August 26th, 2014

Twelve Months of Memories

I can tell how much it meant to you, you’re still getting tears in your eyes,” General Manager Deb Osza remarked as I shared my experience.

One year ago, I began my role as the Public Relations and Child Nutrition Coordinator for the American Dairy Association Indiana Inc. That muggy August morning, as I walked toward my desk, I never could have imagined what would soon follow.

My first week on the job, I shadowed my boss, Jenni, and as we drove up I-69 toward a Rotary Club meeting in Munice, I asked, “Are these the kind of events you get to do on a regular basis?” Looking back, I clearly had no idea how involved my role within the company would be.

1

Over the course of 365 days, I have traveled down dirt roads I never knew existed, spoke in school classrooms filled with curious minds, attended NFL-sponsored events & sat in the stands at the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing.”

2

I’ve handed out pints of chocolate milk to those looking to Refuel after a run, watched tortoises race while children cheered, toured a food pantry large enough to fit 4 football fields, and walked toward better wellness with a great group of women.

3

I’ve been given a rare opportunity to work for 1200 dairy farming families across the state– spreading the word of nutrition in schools so often overlooked. Through Fuel Up to Play 60, I’ve listened to countless stories from concerned community supporters looking to make a corporation-wide shift toward a healthier lifestyle. With the Indianapolis Colts by our side, I’m grateful for the enthusiasm and gift of great athletes (& mascots) who support our initiative through leadership both on and off the field.

4

Whether it’s on a dairy farm, in a gymnasium, on a news set or standing on turf, no day is ever the same– it’s one of my favorite things about this industry.

5

We are constantly communicating, constantly brainstorming, and constantly activating plans to make this state, and those residing in it, aware of the benefits of dairy in diets.

6

I never realized the impact of this opportunity as the PR & Child Nutrition Coordinator until I was standing on the turf at Lucas Oil Stadium before a game. As I watched 10 of our Fuel Up to Play 60 students get introduced on the jumbotron, our beloved Colts mascot Blue came up to me for a hug, “Hi Brooke!” was all it took for it to sink in. “How did I get here?” was the question that kept resonating that Sunday, and I’m still not sure I have the right answer.

All I know is I am immensely grateful that, each and every day, I get to enter into a building splashed with milk, I get to work alongside 8 gifted individuals, and I get to spread the word of health & wellness.

Has it been a great professional year? Most definitely the best of my life.

(source: WinnersDrinkMilkBlog.com)

August 17th, 2014
on Wednesday of this past week, my parents celebrated 37 years of marriage! 
that’s thirty seven f***ing years!
as i’m quickly approaching my 30th birthday, i’ve been thinking about how much can occur in  30 year time span, and to think they’ve done that plus 7…pretty incredible.
my parents are two of my most favorite people and i am so grateful for their example. 

on Wednesday of this past week, my parents celebrated 37 years of marriage!

that’s thirty seven f***ing years!

as i’m quickly approaching my 30th birthday, i’ve been thinking about how much can occur in  30 year time span, and to think they’ve done that plus 7…pretty incredible.

my parents are two of my most favorite people and i am so grateful for their example. 

August 13th, 2014

After learning my flight was detained 4 hours,
I heard the announcement:
If anyone in the vicinity of gate 4-A understands any Arabic,
Please come to the gate immediately.

Well—one pauses these days. Gate 4-A was my own gate. I went there.
An older woman in full traditional Palestinian dress,
Just like my grandma wore, was crumpled to the floor, wailing loudly.
Help, said the flight service person. Talk to her. What is her
Problem? we told her the flight was going to be four hours late and she
Did this.

I put my arm around her and spoke to her haltingly.
Shu dow-a, shu- biduck habibti, stani stani schway, min fadlick,
Sho bit se-wee?

The minute she heard any words she knew—however poorly used—
She stopped crying.

She thought our flight had been canceled entirely.
She needed to be in El Paso for some major medical treatment the
Following day. I said no, no, we’re fine, you’ll get there, just late,

Who is picking you up? Let’s call him and tell him.
We called her son and I spoke with him in English.
I told him I would stay with his mother till we got on the plane and
Would ride next to her—Southwest.

She talked to him. Then we called her other sons just for the fun of it.

Then we called my dad and he and she spoke for a while in Arabic and
Found out of course they had ten shared friends.

Then I thought just for the heck of it why not call some Palestinian
Poets I know and let them chat with her. This all took up about 2 hours.

She was laughing a lot by then. Telling about her life. Answering
Questions.

She had pulled a sack of homemade mamool cookies—little powdered
Sugar crumbly mounds stuffed with dates and nuts—out of her bag—
And was offering them to all the women at the gate.

To my amazement, not a single woman declined one. It was like a
Sacrament. The traveler from Argentina, the traveler from California,
The lovely woman from Laredo—we were all covered with the same
Powdered sugar. And smiling. There are no better cookies.

And then the airline broke out the free beverages from huge coolers—
Non-alcoholic—and the two little girls for our flight, one African
American, one Mexican American—ran around serving us all apple juice
And lemonade and they were covered with powdered sugar too.

And I noticed my new best friend—by now we were holding hands—
Had a potted plant poking out of her bag, some medicinal thing,

With green furry leaves. Such an old country traveling tradition. Always
Carry a plant. Always stay rooted to somewhere.

And I looked around that gate of late and weary ones and thought,
This is the world I want to live in. The shared world.

Not a single person in this gate—once the crying of confusion stopped
—has seemed apprehensive about any other person.

They took the cookies. I wanted to hug all those other women too.
This can still happen anywhere.

Not everything is lost.

Naomi Shihab Nye (b. 1952), “Wandering Around an Albuquerque Airport Terminal.”

(Source: oliviacirce)

Reblogged from Um, can you not?
August 11th, 2014
When someone spends many decades wrestling with demons, their legacy is the life they made during those struggles & not just their final act.
(via)
August 2nd, 2014
“Beauty is not long hair, skinny legs, tanned skin or perfect teeth. Beauty is the face of who cried and now smiles, beauty is the scar on your knee since you fell when you were a kid, beauty is the circles when love doesn’t let you sleep, beauty is the expression on the face when the alarm rings in the morning, it’s the melted makeup when you have a shower, it’s the laughter when you make a joke you’re the only one who can understand, beauty is meeting his gaze and stopping understanding, beauty is your gaze when you see him, it’s when you cry for all you paranoias, beauty is the lines marked by time. Beauty is what we feel in the inside which also shows outside us. Beauty is the marks the life leaves on us, all the kicks and the caresses the memories leave us. Beauty is letting yourself live.” ― Emma Watson

Beauty is not long hair, skinny legs, tanned skin or perfect teeth. Beauty is the face of who cried and now smiles, beauty is the scar on your knee since you fell when you were a kid, beauty is the circles when love doesn’t let you sleep, beauty is the expression on the face when the alarm rings in the morning, it’s the melted makeup when you have a shower, it’s the laughter when you make a joke you’re the only one who can understand, beauty is meeting his gaze and stopping understanding, beauty is your gaze when you see him, it’s when you cry for all you paranoias, beauty is the lines marked by time. Beauty is what we feel in the inside which also shows outside us. Beauty is the marks the life leaves on us, all the kicks and the caresses the memories leave us. Beauty is letting yourself live.” ― Emma Watson

Reblogged from Population-E
July 31st, 2014

life gets a little crazy from time to time and no one knows that better than the four of us.

between the starting of relationships, the maintaining of relationships and the ending of others, up until last night, it had been months since the four of us were just that.

one year ago, we were four late twenty-somethings with one collective goal in mind, enjoy each other’s company.

considering we had all lived outside of the city at one point or another, it seemed odd that we were all back in indianapolis, finally able to reconnect and see each other whenever the hell we wanted.

of course, 12 months later, we’re realizing that may not always be the case.

as one of us (spoiler alert: not me!) starts planning a move to a country far far away, i’m extremely grateful we had a memorable evening together last night.

i missed it. i missed us.

sometimes my most meaningful relationships are those i never could have predicted, and while i would like to think that back when i was 16 i would’ve known they’d be in my life forever, i never knew how deep of an impact they’d have on my life as i get closer to my thirties.

the point is, after all these years, i’m even more thankful for our crew and know, with 100% of my being, that a move across the world isn’t going to end our bond—

that would be absolutely impossible.

July 21st, 2014
Mostly it is loss which teaches us about the worth of things.
Arthur Schopenhauer, Parerga and Paralipomena

(Source: quotes-shape-us)

Reblogged from A well traveled woman
July 18th, 2014

image

yesterday, i boarded a plane in dallas.

stop being so creepy!" my boss exclaimed as i took a picture of some stowed luggage.

i’m not being creepy, look at this precious luggage tag!" i forced while showing her a picture of the pilot’s bag.

we continued to board the plane feeling good about the pilot in charge— i felt so good about it, i tweeted American Airlines to express my happiness.

image

two hours later & a flight with some minor turbulence, we safely landed in indianapolis to the news of Malaysia flight #17.

if you don’t think i was saying my “thank you’s” for getting to point A to B with no complication, you’d be very very wrong.

over the years, my feelings on flying have changed. 

it used to be such an enjoyable experience—i remember my first flight, sitting toward the front of the plane in those two rows of three seats, the ones facing each other. my brothers and i would fight over who could sit backwards, every time.

and now, flying feels different. i look forward to a safe landing and a smooth ride more than i ever have.

yesterday, when i boarded the plane, i had no idea, obviously, how the rest of the day would turn out, but i’m so grateful for Pilot Elvis.

i’ve never had anxiety when it comes to boarding a plane and i know how many flights travel safely from one side of the country to another, but it’s hard not to think about the possibilities that exist.

i hope my child-like memories connected to the luxury of flying remain, but as more uncontrollable tragedies occur, i’ll be sure to wholeheartedly commend those who are able to take me safely from departure to destination.

July 15th, 2014

i knew i’d moved on when his birthday happened without a disruption to my day. his words no longer affected me and his presence no longer felt. the man i hoped would be in my future, now a boy in my past. dreams filled with desire and anticipation turned to revenge and ignorance, and the present reality filled with adoration and kindness, two things needed but never had.

i knew i’d moved on when hearing his name no longer triggered a gut reaction of disgust, and when i finally accepted the time spent to be a learning moment instead of a waste. perhaps there was too much value on what could have been, because nothing is worth more than the dissolving of an emotional roller coaster and a fresh start on stable foundation.

July 8th, 2014
you get what you settle for.
unknown
Reblogged from grace in place
Hi! I'm Brooke. Indianapolis is my home & I welcome you to my little nook. I'm a twenty-something girl who was born in the land of corn (Okl.), attended undergrad in the true Sea of Red (Neb.), & eventually found her way back home again after picking up a couple letters behind her name (Kan.) while clinging to an adorable Maltipoo named Bentley. Thank you for stopping by & please feel free to leave a comment (or ask a question) under the "Be Kind" tab at the top... xo, B
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