Friday, April 15, 2016

Everything's Coming Up Aggie!

You may have wondered why I haven’t been posting as much lately.  I blame my son.  He just had to go off to Texas A&M University, an institution that some may claim is a cult.  Well, sure enough, I drank that maroon Kool-aid right off the bat, so I am just as indoctrinated in that culture as he is, and I’ve been volunteering with the Denton County A&M Mothers Club ever since.

The Aggies have a funny saying, “From the outside looking in, you can’t understand it.  From the inside looking out, you can’t explain it.”  Texas A&M and the Aggie Spirit have a way of grabbing you and making you feel like you’re home…like this is the group you should have always belonged to.  You wonder why it took you so long to find it.  And if you’re lucky enough to be born into it, you can’t imagine ever belonging anywhere else.  The Aggie network is a brotherhood and sisterhood of all Aggies.  They recognize each other from across the room and they are drawn to each other to share their love for that little school on the Brazos.  It’s not so little now, boasting some 50,000 students, but it still feels like home.

One really unique feature of Texas A&M is the Aggie Moms clubs.  The first club was started in 1921 when the mother of one of the students decided there was no female influence on the young men attending what was then an all-male, all-military school.  The mom’s club started by bringing some welcome home-cooking to the cadets and staff, and has since evolved into a far-reaching organization that supports the school, provides thousands of dollars in scholarships every year, and so much more.  I’ve met so many wonderful ladies through this organization, many with children who graduated long ago.  That’s why I signed up to help with the Aggie Mom Boutique four years ago, and I’m still at it!

This past weekend was  Texas A&M’s annual Parents’ Weekend, where the school invites the Aggie families to spend a few days on campus touring classrooms, attending banquets and awards ceremonies, and, of course, spending money that helps this fine educational establishment.  One of the things parents spend money on is the Aggie Moms Boutique, a craft show to end all craft shows featuring none other than…you guessed it…everything “Aggie” that you can imagine.  Picture two huge ballrooms full of maroon – it’s hard to imagine!

As the Co-Chairs of this year’s Boutique for Denton County, my partner, Alisa, and I were responsible for filling up 5 tables with assorted products of our choice, which you can see below.  Alisa and I made some of these items, and some were purchased or were donated by other Aggie Moms from Denton county.  In our booth we had etched glassware (a huge hit!), decorated picture frames, some altered windows, hand knitted items, sterling silver charms and other jewelry, Christmas ornaments, and, of course, fliers for our Fundraiser Cruise.

So why did I share all of this with you today?  Well, for inspiration, of course!  Maybe you’ll be inspired to check out Texas A&M University for yourself.  Or maybe you can start one of these unique clubs for your school to raise money for scholarships.  You might even be inspired by some of the crafty things we’ve made – you don’t have to make them maroon!

To get an up-close peek at some of our crafty projects, visit our photo album here.

P.S.  If you or your organization is interested in participating in or organizing a fundraiser cruise, please contact me at Crafty Neighbor Travel!  I would love to help you with a cruise, or you are welcome to join ours!

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