University of Colorado

Favorite Things – September

I only care one day a year.

You know! Caring about which team to root for.

Growing up in Northern Colorado I really ought to be a CSU fan. Then I went to the University of Colorado and my ‘house of origin’ became a house divided.  You’ve seen the stickers. You know what I’m talking about.

Then I married a Buffalo and my new ‘house’ was united under waves of black and gold. We even brought Dad over to the dark side. He would proudly wear his CU Hat – sweat stains and all. I wish he was here to come over and watch the big Rocky Mountain Showdown  rivalry from the comfort of our living room.

My  favorite things this month?

  1. CU Gear – May I suggest these fine options?

University of Colorado CU Buffaloes Alumni Nation Stripes Flag

NCAA University of Colorado Buffaloes Custom Athletic Crew Socks

Sing the fight song loudly! I’ll be cheering on my Colorado Buffaloes. Who wants to place a bet on the game?

2. Stumptown Coffee

Yes. Again. Coffee. We went on a lovely trip to Portland and I dragged my family around to local coffee shops. I wanted to include these guys on my best vanilla latte in the world contest I’ve got running in my head. Stumptown was delicious, approachable and trendy. They didn’t cringe when I asked for syrup. Very important. I am thrilled to have added this roaster to my list. While they can’t ship me a vanilla latte, I can get some beans. The internet is a magical thing.

3. This Osprey Daypack

My father-in-law took us on an eight mile hike to an old mining town that didn’t really exist. Well I’m sure it did at some point, but when we got there, the only remnants were a post with a sign, and a nice river bed. Try to find the photo on my Instagram.  I was thankful to have this great daypack for hiking. Well, grateful my husband was carrying this great daypack for hiking. Dylan carried the water – I sipped out of the long straw much like a baby cow follows its mother for milk.

4. Lauren Graham’s Book

If you were (still are…?) obsessed with Gilmore Girls in the early 2000’s I highly recommend this book. Think half memoir, half story of the show, this book made me laugh, cry, and feel nostalgic. Amazing to think how much t.v. shows weave their narratives into our lives. Gosh I love Lorelei. Lauren’s perspective is pretty great too.

5. This video.

 

I think this is the kind of thing Olive thinks about all day. Perhaps she even confesses to Cerdito. This video and that puppy may be my new obsession. Much like my Marcel the Shell phase. Who am I kidding? I still love Marcel.

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To Dad

One of the last questions my dad asked me was, “What’s with the Jiff in the cupboard?”

My dad was loyal to his peanut butter. Skippy brand. Super Chunk. No other way.

“Sorry Dad,” I said, “I think it was the cheapest option.”

That is one thing we have in common. Being cheap – or rather, as we prefer to call it, being “bargain hunters.” Dad and I, we love a good deal.

There are a million things to remember and miss about a love one taken too soon. I’m sure this list will grow as I continue to get older and I hope that the space my dad fills in my heart continues to expand, rather than shrink over time. For now, in the tsunami of emotions that come with this perplexing event, here are some of the things I will forever love about Dad.

He has this horrendous hat that he would wear on the weekends. The black fabric was bleached with sweat and salt from mowing lawns, or cleaning house. He refused to get rid of it though, because it was a gift I gave him during my freshman year of college. He wore the baseball cap with the University of Colorado logo often, and would cheer along with my alma mater proudly. In a family of Rams, Dylan and I are going to miss his Buffalo solidarity.

In fact, he refused to get rid of a lot of things. Our Disney VHS collection still exists, my artwork from elementary school, a ticket stub from a Rockies game, toys from his childhood, swim noodles to keep because you just never know when you may need to go for a dip in the lake. I love his appreciation for the little mementos that others discard. These collections have made up his life.

I’m going to miss ordering his tall Pikes Place cup of coffee when making a Starbucks run. Black – no cream, no sugar. I’ll miss making fun of his dance moves, and the way he would text us informative articles from Yahoo.com as he perused the internet each evening. I’ll miss snacking with him as we cooked meals together, filling up on chip crumbs and cheddar cheese before the main entrée ever made it to the table. Cinnamon ice cream and cookies for breakfast will forever be eaten in his honor.

You can’t end a reflection like this with a best, or a favorite, or even a most prominent statement. The things I love about my father continue to blend, and meld together, swirling to create beautiful images of the man God gave to me to be my dad. When asked the question, “Will you love your dad forever?”, I have to answer with his default Minnesotan response, “Oh, you betcha.”

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Buffaloes, Buffaloes, Go CU!

You know what song has been blasting through our home this week?

This one:

No. I wouldn’t exactly say that this is a beautiful thing. It’s actually rather obnoxious, but we have been playing it so much that it makes me laugh, and laughter is beautiful. I showed this clip to my mom and watching her learn these dance moves, that was beautiful.

Jimmy Fallon’s rendition is even more hilarious, and this has been keeping me laughing all weekend.

I would love if Ellen could come play the Lip Sync game with me. That woman is amazing. There are so many parts of life where you just have to find things to laugh about, and if this gets you giggling, I hope it brings some joy this week.

There was a rather large football rivalry this weekend. I just want to send a shout out to my beautiful Colorado Buffaloes! Woot Woot. I was raised in CSU territory, and attended CU, and so most days my loyalty is subpar for my alumni status. I do get really excited about the Buffaloes one weekend a year – the Rocky Mountain Showdown.

I, myself, am a lone Buffalo in a family of Rams, and so I send smack talk texts to my cousins, my mom, my uncle, anyone who will listen on one day a year. I get a little cocky and make bets that never come to fruition. Unfortunately, both teams aren’t exactly top ten in the nation.

I was so excited that the Buffs won this year. Our tv isn’t quite set up  since we moved last week, and so my parents and my in-laws gathered around our radio and listened to the game. Just like in the 1940’s. Quaint. They probably ate buffalo chicken dip in the 1940’s right? Frank’s Hot Sauce was totally a thing. Enough calories for the week. Opportunities to talk smack about the Rams and mostly make fun of my family as we cheered on our favorite four legged mascots. I loved screaming the CU Fight Song from my newly organized kitchen with Dylan. My father-in-law was shocked I remembered the words. I’ll tell you a little secret – when you are a freshman at CU they give you a t-shirt with the fight song printed on the back. That way, every game you go to, you find a freshman, stand behind them, and memorize the song. When you graduate, you take that shirt, and still wear it on game days.

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You sing the song. You cheer loudly. You have something to be proud of. Even when your football team has “room to grow.” Room to grow is a beautiful thing. Watching Ralphie run the field, that’s powerful. Much more than Cam the Ram.

In our culture that is seeped in competition, in proving ourselves or protecting ourselves, I was able to see through some of the rivalry, the false promises, the ridiculous shows that we put on, and laugh. That is beautiful. And oh my goodness, buffalo chicken dip is beautiful. So. Delicious.

No biscotti or nail polish this week. Stay tuned I guess.