Find Her.


Find the one that makes you question everything you have ever known.

Find her, you know, the one at first glance steals your entire attention. The one that makes you do everything in you being to get her attention and steal her affection.

Find the one that turns you into your grandad; writing love letters back and forth like you are in a faraway place during the Great War. The one that makes you look at love stories in a new way.

Find her. The one that drives you absolutely insane but calms every nerve in your body. Th one that pulls out an old fashioned romance that the world so desperately wants to cover up. The one where dates are frequent and being kissed good night at the door is a known.

Find the girl that has the most beautiful look about her when she has messy hair and sleepy eyes, or is wearing an old ball cap and your ragged t-shirt because that is her favorite outfit. The one that, when she laughs, the whole world stops and stares. The one that makes you want to go on any adventure when you look into her sparkling, mischievous eyes.

The one that sets your soul on fire with the brush of her hand against yours.

Find the one that is a mystery and makes your heart skip beats and the very sight of her makes you re-gain those nervous butterflies that you try to control. The one that makes you desire intellectual and emotional attraction far before physical. The girl that makes you lust after her, but not for her body, but for her thoughts.

Find the girl that buries her heart into her passions so deeply that you begin to fall in love with her beautiful and complicated self.

Find her, and do not lose her.

Fight for her. Seek her. 

For there is an old fashioned romance out there for each and every one of you. But it isn’t one that is mediocre by nature. No. It is hard work, but once you find her, you will experience love that you have only heard about in stories.

“She wasn’t created for everybody, her heart wasn’t made for everyone. Her love won’t be enough for just any man.” –Pierre Jeanty


-Hope Sorrells


Thank you isn’t enough.


Memorial Day- is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while serving in the country’s armed forces.

Ma’am, I hate to be the one to inform you, your son will not be coming home.” “Sir, your wife, she battled hard, and saved many lives. She will be remembered.” “This was in his stuff, I thought you would want this back. He had your proposal all planned out.” 

. . . . .

Small sniffles, a mournful cry. 21 gun salute. A lone trumpet plays ‘Taps’. Folding of a flag. The hand off to the family. The casket lowered. A young son salutes his fallen hero who he calls, “Dad”. A wife clings to the flag that was placed in her hands. All is quiet.

Memorial Day, a time of remembrance, of reflection for the chosen ones who went home to meet their maker far sooner then some wish. Men and women who are the definition of sacrifice, freedom, and bravery. They give up much to keep us safe on home soil while they head off to foreign lands to live, fight, and keep the mindset that they will make it home. But there are some, who although their fight is mighty and their heart is brave, do not ever make it home. Some will be returning home under the cover of our beloved Old Glory, others will remain on that very foreign soil, that they so desperately fight on to come home.

As this Memorial Day comes and goes, one thing is for certain, thank you isn’t enough. There are no words to describe how a heart feels when they watch a wife mourn her husband or a mom her son, but it’s even harder to describe knowing that that death was a sacrifice for the safety of their family, and for all of us Americans. Thank you isn’t enough for the men and women who watch their friends lose their lives right beside them, knowing that some, wish it could have been them instead. Thank you isn’t enough for the ones who became a POW, who were trapped by the enemy and although knew God could move mountains, they knew that they wouldn’t be coming home. So thank you isn’t enough. Thank you isn’t enough for the restless hearts of families whose loved ones were M.I.A. And even after 40 years, they still take a hopeful glance up and every holiday gathering to see if a familiar and loving face comes walking up to the front porch. Thank you isn’t enough to the families who have to step out of a room when the lone trumphet starts to play a familiar, sad tune. Thank you isn’t enough.

There is a time for memories to be summoned up from the depths of our souls. Memories of loved ones, gone far to early, memories of the men and women who lost their lives so that you could wake up, once again, free.

Today is about cherishing the ones who came home, but also for remembering the ones who never made it home to embrace in that first emotional hug after a long deployment.

We know, you all are watching over us, everyday because as they saying goes, “the flag doesn’t fly because of the wind, but flies from every last breath of a fallen soldier,” and so I say,

Thank you, even though, thank you isn’t enough.

In loving memory of, Melvin Douglas Seagraves, M.I.A., 1972, Gulf of Tonkin, USS Tripoli. Love you Uncle Doug and will see you again.

                                                   -Hope Sorrells

Can I do this?


Can I do this?

This question has constantly been crossing my mind and my heart since, about March. March 6th to be exact. March 6th at 1:20pm to be even more exact. It was the moment that I heard, “Whom shall I send and who will go for me?” and I said, “Here I am. Send me.”

Now, when I first gave that bold statement, I was in… well… shock. My heart uttered the words, my brain and my mouth were definitely trying to catch up. I had accepted a position with AgriCorps, a non-profit organization, that will allow me to pursue my love of teaching and agriculture in a very un-conventional classroom.

I will be heading off to Ghana, West Africa in early August. 

I have always had a passion for loving people, travel, agriculture, and teaching. I found all four of those loves in the middle of a Honduran village in March of 2012. {(Does anyone else see the re-occuring theme of March being the game changer?)} I had the opportunity to be a part of the Readership Ambassador program at West Texas A&M University where myself, along with 18 of my peers ventured off to an adventure of a lifetime. In the Honduran village, they had just recently built a one-room school house and I saw children ECSTATIC to be coming to school and learning.

After that experience, I knew that I would be heading off to another country to teach Ag. But in the midst of my big dreams, I had a little smaller accomplishments happening. I survived student teaching, an experience that I loved, accepted a Graduate Assistant position back at WTAMU, and walked the stage with my Bachelors of Science in Agricultural Education. I didn’t forget about the global teaching, but it wasn’t a priority, at least not in those moments in my life. Until November of 2016. I was introduced to AgriCorps by another grad student and I, out of curiosity, went to their website and began reading the blogs. My heart instantly swelled, I had tears rolling, and I heard my first small whisper of, “Whom shall I send? Who will go for me?”

And me, being the stubborn, sometimes too bullheaded, of a person ignored it. The words, “There is no way. I can’t do that. Sounds cool. But I can’t do it,” instantly filled up, what I thought was my heart, but was actually just my head. I continued to fight it, even as the recruiter kept trying to find a time to call and chat with me, I still fought the small “Whom shall I send? Who will go for me?”

Fast forward to February, I finally stopped all my emotions and listened to the mission about AgriCorps and I got off the phone, looked at my mom and said,

“I am doing this.”

But after, once you get into your own thoughts, slow down and really think; doubt quickly and quietly sets in. I began asking,

“Can I do this?” Can I leave for one year? Leave behind family, friends, the lifestyle I know, the teaching comforts I love? Can I really step out of that comfort zone of mine and venture to West Africa to Ghana and teach a discipline I so love and adore? Can I even gather my own thoughts enough to explain to people, who I know will look at me like I am quite crazy, and bear my transparency and show them my heart and my passion for this?

Often, this life gives us more opportunities then we actually accept, and I am no different. I am given moments that are small and seem insignificant but in the long run and in reality, they are game changers. Opportunities do not all look the same. Some come barging through a closed door, loud and forceful; others are more polite, they knock and simply wait. Yet others, the ones that will break you out of that comfort zone, make you question everything you know, are the ones that don’t knock or barge in. They wait, until you are ready to walk up to the door, turn the handle, open it up and invite them in. Those are the opportunities to look for and embrace. The opportunities that will turn your world completely upside down. Whether that is trying a new restaurant for the first time, traveling 2 hours away with best friends, leaving all that you know and love and packing up a years worth of items into four bags, or simply going out on your own for a vacation you desperately need.

Find those moments of “Can I do this?” and do them. Don’t let fear or doubt discourage you, fight through. Find your moment to test every status quo you have been taught, to find your boundaries and make them just a little bit bigger.

For me, it is changing my comfort zone from the shape of Texas to Honduras and now to Africa.

-Hope Sorrells

Rodeo Way.


Stands filling up, quickly. The ‘pump up’ music playing. A bronc starts dancing in the chute. Fresh arena dirt and fresh livestock. 

The excitement is felt, seen and heard. An electricity that is circulating throughout the stock, contestants, and spectators. And then, the announcer begins to speak…

He doesn’t begin by giving the statistics of the riders, or rant about the stock contractors, no. The announcer begins with “This is the home of the free and the land of the brave and because of that we want to honor those who give up their freedom so we can enjoy ours. Every Marine, Sailor, Airman, First responder, please stand up.” Some slower than others, stand. Stand in remembrance of their fellow men and women, stand in remembrance of the commitment they made to this country. Stand to be honored. And as each one stands up, the electricity of the building, changes, ever so slightly, as everyone, begins clapping.

Then, the announcer says “Now, would everyone stand as we honor Old Glory.”

Everyone, stands.

And as Old Glory enters the arena, astride a horse the words are said “Before we honor Old Glory and all she stands for, we would like to give thanks and send a layer of protection over everyone tonight. Now, I know that this country is a home of the freedom of religion, and here in rodeo, we do not care who you give worship to or where your place of worship is. There is  no judgment to who you call lord. But as for me, and our rodeo, we would like to send up a prayer to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, so would everyone please bow their heads and go to the Lord in prayer with me.”

And just like that, every head was bowed, and every eye was closed.

That is the funny thing about rodeo, no matter if you are a contestant or a spectator, you, for that one performance, night or weekend, become apart of the rodeo family. No matter what religion you are, what country you are from, or what political views you have, all are united in that same place, under the same prayer to the Lord God, and under the same ideas that this country is the Home of the Free and the Land of the Brave because of the many men and women who sacrifice their life to allow that to happen.

The rodeo way is unique, regardless if it is a PRCA sanctioned event or a WRCA event; every single one of them begins by honoring the men and women who served, that glorious red, white and blue flag, and finally, God. Old Glory sits astride a horse, the animal that is so valued in the rodeo world.

It isn’t to be a part of a show, it a simple reminder, mostly, to the rodeo contestants, the stock contractors, the men and women who put on the event, that without our Military personnel and the Lord, they wouldn’t get to do what they love each and every day.

But it is also a reminder to all of us, that no matter where we sit, or our background, that you can celebrate, even just one night, that we are all blessed in this life, and that every day isn’t always promised.

We all become one, with an arena of dirt in front of us, an electricity circulating through us, and the start of a night of adrenaline, pure talent, and raw power…

that is The Rodeo Way.

-Hope Sorrells

When the rain finally fell.



And the heavens opened up and the rain fell.

The fires roared, the land was charred or left barren, animals were lost, livelihoods were shattered, yet that small glimmer of tomorrow being a new day helped many press on.

Numerous people have been begging, praying, screaming, trying to make deals in order for the rain to fall. The same moment that Christ had, while hanging on the cross, of, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” has been on the lips of many and on the hearts of all. While donations of hay, feed, water, and fencing supplies are coming in; the rebuilding time has officially began, and also the threat of more fires. Fires restarted again, in the Texas Panhandle, Oklahoma, and Kansas, and, first responders were able to extinguish those. But that threat is still ever present, lingering within the land and the people.

But, a new sound is being heard… not the rage of a fire and the cackling of grasslands being taken over, but the soft pitter-patter that refreshes the soul and the mind. Rain is falling. The land is still damaged, hearts are still weary, but the promise of a new day and new tomorrow is felt in every drop and heard in every patter.

The land, the livestock, the livelihoods, and the people have needed this refreshing moment, and now it finally has arrived. Some would say too late, but others would say, right on time.

The reminder that all is well, all will be well, and all will continue to be well. As the rain falls, you can’t help but sit still for a moment and thank God, thank all who has been a part of this journey. Both near and far, young and old, able hands and bodies, have come together and united to provide some form of hope. The rising out of the ashes is being followed by the downpour of love and courage, strength and motivation.

Ranch rodeos in honor of the ones who lost their lives during the fires have been held and are underway, giving many the opportunity to laugh, cry, and get rowdy; a time to repair their weary and worn hearts. To let the ashes of the pain extinguish out and the dust settle. New births of calves are being seen and the bottle calves who may not have had a fighting chance on their own, are now happy and healthy, surely thankful for the patient hands that helped them to press on.

This rain is a reminder that we are not the ones who hold tomorrow, we are the ones that care for the land and the livestock and are blessed each day by that wonderful job. We are all a part of a greater plan, more glorious than any could comprehend. The joys of tomorrow are being heard across the Texas panhandle, Oklahoma, and Kansas, today, because as our hearts are being rejuvenated by the refreshing noise of rain is being heard.

So, we will press on and always remember what it felt like when the rain finally fell.


                                                                                                            -Hope Sorrells



out of the ashes, We Rise.


“I have lost everything.”

“Out of the 812 head of cows, they had to put down 725 of them.”

“Calves are burned up on one side, and just fine on the other.”

“I have already found 15 more animals to put down this morning. I am tired of killing.”

“As I was fighting the fire, I knew the direction it had turned to. My house, my property.”

“My family runs 6 generations deep on this land.”

“Only 6 steers and a few heifers were spared.”

The reality of the fires that hit Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Colorado. Ranchers finally, finding time and energy to assess the damage that had been done. Within minutes and hours, ranches were scorched, livestock, pets, and wildlife had no where to go, and the dynamics of the ranching communities were forever changed.

But, within a matter of minutes and hours, communities, neighbors, friends, regions, areas, states, and even a nation began to come together; to unite. Drop off points in the Texas Panhandle are overflowing with mountains of bottles of water, and loads after loads of hay. Donations that were selflessly given, time and effort spent, humbly, to provide care for livestock and ranchers, alike.

“A drop of 80 squares bales of alfalfa just came.”

“If we get anymore bottles of water, we are going to be able to fill water trucks to water livestock!”

“Every bit of these donations are going to be used.”

“I have a semi and a load of hay, where do I need to take it?”

“Hi, I am from Vermont, and want to help! Where and what do people need the most?”

Thousands of people and dollars coming together to help to rebuild the foundation that America is built off of. A delicate culture that will need more cultivation, now, than ever before. 

The ranching lifestyle is a more romantic profession. Not the love kind of romance. But more of, an ebb and flow of give and takes, life and death, good and bad days, the promise of tomorrow, but living in today because tomorrow is not always promised. It is the memories on the walls of the first homestead of a ranch, the whispers off of sorting pens that your great-great granddad built. It is the the first stand of a newborn calf, the bawl of a momma who has lost her baby, the creek of a saddle room door. The thought of “if these walls could talk”, the cultivation of the land so that it continues to provide for the animals that the Lord has chosen you to take care of. And, it is the moments of major destruction and devastation that the ranching lifestyle becomes the most romantic.

There is no day off to mourn, except for the ones who lost their lives during the fires, there  is no day off to be down on the fact that land and livestock and lives were taken. No. These men and women, woke up, prepped their hearts and minds and set off to rescue the ones that made it through the blaze. The ones, surrounded by ash, that were able to make it through. They went on scavenging their property for animals, and save-able pieces of fencing, barns, maybe even a halter or two. Calves that were orphaned are now being bottle fed, cows without their calves are having to be milked to release the pressure off their bags. Horses are being doctored, wildlife is being fed off of people’s back porches. Life and death, the good and bad, come with tired eyes, giving hearts, and strong, calloused hands.

“This is a pretty harsh world we live in. And Mother Nature can sure be relentless more times than not. And that’s why I would say I’m drawn to our culture. Our lifestyle. No matter what this old world puts on us or tries to take from us we overcome it time and time again. This is proved throughout our history. From the livestock lost to lives of loved ones, before and in my time, that have been cut short. I know these times will come to pass and we will dust off and keep going. Never forgetting these times.”

The heritage that was lost during the fires will continue to live on through the men and women. The generation of cattle blood line that were taken, the thousands of acres of pastures that were consumed, the homesteads that had been on the property long before cars and cell phones, now just a past piece of history that stays in the minds of the ranchers, cowboys, and cowgirls. The rebuilding process will be long and hard, days of bad will intercept some of the days of good. But the hope and faith that has and will continue to be provided will give the strength to look forward to the days to come because…

Out of the ashes, we rise.

–Hope Sorrells

The Stock Show Look.


For many of us, stock show was a part of our lives for many years. The road trips, the long hours in line, and finally show day. This process is long, starting with the day you decide what animal species you are going to show to, finally, the long walk back to the truck after your final show and animal. Since the process is long: Ag Teachers, County Agents, parents, and stock show-ers all go through certain stock show “looks” that fluctuate as often as the seconds, minutes, and hours devoted to stock shows. The BEST looks you get are during the actual stock show. They go something like this…

Number One. Early Morning Sleepies: This look consist of girls with no make-up, and guys with messed up hair. They have a weird lost look that appears around 15 seconds after exiting the truck to begin the long walk to the grounds. They appear lost, with mouths gapping open, just a tad bit. Yawns come in frequent spurts and they are constantly rubbing their eyes while trying to feed, walk in steers, or un-muzzle their lambs. Amid this look, the stock show-er cannot hear what their Ag teacher/Agent/parent are saying. Their ears have yet to wake up, and the noises that they hear range from Charlie Brown’s teacher to being underwater. The look is accessorized with an array of bagging shirts, wash pants, and most likely comfy shoes. The hair is messy and fluffy and there is still early morning sleepies in the corner of the eye.

Number Two. Getting Ready Action: This look is one that you will never miss. There is a frantic, panicky look plastered to the face of the show-er and adult. They are quickly changing shirts, wiping down pigs, pulling steers away from the stalls. There is last minute water sprays, clip movements, and the smell of every show product because your perfume. Eyes are wide, mouth is in a straight line, and focus creeps up. Eyebrows set in, and stock show mode has started. Ag teachers and County agents have this same look, but they are on the side lines. They watched, arms crossed, eyes like laser beams between the judge and their student. Nothing can usually break their concentration.

Number Three. Awkward Sleepy Judgement: This look comes after the show-er has made their way through the first two looks. It is the third look that occurs during stock show. This happens while sitting at their pens or sitting in the stands. It comes with furrowed eyebrows and an intense side gaze with a crinkled lip or nose. They are judging anything from the color of someone’s shoes, to the corn dog being eaten next to them to the pigs getting to eat before they do. They usually follow the item or person they are judging and make it so noticeable that everyone around them can pretty much read their mind… but they have no idea they are doing it. It is an awkward sleepy motion that is out of sheer reflex. There is no back thoughts, rhyme or reason. It just kind of shows up and stays plastered to their faces.

Number Four. Walking Dead: This look. Oh this look, is the best to spot. It begins with the person slowly zoning out, and there is no warning. The zoning has no bias and can occur mid bite of a burger, mid-conversation, mid-life talk with the ag teacher or parent, mid-butt chewing from an angry momma. The eyes begin to glaze over, the mouth open, full concentration is on the nothingness that is currently going on in their brain. You can hardly snap them out of this; there is no way too. You must leave them be, let them be taken into the walking dead zombie look. Sugar, coffee, a corn dog, or a good slap to the back of the head may help, however, may the odds be ever in your favor.

Number Five. Victory Is Ours: Lastly, this look is a mixture of the previous four. You are rubbing sleepies out of your eyes, while a frantic, panic look is in the eyes, with the crinkle of the judgement nose, and an odd stare. All of that is followed by a grin that creeps up from the inner being of the soul. It starts small and then spreads across the face and lights up the whole body. This occurs when the show-er has won its class, or even breed. It gets even crazier if a Champion or Reserve Champion title is won. The is accompanied by jumping, screaming, shrieking like a dying witch, intense high fives, aggressive grunts and fist pumps, and then some petty, sleepy tears.

All of this happens, multiple times, over multiple shows, and it is a vicious cycle, over and over again. Sad thing is, it is like crack to anyone who loves the livestock industry. After the end of every stock show season, there is multiple conversations that all end in the same answer, “I will not do this next year,” and every year, an animal is bought, a truck is packed, and the saying “We are stock show bound” is posted on social media.

The vicious, yet glorious cycle of stock show, the ones that love it, and the looks that are always around.

Ya know, the stock show looks.