Live a good story

Set Me Free Somewhere in The Middle of Montana- Live a GOOD Story

Hi Shenanigan Enthusiasts!

Happy Friday! I hope you all had a week full of life, love, and SHENANIGANS! Lord knows we weren't lacking for any of the above around here! Rowdy and I continued our little game of I fill the pig water trough, he dumps it out and tosses if down the hill! He had me for a bit BUT for now I have him duped!!! Fingers crossed it stays that way!  I can't stake it down because the ladies (pigs) love to climb in and drink, so they really muck it up and it needs regular dumping and cleaning before filling back up. So now I have three cinder blocks, left over from a project last year, that I set in the tub. WOOHOO! I win for now! 

Every day I see a little greener tint on the hills as the ground begins to come alive post winter. Yay, a little magic to celebrate! I thank GOD every day as I walk down to bust everyone out of the barn in the morning. I am GRATEFUL for having already sipped some hot coffee, the sun coming up, the still snowcapped mountains all around, fields of hay below, the strength to lift bales of hay, the joy of a little Merle Haggard tune on the phone in my pocket while I shovel the s**t from the night before. My happy place. It's amazing how when I start my day with gratitude more to be grateful for unfolds. The saying what you focus on expands is so true! Blessings and lessons all around. 


Merle Haggard - Our Merle

If I had my way every one of our funny farm pals would be named after an old school country artist. If you have been reading my blog along the way you might have figured out, I LOVE music, especially country tunes. Music is my therapy. Whether I am happy, sad, or fightin' mad, a good song helps me feel what I need to feel. Last weekend I went through my old hope chest while we were killin' time (this was an accident but yes, this is a country song, listen here) waiting for my hubby to distill a little moonshine! SHH... and I happened upon a lot of things, including pictures of us when we were 17 and 18, same ages our oldest son and his girlfriend are now, BANANAS! I will save more on our journey of young love for another day. I found my autographed picture from Merle Haggard!!!! My very first concert and possibly why I love old school country so much. Well, that and maybe because the radio in my dad's old ford truck, the "silver bullet" didn't work for a long while so he taught my sister and I all the Merle, Hank, David Allen Coe, and Ricky Skaggs (I had to link this one to Honey for Jessi, my cousin and Laina my sis) songs and we would sing 'em everywhere we went. We sounded a lot better when he got a new radio!!! Don't worry mom, I haven't forgotten you for instilling my love of The Judds, Gloria Estefan, and The Carpenters! Anyway, it was a fun walk down memory lane and my way of telling you why our Merle is named Merle. 


Kolton and AllieJeff and I - babies

Turn me loose and set me free somewhere in the middle of Montana.....


It's funny how what seems random in life is not so random when you take the time to reflect. When we chose to move to Montana Jeff, nor I had ever been here. We had been exploring the possibility of moving but mostly looking at Idaho and it was somewhat hypothetical for me. All of our family lived close and I loved our community, which was where our kids had started school and grown to that season in our lives. That said, Jeff came to me one morning and said "check out this area in Montana". I did and by noon I told him we are moving there. He said, "you haven't even been there!" We booked a trip and the rest is history. We came back, put our home on the market, built a home in Montana said goodbye for now to friends and family we love and made a leap of FAITH. It is the BEST thing we ever did. Sometimes you just have to trust your gut even though to the rest of the world it seems CRAZY. We had been through a lot of growing pains in life, and love (lessons - more to come another day). As a result of the lessons, we got very clear on what mattered most to us and when you have that kind of clarity hard decisions are easy (blessings). 


It's funny looking back, I KNOW we were always being guided through the lessons and the blessings. Jeff says he was born a Montanan is just took him 39 years to get here. And me, well the songs say it all. Merle- at my very first concert sang the song Big City (click lyrics below to listen).

Big city turn me loose, set me free 
Somewhere in the middle of Montana 
And give me all I've got comin' to me


And then... one of my FAVORITE SONGS growing up MEET ME IN MONTANA(click here to listen) by Marie Osmond and Dan Seals. I can still see the CMT video playing when I listen to it. My kids hate/love it! I still LOVE IT!!! When I am tired driving late at night I can crank it up and sing my heart out and make it safely, to my home in MONTANA. Click Montana link, if you are up for a laugh, cover your ears and watch my sister Laina, and I sing a terrible karaoke version at one of the many going parties we had. SOOOOOOO bad, it's good!!!


Well, there you have it our Merle is Merle because of Merle and maybe the random unfolding of life is not so random. I don't know much but I know this crazy, tragic, sometimes almost magic, awful, beautiful life is up to me! And I know I'm gonna keep CHOOSING to LIVE A GOOD STORY!


Until we connect again, may you laugh 'til you snort, take the bull by the horns (GRIT), give yourself and others some GRACE, live a good story, always look for the MAGIC to CELEBRATE!


Much Gratitude, 




p.s. Help share the LOVE & SHENANIGANS...Every time you share a post from Love & Shenanigans on social media you will be entered to win a goodie from the store! We will do a drawing each Sunday! Share away and check to see if you are the lucky winner! xoxo



Immediately started singing “Young Love” by The Judds when you mentioned you and hubby’s young love story🥰

Diana Terrazas

Love this as your stories every week !
Brings a smile on my face

Kari Kelly Scoggins

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