Wednesday, August 14, 2019

We Went To The Beach

*I published this in 2019, but this trip was for Tristen's senior trip in the summer of 2017

We just got back from a week of sand, surf, and shrimp at Galvestion.  It was an amazing trip, where we did a whole lot of NOTHING.

Our house was ocean front. A cute little shabby chic house on stilts, that swayed in the ocean wind. It felt like one of our little Kansas earthquakes about every 30 seconds.   I drank coffee on the deck every single morning, and Danny laid in the hammock every afternoon.

I was a little worried about the weather. Tropical Storm Cindy was suppose to hit while we were there. People started sending texts and checking on us, so I looked at the weather and chuckled. The part that was suppose to hit us was just a mix of green and yellow on the radar...a nice soft rain back in Kansas. There was one night where the rain woke up Tristen, as his windows had the metal shields down on them, and it was loud, and he said the wind was blowing the house pretty good. But we never heard it.

Tristen learned how to skim board on this trip. We had plans to go parasailing, and then had plans to go do surfing lessons, but he instead worked on mastering his board. We laughed a lot, and he got pretty bruised up from his attempts, but was pretty good at it by the time we left.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Well, HELLO!!

Holy cow!! Has it really been over a year since I've blogged anything?? WOW!! Thought I'd bounce in here and give you all a very over due update on our family!!


Jacob graduated last spring, and has officially finished his first year of college towards a criminal justice degree! His mother did well through this process. She hardly cried when she dropped him off at college, but cried every time he pulled out of the driveway when he was home for visits.  He is currently back home, has moved in with a buddy of his, and is working for a rancher this summer.
He was one of thirty accepted out of 200 applicants to the Kansas Collegiate Law Enforcement Academy, but a few days before he got sick and was unable to go.
He is a volunteer firemen for our community, and stressed his mom COMPLETELY out in March. He decided to come home from school one weekend because there was a high fire risk, and he ending up helping fight the Starbuck Fire. I laid on my couch and listened the scanner off and on all night long that first night.




*He reminds me of my Dad, which breaks my heart at times, and fills it with joy, all at the same time.

Tristen: Officially a SENIOR and his mother CAN NOT believe it!!!  He is working as a life guard this summer, as well as working in the same wood shop his Dad works in.  He keeps busy, and has quite the social life and love for his cell phone. He is still active in 4-H, though his projects have scaled back tremendously as he has grown. He got to go with his team to state golf, which was quite the experience. He played very well that day!  He's enjoying the life as the only kid left in the house. Still can't decide WHAT in the WORLD he wants to do when he graduates, and some days I think he stresses over this way too much. He doesn't listen to his parents when we tell him that it's ok to not know yet.  Tristen is the more patient of my two boys, and enjoys being around little kids more than his brother.  We had an incident in November, that I think needs forever memorialized in this blog. I received a call from the school, that Tristen had done a BACK.FLIP.OFF.THE.STAGE and had LANDED.ON.HIS.FACE. After a trip to the ER...because I was SURE his NECK was BROKE...he was cleared of injury. Except the shiner that would soon develop!! Almost 8 months later he STILL has a bump under his eyebrow!




*He turns my hair grey, makes me laugh a 100 times a day, and his wit and humor amaze me.

Danny: Fills his days daydreaming of the empty nest that seems so close now! ;)  We have plans to go to the beach very soon, and he's got some really big plans of doing absolutely nothing except a little fishing!  He keeps busy with the endless honey-do's, fair board president, fence building, pig raising, cattle raising,  baseball watching, (GO ROYALS!)  and boy raising, in addition to his full time job at the wood shop here in town.



Becky: And me... This past year was full of a lot of personal changes. I can't tell you what happened, but for a long time I felt stuck. Like my brain was dying. Or a better way to describe it I guess is I just felt lost. My kids are almost grown..I have no idea how to be this person in the stage of life.
So one day I decided it was time to step it up, and I decided to take on getting my CDA in family child care. This required me have 480 hours of professional work experience, have 120 hours of formal early childhood education training, pass a written test, prepare a CDA portfolio, and pass a verification visit with an observer. It took me right at a year to complete everything. I was officially awarded my CDA on August 2nd!
I also finished my 2nd half marathon in May. I took 15 minutes off my last half, walked outside of the runner's world set up at the run, and barfed all over my new Saucony's. But it was totally worth it! HA! (And then I was the girl who had to walk THROUGH the HYATT, to get to our room... with BARF on my shoes.)  I'm signed up to do another in October, and I'm hoping to take a little more time off. I'm still slower than snails, but I finish! I also hit a PR for my 5K time in December.  The things I do for fun these day were not even on my radar 4 years ago. I try to remember that when I start to feel bad about slow weight loss journey!



I've enjoyed the Iris show in my yard this year. This beauty above came from a sweet older man at the farmers market in Dodge. He tossed it in with the rest of my purchase, and told me it was GUARANTEED to make me smile. He was right!


The garden is in, and everything has enjoyed the spring rains we've been receiving! Along with my normal vegetables I plant, this year I added several rows of different kinds of flower seeds in hopes of attracting even more pollinators.

Thanks for checking in on me, and if your still reading this tired old blog, BLESS YOU! Maybe I'll start blogging a little more. Or maybe I won't. ;) But I promise it won't be a year before I update again. I have blog shame!

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Me in 2016

I love New Years. It always feels so fresh and clean.

I've started thinking about a few things I want to work on in 2016.

1. Finally continue on my weight loss journey, after a "slight" pause since my Dad died.  I've learned so much about myself during this time.    I've got a few kick butt and fun things lined up to get me going, including a diet bet with 50+ other people, and a 12 week weight loss challenge group.

2.  Be better at saving money.  Blah. I suck so much at this, and don't want to anymore. I'd also really love to have our savings account happy and ready for next Christmas, so that stress isn't there next December.

3. This year I'm going to learn Calligraphy. Weird and random, I know. But I've always wanted to learn.

4.  Write here more.  Its not that I don't have the time. I just don't MAKE the time. And I love writing. And need to write.

On my business end of my life, I'm doing some pretty amazing things, which includes a little bit of learning, and a few changes.  One of those being changing the way I do my billing, (from hourly to a flat weekly rate)  and will hopefully be more consistent income for my family.  This one is actually really huge for me. I hate change. And hate upsetting or inconveniencing people.  What I finally realized one day was in exchange for people not being inconvenienced, I was the one being constantly getting the bad end of the stick. (I made $2.75 an hr one morning this week.)
Its all part of the "Becky grows a spine" journey.  I may have the start of a nub!! ;)

Happy New Years!!

Monday, December 28, 2015

HOORAY!! An Update!!

I last updated in October, after my first half. I've had 3 days off, and as I'm writing this, there is a blizzard warning here in Kansas, so I've got plenty of time to update you on us.

2 weeks after my first half, I did Run for Missons. I also sweet talked Tristen into running it with me. He kicked some butt and ended up running the entire thing and finishing in 23:58.(7:43 per mile)   I was super proud and  have started harassing him about cross country next year.   I didn't do nearly as well as him..;)...but was only a minute something short of  my "someday I want to run a 5K in this time" time.   Slow and steady.    It was a wonderful cool and wet day to run.  And sadly, it was literally the last time I have done anything active.  I'll be needing to change that soon!


We spent Thanksgiving with Danny's family. We ended up renting the Vet's Building here in town, because the family has grown so much. BUT--weather came rolling in and some were not able to make it.  I had  already invited my momma, and then we called my brother and his family when I found out they were home.  There was  a LOT of food!!

Tristen and his cousin, Alex. Its a sad shame they look NOTHING alike, isn't it?? ;)

Selfie with my Mom

"Smile," I said, "and I'll send this to your sister."  
FINALLY felt more like myself this Christmas.  My Dad has been gone for 2 years now, and this was our 3rd Christmas without him. Still feels a little wobbly and awkward. Last year we were dealing with the loss of Danny's Dad, so this year we quietly tip-toed and where just thankful to "be".

This was a really busy month. Tristen  got a job at our local grocery store, where Jacob works also. He seems to really be enjoying the extra cash!!

My favorite drummer at the school music program. 

Jacob got this dude earlier this week.  Second time bow hunting!  And Santa was nice enough to bring him a cross bow. Love that Santa!! (I can't believe he is a senior! Waaaaaa!!)


Last weekend I kept Jayden so his mommy and Daddy could go to a Chiefs game. I had the BRILLIANT idea to take a picture of all the grandkids for my Mom. The last one we had taken Hope was the youngest, and she was just 2 months old or so.  We've added 2.   It probably wasn't the best time, as the 2 girls were sick.  But it went about as well as herding wet and angry cats. 


Jacob may have muttered something about never having kids as he walked away.

We did manage to get one half way decent picture.  Next time we try this maybe the weather will be warmer and moods better!!! 

Mistletoe Max was back again this year. Danny and I have so much fun with that silly little elf. My daycare kids love him so much. This year his antics included flying around the dining room in a toy play (Hung by fishing line), making snow angels in sprinkles,  putting bows all over the kitchen cabinets...

In the off time, he also enjoys harassing Tristen just a little bit--who finds "the elf" just A LITTLE creepy. 


If you've made it this far, thank you for checking in on us!!! As I'm finishing this up, the wind is howling and the storm is just getting to us.   There may be a post soon about "the blizzard of 2015!"

*Update on the "Blizzard."  Nothing. Not even a snowflake. Not a one!*

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Prairie Fire--The Race

*Hi there. Yes! Another blog break! But I have a good excuse! I've been having issues getting logged into my flickr account. So frustrating.  I have several things I'd like to blog about. I always give the excuse "I'm living life instead of writing about it", but there are a few things I'd like to get into my blog, so I don't forget! This is one of them!! I hope that as the fall settles in, I can find a little more time for writing!! Thanks for sticking with me! =) * 

Sunday, October 11th, 2015.

I FINISHED Prairie Fire 1/2 Marathon.

13.1 Miles

I used a training plan that was16 weeks.  I ended up having the last week disrupted due to a murder suspect on the run in our county. True story!! So I was a little nervous as I'd only been able to hit 9 miles.

I'd also like to add that I didn't lose ONE.STINKING.POUND through training. (But I maintained at least!)  But did lose 3  the week after the race.  I was SO hungry during the last 6 weeks. I wanted to eat all the time.  I could never ever train for a full...I'd probably gain 50 lbs.

I had wanted to "quietly"  dedicate my very first half to my Dad, and wanted a piece him of him with me. So ended up putting his 7 year AA sobriety chip on my shoe lace, and tucking it inside. I love it so much..I think it will just stay there forever.


30 seconds before start. This is when I started thinking "What in the world do I think I am doing??"



You know those zombie movies? Where everyone is still walking with arms straight out?? Yep. That's totally how it was those last 3.  I tried to run. My body felt like it was underwater.  I walked. Like a zombie. For 3 miles.

See..told ya! Zombies! ;)

The most amazing experience through this entire doing something your mind is telling you is totally insane and you must stop. And plowing through and finishing anyway.

I ended up hitting a pretty hard wall around mile 10. Was CERTAIN mile 11 wasn't ever going to com.

I also can't tell you what exactly happened at mile 12.5. But I totally emotionally fell apart. You would think after 12.5 miles the excitement would carry you in, but it doesn't. You start to think you are never going to get there or WON'T be able to make it there.  I could HEAR the finish line, and the cheers. But I was convinced I wasn't going to make it.

 I can tell you what song came through my headphones at this time. The One I'm Running to by 7eventh Time Down.   Not a coincidence I'm sure, and I found myself trying to talk myself down from panic, and hanging on to every single word.

And until I hit the bridge that would take me it...I still didn't believe it. As strange as it sounds, I never thought about quitting, but had started to doubt if I would finish. Doesn't make sense, huh?

I don't have a glorious running in, hands in the air victory finish like some.

So tired!! Only .10 more to go to the finish line!  

But I finished...13.1!
My sister made me laugh when she saw this.. "There you are working your butt off, and that guy is drinking a beer in the background."  HAHA

First thing I wanted, was a shower.  You know that first shower you take, after you've given birth? Yep--same feeling.

This experience is most definitely in the top 5 proudest moments of my life. There is nothing I can type here that can tell you how I felt.

Some of my favorite moments from the race?

At mile 2, there was a lady with a mega phone yelling "You are ALMOST there"  Ugh. It made me smile and shake my head.

There was app you could download, and people at home could track you, if THEY had the app. It had a "cheer" option.  People at home could pick out the cheesiest of cheers and they could come through my headphones.  This was fantastic.I loved it so much.  I didn't know at the time who they were from, (It saved them, so I could look when I was finished." just that someone I love, was thinking about me.

We ran the course with the full marathon people. There was just 2 different loops where they cut off from us for an extra 6 miles each, and then they would merge back in with us.  Oh was like corvettes merging in with a bunch of Yugos.  Those people were like machines. I was in awe of them, and how they were still managing conversations, and would support other runners as they whizzed by us.

The signs were HILARIOUS.

They had bands at many mile points.  It was very cool.

I crossed the line, found Lori, and sat down. My stomach was yucky, but I got part of a Gatorade and a bottle of water down.  I saw and watched the Marathoners coming in, and they were handed 32oz Michelob Ultras as they crossed.  No. Just no.


I didn't put these away for a week. I just kept picking them up and looking at them. 


It was just an incredible experience. All of it. From training to the race, I learned so much about so many things. I'm not sure 1/2's will ever be "my" thing to do regularly, but am not against doing another one...someday.   Which supports my theory races are a lot like birth, and a little bit of amnesia sets in so you will do it again. HA!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Ha Ha Tonka State Park and Bridal Cave

Wednesday we ventured into town, for groceries and a bit of sight seeing.  I've had Ha Ha Tonka park down on the must-do list since we booked this trip. Mostly..because it looked beautiful. And it was FREE. HA!

It didn't disappoint! We were able to make it to the castle ruins, the springs, the natural bridge, and did 1.75 mile trail before rain caused us to leave. We went back the following day and saw the river cave.   We saw many different kinds of wildflowers, and mushrooms, wildlife here and there, animal much fun!










When we got rained out of Ha Ha Tonka we decided to go tour Bridal Cave.

Oh gosh. It was so pretty.  The Indians used to crawl though and marry in front of the columns. They used to knock on them in celebration, and due to this there are chunks taken out of some of them. People still get married in there today.  Our guide told us they have had brides with trains that go back around in the cave, to brides in bikinis that come in off the lake.

One of the things I loved most about this cave was Mystery Lake.  They took out a small section out  so you can look down on it. Its called this because..its a mystery to why or how there is wood and a ladder at the bottom.  The lake is 20 foot deep.  They took a team down to carbon date it, and it started disintegrating when they touched it. So they just left everything.



I highly recommend a stop to these places if you happen to be in the area!!

Thanks for checking in on us! I have a an update in the works! Stop by again soon!!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Lake of the Ozarks

A few years ago, Danny and I decided to let our boys pick where they would like to go for vacation...within reason...the summer going into their senior year. Jacob picked going to Lake of the Ozarks, where he wanted "a house on the water, in the middle of nowhere, and he wanted to fish for a whole week."

I found myself in a bit of a panic after we started in on the roads, and my phone switched to "SEARCHING" for service.  It had NOTHING.  I found later that if you went out to the middle to end of the dock, you had a few bars and at least could send a text out.  We also had no internet.  Dan and I discussed the feelings that came with being totally cut off, and came to the conclusion that it must be left over "sick-dad syndrome."   We've taught ourselves to not be far from our phones or out of reach for so long, in case something happened.  After the first day, I realized it was just fine to be out of reach, and actually enjoyed it by the time we left.  And--who REALLY needs internet when you are at the lake???

Our house really was in the middle of no where. It took 30 mins of winding roads and hills to get us to and from town.  I'll add that about halfway there, my motion sickness kicked in.  I never felt sick when we were going TO town, but always did going BACK to the house.

Front door

This was the view when you came out our front door.

I went to bed and woke up every morning to THIS view!

Jacob caught this guy on some fishing line, with a hook, and some cheese. He spent hours hanging it from the dock, or from the bridge. 

We had 2 hammocks at the house. T doesn't enjoy fishing as much as the rest of us, so he spent a lot of time rocking back and forth, watching. 

THIS HILL!!! Was crazy!! Going DOWN it felt like you were going off a canyon. And we had to take our trash up to a the top of this hill and around another decent sized hill to an intersection.   It was a quarter of a mile up and back...and let me tell you...if you ever want to feel  what it's like to be an 80 year old cardiac patient with Emphysema, just go here to the land of hills and stairs!! WOW. 

We had an amazing time. We ended up catching about 100 fish in our time there.  We also enjoyed lots of other wildlife. As we went down to one of the roads going to our house for the first time, a red fox ran into the trees. We saw lots of deer, Pelicans, Egrets, chipmunks, lots and lots of different birds I've never seen or heard before, a flock of geese with goslings that just casually swam right by us one day, a big alligator turtle with 2 little babies that would sun on a log, and swim by like we were casual neighbors,  and a cotton mouth snake who must have lived close, as we saw him several times. We also saw a pair of cardinals in the exact same spot every time we went to town. We even started looking for them, and always found them. 

The morning after we arrived, Jacob got up early to fish, and was chased down our bridge by a hummingbird. I guess he thought Jake's red hat was a tasty snack.  The next time  we went to town I picked up a cheap feeder, and was delighted to see them visit and keep pretty close.  The day we left, I went to get the feeder and stood still by it, while a hummer sipped for the last time about a foot from me. He thought I was rather annoying but they certainly were not afraid of us. 

To save on our budget, we only ate out twice. It was only suppose to be once, but we ate at a place no one was really impressed with the first time, so we decided it didn't count. ;) I had menus planned for the entire week, and we cooked our meals at the house. I found it fun before the trip to plan out and came up with a few new things to try. One being:

Smore's DIP!

Layer Hershey bars in a small pan. Cut large marshmallows in half, put on top of candy bars, covering the top. Put in the oven at 425, and cook until the marshmallows brown. Serve with graham crackers. It was good stuff!

We did just a few touristy things--I have lots of pictures, so I'll save them for another post!!