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!!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Praire Fire Spring Half

Last Sunday I checked off a bucket list item. To finish a Prairie Fire race.

Back in December, during a random evening I was feeling very ambitious, I signed up for the back to back challenge. This means I would do a race in the spring, and then one in the fall, and come home with special swag if I completed both.  And I love me some swag.   So, I chose a 5K for the spring, and a half marathon for the fall.  

The weekend and race were amazing. Lori and I took off on Saturday.  We shopped, ate new food, and giggled randomly in the darkness when we should have been sleeping.

The race was just a wonderful experience. This was the biggest race I've ever done. With the 5 and the half, they announced there was 2,400+ runners.

I ended up taking over 4 mins off my last 5K time.

Which I will take!

This winter, after an attempt to run on a really cold day, I noticed I was wheezing.  Not long after I was diagnosed with exercise induced asthma.  (Yes, my post before this was about my cholesterol. I'm a mess.) This has taken me a little bit of getting used to. All this time I was convinced the reason I couldn't breathe was because I was fat and out of shape..which is still true!  But I ended up being a little shocked at just how much AIR I WASN'T getting. It makes a world of difference when you can breathe!

These are the only race pictures that will see the light of day. My other ones...well, ..have you ever seen the beginning of Turner and Hooch? I look like the dog running in slow motion.  Don't remember?? Here..

Lori won 1st in age group!  

I'm excited for the fall race!!! Remind me I said this later!! ;) 

Friday, April 3, 2015

I Lost

A couple of weeks ago, Danny and I had went to our local health fair to have a lab work up.  We placed a $5 bet on who had the better cholesterol levels. I knew I had that bad boy already in the bag.

I lost.

By a lot.


ME!! The vegetable loving, greek yogurt eating, walking miles, race loving, ME ...LOST to my 3 at a time Jeno pizza, hostess donuts by the bag eating, bacon loving,  husband


I opened up that envelope and ugly cried at my table. Danny quickly assured me he was SURE it was not so much as my diet, as it was my genes, and to make an appointment with our Dr.  He was right.

This scares me so much.  My grandmother and my father lost their lives from cardiac issues, as did one of my grandmother's brothers, at a really young age.

This wasn't going to happen to me. Come on! I don't smoke, eat pretty healthy already, I've lost weight, read labels, I give Danny so much crap for what he eats. I exercise pretty faithfully spring-fall..(Stupid winter)

I feel a lot better now that I have a plan with my Dr.

 I was so stinking blindsided by this, and I really should have actually been expecting it.

I've also begged both of my siblings to go get theirs checked.

Danny's cholesterol numbers and some of his other tests weren't that whoopy either, so our kitchen has had a major food purge.

Let the adventures begin!!

Please pass the oatmeal...and the fish oil.

Bottoms up!!

BTW--have YOU had YOUR cholesterol checked lately?

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Spring is HERE!!

I swear I'm here!!!  Super busy, yet...there seemed nothing of importance to write about!!!

But Spring is here, and that is something to celebrate!  It felt like the longest winter of my life...but we were also grieving for the second winter in a row...that makes for some really long and dark days.  I'm also convinced I suffer from seasonal depression. Just when I think I can not stand it anymore, here comes spring!!

Let's see..  Golf has started for both  my boys. That means our routine is shot, and we are trying to figure out the new one!! 9 more weeks until summer, and this mom can HARDLY wait!!  Tristen has his first job, working at the same place as his Dad.  Jacob was recently made part time supervisor at the grocery store he works at. I've got all the cool weather crops in my buckets, and will get my tomatoes and peppers in just as soon as they hit the shelves.  Danny has his potatoes in the ground. The guys will be going to a pig auction this weekend, to pick up pigs for fair projects.

With spring comes babies, and we have several nestboxes of baby bunnies.  Danny recently built is own barn, for his own project, and is already wanting to add on and expand.

We recently went to one of our favorite shows...The Windy Plains Spring Fling. This year it was held in Garden City.  The last show I went to was in October, and that was just Tristen and I. The last show we went to as a family was almost a year ago. I was happy to load all of us up, and head out, with no thought at all at winning anything. I just wanted to see the people and be stuck in the car with my family for a few hours!!

Jacob no longer has rabbits, so he asked to take comments for a judge all day. He seemed to really enjoy his time.  I received a 1st place Black SR buck Havana in one show, always getting beat my friend Sarah. Her rabbits are killer. (She later won BIS in BOTH shows in the Open, and also added a reserve or 2nd in the other)

Tristen won breed and best opposite Dutch in both youth shows. He was a bit shocked to see several exhibitors of Dutch and several varieties show up. (There aren't very many Dutch breeders in Kansas, these people had come in from Colorado)   He won with a set of blues in one show, and a tort buck and a black doe in the other.   He was trying to convince us to leave, before the Best in Show judging. He was tired, and "Dutch usually don't win BIS."   Sarah and I both tried to tell him that yes, they do..and that we were not leaving.

The first show he put his tort up. I heard them announce the 1st and 2nd Reserve, and then I heard Best in show today will be the DUTCH.

Tristen's jaw hit the floor.  And then the "we told you so's" started in.

Tristen and Judge Blaine Maier

This is Tristen's very first Best in Show and he won some cash. The tort was DONE and refuses to sit still any longer.

His tort, Wiggle, has done well for him every time he has shown him.  But a few weeks after his last show, T and I were feeding in the barn, and heard someone start choking and coughing. It was him. The idiot had a mouthful of feed, got a drink, and choked up. I'll save you the details, but had we not been there, he would have been found dead in his cage, with us wondering what in the world happened.

Sometimes I think a kick butt show is almost better than a really bad one--Sunday found Tristen busy evaluating, culling hard, and breeding even harder, making soon-to-be hopefuls for the fall season.

I also came home with a breeding pair of mini satins, and a obber sweet Champagne buck, for a family in our town who is just starting in rabbits.   And a very cute Havana doe I can't  wait to grows a bit more so I can breed her!

On the way home, I thought about just how many places, experiences, and people we have met...that  all started with a couple of 4-H rabbits  named Carly and Bulls-eye.

Happy SPRING!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Christmas Vacation

The weekend after Christmas, my crew packed up mid morning and headed to Kansas City for a little mini Christmas vacation.

In a funny turn of events, I was laying on the bed girl talking with my sister on Thanksgiving Day, and it mentioned that we had got tickets to surprise the boys on Christmas morning. She acted shocked and then started laughing...she had gotten Tarquin tickets to the same game for Christmas!!!

So we met up and enjoyed a nice meal together Saturday evening.  After our dinner, the guys and I headed to the Plaza to see the lights. I have heard about these lights for many years. This is one of the things Danny always talks about when he talks about his childhood Christmas's.  It was so beautiful!! We were even stopped in the road for horse drawn carriages to cross...and now I've added going and doing that some year to my bucket list!!

Sunday was the big game. We headed over to Krispy Kreme, where we got a few hot donuts, and off we went. I quickly felt like I had stepped into the twilight zone. I just THOUGHT Danny and the boys were hard core fans. I was wrong. It could be SO much worse!  We drove by lots of tailgaters. Drunk and drinking tailgaters. At 10:30am on a Sunday!

The game was a dream come true for 3 out of 4 of us. The other one of us...well, I enjoyed the experience.  But I'm not a cold weather person. Or a crowd person. Heights bother me. And loud and obnoxious drunk people annoy me. (Sheesh--I sound like I'm 100 years old, don't I?)  But it was amazing to be with my guys!!

This is how I spent 85% of the game. If I tilted my head back a little, I could see the game just fine. My feet were numb and hurt so bad. They finally got back to normal about halfway home from KC. I even wore running pants under my jeans and thought if I wore my boots instead of my tennis shoes, they would be warmer. They were not. 

This is what $10.25 hot chocolate looks like. I was cold. And desperate. And weak.
 I'm so ashamed.

Remember what I said about crowds? And heights? ;)

All and all it was a great weekend!! Oh, and they won!!