Tag Archives: Buckle

It’s NEVER Too Late!!

The last few weeks have been about changes for me…..BIG ones! I got 10″ cut off my hair and donated it to Locks of Love. It felt great to give to such a great cause! I even got bold and had my stylist add in some caramel highlights. I absolutely love it!

My new hairdo

Then last week I announced that I had sold the crystal designs portion of my business, Cowgirl Swank, to my friend and former employee, Kayla Lien. Some folks were worried about me…..like I was going off the deep end or something? Not to worry! All is well here….I’m just focusing on other things (the ranch, homeschooling my son, etc.). I’ve been wrapped up in Cowgirl Swank’s activities for the past 7 years. I am enjoying my new found freedom. I knew the transition would be an easy one because Kayla has done crystal designs for the past 3 years so the only things that changes essentially is the business name and the fact that I’m not involved anymore. The same great quality and style of crystals designs on headwear will still be there! I wish Kayla and Rough & Rowdy Designs (her new business) the best of luck!

So, what else is changing? I wish I could say that I dropped 20 pounds like I was supposed to for our upcoming family pictures, but….yeah, that didn’t happen. The change that I’m talking about is really focusing on making things happen. You know how folks sit around and talk about their dreams and goals? You know how it sounds so achievable when you are talking? Well, why don’t we put those plans into action? Put our money where our mouth is so to speak? I’ve been guilty of this in the past, but as time goes by and the years add up I have had some time to think about this. I look in the mirror and I realize that I’m not a kid anymore (no, I don’t have one foot in the grave either, but you get what I’m talking about). Life goes by fast……and if you don’t have purpose before you know it you will be out of time. SO…….I’ve been thinking about all the things I had on my bucket list when I was 30 (11 years ago). I ran across an old copy of this list when I was cleaning the other day (see there are positives to cleaning). Right at the top of the list was “compete in Breakaway Roping again”. Ahhhh……there it was. The elusive goal that I hadn’t achieved yet. It may seem like a simple thing to some of you….just go get on your horse, back in the box, nod your head, and rope the calf. Well, it’s not that simply. Let me back up a bit…..

On the 4th of July, 2005, I was doing just what I described above. I was on one of the gentlest horses on the place roping at home. I backed in the box, nodded my head, and took off after the calf. He was a runner and I was late. I kicked old BJ up there and low and behold if he didn’t suck back and go to bucking…..what the heck?! I didn’t even know this old fart could do that! I’d like to think that he came uncorked like Tipperary, but I’m sure he looked more like those horses on the Merry-Go-Round…..nonetheless he unloaded me as I was mid-kick and mid-swing when he did this. So, yeah….there I was up in the air…..I came down hard on the saddle horn and hyper-extended my left wrist (my roping arm). I then proceeded to hit the ground like a bag of potatoes. It wasn’t pretty…..he knocked the wind out of me pretty good. I was laying there looking up at the sky with the most intense pain I’d felt in a long time in my wrist. Shane and my dad ran up to me to see if I was dead I’m sure…..nope, but I felt like I might die any minute. I got up after a bit and eventually hobbled up to the house. I took a bath….or tried to after I unloaded the 5 gallon bucket of dirt out of my shirt and pants. Eventually the pain got the better of me and we headed to the emergency room. Long story short….I didn’t break it…..but it would have probably been better if I had. I tore a bunch of ligaments in my wrist and hand. There really wasn’t much they could do for me since some of those ligaments are like fishing line (too tiny to repair). I was in a brace and a sling for a long time. I played the waiting game. I favored my left arm for a long time (even after the brace and sling were gone). I actually developed something that I had never had much of before….FEAR. Mostly it was fear of getting hurt again, but it was fear no matter how small. My dream of competing in breakaway roping sort of drifted to the back of my mind and to the bottom of my list as life took over and time slipped on by.

Fast forward to 2012 when I first learned about the WRRA (women’s ranch rodeo association). All fear left me in that instant as I vowed to get back in the arena to compete. It took some doing, but the summer of 2013 I did just that at the Cowgirl Swank Classic. I had the biggest smile on my face that entire weekend…..in reality I don’t think that smile ever really left. There is nothing that compares to rodeo…..no matter what event it is. I absolutely love competing in women’s ranch rodeos. I found a permanent home late this summer with Turkey Track Livestock. Our team consists of Tiffany Hampson, Jenny Walker, Bridgit Downs, and me. I feel like I’ve known these girls my entire life….and that it was meant to be!

Over the past 2 years I have been gaining confidence with my wrist in the 5 events at the women’s ranch rodeos. There are weird things that happen with it and I do tend to protect it. Sometimes stirring something on the stove, brushing my hair, or carrying a bucket of water or a bale of hay will set it out of joint. It tweaks it and it hurts like crazy. I just have to work with it until it goes back in (it can take minutes…..or days). It’s strange…..and unsettling, but for the most part that happens less and less. I think the best thing for my wrist is to continue using it as much as I can. So, a while back I was driving home in one of my daydream states when I started thinking about breakaway roping again. I should also tell you that breakaway roping has been in my blood since I was 12 years old. It was my very favorite event in high school and I was pretty darned tough at it. Tough enough that I won state in high school my senior year. Here are a couple of pics of me in high school competing in my favorite event:

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Here are my 3 favorite buckles (the ones I won at state in high school);

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*Shane and Stone have both won buckles this year so far……I am on a major mission to win a buckle before the year is over (more on this later)!

Some of our friends were at the youth rodeo in Oelrichs and they were talking about the upcoming SDRA rodeo. For many years I thought about entering it as a local, but never got the gumption to do much about it. Well, one week out I decided that I was going to enter it come hell or high water. That’s just how I am for the most part. I figure….go big or go home so here I am going big again! Shane entered the team roping with Kelly Dyer. I entered the breakaway roping and the mixed team roping with Shane. Kelly’s wife, Tami, is also in the breakaway roping and the mixed team roping with her husband. She is also involved in the WRRA and is tough competition (and a great gal). What fun this will be!

I won’t say that I’m going to go out there and be a fast 2……man, I’m just goaling myself to have a nice clean run. I’m not unrealistic about what I can do…..after all…I’ve had one practice session in 9 years and I haven’t backed into the box for 23! I like to think big, but not so big that I set myself up for failure. I’d like to think that next summer I can go to more of these and do some more breakaway roping. I guess we will see what happens. I’ll definitely make sure to report in to let you all know how I did….win or lose. One of the most important things in life is to remember that It’s NEVER Too Late to set goals and go after things…..you only get one life so make it a good one!! Wish me luck! 🙂

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Happy Father’s Day!!!

Today is Father’s Day….a day to appreciate the wonderful dads in the world! My family and I had a rather late night getting back from a kids rodeo in Broadus, MT. We had a lot of excitement there, which I will share with you in just a bit. First, I want to pay homage to my Dad…..and to my husband. Here is what I wrote about Father’s Day a month or so ago (for a few publications):

“As I sit down to write my column today it’s storming out and we are without power (thankful for my laptop with its battery backup). We’ve had close to three inches of rain and several inches of snow on top of it. The snow/rain continues to come down and of course, we are still calving. We are under a winter storm warning….and it’s May 8th! I think Mother Nature needs an attitude adjustment! I steady my thoughts by thinking of all the green grass that will be here soon.

Instead of pacing the floor and worrying about it I’ve decided to pay tribute to the “fathers” in my life today. After all, when you read this it will be around Father’s Day (the snow should be gone by then). I have two “fathers” to thank: my dad and my husband.

What can I say about my dad, Cliff Glade? If you are lucky enough to know him, you know what kind of a guy he is. He is a true cowboy/rancher with a wealth of knowledge that forty some years in the cattle business has taught him. He has a kind heart and he truly cares about his friends and family. I know I wouldn’t be where I’m at without him. We’ve had our fair share of standoffs (probably because I’m a lot like he is). However, in the end it also comes back to the fact that he is my dad and I am his daughter. We have an unbreakable bond that we’ve shared since I was born. He used to sit me on his knee when I was tiny and tell me that I could be anything I wanted to be. That sort of encouragement was huge for me. It truly allowed me to think big and go after whatever I set my mind on. He was always a “can do” type of person. Once he decided on something, he made it happen. I’m happy to think that I’m like him in that regard as well. I think the biggest tribute I can pay to him is to follow in his footsteps as a rancher. That’s exactly what I’m doing and I couldn’t be happier! Granted, I don’t do it alone. I have my better half to thank for that.

My husband, Shane, is truly my rock. He came into my life unexpectedly and we’ve been together ever since. We share the responsibilities around here. We make a great team and we will do whatever it takes to ensure the success of our venture. We help each other as best we can in all facets of our lives and the ranch is no exception. He is a great husband and the best father I could ask for to our son. He is also a staunch protector and he makes sure we have all that we need. I can honestly say that I found my soul mate and I know how fortunate I am in this regard. Shane is another “can do” person. He is a force to be reckoned with. Just being around him has made me better in all aspects of my life. I’m not truly afraid to do things anymore. If I set my heart and mind on something, I go after it! It’s a wonderful thing to surround yourself with people who encourage you. I’m not saying that every thought I’ve ever had has been a good one and I haven’t always been encouraged to follow every whim. However, when I kept after it the outcome has most always been favorable and if it wasn’t I learned from it. I got that from my dad and I see it in my husband daily. I’m happy to think that these two great men have rubbed off on me over the years.

What’s even better than what they’ve done for me? What they are doing for Stone. I am so glad to know that our son is growing up around strong individuals who work hard, speak their minds and who aren’t afraid to stand up for what they believe in (my mom and I fit this role also). In this world today, that is not a common thing. Ag folks are more fortunate than most in my opinion. We are privileged to live in the country surrounded by the animals and crops we nurture. We know the true value of life. We know and appreciate hard work and its outcome. We all know that sometimes the outcome isn’t how we had hoped, but in the end the life we live is a good one. We live in reality and I wouldn’t want it any other way. We also know the value of family and how important they are in our lives. I feel that we are truly blessed to be raising our son in the same fashion that we were raised in. If all goes like we hope, our son will be a father someday who can look back at his family with pride. The best tribute he can pay to his dad and his papa would be to take what he learns from them and apply it to his own life as a man. My hopes for him include that he: grows up strong, learns as he goes, is kind, works hard, speaks his mind, and above all else honors his family by being a good husband and father. I care not what he does for a living. I do hope whatever he chooses to do is honest, hard work that leaves him with a feeling of accomplishment at the end of each day (like we feel now). I believe that truly is the best thing any of us can hope for with our children. Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there…..I hope you know just how important you are to those who love you!”

Dad & Stone on BJ My Dad

Stone on his cow My Hubby (and our favorite little boy)

So, onto our excitement yesterday! We debated on how to travel to Broadus, MT. Most of you know that we live 8 miles off the highway on a horrible gumbo road. This year has been so wet that it has truly made traveling anywhere a nightmare (I’m not complaining about the moisture….that’s for sure). Living out here has taught me to roll with the punches so that’s what we do. We decided that we couldn’t take a trailer. We might get out with it, but looking at the forecast we probably wouldn’t get home with it. So, we decided not to take our rig…..Stone’s horse, All Star, had to stay home (I’m sure he was really sad……I think I hear him sigh as he stood there eating clover that is belly high). 🙂

We took off Friday around lunch time. We travel through Rapid City, up to Belle Fourche, and through Alzada. There was a bad storm brewing so we pushed on through to hopefully get ahead of it. We hit some hard rain, but looking at the clouds….we were glad to get through without incident. Here is what we saw to the south of the highway on our way up:

Alzada Storm Clouds

Yep….it was scary! We picked up our oldest nephew, Tucker, in Hammond and gave him a ride to Broadus. We were glad to arrive in one piece. We had supper with our family and got ready for the big rodeo the next day.

At breakfast, Stone had to have his “Cowboy Coffee” to start his day off right. He told me he needed it before his big rodeo. He cracks me up!

Stone Drinking Coffee

We got to the rodeo grounds fairly early so Stone could ride his borrowed steed, Sarge. He had a great outlook for the day!

Stone on Sarge

And how did the day go? Well, our little 5-year-old boy won the All Around in his age division (0-5). He won first in the Stick Horse Barrels and the Goat Tail Untying, second in the Dummy Roping, and 4th in the Keyhole Race. PROUD doesn’t even cover what we felt!!! Here he is with the buckle he won:

Stone First Buckle

He was so proud of himself….and he should have been!

Here is his buckle:

Stones First Buckle

Of all the buckles I have won over the years (close to 50) this one means more than all the rest…hands down!!! A huge thank you goes out to Ray and Tedi Jo Williams for putting on the Rich Higgins Memorial Rodeo. It isn’t easy doing things like this and their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed. Also, a big thank you to the sponsors. Without generous folks things like this wouldn’t occur!

Here we are…..so happy and proud:

Family Buckle Pic

Stone learned so much with his win yesterday….just like he has from his defeats. He can’t win all the time, but he has learned through practice that you can better your odds of doing well in everything. That’s truly all we can hope for….that he learns with each experience in life. And…..when he does well, we can celebrate (like going to Olive Garden for supper on the way home) and when he doesn’t……we can discuss what to do next time. I truly never understood what folks meant when they said their children’s accomplishments overshadowed their own…..now I know….and Shane knows…..and we totally get it now…..and you know what, people who say that are right!! It isn’t about us anymore….it’s about the little boy we are lucky to call son. I feel truly blessed to be his mom. I am also blessed to have such a good man by my side. I have no doubt that our son will grow up to be a wonderful man…..who had incredible male role models around him…..my dad and my husband. As far as I’m concerned….that’s the best prize of all.

So, with that…..I say adios….until who knows when. I haven’t been adept at posting regularly….summer is here and we are busy….I will check in from time to time…..hope your summer is a great one! 🙂 ~Cheyenne