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Things I’ve Learned Since Moving to Texas

This past Saturday, I was second shooting with my friend Natalie. During the reception, the mother of the bride walked up to me and said, “I know you.” I looked at her (probably rather perplexed) confused.

“You do?” I asked.

“Yes, we used to live in Fort Worth, and I definitely know you,” she said.

“Well, I’ve only lived in Texas for two and a half years, so I’m not sure,” I said.

“Oh, wait. Your voice doesn’t match the person I’m thinking of,” she replied.

Definitely a weird conversation. This was the second time in the last few weeks that a native Texas has “recognized” me, aka confused me with someone else.

It’s crazy to think that’s I’ve been in Texas for two and a half years already. Time went by so fast. We’re quickly approaching our three year wedding anniversary, and many days, I still feel like it’s only been a few months. Having moved from California, there have been quite a few things that I’ve learned about and continue to discover about living in Texas…

Football - Football is SERIOUS in Texas. I think for the South in general, but EXTRA serious in Texas. Friday Night Lights is a great show set in Texas (I still need to watch the rest of the seasons on Netflix), and is just a glimpse into Texas high school football. Sundays are reserved for God, Family, and Football.

Fierce School Allegiance – Many of the people that we have met and now call friends probably went to a Texas school, either Texas A&M, UT Austin, Baylor, or Texas Tech. I’ve learned that each school has it’s own special saying, hand signal, or school cheer, such as “Whoop!”, “Sic’em”, “Gig’em” and other hand gestures…And don’t mess with them. Having attended a university without a football team, this type of fierce school spirit was totally foreign to me. I’m learning…slowly.

Bluebonnets – So Texans seem to go wacky over their state flower, the Bluebonnet. I remember the first time someone mentioned bluebonnets. I had NO idea what they were talking about. I quickly learned that it’s traditional to have your photos taken in the bluebonnets. And since it’s a state flower, they cannot be cut, and grow in random places, such as the side of the highway. People will stop to take their photos in them. I started to imagine if Californians went nuts over the California Poppy and would stop on the side of the road to take photos in them.

Mums – This is a recent thing I learned about. I think I still have some learning to do. But these are like corsages that girls make and wear in junior high and high school during homecoming? Right? Someone please fill me in. A friend was telling me that girls make them bigger and outdo each other. I saw a few pictures on Facebook, and it’s definitely something new to me.

Mudding - A new activity I was just told about today. Where for recreation, people take their trucks and 4-Wheelers out to the mud to get it muddy. And stuff. For fun.

It’s clear to me that I’m a Californian living in Texas.

I have a lot to learn before I can ever call myself a Texan, that’s for sure.

And if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s this:

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Mary Cyrus - Mostly right! Mums are actually traditionally made by the girl’s date for the homecoming dance (or more often, his mom, or someone he hired to make it). Girls make their date “garters”, which are basically smaller mums worn on the arm (whereas mums are pinned to the shirt, or in more recent years, I’ve seen them hung on necklaces because they’ve gotten riDICULOUSly heavy). Naturally, a google search I just did for some example photos turned up a blog post about students at my own old high school: http://thestylesisters.blogspot.com/2008/10/texas-homecoming-mums.html

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