Wake Up Wednesday: 8.5

Good morning world. It’s a new day, a new week, and I hope everyone’s week is off to a good start.

School has started and football season is T-4 sleeps away until my Cyclones open their season. College football has a special place in my heart, but it also is played during my favorite time of the year.

I’m up early and on the run this morning so …… Grab your hot coffee drink and let’s make this day better.


Song of the Week:

Keeping Score

Dan + Shay Feat. Kelly Clarkson

What TV show do you always watch re-runs of?:

I have a few TV shows that fall under this question.

-Spongebob

-How I Met Your Mother

-The Office

-That 70’s Show

All of these are great shows, and I just cannot get enough. I like each one for similar but different reasons, but mainly because of the humor.

When you make a decision, do you stick to it or go back and forth?:

I generally make a lot of my decisions on a coin, even the simplest of decisions such as whether to decide on a meal when we go out to eat. It’s pretty rare, I don’t use a coin to make decisions, but I always stick with them. Always.

Bible Verse of the Week:

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:18

What are your favorite pizza toppings?:

Pepperoni and Green Olives – This is my ultimate favorite pizza. I also enjoy green pepper as well.

Quote of the Week:

If you have a family that loves you, a few good friends, food on the table and a roof over your head, you are richer than you think.

-Unknown

What makes you tear up every time you think about it?:

Last Calls.

When a service man or woman passes away and the dispatchers end their call (whether I know them or not) I tear up. Even just the thought of it can make me emotional.

Some individuals put forth so much of themselves to better our communities and country; it is heartbreaking when their call is ended, especially if it’s a young life taken too soon.


That is all for today. I hope you enjoy your last Wednesday of August. Labor day weekend is among us – the unofficial end of summer. Do something fun with your weekend!

Han

Wake Up Wednesday: 8.4

Good morning to everyone.

I said a quick prayer this morning as I woke up thanking God for opening my eyes this morning, thanking Him for all of His works even if we don’t understand them at the time, and also praying for love amongst our world. My home state [Iowa] has been shook and even broken in the last couple weeks with incriminating events, and last night, I decided to find the good and pray. Because there is power in prayer.

Grab your coffee, and let’s get this day off to a better start then yesterday. It is a new day.


Song of the Week: 

Life is Worth Living

Justin Bieber

This is not a typical Bieber song. Take a listen.

What’s on your mind right now?:

In spite of the negative, heart wrenching events that have taken place in the last year, last months, the last couple weeks, and even in the last day, I have decided to take each day by the reigns and live it knowing God has a plan bigger than any single one of us – bigger than me. I will not live my life in fear or refrain from exploring our world’s beauty, or adding to my life experiences. I will raise my children in this cruel world and pray they will open their eyes to the Lord. I trust that He is in control and His plan is the best plan.

When we allow ourselves to live in fear, the devil has won. You have not only lost a battle, you have lost yourself as a person. Faith is what sets us free from the negativity. There is so much to be thankful for and beauty in this world that hasn’t even been experienced,

Bible Verse of the Week:

I thought this bible verse was fitting today, as many people in our state, country, and world have reasons to give up the faith, to break down, and even shut down. But just remember, even when you have reached rock bottom and you feel alone, God is still there by your side and ready to stand with you or hell, maybe even pick you up. Again, I believe we experience stages where we think we have reached rock bottom to realize that in the end, it’s just you and God.

Quote of the Week:

Fear can keep us up all night long, but faith makes one fine pillow.

-unknown

This quote is extremely fitting for anyone who is struggling with the fear of what our world is coming to.

What is your favorite Netflix show right now?:

Riverdale

Although it is NOT my type of show, I got sucked in by the suspense. It started out as something I would typically watch, but once I got to the end of season 1 and into season 2, it got intense. The suspense and cliff hangers were enough to lure me in even more. This show reminds me of the game Clue, where everyone is trying to find out who did it, where, when, and why. This is not something I’d usually watch, and other than being scared in my shorts most of the time (because quite frankly, I cannot watch anything remotely scary), I thought it was a good show. I will just have to wait for the next season.

What is one thing you need to work on?:

I need to work on my patience. I get something in my head and I want to do it or want it done now. If I’m hungry, I want food 20 minutes ago. Although I’d like to think I try to work on this, I have a feeling my patience will be tested beyond compare and a lesson may begin to come around once this baby makes its appearance. So until then, I will enjoy my impatient self.

What is one thing you dream of doing?:

I’d love to road trip the northeast/west regions of our country. Maybe not at the same time, but in my lifetime for sure. I’m intrigued by the mountains, parks, and wildlife (although I don’t feel the need to sleep outside with them). There is so much beauty to see in this country.

I’m not saying I don’t want to see the south, but usually when we travel, it’s during the cold months and we have seen much more of the south than we have the north.


That is all I have for today. I apologize for the somber post this morning, but I think we have a lot of hurting people. Be kind today and everyday.

Hannah

Wake Up Wednesday: 8.3

Good morning and welcome to the start of the latter half of August! If you haven’t gotten in some vacation time or completed a few items on your summer bucket list, now is the time to really start doing those things! Summer will fade to fall here before we know it.

If summer was fading to any other season, I wouldn’t be excited at all that my summer was gone, but the fact that fall is the following season lifts my mood even more. There is something about harvest season – the smell, the crisp air, the color changes in the scenery all around – it is definitely a favorite time of year for me.

Grab that caffeine drink and let’s get this morning started.


In light of this week being my husband and I’s first anniversary, I’d like to maybe share this post as a theme behind that event. They say the first year is the hardest; well this has been a very trying year, but I’m excited to see where the next one takes us.

Song of the Week:

Best Day of My Life

George Strait

This song brings me back to that day. All I can do is smile because it all felt like a dream; it went so fast! But we had an unbelievable amount of family and friends there to support us, and we couldn’t have asked for a better day.

Who never forgets a birthday or anniversary?:

Eric – Definitely Me

Hannah – Definitely Eric, but we will see this weekend. 

Eric has an amazing memory to the point where it’s almost a fault. He could tell you when we went on our first date, where, what we ate, and what movie we went to. I, honestly, had no idea until he told me – mind you it was over 7 years ago.

Quote of the Day:

You are my today and all of my tomorrows.

-Leo Christopher

I’m pretty sure I have used this quote before, but it is on point for this week. It is my reminder that we need to take each day at a time. Not all of our days together are going to the best of the best, but as long as we work through it together, today is all we have.

Who feeds the dog?:

Eric – Me

Hannah – Eric majority of the time. 

He is the last out of the house, therefore, he can feed the dog. After supper, Eric likes to feed Soph the leftovers because he is convinced, if he gives her the good food, she will like him more. Ha, that dog and I have a bond that cannot be broken.

Bible Verse of the Week:

Above all else, love each other deeply. 

1 Peter 4:8

Who talks on the phone most?:

Eric – Do I even have to answer this?

Hannah – Ha

This is a no brainer. I talk on the phone more between the both of us; I do not like texting especially if I have a quick question. I will just call someone quick.

Who is the better cook?:

Eric- Depends

Hannah – What are we making?

This question is so hard to answer because we both cook meals. The rule of the house is, whoever is home first generally is in charge of supper unless it is planting or harvest season. Eric hasn’t had as much experience in the kitchen as I have, but he can make a mean meal.

One thing I appreciate about his upbringing, is that his mother generally had fruits and vegetables incorporated with their meals, so Eric prefers to have a balanced meal. (Every now and then pizza is on the menu or even popcorn on a Sunday, but usually we have a meat and vegetable or fruit and another side.) We enjoy sitting at our table and having a meal together.


That is all for today. I hope you enjoy the rest of your week. Take that time and do something with your summer if you haven’t already!

Han

A Missing Piece to My Puzzle

My phone buzzes a few minutes after 6:00 AM on Friday morning. It reads, “Are you up?” (from Momma). To be honest, I wasn’t up. My alarm hadn’t even gone off and my eyes were barely open when I read the text, but I knew she would have waited to text or call me until a little later in the morning had it not been somewhat important.

The next thing I know she’s calling me explaining the details of the night spent in the hospital and the current diagnosis, along with plans of hospice in the very near future with a consensus of a 24-48 hour range until death.

[The man has had more than his fair share of 9 lives; he was a tough cookie, but he’d been through a lot. Let me just say that again, he made it through a lot. So when a routine diagnosis was given, my immediate thought was, “he will pull through just like every other time”, that is, until I heard the word hospice come out of her (Momma’s) mouth. ]

When I walked into that ICU hospital room, I had a feeling wash over me that was completely different from any other time I’d visited him in the hospital. I could immediately feel God preparing me for a hardship. I could feel a sense of peace hit me, and I knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but I knew the outcome this time.

Sitting in the hospital room with family at his side, we all cracked the good jokes he used to ramble off, and laugh and cry about stories each of us had with him. (The nurses probably thought we were the most crude family, laughing as we all started going through our anticipated grief stages, but it was our coping mechanism, our way of bonding, and our way of celebrating the life he had lived.)

16 hours under hospice care, and he slipped away quietly through the night when everyone was sleeping – just as he would have wanted it.


This last month, we lost part of the trunk to our family tree – a piece to our puzzle; I lost my grandfather. And although some people would maybe think, “well, he’s just your grandfather; it’s not like you lost your dad or your mom”, I have to think I lost a lot more than just my grandfather.

I have known this day would come eventually; I just didn’t know when. I am a firm believer that God places obstacles or hardships in our path to test us or prepare us for another along the way. I have been looking for signs or situations the past few years that might prepare me for losing a loved one. I just haven’t been able to wrap my head around it, or even begin to mentally prepare myself for what it might be like. Well, the time had come, and I still wasn’t prepared.

As a funeral director, I have learned a lot about living your life, checking things off your bucket list, and creating life-long memories. I have also learned how to be strong for and help families during a time of loss, but one thing I haven’t learned was how to help myself during a time of loss.

I didn’t know where or how to begin. All I could think about was the fact that the day I had been thinking about for the longest time had actually come. I thought about what life would be like moving on without him – no more visits to the farm to have a beer with my old man, no more visits to the nursing home where he’d tell me about his endless trips he’d been on that week, and no more watching westerns and TV Land with him. I will never eat another peanut butter cookie or chew a piece of Juicy Fruit gum without thinking of him. But most of all, I’ll never forget the endless amounts of quotes and life lessons, big or small, that I have gathered from that man along my way.

As I sit here and ponder what my life would be like growing up without my family, particularly my grandparents, I can’t help but think I would have been fine, yes, but I wouldn’t have near the appreciation, loyalty, and morality I have now.

I have closer relationships with my grandparents and their siblings than some people have with their own parents or siblings. I am just as close with my great aunts and uncles as most of my more immediate family members. I enjoy sharing a relationship with them, and I know, they’d do just about anything for me if I needed. But more than that, they are the history of our family; their stories tell it all.

At the age of 25, I lost my first grandparent; and other than losing my 99 1/2 year old great-grandmother last fall, I haven’t experienced death in my family. I’m truly blessed that I have had the ability to grow up and build such close relationships with each of my grandparents.

So I can only pray that my children will, too, have the opportunity to grow up with their grandparents, and great aunts and uncles. I hope they share as special of a connection with them as I have with mine. They truly have helped mold me into who I am, and they are a constant reminder of where I come from. I couldn’t be more appreciative of the love and bond in our families.

So rest high grandpa, “See ya in the funnies.”

XOXO

 

Wake Up Wednesday: 8.2

Good morning to you all. Tis the Iowa State Fair season; so many things to do, entertainment to see, and of course food to eat! If you have never been to the Iowa State Fair, please do yourself a favor and go and enjoy it for at least a day or two.

I could use coffee by the gallons lately. So drink yours and have another for me.


Song of the Week:

If I know Me

Morgan Wallen

Morgan is extremely underrated if you ask me. There are some great songs that come from this man. This particular song is a little catchy, but I encourage you to just put his album on YouTube and listen to it while you’re cleaning, working, or just hanging out.

What is the best museum you have ever been to?:

When I was in middle school, we took a trip to Washington D.C. One of the places we visited was the Holocaust Museum. If there was ever a place that single-handedly impacted me permanently, it would be there. The stories, the memorabilia, and photos are enough to make you cry, but the shoes and the unique smell of the museum are both things I will NEVER forget.

It put a lot into perspective, but my only complaint is that I wish we would have had more time. If you go to the museum, allot yourself plenty of time. It is a lot to take in, and I can only imagine how much more it would affect me if I went back as an adult versus a thirteen year old.

Bible Verse of the Week:

Do you have a recurring New Year’s Resolution?:

Each year I make a list of resolutions, and each year, I always keep one the same.

Donate to at least 4 organizations, charities, events, or causes each year.

I try to choose to donate towards things I am passionate about or to people I support. I try to change it up, but there are a couple I automatically donate to.

If you need a new resolution idea for the upcoming year, this one is a silently rewarding. It feels good to give especially to a good cause. Add it to your list for one year and see how it goes. If you don’t think you can donate four times in a year, decrease it to two or three. But I promise you won’t regret helping others in need.

Quote of the Week:

“Do what you have to do until you can do what you want to do.”

Oprah Winfrey

What do you do when you get really angry?:

Cry.

If I am crying, it is rarely because I am happy, sad, or injured; I cry when I am angry. If I’m crying, it’s pretty serious issue to me.

If you could learn a trade, what would it be?:

I have always been intrigued with welding.

If I went back to school, I’d go into a welding program. I would like to be able to use this as a side talent; maybe I could benefit from knowing this skill at some point even if I didn’t use the skills for a career.


Well that’s all for today. I hope everyone has a great day and week. The sun is shining; look up and smile if that’s the only positive thing you get to do today.

 

XO

Han

Wake Up Wednesday: 8.1

Good morning! Tis a new month – the last of the summer months. It’s hard to believe how fast this year is passing. In 30 days, everything will turn to pumpkin spice.

August means Iowa State Fair time, and they have some great entertainment this year. It’s also a great place for food, and we all know how much I love food.

Coffee today and everyday; let’s do this!


Song of the Week:

Just Lose It

Eminem

I’m just throwing it back a little. Gotta love me a little rap here and there. It’s probably not anything to be proud of knowing the words to this rap song, but it is pretty satisfying to know that after all these years, I can still rap this song.

Do you prefer Wal-Mart or Target?:

I am a lover of all things Target. I could spend hours in Target, and of course, I would walk out with a million unnecessary purchases. I like the Target brand as well. I feel they have more quality items.

I can barely walk into Wal-Mart without being instantly annoyed, but there are some things I like to get from Wal-Mart. I just save them all up to get them at once.

Bible Verse of the Week:

In the Bible it says numerous times that we can achieve anything as long as we believe. The power of hard work and prayer does pay off – trust the Big Guy Upstairs.

When do you function at your best?:

I tend to do my best with focus or any task during the morning – particularly 8:00 – 11:00 am. I’d rather work earlier in the morning and go home early afternoon. If I worked a shift job, my ideal shift would be 6:30 am – 2:30 pm. 3:00 – 5:00 pm is my least productive time of day, easily.

—–What are your most productive times of the day?

Quote of the Week:

This couldn’t be more true. If you organize, everything has a place. This goes for cleaning, time management, presentations etc. Organization is key. I am rather organized, but sometimes even though items have a spot to go in my house doesn’t always mean they get there.

Describe your “poker face”:

Non-existent. I have no such face; you can read me like a book.

What is one thing you wish you had the money to pay for?:

I wish I could have a personal chef. I’d like to wake up to breakfast waiting for me and my lunch packed. At the very least, I wish I could afford to pay someone to meal prep for me during the week. I love not having to worry about making dinner or supper, but I hate the time, effort, and weekly grocery shopping it takes to meal prep.


That’s all for this week. Enjoy your week, and don’t forget to do something for yourself this week!

XO

Han