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Beyonce steps in the editor’s chair for the July issue of Essence. This is Beyonce’s first published story and in the six page spread she shares everything from her greatest childhood memories at the rodeo, to visiting the pyramids in Egypt.

On the rodeo: “It was like the biggest family picnic; there was laughter and music everywhere and everyone dressed in their Texas finest. I love watching all the people. We’d eat fried Snickers, funnel cakes, and fried turkey legs; the smell was the best mixture of spicy and sweet.

On her mother: “Tina Knowles was my first example of what a powerful woman is. She shaped my thinking not so much by what she said, but what she did. My mother taught me the principles of hard work, setting my own goals and visualizing my future.

On visiting the pyramids: “Egypt was the best. When I visited the pyramids, I had an experience I’ll never forget:I started singing “Ava Maria” inside the pyramid. The depth of the tomb was incredible. I’ve never heard acoustics so clear. My voice sounded so pure. It was inconceivable. I could have stayed in there forever.

On taking a break: “After the tour ended in Trinidad in late February, at last I focused on taking some time off. I had talked about taking a vacation before, but always ended up in the studio after two weeks. This time, though, I was serious. I was going to give myself a year to do all the things I never get to do. Simple things like play with my nephew, pick him up from school, visit museums, go to concerts, see some Broadway shows, learn to cook a meal and spend time with my husband.

Beyonce is gearing up for the release of her new album “4” on June 28th.

Click next to check out pics from her rodeo inspired Essence shoot.

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Even in a pair of chaps, Beyonce is a beauty.

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Beyonce practicing her lassoing.

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Beyonce channels her Houston, Texas roots.

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You can take the girl out the country, but you can’t take the country out the girl.

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Beyonce doning Texas’s signature look – a cowboy hat.