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Posts Tagged ‘Lisa Hampton’

Our Song…

Posted on: February 14th, 2013 by R.W. Hampton 3 Comments

So yesterday I asked the folks on Facebook if they had a special song with their “sweetheart” and of course to share what it was.

I love to read the answers and why people love a song. A lot of it has to do with timing…   If you fell in love in the 60’s your speical song is more likely to be from Sonny & Cher than from George Strait.  There is also the matter of what you danced to when dating or what made your heart sing when you were married.  Timing is everything.

Our song has a lot to do with timing too.  And, mind you, not all timing is good timing….

You see, Lisa and I had been friends for several years but when the magic happened things moved along pretty quick. We were both single parents doing the second-time around romance long-distance so if truth be told we really came to a point where we couldn’t afford to keep dating and paying all our money to phone bills and airline companies.

Yes, fall was in the air and Lisa was going to meet me and my boys in Fort Worth that October where I was playing Red Steagall’s Cowboy Gathering.  I mustered up all of my confidence as well as what little was left of my pocketbook and headed for the nearest mall with a jewelry store the week before the Gathering.

Lisa flew down to Fort Worth where my trusty side-kick, my brother Jeff, picked her up from the airport and brought her to the Stockyards.  She looked as pretty as ever, so with the ring in my pocket we spent the day with my family enjoying the event,  and me nervously waiting for the right moment to pull her aside and pop the question.

After dinner we all walked back to the big tent where Red and his Bunkhouse Boys were puttin on quite a dance.  “Ahhh, here is the place.” I thought.  We watched the dancers for a while then I turned to my friend JB Allen & his wife and asked if they would keep an eye on the boys for a moment while we danced.  Well, JB knew something was up so of course he wanted to stick around for the spectatin’.

Ammassing all my will power I ushered Lisa onto the dance floor and we swirled around the tent until I finally gathered enough courage to stop in a corner, and on one knee, I asked my very surprised sweetheart what she was doing for the rest of her life.  Without missing a beat she gave the answer that every nervous man hopes to hear, “Following some ol’ cowboy around!”. It was then I slipped the ring on her finger and said “Welcome to Texas!”

And…., then, as the song ended and we were making our way back to JB, Margaret, and the boys, Lisa paused and said the words I will never forget….  “Oh, I want to remember this moment forever Sweetie… What song were they just playing?”

It was at that moment that “our song” was created.  And it just so happened that Red and the Boys, which happened to magically include all the living Texas Playboys that night, were playing an old blues standard… “Misery” sung by none other than the great vocalist Leon Rausch.

Timing….. it is everything.  I can assure you, we laugh about it now, but we will never forget it!

Happy Valentines everyone. From our house to yours, we wish you a wonderful day wherever you are.

A Texas Springtime Ranch-Country Wedding

Posted on: April 19th, 2012 by R.W. Hampton No Comments

 

Can you believe spring is upon us? It’s been a unique year with unseasonably warm weather across the country, even here at 6,500′ elevation it’s starting to look like spring.  Of course the 8 to 10″ of snow we got last week sure didn’t hurt as it was a heavy wet snow, preceded by a nice rain shower and followed up by another a few days later.  Yes, even we have a little green grass growing, the trees have budded out and you can even find the occasional flower blooming.  All this springtime blooming has taken me down memory lane to this time last year. It was a Texas springtime, ranch-country wedding. There was magic in the air.

Springtime in Texas is like that anyway – what with the Bluebonnets, Indian Paintbrush, Prickly Pear blooms and all. Then add a ranch country wedding to that already potent mix and mister, you’ve got some strong medicine!

We had gathered in Palo Pinto County, TX for the wedding of a long tall cowboy (one Colter Hampton) to his Brazos River rose (Miss Cortni Clower). There, in a leafy glade surrounded by family and friends, in just a matter of a few moments, a miracle of love was witnessed and the world became a better place.

As I looked around me, a lump as big as Dallas grew in my throat. For not only had the boy found his True Love, but older brother Cooper was home safe from the war and in attendance, younger brother Denver was in from college, and littlest brothers Calvin and Ethan were behaving themselves. Big sister Gina, along with her husband Corby (my son-in-law), and their sons Barrett and Gus were able to make a rare getaway from their ranch to be here, too.

Long lost cousin Barbara, from way up in Maryland, made the long trip to reestablish her Texas Hampton roots.

My brother, Jeff, and his soon-to-be bride, LeAnn, were there holding hands like love-struck teens.

I knew that my long time best friend, Don, and his wife, Cindi (who’s like a sister to me), wanted to be there, but I wouldn’t have bet a plugged nickel that they would really make it, ’cause real life often gets in the way when your real life has to do with agriculture. But, by God, they made it, too!

So did Lisa’s brother, Ted, and his wife and both of their boys. All the way down from Central Oregon on their spring break.

And then there were all the Grand-folks! There were Hamptons, Moores, Lysters, Clowers and Rices, not to mention all the rest of Cortni’s side of the family – which was certainly abundant! The hall was full to over-flowing with cousins, aunts, uncles, neices, nephews, friends and even the occasional person that no one seemed to know.

All these smiling faces. All this history. All this love.

Even now, months later I find myself wondering if it may well be that not this side of heaven will we all be together again like this. No, surely not, but where else besides Texas in the springtime could it happen even once – like this?

After the “I dos” and all the pictures were taken, we all gathered in the reception hall to eat, drink and watch the newest Mr. and Mrs. Hampton cut their cake and drink Dr. Pepper toasts.

 

As the couple took to the dance floor, as the children played in the growing shadows, as the Texas sun made its way west, I stood alone trying to memorize every face and every scene of one of life’s few perfect days.

 

And amidst my memories of new love I find another. There I was, taking it all in, afraid to even blink, lest it all go away, my attention was finally stolen by a woman across the room. This lovely creature, although unaware I was watching, was working at the drink table filling cups with iced tea. I was taken not only by her obvious beauty, but by the look of total contentment she wore as she made an art out of this simple task.

Captivated and dumb-struck, I wondered how this could happen. What were the chances of a middle aged man falling in love at his son’s wedding? This kind of foolishness could get a man in big trouble. But no, not that day, because this angelic vision across the crowded room is the mother of my children, my sweetheart, my partner and my wife.

I smiled as I reached down and felt the gold band on my left hand.

Now why should old love born anew surprise me – or anyone, for that matter? After all, it was a Texas springtime ranch-country wedding, and there was magic in the air! 

Do you have a favorite springtime memory?  Is there really such a thing as “love in the air”?

 

Low in the Snow

Posted on: December 13th, 2011 by R.W. Hampton 6 Comments

 

Corgi

Well winter’s sure set in here at Clearview Ranch. While the boys and I were gone to Texas on our last road trip, my wife offered to babysit our good friend Shelly’s two Corgi dogs.  Neither of the pooches are house-broke so Lisa made them a home in our backyard. 

And then it snowed. Over six inches. 

Now that I’m home and my gigs for the year have wrapped up, it’s time to take my pencil and paper in hand and get back to writing songs. But, to be quite honest, here lately I’ve lacked inspiration. Between a flu bug I picked up at the Western Music Awards which lasted a month and a root canal on Thursday, I haven’t really had much to write about that would make good song material. That was until today when I spent the afternoon in the back yard chopping wood and after watching our two visitors try to make a home in snow that is 3 inches deeper than their legs are, I think I finally have some inspiration. 

So how about a new Christmas song that goes something like:

It’s Christmas time and my credit card won’t go/ I’m feeling low/ Like a Corgi in the snow

What do ya think? Is it a Nashville hit in the making? 

I think I’m feeling better already! 

Merry Christmas!  – RDub

Do you have a line that I can add to this? or have any better ideas I should be working on here? Send me your Christmas inspirations!

 

Name That Colt!

Posted on: June 7th, 2010 by R.W. Hampton 80 Comments

Well, friends, I’m here today to ask for some help: our newest Clearview Ranch baby needs a name!

That’s right. Lisa, the boys and I can’t seem to agree on any name that fits this little fella. So we’re gonna leave it up to you.

Take a look at the video here and give us your idea for a name for this new colt.

Leave your suggested name for the colt in the “Comments” section below before midnight on Saturday, June 12 MT.

We’ll gather all the names folks have submitted via this blog, on Facebook, and through Twitter. Lisa, Danner, Ethan and I will pick the three suggested names the family likes the best. These three names will become the official “finalists” of our name search.

Next week, all my fans can vote for whichever of the three names they like the most. The name receiving the greatest number of votes is the one we’ll name the colt.

It’s gonna be interesting to see what we all come up with in this little “name game,” so join in and let’s have us some fun!!

P.S. The colt’s parents’ names are Ms. Molly Freckles, and Sport N Bet, a Bet Your Blue Boons stud. We like CV A Solid Bet or CV Bet on Me for AQHA, but that barn name has escaped us!

** It is with great sadness that we unexpectedly lost our colt Chaco this past February 2012.  He had turned into a really neat colt with a fantastic attitude and willingness to be handled.   We want to thank everyone who helped to name him and we were honored to be able to share his antics on youtube.com and here at the ranch with so many who also fell in love with him.  

22 Years and 5 Days: A Life Well Lived

Posted on: June 4th, 2010 by R.W. Hampton 9 Comments

Last Monday, Memorial Day, Lisa inspired me to do something different, something special that would teach our boys and remind us adults about the real meaning of this day.  And so, about sundown, we found ourselves at a little mountain cemetery almost hidden in the shadows of the pines, sagebrush and yucca plants.

We were there to visit the final resting place of Lance Corporal Chad Hildebrandt U.S.M.C. As Lisa, the boys and I laid flowers on his grave, I was overwhelmed by the beauty of a life well lived. Lisa and I talked about how Chad’s sacrifice in Operation Iraqi Freedom has blessed and inspired so many and continues to do so even today. It would seem that laying down one’s life to help buy freedom for a stranger on foreign soil would be enough, but it doesn’t stop there.

Lance Corporal Chad Hildebrandt U.S.M.C.

My song, For the Freedom, was partially inspired by this man. I know my own son’s choosing to join the Marine Corps was influenced by Chad’s service. This life that lasted only 22 years and 5 days has birthed friendships and bonds that will last forever. A career in teaching rose up and grew from a mother‘s love and grief. Now countless children reap the benefits of this woman’s love and nurturing, not the least of whom is my 3-year-old son, Ethan. And on and on it goes.

Many of us could make it to the century mark and not make such a positive impact and leave so rich a legacy.
 
And so a life well lived, no matter how short, is still a life well lived. Especially when that life ends while performing one’s earthly calling, passion and duty. I know when this man met his maker, he was greeted by the words, “ Welcome home, warrior. Well done. Well done!”
 
Is there any greater achievement than this? I think not!