#RaisedRoyal and #RaisingRoyal

#RaisedRoyal and #RaisingRoyal

How I was Raised Royal and will be Raising Royal.

I absolutely love the slogan for the 2017 Kansas City Royals season.

#RaisedRoyal pays tribute to those of us that have been there through it all. Those of us who grew up absolutely despising talk radio, except for the man himself, Denny Matthews. (Seriously, his voice is like being wrapped in a warm towel coming straight out of the dryer. He is the Vin Scully of the Midwest)

For the games we couldn't attend, we would tune in to listen to Denny Matthews paint us a picture of the game so vivid it felt like you were there.

#RaisedRoyal pays tribute to those of us that remember when the local radio stations used to play their own remix of Bad Day by Daniel Powter.

Instead of 'So you had a bad day' it was,

'So you had a bad game..'

Yes. We were that bad.

I used to spend my days leading up to summer anxiously awaiting our annual 'family trips to the K'. Longing to hear the rip of the bat against the ball as cheers echo throughout the, mostly filled stadiums.

(There were some tough years in the past, HyVee tickets used to be practically free just trying to bring people in.)

As it got closer and closer to baseball season you could almost taste the frozen lemonade and hear the lemonade guy in your head.. You know who I'm talking about.


I miss him.

No matter how bad we were during our off years, the games were always still so fun. Listening to Denny Matthews on the radio made you wish you were there. Our boys in blue still found ways to make the games exciting. There is never a boring moment in Kauffman stadium. Surrounded by our boys in blue, fans screaming till their faces turn blue, all this excitement happening in a sea so beautifully blue the ocean would be jealous.

As a new mom making her way through her twenties, I think I finally understand just how important the Royals have been throughout my life.

So many memories throughout my childhood years, my awkward years, my teenage years and my first adult years have to do with cheering the Royals on to victory or sulking in the sadness and anger of a tough loss. (Yes, I still hate the Giants. No I'm not over game 7.)

My first athlete crushes were on Mike Sweeney and Joe Randa. But then Hosmer came along and stole my heart. I'm sorry, but he's quite the catch. LOL. (No seriously Eric, my dugout or yours?)

My family both immediate and extended, would try to make it to as many games as we could. My Grandpa and Grammy even made it to a few games and what a blessing that was. In fact, my Grandpa was the one who told me,

"There is nothing better than cold beer and baseball."

And every game we made it to, I would beg my mom for cotton candy; and 90% of the time she said no.

My closet has always been 80% Royals gear.

Our Summer's always revolved around the Royals, and I'd love nothing more than to share those same experiences with my son and for him to create his own memories.

So he can be #RaisedRoyal just as I was.

So he can be shown on the jumbotron as many times as I have.

Seriously, my cousin and I have made it on the jumbotron dancing like fools more times than I can accurately remember. But being their surrounded by great family, fans and even better music... (Friends in Low Places, anyone?) made those moments some of the happiest moments of my life so far.

As Kansas Citians I think there for a while we were all kind of bracing ourselves to be the next Chicago Cubs and go 108 years without a World Series win. Which would've meant most of us would've gone our whole lives without seeing a post season.

But our boys in blue put in the blood, sweat and tears to give us two post seasons back to back.

Two World Series back to back. We made it to game 7 in 2014 and then went on to WIN the 2015 World Series?! Sometimes it still feels like a dream.

When I went to Game 4 of the Royals vs Orioles American League Championship, that definitely felt like a dream. To be there with my Papa, the one who taught me the beauty of baseball, and see our boys clinch the World Series; it still feels unreal.

The 2014 and 2015 Royals brought a whole new magic to KC. They brought us the blue October KC had been longing for. They gave us memories we will never forget.

They brought us together as a community.

A community gathered to rally around our boys in blue as they went for the crown. There was a magic in the air throughout all of KC during the postseasons that were unforgettable.

We've lost a few of those key players to other teams, and we've lost our Ace to the big man upstairs, but for those of us #RaisedRoyal, they will forever hold a special place in our hearts.

I could write about the Royals and all of the emotions they've brought me throughout my life forever, but those reasons are just a few of many why I was #RaisedRoyal and why I will be raising my son Royal!

In other news.....

Is it Opening Day yet?!

Cover Image Credit: Meghan Harre

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Top 5 Nike NBA City Edition Jerseys

The best looks from Nike's second alternate jersey batch.

Nike's takeover of the NBA has been an up and down ride to this point. Although the on-court products are extremely aesthetically pleasing, there have been quality concerns, with numerous ripped jerseys and the lack of special Christmas Day uniform editions for the first time since 2011, a tradition that NBA fans have come to love. However, Nike's idea of visually representing the passion, culture, and voice of each city has inspired some of the most unique jerseys in years, and here's the five best of an exciting bunch.

5. Milwaukee Bucks

The cream color combined with the logo as the centerpiece makes this jersey absolutely fantastic, and it's going to look great on television.

4. Golden State Warriors

Effectively capturing the vibe of such a free-flowing and culturally distinct place such as San Francisco was always going to be difficult, but the Warriors got it spot on here. The Chinese influence is clearly present alongside a crisp homage to the Bay Area, and the Warriors status as the only team that bridges the gap between San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose.

3. Utah Jazz

As a complete 180 from the Jazz' typical blue, green, and gold look, this stark contrast of a uniform should be used as often as possible. The ascending color scheme gives off the vibe of a rising altitude, a perfect encapsulation of Salt Lake City and the mountain lifestyle present there. The design on the right sleeve further displays this sweet tribute to Utah.

2. Washington Wizards

If you had told me that the cleanest look of the City Edition jerseys would also have said "The District of Columbia" on it in its entirety, I would've told you that you were crazy. However, a crisp white jersey alongside a brilliant use of red stripes down either side combined with easily the best number font in the NBA this season gives the nation's capital another great look to add to its already-stellar collection.

1. Los Angeles Lakers

Although this one took a while to grow on me, as a Lakers fan, this jersey is simply too sweet to pass up at the number one spot. Designed by the ultimate Laker legend himself, Kobe Bryant, a player good enough to have two jerseys retired in his honor, the "Black Mamba look tips its cap to the latest era of Hollywood dominance, with Kobe bringing 5 titles back home to SoCal. The snake scales combined with the return of the Magic Johnson-era block numbers create an epic silhouette of the past, and the 24 (Kobe's number) on the belt look like both a snake and "LA". It's absolutely brilliant and is easily the Lakers best black look since they began regularly utilizing black alternates on "Hollywood Nights", and I can't wait to sit down and watch a game at Staples with these unis on the court.

Cover Image Credit: YouTube

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If Medically Cleared, Gordon Hayward Should Still Stay Out For This Season

After suffering an injury like that, there's no need to rush back at all. The NBA continues to pray for you, Gordon.

It's hard to believe that it's only been almost three months since Celtics Gordon Hayward suffered a horrific ankle injury back in October. Since then, basketball fans have been able to catch a few glimpses into Hayward's progress--along with a few reports noting his recovery going well--mainly consisting of him in a cast and sitting on a bench.

However, last Wednesday Celtics general manager Danny Ainge subtly teased us that Hayward isn't wearing his ankle brace:

First of all - ?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!??!?!?!!?!?

Second of all - Gordon, please. Don't. tease. us.

With this new image and rumors of his return later in the season floating about, it all comes down to the question: "Should he return this season?"

And the answer to that is -- NO.

Boston is (as of Jan. 10) 33-10, ranking No. 1 in the Eastern Conference while also beating the conference rival the Cleveland Cavaliers by five and a half games.

They have quickly adjusted with their new team of Kyrie Irving, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, Al Horford and just about everyone else on the team. They've learned how to effectively utilize their weapons thanks to their stupendous head coach Brad Stevens.

Gordon, there's no need to rush at all.

Injuries are one of the most traumatic experiences anyone can go through and, especially in his case, it's something that no one should rush back from.

Of course there's always going to be the argument of: "But the Golden State Warriors are still their biggest threat, how will the Celtics do it without Hayward?"

The simple answer to that is, they still can. Can we maybe just stop doubting teams for one second?

Boston is trailing right behind Golden State; don't act like they don't have the talent and hustle to catch up.

Besides, if Hayward does return this season, he most likely won't be 100% healthy by then, thus risking the possibility of not even having a chance to make a championship run with his new team.

Long story short, he has three more years on his contract, he's still relatively young and the team is still young. I don't see what the rush is.

Cover Image Credit: No Limit McCowan

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