{Fist Pump Friday!}

Friday, September 30, 2011


To kick off this week's photos let's meet our FPF challenge winners from Chattanooga, TN. Meg and her friend Patty have been going to Lupi's for cheese wheels ever since they were in high school. Fist pumps for Chacos, baby bumps, and loyal pizza employees who rock beards, bandanny's and aprons!


Next, meet Auburn Freshman Mary Katherine, Janie (freshman at Alabama), Marti, Chelsey, Sloane, and Lacey who threw #13 fist pumps at the Taylor Swift concert in Nashville. Proud of you girls for already having a college road trip under your belts!

Our next photo is of  sweet Claire (sophomore at Truman State) who threw fist pumps and leg kicks while camping with her friends. Bonus points for having an appreciation for s'mores, sunrises, and good music!


Sara, Michelle, Tracy, and Jamie threw fist pumps and leg kicks after competing in the Tulsa Warrior Dash last weekend. Way to go Warriors! You know how Mr. Loerke and I feel about getting muddy ... 


Our next photo is of the 3CE girls at Taylor University who threw fist pumps and leg kicks after dessert night with their hall directors. Rumor is ya'll have a fist pump bulletin board on your wing. WERD.

Lastly, to the person who put this sign on one of the doors at the Appalachian State library, I HEART YOU. (Thanks Kara for the photo!). 

This week's FPF Challenge: take a photo of you and your homies throwing fist pumps and leg kicks with your furry loved ones. Bonus points for dogs with bandannas or horses that talk like Mr. Ed. (Of course all other entries will be accepted). Email photos to em{at}todaysletters{dot}com ... it's just that simple!

{Happy National Coffee Day!}

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Today is celebrating an addiction that most people seem to share. Coffee! Team Loerke encourages you to get out on National Coffee Day and support your local mom & pop roasteries and coffee shops. If you live in Dallas, be sure and stop by The Pearl Cup who will be offering 50% off a pastry with the order of a large coffee drink!

PS, anyone else ready for the weekend? Tomorrow Tim leaves for Oklahoma and I get to spend the day in Canton getting junk drunk with Girl Tyroch and Mary McGuire. (Flea markets will do that you know). What are you most looking forward to this weekend?

XOXO

{10 Things} That Made All The Difference In College

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I often receive emails and letters from college students asking for advice. The underling question is always the same: How do I do college well? Looking back, my 4 yrs at Taylor were incredibly life changing. There were several things I did right, and several things I did wrong. I am grateful for both experiences. Hopefully the following list of 10 things will encourage you on your collegiate journey!

1. Servant Leadership: It's easy to want to make a name for yourself on campus. Leadership positions are great, but "towels" are always more important than "titles." Always.

2. Solitude: Whether you're an introvert or extrovert make time to be alone. Find a place on campus where you can go re-center yourself. I used to sit on top of the soccer video taping tower. This was the one place I could cry, sing, and pray where no one else could hear me.

3. Study Abroad: I always tell students one of the best decisions I ever made was to spend a semester abroad. It changed my life. It can also be cheaper than a semester at your university, so look into it.

4. Stretch Yourself: Take elective classes that will challenge you to learn new things. My sophomore year I took folk dancing, astronomy, and photography. I ended up loving these classes more than I ever thought I would. 

5. Study: When I was in college Taylor cost $96.00 a day. Skipping class was liberating every once in a while, but going was more important. So was studying. Enjoy your freedom but don't abuse it.

6. Selflessness: College has the potential to become some of the most selfish years of your life. You eat when you want to eat, study when you want to study, and sleep when you want to sleep. Remember this life is not about you. Ever.

7. Stewardship: I spent more money my freshman year of college than all four years combined! I didn't have a budget which meant I wasn't saving anything. Whatever you do, don't graduate with credit card debt. Learn how to be responsible with what you've been given. 

8. Stories: My motto at Taylor was to "make a memory every day." This allowed me to be intentional with my time. Ride bikes at night, buy breakfast for your roommates, play intramurals, take spontaneous road trips, sneak into the art building and paint, surprise your family on the weekends, and learn how to cook something besides EasyMac and Ramen.

9. Self Work: I graduated high school an insecure, people pleasing, confused 18 yr old with a backpack full of relational and family baggage. I had no idea who I was or how I had been affected by my upbringing. Looking back I wish I would have been more intentional to sort through some of my hurts, habits, and hang-ups.

10a. Seek Peace: Handling conflict was not something I did well in college. I was a peace faker, not a peace maker. Instead of leaning into hard conversations I would sweep them under the rug. This caused more damage than good.

10b. Spirituality: Lastly, it's been said that those who follow the crowd end up getting lost in it. Take time to figure out what you believe. Without faith none of the above would be possible.   


Top 10 Books I Read in College: A Grief Observed, Ruthless Trust, The Way of the Heart, Celebration of Discipline, Blue Like Jazz, The Prophet, Connecting, The Return of the Prodigal Son, The 5 Love Languages, and Inspiration Sandwich.

Copyright © Today's Letters 2010-2012
Please contact before using images or content.

{Old Pine by Ben Howard}

Tuesday, September 27, 2011



Inspiration found at 1:40.

Old Pine - EP - Ben Howard

{Husband's Letters}

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Husband's Letters: Dear Mrs. Loerke, this weekend you let me borrow your fleece socks. This A) made me feel like Tom Cruise as I slid across the hardwoods B) gave me protection from all the dust bunnies C) filled my love bucket to the brim or D) all of the above. Dear Maine Root, you give me another reason to love seasonal beverages. Your Pumpkin Pie soda had a spiced finish that mirrored eating a slice of the real thing. Nice work. Dear Kansas City, I already miss your cool mornings, quaint neighborhoods, and incredible food. Not to mention a father-in-law who makes me feel like a champion. Dear Emma, this weekend I'll be in Oklahoma for my college guy reunion. Typically when I'm out of town you wear my underwear and sleep on my side of the biscuit. Reason #968 why girl roommates are awesome.

Love,
Mr. Loerke

What's your favorite kind of soda? Em and I don't drink soda often, but I'm a root beer guy and Em likes Izze.

{The City of Jazz & Barbeque}

Monday, September 26, 2011

While in Kansas City we ...

Woke up to this view.

Drank Caribou Coffee.

Ate cinnamon rolls from McLain's for brekky.

Visited St. Mary of the Pickle.

Saw the new tree sculpture at the Nelson.

Had wings at The Peanut.

Toured the Boulevard Brewery.



Saw beer stored in whisky barrels.

Split a full slab of ribs from Oklahoma Joe's.



Found little eggplants at the Farmer's Market.

Was inspired at the Plaza Art Fair.



Saw signs of Fall.



Bought paperwhite bulbs from Planters.



Made homemade tamales.


And smiled at the boys who sat on the front porch wearing their matching shirts. What a wonderful time in Kansas City! Can't wait to do it again next year.

Happy freakin Monday! How was your weekend? Did you see anything beautiful? Try something new? Eat something that made you thankful? See anything that inspired you? I'd love to hear about it!
xoxo

{Harvest Moon by Neil Young}

Sunday, September 25, 2011



Required Sunday afternoon listening.

Neil Young: Greatest Hits - Neil Young

{Fist Pump Friday!}

Friday, September 23, 2011

To kick off this week's photos we have Hailey and Ashley who threw fist pumps and leg kicks outside of the Memphis Farmer's Market. They also scored a John Denver album and a book of old poems at a flea market. These are my kind of girls!

Next meet Sarah pictured in Boston, MA with a box of cannolis from Mike's Pastry. Bonus points for visiting one of the coolest cities on Earth.


Our next photo is of Devin, Laura, Mallory, and Tim. These Auburn alumns recently visited NYC and threw fist pumps and leg kicks in honor of Cam Newton's Billboard in Time Square. War Eagle!

Next meet Kim and her boyfriend Kyle who threw fist pumps and leg kicks in Millennium Park. Ya'll are just about as cute as they come. (Seriously).


Our next photo is of Jenny and Patrick's 5 month old little girl Maggie from Nashville, TN. This cutie threw fist pumps in honor of finally making it to the weekend!

Lastly, meet McCall's daughter Libby who threw fist pumps with her Whoopie Pie. Bonus points for sharing in my love for these bite sized desserts of awesomeness!

Last weeks FPF photo Challenge still stands: take a photo of you and your homies throwing fist pumps and leg kicks at your favorite pizza joint. Bonus points for pepperoni eyes and sauce mustaches. (Of course all other entries will be accepted). Email photos to em{at}todaysletters{dot}com ... it's just that simple!

{Today's Letters}

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Today's Letters: Dear Mr. Loerke, sometimes you walk into the bathroom with your coffee grinder at 6am. This is so I can smell freshly ground coffee while brushing my teeth. Reason #266 why boy roommates are AWESOME. Dear Swig, Team Loerke thinks you have the best bar food in Dallas. Your wild mushroom, garlic butter, and brie flat bread made us forget all about your 4 page cerveza menu. Dear Fall, you are officially official starting tomorrow. Looking forward to comfort food in the crock pot, football, apple cider, and wool everything. Dear Husband, since we've met you've started eating mushrooms, onions, and olives. I've started eating jalapenos, hot sauce, and chocolate malts. I like how we've influenced each other.

What's something you refuse to eat? I know a girl at work who doesn't eat sandwiches. She says it's a texture thing.

{Today's Letters}

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Today's Letters: Dear Mr. Loerke, on Monday I got to spend the whole day at the Ranch. This is where you asked me to be your wife. (Insert one of my all time favorite places here). Dear Homies, a couple of nights ago Tim watched Rain Man for the first time. Since then he has A) convinced himself he needs to buy a suit from K-Mart B) asked me to TiVo Wapner C) wants to listen to 97X, BAM! The future of Rock 'n' Roll or D) all of the above. Dear Modern Family, so glad you're back like a brand new invention tonight! Thanks to you Tim Tam now thinks that every Asian baby is named Lily. Dear Husband, love you more than apples left on the rail. Over and out.

Speaking of Rain Man, what's one movie you think everyone should see at least once in their lifetime?

{Husband's Letters}

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Husband's Letters: Dear Mrs. Loerke, this weekend you took out my stitches. You were very gentle and instructive. I really think you would be a great PA! Dear Grief, I have become more familiar with you this week. Thankfully you have given me an opportunity to celebrate a dear friend's life. Dear Working Out, this summer made it challenging to be outside in the heat. Now that Fall is here we can become reacquainted. Dear Emma, after I returned from my PA conference this weekend you surprised me with amazing shrimp (AKA srrrimp) tacos. They were d-to-the-licious!

Love,
Mr. Loerke

What's your favorite kind of taco? Emma and I love anything with srrrimps and avo. Btw, there's still time left to jump on board as an October sponsor! Just email us for a rate sheet.

{Today's Letters}

Monday, September 19, 2011

Today's Letters: Dear Mr. Loerke, while you were gone I kept the thermostat set at 80°, averaged 9 hrs of sleep a night, and ate Peppermint Whoopie Pies for dinner. I needed a weekend like this. Dear Gourds, you're back! Missed you more than jumping into a pile of leaves with a wet sucker. Dear Self, doing what's urgent and doing what's important are two very different things. Sometimes I get these confused. Dear Husband, soon we will be stuffing our boca's with wings from The Peanut, touring the Boulevard Brewery, enjoying the Plaza Art Fair, and celebrating my Papa's 64th Birthday. Can't. stinkin. wait!

Happy Freakin Monday, Homies! What are you looking forward to this week? Btw, remember when I posted a tutorial a few weeks ago about my Burn Book? Since then I've had two dear friends loose their house in a fire and another dear friend unexpectedly lose her husband. Please, please, please start putting together your burn book! Both situations have been a great reminder that the last thing one wants to be worrying about in the midst of grieving is details regarding life insurance, paperwork, investments, etc. I still have some loose ends to tie with mine, so let's get 'er done!

{Fist Pump Friday!}

Friday, September 16, 2011

To kick off this week's photos we have Tami, Sarah, and Haley. These sisters threw fist pumps and leg kicks outside of the court house in Waxahachie. Bonus points for small towns with big character!


Next meet Brandy, Wes, Robbi, Suz, Mike & Holly who threw fist pumps and leg kicks after zip lining in Costa Rica. Rumor has it that the guys screamed like girls all the way down. Boys, please confirm. 

Our next photo is of high school seniors Taylor and Tiffany from & Powder Springs, GA. These two threw fist pumps and leg kicks before their varsity volleyball game. Congratulations girls, on your win!


Next meet Tara, Victoria, Ellie & Drew Holcomb, Samantha, Charlotte, and Lane. These Auburn sophomores had the time of their lives celebrating Samantha's birthday at the Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors concert. Talk about a birthday to remember!


Speaking of concerts, next meet Baylor seniors Kathryn and Christiana who threw fist pumps with musician Ben Rector at his performance last week in Waco. Congrats on cramming 500+ people in at Common Grounds, Mr. Rector!

Lastly, meet our FPF challenge winners Chris, Caitlin, Nathan, Lauren and Andrew who threw fist pumps and leg kicks at the Bon Iver show in Dallas Monday night. Pretty sure these guys deserve bonus points for attending one of the best concerts OF ALL TIME!

This week's FPF Challenge: take a photo of you and your homies throwing fist pumps and leg kicks at your favorite pizza joint. Bonus points for pepperoni eyes and sauce mustaches. (Of course all other entries will be accepted). Email photos to em{at}todaysletters{dot}com ... it's just that simple.

{Today's Letters}

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Today's Letters: Dear Mr. Loerke, last night you asked if you could make me breakfast before my 6:30am class. Your thoughtfulness challenges the heck out of me. Dear Homies, only 100 more days until we're all singing Fra ra ra ra ra and drinking our Ovaltine. Don't forget to make your paper chain countdowns! Dear Mary McGuire, yesterday you brought me a bag of dehydrated apples to work. Three points for the extra cinnamon, four points for making me feel loved and known. Dear Husband, tonight you leave for a PA conference in Galveston. Permission to wear your unmentionables while watching episodes of Bear Grylls? Over and out.

What's your favorite dehydrated fruit?

{Bon Iver Concert: Dallas}

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

There is only one word to describe the Bon Iver concert Monday night: MAGICAL! It was held at the new Winspear Opera House downtown which could quite possibly be my new favorite music venue OF ALL TIME. Isn't it bootyful?


Our 2nd row tickets were incredible. Pretty sure they left us wide eyed and speechless for 3 hours.


Justin's girlfriend Kathleen Edwards did an amazing job opening the show. I fell in love with her the minute she sang a song she wrote back in high school called, "Mercury." (You can listen to it here).



I know the quality isn't that great, but here's a video I took on my iPhone of Justin singing my favorite Bon Iver song. NOTE: Re: Stacks currently has 1,023 plays in my iTunes. I. need. help.


We also had the opportunity to meet a sweet couple who reads our blog. Emily & her boyfriend Josh are from Louisiana and have a blog here if you'd like to check it out. Em's a 2nd year PA student and had a 3 hour drive home after the show! The crazy things music will do to the soul ...

Any word on how the Bon Iver show in Austin was last night?
XOXO

{This Must Be The Place by Lost & Found Films}

Tuesday, September 13, 2011



Simplify {sim-pli-fy} v. to make easier to understand.

{Husband's Letters}

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Husband's Letters: Dr. Loerke, this weekend I had an unfortunate run-in with some rebar. None of my medical friends were available to help me so you bravely stepped up to the plate and stitched up my arm. I'm so proud of you for facing your fear of blood to help me. You're a natural! Dear Vynsie, Darren, & Nelson, we enjoyed hanging out with you last night before the show. Thanks for introducing us to Mai's! Dear Next 4 Weekends, you are packed with a PA conference, trip to Kansas City, reunion with my college guys, and camping with my bride. Even though I'm an extrovert I'm already looking forward to a Friday night at home. Dear Emma, I can't wait to go to the pumpkin patch with you! Just sayin.

Love,
Mr. Loerke

What are your favorite Fall traditions? Every October 1st Emma and I eat pumpkin pie, watch Charlie Brown's, "Great Pumpkin Escape," and dance to Santana's, "Black Magic Woman." It's something I look forward to every year!

PS, all suturing was done with a professional suture kit & lidocaine we had left over from Emma's race. Please don't try this at home ; )

{Today's Letters}

Monday, September 12, 2011

Today's Letters: Dear Mr. Loerke, this weekend our marriage experienced a new level of intimacy. You asked me to suture your arm in exchange for some ice cream. Reason #265 why boy roommates are AWESOME. Dear Corn & Shrimp Chowdah, holy seizures of awesomeness, Batman! Pretty sure you were packed with Fall and a fist pump of heartiness. We'll definitely be making you again soon! Dear Bottle Shop, you maybe might be our new favorite store on lower Greenville. Maybe. Dear Husband, tonight you see your first Bon Iver show. Be prepared to hear live music that will change your life. Over and out. 

If you could see anyone live in concert who would it be? (Insert Van Morrison here). Also, we are now accepting sponsors for October! Our blog receives over 200,000 pageviews per month and would love to have you jump on board. Just email me for a rate sheet!

Happy freakin Monday, Homies!

{Plum Jam by Carl Pendle}

Sunday, September 11, 2011



You're gonna love everything about this one: typewriters, jam, orchards ... and it's all put together by the amazing photographer, Carl Pendle. Enjoy!

Julie & Julia (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) - Alexandre Desplat

{Underground Love by And the Giraffe}

Saturday, September 10, 2011



Meet "And the Giraffe," a music duo made up of Nick Roberts and Josh Morris. Who knew 20 yr old college students could sound so good? Download their new EP "Something for Someone" here.

{Fist Pump Friday!}

Friday, September 09, 2011

To kick off this week's photos meet Rachel, Jason, Andrea, Tim and Megan over at The Organic Bloom. We think their handmade picture frames are the shiz! (Even singer/songwriter Jewel agrees).


Next meet Auburn seniors Claire, Valerie, Elizabeth, Paige, Camilla, Laurel, and Katelyn who threw fist pumps and leg kicks after Paige's candlelight. Congrats on your engagement, Little!


Our next photo is of Adam and Susan's 9 week old peanut, Grayson. Bonus points for your guitar playing stegosaurus and for being cute enough to eat!

Lastly, meet our FPF challenge winner's Chris, Kelly, Beth, and Katie who threw fist pumps last wekend at Baylor's season opener against TCU. One word for you four: SICEMBEARS!

This week's FPF Challenge: take a photo of you and your homies throwing fist pumps at the Bon Iver concert in Dallas this Monday night. Bonus points if you can find Tim, Vynsie and I in the 2nd row! (Of course all other entries will be accepted). Email photos to em{at}todaysletters{dot}com ... it's just that simple.
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