Arkansas

Contains posts all about my life in Arkansas and the state’s wonderful quirks.

Claim to Fame

Have you ever heard of John Brown University?

Unless you know me personally or we went to college together, I’m gonna guess probably not.

JBU is a small private college in Siloam Springs, Arkansas. Aside from being ranked #1 Best Value among Southern Colleges by U.S. News and World Report, JBU has one other claim to fame.

The Toilet Paper Game.

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What started in 1980 with a few rolls of pilfered toilet paper thrown onto the basketball court by some crazy college kids has turned into the best technical foul in all of college sports.

Every year, hundreds of fans armed with hundreds of rolls of TP pack Bill George Arena for JBU’s home opener. There’s the dimming of the lights, the introduction of the players, the handshakes, the pep talks, the tip off, and then… the first points of the game for the JBU Golden Eagles, which triggers an immediate explosion of flying toilet paper.

See for yourself.

 

JBU gives up a technical foul as a result of the TP’ing, but it’s definitely worth it.

Now the TP Game is pretty exciting in and of itself, but the spectacle has garnered national attention over the past few years. It’s been featured on  Yahoo! Sports, ESPN’s “Around the Horn,” CBS Sports, and even Buzzfeed. Yes, Buzzfeed!

And let me tell you, anytime anybody from a small town makes national news about anything, it’s a big deal. It gets the townsfolk all a flutter. We talk about it for weeks. But then the talk dies down and life keeps moving and the Golden Eagles usually go on to have a pretty good season.

But for that one night, those few moments, we become the most exciting arena in college sports.

Fall back

Happy first day of fall!

I realize I’ve been absent from here for a while. Turns out that transitioning from college life to real-world life is a little time consuming. Going to class for two hours a day in college is perfectly fine, but going to work for two hours a day is not. Needless to say, I’ve spent a lot of hours working this summer. But I love my job so that’s ok!

I figured since today is the start of a new season and now that I’m fairly adjusted to this new season in life (just look at the metaphors and analogies!) it’s time to return to my blog. There’s more to come, but for now enjoy the beautiful sights of fall in Arkansas.

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A-team underwear

Did your mom ever tell you to make sure you wore your good underwear every time you went out in case you got in a wreck and the paramedics had to cut your pants off you?

No? Neither did mine.

Actually, I don’t know why I said that just now either. That was strange. And kind of morbid. Sorry.

But I would like to add my two cents to that lovely sentiment.

You should always wear your good underwear (which I like to call A-team underwear…gives them more of the epic vibe they deserve!) when you go out because one day it will be windy in Arkansas.

You will be driving home from work and you will need to fill your car up with gas because you just slipped under the dreaded red line.

You will find the cheapest gas in town, which really isn’t cheap at all, but will have to do because inflation is taking over the world.

And on that windy day that you stop to get gas, you will also be wearing the flowiest skirt you own.

You will pay an arm and a leg at the pump and while your wallet is being sucked dry, you will decide that you’ve finally had enough of the bird poop on your windshield and that it’s time to wash it off.

The bird poop will be so stinkin’ stuck to your windshield that you will need both hands to scrub.

And all of a sudden a gust of wind will blow through and you will look like Marilyn Monroe.

Actually, you will not look like Marilyn Monroe at all because at least in that picture (y’all know which one I’m talking about) she halfway looks like she’s “trying” to hold her dress down. This will not be the case for you.

You’re free as the wind.

And in that moment, the only thing that will keep you from total humiliation… your sole piece of consolation that will save you from many sleepless nights and years of therapy…

…is the fact that you wore your A-team underwear.

(Un)appetizing apps

“How did I ever live without the iPhone?”

I’m kind of embarrassed to admit how many times I’ve asked myself that since getting an iPhone last September.

I never thought I would be one of those techie people who hugged and loved their electronic devices and called them George, if you know what I mean. I don’t think I’m quite there yet, but I really love my iPhone.

One of my favorite things to do is look up new apps. I’m kind of embarrassed to admit how much time I’ve wasted browsing through the App Store.

Now y’all know (or if you don’t, you should) that I love cooking. Love it, love it, love it. Sometimes I secretly dream of going to culinary school. I guess that ain’t a secret no more, but whatever. Anyway, I’m all into the foodie apps in the App Store. I downloaded one last week that was particularly enjoyable.

But not for the reason you might think.

The app is called Allrecipes.com Dinner Spinner. One of its main features is that it lets your “spin” or shake your iPhone to get a random selection of dishes and ingredients. They target this feature to people who aren’t quite sure what they want to eat. I think they should target it to twenty-something female college students who love to cook more than they love to do homework.

Or maybe not. That advertising strategy might only work on me. Just a guess.

Still, I was thoroughly entertained the other night by the variety of combinations I got by shaking my iPhone. Some sounded good. Some were… well, interesting. See for yourself.

 

I can’t make fish dessert recipes in my slow cooker? Sad day! I really wanted that salmon peach cobbler.

 

There were also normal recipes for main dishes with fish like baked salmon and tilapia. (But still no salmon peach cobbler.)

 

These were the recipes that turned up for cookies with some sort of fruit ingredient. Here’s my question… what in tarnation is a hootycreek? Sounds like something we probably have in Arkansas.

 

Ask and ye shall receive. A hootycreek is a beautifully festive cookie in a jar recipe that makes a great gift. My life is better for knowing this.

 

The app has plenty of recipes for main dishes with chicken.

 

But none for chicken beverages.

 

Or chicken cookies.

I’m sad. I wanted all of those things. (I kid. I kid. It just makes the app more funny if I pretend to be hurt by its lack of ridiculous recipes. Ha.)

And on that note, I’m off to go concoct a recipe for salmon peach cobbler in the slow cooker!

Monthly roundup

I told myself that this would never happen. I told myself I wouldn’t be one of those bloggers that fell off the face of the earth for indefinite periods of time only to resurface and say, “Oh I’m so sorry! But my life got busy and this and that and blah, blah, blah.” But it’s happened… again.

Here’s the deal.

I graduate in less than two months. And while I am ready to be done with school and homework, I am definitely nowhere near ready to leave the friends family I’ve made over these past four years. I am determined to soak up every minute I have left with the absolutely wonderful people in my life. And if my blog posts have to come less frequently in order for me to do that, then so be it.

I still love y’all. Promise. But y’all are just gonna have to hold yer horses for a while.

So, as is (somewhat) usual for me, here’s the monthly roundup of the last month of my life. It has been full of adventure!

 

My friend and I went to the historic district of a nearby town last month and explored. It was so fun! The area was beautiful and charming and there were advertisements painted on the sides of buildings. I’m a sucker for old advertisements painted on the sides of buildings. Just to let y’all know.

It snowed. Once. And it melted the same afternoon it came down. That’s been the only sign of winter we’ve seen all year. And as much as I like snow, I ain’t complaining. Bring on summer! I’m ready for warmth and sunshine!

The sunsets have been beautiful! This is good for my soul. (But let it be known that sunsets in Kansas are still 4597230958 times better than they are in Arkansas.)

I’ve been learning lots of useful things in school. This is from my freshman-level art history class. It’s my favorite. Can’t ya tell?

And even though I’m totally slacking off in class (and not ashamed of it), I’m still keeping up my grades (see, Momma?). In fact, this was the highest grade I’ve ever made on a test in college. Thank you freshman-level art class that takes almost no effort to pass.

I went skeet shooting last weekend with some friends. It was a blast! I’ve shot trap before (once) but this was my first time shooting skeet. I was terrible. But it was great fun. It’s my goal in life to be a good shot someday. Then I won’t feel like such a poser. I swear, what kind of country girl can’t shoot a gun? Oh right, me. Farm girl fail.

That’s about all for now. I’ll do my best to keep y’all updated as much as possible, but like I said, I’m gonna enjoy the heck out of every last minute I have until graduation! I only have 79,719 minutes left. That’s 55 days.

That’s too soon.

Recaps, reviews and resolutions

Everybody’s doing it. You know, writing a “Here’s-what-I-did-in-2011-and-here’s-what-I’m-going-to-do-in-2012” blog post. And I’m finally jumping on that bandwagon. I’m only four days late.

I run on my own schedule.

 

2011 was a fun year! And because I’m sure y’all have already read a bunch of these kinds of lists and I don’t want to bore you, I’ll just rattle off a few quick highlights. I’m sure this is probably more for my benefit/nostalgia/enjoyment than yours anyway.

–2011 saw more snow days for my little Arkansas university than it had seen in 30+ years.

–Said snow days occurred as a result of one heck of a crazy snowstorm everyone dubbed, “The Snowpocalypse.”

–Then came, “The Rainpocalypse.”

–I failed at baking brownies, coloring, cards, and drawing the state of Kansas.

–The highlight of the year was definitely completing an internship in Spain!

–I decided to take the LSAT and possibly apply to law school.

–I started my senior year of college.

–I got to TP a basketball court.

–2011 closed out with a (semi)-winter storm and plenty of Christmas and New Year’s parties.

 

Now… for 2012.

I’m not much for resolutions. It’s not something I’ve ever really done and I’m much more of a go-with-the-flow person as opposed to making a plan and sticking to it tooth and nail.

I jokingly told a friend that I had made a one-day resolution to cheer for the Denver Broncos when they played the Kansas City Chiefs even though I am a huge Chiefs fan. I only did it because I didn’t want the Oakland Raiders to go to the playoffs, which they would have if Kansas City won. A few minutes after the game started though, I figured out that if Oakland lost their game to the San Diego Chargers, it didn’t matter if Denver won or lost; Oakland would be denied a playoff berth. (If you’re unfamiliar with the NFL playoff system, let me tell you, it can get a little crazy!)

So I said heck with the Donkeys, uhh… Broncos, and cheered all-out for my Chiefs!

And it all ended up working out ok. The Chiefs won and Oakland lost! Yay!

But, I digress.

Back to New Year’s resolutions.

Which I don’t really make.

With the exception of sarcastic one-day resolutions pertaining to football games that I actually make for selfish reasons.

And then break ten minutes into them.

I have problems. I know this.

But for real. A couple days before the new year, I downloaded a year in photos app for my iPhone. Y’all know what I’m talking about. Take one picture a day, every day, for 365 days.

Now, I’m really not a fan of such long-term commitments, mostly because I don’t like planning and being tied down, but also because I’m pretty sure I’ll break them. Nevertheless, I’m attempting this one. And by attempting, I mean keeping up with it as long as I can and not caring too much when I miss a day.

I’ve kept up with it so far though! Four days… impressive, I know.

Here are the first three photos and captions. (I haven’t uploaded the fourth to my computer yet. It and subsequent photos will hopefully follow.)

 

New Year’s Cookies! This is a family tradition. Every year my aunt makes these delicious German treats. This year I had at least six of them. I lost count after that, so the final tally isn’t exactly known. Oh well, it’s better that way. I’d probably rather not know how many I ate. I tend to overindulge a bit during all the holiday parties.

I have problems. I know this.

Being a cat is rough. Just ask my cat, Turvy, and he’ll tell you all about it. He gets to spend all day inside and stick his head in the bag of cat food and eat whenever he wants. And he’s supposed to be an outside cat. Pshhh. My mother spoils him.

Family Christmas supper at the local restaurant. This was like the twelfth (and final… thank goodness) family Christmas we’ve had this year. I love my family. I really, really do. And I love get-togethers and parties! But we like to eat in my family, so there is always tons of food at our get-togethers and my stomach has finally said enough.

The flip side is that in a week, I know I’ll be back at school dying to have a home-cooked meal again, so I really shouldn’t complain.

And that’s all for now, folks!

I hope y’all had a fantastic Christmas and New Year’s with your friends and families and that you can approach each day in 2012 as it comes, with a smile on your face!

Life recently

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I’ve neglected this blog. I’m sorry.

I know y’all wait with bated breath (pet peeve cliché right there) to read about the super exciting details of my life and y’all’s worlds cave in when I don’t post an update every day…

Okay, maybe not.

I’m pretty sure I only have three readers anyway, so sorry to you three. Let’s move on.

Life recently has consisted of…

–Thanksgiving. My favorite holiday of all time. It’s ten times better than Christmas in my opinion. No gifts. (I’m so not a gifts person.) Just quality time with friends and family, (I’m all about the quality time) and lots and lots of food. I’m all about the food too. I love to fill my plate with everything: turkey, mashed taters, sweet taters, green bean casserole, stuffing, and then cover my entire plate in gravy. Yes please, amen, thank you Jesus. Gravy is all that is right and holy in this world.

–Basketball. I’m still totally into football (even though my Chiefs are quickly playing their way to a last place standing in the AFC West) but basketball is my favorite sport and the college basketball season is gearing up. Several weeks ago my little Arkansas college made national headlines after our first home game of the season.

That is the Yahoo homepage. We’re famous for earning basketball’s best technical foul. And it’s a doozy. If you dont’ know what I’m talking about, you should do a Google search for, “JBU TP game.” It’ll change your life.

ESPN tweeted about us!

ESPN even aired footage of the game and gave commentary on our crazy tradition during its show, “Around the Horn.” We were on national television! It was a pretty big deal for our little bitty school.

And for one last bit of importnat life info, (that is probably not all that important to most people, but I’ll tell y’all anyway because that’s the kind of person I am…)

–I am turning into an old person. I just had a birthday earlier this week and now I go to bed at like 11:00 every night. Considering that I am a night owl and I am also a college student, this early bedtime business is kind of ridiculous. But I’m also not complaining. Sleeping is wonderful. I just haven’t done a whole lot of it the past three years of my life. It’s like I’m rediscovering my affections for an old friend.

That wording was weird. It’s past 11:30. I’m not thinking clearly. It’s past my bedtime. I’m going to bed.

Life post LSAT

It is finished.

It’s been finished for a while. Nine days to be exact.

(I’m talking about the LSAT, in case you didn’t know.)

I’m just waiting for October 26 when I get my score back. I’m trying not to over-analyze how I did; I know I didn’t bomb it, but I don’t think I knocked it out of the park either. I’m leaving it at that and just trying to not think about it.

My life post LSAT has been just as busy. I spent 13 hours in a darkroom over the course of two days last week trying to stumble my way through developing film and prints for an assignment that was due today. I had no idea what I was doing but my photos still turned out well (praise the Lord) and I even had fun (a little bit).

My assignment was to shoot several rolls of film around my little college town’s historic downtown area. I took my dSLR along with me because it’s like my trusty security blanket compared to this newfangled film camera.

You know you grew up in the digital age when you think a film camera is “newfangled.”

But anyway, I found this old abandoned church and I fell. in. love.

I just love abandoned buildings. Remember the old house I explored in Kansas last Thanksgiving? Check out the photos here in case you missed it.

Well, this church had a tree growing out of its walls. It was so interesting. I took the RAW file and played around with it in Photoshop just for fun. I usually don’t use a lot of actions, but I ran one that I thought might give the photo a fun look. After I tweaked it a little bit, I really liked it.

Here it is. Feel free to tell me what you think.

I just wish I could have gone inside and explored more! What a beautiful building.

Until next time,

kskristy

A fall Friday afternoon

Let me take y’all back to last Friday.

It was the day before the LSAT and I had been telling myself all week that I was going to take at least one full-length practice test before Saturday. And surprise, surprise, I hadn’t done it yet. I told myself I was going to do it that afternoon. No excuses.

But something came up. An immediate pressing issue. An urgent situation. That I had to give my full attention to.

Some friends invited me to go to a pumpkin patch.

How could I say no? It was a beautiful fall afternoon and y’all know me… I’m all about ditching my responsibilities to have fun.

It’s a problem.

So I went and I had a blast and I didn’t regret not studying for even a second.

Meet my lovely friends.

Meet our pumpkins.

The albino one is mine. I loved it right when I saw it. I’d never seen an albino pumpkin before. I figured “albino pumpkin” probably wasn’t the technical term so I Googled it when I got home and I actually couldn’t find a scientific name for it. There are other nicknames out there like ghost pumpkins and snowballs. But no real name. Sad day. You let me down, Google.

Look at us being all matchy, matchy.

I was happy in the pumpkin patch. Can ya tell?

I can’t even tell you. That place was good for my soul. It was way out in the boonies of Arkansas at the end of a dirt road. The guy who owned the place had the sweetest southern drawl. The patch covered five acres of wide open land. There was dirt.

Yeah. That’s right. There was dirt.

I think that was the most exciting part for me.

It wasn’t good, rich Kansas dirt, but it was the closest thing to Kansas dirt I’ve seen in over two months.

All in all, it was such a great day. I loved spending time outdoors in God’s beautiful creation with some of my favorite people.

Ellipsis list…

I miss…

…my blog. It’s been over a month since my last post. I’m so sorry about that! I’ve missed y’all.

…Spain. I found this picture on Pinterest yesterday. (you can find the original here:)

This is Sunflower Valley in Valencia, Spain.

Holy cow beautiful.

I never knew Spain had such beautiful sunflower fields. I was only six and a half hours away from this place while I was in Málaga this summer. Why didn’t I know about this?

I love sunflowers. They remind me of Kansas.

Minus the whole cliff in the background thing. That’s not like Kansas at all.

In this past month I have…

…started my senior year of college. And come down with a major case of Senioritis, which I’ve actually had for the past three years. I put off my homework and all I want to do is have fun times with fun people. Can I major in that please?

…not studied for the LSAT. And I’m taking it on Saturday. Is there a problem here? My logical reasoning skills say yes.

…got an iPhone! Actually, I did that this morning. It’s fantastic. And a time waster. But hey, I don’t care all that much about my homework anyway so we’re all good, right?

Which brings me back to… I miss…

…my Kansas phone number. I had to get an Arkansas phone number with my new iPhone and I just realized that for some reason I was really attached to my old Kansas phone number. Is that dumb? Yes? Ok, I’ll get over it.

Thanks for loving me even though I miss trivial things like phone numbers and don’t blog for a month.

Y’all are wonderful. I’ll be back soon. In less than a month, I promise!

Rainpocalypse photos

Hey y’all! I know it’s been a week since the rain stopped (although it’s raining here again today) and “The Rainpocalypse” is kind of old news, but I’ve just finished editing the photos I shot last week. Dang papers sucked the life out of me last week. But just three more days, two more finals and I am done with school for the year!

I figured I’d let the photos speak for themselves in this post. Enjoy!

 

 

 

The Rainpocalypse

Arkansas is flooding!

For real. It hasn’t stopped raining in my little college town since Thursday.

A friend and I had to run to class today during the heaviest part of the storm, correction: today’s storm. It has been worse. We’ve had tornadoes.

But…nonetheless, it’s pretty crazy out here.

Take a look at the creek that runs through downtown.

 

 

It is NEVER this full. Never. Usually the waterfall is contained to a little six-foot strip right in the middle of that wall.

Not anymore!

This same creek runs right behind my college next to a walking trail.

The creek flooded yesterday and the walking trail is gone.

I promise there are more pictures yet to come! Believe me, the photographer in me is dying to go out and shoot, but as I look out my window right now I can see some beautiful, yet probably not-so-safe, cracks of lighting streak through the sky about every thirty seconds. And the thunder is a-boomin’. Love it.

So here’s the moral of the story. Standing water + bad/pretty/dangerous lightning = Kristy cannot go take pictures of the flood. Sad day. (Although it is a life goal of mine to photograph a lightning storm one day…)

And I’m definitely not worried about the water going anywhere before I can snap its picture. The rain is forecasted to keep coming. All the way until Wednesday.

Personally, I’m enjoying the crazy weather. This Kansas girl has never seen so much rain at one time!

 

Livin’ and lovin’ the (currently) flooded and soaking wet while sitting in class life,

kskristy

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