Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Spirit of Aggieland

I have to start out by saying that I'm so excited to be blogging about this!

Last night was my first Aggie football game to attend since I graduated seven years ago. I have such a renewed love for my school and for my diploma which is sitting in my closet in a maroon frame that doesn't match the rest of my house. Maybe I'll finally hang it up.

I fell in love with Aggieland when I went to my first A&M football game in sixth grade. My Uncle Mike, who's an Aggie, took my dad and me to the t.u. game on Thanksgiving Day and from then on I bled maroon.

I've been waiting with great anticipation for Jackson to be at the right age to go to his first game. Curtis and I had been thinking about giving it a try and we ended up finding 4 great tickets online for yesterday's game. We invited Sara, our awesome babysitter, to come with us because we had an extra ticket and thought we could use an extra set of arms. I considered leaving Annabeth with Sara at our house, but she's been refusing the bottle since early August and I was afraid to leave her that long. It seemed like a better plan to go all together.

So the Jones family got decked out in some new Aggie gear. We had a hard time finding anything for Annabeth with such short notice. I planned to look at one more place yesterday morning, but then I found out Annabeth - even though she's an infant in arms - was required to have a ticket. ARE YOU KIDDING ME, KYLE FIELD? There went her outfit. I dressed her in brown because it blends in nicely with maroon. Go me.

We headed out early so we could see Step Off, which is when the Corps of Cadets and the Fightin' Texas Aggie Band march from the Quad to Kyle Field. I'd only seen this twice - the first time was back in sixth grade and the second time was on the first game of my freshman year. It was still dern hot at 4:30, but Jackson enjoyed it so much. It was totally worth it. Plus, we met up with my friend Allie and her twins and that was so fun! Allie and I have been friends since Kindergarten and we have lots of memories at A&M together. It was a little surreal being there with our kids.

After that we had to figure out Annabeth's ticket situation. I was nearly sick over the prospect of forking over money for her when we didn't even expect to make it past half time AND SHE WASN'T GOING TO TAKE UP A SEAT. Curt kept talking to the scalpers, but I was determined to find someone just giving one away. Sure enough, when we walked up to the ticket booth I saw a man offering a single ticket to another lady. I eavesdropped a little and could tell she needed more than one ticket, so I boldly approached and let the man know we were looking for a single ticket for our precious, darling baby. LOOK HOW CUTE SHE IS IN THIS BABY BJORN! God bless that wonderful man because he gave us the ticket. It was a good one too, not that it mattered. I'm kind of embarrassed that I was so bold, but PRAISE GOD! Thank you, kind, kind sir for having mercy on us.

Then it was time for some grub, so we sat on a curb and ate some hamburgers from the Fuddrucker's tent. Annabeth was asleep in the Baby Bjorn while I ate. At this point, we were able to meet up with my BFF from high school, Jen, and her family. This was so fitting because Jen's dad was a huge influence on my love for A&M as a teenager. He was always taking us to games, bless his heart. There's no telling how many brain cells he lost as he was subjected to our discussions of whether we just made eye contact with a yell leader or if Corey Pullig noticed us.

We made it to our seats on the SECOND ROW at the 20 yard line. Awesome! They were singing "The Spirit of Aggieland" as we got seated, which was perfect timing. A few days ago I showed Jackson some Aggie propaganda films on You Tube to get him ready, so he was familiar with the song.

From this point on it was sort of a beating. Annabeth didn't even make it halfway through the first quarter before she was crying uncontrollably. She was so thirsty that she took water from a bottle without hestitation. (Enter mommy guilt.) I left the stands on a mission to find a good place to feed her. I ended up walking through some doors I probably shouldn't have and found an air conditioned hallway and a nice, quiet women's locker room where I could feed her. Maybe we shouldn't have gone in there, but MY 7-MONTH-OLD HAD A TICKET.

After that, Annabeth let me watch about 10 more minutes of the game before she was crying again. Sara took her this time and kept her until half time was over. Jackson was now spazzing out too. He was bored with the game (to be fair, he couldn't really see it) and couldn't be still. They were obviously too young for all of it, but I'm glad we tried. At one point I made him sit in between Curtis and me so that he'd chill out, and he looked at me and said, "You're not my favorite." Well, that was a first! I said, "That's okay, I don't need to be your favorite."

Jackson LOVED half time. He smiled and clapped and just got a big kick out of the whole thing. The band is so neat. As soon as it was over, we jetted. We made a quick stop at Sonic and then got on the road.

Next time Curtis and I will probably just go by ourselves, but the whole experience was great. I'm so glad Sara came with us because just having an extra person eliminated a lot of stress.

Here we are with Allie, Lauren and Blake.



Some members of the Corps getting ready for Step Off.



The canon being driven out.



Lots of marching.



Jackson watching the band approach. About 10 seconds after this we almost got trampled.



Annabeth was a big hit in the Baby Bjorn. She didn't even need a maroon and white outfit.



Mr. Wilson and his Aggie girls, all grown up. Jen, we'll pretend you didn't go to TCU instead.





That's the student section. You have to stand the whole time on that side, but I have to admit it's more fun over there.



This was right before the players came in. It was so exciting.



Some of the players. We were so stinking close!



Sara and Jackson.



Curtis and Annabeth.



Me and my boy.



Aggie Yell Leaders - bromance at its best.





The pilots who did the flyover sat right in front of us. Everyone clapped when they took their seats. I forgot to mention how much Jackson loved the flyover.



This is the Aggie mascot, Reveille. She is the highest ranking member of the Corps of Cadets.





I think I've seen that boy somewhere!





I don't think I need to explain this one.





This guy reminded me of Alice and Wonderland.



Freaky picture.



This guy's shoe fell off.



My favorite part!















Only in a college town.

83 comments:

Ashley said...

My parents and I were at the game and when Jackson was on the big screen mom said "That is Jackson". Wish we could have seen you all! It is surreal to return as a former student, I appreciate A&M more each time I return to visit. Have a great week, Annabeth looked adorable too!

Blessings,
Ashley

Alana said...

I can't beleive Jackson got on the Jumbotron! That's great! I can't wait to take Mac!

Lauren said...

What a fun time! Stuff like this always made me secretly jealous of Aggies. I almost applied there as a transfer student for the spirit alone.

Also, SCANTRONS?!? So funny! I just cannot fathom any college student saying, "I gotta get me to Sonic for some free scantrons."

The B's said...

Can I say I'm jealous and happy for you at the same time?? :) I went to my first A&M game when I was in sixth grade too. I was determined to go there for college...we moved from TX to FL when I was going into 8th grade...instead of A&M the Lord led me to Samford in Birmingham. I am so grateful and I love that school but there is still a part of me that wants to badly to go to A&M. ONE DAY...ONE DAY I will...I may be old and gray but I will go and get some kind of degree there! :) I think it is one of the greatest schools and has such unique and awesome traditions. No one can truly understand all that goes into an A&M game unless they actually experience it! Lucky you for getting to go back. I hope I get to take my family one day! :)

Moose Mama said...

What fun!! And Jackson on the Giant Screen! Cool beans.

Melan in Wyoming

Mary said...

Whoop!!

Marla Taviano said...

You are so, so, so brave!!

bethany said...

Looks like so much fun! On a much smaller note...I almost took my nephew Cole to his first high school football game on Friday night...he got a cold so we did not make it but maybe next week!
I don't know though...Jackson is only 1 month older than Cole so if Jackson's reaction to a ball game is any hint at Cole's I might want to wait a little longer :)

Big Mama said...

This whole post made me so happy and very nostalgic. Love, love, love that Jackson made the jumbotron.

Beau, Melissa, and Brynne said...

Miss you 'ol roomie!

Amber Cessac said...

I so wish I would have gone to a school with pride like that. I'm so into that kind of stuff! I tell myself that A&M people are annoying with all of their traditions and maroon, but really, it's just cause I'm jealous. So I say those things to make myself feel better!!

So cool Jackson was on the big screen!!

The Barfuss Family said...

LOVE me some Aggie football! Glad y'all had such a great time.

Nicole said...

How fun! Love Jackson on the big screen! Smiling and all AND you caught it on the camera! Perfect! I have to admit I am a little jealous! Had I not followed a boy (um...totally not saved yet) I would have loved to go there. LOVE the traditions!

I got to the experience the Aggie band once in my life and wow...it was AHHMAZING! I danced at Kilgore College and we performed at the Cotton Bowl. It was Notre Dame and Texas A&M. We got to see them from the sidelines up close and it was incredible!

*Kc* said...

How fun! I love college football!!

So awesome your son got on the Jumbotron and yay for you snapping a pic!!

Spicy Magnolia said...

Gig 'em! I'm not an Aggie, but my brother is (class of '03) and we bleed maroon for him...and well, we just love A&M! We CAN'T WAIT to take Brennan to his first Aggie game; in fact, my parents have called dibs.

While that might be a way's away, we are still celebrating Aggieland LOTS. If you want to see our little Aggie and our own celebration: http://www.spicymagnolia.com/spicy_magnolia/2009/09/go-get-em-and-gig-em.html. It makes me smile every time. :)

You are a very cute Aggie family! :)

AKat said...

Whoop! Great post.

Becky said...

Great Aggie pics! Makes me remember the days... So fun that Jackson got to experience aggieland, and get on the jumbo-tron!

Kelly said...

Loved everything about this post.
You just confirmed to me why I will be waiting a good 5 years before trying to take Harper no matter how cute she looks in Razorback gear! ha!
My brother is an Aggie - I don't know if I've told you that. I nearly disowned him when he decided to go to A&M. ha!

Alissa said...

I KNEW that I recognized that adorable boy on the Jumbotron last night! I had to leave a couple of times with my 6 yr old, it was so dang HOT! I'm glad you all were able to go to the game and also glad that they won! (although you didn't know it at the time you left!)

Sister Lynn said...

I LOVE IT!!!! Thanks for posting the pics. I miss Aggieland. And Aggieland on gameday is the best!
Glad you are teaching Jackson early!

blessings,
sister Lynn

Leyla said...

Hey...we were there and when Jackson's picture flashed on the screen I hit Bryan next to me and said "That's Jackson!", he turns to me and says..."Who's Jackson?" I was so excited to see him on there and knew it was him as soon as I saw it. So glad yall had a great time...we love it and have not missed a home game in 7 years. Audrey's first two games have gone great...but I'm just waiting for her to throw a fit.

R said...

i married an aggie, and i STILL haven't been to a game yet! cannot wait to finally get to one!

valerie said...

What a fun day for y'all!
How cool that Jackson was on the big screen.
I remember a couple of years ago I got to go to see OU and A&M play. Their band really is amazing and so neat to watch.
My hubby and I went to the OU/Tulsa game yesterday. It was so much fun. I also posted a ton of pictures from our day on my blog. I love football.
Thanks for sharing!

Mandi said...

Just like Jackson I enjoy a flyover before a game, too. How neat that you were able to snap a picture of him on the big screen!

Kiki said...

Those pics make me want to go!

Ronda said...

Ooh! So much fun! I am looking forward to bringing our kiddos to their first Aggie game one day as well It's great that you documented the day so well. Maybe this will be the first of many Aggie games to come!

lavonda said...

Way to be Mommy-On-the-Spot getting a pic of your boy on the big screen! Woo Hoo!! You've got to just have your camera out and ready to go when those moments come along...

And bonus that your team was winning while Jackson's picture was up! Makes for an even BETTER photo!! :)

My son was 10 before I took him to his first college football game. TEN. Horrible, I know! But we sat in the coach's box so hopefully that made up for my second rate parenting not taking him before he was in the double digits. :)

Loved the pictures! Y'all are just adorable.
(Every picture of my daughter at that age she had a giant bow headband on just like Annabeth. LOVE IT.)

Nicole said...

The picture of the yell leader on your post is Reagan Thompson, I was just talking to his parents today at church about the game. Reagan is one of a set of quadruplets from my hometown (all 4 attend A&M). Actually, my husband taught him in Sunday School. Too cool!

Kari said...

I'm a Big 12 girl . . . a Nebraska Cornhusker actually and I know all too well how important it is to share the greatness of college football with the kids. My own girls (10 and 5) got to experience their first taste of Nebraska football this past April at the spring scrimmage. (We're diehards-500 miles away and we pulled our 10 year-old out of school to go 8 hours west to see this for herself!) Anyway, it was a blast, so I can totally appreciate your post today. No luck getting our girls on the jumbotron, but my hubby managed to get on the screen a few years ago at a regular game. You're faster than me-I never got a photo of it. Rats. Anyway, if you want to read another account of introducing one's offspring to the marvels of college football, you can read about it here: http://acoupleofthings.blogspot.com/2009/04/word-tradition-usually-brings-to-mind.html

Have a great football season!
Kari

Jake said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
carridawn said...

Awesome day for y'all!! WHOOP!!! Thanks for bringing back some incredible memories :)

Bobbie said...

Whoop! We were there too! We were up on the third deck with all the crickets and moths!! How fun for Jackson to be on the big screen AND sit behind the Marine pilots. That was a particularly moving flyover with the missing man formation! After 37 years being married to an Air Force pilot that always gets me right in the heart!!

We're lovin' livin' in Aggieland--I never get tired of Howdy and maroon everywhere. Thanks for sharing your day.

Gig'em and God Bless!

Ruth said...

Hi Amanda,

I'm finally delurking to thank you for your awesome pictures of my beloved Aggieland. My husband and I are currently in China (with our two future Aggies) and we are missing home and College Station so very much! We haven't taken our kids to a game yet, but we did take them to C.S. when we were in the States this summer. It was their first trip to A&M, and we wanted to show my son "his" name on the wall at the MSC -- he is named for my husband's great uncle.

Anyway, so glad that you had a great trip and you all look fabulous in your maroon gear!

Gig em and have a wonderful week!

Blessings,
Ruth

Kim said...

The post was fantastic - but seriously you take the best pics. May I ask what kind of camera you use? We need a new one and hopefully Christmas sales will inspire me. Thanks.

Kim . . . who is
Grafted by Grace

Annie said...

How fun! All of the pics are great...especially the one where you are with your friend and her kids and holding Annabeth and she's looking at you... so sweet...

Rhonda said...

What a great time! Tons of memories come back:) I hope to take our boys some day. We have the ultimate struggle in our family. My in-laws are all tu fans (minus one who holds out for the Red Raiders) so they are constantly trying to pull my men children to the burnt side. NO I say NO! Looks like such fun:) Glad ya'll had a good time!

Wendi said...

I am class of '95 and my hubby is class of '94. We are lucky enough to live in Aggieland and have season tickets. My kids love going. If you take the kids again, here is what we do. We skip march in and hit the Spirit Walk. This is new since you have been. It is a bit earlier but they have a kids' yell practice and they can meet and have pics with the yell leaders. The band forms, plays, marches and leads the players in. Yep, you get to high five the Aggie football players as they walk into Kyle. My little one loves it. Then we get back to our tailgate in time to eat and hang out for a while before we make the hike up to the 3rd deck for flyover.

Oh yeah, come in early and hit the tent sales. You could get the kids each an Aggie shirt for about $7. They have some Annabeth's size too.

I hope you get to make another game. You are always welcome to our tailgate.

Heather said...

what a fun time! you all look so cute and what a handsome little boy on the jumbotron!

allyaggie said...

Love the post! Brings back memories, and makes me want to take my girls to their first Aggie football game. They're 8 and 6, so maybe it would be a little easier. Although, to their coaching daddy's chagrin they have little interest in sports!
Thanks for the smiles!
Allyson
Class of 96

Joanna said...

Amanda!
I loved that post. It brought back SO many memories! My brother was in the *amazing* band and my husband was in squadron 17!!! When i saw the pics of the band on the field in my head i heard " World famous Fightin Texas Aggie Band" :)
It looks like ya'll had such a fun weekend!!

Lysa TerKeurst said...

Okay... now you've inspired me to take my kiddos back to Furman U...my ol' college stomping grounds.

Loved all the photos!!!

Holly said...

Much fun!! My A&M diploma from 1993 is still in it's tube and tucked away in the closet--shameful, I know!
My Chris always gets teary-eyed at this phrase, ""Now forming at the north end of Kyle Field, the nationally famous Fightin' Texas Aggie Band..." We always seemed to end up sitting behind the band in college. Talk about crazy fun!

TAMMY said...

Thanks for sharing these pictures.
They are great.

Alison said...

This post cracked me up. From the injustice of requiring a baby to get a ticket to the "free scantron" sign--lol! It also made me miss Aggieland--I haven't been a game since '02 either (probably longer than that, but shhhhhh). Your babies look precious, too! Annabeth didn't need to wear anything special, although I really wish A&M had tiny cheerleading outfits for girls. I know that we don't have cheerleaders and all, but would that not be the cutest? Okay, this post is becoming a book, so I'll stop now.

Lauren Kelly said...

Soooo fun, LOVED all the pics!! :)

Janet Scarth said...

Loved the post Amanda. My claim-to-fame is that your mom & I were Aggie-Moms at the same time. Loved all the pics and the stories too!!! I still love going to Aggieland -- now I have a nephew there. Hoping to go to a game this fall sometime. My Aggie is class of 1999! And.... Corey Pullig is my daddy's cousin's grandson!!! :-)

Janet in Amarillo

Nichole said...

As a Mom of a three month old I just wanted to say thank you for sharing this story! By all accounts from your pictures everything went great...smiling baby and little boy and no evidence of "mommy guilt." It's nice to read the back story and know that sometimes the pictures aren't all they seem and I'm not the only mom who has a screaming baby sometimes!

Erica said...

How fun! That is SO neat that Jackson was on the big screen...His first Aggie game and he made it on the big screen!
I really can't believe Annabeth needed a ticket, but I am so glad you were blessed with a free one. It will probably be a while before we take the girls, but Brian and I are anxious to go for sure. It has been almost 10 years for us~

Toknowhim said...

So cool about Jackson on the big screen :) And you got a picture of it too...

Great pictures...

Allison Talamantez said...

You and Jennifer both look GREAT!!! (but, in some ways I still think of us all as Freshman at CFHS) How exciting that Jackson was on the Jumbotron....and of course, I wouldn't be Sooner Bred if I did not add a little BOOMER SOONER!!!

Heather said...

I love this post and all the pics!!! Too cool that Jackson got on the big screen! You are "every woman" for feeding Annabeth in that locker room! :)
Have a great week!

Sharon said...

This post made me so excited to go to the football game we have tickets for in October. My husband and I (both proud Aggies) are taking our twin girls for the first time (Age 4.5). I hope they make it through the game since I am getting some stinkin' cute outfits made for them:). I loved all the pictures..it brought back so many good memories.

kace said...

so fun!! what a great moment for a lil boy.. im sure he won't be able to forget that soon! random question?? where do you get annabeth's bows?? they are the PERFECT size for lil baby heads! Thanks!

Smith Family said...

WHOOP!!!!

Patty said...

A lot of people don't understand my love for the University of Tennessee Vols football traditions. (you know the real U.T. lol) just kidding to any Longhorn fans. ;)

I just loved reading about the Aggies and your pictures were great! You captured all the fun!!

I can't believe Jackson made it on the jumbotron!

Love,
Patty

Keri said...

My husband took our 8 year old to that game....a little father/son bonding time. They were telling me about some sort of cricket plague that took over the top 12 rows or so of the top deck.....crazy!!!

So glad you went and had a great time! As a Baylor girl, I can say that there is nothing better than a football game at A&M!

Amanda said...

S., I hear you and I'm sorry that people can be so tactless. Church is not the time or place and I have never liked the misquoted verses. I feel okay with what I said in this blog post, but I understand your frustration over the bigger issue.

courtney said...

Can I tell you how much I love the free scantrons??

Deirdre said...

You will always be glad you have photos of them this young at the game.

Fran said...

My favorite is the jumbotron picture!!!!

And bless your soul for posting all those pix. We are grateful because they are too fun!!

Hugs,
Fran

katiegfromtennessee said...

Glad you got to go, Little Momma, and Sara was a blessing! I love Annabeth's hairbows!:) Just had to tell you:)

katiegfromtennessee

Amy T said...

That brought back some memories. I need to plan a trip to take my son. He's 10 and wants to go to A&M. He would love to go to a game. Hmmmm......

Emily said...

I love that you took a picture of Jackson on the Jumbotron!! Who knows what we're gonna have when he's in college. :) I really think my eyes did go crossed on the freaky picture. and I love that you got a picture of the Tuba guys mid-turn. I love all your pictures. Oh yeah, and I love that Annabeth had a bow to match her bjorn!

carolnc said...

So much fun! We have taken our kids to "The Swamp" in Gainesville, but not during football season. They want to go to a game, but it's hard to get tickets when you live 700 miles away.

Please help me; I guess I am ancient, why would Sonic have free scantrons???

Swan Family said...

WHOOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love that place!

Amy said...

You are a brave soul! Love the picture of your little Jackson on the jumbotron - how great that you could capture that!

Sarah said...

Hey, Amanda! Those were amazing pics from Aggieland! Makes me want to put my kiddos in maroon right now! I got so excited to see the first picture because my old dorm room window was in the background. Good ol' Spence Hall on the Quad. Oh, the memories. I'm glad you got to take your little ones to the game and that they got to experience it all. So much fun!

Great to talk to you last night at Bible study!

Sarah

Sheryl said...

What great pictures! Boy, you were brave--two kids at that game. So glad you had a good time.

I love reading about your family. Thanks for including all of us in your life.

Sheryl

Jennifer said...

Hi! I just wanted to say that I love your blog! I'll be back! :)

Elizabeth said...

I am a proud mom of the, how does it go,...class of 2013!!

If you want to see what an Aggie freshman is like this will give you a pretty good idea!

http://philonethree.blogspot.com/

And I think she gave a shout-out to Big Mama in her first post during Gig 'Em Week.

Your family is always so darling and I love the fact that you let the real family bleed through your writing. Jackson's comment made me chuckle, and his jumbo-tron face made me smile! Your baby girl is just as precious as always. You can Curtis have done well.

S. said...

Amanda,

Thank you for your response. After following the LPM blog for so long, I kinda feel like I know your heart. You don't seem like someone who would inflict hurt knowingly.

Unfortunately, all of the folks I know who spout the "T.U." stuff do it with a smug grin.

I am sorry if you caught the brunt of my years of frustration.

AbbyLane said...

wow i didn't realize ALL THAT went into it...pretty awesome! too bad carolina is pretty HORRIBLE at football most seasons...but that's ok cause i'm pretty sure most BASKETBALL fans recognize our colors ;)

i'm only 2 years out of school, but i'm already excited about going back to visit...i can only imagine being able to take your kids too! how fun!

Jen said...

There is just something magical about it, isn't there?

How fun for Mr. Man to be up on the big screen! I am sure it was met with a Kyle Field collective "awwww!!"

And I love Annabeth's brown bow. Just darling!

Lindsee Lou said...

Seriously, looks like so much fun! I was not an Aggie, but ALL, and I mean ALL of my friends were. So I lived there just as much as I lived in Huntsville during the college years. And now my brother goes there! Hope y'all get to go back sooner than later!

Tae Tae said...

WHOOOOP! I love the post! I am the proudest member of the fightin Texas Aggie class of '05. Also, Annabeth looked adorable, so thanks & Gig 'Em to the Ticket man.

Bonny said...

Brings back good memories!

Harris Family said...

I love all the Aggie traditions even though I am a Razorback....oh and may the best man win this weekend!!!! So fun!

Sugar Mommy said...

My little man was there, too! It was his first time, but the Big Man didn't get to take him. :( I have pictures I need to post. I'm quite behind in the blogging area, but hopefully will catch up soon!

Looks like you had fun. Wish I had known you needed an outfit. I just found our little "Baby Aggie" onesie that all four of mine have worn, and was wondering who I could give it to. (And I was also wondering if I could really give it up, but that's another issue altogether.)

Kelli said...

It looks like you had such a fun time! I would have made a great Aggie, but I decided to go to the "other school"! :)

Tiffany said...

Love this post! I found your blog on Kelly's Korner. I'm an Aggie, class of '03. I haven't been back for a game since I left, so your pictures were a fun reminder! Have a great weekend.

Taylor said...

I HAD to click on your blog from Kelly's link...Anything that said "Gig'em Aggies!" My husband and I are huge Aggies (live in College Station) and have BIG Aggie families; however, what made me smile the most on your post was the pictures of my little brother...He is the commander of the Aggie Band!

Thanks for sharing! Hope you come back soon!

:) Taylor '99, '03, '10

The Williamson's said...

Great post. Your lil one is precious. Gig 'Em!

Kristina and TJ said...

I found your blog on Kelly's Korner. I was looking at your pictures and I saw a picture of Jennifer and Jaylee. I work at the gym they go to...small world. Very cute pictures at the game. I can't wait to go back to College Station for another game. Whoop! Gig'em Aggies!