Its International Finals Youth Rodeo time and I just LOVE the rodeo!!! The IFYR has a very soft spot in my heart because we’ve been helping with it since before it was the IFYR and was just the National High School Finals. Over 15 years of loyalty! Growing up my family was in charge of Stalling and every year we’d go out to the rodeo and help check in the thousands of contestants and their horses through 24 hour check-in. We’d stay in a trailer and make it a family vacation. After my mom relinquished those duties she moved on to just focusing on coordinating the opening ceremonies and national anthem singers. I remember all the “big girls” ahead of me that got to wear all the sequins and carry flags and then – it was my turn!! I carried flags at the IFYR for four years and went onto represent the IFYR at the Miss Rodeo USA contest in 2003. Then I relinquished my duties over to my sister Annie Jo who’s carried them for the past who knows how long……
Duece is the MAN!! 🙂
As I was getting ready to take pictures of the opening ceremonies and heard them announcing the girls bios I started to get sentimental. I was so deep in thought mesmerized by my sister and the thought of this being her senior year that I almost forgot to snap some pictures but I did get a few!!
She looked so grown up and mature out there carrying flags, looking so beautiful and happy! Ohhh to be 17 again…..
No matter what the conditions were that brought AJ into my life I am grateful that it made us sisters. Not just sisters by circumstance but because I love her with all my heart and I feel blessed to have her in my life.
Even though we don’t get to spend as much time with each other as I’d like, I’m glad to have someone who understands. She is funny, bright and compassionate for others. Always having a smile on her face no matter what her true feelings inside reveal and I have no doubt the she is the friend who bridges the gap between the different groups because she NEVER meets a stranger. I’m nervous for her as she goes into her senior year. Nervous with anticipation for all the fun and great opportunities she is going to have. I pray that above all else she finds HER BLISS and makes it her own and lives happily ever after! I hope she always knows how proud of her I am and how much joy she brings into my life and I hope above everything she knows that I am and will always be here for her! I love you “Go-girl” Annie Jo and I am very proud of the woman you are growing up to be and for the person you already are!! XOXO
It takes a entire village of volunteer to make the IFYR Rodeo a success and my family and I feel blessed to get to be a part of it!
Sparkle and Spur
“ If you get thrown from a horse, you have to get up and get back on.” ~Author Unknown