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Hallmark Movie Bingo- Free Printables!

So this year, I jumped on the cheesy Hallmark Christmas Movie bandwagon. Man, those things really suck you in, don’t they? As I’m watching, I’m telling myself how incredibly bad this acting/plot/setting is.. but I can’t look away. I have to know if Christmas gets saved. I just have to. So hopefully you can enjoy these fun bingo cards at a holiday family get-together or girl’s night in.

Does Hallmark make Valentine’s Movies??  If so, I’m all in.

hallmark movie bingo christmas bingo county road nine

 

DOWNLOAD ALL 3 BINGO CARDS FREE HERE: Hallmark Bingo

Schedule of Hallmark movies HERE: Watch Now

Holiday Shirts to wear while you watch HERE: Shop

 

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Happiness is a Small Town

small town morse texas

I grew up in a dusty small town in Texas. A town with no population sign, no mayor, no blinking light, and only two gas pumps.

Morse, TX. Home.

The thing is, I wouldn’t have it any other way.  You see, I learned valuable lessons growing up in a dirt-road town. I curated valuable friendships. I made valuable memories.  And sure, you can do that anywhere, but I think it’s a little different when you grow up in a place with just 150 other souls (and a whole lotta livestock.)

City folks just can’t relate, and that’s fine. They had three times as many people in their graduating classes than lived in my town. How could they get it?

There are lessons to be learned no matter where you grew up, but here are the valuable ones the small town life has taught me.

 

  You Have to Make Your Own Fun

We had no swimming pool, no movie theatres, no bowling alleys.. just a couple of parks.  One of them had a metal slide that probably should’ve been outlawed years ago, one swing, and a merry-go-round that gave you splinters. We rode bikes EVERYWHERE. Us girls made up these epic little adventures and probably trespassed a few times. We rarely had a screen in front of our faces, and when we did it was PBS after school or Saturday morning cartoons.. back when they were worth watching. We didn’t have a quick fix when we were bored. I’m thankful for that.

small town playground morse texas
The “dangerous” playground

Be Flexible

We lived 30 minutes from the nearest Walmart or big grocery store, and 90 minutes away from Target or pretty much any other shopping. Looking back now, I realize what a pain it was for my mom to grocery shop. Living in the city, I can run literally around the corner and have what I need. Or I could just have it brought to my door in less than two hours (I do love my Amazon Prime).  She had to plan so far ahead to keep us all fed and happy. If you needed something in a pinch, you’d have to ask your neighbor. Yes, in my town, neighbors talk to each other. 🙂

Nothing Works Unless You Do

Now, I can’t claim that I was always the hardest worker growing up. However, I do remember helping feed horses at the tender age of two, riding with my grandpa on the combine at five, and driving various farm vehicles by 12. I would have to slowly inch the truck forward while my dad pulled the pipe off of the trailer.  I witnessed people working sun up till sun down and even after that.  Hard physical labor too.. there’s no desk jobs where I’m from.

You Have Tons of Freedom (But Also Not)

I got to drive well before 16, and no one batted an eye.  If you were doing something bad (not me), your parents would know before you had time to come up with a story. If you were minding your own business, then no harm. We spent so many hours talking about our fake husbands (at that time Tom Cruise, JTT, and Troy Aikman were tops in my circle). You could find us at the house where all our bikes were thrown haphazardly in the front yard. You could walk down the middle of any street without a care. Many of the old people, my grandparents included, would spoil you with cokes and candy bars and your parents were none the wiser.

Terms Only a Native Would Understand

The Dip. Tom’s. Key Pump. The Trestle. “Going to Town.” Cougar Power. Your epidermis is showing. The Y.

dip sign morse texas country roads
Where all the world’s problems are solved

School Can Be Fun

Yep, my small town has a grade school.  It used to have a high school. My graduating class had eight people in it, the grade below me had one. Here’s the thing though, we got to do SO many unique projects because there weren’t a million kids running around vying for our teacher’s attention.  We had the best parties, the best programs, the best sports opportunities. Singing the school song on our last mile back into town because we had to travel hours for all our games. Heck through a few of my years, they had home-cooked food in the cafeteria. Many times our teachers would put down the lesson plans and teach us real-life lessons. I truly had the most amazing, creative teachers. These days, people bus their kids in from surrounding cities to get their education here. Not to mention, the Halloween Carnival and its cake walk is still the best in Texas as far as I’m concerned.

Friendships are Authentic

You were friends with everyone because this was all you had, so you made it work.. and they turned into the best people ever.  The last time I was home, I ran into two of my eighth grade classmates and we talked like real friends do. I’m in touch with dozens of my Morse classmates.  We just all get that small town life.  It never leaves you! There was literally no judgment among my friends. (Although maybe they should’ve told me I wore too much Mickey Mouse for a middle schooler).  I could go to school everyday not worrying if people were going to judge my appearance. Sure, there were some love triangles, but everything always worked out and we were all friends again the next day.  You had to resolve your differences quickly because there weren’t many others to talk to!  We also welcomed anyone in with open arms. I’m thankful for all of these people for teaching me what genuine is.

Simple Joys are the Best Joys

Have you ever slept on a trampoline in the middle of the country?  Or been able to see every star in the galaxy?  Have you swam in a stock tank and burned your legs getting in?  Do you know what a stock tank is?  Have you sat on a tailgate for hours with your best friend and talked about your future? Have you driven up and down Main Street with the sole objective being just to see your crush?  Do you know the name of everyone in your neighborhood? Do you get stuck behind tractors on the highway?  Or wave to everyone you see?  Watched a parade that had more participants than people watching and lasted 3 minutes? Have you drank out of a water hose on a sweltering summer day?  Welcome to Small Town, USA.

watching parade morse texas 1987
Catching a parade in 1987 with cousins

 

Party Planners’ Paradise

I tell you what, if you have a big life-changing event happening in your life, you’ll find the best party planners in small towns. Bridal shower, baby shower, graduation party, you name it. They put together these beautiful celebrations for those they have nurtured through the years. Everyone is family here, so everyone is invited and everyone is so genuinely happy for you.  And the food, oh the food.. no one does a potluck like a small town southern Baptist church. I’ve yet to have that yumminess replicated anywhere else in my life.

 

Do you see why growing up in a small town is something I boast about? I’m so thankful for the experiences, the lessons, and the ability to apply those to the way I raise my babies. I can’t give them the small town (yet) but I can give them a good healthy dose of small town values because those are something that no one can take away.

 

To Show Your Morse Pride:

https://www.countyroadnine.com/shop/home-sweet-morse-short-sleeve-t-shirt/

https://www.countyroadnine.com/shop/morse-skyline-short-sleeve-t-shirt/

https://www.countyroadnine.com/shop/toms-place-in-color-short-sleeve-t-shirt/

https://www.countyroadnine.com/shop/home-sweet-morse-photo-paper-poster/

 

 

 

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Travel Quotes to Inspire Every Journey

Everyone loves a good quote that seems to speak only to them. Here, I have compiled 40 of my favorite travel quotes that I believe will speak directly to your adventuring soul. Feel free to use them for any of your projects.. all I ask is that you credit the author.

travel quotes wander

Not all those who wander are lost.  -J.R.R. Tolkien

Travel is the best and probably cheapest graduate school you can buy.  -Tom Freston

By seeing how small the world is, I realize how capable I am. I can conquer anything. Anywhere. Anyone.  -Tawny Lara

Besides, I’m a gypsy at heart and I like to travel around.  -Reba McEntire

If you wish to travel far and fast, travel light. Take off all your envies, jealousies, unforgiveness, selfishness and fears.  -Cesare Pavese

You do not travel if you are afraid of the unknown, you travel for the unknown, that reveals you with yourself.  -Ella Maillart

How often I found where I should be going only by setting out for somewhere else.  -R.Buckminster Fuller

I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.  -Robert Louis Stevenson

Ah! Young people, travel if you can, and if you cannot – travel all the same!  -Jules Verne

Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating

that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die,

it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other,

we may even become friends.

-Maya Angelou

Paris is always a good idea.  -Audrey Hepburn

Like all great travellers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen.  -Benjamin Disraeli

The traveller sees what he sees, the tourist sees what he has come to see. -Gilbert K. Chesterton

Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not.  -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Never go on trips with anyone you do not love.  -Ernest Hemingway

toddler traveler travel quotes inspirational quotes

The best education I have ever received was through travel.  -Lisa Ling

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.  -Saint Augustine

Where ever you go becomes a part of you somehow.  -Anita Desai

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.  -Marcel Proust

Travel changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly,

you leave marks behind, however small.

And in return, life–and travel–leaves marks on you.

-Anthony Bourdain

Now more than ever I realize that I will never be content with a sedentary life, that I will always be haunted by thoughts of a sun-drenched elsewhere.  -Isabelle Eberhardt

Travel far enough, you meet yourself.  -David Mitchell

I was born lost and take no pleasure in being found.  -John Steinbeck

I have found out that there ain’t no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them.  -Mark Twain

Every dreamer knows that it is entirely possible to be homesick for a place you’ve never been to, perhaps more homesick than for familiar ground.  -Judith Thurman

Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.  -Gustave Flaubert

We leave something of ourselves behind when we leave a place, we stay there, even though we go away. And there are things in us that we can find again only by going back there.  -Pascal Mercier

Every traveller has a home of his own, and he learns to appreciate it the more from his wandering.  -Charles Dickens

To move, to breathe, to fly, to float, to gain all while you give

To roam the roads of lands remote… To travel is to live.

-Hans Christian Andersen

I wandered everywhere, through cities and countries wide. And everywhere I went, the world was on my side.  -Roman Payne

Once you have travelled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quietest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey.  -Pat Conroy

Travelling’s not something you’re good at. It’s something you do. Like breathing. You can’t work too much at it, or it feels like work. You have to surrender yourself to the chaos. To the accidents.  -Gayle Forman

To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.  -Aldous Huxley

See the world.  It’s more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask for no guarantees, ask for no security.  -Ray Bradbury

You are still young, free… Do yourself a favor. Before it’s too late,  without thinking too much about it first, pack a pillow and a blanket and see as much of the world as you can. You will not regret it.  One day it will be too late.  -Jhumpa Lahiri

I am free to go wherever I want for the rest of my life.  -Faith Ringgold

The world is full of wonderful things you haven’t seen yet. Don’t ever give up on the chance of seeing them.  -J.K. Rowling

Wanderlust is incurable.  -Mark Jenkins

To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.  -Bill Bryson

Cover the earth before it covers you.  -Dagobert D. Runes


I hope these travel quotes inspire you to plan that next trip, write that next blog post, or get outside and explore more abundantly.  Be sure to join me on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest (links in sidebar) to follow along with my own travelling journey.  Happy trails!

-Mikala

 

Travel quotes compiled from:

www.brainyquote.com

www.goodreads.com

http://manonthelam.com/best-travel-quotes-inspire-wanderlust/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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5 Tips for finding AUTHENTIC vintage t-shirts

The first thing you’ll learn about me is probably that I love Texas (we’re a proud people).  The next thing you’ll learn is that I love all things vintage. True vintage, not late 90s vintage. Quite possibly, my absolute favorite vintage item is t-shirts.  Those shirts so paper thin, so soft, so lived-in, and featuring graphics like Barry Manilow with a beagle (yep, that’s in my closet).

vintage t-shirt, barry manilow

One thing that draws me to vintage anything is the thrill of the hunt. You literally never know when, where, or how you will find that next treasure. Goodwill hunting. Flea markets. Garage sales across the street. Tiny local shops. A random vendor on the street. Online. Possibilities are so endless!

So how do you know you’re getting authentic vintage and not a modern take on vintage?  Most of the time, you’ll just know. In those instances where you are unsure, these 5 tips will help.

1. Check out the tags.

Popular Screen Stars tag
  • Screen Stars- often called the granddaddy of them all. Widely used in the 1970-80s. Very widely circulated and trusted vintage brand.
  • Sportswear- not much is known on the brand, but they were popular in the 60s-90s and heavily circulated.
  • Blank tags or worn tags may mean the shirt is from the early 70s or even before that. Many did not start branding on their tags until the late 70s.
  • Check out this BrandPedia for a super comprehensive guide to brands and what you should look for. It’s pretty interesting, even if you aren’t a vintage t-shirt nerd like me.

2. Leave no store unturned.

  • Thrift store personnel will come to know you by name. Talk to them, ask them when new stuff hits the floor. Be prepared to go there frequently and sift through kids tees on up to adults as some vintage fits are smaller than modern day fits.
  • VIntage clothes shops may be few and far between in some areas, but they are worth the trip if you are ever near one. I have found my best t-shirts at these specialized local shops. They have the eye and you won’t have to sift through any modern tees.
  • Clothing mills, also known as rag houses, are fairly difficult to track down. You can search your area by googling importers, exporters, second hand, or clothing graders. If you do happen to find a mill, get in contact to see if they will even allow you in. If they do, be prepared to dig!

3. Flea Markets are your friend.

  • Depending on where you live, a simple online search for flea markets will yield many results. Some are weekly, others monthly, some depend on the weather.  Talk to dealers and become friends with them. If they know what you’re looking for, they may just give you first dibs.
  • On the road?  Plan your trip in advance and hit up any flea markets along the way. Small town, roadside flea markets sometimes hide some serious treasures. That Manilow tee up there.. roadside find.

4. Online shop for the win.

  • The con to shopping online is that you can’t physically touch your t-shirt. I have gotten burned a couple of times with a shirt that wasn’t truly vintage, but I liked the graphics so it wasn’t a total loss. Do your research and find trusted brands that sell authentic. www.defunkd.com is seriously the greatest resource and they sell tees there too.
  • I have found a few treasures on etsy, goodwill online (yes that’s a thing), and recently Auction Zip. You can find huge lots for reasonable prices, and many times vendors do not know their worth or simply just want to make a quick sale. SkippyHaha is a great shop on etsy, and they use unique models to showcase their shirts.
  • eBay is a great place to shop for vintage t-shirts but you have to be smart. Anyone can claim that a tee is vintage. I only shop a few trusted brands on eBay so that I know what I’m getting. A few great shops to get you started are timetravelteeswax_and_threads, and tshirttimemachine. Also, there are some great lots to be found on eBay.

5. Be persistent, be consistent.

  • If you’re shopping online, bookmark your favorites and check them often. Good tees will go quickly.
  • If you’re shopping locally, be prepared to call or pop in often. You may want to take notes on when the new stock hits the floor so that you can be there when they put out the “new” old tees.
  • Keep note of flea market schedules and make garage/estate sales part of your weekend routine. Always have some cash on hand in case you come across a good sale!
  • Most of all, enjoy the thrill of the hunt and celebrate those t-shirt wins.

*Post includes affiliate links from trusted eBay partners. When you click on links to various merchants on this site and make a purchase, this can result in this site earning a commission. Affiliate programs and affiliations include, but are not limited to, the eBay Partner Network.

 

 

 

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A Quick Hello

Hey y’all, welcome!

The blog part of the site is still a work in progress, but the shop is open for business with new designs being added daily!

This will be a place where hospitality and humor meet.  Where you’ll feel like family. Where old junk comes to life. Where abandoned places tell their story. Where small town life is celebrated. Where simplicity is encouraged.

Stay tuned..