Loving Like There's No Tomorrow
The 4 B's ~ Established 17 November 2001

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Brailey's Trip of a Lifetime - Family Texas Style

To say Brailey had a good time in Texas is possibly the understatement of a LIFETIME! She not only had fun, she met family she had been waiting to meet her whole life, and the bonds they formed will never be broken, I am sure. It couldn't have been more special! Texas hospitality is in a class all its own, and they showed Brailey a truly fabulous time! Above, her first ride on an airplane. She flew down with Gramma Diggy, and they had a great flight. These are pictures she took - she did way more than she could even manage to get pictures of! Like she rode a REAL cutting horse and worked the flag AND live cattle! She went shopping. She learned some delicious new recipes. She enjoyed several world class snow cones and lots of delicious ice cream. She went to a beauty pageant. She saw a movie at the Omni Theatre. She experienced her first 4th of July away from home! Below, the gorgeous sign welcoming people to the ranch. Frank is Brady's oldest sister's husband, and he is a living legend! As far as horsemen go, according to Diana Murray (Brady's mom), there are only a handful of people as handy as Frank Craighead. He is our hero!
Brailey's oldest cousin, Codie, is the mother of the adorable little girl in the picture above - her name is Preslie, and she was attached at the hip with Brailey the entire time. They had a big time together! She is six, going on seven in August.
The World Famous Chris Cox lives just down the road from the Craigheads. Brady's sister, Cindy, decorated his bunkhouses. She is an amazing decorator! She and her daughter Candice have an amazing mobile booth they take to different shows and sell some really incredible merchandise out of. Brailey was in heaven learning all about it!
Snow cone tongue... And blue teeth, too! They were from The Funky Munky, and according to Brailey, they were the most delicious snow cones ever to be invented on Planet Earth!
One of the main highlights was a trip to Billy Bob's to see Merle Haggard in concert. Brailey was so thrilled to see him! Brady is a huge fan, and so we listen to a lot of The Hag. Brailey was thrilled to see him and the entire Billy Bob's establishment!
She is her Daddy's Girl all the way, posing by the Montana Silversmiths case and then sending this picture to Brady - he loved it!
On another day, they went to Splash Kingdom and Six Flags. Brailey experienced her first sunburn ever on this day, and even peeled! She applied sunscreen twice and still burned, but guess what? She's still a brown little bear! Her cousin Candice, pictured above, took her and Preslie on these adventures.
On yet another day, they went to the Fossil Rim Wildlife Center. This was a huge hit, as well! The giraffes were super friendly. Diana loves them, and it was mesmerizing for her to have them eating right out of her hand! One of the highlights of this particular adventure was when one of the animals drooled on Codie's lap! Apparently, the animals stick their heads right inside the cars. FUN!
They drink a lot of sweet tea in Texas! Uncle Frank has a special ice tea maker, and he is the head sweet tea brewer. However, sweet tea from Sonic is the favorite, and several trips were made there in order to get their special sweet tea blend. Brailey tried three different kinds, but didn't fancy them. I think they were in a fun place with fake food...?
The beautiful Candice, above, and below, appliance shopping with Codie! She is the lady behind Diana in the hat and coral colored shirt. Codie and her husband Casey just bought a new ranch, and so they were fixing the house up and moving into it while Brailey was there. And buying appliances!
The gorgeous Candice - she was so sweet to Brailey (as was EVERYONE!) and shared her room. They slept together every night, which was really fun for Brailey.
Another exciting occurrence was Codie's birthday! Brailey was so happy to be there to help celebrate with delicious cake and ice cream. She's never been able to celebrate any of her cousin's birthdays, so it was very special for Brailey to experience. She loves Codie and Candice both and was so happy to be with them!
Near the end of the trip, they went to the horse races! Brailey took more pictures of this than anything - she loved seeing these race horses run! They ran on both grass and dirt.
Aunt Cindy and Candice's Lucky Ranch Style trailer and some of the goods to be loaded into it. Brailey came home more inspired to craft and make things than it is possible for her family to keep up with! After spending time with Aunt Cindy, she has a million things she wants to make. 
Codie took this picture of Diana and one of their babies. I think it needs to be entered in a contest! I LOVE this picture! Diana looks so beautiful, the baby is adorable and you can see the mare in the background... I love it so much - GORGEOUS! Some of the other babies below. Brailey came home wanting to find a job so she can buy a baby horse!
Three weeks flew by, and she was on her way home. Below, Brady and Britt anxiously awaiting her arrival in baggage claim. We barely made it on time, due to some bad traffic, but we go there with five minutes to spare. 
And there she was! Home, safe and sound with her beloved and favorite uncle, Frank. He is such a gentleman, he walked her to baggage claim, even though he had to go through security to catch his next flight to Redmond. It was a bumpy flight from Texas, and Brailey was glad Uncle Frank was with her!
And we were thrilled to see Uncle Frank and to spend some time with him on Thursday when we delivered a case to Big R in Redmond! We got to hear even MORE stories, which was super fun to listen to. Brailey didn't come home with a twang, but she did pick up a new habit her dad and I are loving - every question we ask her is now answered, "Yes Sir." or "No Sir." or "Yes Mam" or "No Mam." Texas hospitality and manners - like no other place on earth! OH! And while she was there, she didn't get homesick even one time! Can you believe it?! Her family in Oregon, however, was very Braileysick. In fact, she loved it down there so much, she found a ranch for us to buy so we can move down there! Ha! She also designed her own room in Aunt Cindy's house, including a closet. I think it is safe to say that this was the first of many trips for Brailey to Texas. She loved every single second she was there! The best part of the trip was the love that was given - they may live in Texas, but the bonds of family love are stronger than ever, and we love them all! The fact she was able to go with Gramma Diggy was the icing on the cake. It was the trip of a lifetime, no doubt about it!

Friday, July 18, 2014

The Great Crash

It has been almost two weeks since it happened, "it" being The Great Crash. The Great Crash, if you haven't heard, was when a rodeo queen missed the out gate by about twenty feet on her runaway horse at the start of the bull riding Brady was judging over the 4th of July weekend and ran over him. From what people who witnessed it have told me, we are lucky it wasn't worse. We would love to be depressed and angry, but that's just not the way we roll. (Mostly, we have been "rolling" along in a wheelchair!) Sure, it has put a crink in our summer. Yes, it has caused some worry. Brady was just ready to start roping on his mare that he loves so much, and he was also going to teach Brailey how to rope. His new Christmas product for Montana Silversmiths came out the week before the accident, one of his busiest times of year for selling. We were going to go on a rafting trip. In fact, we had lots and lots of "things" we were going to do. But guess what? We are so grateful and blessed he came out of the wreck with a broken leg and that he is still HERE with us. Granted, it is a bad break - it is a crush break, which is worse than a clean break. Both his tibia and fibula at the knee were crushed into pieces. So far, though, they are all in place and surgery won't be necessary. We will know more as time goes on, but things are looking good! It will take a long time for it to heal, but you just can't keep a good man down, and that goes for mind, body and heart - Brady's fighting spirit will see him through. In fact, that is part of the battle, with him - keeping him down so he can get well! As you will  see from the pictures, he still has things to do and places to go. In the picture above, he and Britt managed to get in a little snuggle time - they just had to be more creative than usual.
At the airport, waiting for Brailey to meet us in baggage claim. We hit the jackpot and found a close parking place right next to the wheelchairs! It was perfect.
Uncle Frank escorted Brailey all the way there, even though he had to go back through security to catch his second flight. It was so great to see them!
Sitting outside for a bit, watching his B's.
He had a new store open in Corvallis, and had all their pedestals for the new case. I drove him to the store and helped him set everything out. It was all fine and dandy!
 He figured out how to navigate on the 4-wheeler so he could watch us ride our horses one evening.
Yesterday, we drove to Redmond to deliver a case to the Big R over there. The day before, Brady supervised the little B's and I as we cleaned it and loaded it into the pickup (we are talking a huge display case that took up the entire bed of our pickup - super heavy!). The crew at Big R helped us unload it and set it up in the store. It was a lot for Brady, but he survived. The best part of the day was seeing Uncle Frank, who was out at the Brasada Ranch for a cutting he is judging there. We met him for lunch, and then went to his cabin for Brady to put his leg up and even managed to get some ice on it. It was so much fun to see Frank! We love him so much, and loved every second of seeing him.
Today? Brady is attending a sales meeting via the internet. He was supposed to be in Las Vegas, but he is participating online, since he isn't allowed to fly. So we improvised! It will be a long, slow road road of recovery, but we are taking it one day at a time. Thank you all for your prayers and offers of help. We are so thankful and send all our prayers and love and hugs right back to you!

Monday, July 7, 2014

4th of July in Pendleton

Some would say they were "footloose and fancy free," but Brady and I were kidless and lonley last week. HOWEVER, we still managed to have a great time in Pendleton over the 4th of July weekend. How can anyone NOT have fun in Let'er Buckville?! Here are some fun pictures from our adventure.
Above, our dear friend Cody Ford. I got to meet his fiance, Elyse, and she is wonderful! (I'm in love with her, too, Cody!) Below is the PBR super star, Ben Jones - sadly, he was seriously injured on the first night of the show (2 day event). My niece works in the ER at the hospital in Pendleton, and she assisted him when he came in. She said it was a busy, exciting night of work!
I love how patriotic cowboys are - an example to all of us!

Cody riding his bull the first night. He didn't make the whistle, darn it, but I still think this is a good picture. He's always a rock star in our books!
On the actual 4th of July, Brady and I got up early after a very late night (he had to do the draw after the first perf) and ran the Let'er Buck 5K. It was so much fun! Brady was a CHAMPION! He won third in his age group. Me? I didn't place, but I ran a personal best and loved every second of it. I can't wait for next year!
 Celebrating our finish - we did it!
Brady was so surprised to have won a medal! It was great!
Look at that smile... After he finished this race, he said he is now retired. Ha!
The parade was impressive, as always. We could see it from our motel - here is the end of the Mounted Let'er Buck Band. They actually play their instruments off their horses and sound fantastic. I love it!
Poor little doggie...
The handsome PBR judge - and the "Champion Runner!"
Cody was one of the main attractions of the show on the 4th, so he got a special introduction. He's a cool cat, that one.
A beautiful sight to behold - Old Glory. And below, they had a super fun, really cute and very nicely executed Flash/Mob Dance. They taught the clown right before the show, and he had the moves down perfectly. It was really good! All in all, it was a great week full of lots of fun, even though we did really miss our babies. They were having their own fun, but they both said the same thing - their fireworks shows weren't anything compared to Pendleton's. Pendleton, as always, rocked!