Wondering On Wednesday

Image may contain: one or more people, text that says 'When you call us heroes, and then go to a BBQ. When you call us angels, and go to a packed church service. When you harold our sacrifice, then push to open everything too soon. Save your applause, because this is whatit feels like. CLAPI CLAPI আম 꿈'

I can’t even imagine being in the frontlines as a healthcare worker right now. This image speaks volumes. Every single one of us is responsible for our actions and the choices we are making during this pandemic. At this point it should be a no brainer to do the right thing and to do everything in our power to help slow the spread and follow the guidelines set forth for us. I truly believe these guidelines are in place to help us, not hurt us.

It is maddening to me when I see people still gathering, still traveling unnecessarily, and not masking up or being sanitary. I am especially frustrated with those that keep telling me that I shouldn’t live in fear. People wake up, we are in the midst of a pandemic. If you are NOT living in fear, it worries me and you are likely part of the problem. I’d rather be seen as living in fear by another then seen living and seen NOT following guidelines that have been set in place to protect myself, my family, those I love and even complete strangers.

It certainly isn’t fun to be apart from those you love. It gets mundane staying home night after night, day after day seeing the same people you live with, seeing the same scenery, and doing mostly the same things and it certainly doesn’t feel like we are living right now. However, it is our responsibility as human beings to do our part to slow the spread.

2020 has been a rough year for most of us. For some of us it has been rougher then others. Consider yourself one of the lucky ones if your life has not been personally affected by Covid or you or someone you know has not tested positive for Covid. Be especially grateful if you don’t personally know anyone who has died from Covid. I now know more people then I can count on my two hands who are sick with Covid. I know of three people now who have died from Covid. None of us are immune to this so please for the love of God stop living like this could never be knocking at your front door or the door of someone you love.

In case you are wondering, it’s getting harder for me to hold my tounge about how I am feeling about this. I would love to see my family in 2021. I would love to be able to plan game nights with my friends. I would like to be able to step out in the general population and not fear for my life or my husbands life or my two beautiful daughter’s lives. The quality time that has been lost with my loved ones I will never get back and either will you. It’s just disappointing to continue to see the lack of regard for others that so many have. Cast aside your feelings if you don’t agree, cast aside politics, or even your rights as a human being. I have the same rights as you and one of those is the right to one day safely see the people I love again and feel safe doing so. Unfortunately, until many others start being less selfish and doing what is right and following the simple guidelines set forth that are there for a reason I have a feeling it is going to be a long while before I see those I love…and maybe I never will again.

Aimless 20 Talk Tuesday

  1. He’s baaaaaacccccck. Lollipop, the elf that is. He left a note for the girls that said he missed them & is playing a little game of hide and seek. Etta found him in her backpack this morning trying to sneak off to school with her. I wonder what other shenanigans he will be up to this Christmas Season.
  2. Stepping in cat barf with your bare feet is not on the top of my list of enjoyable happenings this morning.
  3. Etta has a dentist appointment after school. It’s just a cleaning BUT I am trying to get her dad to take her. I took her last time. I hate going to the dentist, even if it’s my kids in the seat and I’m just there. The noises, the smells, all the tooth talk it sends my anxiety straight up to a 10. I always feel guilty NOT being the one to take the girls to appointments though. I feel like it’s my duty as Mom to be the one to take them.
  4. You guys! I did it! I finally finished The After Series by Anna Todd. I’m totally switching gears now and started reading, Meridith Masony’s book, “Ask me What’s for Dinner One More Time.” I’m only two days in and already over halfway done so I have a feeling it will be a quick read and I’ll be onto the next one which is a Christmas book that my friend borrowed me by John Grisham called, “Skipping Christmas”.
  5. My dad shot a nub buck on the last day of gun-deer season. I think he was a little disappointed because he thought it was a decnet sized doe. However once he walked up to it he saw the nubs. He still was able to use an antlerless tag on it but I know he probably wouldn’t have shot it if it were a nub because he likes to let those grow and spread their seeds. Anyway, I guess my parents are working on canning venison. I’ve never had canned venison EVER and honestly in all my years have never even heard of people doing this. I don’t know quite how I feel about it but my mom just sent a picture of it this morning and I seriously gagged. I mean, maybe it will taste good but I’m having a really hard time with the mind over matter thing right now.
  6. Etta and I watched the Holiday Disney Sing-A-Long special last night. It was the perfect way to end November and get into the Holiday Spirit. I can hardly believe today is December 1st.
  7. We will likely put carpeting all the bedrooms at the new house but do we want to skip putting carpeting in our living room? Our carpet that we currently have is so gross. Of course we’ve lived here over ten years and we’ve never gotten new carpet, it is all the original. However, with pets and kids it’s always dirty and I don’t even want to know the filth that is living in it. However, I’ve never not had carpet in my living room space so I don’t know what it would be like to NOT have it.
  8. Kynnslee has requested we make chocolate chip cookies together today, so we will do just that.
  9. This is your Tuesday reminder to stop what you are doing and drink a glass of water and no, sorry…coffee does not count!
  10. I’m looking to replace a pair of “boots” I have. Don’t laugh (but I really understand if you do) but I got these boots at Payless my senior year of high school. I remember that my older sister and I went to Eau Claire, WI to do some shopping and it was when the UGG boots were becoming a cool thing but I could not afford the actual name brand. I thought I was so cool that I found a pair at Payless Shoes (bahaha). I still have that pair of boots and they’ve seen better days. They don’t even have the souls on the inside bottom because I had to pull them out because of wear and tear. They area actually a size too big for my feet. I’ve been looking at getting a cute sneaker waterproof boot. Sorel makes a few cute ones but they are over $100. I don’t like to spend that much on my footwear (never have if you can’t tell from my payless purchase) but if my payless boots have lasted this long then I know Sorels would be worth spending the extra money. What kind of lighter boots that are not dressy but still semi warm and waterproof do you like to wear out for everyday wear this time of year. Bonus if they are comfortable enough to go hiking in.
  11. What could I do for a fun-flexible-casual-very part-time job? I’ll be losing my cash income after December 17th which means I need to either find a new family to work with or just find something new to make a little extra cash. I’m super bummed out about this loss, not just because of the money. The little boy I have been watching has become like our family and is one of Kynnslee’s first friends. She really enjoys weekly playdates with him and I know she is really going to miss the socialization. It breaks my heart.
  12. Today starts our 25 days of opening a winter theme/Christmas themed book and reading it together as a family. Each book is wrapped so it will be a surprise as to which one we read each day. Some of the books were mine from when I was a little girl which will make it even more special. I don’t know why, but I feel very excited about this. I think it will help us to have some family time and will bring about some great conversations together. I intend for this to be a distractions free time even if it takes less then 20 minutes each day.
  13. There was no apple juice at Costco last night. Like what? This may not be a huge deal to some but this is all my girls drink (heavily watered down of course). All hell will break loose if we run out.
  14. I’m putting my Christmas Cards in the mail today. I got one New Year’s card at the beginning of November and two Christmas Cards yesterday. I’m totally not the only one sending them out early this year!
  15. I have an under cabinet wine glass rack that I took down yesterday and packed away along with all the wine glasses it was holding. Don’t worry. I still have 4 wine glasses in one of my cupboards to use. My next goal is to go through all my kitchen cupboards and only have the bare minimum in each cupboard and pack away the rest of the things we don’t use. It’s these little things I’d like to start doing to prepare us for our move because it’s these little things that are going to take up a lot of time doing and I don’t want to be doing them last minute.
  16. Why oh why did they stop making the Nike Flex Running shoes that I love? I have three pairs all in different colors but I wear my black ones by far the most and the souls are almost worn all the way through. I have yet to find a tennis shoe that feels like these on my feet. What is your favorite running shoe?
  17. My daughter just informed me she wants a pair of wireless headphones. I wish she would have told me this a little bit sooner because I am done Christmas shopping for her. They are on sale right now for $21 though and I’m so tempted to just get them for her anyways. However, I don’t’ know if it is worth getting the wrath from my husband!
  18. Did I mention I want a pair of wireless headphones for myself? I have the ear buds but I also want headphones.
  19. We went and tested out some mattresses last Friday night. My husband really wanted to test the purple mattress. I hope he is over it because it was NOT comfortable at all. It felt like I was laying on an air mattress. I found one that I liked but he said he wants to test out some more mattresses at another store. I think we are getting a little closer to buying a king size bed. GAWD I HOPE SO!
  20. I hope you find something in this day that brings you JOY!

Mombie Mondays

Sending your littles back to school after a break can be hard. In this case, it was a five day break for my 3K’er and a 4 day break for my 3rd grader. Although it was a short break, transitioning back into the daily grind isn’t always smooth sailing. It can be hard on us Mombies and it can be hard on our littles too.

Thankfully my oldest daughter, Etta, loves school! Heading back to school was not an issue for her. She couldn’t get back to school and her friends fast enough. It didn’t help that over break we didn’t see any family or any friends (thanks pandemic…not!) and she was missing seeing everyone. At drop off this morning, she did tell me she was really going to miss me BUT there were no tears shed. I certainly did not have to push her out of the car at drop off. Whew!

One off to school…one more to go!

Then there is my newly 4 year old. Kynnslee is always so hesitant about school. She never wants to go. It has always been a struggle to get her out the door, then into the car and into the school. She cries before she is at school, all the way to school and while at school as she is also saying she will miss me. As any Mama does, I try to reassure her that “moms always come back” to which she replies, “but you will take too long to come back.” Monday’s and Wednesdays always seem to be a struggle at our house for the simple reason she puts up a huge stink about going to preschool. My heart feels like it breaks into a thousand pieces when I drive off and leave her somewhere she claims she doesn’t want to be and usually this Mombie is crying all the way home and looking at the clock the entire two and a half hours she is gone because it’s true, the time isn’t moving fast enough.

Over break, I saw something sweet that another Mombie in my shoes did. I by no means claim coming up with this wonderful idea on my own, but I wanted to share it with all of you in case you didn’t see it and are also walking in my shoes. This morning, I sat with Kynnslee and drew a heart on her hand and drew a heart on my hand. To put it in simple terms she easily would understand, I told her that a heart means love and that I love her very much and I know that she loves me very much. I told her that she gets to take this heart with her to school and Mama gets to go back home with her heart. When we are feeling sad or we are missing each other when we are apart we can push the heart button on our hand and feel each other’s love or we can simply look down at the heart on our hands and remember how much we love each other.

Kynnslee went along with the idea and seemed very excited about this heart. We pushed it a couple times at home to make sure it worked. You betcha, this Mama exaggerated the hell out of the love I was being sent when she pushed that button. Then, I pushed mine and asked her if she felt my love being sent to her and she said, “I feel Mama’s love and I love you.” We were able to get her shoes on, coat on, and into the car with no issues this morning. She was a chatter box the entire way to school and didn’t shed a single tear!

When we got to the drop off door it was one of the first mornings I did not have to go into the building with her and have her teacher pry her off of me while she’s screaming “Mama don’t go.”! She walked in and I watched through the glass door as she took her jacket off and hung her backpack on her cubby hook. Before going into the classroom, I saw her look down at her heart and push the heart button. Be still my heart! I cried all the way home. However, my tears were not the tears that I normally cry. It was all because of the love I felt when she pushed that heart button, which by the way really does work! My heart this morning is just so full of joy and love for the little beings who calls me Mama!

Thankful Thursday

Six years ago on this day we found the buck I had shot the night before. I knew when I had taken a shot I had hit the buck but the little bit of blood and they yellow stains in the snow, in it’s trail, my dad had thought looked more like a gut shot. We had tried to track it some but were coming up short. My dad said that we were better off getting some sleep and trying to track more in the morning because if it were a gut shot it would likely take a while for the buck to die anyways. I remember feeling a bit defeated and not wanting to give up. As a hunter, I felt awful for shooting an animal and possibly wounding it. I knew in my heart I needed to find this deer and finish him off it need be. I took my dads advice though and we went home. I didn’t get much sleep that night because I was thinking of all the “what if’s” and I was eager to just get back up in the morning to go and look for this buck again. I honestly didn’t think we would find it, but had hope that just maybe we would. I had been waiting for this moment to share with my dad for such a long time and this time just felt like it could be it.

Needless to say, it was a short night of sleep but I felt awake running off adrenaline from the night before. I can’t remember every exact detail but we ended up replaying the night’s events and following from where I thought I shot the buck to where we saw some blood and the yellow coloration in the snow. Thankfully my dad has great intuition and he took the lead tracking with us following behind for extra eyes. My dad ended up finding my buck first. I will never forget the look on his face and the emotions that followed after it. It was just one of the most memorable hunting experiences I have ever had.

Getting a closer look at my buck (my first deer ever shot) we realized that the coyotes had gotten to my deer first and ate the better half of it. It was quite a graphic sight and the smells coming from that deer were even worst. This was surely one for the books and I will never forget my first experience getting my first deer or sharing that special moment with my Dad and husband. It also happened to be the year after my Uncle Tom had passed away and I had never shot a deer in all the years I had hunted with him so I think all of our emotions were on high and I always think He worked his magic up in heaven to help me get a deer that year.

It’s these memories I’m just so grateful for and realize how much they truly mean now. Missing hunting this year makes me even more thankful that I forever will have those memories with my dad. I’m missing him a lot this season (and my entire family). Having these memories to hold near and share make me smile thinking about them today.

I’ve been holding back tears all morning because this Thanksgiving just doesn’t feel quit the same. There will be far too many empty chairs at our table while we’re eating our delicious meal, the house will be much quieter without cousins playing and giggling together, and no men snoring on the couch or yelling over a football game. However, I’m thinking about past memories with a thankful, grateful, and blessed heart. I’m also thinking of all that I have and all that there is to be truly thankful for this year and today despite the challenges of this Pandemic and being apart from those I love most. I’m happy to hold so many wonderful memories in my heart and I’m holding those memories very near today while I enjoy my own family creating our own Thanksgiving memories today.

Happy Thanksgiving! May your hearts be full with both thanks & giving!

-Nichole

Wondering On Wednesday

After not working out the last nine days, I got back on my treadmill and ran two and a half miles, did a core work out and did arm strengthening this morning. It helped that the girls do not have school this morning and we were in no rush this morning to be anywhere. I’m going to be raw and real here for a second though and be honest with you all. The last nine days of no work outs gave me lots of guilt each and every single day. I felt like crap NOT working out because deep down I know that even on those days I don’t want to work out, working out ALWAYS makes me feel better and I never regret starting, even when it’s hard.

However, I’ve really been struggling mentally, emotionally and physically. The one thing I do for myself to make myself feel better I had zero energy for, zero motivation for, and quite honestly in those days gave zero F’s about. I know this is not like me and I was even worried about myself. What the heck is going on with me? I’m not 100% certain although I can throw these few excuses down-I have been dealing with chronic sinus infections and was hit by another one yet again and it has taken it’s toll on me. The antibiotic I got to help it did not help and and I’m still dealing with it. Then, I got my period which is always a huge trigger for me each and every month because it is a reminder of what can’t be. Not only this but I think I’ve been getting what I think are nasty hormonal headaches. These headaches knock me out and make me feel awful. If I’m even more transparent with you all I’ve also been dealing with bouts of some depression that I just can’t shake.

All this has just been too much so about the only thing I’ve been able to motivate myself to do has been getting my 11,000 steps in, which is my daily stop goal. This I’ve been conscious of making sure I do, but anything extra or anything else I just can’t. Not only this but I also know at times it’s important to just listen to your body and my body was telling me I needed to rest and do other things to feed my soul in order for me to get out from under this dark cloud over my shoulders and in order to just keep on keeping on.

I’m realizing again and again that my best is going to look different each and every single day. My best is going to look different they your best and this is why comparison is the thief of joy. We’ve been living through some pretty tough times in general and this year has been nothing short of stressful, disappointing, sad and hard. If your best looks like just getting up and getting out of bed and making it from point A to B then be proud. If your best looks like cooking a meal from scratch for your family then be proud, if your best looks like getting dressed and going to work and giving it your all be proud. Whatever it is that you did today (or didn’t do) I really believe we are all just doing the best we can these days. Some days it looks like more and some days it’s less. It’s okay!

Learning to give yourself Grace in these harder days is everything. Resting instead of working out may just be exactly what you need in that moment. So, today I am proud that I didn’t give up. I got up and brushed myself off and am trying again. I’m showing up. Today is a new day and I’m just going to do the best I can.

Aimless 20 Talk Tuesday

  1. Wow. Wow. Wow!!!! Last nights DWTS was epic! I can’t not get enough of Derek Hough. His performances are always just flawlessly amazing. I’m still kicking myself for not getting tickets to see him at the PAC in Appleton when he was on tour performing. If he ever is again, I’m getting tickets and taking Etta. She would be in awe seeing him dance in person. ANYWAYS…I have to admit as much as I LOVE, love, LOVE KB I was a little shocked that Nev didn’t win. Every time he danced, it was just like his performances were a treat that kept getting better and better. I loved watching him and Jenna dance together. They had such an amazing partnership and danced beautifully together. However, Kaitlyn worked so incredibly hard each week and had major improvement but her attitude was always a 10. I’ve been following her journey since she was on the Bachelorette and it was so amazing to see her dream unfold and for her to make it all the way to the top. Congrats! It was an amazing DWTS season.
  2. We did a thing this weekend. We caved and put our Christmas tree up already. We have never put our tree up this early. It always goes up after we get back from hunting over that first weekend we are back home which is usually the beginning of December. However, I think we all needed something to do that lifted our spirits and gave us something to be excited about…so our tree is up and we have been enjoying it!
  3. Our furnace kept me awake last night. It was making a strange noise. Hopefully it isn’t breaking because we just had it fixed earlier this year…but it is still 2020 so I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s breaking again. Hopefully my hubster can take a look at it and see if he can figure out why it’s making the noise.
  4. We have a meeting with our builder on Wednesday to talk finishes. This will help us start thinking about what we need to decide on and also start creating a budget for finishes. We made some small tweaks to the basement layout and sent that back off to the drafter yesterday.
  5. I finally watched the movie, “After We Collided”. Like most books turned to movies it was not as good as the book but it was still fun to watch. I’m still working on finishing the last book in the series…so, so, so close to being done. I know I’ve been saying this a lot so don’t judge, these books are thick y ‘all!
  6. We are not doing Thanksgiving with any of our extended family on Thursday, well because…Covid. However, we still wanted to make a special meal to celebrate Thanksgiving. Any guesses what is on our menu?
  7. We took a lovely hike on Sunday at High Cliff State Park. It was truly the best medicine for us all. Nature & fresh air always does the trick!
  8. My Sister turns 40 on Saturday…this just seems crazy to me.
  9. 8 more days and I can send out our Christmas cards!
  10. I’ve been on the struggle bus the last couple weeks. However, I’ve also had my period the last 4 days and I’ve really been noticing a pattern around this time of depression and really horrible headaches. Both always seem to come strong around my period and I’m wondering if it has something to do with my hormones. Anyone else deal with depression and headaches around that time of the month? This is new for me so I’m not quite sure what the heck is going on.
  11. Today is the last day of school for the week and both girls won’t return until Monday the 30th. I’m struggling with thinking of finding things to keep the girls busy and making their time off “fun”. I feel so incredibly bad that their time with their grandparents and cousins is being stolen from them because honestly as a child this time is a magical time and it’s the best time. My heart is broken for them. Etta received a letter in the mail from her cousin yesterday and we all just cried after reading it because you can just feel how much they all miss each other.
  12. I did jump on board and find all of our Christmas and Winter books and I wrapped them each individually. For each day of December up until Christmas the girls will unwrap a book and we will read together as a family and then talk about it afterwards. I’m hoping this sparks joy and family conversation and quite possibly Zach and I sharing our Christmas/winter childhood memories with the girls. Then on Christmas I wrapped two books that are new books to the girls that they can add to their at-home library!
  13. Since Kynnslee turned 4 it’s like something switched in her and we are dealing with a whole new level of sass and attitude. I swear it’s going to be the death of me. Send help!
  14. I’m so excited. My Shutterfly book came in the mail yesterday. I’m still so behind on pictures but it felt good to make a book with some of them. It makes me so happy looking through it and seeing all the memories made.
  15. This Mama needs some alone time….a lot of alone time (insert whining and 4 year old demands in the background).
  16. We officially ditched the dog kennel in our kitchen. We trust Haddie enough now to roam free 24/7. Except now she comes to our bed to snuggle at night and I just don’t know if that is going to work for me, especially since we still have yet to get a king sized bed. it’s like having 3 grown adults crunched up together in a queen sized bed every night. I’m not even joking. For the record, her dog bed is on the floor in our bedroom and I think our cat uses it more then the dog does.
  17. Here is your Tuesday reminder to stop what you are doing and drink water.
  18. I flipped on the TV late afternoon yesterday which is something I rarely do and saw the Drew Barrymore has her own talk show now. I swear sometimes I feel like I live under a rug.
  19. I still can’t believe I would normally be hunting right now and instead I’m at home. Feeling sad, but also so grateful that other years have allowed our hunting traditions. Hoping and praying next year is better.
  20. If you still believe that Covid isn’t really or it is a hoax then you continue to be a part of a problem. Also, please reconsider gathering with others outside your household on Thursday for Thanksgiving. Please be part of the solution, not the problem. The rest of us would be so grateful for your cooperation and doing your part in trying to slow the spread.