Wednesday, December 21, 2011

This Just In..........

Howdy ya'll!
I have some blog ideas rolling around in my brain but have yet to actually blog them. Busy time of year!
You may have noticed a recent post about "The Art of Being Single."
As you may have guessed, I did not compose that particular blog entry. Since I am very happy with my Danny, I don't figure I should be writing about the single life!
My good friend Tracey is also a contributor to this blog. The name, in fact, was her idea. We started kicking around the idea of a blog several years ago. I put the blog up on the web and started blogging. Tracey wrote a hilarious blog way back when but we haven't heard much from her lately. I'm happy to say she's back to blogging and hopefully we'll be hearing lots from her!
***Any blog posted by Tracey will be followed by 'contributed by Tlynn4020.' Any blog posted by me will say 'contributed by RedDirtShayla.' I usually sign off with a 'Cheers, Shayla' as well.***
Thanks for reading and Happy Holidays!!!!


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Art of Being Single. 1st installment~Please to enjoy.

Relationships are fun aren't they? Well until they end. And they always do! It's happened to me so many times before that I'm starting to think maybe there's something wrong with me. Nahh. Couldn't be. What is the first thing you do when some one breaks up with you though? You ask that question don't you? You know the one... Was it me? Of course you get the standard (don't want to hurt your feelings) answer. "IT'S NOT YOU. IT'S ME"... Usually followed by a lame reason. "I'm confused". "I don't know what I want" "I'm a douchebag". (Well you're never lucky enough to get that kind of truth). Then it's the same inquisition thing. You just HAVE to know.. But he's not going to tell you really. So you do (well, I do) this thing.
Am I not attractive enough? ~ No, You're beautiful. I'm crazy attracted to you.
Is it the sex? ~ No!! The sex is amazing. Best I've ever had.
Didn't we get along well? My sense of humor? ~ No. We had a great time together. You are very funny.
So what you're really saying is that you want to be in a relationship with a humorless ugly bitch who is bad in bed? So you want your parent's marriage?
That's usually where it goes really wrong..
I'm bound and determined to get some honesty on the next breakup.. And there will be one. But this time it's going to be on my terms.. I am going to go totally batshit crazy. Like there will be no hiding the crazy kind of crazy. When he dumps me this time.. And it will happen. He will have no choice but to look deep into my eyes and say "it's not me. It's you, you crazy bitch!".. You're damned right it is!! Wait....
Another thought~
You can always tell a girl is single or happily married when you find a shit load of batteries in the bathroom drawers!! I hate it when a guy you're in a relationship with or that you're having sex with (can be mutually exclusive situations!) have an issue with you having "supplemental toys". They always say something stupid like "Now that you have me you don't need those things". I guess what you're saying is now that I have you I'm done having real orgasms? Great. Sounds good. Now if you will hand me two "AA"s I'll see ya in ten minutes Love. You think they would be relieved.It's like getting to have the girl without ever having to watch a Hugh Grant movie. All bang and no pressure to return the favor. Honestly a great toy drawer and a year's supply of batteries will last me like 3 months. You will always know when I don't have a vibrator. I will be looking for a boyfriend. Yep. That's the art of being single.

Friday, August 5, 2011

"Hey it's good to see ya baby, how long has it been?"

I still clearly remember the moment I learned one of my all-time favorite bands, The Great Divide, was breaking up and the immense sadness I felt.

I also clearly remember the moment I heard they were getting back together for a reunion show. Words couldn't begin to describe my joy!

A few nights ago, Danny was asking me about The Great Divide and why they were so special to me.

It goes without saying that I'm a huge fan of their music, lyrics and live shows. But I think for me, The Great Divide represents finding common ground. Let me explain......

Back in the fall of 1999, my younger sister Holly was attending West Texas A & M University in Canyon, TX. I invited her to Schreck's Ballroom in Foss, OK to check out a band out of Stillwater called The Great Divide.

At that time I was working on-air for KRPT radio in Anadarko, OK. I'd been hearing a lot about The Great Divide and had gone to see one of their shows at the Yukon High School auditorium. The opening act for the show was, at that time, a relatively unknown band. You've probably heard of them: Cross Canadian Ragweed. ;-)

After that first show I was hooked! I'd spent years spinning the current country hits on the radio and had found myself a bit bored with it all. This was something new and different and ORIGINAL. I'd been searching for something new musically, and I had finally found it!

I also found the members of the band to be quite genuine. They stayed after the show and signed autographs and took pictures with their fans. I gave lead singer Mike McClure a business card and told him to give me a call sometime and maybe we could set up and on-air interview. This was on a Saturday night. Monday morning he called me! I had given out many, many business cards at various concerts and events and no one was ever that prompt in returning a call! He showed a genuine appreciation that our station was playing his band's music. Years later, he would be instrumental in helping me launch my own Red Dirt/Texas music show called "The Skyline Radio Hour."

Needless to say, I was excited to share my new discovery with Holly! There is five and a half years age difference between me and my little sister. Growing up, I can safely say we didn't get along all that great! I'm sure Holly has many horror stories she can share with you about the abuse I put her through as a kid! We seems to constantly be a odds with one another and I picked on her incessantly. However, we always shared a deep connection and would go to battle for one another in a heartbeat! Holly was in her first year of college and I guess I felt like we could go out and do 'adult' things together so I invited her to Oklahoma to party with me and my friends!

On that fall night back in 1999, in a huge dance hall out in the middle of western Oklahoma, it seemed Holly and I finally found a piece of common ground we could stand on. That night seemed to be the jumping off point for the great relationship Holly and I share today. I couldn't even begin to tell you how many Great Divide shows we've seen or the miles we travelled to see them play. For the first time, we really shared a common interest. In this music, we found something we could both be passionate about.

In another odd twist of fate, Holly would eventually meet and marry the guy running sound for The Great Divide, Jimmy Hamilton!! In 2003, we met him at the Deli when he was running sound for The Mike McClure band after The Great Divide had split!

We're also still proud to call Mike a friend. I know the split from the band was not a pleasant one and there were many years of resentment that followed. The fact that these four men were able to put the past aside and come back together after so many years is quite a testament. Mike has gotten sober and it seems to have made a real difference in his life. I'm sure he's a better husband, father, son, friend and band mate because of it.

Those years following The Great Divide around were some of the best years of my life! I never thought a reunion would be possible, yet here it is, less than a month away! I'm so excited and I can't wait to share the music with Danny. He's quite curious as to what all the fuss is about!

I know there are hundreds and hundreds of fans just like Holly and I who are looking forward to August 26th with great anticipation. And maybe with a little luck, we'll recapture a little bit of that 'ol college days spirit in the process.



Monday, May 9, 2011

Dear Malcolm

Dear Malcolm,

You left this world two weeks ago. Sometimes I wonder if my mind has really registered that this really happened to us.

I'm angry.

I'm sad.

I'm tired.

Sometimes I'm worried that I'm not sad enough but then sometimes it overwhelms me.

I'm worried for my family. I know Holly is sad but it's more of a silent sadness. Mom and Heath can't hide it. It's so visible in their eyes that's it's all I can see when I look at them. I can literally feel their broken hearts.

As for me, I have to say I have some regrets where you and I are concerned. I can't believe I'm writing this but I feel there are some things I need to say. On certain occasions I know I shared with you how I felt about you.

Did you really hear me?

Did you really know how I felt?

Before you died, you told Mom that you wanted to call all of us kids and let us know you loved us. She said 'they know that' and you said 'Shayla doesn't.' To hear that was quite a blow.

I need to say this, before God and everyone, I knew from the very beginning that you loved me!

You met my Mom after she'd had some really hard times. Some things are meant to be, and you and her were definitely meant to be. I remember those early days of travelling to Walsh to visit you on the farm. I just thought you were so cool! You had a three-wheeler, horses, cattle. I loved working the cattle.

After you and Mom married I discovered I wasn't much into the farming part of farming and ranching. I also discovered I wasn't much on someone other than my Mom telling me what to do. But you took on the role of father to us and you demanded respect. You also demanded that we respect our Mother. Lessons learned.

At that point in my life, my love was rodeo. A hard week of work on the farm was paid off on the weekend with a barrel racing jackpot or a rodeo. You made sure we each had a reliable horse as well as a pick-up and trailer to travel in.

You and I butted heads sometimes. I was used to it being me, Mom and Holly. I was stubborn and strong willed. I guess you were, too because you didn't give up on me.

I called you when Annette died and I told you what you meant to me. I hope you remember that conversation.

I never called you Dad but I hope you know I considered you my Dad. I just never felt right about taking that title away from my own father. My parents divorced when I was fairly young but I've always had a good relationship with my Dad. He has always been and always will be a part of my life. My Mom never spoke negatively about him to Holly or I. I just feel so lucky that I am able to say I had two wonderful fathers when most people are fortunate to just have one.

The selfish part of me is feeling a bit cheated right now. You're not going to be there when Danny and I get married and have kids. You're not going to be there for the birth of Heath and Amy's child. You're not going to live in Oklahoma like we planned.

I am thankful you got to know your first grandchild Olivia. Just this weekend, Mom asked her if she was Mimi's girl and she replied, 'Papa's peanut.' Beautiful and heart wrenching all at the same time.

When I headed out for the hospital in Amarillo two weeks ago I thought in a couple of days I'd be returning home. Never in my wildest dreams would I have ever imagined that that we'd be having your funeral the next week.

It's not fair.

It wasn't supposed to end like this.

We miss you.

I hope you know how much I loved you and appreciated all you did for me.

Even if I didn't always show it, I had the utmost respect for you.

Rest in peace Malcolm.



Wednesday, January 5, 2011

I heart New York.

“One belongs to New York instantly, one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years” ~ Thomas Wolfe

At the time of my last blog, Danny and I were about to embark on our adventure in New York City. Well, here it is January and I'm just now getting around to an update!

As I feared would happen, I fell in love with NYC! I dreaded leaving. I instantly longed to go back. I dream about her still. I think I may need to see a doctor.

After coming home, I was particularly struck by the above quote by Thomas Wolfe. Many paint New York as a cold and uncaring city. I didn't see it that way at all.
The city streets hum with an energy you can feel night and day. Except for a few rude cab drivers the people were friendly and helpful. As I stood in the shadows of her skyscrapers, I still couldn't believe I was really there. You see these images on TV and in books and movies, yet here you are seeing them with your own eyes! It was a trip I'll never forget and I can't wait to go back!

Here's a few pictures I took in the city. Thanks to my sister Holly for helping with the editing process!

After checking into our hotel, we set out on foot to see the Brooklyn Bridge. It's one of the oldest suspension bridges in the US. Construction on the bridge began on January 3, 1870 and it opened for use on May 24, 1883. It spans the East River connecting the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Looking back towards Manhattan from the Brooklyn Bridge you can see the Statue of Liberty.

I love this picture of the Manhattan Bridge because you can see the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building in the background! Obviously, that's the Empire State Building there in the center. Off to the right you'll see the Chrysler Building. The Manhattan is also a beautiful bridge in her own right.

On my my favorite pictures from the weekend. This is the Brooklyn Bridge at night as seen from the South Street Seaport. Absolutely stunning!

You gotta get some pizza at Grimaldi's in Brooklyn! Pies are baked in a coal-fired brick oven. They were chosen as one of the five best pizzerias in the US by the Food Network. Long, long lines to get in but worth the wait!

As you can tell, Danny enjoyed it!

Ah Central Park! I wish we had devoted an entire day to the park. It was absolutely beautiful. We took a pedi-cab tour of the park and learned a lot. The above picture is the twin towers of the San Remo building on Central Park West as seen from Central Park.

This is The Boathouse on Central Park Lake. Sex and the City fans might recognize this as the place where Carrie met Big for lunch......and an unintentional swim!

Obviously a stop at Strawberry Fields is a must for all Beatles fans. The Imagine memorial is quite moving.

Another important site for Beatles fans is the Dakota Building on 72nd Street and Central Park West. Built between 1880 and 1884, it is believed to have been given it's name because the upper west side of Manhattan seemed, at that time, to be as remote as the Dakota Territory.

The Dakota is most famous for being the site of John Lennon's murder on December 8, 1980. The Lennon's had spent several hours at The Recording Plant before returning home to the Dakota around 10:50pm. He was shot by Mark David Chapman, a "fan" to whom Lennon had given an autograph to earlier in the day. Lennon staggered up five steps just inside the doorway of the Dakota and collapsed. John Lennon was pronounced dead on arrival at Roosevelt Hospital emergency room at 11:15pm.

One of many open markets in Chinatown.

Well, I hope you've enjoyed the pictures. These are just a few. I took hundreds and could have taken hundreds more! If you ever get the chance to visit New York City I highly, highly recommend it! In fact, if you paid my way, I'd be more than willing to tag along with you! ;-)



Monday, November 8, 2010

Gonna take a bite out of the Big Apple!

Well, it's finally here.

The week I've been waiting for! Danny and I are going to New York City Thursday morning! I'm so very, very excited for this trip!!

During hurricane season, Danny drove to Long Island for a hurricane that never really hit. They basically drove to the tip of Long Island then turned around and drove back home. Unbeknownst to me, he did some snooping around while he was there and shortly there after I received an email from AAA Travel letting me know we were going to the Big Apple!!

My Danny is full of surprises. :-)

For many years now I've wanted to visit NYC. Being a long time Billy Joel fan, I long to see all the places he sings about.

And this may sound a bit silly, but after watching every episode and both Sex and the City movies, I want to soak up the sights I've seen through the eyes of Carrie, Miranda, Samantha and Charlotte!

Danny is making this dream come true for me this week!

We're staying at the Millennium Hilton right across the street from the World Trade Center site. I've been reading a lot about New York trying to figure out the best was to see all I want to see in the most efficient manner. I think we've come to the conclusion that it may be best to just take off walking and see what we see!

Last week my Reckless Kelly newsletter arrived in my inbox. To my surprise, I discovered they are playing at Terminal 5, an NYC club, the night we arrive! I went to the club's website and much to my surprise Robert Earl Keen is the show's headliner!!! Those who know me know I LOVE REK. I have seen him many, many different times in many different locations. Words can't describe the feeling of knowing I'm going to witness him playing a show in New York City!!! Plus, this is Danny's first REK show!

Wow, what a memory this is going to be! Hurry up Thursday!!!!


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Silly Val!

Meet Val. This is Danny's dog. We brought her down from Kellyville to live with us. She's a funny gal!

Yesterday Danny installed a pet door for my little rat terrier Tai. She really enjoys digging out of the backyard and running around Chickasha. This, in turn, throws me into a tizzy until I find her and get her back home! Somedays I'm so aggravated when she gets out that I'm tempted to let her go but in the end I'm all talk. After 11 years I just can't stand the thought of losing her. Anyway, we decided that if she wasn't forced to stay in the backyard and could come and go as she pleased, she might be less likely to dig out of the yard.

Once Danny got the pet door installed, I was watching Tai go in and out. Suddenly a big black snout poked through the pet door. I told Danny that Val would probably try and shove her big noggin through the pet door.

This morning when I went and peeked into the laundry room to see if Tai was in or out I saw Val's collar on the floor! Just as I predicted, at some time in the night she poked her head through the pet door!

We both got a good laugh out of that one! These darn animals drive me nuts most of the time, but I can't imagine life without them! Hope your animal kingdom is as entertaining as ours!