Let’s Go Outside Shall We

My Mothers Day weekend starts today. What about yours?

I plan to spend mine with my husband, son, and some friends in the best place ever….outside!!!

I can’t wait to share the outcome with you next week but until then….

Happy Weekend Everyone!!!!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there also.

Image result for camping quotes

 

Recent Thoughts, Recent Eats, Recent Randomness

Where should I begin…..

Thoughts, ideas, inspirations, dreams….do you all have them rolling around in your brain like I do? Sometimes they drive me a bit crazy but I often wonder if they aren’t meant to do that. Some of the things rolling around in my head range from where to camp this coming summer,

IMG_3968

to what trails I want to hike this year,

IMG_4994

to what state do I want to toss at my family and see if they are on board to go visit.

IMG_5679

I would love to plan a girls weekend where all my girl friends escape the role of wife and mother and just be us for a few hours. No worries where this child is or that child is, what we will be preparing for dinner, how high the dirty dishes are stacking up or how much laundry I need to eventually make time to get done.

IMG_5328

IMG_1846

I am not a big shopper but I want to plan a Trader Joe’s trip(2 hours from us is the nearest) and also want to make a trip to the next REI garage sale day for members(again, another 2 hours from us).

IMG_4326

I have a million recipes I want to try in my new dutch oven. However, I have been using it quite a bit with old recipes and so far I am thrilled…it is fabulous. Big huge thank you to one of my daycare families for this wonderful gift.

IMG_6538

I also have a list of places to research for possible destinations to visit and I am really feeling the need for elevation…..a long trail that’s leads up where no one else is typically found when you finally reach the top. In other words, a little peace and quiet to gather all these thoughts and put them in order of importance.

So let’s move onto an easier topic….recent eats. This last week it’s been all about cleaning up the frig and open food in the pantry. I hate leaving home and having to throw out food. So it’s been a bit of random meals but still good meals per say.I have been really enjoying spicy black bean salads for my lunches. I am not a big side salad person but give me a meal salad and I am all in.

IMG_6594

With winter chill in my bones I have been really enjoying oatmeal for lunch also. Oatmeal is not a family favorite so when I get the chance to make it for just me I do.

IMG_5522

We had one bottle of Trader Joe’s curry sauce left and it was time to enjoy it since I had a few chicken breast we needed to eat up. My son and I were in heaven…..hubby…not so much. He had italian chicken breast instead. He is not a fan of curry in anything…party pooper.

IMG_6592

Let’s see, workouts have been going great. I have been concentrating on weekends at the gym and maybe one day during the week since right now it is so crowded it’s more stressful to go that not to go. Weekends are busy but not nearly what Monday thru Friday are at the moment. I have not been outside to exercise in quite sometime….and even though I miss fresh air, I have no urge what so ever to go outside to “play”! Too much snow for this desert loving girl!

I know my husband is waiting patiently to go ice fishing for the first time this winter which really causes me anxiety. Although, this year it seems he is going with someone new and it could prove to be very interesting to hear about when they get home. We shall see….

I am trying to figure out when and how I plan to surprise my boys with something they purchased me for Christmas and of course, I want them to share in the fun of it also. They thought it would be a great gag gift to buy me a brick of ration bars. Why…..who knows??? All I can tell you is, when they least expect good ole mom to have snacks in the snack bag while 10 miles back in the middle of nowhere….this is all I am going to produce and they are going to share in the fun of trying it if they are hungry enough. Fun will be had by all of us;-)

IMG_6526

For now I will leave you with all this. You may not feel better but I feel a bit lighter.

If you feel the need to get something off your mind…feel free in the comment section….I will listen.

 

Merry Christmas From Our Family To Yours

As we all approach the Christmas weekend I thought I would take a few seconds of precious time and wish you all a very Merry Christmas.

momornamentlow-2

I hope you all enjoy your family and friends as we will be busy enjoying all of ours here during the next two weeks. I will return with a look back at 2016 in the new year.

Until then……Merry Christmas!

IMG_6440

 

Cathedral Rock Trail- Sedona, Arizona

This was the first hike on our agenda during our first visit to the Sedona, Arizona area. I had been in contact with someone from this area a few times by email and she simply stated, “it’s a right of passage” to the area and you must give this trail a try. Say no more, I told my husband and son this would be our first hike of the visit and they were all in.

We researched this trail in detail before leaving and found that it was short, 1.5 miles round trip to be exact. It was also rated as HARD in many resources that we read. And after watching two videos taken while climbing this rock from fellow hikers, I knew it would be a challenge but I had my heart set on making it to the top of this rock.

IMG_5675

We arrived in the early morning just as the sun was rising over the mountains. We were told parking was an issue at this particular trailhead and when we returned to the vehicle, the lot was full.

IMG_5689

Note: you will need a red rock pass to park at this trailhead.

IMG_5603

As we prepared to conquer this hike, my boys both stood in awe at this magnificent sight.

IMG_5677

So with camera in hand, bladders emptied, and our packs loaded and ready we headed up this rock.

IMG_5684

IMG_5679

We knew exactly where the technical part of this hike would be when we reached it. There is a crevice that needs to be scrambled up and eventually down during this short hike that had my stomach in knots.

IMG_5687

When we reached this crevice, we stopped, packed up our cameras to have both hands free, and I secretly said a prayer. It’s one thing to do these types of hikes on my own, it’s a whole other thing to know my husband and son are right behind me and can fall at any moment. However, it’s the life we live and we love it so we continued after a quick family picture.

IMG_5698

Eventually we reached the top and it was worth every grey hair I gained making it through this crevice. It was amazing. I was so relieved, we made it, worked together as a family, and succeeded.

IMG_5702

IMG_5690

IMG_5701

Mom Cathedral End low logo-1

We spent about a half hour on the top, taking pictures, resting and just enjoying the view. I can see why I was told it was a right of passage to accomplish this hike. The feeling we felt when reaching the top was indescribable.

However, the thought of going back down is what really had me stressed. Although, I am happy to say, it was much easier than I had imagined to make our way back down the same way we came up. The only difference was we were on our rears instead of our knees. Here is a bit of what down looked like.

IMG_5718

IMG_5721

IMG_5723

It took us a total of about 2.5 hrs. to complete this hike with about a half hour of this on the top. People we ran into were respectful of sharing the crevice and not rushing anyone on the way up or down. This may seem like a short hike in distance but you will still need plenty of water and when the sun rises above the mountain the temperature rises quickly.

In my opinion hard was an accurate rating but completely worth it!

IMG_5678

 

Most Memorable Moments Of Our Minnesota North Shore Vacation

It’s not often we get to spend time as a family anymore with our son being an adult, working two jobs and usually going separate ways. However, when we do, we waste no time making memories that will surely last a lifetime.

dad is never far behind when capturing that picture from the cliff’s edge

IMG_4927

IMG_4801

experimenting with new campfire treats IMG_4976

IMG_4978

very sketchy bridge to cross

IMG_4875

IMG_4876

IMG_4885

family pictures just as I prefer them….dirty, hot and sweaty

IMG_4766

IMG_4915

IMG_4899

family picnics

IMG_4814

breath taking pictures of my husband who works so hard to make my dreams come true

IMG_4790

 feeding our meal time visitor out of our handsIMG_4761

organic fly swatter made while sitting by the campfire (the flies were SOOOOO BADDD)

 IMG_4749

beach time

IMG_4618

IMG_4626

many, many waterfalls

IMG_4893

IMG_4825

IMG_4806

IMG_4769

IMG_4657

Life Lately….

It’s been a bit crazy here lately. Although, I could not be happier with this craziness. It’s clearly summer time in full swing here in our house and I have been enjoying many of my favorite things along with working on many other projects when there is free time to be had.

Our annual date night (yes, I did say annual…sadly) is coming up and I recently picked up the tickets. I am so excited….I love this event. And this year my brother is joining us so it shall be fun for sure.IMG_4532

I find myself packing a beach bag every single weekend.

IMG_4535

I have been working hard at planning and gathering our vacation things. I love vacation but the planning part is the real challenge for me. My goal is not to forget anything and then to go and hopefully accomplish everything on the list that I have planned.

 measuring our free tent footprint IMG_4594

food/supply table so far

IMG_4589

I started taking water aerobics at a city pool. I use to love water aerobics but normally took a class in winter. Then the older I got the more I dreaded getting out and stepping outside with wet hair into the snow and ice of winter. So I stopped taking winter classes. Maybe I will enjoy summer classes more. We shall see.

IMG_1743

Meeting once a month with my brother for dinner out together. We have been doing this now a few months and I am loving it. We live in the same city and maybe see each other 2-3 times a year because, well, life is just so busy. So I thought the least we could do is try for once a month…. just him and I… and so far its been working out great.

IMG_3056

I am truly enjoying the summer heat, summer sun, and summer activities. Before I know it it will be over and life will slow down drastically. So right now I am rolling with it and enjoying every second.

 

 

Final Health Challenge of 2015

It’s December and time for the final health challenge of the year. This one could be a bit difficult especially with all the added holiday things everyone needs to get done. Although, I do believe it is one that is very important since many families loose touch with each other during this time of year.

Decembers Health Challenge Is: Family dinner at the dining room table 2x’s a week.

IMG_0482

No television, no phones, no laptops, no electronics, just dinner with the family. Hold a conversation with your husband,wife, children, parents etc. Talk about work, school, the holidays, outdoor activities etc. Family dinner can be the best part of any day if you allow it to happen. Make this a priority in your family just twice a week for the next month. I bet you will enjoy it so much that you may even continue into the new year.