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O Tannebaum

O Tannebaum that wonderful Christmas song celebrating the arboreal symbol of our greatest holiday Christmas has been playing in my head since yesterday. Last night, we put up our new tree. I had ordered it after Thanksgiving and they finally delivered it yesterday. To be fair, when I say we, I really mean the hubby put up our new tree. While it needs some plumping and some time to decompress from its packaging, it still looks pretty good. Immediately, it’s presence transformed the house into a place of holiday warmth and good tidings. It’s no wonder we left it up so long last year. It’s hard to be upset or disappointed when looking at a beautiful tree.

Hopefully, we’ll be able to start decorating the tree tonight and this weekend, which will only add to the cheer it brings. This year I’ve added a few Air Force ornaments to celebrate Jake’s service. Over the years, I’ve also picked up Christmas ornaments throughout our travels. Scandinavians know how to do Christmas, so I bought plenty of Christmas decorations while in Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland. Not only do they represent our heritage, but each decoration carries with it memories from our travels. Consequently, since we haven’t been able to travel much this year, our memories of journeys past will have to sustain us during this time of pandemic.

As we get ready to decorate the house, I’m reminded of how much I need to bake. This year I’m planning to make Pulla (Finnish cardamon bread,) Joulutortu (Finnish Christmas star cookies,) mint cookies, Krumkakes (Norwegian cookies,) Kringla (Norwegian cookies,) and lefse. Ordinarily, my mom and grandmother make molasses cookies, which I love. I have found, however, that with the humidity in Florida it is hard to make good molasses cookies. They usually come out to wet or way too dense. Nonetheless, I’m looking forward to baking this holiday season. For the star cookies and krumkakes, I’m planning to use cloudberry, lingonberry and blueberry. My personal favorite is the cloudberry.

Unrelated to Christmas, Anakin starts puppy kindergarten today. He really needs training as it has been delayed due to COVID. Due to the pandemic, we’re bringing someone into the house to work with him one on one. He’s a fabulous puppy, but he needs to be better trained. I’m excited to see how he does with the trainer.

And now for some entertainment, here’s the Mayor singing his version of O Tannebaum on a random drive to the rink nine years ago.

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*I read The Idiot, by Fyodor Dosytoevsky

*It’s day 5 of BBG 3.0 week 4 and I’m doing the ab workout today. If it’s anything like the other two workouts, it’s going to kick my butt.

*Today I ran one mile and walked a mile today.

*Today’s word of the day is propine, which means a gift.

*I’m looking forward to crashing on the couch after work with my beloved puppies!

*Before I crash with the puppies, I will be cooking up a delicious meal courtesy of HelloFresh.

*After today, my running streak stands at 4 days.

*I love the footprints the puppies leave on the patio when coming back in every morning. Today’s footprints may have included some ashes since they knocked over the grill. There are, however, no kitties in this house.

*I took my puppies including sweet Anakin for a walk. Today Anakin is wearing his Christmas bow tie. He looks mighty dapper if I say so myself. Naturally, I bought all three dogs Christmas outfits. I can’t wait to share the pictures with you. You’ll love them!

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One Year

One year ago, we said our goodbyes to Jake at MEPS Miami. We headed home, while he awaited his departure to basic training. It’s amazing how quickly the year has gone, but also amazing how the memory of all those emotions comes flooding back. Last year, I felt I had left a piece of my heart at MEPS as my boy went off into the unknown. We didn’t really know what to expect as he began his journey in the service, which left us with a bit of anxiety and fear. Of course, all of those emotions were mixed in with the immense pride we felt in seeing him take the oath.

Now here we are a year later, we’ve fallen into the rhythm of what it means to be a military family. It took adjustments. Particularly, it took a lot of adjusting in the beginning. His time in Basic was definitely the worst since we rarely heard from him. Once he graduated Basic and headed to Tech School, it got a bit easier. I say a bit because it’s never easy to be away from your kids. Also, his tech school was really rigorous and a lot of people don’t make the cut. Not surprisingly, he soared through tech school as he soared through Basic. I had worried that he’d sound sad or upset when calling from Basic. You can imagine my surprise and relief at hearing him sound happy, confident, and knowing that he was now where he belonged.

When we left him at MEPS, he was our boy. When we saw him again at BMT Graduation, he had transformed into a man and world-class airmen. Without a doubt, the young men and women that serve are given an incredible gift. They’re given the gift of understanding an objective that is bigger than themselves. Their Instructors teach them that under no circumstance is a wingman left behind. Moreover, the military teaches them responsibility and discipline. Imagine if more people lived by that credo. Maybe we wouldn’t have people fighting over wearing a mask to protect others. Perhaps people would learn to see the world through a wider lens instead of being so self-absorbed.

As for the present day, I’m now on a whole new countdown. Now, I’m counting down the days until he comes home for leave. That’s right my friends, my boy is coming home for Christmas!! Best present ever! Before he arrives, we have some decorating to do. I finally have all my photos framed and ready to hang for my Air Force wall. We also got a new Christmas tree today, which we’ll be putting up shortly. I’m curious to see if Anakin likes to hide under this one as much as our old tree. Our old tree finally gave out after fourteen years of service. It was starting to look like an extremely tall version of the Charlie Brown Christmas tree.

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*I read The Idiot, by Fyodor Dosytoevsky

*I can’t believe it’s been one year! I’ve been looking back at photos and blog posts from last December. It’s fun to look back at the pictures and see how shy he looked. The transformation from December to February was amazing!

*Today I ran one mile and walked a mile today.

*I spoke too soon the universe continues to correct me.

*I’m looking forward to crashing on the couch after work with my beloved puppies!

*Before I crash with the puppies, I will be cooking up a delicious meal courtesy of HelloFresh.

*After today, my running streak stands at 3 days. Today’s run really challenged and frustrated me.

*I love the footprints the puppies leave on the patio when coming back in every morning. The only challenge is when the muddy footprints continue onto the white tile.

*BBG 3.0 week 4 day 4: running! After taking a six week hiatus from BBG, it’s really kicking my butt.

*I took my puppies including sweet Anakin for a walk. Today Anakin is wearing his Christmas bow tie. He looks mighty dapper if I say so myself. Naturally, I bought all three dogs Christmas outfits. I can’t wait to share the pictures with you. You’ll love them!

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A Different Holiday

It was a different holiday this Thanksgiving thanks to the second wave of COVID, but the virus didn’t stop us from spending quality time with the family. Thankfully, technology allows us to be together even when we’re miles apart. It was awesome to see Jake, my folks and my brother’s family on Thanksgiving.

Naturally, I would have preferred to see them all (especially Jake) in person, but this was a great substitute. Jake, by the way, looked great, which warms my heart and lessens my anxiety. Unfortunately, the younger kids don’t like to be on the Zoom. It was like pulling teeth to get the Mayor and his cousin on the call. Goalielocks was a little better, but he was still fighting it.

Obviously, we ate entirely too much and continue to do so thanks to leftovers. Fortunately, my daily uniform continues to be yoga pants, which are mighty forgiving. I was, however, able to re-start my BBG workouts after changing the my schedule and getting the blood pressure under control. It has felt good to log some serious work outs this past week.


Tomorrow I’ll be back to work while the Mayor plays in the championship game. He’s had an awesome tournament this far leading his division in points and points per game. I’m proud of how hard he works for his team on and off the ice. Unsurprisingly, his hard work is paying off. It’s a lot of fun to watch him and his team play.

Lastly, help me wish Our Sweet Anakin a very happy first birthday! For his birthday, he got a new chewy bone, some raw hides, a Christmas collar and some Christmas outfits. Naturally, I also got his sisters some goodies too. I’d hate for them to feel left out. So even though it was a different holiday, we have a lot to be thankful for including our sweet birthday boy!

Thanksgiving 2020 Style

Thanksgiving 2020 style is wildly different for most of us thanks to COVID. It also makes our first Thanksgiving with Jake away from home. Last Thanksgiving was wonderful with my whole family in town, so he could have a great send off to BMT. Speaking of which, we are coming up on his one year anniversary. I can’t believe how fast time has gone.

This year has been tough, but there is still so much to be thankful for. First, 2020 was a year of awesome accomplishments for Jake. From graduating BMT and tech school, to earning his SEC+ certification and shipping off to his first duty station. To say he had a banner year would be an understatement. We couldn’t be more proud of the man and airmen he has become.

While our boys continue virtual school, they’re doing while and have managed to stay healthy. Hockey, thankfully, is in full swing. Too often we underestimate the importance that our kids sports and other extracurricular activities are for their development. Now with Covid, these activities are there only lifeline to the outside world. Kids need socialize.

As for Luke and I, we keep trucking on. After a rough fall that saw us replace two failing vehicles, we’re ready for the winter. I should also say we know have an additional driver, Goalielocks, which has helped a lot. I started a new role back in insurance, which I’m loving. Albeit, it keeps me extremely busy. Especially during the long hours of AEP.

To all our friends and family and to all our military families near and wide, we wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving. To military families like ours, who have an empty chair this Thanksgiving, we send our love and gratitude. May God keep our family members that serve safe and sound. To our military folks servicing near and far, thank you for your service!! Today we hold you up in prayer and gratitude.

Happy 73rd Birthday USAF!

Happy 73rd Birthday USAF! This birthday is extra special for me this year as a military mom. I’ve always had a soft spot for the Air Force since my grandfather served in the Army Air Corps during World War II. As we embarked on our new role as a military mom, it has been a beautiful experience to see our son walk some of the very halls his great grandfather walked before heading overseas. Truly, it has created a special connection between my airman and his great grandfather, who he never had the chance to meet. It’s amazing that even though my grandfather passed away nearly 40 years ago, his influence and presence is still felt today.

As for me, the universe continues to correct my overly optimistic view from earlier in the week. Perhaps it is because I’m thoroughly exhausted, but who knows. I had such high hopes for the day when my Hubby brought my coffee this morning. Our wi-fi continued to be spotty today, which makes virtual school and working from home so much fun. Consequently, I had to rearrange my day to accommodate the inconsistent wi-fi. Thankfully, the boys were extremely cooperative all day which was appreciated.

Goalielocks continues to thrive in the virtual school environment. Meanwhile, the Mayor has been attending class, but not following through on the work. Fortunately, he’s committed to correcting this behavior right away. When the Mayor commits, he follows through on it. We had the option to send them to physical school Monday, but have decided to keep them home. In Palm Beach, the only difference between the virtual school and in school experience will be the location. There’s no reason to send them back given nothing would change except geography. Moreover, Goalielocks has the best grades he has had since starting high school. I am in no hurry to send him back.

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*I read A Room With A View by E.M Forster

*Astanga yoga and teacher training with Monica from Yoga Mundo

*Today I ran one mile and walked a mile today.

*I spoke too soon the universe continues to correct me.

*I learned a new word today agastopia. It means admiration of a particular part of someone’s body.

*After today, my running streak stands at 9 days. Today’s run really challenged and frustrated me.

*I love the footprints the puppies leave on the patio when coming back in every morning. The only challenge is when the footprints consist of dog poop.

*BBG 3.0 week 2 day 5: abs, cardio, and yoga! Today’s run was one mile! It did not go well.

*I took my puppies including sweet Anakin for a walk. Today Anakin is wearing his bow tie and it doesn’t seem to be bothering him.

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Spoke Too Soon

Yesterday the universe was no my side, but I spoke toon soon. My day started with the Dunkin’ app refusing to work in any capacity. This may seem silly, but delaying my first coffee of the day is a dangerous proposition for everyone. After fidgeting with the app in the car for a few minutes, I gave up and went into the store. Thankfully, the delay in securing my coffee soon ended. As I joyously sipped my coffee, I was amazed at how technology makes our life so much easier. Yet it wreaks havoc on your day when it doesn’t work correctly. The important part of this story is that I got my coffee and it was delicious.

A visual representation of my day

It just wasn’t our day from a technology perspective. The boys got bounced from class multiple times due to wi-fi issues. As I worked away today, the lapses in wi-fi caused multiple delays and untold frustration. Even as I was about to start my run, the wi-fi cut out. How am I supposed to run two miles without my music and Larry David? That’s not a humane proposition. I stretched out my warm-up to get the wi-fi working and my Curb Your Enthusiasm playing before embarking on the two-mile treadmill run.

Meanwhile, as I toiled away at the computer, Anakin ate away at my Italian sandal. If ever there was a visual representation of my day or 2020 in general, it would be my chewed shoe. To be fair, if the cobbler couldn’t fix the shoes, I was going to toss them. Nonetheless, I experienced a little heartbreak as I picked up the sandal. Anakin, meanwhile, is so sweet and cute that it is hard to be angry with him. As I looked at him angrily, he looked up at me with the most loving look. How could I be mad?

This evening we were quite busy. Zachary had off ice with his team at 6:15 am. While I had my Purple Stride planning meeting from 6:00-7:00 pm. Consequently, we ended up eating a lot later than usual. For dinner, we cooked up paprika chicken, green beans and biscuits. This was a HelloFresh meal and it was pretty good. The chicken was a bit bland, but we only used half of the paprika. The biscuits, however, were absolute fire. Now we’re winding down by watching NHL playoffs and relaxing on the couch with our puppies.

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*I read A Room With A View by E.M Forster

*Yin yoga with Jennifer from Open Heart Yoga Studio

*I ran two miles and walked a mile today.

*I spoke too soon and the universe corrected me.

*After today, my running streak stands at 8 days.

*I love the footprints the puppies leave on the patio when coming back in every morning.

*BBG 3.0 week 2 day 4: cardio and yoga! Today’s run was two miles! It went really well for the first mile. The second mile was a bit tough.

*I took my puppies including sweet Anakin for a walk. Today Anakin is wearing his bow tie and it doesn’t seem to be bothering him.

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Successful Day

Today was a successful day. First and most importantly, I slept like a baby with the weight of the insurance exam off of my shoulder. Additionally, both kids were up and ready to go to school on time, which was a huge win. Moreover, my workouts went super well. The first of which was the BBG arms/upper body workout. Holy cow this workout was difficult, but it was so good. After BBG, I headed straight to yoga with Kaye at Open Heart Studio, which was delightful. Lastly, I ran for a mile and then walked a mile. Even today’s run went smoothly!

Of course, my day doesn’t just consist of working out. In between all the workouts, I got a lot of work done for my work. I’m super excited that we’ve branched out into a broader marketing firm. In addition to awesome professional gear, we now offer social media management/marketing, lead generation campaigns, website design and management, and e-commerce. Quite frankly, we have a lot to offer businesses of all sizes. So here’s your call to action. If you’re a business owner, let’s set up a time to chat about how I can add value to your organization. Schedule a meeting here.

Tonight I cooked up a HelloFresh meal that I picked out specifically for the Hubby since it featured Frank’s Red hot sauce. It was super easy to make, but I didn’t love this one. The mixture of the hot sauce flavor with the honey did not mesh well with my stomach. After dinner, the Hubby and Mayor headed to the rink for hockey practice. Meanwhile, I stayed home to attend the league conference call for Goalielocks’ team. Our season for national bound teams starts this weekend, which is super exciting.

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*I read A Room With A View by E.M Forster

*It turns out their are unique challenges to managing a U18 team. Thus it seems we may have a caravan to the Carolinas in our future.

*I ran a mile and walked a mile today.

*I am missing my airman and the beautiful terrain of Utah.

*After today, my running streak stands at 8 days.

*As the weather cools off, I look forward to breaking out my zephyr dress from Lilly.

*BBG 3.0 week 2 day 3: arms, cardio and yoga! Today’s run was one mile! It went really well actually. Today was a successful day!

*I took my puppies including sweet Anakin for a walk. Today Anakin is wearing his bow tie and it doesn’t seem to be bothering him.

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Reality Bites

Reality bites isn’t just the name of a great 90s video, it’s also the universe’s way of balancing our existence. Naturally, I had high hopes for Tuesday after such a great Monday. However, reality kicked back it and reality bites. It started off innocuously enough with Goalielocks assuring me he was awake and attending class. Meanwhile, the Mayor was ready to go well in advance of the first bell.

My day was a bit stressful because I had to take the health insurance licensing exam this evening. Consequently, I dedicated the vast majority of my day to balancing work and studying. In fact, I only left my office for lunch and coffee. While I toiled away in my room, the boys were busy attending school.

I asked the Mayor to do the dishes on lunch break since Goalielocks has been down for the count with a back injury. You can imagine my dismay when I open the running dishwasher to find it half full. You can contrast that with the view off full sink and countertop. Needless to say, I was not impressed. Fortunately for him, I was consumed with trying to work and study, so he got off easy.

Tonight I passed the exam in about 25 minutes. I’ve crammed the last few weeks for the test. I knew, despite my nerves, that I was well prepared. It was also a good preview of what the real estate exam will will be like. Obviously, as soon as I passed a weight was lifted from my shoulders. All my hard work paid off. Afterward, I had a nice dinner cooked by my hubby.

Lastly, I worked through some stretching with Goalielocks, who has had severe lower back pain the last two days. Hopefully, the stretching we did will alleviate his pain. Now we’re watching hockey waiting to see if Tampa Bay will seal the deal tonight. Oh and in case you were wondering, Goalielocks didn’t make it to first period.

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*I read A Room With A View by E.M Forster

*It turns out their are unique challenges to managing a U18 team. Thus it seems we may have a caravan to the Carolinas in our future.

*I ran two miles and walked a mile today.

*While I took my exam, my hubby stayed home and cooked a wonderful meal.


*After today, my running streak stands at 7days.

*I learned a new word today: ichthyophagous, which means to eat seafood.

*BBG 3.0 week 2 day 2: cardio and yoga! Today’s run was two miles! It sucked!

*I took my puppies including sweet Anakin for a walk. Today Anakin is wearing his bow tie and it doesn’t seem to be bothering him.

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Happy Monday!

Happy Monday is a blog title that I have never used in the three-plus years I’ve had this blog. Admittedly, Monday’s are usually associated with unhappiness. Rather they’re associated with the desire to bang your head against a brick wall as you deal with the inane life that is corporate America. You know the kind of day where you’re in meetings all day that could have been emails and the most intelligent response of the day was “yada, yada, yada.” Now that I’m out of that life, I’ve found Mondays to be much nicer.


Now my children have tried to mess up my Happy Monday vibes with their virtual school antics. However, they were even onboard for the easy and happy Monday. That’s right folks we had no virtual school issues today. My boys were on top of it, which made me happy as a clam.

Naturally, I had a lot do work to do myself, but working from home and outside of a boilerplate environment is significantly less stressful from the corporate world. I was quite productive professionally and personally. I set several key meetings and made new connections in the professional realm.

In between my work obligations, I was able to fit in my BBG 3.0 leg workout and a run. This BBG 3.0 is no joke. Honestly, it’s quite a step up from round 2.0. I’m ready for it, but I know it’s going to hurt tomorrow. As for my run, it felt good. I find that intermixing my workouts between my work meetings and obligations has improved my effectiveness. Moreover, I feel energized and ready to tackle everything including the virtual school blues.

Alas, this happy Monday on which all the stars aligned for a great day will soon be over. Hopefully, I will write a joyful Monday post soon and not in another three years. I should also admit that I bought Anakin a new collar and bow tie. No lies, he’s simply the cutest puppy. On top of my cute puppy, I got some great pics of Jake and Mel from Utah. Their smiles always put a smile on my face.

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*I read A Room With A View by E.M Forster

*It turns out their are unique challenges to managing a U18 team. Thus it seems we may have a caravan to the Carolinas in our future.

*I ran a mile and walked a mile today.

*I cooked a wonderful meal courtesy of HelloFresh. It was easy to make and super tasty.


*After today, I am back in workout clothes, but my running streak stands at 6 days.

*I’m a little jealous that Mel is visiting Jake, but I love getting their pictures.

*BBG 3.0 week 2 day 1: legs, cardio and yoga

*I took my puppies including sweet Anakin for a walk.

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Two Day Streak

I don’t mean to brag, but I have a two day streak of getting dressed in real clothes. This is probably the first time since the pandemic started that I’ve worn non-workout clothes on two consecutive days. Last night we went to dinner, so I dressed up. And then today we went to a friend’s house for dinner, so I got dressed up. Don’t fear, however, as I plan to go back to my covid uniform of yoga pants and workout tanks.

Since we we had dinner plans followed by hockey practice, I had to make my morning super productive. First, I had to study insurance for a forthcoming exam. Next I had to complete my BBG ab workout for the week. Finally, I had to log my mile run. Thankfully, all three went superbly. Albeit, I have to say I hate raise leg sit-ups. They’re the absolute worst. Also, I’m still not a fan of half burpees. Nonetheless, I slayed the workout and look forward to my abs being sore tomorrow.

We had dinner at our friends house, so the Mayor could see his injured teammate. AG broke his wrist in the tournament last week. Unfortunately, he’ll be having surgery to correct the break on Wednesday. Please say a prayer that his surgery goes well and recovery is quick. All weekend, my boy has been harassing me asking when we’d be going to his house. I mean non-stop from morning til night.

When we finally headed to their house, the Mayor was quite happy. We had a blast hanging out with them. It’s been far too long since we’ve been on the same hockey team or hung out. If tonight was any indication, we’ll have an incredibly fun season. The food was also delicious. I don’t think I’ll need to eat until tomorrow evening.

Afterward we headed to the rink for practice. Originally, we had hope to setup a scrimmage this weekend, but no teams were available. Fortunately, we were able to run an extra practice with the ice team, which is probably more important than a scrimmage at this point. The squad worked hard and the coaches wore them out. As for the rest of the night, we’re just chilling on the couch watching Family Guy.

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*I read A Room With A View by E.M Forster

*This morning I completed my independent health insurance study course.

*I ran a mile and walked a mile today.


*After today, I have a two day streak of dressing up and a five day running streak.

*I’m a little jealous that Mel is visiting Jake. I’d love to go for a nice hike on the woodsy side of the mountains.

*BBG 3.0 week 1 day 5: abs, cardio and yoga

*Oh Sally, thanks to you good weather was nothing but an illusion this weekend. 

*I took my puppies including sweet Anakin for a walk.

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