America the Beautiful

All American 4th of July 2014

Small town parade….

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Rodeo…where the only limit on the number of beers you can purchase is how many you can carry


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I’ve got some work to do on high speed low light pictures….IMG_7096 IMG_7089 IMG_7079 IMG_7050

Fireworks, pig roast, family and friends

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(Did you notice Baylor’s missing tooth?! More on that later when I can stop crying…)

Loving Cousin Z timeIMG_7105

There was much controversy brewing over the ring in my back pocket. Anywhere else? No one would notice. In MT? Everyone things I’ve taking up dipping…I assured everyone it was my lens cap, not a can of tobacco!IMG_7173

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We did discover that Auggs is not a big fan of fireworks. But he was a trooper and agreed to watch them from inside so there’s hope he’ll be with Peter on the fire duty in the future!

Livingston Round Up

This year was Baylor’s first trip to the Livingston Round Up Rodeo. We go every year and it’s a blast – the childless version can be seen here….But being pregnant and with Ms. B means we had the slightly less rowdy version this year. However fun none the less! B made it all the way to the spectacular fireworks display complete with patriotic music (the sun doesn’t set until after 9pm so the fireworks started around 10pm). Such a trooper!

Getting to sit with the big girls

The Noni

PW in his rodeo finest

Titi, cousin Zoe’s mom

I had a chance to experiment with my camera and the speed setting a little. The results were pretty darn good!

This is my favorite.

Steer wrestling…this guy is a Wranglers model so I felt a picture was necessary.

And this is the funniest part of the whole evening – this is the rodeo clown with 4 dummies strapped to himself  that move like puppets -they all do the YMCA. It was hilarious and just a pinch disturbing.

I Heart Rodeo

One of my favorite parts about our Montana trip every year is the Livingston Roundup. It’s a small town with a big rodeo. Most of the participants do this for a living and win big doing it. But the actual ridding, roping and racing are only part of the fun. It’s the other sides of the rodeo that make it such a hoot.

First, there’s the cocktails. You don’t purchase one beer, two or even three. You purchase by the six-pack. Mostly because they have a system where you have to first buy tokens, then go stand in another line and buy beer. Rodeo goers don’t want to  miss any action so you buy all your beer at once. But how do you carry and or keep cold all this beer? Why with ice and a trash bag box:

Yes, much like Costco its self, there are a variety of empty boxes and bags to carry your cocktails back to your seats.

Karin is very excited about all this.

When buying the beer, I asked the nice lady with the beer how many six packs I could purchase at one time. When she looked at me strange, I replied that we were there with a lot of people and was there a limit on how many six packs I could get? Her response? “Just where the hell are you from?? You can buy as many as you can carry darlin’!!”. Aaaand that’s why I love Montana.

Now, if you’re not armatures at rodeo drinking like we were, you do like the locals do:

Pretty purse, yes? And then you open it:

Aaaaand you see how the locals do it.

The best discovery at the rodeo this year was our friend Karin’s love of Rodeo Humor. RH is the banter between the miked up rodeo clown and the announcer between riders. They jaw back and forth and make dumb jokes, all of which Karin practically rolled on the floor she was laughing so hard. Which made it infinitely more funny to the rest of us. We’re not sure if it was really that funny, or if the combination of “beer in a box” and “kids are sleeping soundly with the sitter” giddiness were the real reason it was all so funny.  Here’s an example of the fun:

I know it’s a little hard to see, but this is one guy. Yes, the guy in the middle, or the Indian in this version of the Village People, is controlling the other four dummies. Yes, he does have two dummies rigged up to pipes and pullies in front of him and two behind. The result? His YMCA dance is preformed in perfect time by all 5 of them. It was bizarre. It was strange. It was slightly disturbing and it was oh so funny.

The night ends with a gorgeous display of fireworks set to patriotic music that gives you goose bumps. It’s then a scramble and a fight to get back to the car together and in one piece to then wrestle through traffic to the one entrance to the highway. Start to finish, it’s a front runner for one of the best events of our year!