Tag Archives: family

Happy Birthday, CZ!


My best friend, Christie Zellmer, is 22 today! Hooray!

HelloGiggles, one of my absolute favorite blogs, has a post called “A Love Letter to My Bestie and How to Recognize a Bestie When You Have One” and a few of their ways to recognize a bestie are as follows:

  • Besties should be able to watch Keeping up with the Kardashians with you and not judge you, but instead, immediately be able to make fun of Kourtney’s voice.
  • Besties should get super excited about your new jobs and opportunities and support you 100%. They should read your articles and congratulate your promotions.
  • Besties should let you know when you’re acting like a jerk, but never hold it against you. After they tell you, they should stick with you while you cry your eyes out and then pick yourself up. Also, they should show up at your work the night after your breakdown with your favorite Starbucks drink to cheer you up and remind you that you’re not a bad person, you’re just still learning and that’s okay.
  • Besties should always tell you look hot in that dress, but you’ll look even hotter in the one that doesn’t make you look like a bison.
  • Besties should politely pretend you’re not weirdly obsessed with Harry Potter and love you anyway.

Oh how true those are. I can’t even begin to tell you how true they are in me and Christie’s case, but I will try.

(daphne and velma 4ever!)

If Christie and I’s lives were a movie, tonight we would dress in designer duds and wear ridiculously high heels and go out on the town and get free drinks from everyone and take millions of pictures and karaoke together and then get offered a record deal and win a car and fly off into the sunset. However, while this gameplan would not bother me in the slightest, today I wish I was just sitting on our couch with her, watching Kourtney and Kim Take New York for the millionth time, painting our toenails and talking about what Jesus is teaching us and how much we love puppies. That honestly sounds like perfection right about now.

With my friendship with Christie, everything has been so easy. We met freshman year of college but didn’t really get to know each other until the week before sophomore year began. One of those nights, out in the wilderness with no cell phone service on a retreat, we had both heard a message that hit us kinda hard. We ended up talking outside and walking down to the river at a certain campsite. Sitting on a big rock, dangling our feet over the water, we told our life stories and instantly bonded. We stayed out so long that people came looking for us – but that was the thing with our friendship- time never seemed to matter. From then on, we were lucky if we ever left anywhere once we started talking.

Marathon-long conversations in the morning were our calling card. We’d say “let’s do something today!” and then we’d start talking and would spend so long conversing that we would end up pushing all our plans back to late afternoon. Our personalities were alike enough that we could relate, but different enough that we could teach each other. Christie’s friendship in my life has been one that has found us laughing until we cry more often then not and talking til the sun comes up. Plus, we borrow each other’s clothes and trust each other with hair dye, and as girls, that’s a pretty big freakin’ deal.

Christie is one of the few people I know that is able to be both absolutely crazy and silly and playful and then super-serious and contemplative with me 5 minutes later. We can go from talking about The Bachelor to theology in no time, and neither one of us finds it to be an odd transition. It’s like even our brains are best friends.

Our friendship has been rooted in our love for Jesus from the start. In our apartment, we always seem to walk into each others’ rooms with our bibles open, wanting to ask about scripture, encouraging each other in prayer and telling so many stories that cement the fact that God has a sense of humor. Christie constantly makes me evaluate my faith, makes me act on what I believe and is there with tissues when life just doesn’t make sense. Her advice comes from talking to God about things and her heart is strong for Jesus and furthering his name.

The best of friends make you a better person, and for Christie, this is overwhelmingly true. Most of all, Christie has brought out my confidence way more than I thought possible with music. She’s been writing music since she was a kid, basically, and she was the first person that I felt like I could share my own songs with. Her voice is the kind that when she sings, people stop dead in their tracks and listen and her songs are heartfelt and I was a fan of her music even before we were close friends, but to have her sing and play and write music with me? Amazing. Without Christie I would have stuck to playing my ukulele alone in my dorm room, never shared hand-written lyrics with the world, never picked up a guitar, and never played a show. She is the Chuck to my Olive, the soprano to my alto, the shaker to my drum, the guitar to my ukulele and the melody to my harmony. She made music an even bigger part of my life, if that was even possible, and am a better songwriter and a better person because of her.

We’ve been roommates for nearly 2 years, but at times it feels more like 20. She knows me, I know her and we just have that almost-ridiculous dynamic where we finish each other’s sentences. I’m gonna miss when we don’t live together, but I can’t wait to see what our futures hold. I am so grateful for her in my life and am celebrating today from afar!

I love you, bestie! I hope your day is as wonderful as you are, although, that’s an especially tall order. Here’s to 22+ more years of mischief and dance parties and dreaming big.

If you want to leave a little birthday love for CZ, feel free to write a sweet comment here or go check out her fantastic NEW photography blog, Cold River Photography and leave some love! You won’t be disappointment!

Happy Dad Day, Father Lion!

Though I am a lion-haired girl, my Dad’s mane is a little more tamed.

One thing you should know- my dad is an absolute rockstar. Where do I even start? My dad is the reason that I was the confusion of every boy in many parking lots. You see, when someone need their car jump-started, there I was– marching in with the industrial-strength jumper cables he gave me, out of the back of his old pickup truck that became mine and the sassy “oh-don’t-worry-I’ve-got-this” attitude happening. My Dad is the reason I know how to waterski, wakeboard, handle a gun, kickstart a motorcycle, install cabinets, do a Texas two-step, grill, considered The Home Depot a second home as a small child and have both my boating and driver’s license. And I’ll be darned if I’m not proud of all of that.

Besides all these Dad-driven traits, my Dad is also a huge part of who I am. I have my Daddy’s love for working with my hands and problem-solving nature, but I still call him for advice before embarking on any major project. We share the same sense of humor and spontaneity, and he’s always been the one to just trust me and throw me into a situation to help me learn (like how when I was first learning to drive, instead of practicing in a parking lot, he told me to just get on Highway 59 heading to downtown Houston. Yeah, ‘white-knuckled’ tends to teach you to sink-or-swim!). We both love Back To The Future & John Wayne, classic rock and country music playing loud, a good meal, being on the water, finding places off-the-beaten path in the backroads of Texas and not wearing shoes.

But most of all, my Dad has taught and continues to teach me how to be a hard worker, but also enjoy so much of life. He has worked at the same company for over 20 years and still puts on his boots every morning to go in early and work so that I, my brother and my Mama can live so comfortably. He is a Godly man who treats people with so much respect. When my Dad laughs, he laughs loudly and usually, the whole room is listening and laughing along. He is a fantastic storyteller and oh-so-quotable and I hope to be a little more like him each day.

So Dad, even though I’m not in Texas to celebrate with you,

Happy YOU Day!

I love you to the moon and I think that you raised a pretty darn good son and daughter, but I might be a little biased.

*And if nothing else, you raised a daughter who knows the difference between an inboard and outboard motor, phillips-head and flat blade screwdrivers and was overjoyed this morning when the average recorded mileage on her truck increased by .5 miles. So hey, that’s something!

Words Of Wisdom; Gaga

(Note: I like to quote people I love and call it “Words Of Wisdom”.)

“We are on the edge of glory, baby. In fact, I’m the MAYOR here on the Edge of Glory!”

-Mom, declaring our location to everyone in Target who was wondering

(Ps, Along with this quote, I love Gaga, no matter what anyone says. My heart is so excited that Clarence Clemons from my favorite E Street Band plays with her on the new album! Although this version of the song has no saxophone, I adore it, simply because it proves that she is so talented, even without the costumes and “controversy”. Just her and a piano and a thousand little monsters singing along. Enjoy!)

Words Of Wisdom; Citrus Conspiracy

(Note: I like to quote people I love and call it “Words Of Wisdom”.)

“A grapefruit? It doesn’t even look like a grape! It’s a great pretender! THIS is what Freddie Mercury was talking about!”

-Mom, contemplating the fruit basket we received for Christmas

(Shortly after spoken, she then launched into a rendition of this classic. The video makes it ten times better.)

Words Of Wisdom; Mother Knows Best

(Note: I like to quote people I love and call it “Words Of Wisdom”.)

“We’ve decided if there’s ever an apocalypse or society goes into anarchy, we’ll survive because your dad can go out and shoot all our dinner. I think we should start hoarding bacon, because anything tastes good wrapped in bacon. We could eat tree bark wrapped in bacon!”

-Mom, on how to prepare for total world chaos

Words Of Wisdom; Manning Style

(Note: I like to quote people I love and call it “Words Of Wisdom”.)

“You’re in college- this isn’t ‘real life.’ You know what real life is? A bunch of pigeons flyin’ above you. Think about it- what do pigeons do? They’re little, they’re annoying and they shit all over you. Some days you’re under a carport and it’s safe. But most days you’re out there just doing your best not to get hit.”

-Dad, on his view on the real world vs. college