Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Pioneer Woman Book Signing

As the time for The Pioneer Woman's book signing neared, I was back and forth on if I was going to go. The fact that I had to drive over 2 hours, miss one of the Buckaroo's soccer games, and no one else was willing to go that far on a "school night" with me, made me think twice. Bwaaahahaaaa, of course I was going. Ree (we are on a first name basis now, we bonded in the 2 minutes we talked) was my blog inspiration and I even tried once for her to be my best blog friend (more on that soon).
As soon as Big Buckaroo got home, I hopped in the car, turned on music that was not Veggie Tales and hit the road sistah. The traffic was horrendous, I do not miss that part of city life at all. But, I arrived at 6:20, it started at 6, and the line was HUGE, hundreds and hundreds of people.

Let me break down the night for you:

The Gals:
I told Big Buckaroo that I felt weird going by myself, he said you will meet someone in line and be fine. Since I am so introverted and uncomfortable in social situations, I was worried. I jest.

Anyway, as soon as I trekked all the way to the back of the store to find the end of the line, a very sweet young lady walked up behind me. I expressed my appreciation for not being last in line anymore and our friendship began. Thanks Beth for putting up with me the whole night!

When you are in line for 4 hours with people, you get to know them. These are my wonderful new PW stalker friends, I love some stalker camaraderie. There is a homeschool mom, a nurse, the gal who met her husband in the fabric section of Walmart and she does not even sew, an incredible photographer and her sweet daughter, and Beth, a nursing student.

We had a blast, we got a little rowdy and there were many strange looks from those around us. It was so much fun.

The post it notes:
Meet Romy, her name has been changed to protect her identity and for us to blurt out quotes like, "Um, I invented Post-Its". She walked around and gave everyone post it notes so that we could write what we wanted Ree to sign in our books. That would help expedite the process, it did help the 743 people in front of me go through faster.


Then, there were these clever notes along the way. I appreciate the humor and creativeness of those in front of us who thought to encourage us along. (This just in.... I found out that Julie from Eggs and Herbs knows the clever person who did this, her husband Richie!) As if we were going to give up after being there 3 hours, no way, we were invested by then. The gals got tired of me humming the Rocky theme every time we got closer, another hour and I would have broken into "I Will Survive".

Attention Walmart shoppers, there is a Wrangler special on aisle 4:

MM was not deterred as our rowdy group got closer to him. He is a real cowboy that is use to herds of mustangs and cattle racing toward him. Rattle, rattle, here come the cattle.

He was incredibly kind and has a gentle spirit. I contemplated a picture with him as I felt that it would have been disrespectful not only to Ree but to my husband to have a picture taken with just MM and myself. So, I wrangled Christy into getting into the picture. No harm/disrespect in two Christian homeschool moms flanking MM, right?

Meeting Ree:
It was finally my turn, Ree looked up and said hi. She then looked down at the post it note that I had written: To Stephanie, "The Park Wife" , my best blog friend. She looked up and said "Park Wife!" I forgot your live near here". I can not believe that she knew who I was even though I blog about my admiration and respect for her. O.K. you may be thinking, she was just being kind. Yea, I thought that too until she said, "you stopped blogging for a little while didn't you? Have you started back?" Gasp...choke..."um, yes, I got overwhelmed starting homeschooling, a farmers market, um, and my ironing got too piled up, but now I am back at it!"

I told her I was being funny when I wrote that message and she said, "I have no problem writing this, none at all".
Was I a little excited, ya think? I know, a little pathetic. Could my smile be any bigger?

Big Buckaroo, who knows hardly anything about blogging, asked me what all this Pioneer Woman admiration is about, why would I drive that far and stand in line that long. I thought on it for a while and for me, Ree is an example of someone who is like me, a homeschool mom thrown into a situation where you have to adapt and she has done so with creativity, wit and fun. She makes me think that although this season of my life is centered around raising/homeschooling our Buckaroos, that I can do something for myself that feeds my soul.

She is talented, has worked hard and she deserves every bit of what she is reaping right now. I am genuinely so happy for her and her success.

Grateful for Ree's kindness,
The Park Wife

I appreciate my old friend Ree (wait, we aren't old) linking my post, why don't you Follow Me, I know shameless. Come along and experience my life living on a state park!

43 comments:

Brett and Jill said...

I am so sorry that we didn't get to meet. I was amazed at how many people showed up. I started feeling bad and ran home as soon as I got my booked signed. I am so impressed that Ree knew about your blog!!!!

Sisters said...

My friend Christy stood in line with you last night. I am so jealous, but so excited that she got me a signed copy!
Glad I found your blog, and glad to find another homeschool blogger!

Cynthia said...

Had so much fun giggling and goggling over the two wonderful people. You made the line go so much faster. It was great to meet you. Send me an email and I'll send the photos. Cynthia.

Nina said...

I am HURT! First of all I thought I was the "sweet girl" behind you in line & now I feel all kinds of disrespectful because I had my picture made with MM without a chaperone!!! Now I know all I am in this life is "the gal who met her husband at walmart".

I had a great time with you crazy gals @ "The WalMarts" (ReeSpeak). I will add you to my blog list!!

Dawn said...

Sigh...

Wish I could have been there with you. I'm hoping to see her when she comes to Austin. Unfortunately, (based on my attempted phone conversations with them about tickets, etc.) I don't think the little bookstore here is prepared for the PW craziness that is going to descend upon them that evening.

What an awesome evening. And for the record, I would have SO made the drive with you. Let me know if you want to see her again - you can come with me to the Austin signing! LOL

Life with the Akin Clan said...

AAAAAUUUUUUUUGGGGGGHHHHHHHH!!! I am sooooo jealous!! So jealous! There is nothing like standing in line over a shared interest and meeting people! I love it! Thanks for sharing!!

Tracie said...

Congratulations!! I am fighting back my jealousy even as I type this!!

Marge said...

I would have most certainly driven with you to see PW! I am jealous. Love the picture of you two! Bet you gained a bunch of new readers from standing in line.....and you can say that PW reads your blog! How fun!

thelumberjackswife said...

Pioneer Woman is not coming anywhere near me-no fair! I can't believe you got to meet MM, too! And I CAN'T BELIEVE SHE READS YOUR BLOG. Amazing!
Thanks for stopping by my blog-I hope you will be back. I will add yours to my reader-I enjoyed your story!
Thanks!
Taylor

Mildred said...

Thank you so much for visiting and leaving a comment so I could browse your lovely blog. How exciting to attend the book signing. I just came from another blogger friend, Becky @ Looking Thru the Eyes of Love, who apparently attended the same signing. Way to go!

Becky said...

OMG!!! Let me say first.....IT'S A SMALL WORLD!!! I just noticed one of my blogging friends, Mildred, just commented on your blog.. How funny!!!

Girl, I loved your post today....you are a scream~!!! Would loved to have met you last night, but I was in ga ga land!!! I get star struck soooooo easy!!!! My daughter Cortney's friends were laughing at me because I could not wipe the smile off my face!!! As you can see in my post pictures you can pretty much count all 32 of my teeth, how embarrassing.

I'm just so tickled to know Arkansas has several bloggers. The girls in line behind us were also bloggers and it was so fun to talk to them.

What a night to remember!!! You said you drove two hours.....where are you located?

Talk to you soon, stop by for a visit anytime!!!

Beth said...

Aw, you called me "sweet"! My mother might have something to say about that...:)
It was so wonderful to meet you, and everyone else. I can't imagine standing in line for three-and-a-half hours in a Wal-Mart with any other group of ladies. And I never heard what PW said to you - that is so awesome that she reads your blog! I love that she wrote that in your book. I'll email you for a copy of the group picture - that is definitely a keeper.

The Park Wife said...

Girls, I seriously doubt Ree is sitting around saying I wonder what The Park Wife is up to, I think I will go read her blog right after I put one more load of Wranglers in the wash. I am sure she knows me because I have been following here for about 2 1/2years faithfully and commenting on her posts. Plus, we did email back before she had someone handling her email for her. I am sure that is why she knew me/remembered me. Or, maybe she is wondering what my boys are up to and planning on calling me to bring them up to play with her kids at the ranch. It was a fun night and she is as wonderful and kind as I imagined.
The Park Wife

Anonymous said...

I really respect how your respected your husband and Ree!!!!!
The time spent in line up sounds like it was an absolute FUN experience and you made new friends.
signed
Theresa in Alberta

Lauren Kelly said...

Thank you so much for the sweet comment you left. Appreciate it so much. Don't be a stranger!!! :)

And how fun that you got to meet Ree!! :)

BubblesandMoney said...

I am glad to meet another Arkansan blogger. I will be reading your blog too! Thanks for the comment.

Leanna said...

Oo that sounds exciting. I saw her featured in Southern Living Nov 09 and somehow I knew she was a homeschooler. =) Did that 2 hr drive happen to my direction??

Mom2Toribug said...

Hey Park Wife!! I am so glad that you finally got to meet your BFF
;-). Ree is coming to Atlanta in December and I want to go sooo bad, but she is coming on a Monday night, about an hour from my house. I just don't know if I can slip out of work in time to get there. I have the cookbook and have read it cover to cover already. I plan on making Betsy's Penne Pasta tonight. Should be good. I am going to place an order for a couple of more cookbooks for Christmas gifts as well. Sounds like you had a blast despite standing in line so long and made some new friends. I am so jealous!!

Coloradolady said...

If I even thought for one minute Ree knew about my blog I might have fainted right there on the floor....Truth.....How wonderful for you....you looked so cute with her....I'd have that pic framed.....enjoyed reading your entry...Have a great week!

yardsailor said...

How wonderful for you, to get to meet your inspiration! No, I don't think your smile could get any wider.

Valarie Lea said...

Ahhhhhh I can not believe you touched MM!!!!!! I can only hope and pray he is in Nashville when I go and stalk... I mean go and see Ree!!!! :)

sarabethjones said...

It sounds like it was a great night - I'm so sorry I missed her!

Janet said...

I met Ree in Phoenix and had a similar experience...only she knows my sister well (Miz Boo, photography contributor). I greeted her and told her I was Miz Boo's sister and she said..."Janet"!! I almost keeled over. =)

Melissa said...

What a fun experience at the book signing! I am seriously contemplating going on a 3 hour drive to see her when she comes to Texas. haha ;)
My dad is the superintendent of a ginormous County park in California...and would be in hog heaven if my mom agreed to live on the park. ;)
I will follow your blog for sure... I'd love to hear about all of your park adventures! :)

LuGene said...

Steph,

I so wish I could have gone with you!!! I love the book, and made the Chicken Spaghetti already; much better than my old standby!

You are a great friend and super blogger! I love reading your blog!

♥georgie♥ said...

i am extremly jealous too!!!

Looks like a wonderful time even if it was long...

Indie said...

Ok! I will follow you!

Loved your story,especially the part "rattle, rattle, here come the cattle.

You made me spit my morning coffee everywhere!

Cliff said...

TheParkWife - Thanks for suffering with the rest of us at The Back of the Line. It just made meeting her even that much sweeter, didn't it? I'm amazed at what a great attitude she had - it must not be easy to be that upbeat after seeing all those people! I see that you have chickens - we do too, although we're in the "city". :) So neat to see so many other "like-minded" folks!

Melissa Stover said...

i'm following! i was there too. which direction are you from in arkansas? i'm south east.

momto5minnies said...

It was a lot of fun. I too tried to get another mom to come with me, but everyone seemed to be BUSY so I ended up taking 4/5 of my girls. Thankfully after 90 minutes, my husband came and rescued 3 of the smaller girls. I needed to hold onto the oldest so that she could snap some photos ;)

I wish i would have thought to have PW put momto5minnies on my book. Oh well!!!!

Great cover of the night!

Lisa said...

I think that's what made her succesful... the humility. We are all so over the haughty, shallow lives, of Hollywood. Give me a gal, whose adapted and overcome! Hear...Hear!

Patty said...

Hi! I followed the link from PW's site. Love the pics! I'm driving 4 hours to see her in Nashville. I hope the line's not that long! Can't wait to meet new PW fanatics like me in line. Sounds like so much fun! The hubs and I are staying the night in Nashville, and making a little mini vacation out of it. It will be SO GOOD to get away! :)

I'm following you now btw :)

Lisa said...

Saw your mention on PW this morning and immediately called my hubman at Central Office to ask who the ranger is at ____State Park, I recognized the courthouse. I said, "I found his wife's blog referenced on PW this mornin!" I'm sure happy to have found a blog chock full of State Park stories! And cute kids. Etc. Etc.

Kelli said...

Hey Stephanie!
I feel like I'm emailing a celebrity! I mean, you KNOW Pioneer Woman!
That truly is awesome about her mentioning you on her blog and I think that is something to be thankful for. I know I would be.
I can't wait to be driving 4 hours to go see her and then logging the details as well. And I totally agree with you~ she is such an inspiration!
As are you! Your blog is too cute. And I can't wait to read more! I'm following you now!
Thanks for stopping by my blog! I'm glad you did!
Tell PW I said hey! Wink. Wink. =)!
Blessings friend.
Kelli

Lisa said...

Oh that is just way too awesome. I am very happy for you meeting someone that inspires you, someone that gave you such a high that day! Ok, now back to the ironing huh? (congrats on such a wonderful day!)

Pretty Paper Book said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog! I had so much fun meeting Ree too! Looks like we both traveled a little out of our way to meet her!
How fun that you have a photo of MM and that you got Ree to sign "Best Blog Friend". I'm so jealous!

SugarBritches said...

Great post on the event. The line was horribly wrong but I met some really nice people and of course saw MM in the flesh. Yum!

Great blog, will be visiting again.

Mrs. Accountability said...

I felt the same way, grinning the whole night at the chance to meet PW. I told her it was my high point of my year getting to meet her, to laughs from the ladies behind me in line. Well, I guess I have a really boring life I said, but seriously I was so happy all day long just anticipating getting to meet her. We got to meet Missy and PW's mother in law in Phoenix. All wonderful, sweet and beautiful women!! I wrote up the story of my night at my blog here: http://tr.im/Ep5e

Christy Harris said...

What a sweet post about a VERY long night/line....I am having fun living THROUGH you guys because despite my constant begging...Ree has not agreed to come over to Germany and sign books in my PX (Post Exchange) over here. Army wives must scare her! Maybe we can get MM to come over....he's pretty brave!

Donalyn said...

I'm so glad ree mentioned you - I comepletely lost rack of your blog in one of my massive hard drive failures earlier this year. Love this post and so glad you enjoyed the evening so much. I don't think she plans on coming to rural upstate NY though...

Susan said...

Oh! I love your post! Best one off of Ree's list yet :O) I wish I could meet her!

Amy said...

I clicked over here from PW! I'm sorry I didn't get to meet you, as I was in that line also! It was a long nght, but so much fun. If you care to see my "take" you can do so here http://amy-shiningmylight.blogspot.com/2009/11/pioneer-woman-cooks-book-signing.html. It doesn't say, due to cetain people who might read my blog, but I also had her sign a book for me. It's a gift for my Sis-in-Law. Since I needed a gift for her, I could only afford to get 1 for now, I had to get hers and wait to get mine. lol

The Howes Family said...

linked over from PW. Now I must follow you. I really am only following you because of your HUGE smile when you met her. Love it.
I said to myself, "Self, she chessy grins like you when your excited, you must follow her."
Can't wait to go back and read more.