The Ultimate Girl's Day

A little over two years ago, during a small group ice breaker, someone posed the familiar question, "if you could spend a few hours with anyone (and it can't be Jesus), who would it be?"

We circled the room to hear everyone's answers, "John Calvin - I'd love to hear about the reformation through his eyes." "C.S.Lewis - favorite author, his writing has really impacted me." "The Apostle Paul - would love to really know what that thorn in his flesh was." And so forth.

And then it was my turn. . . "Pioneer Woman," I said, "she's a blogger, named Ree Drummond, that lives on a working cattle ranch. I've been reading her for a few months now."
"There are cows. And horses. And cowboys. And chaps.
"She writes about their lives and her siblings and her transition from city life to country life.
*more silence*
"And, Um, I think it's all really fascinating. Oh, and she cooks and homeschools and takes great pictures. I want to hang out there. At the ranch. For just a few hours."

Okay, I know, it was a moment of shallowness for me. I have them with some regularity and I'm okay with that.
My blogger crush on Pioneer Woman started when I stumbled upon her blog sometime in 2007. The day I found her she had written a post about her brother Mike, who is cognitively delayed, with such humor and love. It was clear that she delighted in him and respected him. And I respected that. I connected with this for obvious reasons but quickly found myself enamoured with so many other aspects of her world. My fascination with PW has continued over the last two years as her readership has grown exponentially.

Soooo, naturally, when I found out she was going to be in Atlanta to sign her new cookbook, "Pioneer Woman Cooks," I saved the date. I also grabbed two friends to join me.

One, Caroline, another PW devotee, and the other, Dorothy, a PW virgin. Caroline and I knew we would convert her. We set out from Columbia at 6.45 am and arrived at Border's in Atlanta at 10.15. We were thrilled to be among the first one hundred to pick up our bracelets! That meant we would be among the first called to line up to meet the woman of the hour.

With several hours to kill before we had to report back to Border's we did what any well adjusted, estrogen filled, trio of women free from their daily responsibilities would do. We shopped and ate. Ikea, Trader Joe's (where, by the way, my two friends were carded for buying alcohol and I WAS NOT -this is important for you to know as you read how the rest of the day unfolds), DSW, Anthropology, and a delicious mexican meal.

It was a fabulous day and the cherry on top was meeting The Pioneer Woman.

Ree has the sweetest voice and personality, she was just delightful. And then. Then, something happened.

While Caroline (in the white sweater) and Dorothy and I were standing in front of Ree's table gathering our books Ree said to Caroline, while gesturing to me, "This is your mother?"

Simultaneously the following comments were made:

Me: What?! Mother? No!

Caroline: No, no, no, she's my friend!

Dorothy: *laughter*

Ree: Wait. No, nooo. Of course you're not. You would've been, what, like 12(?) when you had her! No, It was a misunderstanding.

Ahem. Way to recover, Ree.

Of course. . . I forgave her. I mean, she couldn't have possibly really taken a good look at me, right? Don't answer that.

After gathering our books our next stop was to meet Ree's sister, Betsy, and her friend Hyacinth, who were handing out PW t-shirts. They had been chatting it up with the people ahead of us and did not hear the, ahem, misunderstanding concerning my relationship to Caroline.

Aren't they super cute?

While the three of us were picking out our t-shirt sizes and gabbing with these two lovelies Betsy said to Dorothy, gesturing to me, "is this your mother?" (I know what you're thinking. . . "she had to have heard what just went down with Ree. She's playing off that." I assure you she did not hear any of it.)

Again, in unison the following comments ensued:

Me: What the hell? Really? No. . . do I look that bad tonight? Your sister just asked if I was Caroline's mother!

Dorothy: No, we're friiiiends.

Caroline: *laughter*

Betsy: Wait? What? Noooo. . .

Hyacinth: No, no. . . You look like 'A' mother, not 'HER' mother. 'A' mother, NOT 'her' mother. Right, Betsy? You are 'A' mother, right?

Me: (laughing) Um, yeah, that's making it worse Hyacinth.

We all laughed. Some of us more nervously than others. Then we left, me feeling every bit my 40 years. Plus 20.

It was such a fun day! No, really, it was. :) I wouldn't change a minute, or word, of it! But I do think Ree, Betsy, and Hyacinth need to invite me to the Ranch for a girls weekend so they can experience my youthfulness.


Ctina said...

Well, like I've said before: "If I look as good as you do at 40 (really 40?!) then I'll be a happy satisfied woman!" So there. :)

toddandholli said...

I'm so jealous, I just love PW and use her recipes all the time. I'm glad you got to go and have a great time, I'm just as jealous about Trader Joe's, seriously when we are in Atlanta we take a cooler and stock up. I'm still eating my Joe Joe's!

Ctina said...

Oh and your comment about it being a "moment of shallowness" is false. Its a moment of normalness. None of those people would really want to sit down with Calvin or Luther...they really want Brad Pitt and Colin Firth :p

Lark said...

Glad you had a fun girls day. I have got to plan a girls trip sometime, sounds like such a great idea. And I agree with Christina's first comment :o)

Amy J in SC said...

That's too funny! Sounds like y'all had a grand time. My friend and I were right behind y'all on the road. We left from Greenville around 8:15. Glad we got there when we did.

P.S. You certainly don't look like anyone that is over 10 mother. You know that just killed Ree - she probably thought about that later. It would be worth an invite to the ranch huh?

Sarah VG said...

I love PW's blog! In fact I read it beacause you mentioned it a couple of years ago in your own blog. I've been hooked ever since. I know Ree's blunder made her armpits gush.... but be reassured you are a lovely lady.

Enid said...

So glad you got to meet her... One of my resolutions fir 2010 is meet Ree somewhere...!

Pamelotta said...

That was great! I love reading everyone's different experiences meeting PW. My meeting was somewhat uneventful but it still ranks up there as one of the most fun things I've done!

You looked great at the signing. If anything, Ree will never forget meeting you. I wouldn't be surprised if she mentions it in her post about Atlanta!

Jana said...

silly Ree! ya know she is a bit socially awkward, but so dang cute and addicting, I just came to say hello since she posted a link to you today! and for the record you sooo just like A mom...of someone...but not her...;)

Lisa S. in IL said...

I'm laughin' like crazy at this post. When I was 18, I was mistaken for my 12 year old sister's mother. I guess it was nice not to be carded, but geeze! I'm 50 somethin' now and we look pretty much the same age... Loved your post.

Southern Gal said...

I'm here from Ree's post. I started reading her about the same time you did. I so wanted to meet her, but couldn't work it out to get to Atlanta. You must be close to me in SC. Glad to 'meet' you.

Ruth Ann said...

That is SO funny! But then Caroline (in green, right? same as you)DOES look a great deal like you. The hair and the nose.....I came over from PW's blog. I found her blog the day her cookbook came out. She is a wonderful blogger. I just love checking out all these other blogs. All of you are so fun to read!

Rebekah said...

Oh how funny! I'd say you don't look a day over 32. ; ) What a long way to travel for PW. Glad you had a good time in spite of the ... um.. misunderstanding.

Anonymous said...

Oh, silly girl - you're tres youthful, and you're welcome to Pawhuska, Oklahoma anytime so we can experience your youthfulness (I laughed out loud at that line!). Loved meeting you - I distinctly remember what a doll you were!

Peace be with you,
Hyacinth (aka Cyndi)

Lorie said...

Oh, my word! That is hilarious! I would love to have gotten to go to a Ree signing but alas I live in the dinkiest town ever...further away from anywhere else than you can imagine so I just read about you lucky women who apparently look like you can be each other's mothers. Funny story...good job about being a good sport about it! :o) (Did any of that make sense?)

Sandy B said...

I am sooo green with envy that you got to meet PW. We had already booked a cruise when I finally got her calendar with the ATL date. Bugger. I so wanted to be there!

Neat blog. I'll visit again...

Dana D said...

How funny! What a great story! I'm in the Columbia area, too! Wish I could have made the trip, but couldn't get myself together to go!

Messy@ Bungalow'56 said...

Found your blog off of Ree's site. Thank you for the very funny story. I can't believe it happened twice. Too comical. You must just ooze wisdom. That must have been what they were picking up on.
Take care,
Messy from Bungalow'56 in Cold Northern Canada

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