5 years

Bluegrass THREADS is thrilled to be celebrating 5 years!  Five years feels momentous—we’ve made it!

This blog has been a source of personal inspiration and growth during the first five years of my son’s life, the loss of my father, job transitions, big moves and many of the other changes (good and bad) over this half decade.

centerpieceimage by Desarae Anderson Photography

To celebrate and commemorate this milestone, I want to highlight these top 5s—the most read and shared stories of the past 5 years:

Continue reading 5 years

inspiring blue

Blue is a color that truly boosts my mood, especially following the epic snowfalls of the past few weeks.  Of course, living in Wildcat country is certainly reason enough to love all things blue (Big Blue Nation!).

These are a few of the blue hued images from that are inspiring my March:

centerpiece

Fifth anniversary shoot

image by Desarae Anderson Photography

paperclutchcap

Blue folded clutch

CoachCal

Polyvore set by dthoskins

083

First birthday celebration

image by Honey Heart Photography

boycakesbgtii

Baby announcement

image by dthoskins

shower_2

Baby boy shower

image by KGreeneOwens

acckitty

Kitty

image by dthoskins

boxes

Boxes

image by dthoskins

lily

Beachy scent

What color inspires you?

katherine Greene

 

big blue nation

As our beloved CATS prepare to play in the National Championship game of the NCAA Tournament on Monday, we share some of our favorite looks to show your wildcat spirit.  We love to see our city decked out in blue and white!

gobigblue!

dthoskins

CoachCal

 dthoskins

Read more our this bluegrass institution here and here.

Will you be watching?  How do you show your #BBN spirit?

BGTsig

 

 

 

bluegrass bonds {guest post by Drew Greene, Lexington, KY} part 2

If you haven’t caught up with Part 1 yet, check it out here.

image credit: sports.com

I have many fond memories of Rupp Arena and those memories are the crux of what I wanted to share with the Bluegrass Threads readers. This isn’t a piece pretending the games are larger than life—and I hate to break it to anyone who believes they are—they aren’t. They’re just 18 year olds dribbling a ball. Whoever wins and loses rarely matters. What truly matters are the memories we’re spoiled enough to enjoy because we exist in this unique, timeless culture. I couldn’t tell you the first time I went to a UK game. I vaguely remember Rex Chapman and his awkward 1980’s stylized short shorts. I remember walking into a cavernous Rupp Arena with the generic, 1970’s concrete wall designs, and the orange, yellow and red seats (what were they thinking?). I remember the smell of hot dogs, ketchup and mustard splattered all over the condiment stand across from the vendors. I remember falling in love with the pep band and screaming out “UK!” at the end of each song and then acting like a brat screaming out “UcK!” when the team was playing poorly. My mother was appalled and scolded me–good for her.

I identify March of 1992 as the turning point for my fandom. Kentucky vs. Duke. Everyone knows this game. I remember being terrified of my parents—especially my father who was drinking each bourbon and diet coke like it was his last. Sean Woods hit a running baby hook shot in the lane to give Kentucky a 103-102 lead. My father screamed and got on the ground, doing push ups, almost as an offering to his collegiate athlete God. It was tribal. It was hilarious. I felt like I was a part of something important and much bigger than me. I was hooked. Well, everyone knows how that ended. Christian Laettner hit an incredible shot and broke all of our hearts. I went to my room and cried. Later my mom came in and hugged me. It felt like it did when you’re sick as a kid and mom’s love makes you feel…even more sick.

I like to remind my dad about doing push ups in front of the television, or throwing his glass across the room after that shot and, prior to the shot, exclaiming, “I really want them to win this game” while on his knees. Now that I’m almost 30 and I’ve seen plenty of good times and bad, I can understand why that game meant so much to him then. It was Kentucky re-emerging from the ashes of the late 80’s where probation and scandal had almost killed the program. Calipari rejuvenating the program almost 20 years after that shot is symmetrical. Kentucky being relevant is essential to Lexington and to the Commonwealth of Kentucky. So many families and friends come together for these silly games. “Where you watching the game?” “Want to grab a few beers and watch? “We’re heading downtown for some dinner and the game.” “Elite 8 party at my house! Go Cats, baby!”

I attended another game today. I have no idea how many this makes for me but as I was walking around downtown Lexington, which has grown considerably since 2009, I realized the downtown culture is largely fueled by Kentucky basketball. When the weather is gross, Kentucky basketball keeps the restaurants full and the atmosphere exciting. There’s also the familiar yuletide feeling of Thanksgiving and Christmas and it’s so cold outside because that’s basketball weather! The fountains lit up at Triangle Park, complete with an ice skating rink and a Christmas tree as you walk across our goofy little bubble passage ways that rise above downtown.

After the game ends and I step outside onto Vine Street, gazing towards Lexington’s modest skyline, “My Old Kentucky Home” rings in my head. It is played at the conclusion of each game while the cheerleaders lock arms and sway back and forth. I think about how many family members, friends, lovers and partners are linked together from Paducah, Cadiz, Owensboro, Cave City, Bowling Green, Louisville, Lexington, Danville, Somerset, Powell, Newport, Covington, Morehead, Maysville, Middlesboro, Hazard, Harlan and Pikeville. Kentucky is a diverse border state with cultural influences coming from all directions, but maybe basketball is our common bond. It’s both humbling and comforting to feel connected to the world at large. And even in the smallest of scopes, here in Lexington, I know I’m closer to my loved ones because of our bond–especially to my Dad, whom I credit for grooming me as a fan. Hopefully that connection lasts long after we’ve left this life.

 

-Drew

 

Drew Greene is a 29 year old Lexington native with an interest in many artistic endeavors, such as art and video editing. He’s also a self-taught musician and works full time at Galls Inc in north downtown Lexington. In his spare time, he enjoys exploring Kentucky with his girlfriend, Andrea.
Thanks, Drew!  If you or someone you know has something to share about the bluegrass region, send us an email at katherine@bluegrassthreadsky.com or diana@bluegrassthreadsky.com.

bluegrass bonds {guest post by Drew Greene, Lexington, KY} part 1

image credit: ukathletics

If you’ve ever told someone you’re from Kentucky, they’ll likely give you a look of shock because you can speak coherently. Others might engage you in a less condescending manner which, invariably, turns the topic of conversation towards what most outsiders know about the Commonwealth–bourbon, the Kentucky Derby and basketball. Those of us who’ve spent the majority of our lives in the bluegrass state know there’s so much more to explore and enjoy than that, and it can become a bit nauseating—almost like hearing that Elvis is the king or that the Beatles were the greatest rock and roll band of all time (what a novelty!) Well, sometimes clichés ring true. Maybe there’s a good reason our beautiful home – specifically the University of Kentucky – is known for basketball.

There are a handful of schools that are relevant in the college basketball landscape every year—Duke, North Carolina, maybe Kansas or Indiana. 70 miles northwest of Lexington is the University of Louisville, which is also a great basketball tradition, but they lack the hype that UK has. In fairness to the Cardinals, no other program grabs headlines and directs eyes quite like UK. Whether it’s good or bad press, whether we’re a national title contender or an NIT wonder, it really doesn’t matter. Kentucky points the needle, or, as John Calipari has emphatically stated to Kentucky’s insatiable fans, “we are the needle.” Perhaps there’s good reason for him to boast. What other program has had 5 different coaches win national titles since the 1930’s—proving that the greatness of the program extends far beyond one coach who strings together a few good years? Kentucky is a consistent winner; and people love that but plenty of others hate it, too.

I could write about how this all started but if you’re from here, it’s likely you’ve heard those stories. It’s amazing to me to listen to undergraduates at UK who can barely wake up for their noon classes at Alumni Hall, who didn’t breathe air until 1992, and are victims of a largely self-glamorizing culture talk about Adolph Rupp and Joe B. Hall as if they witnessed those teams of the past. And that’s exactly what makes Kentucky awesome. No disrespect to Duke fans but they believe basketball was invented in the late 80s’ when they emerged as a contender. Kentucky fans breathe this stuff. Past players become campus legends and former coaches are revered or (in Rick Pitino’s case) hated. Though, I’ll never fault Rick for returning to our amazing home.

“I was born a New Yorker but I want to die a Kentuckian” said Rick Pitino this year. Why not? If you’ve spent the majority of your life on the hardwood, why wouldn’t you fall in love with a state that breeds people who believe camping out for the first practice of the season is normal? Yes, we are overzealous, egotistical and completely ridiculous when it comes to civic pride, but those things make us great, too. It’s also common to criticize Kentucky fans as being a one-sport fanatics but I can’t stress how far this is from the truth. We love our football too but it’s an abusive relationship where we play the part of the battered housewife and we have to assure ourselves “they really do love me!” Maybe they’ll stop beating us senseless next year. Joking aside, I have just as many fond memories of Commonwealth Stadium as I do Rupp Arena…

 

To hear more about Drew’s basketball memories, tune in for part 2, tomorrow.

 

 

 

 

 

Drew Greene is a 29 year old Lexington native with an interest in many artistic endeavors, such as art and video editing. He’s also a self-taught musician and works full time at Galls Inc in north downtown Lexington. In his spare time, he enjoys exploring Kentucky with his girlfriend, Andrea.

 

Thanks, Drew, for sharing your story with us.  If you or someone you know has something to say about what makes the bluegrass a special place, send us an email at katherine@bluegrassthreadsky.com or diana@bluegrassthreadsky.com.