Letters to Ava-Friends

I come up with these letters to you from my own experiences usually what I am going through at that time in life. This is a biggy and will probably be another part to it some other time, but for now here it is from your aunt.

You will go through many times in your life where friends come and go. There are certainly those who will stay in your life and never go anywhere, but there are those who you think would not go anywhere and they magically disappear. Here is my advice for when that happens.

  1. It sucks so yell, cry and bitch all you want, seriously it doesn’t make you pathetic it makes you a passionate, loyal, and good friend. It will suck for a long time even years later it may sting a little when a little memory pops into your head. Luckily this is something that won’t kill you, only feels like it will. However, you have your mom and me to get you through and you have real friends to help you through it all.
  2. If it is a guy friend who you lost- Keep your girlfriends close, those ladies are the ones who will open up some wine with you, watch sappy movies, cry with you, and eat junk food. They are lifesavers, find those two ladies who are amazing like that and you will be set.
  3. If it is a girl friend who you lost- Guy friends and girl friends are good for this, I have learned that when you lose a girl friend, making new memories is the best way to go. Losing a close girl friend is something that will never completely leave you, because that is someone who probably knows your inner darkest secrets and so it is going to hit you hard.
  4. Bottom line- You never let this make you hard or cold hearted, you always stay loving no matter what. You can learn from this experience, but it is important to take your guard down when it is time to make new memories and welcome new best friends. You really cannot plan for anything like this and you cannot plan for how you are going to feel. You can plan for how you will act no matter what happens, you should always be a loyal and true friend who loves everyone, but loves herself the most. Don’t ever lose sight of those friends who have been with you while you sort through all the duds of the world. Don’t you ever bash anyone on social media or talk down about them, each of us go through our own struggles and we never know what others are going through so you keep your head up and know that if someone is meant to be in your life, they will be there.

I love you!

Letter to Ava- Working out/being healthy

Okay niece Ava, this is a tricky one. You come from a family that has always been pretty healthy, none of us are overly obese, we don’t eat McDonalds every day 3x a day, we get plenty of physical activity in one way or another. I think you have good genes to be pretty healthy, however, I want you to know a few things.

  • It all starts when you are younger. Your mom, dad, grandparents and myself will make sure that you are healthy. We won’t withhold ice cream or cookies from you, but you will not be allowed to eat that for breakfast, lunch and dinner (you can do that when you are older, like I did)
  • I am hoping that you will get your dads athletic ability and play some kind of sport so you will be physically active throughout your life and learn that it REALLY is a great thing.
  • If you come work on the farm and ranch often you will get a ton of physical activity, pounding posts, hauling hay, or chasing cows. You can skip your daily workouts when on the Farm.
  • In College- HAVE FUN! If you don’t want to go workout, the glorious part of college is you don’t have to go workout. Aunt Lisa got a little burned out on exercise in high school when it came to college, I ate what I wanted, drank what I wanted, and ultimately did what I wanted. I did gain weight, but nothing to the point of putting myself in serious jeopardy.
  • Boys- Yes, they suck and they want unrealistic things in a woman’s physique, big boobs, big butt, tiny waste and toned legs… Oh please, you have to be a genetic goddess to look like that. What I am saying is don’t listen to any male when it comes to your body. I want you to feel good about yourself and if you don’t like what you see then you change it for you and not for anyone else, especially a boy. A man who loves you, will love you for who you are inside and out and wouldn’t change a thing about you, period!
    • Your Aunt Lisa is 24 currently and still working on this concept, it does take time, but hopefully I can tell you enough so it won’t take you as long.

Love you Always and Forever,

Aunt Lisa

 

Soulmate Hack 3.0- Pray, Hope, Dream…

The right man for you will move mountains to be with you, he won’t hide behind them.

My Dearest Mr.,

Love is a funny thing, we both know this, I also have a feeling you have been in love before and so have I. There is nothing wrong with this, I do pray that the loves you had in your life before me treated you right and with respect, love and passion you deserve. I hope you never were hurt for loving the wrong person and anytime you felt an emptiness that you have faith there is something better that God has chosen for you. I hope you and the other loves called it off because you both knew there was something better waiting for them. I dream I am that something better for you.

I pray I have the courage to walk away from the loves that are not for me. I pray to have faith that you are out there preparing for our lives together.

It’s OK!

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Single is almost like a bad word these days and there are so many traits that a single gal ‘should’ have in order to live a great life as a single woman. I’m here to be real, you will get advise from married folks, old and young, newly minted relationships and other singles and you will get different advise from each one. I am completely guilty of not being honest with myself about so many things in life especially in the man department. So I am here to say that it is totally ok to do these activities that others will frown upon and they will tell you to stop.

  • It’s ok to throw a temper tantrum, yes, I said it get on the floor (I find that my bed is much more comfortable) and kick, scream, cry and yell obscenities that would make your grandma and mom beat you. Cuss the dude or gal out, yell out why the hell you are feeling the way you are even if you don’t know.
  • It’s ok to feel completely useless
  • It’s ok to be negative about life and relationships
  • It’s ok to be a bitch
  • It’s ok to hate the opposite sex, hell it’s ok to hate anyone
  • It’s ok to drink a bottle of wine by yourself- disclaimer on this would be that the next day may suck even worse.
  • It’s ok to watch sad movies or listen to depressing music

It is ok for you to do all of the above and more, whatever you are going through, you must find a way to get through it, even if it is unconventional. You don’t have to be strong all the time, so go on and feel sorry for yourself, but don’t let the above become a habit. You know what makes it all better, so do it. Different situations take different lengths of time to cope with and that is ok, but when you start feeling better, it’s ok to embrace that as well.

More than just driving a tractor…

Lately, I have been have a personal issue of “future planning”. In the world of academia, you are a pee on if you do not have a PhD. Do I agree with it? Well no I don’t, but I understand their reasoning and it is something I am having to put into my future plans.

So Dr. Mitchell in the future? I can honestly say that I have no idea. However, there are many instances that make me say hell no. One is the attitude of those who are in the profession and how they react to industry of Agriculture. If I were to go to my Dean and tell him that I wanted a PhD in Agriculture or quit the academics world and start a job in the Ag industry, like what I grew up with and learned to love and respect, he would laugh in my face. One of the funniest statements I have heard from people when looking at doing a PhD:

  • It is really hard. Really??? Do you really think I would be looking into this with the mindset that it will be an easy road?  AGRICULTURE taught me a thing called work ethic.

Agriculturists are looked down on everyday of their lives, by ignorant individuals who claim they know everything, when in reality they wouldn’t last 1 hour on the farm. It is not just physical labor or just the “luck” of having a green thumb. Farming and Ranching is a financial obligation that takes a ton of planning and a very strong stomach, because our investments are our lives, our kid’s lives and the your life as well. If a farm goes down and can’t produce or our cattle herd becomes non-existent that is not only hurting us as farmers, it is hurting the whole world (no exaggeration).

What do I get out of this burning feeling inside of me? A few things:

  • Don’t ever look down on someone for what they do. Praise them for working and helping themselves, if they don’t like their career path, be an encouragement to try to get them closer to their passion.
  • Try your hardest to ignore the ignorant or jealous individuals who try to bring you down for what you do. You are pursuing your passion and I promise you were made to do your passion, nobody else can do it as well as you can. Big deal you aren’t making as much as you could in a job you hate, but you are smart and you will make it all work out.
  • Constantly support your local farmers and ranchers. Never underestimate someone who can do about 12 jobs within one and rely on mother nature and the government to make sure they get paid.

May God Bless all Agriculturists, because through all the crap we go through, the one constant that we can count on is Him!

Crossfit Envy

I have joined in on many fads in my workout routine. Like my life I need to be presented with a new challenge constantly or I become bored and ultimately unproductive. I started with Zumba, once I realized that I did this everyday in my apartment it honestly just seemed pointless to spend money on doing it anymore. I moved to yoga, many different kinds, Hot, Vinyasa, and Slow Flow, I still love yoga and will keep it in my routine as much as possible. I did one day of kickboxing and I am learning that any choreographed workouts are not for me. I just recently got into Crossfit and I have a love hate relationship with it so far.

I love the work that you put in, I wanted something faster paced, sweatier, and something where I remember my high school days of not being able to move after the first few week’s of practice. It is just confirmation that you are doing something right.

I actually love burpees, sit ups, box jumps, squats, planks and push ups now… I know it’s crazy, but honestly if you just learn to love the results you get from these things, you learn to love them.

I hate lifting, I am a strong person I mean I worked on a farm and ranch my whole life and it was no big deal to lift a 500lb tub out of the back of a truck, pull an 80lb calf, hold onto a 1500lb show steer, or hold a 2 ton tractor tire up on a 2 by 4 so you can put it on the tractor. Also, none of this ever scared me, but the fact of having a 45lb or above bar over my head and squatting scares the shit out of me. I mean, my legs could buckle and the bar falls on my head and I’m a vegetable for life or falls on my leg and breaks my leg. ( I never thought of these types of consequences on the farm, where they were more likely to happen mind you.)

I hate being hurt. Through the years of showing, playing basketball, and now working out, my biggest fear is getting hurt to where I couldn’t do what I wanted. I recently pulled a muscle in my lower back while doing Crossfit- as a side note: I believe it was karma for putting off yoga for the 8 weeks that I was so infatuated with Crossfit, the yoga Gods are spiteful ya’ll, be careful.

If you have ever experienced back pain you realize that it is a painful and humbling experience. When it happened, my neighbor picked me up on his back and carried me up the stairs to my apartment, he then witnessed me crying in pain many times and having my breath taken away if I moved wrong in bed. I had to have help getting out of clothes, into clothes, showering and even getting off the toilet. This was a whole new pain and I have never been so inclined to get better and build my lower core and back strength and take care of myself than I am now. I am still sore and get stiff, but many I am way better than I was. I think it hurt my pride more than anything, in the back of my mind the whole time I could hear my dad and mom with their words of compassion I heard my whole life: “It’s a long way from your heart.” “You’ll be fine” “Oh, I think we have something in my vet bag or vaccination fridge that will take care of that” “I’ll just pop that right back into place” and my favorite “Just eat something and get some fresh air and you will feel better.”

I am ready to get active again, but not ready to make anything worse so I am being patient and working out slowly at home. Not giving up, just getting very impatient!

Wedding Bliss

Last week (August 1, 2015), I had the great pleasure to attend two friend’s wedding to each other. I grew up with both of them and graduated with the groom. I have been to many weddings and have loved each for their own special reasons, however, I must say that this one will be hard to top, not because of the location, venue, or the type of cake (in this case they had a bazillion pies…It was amazing!), but for the company. I got the hang out and spend time with some of the most special people in my life. I loved getting to see all of my past San Jon alums, their families and reminse about old times and hear about current times. Makes me so proud of each of them and so proud of my small town.

On another note I took a wedding ‘virgin’ to his first wedding this go around and I must say, I think he had a great time. Neighbor had a lot of firsts during this time and I was so happy to have experienced them with him. I can honestly say that we have not laughed and had so many heart to hearts in a long time. Here are some firsts that Neighbor experienced and also some learning experiences from me traveling with neighbor…

Neighbor firsts

    • First time in New Mexico- The wedding took place in Springer, New Mexico, so northern New Mexico. LOTS of wide open spaces with beautiful scenery especially with all the great rain we have gotten lately.
    • First wedding- I think I picked a good one for him to attend, and all the things that neighbor loves was there: BBQ, Pie, and games. (He loves food…)
    • First time two stepping- That’s right I drug him out and taught him how to dance, because that is what I do ya’ll! He got the hang of it by the end of the night, beer helps in the dancing process as well 😉

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  • Small town experience- I gave neighbor a tour of San Jon, all 3 minutes, but a special 3 minutes and he was very impressed that we even functioned.
  • Rain clouds- “Lisa, look at those clouds they look like rain” Me: “That is rain…” He has never seen rain clouds before 🙂
  • Beer Drunk- For hicks this is a daily thing, but for someone who hardly ever drinks beer, this was a first and he paid for it on the way home, I will always remember the spot where I pulled over for him to throw up.

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Lisa learned:

    • Road trips with neighbor through lots of wide open space is a bad idea… 7 hour round trip and neighbor slept for about 5 of those hours.

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    • When your passenger, especially if it is your neighbor/best friend says `dip`…slow the f@#* down. If you don’t, you and your passenger will hit your heads on the roof of the car and everything within your car will get very discombobulated. We didn’t spill the beer…number one priority of course.
    • I have the best friends and I grew up in a not so “normal” small town environment. Everyone was extremely friendly to neighbor and really loved him from the start.
    • Being best friends with your spouse is so important, I know the love between Jenn and Bobby is so pure and special, they will spend many years together 🙂

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Soulmate Hack 2.0- A little bit of a ‘tude

My dearest Mr,

I’m a woman, not a girl, a woman. I work for a living, take care of myself and don’t except help. I expect you to be a man and let me know that I deserve to be taken care of and I may need help from time to time. I go through that time of the month when I have a horrible attitude. I will yell at you at one point then apologize the next day when my hormones are on a lower level.

I hope you do not expect someone to be happy all the time or exactly the most positive person, but I hope you know that no matter what I will take care of you and love you through all of your crazy, so I really expect the same. I pray for you to be my best friend and never leave my side, even when it would be understandable to leave.

How do I still have my toes?

This past weekend I made the 100 mile drive home to the Mitchell Farm and Ranch. I usually leave to go home right after work which puts me at my parents house right in time for chore time, perfect timing my parents may say, but I also get home right in time for dinner as well so it is truly a win win.

I pulled into the yard was greeted by Izzy, our vicious guard dog (not really, she is totally harmless). She showed me to the door and waited patiently for a pat on the head as I walked up the steps to go inside. I immediately got turned around and my dad, mom and I packed into the truck and drove to the barn to get grain. My dad has been discing up fields and planting for the past few weeks, but it has been a hard road because for once we have gotten a ton of rain. By the way we will never complain about that, we will put off planting as long as it rains.

Our old tractor has dual set of tires and it had the duals (then second set of tires) taken off, dad decided that we had better put those back on so he could pull the disc a little more easily. If you have never taken off and put duals on a tractor, I will tell you now that it is a pain in the ass, however once you get the hang of it, it gets to be one of those fun farming activities that you just get done as quick and painless as possible. These duals weigh about 1000 pounds a piece and myself and my dad constantly deal with them just the two of us.

I have always thought of myself as a very risk adverse person and I usually try to be very careful in all situations. However, while helping my dad with these 1000 pound tires I realized that I wear the same shoes many times out on the farm and ranch, flip flops. No I don’t gather or work cows or walk around in the fields in flimsy Old Navy flip flops, but I do wear them while doing random jobs. I started to think, how the hell do I still have all 10 of my toes and toe nails? I remember very clearly wearing flip flops while handling 1500 pound steers, showing sheep and working with pigs. I do remember being stepped on numerous times and I know it hurt like hell, but I kept doing it. I guess that is my risky business that I do, I live on the edge with the fact that my toes could be smooshed or cut off in a split second. I do not suggest wearing that time of clothing if you are planning to work on the Farm, but always do as I say not as I do.

I survived one more year…let’s celebrate!

Today is the day, the day I turn 24, the day I plan to breath, live, and smile more for the rest of my days. Speaking of planning, many of you know that I will be  participating in a 25 by 25 “to do list” this year. I’m super excited to get started…well I kind of already started, but it’s my list so I do what I want 😉

Here they are in no particular order.

  1. Get Published
  2. Go to Chicago for St. Patrick’s Day
  3. Run a 5K (This should really just be ‘participate in a 5K’, because there is no way in hell I will be running a full 5K)
  4. Year long of workout challenges- Thanks to Pinterest
  5. Read 6 books- I am in need of good suggestions as well. 🙂
  6. Blog once a month
  7. Go to a drive-in movie
  8. 12 new recipes
  9. Open a Roth IRA
  10. Volunteer at least 20 hours
  11. Send 12 ‘just because’ notes
  12. Weekend with my mom and sister
  13. Yoga class with my sister
  14. Be my daddy’s shadow for a day
  15. Write out a budget every month
  16. Take a guy on a “date”
  17. Explore a new city in all of it’s wonder
  18. Go to a strip club
  19. Go to 4 corners
  20. Go to an all black church
  21. Get a palm reading
  22. Call/Skype/email 6 friends I don’t talk to often
  23. Donate blood
  24. Hike the lighthouse trail at Palo Duro Canyon
  25. A full day described in pictures

I invite everyone to join in with me if you want or just watch it all play out.

Questions that need answers:

  • Which one will be the hardest? The 5K, for sure, unless there is chocolate or beer at the finish line…then that one may be done numerous times.
  • Which one are you the most excited about? I created this list, because I was excited about all of the items, but the one I am most excited about is my weekend with my mom and sister, we always have the best time when we are together.
  • Which one are you most fearful? Giving blood. I’m deathly afraid of needles and I get anxiety every time there is the possibility of one going into my skin.