I am beyond proud to live in Oklahoma. I’m also a huge Miranda Lambert fan. She had us all in tears when she sang at the Healing the Heartland concert this past week.
It isn’t often great movies are filmed in Oklahoma, but when it happens we talk about it. Cowgirls N Angels was filmed here last year and several of us got to participate as paid extras. This was my first time on a major motion picture movie set. I had a blast.
Cowgirls goes on sale today at Walmart,. It’s a family friendly with an awesome cast and a great heart. You’ll definitely want to pick up a copy for yourselves.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in one pretty and well preserved piece… but to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, worn out and defiantly shouting, WOW WHAT A RIDE!
What a ride is right. Here is just a glimpse of what has been happening in our home life over the past 30 days.
1. I was cast in my very first movie ever. Being cast as an extra on the Cowgirls N Angels set was a thrill and a half for this woman. I spent two days in the blistering heat of Oklahoma with about 200 other actors/extras filming the rodeo scenes. I’m what they call “back ground” – and the truth is, you may or may not see me after the final slicing and dicing of the movie or with my luck I may wind up being the “woman in the porta john.” Either way, I know I was there and I have the sunburn, new friends, and paycheck to prove it. While being an extra may not be the same level of work as being the star, it’s still work. Paid work at that. Neato!
2. Murder Mysteries are a riot and a half, especially working with this crew. Heather and Amy run a bible based fitness program at our church. Every year they host an awards banquet / fundraiser. This year they wrote a murder mystery and asked my hubs and I to participate. I got to play Kate: saloon gal, gambler, and girlfriend of Doc Galliday. While we did have a written script, most of our lines were improv. Kate is basically the life of the party and gets to flirt with every cowboy in the room. I learned a very valuable lesson that night. Being a church event and all, not all of the cowboys flirted back. I did eventually find a real live cowboy to play with and the results were hilarious. He is a local rancher and as he put it “Darlin’, you don’t want to start this with me, I know I can make you blush and I’m man enough to finish this.” – he was right, how I wound up on that man’s lap is not real clear. It all happened so fast, but I believe he had help as I seem to think I was pushed. I’ve never been so red in my life. Lesson learned: When doing improv with audience participation, be careful not to bite off more than you can chew.
3. My baby turned 18. We celebrated our youngest son’s birthday with a bon fire at our lake house. Every one had a good time. I still cannot believe that he is 18, but it’s true. My mama bear days are over. It is time for me to step back, allow my son to be a man and make his own choices and try my best to stay out of things. That is not easy for me as my oldest can attest. I’m still prone to jump in, take over, and offer much unsolicited advice. My youngest has had a job for about year now at a local store. A store that I’ve never been fond of and his experiences there, just reinforce that gut feel. I cannot go into the details, but my blood is boiling. All I can do right now is dig in my gardens (with Oklahoma clay that is not easy), plant beauty, listen to my son, and pray.
Life is an adventure balanced with thrills, chills, and sorrows. The difficulties in life keep us humble and ever reliant on God. The adventures in life, hopefully keep us thankful.
Until next time.
This post written by Deana O’Hara for Redemption’s Heart. June 20, 2011. All rights reserved.
Have you ever had days where you just feel touched by God? I don’t have them often, but when the creator of the universe wants to touch me – he does it with such flourish that I cannot help but know he see me. I’ll give you an example. I like to spend time in my gardens, watching butterflies and birds make their way. I’ve come to appreciate the beauty of Oklahoma since moving here 18 years ago. The sky just goes on forever and most days I can see a hawk or an eagle if I’m lucky. The clouds are large and white and look like cotton candy just waiting for me to reach out and touch them.
I feel closest to God when I’m in my gardens. It’s there that I spend most of my time talking to him. I was having a particularly rough go at it one day and was spending a large amount of time just pouring my heart out. Feeling that I was being sucked down into a negative state of mind, I decided to start thanking him for the blessings in my life. I rattled off my family, my friends, the birds and wildlife in my yard. As I looked up to comment on the beauty of the sky I talked about how much I love the expanse, and the clouds. Except that one cloud God, that one looks like a monster’s head, I said and I shivered.
Without warning, the clouds began to shift and the monster head disappeared and became something that looked like a lamb. In a state of total shock I asked out loud, “Is that you God?” and again the clouds shifted and revealed a hand.
I giggled for days.
When the creator of the universe wants to dazzle me, he makes it intimate, and he does it with subtle flourish. Why not? He is an artist after all.
I have times and seasons where I really do wonder if I’m doing the right thing, on the right path, or if I’m even seen. I’m really not one of those women who is content to stay behind the scenes and work unnoticed all of the time. Not that every day should be my own private Oscar celebration, but still – sometimes I need to see small snippets; some kind of reassurance that I’m heading in the right direction. Don’t we all?
If you cannot relate to that statement, please let me come check your pulse. Everyone needs those small moments of acknowledgment or thanks at least once in a while and if you don’t – well then I believe you might be lying to me or even to yourself. That or you’ve bought into the lie that not needing affirmation is a sign of strength. It isn’t. It’s a sign of self-reliance and tells me you’ve isolated yourself to such a point that your relationships are dried out. And maybe your own spirit as well. No one is an island. Whether we are capable of admitting it or not, we need each other.
I’ve been second guessing myself lately. This whole going back on stage, learning stand up and improv, auditioning for movies and plays and commercials, and interviewing agents is a scary deal. I’m not a kid anymore. I find the irony of officially joining SAG at 46 years of age both funny and frightening. I’m a mother now, shouldn’t I be doing something more respectable? I caught myself making a plan B. Well if this doesn’t work out, I could always go back to school and become a nurse.
Where does that thought come from? Is it fear? Self Reliance? The desire or need to hang on to an assured ending? That’s why I remembered Second City not that long ago. I did the same thing to myself when I was 22. Remember? I chose the safety of a data room and guaranteed income over my dreams. I did the same thing when Ringling Brothers came to town. I had a chance to audtion and I chickened out.
Not that I was wrong to do that, after all I met my husband that year, but still Plan B doesn’t get me where I want. Plan B is always about safety, lack of risk and is loaded with fear based choices. Plan B doesn’t come close to leading me into being the woman I always wanted to be; Fearless, strong, interdependent, and full of purpose.
I did what I’ve learned to do which is pray and ask God for direction or okay a sign maybe. I can’t tell you what he did, I’d be a little embarrassed actually if you knew. But he did something so closely tied to SC that I cannot help but know that I’m seen and yes, I’m on the right path.
You might say he moved the clouds that were distorting my vision and revealed again the endless sky of possibility.
And you guessed it, I’ve been giggling for days.
2011 is a new year, ripe with possibility for all of us.
While we have the gift of life, it seems to me the only tragedy is to allow part of us to die – whether it is our spirit, our creativity or our glorious uniqueness. Gilda Radner
It’s November, can you believe it? Where did October go? I was going to learn how to make Apple Butter in October, but I guess I procrastinated the month away because that never happened. I’ve been sitting here this morning, trying to plan my menu for the week and I hate to say it, but I’ve got nothing. Well, I have my outline, you know fish on Mondays but still. I need inspiration today. Fortunately for me, WordPress has added a nifty new feature where it will plug-in related blogs at the bottom of your posts. This little trick has led me to some new and exciting places that I’ve been checking out all morning. This is where I like to go when my cookbooks come up empty.
1. Ree Drummond: The Pioneer Woman. Ree lives in Oklahoma and is married to a rancher. While her recipes might not always be low in fat, a lot of them are and her detailed directions make them easy to make. She writes about a LOT more than just cooking. I love her website. Granted, I have to set a timer when I go there because otherwise I’d never get anything done.
2. Abi Joy Hopkins: Support Future Artists. Abi also lives in Oklahoma. I’ve known her for 17 years and she is a delightful young woman whose artistic talents extends to the dinner table. I go to her blog when I’m looking for something fresh and creative. Oh man, you should really check her out. Abi cooks with whole foods and in a day where most young women do not know how to cook — she is an inspiration.
3. Elizabeth Edwards: Mom Cooks Elizabeth lives in Michigan (one of the dozen or so states I’ve lived in throughout my life) and I had to include her. I love her writing style and honesty. She’s a stay home mom just like me. She’s close to my age and I can totally relate to her. I’m thrilled with this new find. (Discovered via WP widgets)
4. Jenn Fowler: Frugal Upstate. I will admit, it was the title of her blog that caught my eye. “Upstate” can only mean one thing, she must be from New York. I was right! Okay, so reading her blog does make me a bit homesick. (I was born near Rattlesnake Gulch, outside of Syracuse.) Jenn refers to herself as a “suburban subversive, plotting to reinvent the way we stay-at-home-moms think about keeping up with the Joneses.” After reading her blog, I can’t help but wonder if my penchant for resale shops didn’t come from my time in NY. (Discovered via WP widgets)
5. When all else fails, I check out All Recipes dot com. It’s a free website where readers share recipe tips and ideas, complete with photographs. I fall back on this one a lot. I can save recipes to my virtual box, print them either as full-page or index cards, and they even have a subscription services where I receive daily recipes. I love it.
I’ve decided to try one recipe from each page this week and then one from my cookbooks. The tricky part is going to be decided which ones. They are all so good. I’ll let you know how it goes, how’s that?
Have a great week ya’ll.
Edited at 1:45 to add:
I have my choices for the week:
Today: Breaded Fish, tartar sauce, green beans, and sweet potato fries from Mom’s Cook. No recipe, just took one of her menu ideas since it took me so long to plan today — note to self: do not pig out on leftover Halloween candy while menu planning — it kinda kills it. LOL
Tue: Malsaysian Mango Chicken Curry from All Recipes
Wed: Roast Chicken with Autumn Veggies from Support Future Artists — this will be perfect as I’ll use the leftovers for chicken soup on Friday. – I’ll be out with my Dad on Friday night, so I’ll just cook up the soup for the guys.
Thursday: Spaghetti with artichoke hearts and tomatoes from The Pioneer Woman
Still looking for a saturday dish – will try something from Upstate and let ya’ll know how that turns out.
- 252 Festival of Frugality at Frugal Upstate (frugalupstate.com)
- Complete Idiot’s Guide for Gluten Free Cooking in Bookstores on November 2, 2010 (prweb.com)
- Menu Plan Monday 11-01-10 (momcooks.net)