Wake Up Wednesday: 3.4

Good morning everyone! I hope everyone is enjoying their week. We came back from the weekend with a nearly a foot and a half more snow then when we left. This week is Easter week, one of my favorite weeks of the year.

How are everyone’s brackets doing? Loyola-Chicago and Sister Jean have been quite the cinderella team this year, and I have Michigan in my finals, but I’d like to cheer on the Loyola-Chicago because they have had the ride of a life-time. And who wouldn’t want to cheer them on?

Alright, let’s get on with this day! Grab your drank.

Song of the Week: 

Buzzcut Season

– Lorde

A group of our friends went to Des Moines for a weekend get away. We concluded the weekend with attending the Lorde concert at the Well. Let me tell you, she is a great entertainer to say the least. I’d say she’s pretty underrated as an artist (strictly my opinion).

What are you looking forward to the most about aging after retirement?

I would love to be a part of a group of my friends who cackle, gossip, and drink coffee in the mornings uptown. Every time I see a group of ladies drinking their coffee, I fast forward to when I will be able to do that, and it brings a smile to my face every single time.


Quote of the Week:

God puts you where God needs you.

– Lawrence Kushner


What’s the funniest joke you know by heart?

How did Harry Potter get down the hill?


Walking………….. J.K. Rowling


Bible Verse of the Week: 

Don’t worry about anything;

instead pray about everything.

– Philippians 4:6


What game have you spent the most hours playing?

Clue Game

In college and even after college, our group of friends would play an endless amount Clue. We actually played it this weekend at a brewery.


Do you eat food that is past its expiration date if it still smells and looks fine?

Absolutely not! It weirds me out. I ate old cheese on accident one time, and it will forever leave an awful taste in my mouth.


That’s all for today! I hope everyone has a wonderful Hump Day and a great rest of the week! Have a wonderful Easter!



Wake Up Wednesday: 3.3

Good morning everyone. Yesterday was the first day of Spring, and although it didn’t feel like it, it is always nice to know it should be here soon! I hope this week and your NCAA brackets are treating you well. I know mine have not been.

Grab your coffee drink and let’s get to it.

Song of the Week: 

I’m Alright

Jo Dee Messina

This song has gotten me through the toughest of tough times; it has made me smile through the great times. I know that I’ll be alright through anything or any challenge I am presented with. I was born to be strong mentally, physically, and emotionally. God will get me through everything.

What’s the most depressing meal you have ever eaten?:

I decided to try to be an adult and order a hot beef plate one time. My co-workers like it and rave about it. One time it was the special at the local restaurant. I decided to order it – worst decision ever. I felt like I had aged 65 years and lost my taste buds. I knew then, that growing up was not for me, and I will stick to my flavorful meals.

Quote of the Week:

A diamond is a chunk of coal that did well under pressure.

– Unknown

Book of the Week:


This is the 5th book in the Evolve series written by S.E. Hall. I am now done with that series of books and am always looking for recommendations. This book was a short read, but I had to finish the series. Throughout the series, each book kept me entertained and coming back.

3 Things you remember about Kindergarten? 

1.Coming back inside from early morning recess on St. Patrick’s Day to find green glitter everywhere and a paper bag with a whole in the corner next to an open window. Our teacher told us she had caught the leprechaun. While she was monitoring recess, he must have gotten out. (First big disappointment in life ha.)

2. Our school was rather small, and we had two grades together for parts of and/or all day. During nap time, another of my great friends, I won’t mention names (Just initials: MME) fell asleep, and they let her sleep the rest of the day. I was so jealous, I actually tried to fall asleep at nap time after that; even when I did, they still woke me up. Must not have been as smart as they thought I needed more classroom time.

3. I have always been really creative and into coloring. I remember I would get upset if someone used the wrong color while coloring their picture. A hay stack is not supposed to be blue, end of story.

Bible Verse of the Week:

The Lord is greater than the giants you face.

1 John 4:4

What was the last photo you took?:

I took this photo yesterday while I was scoping out a cemetery trying to find a stone of someone who passed away in 1912. This cemetery is so unique and full of older stones and fences. I took this picture because I think it shares the personality and raw beauty of the cemetery.

That’s all for today! Happy Hump Day, I hope you all have a great week. Hopefully this cold weather will be out of here following the weekend.



Wake Up Wednesday: 3.2

Good morning! I hope everyone had a great week! March Madness is underway! I wish everyone the best of luck with their brackets.

Lately I have been adding a little almond milk to the coffee drink, and it is a nice little change. Change is good.

Let’s go get it this week! Grab your coffee mug.

Song of the Week:

In Case You Didn’t Know

Brett Young

Slowing it down just a little bit, this song speaks millions. It just gets me right in the feels. The simplicity and beauty in this song puts a smile on my face.

What is in your wallet right now?:


18 stamps

4 band-aids

Fortune cookie fortunes from every visit with Eric

Numerous punch cards to coffee places

Some plastic cards

A brochure from Schell’s Brewery in New Ulm, Minnesota

Quote of the Week:

The strongest people are not those who show strength in public but those that fight battles that no one else can see.

Bible Verse of the Week:

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.

Proverbs 4:23

What are 3 things you do everyday without fail?:

1.I always think about coffee and what’s for lunch in the first hour of waking up.

2. I always change into sweat pants as soon as I get home.

3. I look in the fridge numerous times when I am not even hungry or without taking anything out.

Book of the Week:

Sawyer Beckett’s Guide for Tools Looking to Date My Daughter

This is book 4.5 in the Evolve series written by S.E. Hall. This book is more comical than anything, it’s about a 25 minute read, but it is part of the series. I don’t think I would read it if I wasn’t reading the series, let alone in order.

What is one lesson you learned today?:

I learned to look in the fridge for milk before your pour your cereal into the bowl. I more than likely will do this again more than once or even twice before the end of this life, but dang it sure starts your morning off to an edgy start, especially when you look forward to breakfast each morning.

So here is your Wake Up! This weekend is St. Paddy’s Day, so wear your green and wake up your Irish side. Go out and do something with friends or family.


Sip, Sip, Gone…


Wake Up Wednesday: 3.1

Good morning everyone! Today is the first Wednesday of March, and we are quickly approaching March Madness time, one of my favorite parts of the year.  I usually don’t come out on top as the winner with my bracket, but I love to watch college ball, especially if Iowa State is in. Well it’s been a rough year for all of our Iowa teams.

Enough about March Madness, let’s get on with this Wednesday! Grab your caffeinated drink and leggo!

Song of the Week:


– Jack & Jack

This song is a good song to just jam a little too. It’s got a slow but upbeat rhythm that just makes me groove each time I hear it.

What color are you grateful for?

I am grateful for the color green. It is my favorite color, and I think the color just makes me think of life. It makes me think of growth; maybe the color of grass and trees that come back each spring has something to do with it.

Bible Verse of the Week:

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

2 Peter 3:9

What is your favorite hobby?

One of my most liked hobbies is decorating cakes and cupcakes. I started taking a liking to baking when I was young. I would bake with my mother and grandmother. I have always had a creative side, and wanted to utilize my abilities to bake as well as create. Some of my creations have been added below.

Chocolate Heath Bar Cupcakes – Chocolate Frosting

Harley Davidson Cupcakes – Almond Frosting/Black Chocolate Accent

Harley Davidson Wedding Cake

Ombre Wedding Cake

Harvest Birthday Cake


Mine Craft Cake

Quote of the Week: 

She finds peace in knowing God will always lead her exactly where she needs to be.

-Morgan Harper Nichols

Book of the Week: 


This is book 4 in the Evolve series by S.E. Hall. Each book is from a different couple’s perspective involved in their group of friends as they grow through the years.

When you were younger, where was your favorite place to hide? 

I loved to hide in the back of the pantry. It had plenty of room and I could always have a snack while I waited for someone to find me. Did I say I have a great relationship with food?

Well, that’s all for this week! I hope you have a great rest of the week. Tomorrow is already Friday-eve! You can do it!



A Letter to My Coaches

To whom this may concern (you know who you are),

Sports have been an extremely large part of my life since I was about 3 years old. Having a sister who was 19 months younger than I didn’t help my overly competitive personality and increased my interest in sports. For a chunk of my life, my mother coached my little league softball team, and although I didn’t particularly get along with her everyday, it has taught me a lot about respecting your parents as well as being a parent coach for the future. I can also honestly say that my mother didn’t play me because I was her daughter; she didn’t play me at all if I wasn’t anything but 100%, and that is another great lesson learned from my mother.

As I grew up, I had many coaches, and you all had one main goal to win, but I think it goes deeper than that. You wanted each of us to succeed on and off the field/court. You genuinely cared about our well-being and our growth.

To my coaches, I have learned some of life’s most valuable lessons from you indirectly. And although you may not think so, I owe a great deal of where and who I am to you all.

I grew up starting Tee-Ball at the age of 3, started playing competitive basketball and softball in second grade, was a 5 sport athlete while I was high school, and I also played college softball. There are many teams I got to be a part of, and I can easily say, I am grateful that each team I played on included gals who were generally as competitive as I.

Early in my elementary years, I played sports because I enjoyed playing, and it was a reason to be with teammates and friends. “Everyone was doing it”. I actually came to enjoy building relationships with you. I enjoyed sharing part of your passion. But what I didn’t know when I started sports, was that I would come to appreciate the life lessons that came with playing for you.


I have learned how important it is to live a healthy lifestyle, and how your body needs nutrients and water to accomplish goals and compete. During middle and high school, I did not provide my body with the nutrients that I could have or should have provided my body with. I took advantage of my metabolism and the production of mac n’ cheese and pop tarts.

Story Time: During the summers, game days got to be extremely hot and long with batting practice starting around 1:30-2:00 PM, getting the field ready or traveling, warming up prior to the game, and actually playing the game around 6:30 PM. I wouldn’t eat anything after lunch, requiring my mother to purchase a hotdog bun or a snickers from the concession stand so I could gain fast energy to finish a game. For away games, I would down a Monster Energy drink or a half-gallon of apple juice to be able to discard any waste bogging me down.

If I were to go back, I would have definitely eaten better, and taken care of myself a little better prior to sporting events.

During practices, we would have mini competitions with our teammates. At the time, I didn’t like these because I knew that I had what it took to win or work towards eventually winning those competitions, but I felt bad for others who may not have won those competitions and didn’t have the raw talent or the confidence to work towards that goal. Fast forward to now, I understand that if you don’t have friendly competitions, it doesn’t push you or your teammates. You are only as good as your weakest link. It was never about who was the best, it was to encourage improvement and support throughout the team.

Survival of the fittest – one of the few lessons I remember from my class work, and it still, to this day, comes back to me.

Along with in-house individual competitions, we also had team competitions. Being a part of a team is so much more than a name and a number on a list of paper. Teamwork was one of the hardest, most rewarding lessons I have ever learned although it can backfire when working with those who don’t know what that word means.

As I said above, you are only as good as your weakest link. When everyone puts in the time, supports each other, and is selflessly working towards the same goal, it’s called teamwork. I learned to work with others. I learned to find my teammate’s strengths and weaknesses; part of being a teammate is to help your teammate improve their weaknesses and sharpen their strengths even if they don’t necessarily ask for your help.

Story Time: Each and every day at the end of basketball practice, we, individually, shot 10 free-throw shots calculating and recording the percentage of makes. Following that, we would start a drill in which each person on the team would line up on the baseline. Starting at one end, each person got two chances at free-throw shots. If you made the first, you were done and the next person stepped up to the line. If you missed, the whole team ran the length of the gym and back, and you shoot again. If you made it you were done, and if you missed again, well, the team ran again. I don’t know about you, but I didn’t really care to run at all, let alone after I had run and worked my butt off for the past two hours. This was a team building activity; we supported each other make or miss. Needless to say, we got really good at free-throws.

Between in-season and off-season practices, individual camps, team camps, and individual home workouts, I have learned the value of hard work. At a very young age, I learned that if I wanted something, anything at all, it wasn’t going to appear on its own. I would have to work towards small goals to  accomplish the master goal – one day, one step at a time. If I didn’t get my work done, it ultimately brought down my team, and I certainly didn’t want to be the one keeping our team from success. When I did accomplish my goals, big or small, it taught me to appreciate my abilities as well as self-respect and respect for others supporting me and those working toward their own goals.

If I was having trouble with achieving my goals, I wasn’t scared to tap resources from my coaches or ask them stay after practice to work on a skill. After all, that is what they are there for. Not only did I build relationships with my coaches, I trusted they knew what was best for me and my team. If I didn’t agree with my coach and their decisions, I may have confronted them for a reasoning, but I always respected the coaches that could give a reasonable explanation. If I wasn’t playing as much as I thought I should, I didn’t get my parents involved. I would sit down with coach and talk about my concerns. I worked harder to prove myself.

I spent a lot of time during the school year as well as the summer being involved in sports and speech. Sometimes, I would start my days with morning practice at 5:30 AM and not get home from a game until 10:30-11:00 PM. Although we had practice and game schedules, it didn’t take me long to learn time management skills and discipline. If we were late to practice, it was seen as disrespectful to the coach and your teammates resulting in some form of extra physical activity such as running to make up for each minute late.

If I had school work to complete, often times, I found anytime I could to complete it as I knew I wouldn’t get anything done when I got home late from a game. This doesn’t just relate to school work, but it has taught me not to procrastinate. If there is one thing I dislike, it is being late.

Story Time: When we had early morning practice for volleyball, my sister and I would leave our house a half hour early to drive 8 minutes to practice. We spent the extra time driving around listening to music or napping in the parking lot until practice, but we were never late.

You taught me self-pride, accountability, and to believe in myself. I let my coaches push me harder than I thought I could be pushed. I took responsibility when my coaches were disappointed in me, in my actions, in my errors, or progression with a skill. You have spoken gentle words, and I have heard you raise your voice in frustration, but I knew that it just meant you thought I could do better. That feeling alone encouraged me to strive to achieve those goals – small or big. I knew that if you believed in me, all I needed to do was believe in myself.

I learned that individuality is the best trait you can bring to the table. For a long time, I worked towards being like or as good as some of my peers, but in high school I realized, that I had my own role on the team and I needed to work hard to improve that role, not try to play someone else’s role. Thank you for teaching me that I am great the way I am, and each of us were needed to make the team whole.

I have learned so much from playing sports, and being a part of an organized team. It was very difficult for me to cease organized team sports after playing for 19 years.  I can honestly say, I am who I am today because of the lessons I have learned from you, my coaches, while playing sports.

I know I am not the only person who feels this way, and I know some of my peers came out with poor experiences with their coaches and sports, but I am forever grateful for my experiences and my coaches. You took a lot of your personal time to be with us in season as well as out – it doesn’t go unnoticed. I can only hope that my children someday will take away these life lessons from their activities.

Thank you forever,