you’re not a superhero who can stop time. Instead, make a list and deal first with the task with the biggest penalty for slacking. For example, renewing my driver’s license has the biggest financial risk associated with it, so I decided to undertake it before putting away my laundry.

Visit Unclutterer for more tips on how to unclutter your life, it is an easy read and has great insight! :)

Monday, May 24

Cisco's Push Plus Miami and Meow

Just thought these were just silly enough to post! Enjoy!:)

So Cisco got a little camera shy b/c he was pushing me a lot more before we hit action. :)

While reading the Deathly Hollows for the 7th + time Miami and Meow distracted me.

Dads, Mr. No Shoulders and a Dunk

Leah and my weekend at Sawgrass with our dads was a hit!

Pulling up to Sawgrass Friday in the early evening we found Leah’s Dad, Herb, and Papa rockin’ on the front porch getting to know each other for the first time. They looked at us with puzzled expressions similar to the horses that met us at the gate… we were singing Glee’s “Bust Your Windows” at the top of our lungs and just realized our windows were rolled down! :)

After unloading our weekend groceries we went straight to work on our dinner plans (hamburgers, freedom fries, hot pepper corn and buffalo chicken dip). While the Glee singing concert continued in the kitchen the dads interrupted my solo of “Don’t Rain on My Parade” to work outside on the tractor and then to watch sports. Dinner was a big hit and we stayed up swapping horse stories until late with plans to sleep late the next morning.

Herb had coffee ready Saturday morning and then helped Papa with a yummy Sawgrass breakfast: homemade biscuits, sausage, eggs, and grits. It was perfect! Papa planned to watch Clint’s football practice so he headed out shortly after breakfast, leaving us with a full gorgeous Saturday of riding horses!

Leah and Comet

Me and Cisco

Herb riding Red and Leah riding Comet
The second ride of the day we started out on the East side of the property. Cisco was being quite a problem child so I had to remind him a few times who was on him! While riding through thick brush in an open field I saw a LONG black snake slither at the edge of Cisco’s hoof. Luckily Cisco didn’t see it but Mr. No Shoulders was on my mind for the rest of the trip!
Herb and Leah on the east side of the property.

Leah was getting a feel for how to get Comet in a Saddle Gait so we rode the horses pretty hard all day! Since it was so hot and the horses were good and foamy we decided to let them drink some water. We took a short cut to the back side of the Big Bass Lake and let them drink… I’m rarely this adventurous but I had told some stories about how I use to swim with the horses I grew up with so, along with the heat, I was inspired to find some shallow water and swim to the other side of a wall of trees. The shallow water was short lived because I was calf deep in water and I didn’t want my saddle to get soaking wet! So as Leah and I were guiding our horses back Herb was sinking… He hopped off Red and we were all a little panicky because it happened in such slow motion! Can there be quick sand in a lake?? When Red put his head to the side to blow bubbles out his nose I realized he was lying down!!! We had a good laugh and Herb rocked him until he stood up and walked him back to shore. Guess Red was really hot!
Herb and Red after his DUNK! :)

We finished our ride untacked the horses, washed them down and while Leah and I started dinner (hotdogs, chicken, freedom fries, and green beans), Herb went to the lake to fish. After our fabulous dinner we watched Young Guns and went to bed.
Sunday after Herb made us a yummy breakfast (biscuits, eggs, and grits) we were too sore to ride horses so we gassed up the Sidekick and went for a quick mud ride in the rain then off to Taco Casa to complete a fabulous weekend at Sawgrass!

Quotes of the weekend:
Mr. No Shoulders who is under the employment of Big Red!
I’m not that far from panic myself.
I just tell them that it’s Rachel’s fault I like country music!
Ride camel, ride…
You have to think… What is beyond me? Tennessee!
You can bid the mob good day!
It’s all fun and games until someone hits a tree!
It all tastes the same to me.
Summoning Grey with Wicked.
Too much information… Filter, filter, filter!
For such a rustic boyish weekend your dad had to listen to a whole lot of Wicked!

Thursday, May 20

Bust a Quote - Our silly world of quotes

Every member in my family is a self-proclaimed movie expert! We enjoy watching all types of movies (over and over again) and delight in picking movies apart feeling very passionate about where we have tagged them (the good, bad and in-between)! We are also prideful fans of the best TV show ever, Friends! So naturally when we get together for any event we have to begin quoting our favorite lines in any movie or show that sticks out to us at any given moment in any conversion… all convos have free rein to bust a quote!

In an effort to include my fellow bloggers in family inside pleasantries, I wanted to let you in on one quote from a “must see” movie that the girl cousins have seen countless times and randomly quote.

Quotes from one favorite scene in Summer Magic:
Julia: Why yes, because of Charles.
Nancy: Oh, so it's "Charles" now, is it?
"Oh, Mr. Bryant. I couldn't hit your croquet ball."
"I'm too weak and dainty."
"But I might take a weensy push at Big Jim Jeffries-Nancy Carey's ball."
"Mercy! I only sent her 100 yards, but I couldn't hit you."
Nancy: Hilarious.
Julia: If you knew how you look pretending to be dumb.

So don’t be surprised if you ever visit a Hamilton/Bradford get together and someone interrupts your stories to say remember when in ____ movie when ____ character does _____ … or we’ll simply break out other rusty quotes before you can even finish your thought, like:
Whip crack away…
God Bless Kurt…
Like a glove…
Oh the fates…
Super cool party people bid ya super cool adieu!
…Um, ok. The fifth dentist caved and now they're all recommending Trident?
Should I use my invisibility to fight crime, or for evil?
“Should we all expect Christmas gifts that can be stolen from your office?” …”You shouldn't. “
“I figured after work, I'd pick up a bottle of wine, go over there, and try to... woo her.” “Hey, you know what you should do? Take her back to the 1800's when that phrase was last used.”
How do you not fall down more often?
Yeah. It's like a cow's opinion. It just doesn't matter. It's moo.
Are you actually saying these words?
“That's a great name... for an industrial solvent…”
“Rain? "Hi, my name is Rain. I have my own kiln and my dress is made out of wheat."” …“I know her!”
Oh, it's mine. I wrote a note to myself, and then I realized I didn't need, so I balled it up... And now I wish I was dead.
Well, I guess it wasn't Cupid that brought her here after all. No, just another regular flying dwarf.
Calli, Jen, Jess, Me, and Codie (Ashley isn't in this pic)

Hey Family, leave comments of some of our other quotes that I didn’t include… please keep them PG! :)

Wednesday, May 19

Hit and Giggle

I married a past UA pitcher who is very competitive! In our first year of marriage Jared really wanted us to play tennis together… let’s just say it wasn’t good for our marriage so we stopped.

A few weeks ago our CORE group met at the Mullen’s house where Mike and Jessa led us in questions of how we perceived what our marriage was going to be like before we were married and how it is now. We covered many questions but one thing that really stuck out to me was how I recalled Jared really wanting us to play tennis together and I have been fighting it for the 8 years we’ve been a couple. So, leaving CORE group that night I turned to Jared and let him know that we should start “trying” to play tennis together… his face lit up! :)

Yesterday was our first attempt in almost 6 years! We pulled up at the courts on the Trussville Mall and there were players on all four courts… I thought great witnesses! When a court was finally free and we started hitting I kept thinking: I’m so out of shape, I know my legs are jiggling like crazy, oops I hope no one saw that, my toes hurt, wow my legs hurt… then I asked how long have we been out here? Jared replied, 15 minutes! You’re doing way better then last time, I’ve started hitting it hard and you are actually hitting it back! I responded, I think I'm going to throw up!

Jared was good and patient teaching me, BABY STEPS! Like with the forearm I need to only use one hand to hit it and the backhand I hold it with two… we also covered some basics like tennis’s “line of scrimmage” is called a baseline, which makes since.

In short, my goal was to keep the ball in the fence but I failed! In the last 15 minutes I managed to hit two out of the fence, Jared had to retrieve.

I really had fun this time! I think it was mostly because we didn’t keep score, Papa calls it “hit and giggle,” as a competitor I’m sure this was hard for Jared but after almost 6 years of marriage he knows that this is the best way for me to start!

I’ve decided to blog about my tennis progress to keep me motivated so stay tuned maybe I can keep it up. :)

At least it was in the fence
I think I’m going to throw up
You have to pick up your feet
Can we let it bounce twice?
You were a lot worse last time
You’re doing good baby
You tricked me…

Tuesday, May 18

Black Jack Dies

I've been working with this stubborn horse for a little over a year and he died last week.

Papa got Black Jack with Red about two years ago. Black Jack had a great disposition except that he spooked easily and balked occasionally, which is why no one but me enjoyed riding him. I loved working on his gait!! The last time I rode him was 2 months ago and he could go from a saddle gait to a lope back to a saddle gait like changing gears in a car, fabulous! I'm really going to miss him! :'(

Jared riding Cisco and Me on Black Jack