Plenty of cowboy hats were seen at Lubbock's National Cowboy Symposium, an event that offers lots of reasons to be proud of our heritage and strive to keep it alive.

I am dedicated to honoring the cowboy spirit. We need to stand for something worthwhile and not fall for anything -- to quote a bit of a great old Aaron Tippin song. A lot like the cowboy who made the incredible candles (my Blazin' Saddles candle smells nothing short of remarkable) at this event, I hung on to my flip phone for a while. But just because we utilize technology doesn't mean we will forget.

There's nothing like authentic, homegrown and handmade, and there's nothing like the cowboy spirit that still rides tall across our ranch lands and in unexpected places in our towns today. The hand-tooled attention to detail on display at the National Cowboy Symposium captured at least some of the heart of it, and the good folks who shared their stories completed the picture. I thoroughly enjoyed it!