Bikes, Blues & BBQ 2016

Now that winter has set in and the cold has forced the two-wheels into hibernation, it only seems logical to rub salt in the wounds and reminisce on 90 degree weather and wind in the face, right?

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Arkansas

I had no idea how beautiful a state Arkansas is.  The trees, the hills, the hidden gems, the miles of curves.   Hands down my favorite rally trip so far, minus the time Clint did that little down on one knee number in Sturgis.

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On Wednesday, September 21st, a small group of us took off from Omaha to make our way down to Fayetteville, AR for the annual Bikes, Blues & BBQ rally.   It was a relatively easy and quick ride down there (I’ll bypass how much my seat SUCKS).  We made a pit-stop at the The Garage in Harrisonville, MO where we signed our names to the wall.  Score 1 for me as I found some fellow friends signatures who had been there a few days before us!

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We only made three official stops on the way there for fuel and to stretch, so we made great time!  Far cry from the ride to Sturgis!  Once there we set up camp and awaited the arrival of the Sullivan’s before we settled in for campsite brews and laughter.

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When on vacation, we are in no rush to get anywhere at anytime.   No rules.  No schedule.   When everyone is up we all decide where to go and what to do.   This particular rally included a lot of riding and a lot less walking around and boozing.  During the day anyway.  That might be due to the fact that towns in the hills are few and far between and they apparently don’t believe in bars.   This rally is the complete opposite of the Sturgis experience and I think is why it might have taken over the #1 spot in rally experiences.   #beentheredonethat

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Our first day of riding was pretty spectacular.  The sights, the curves, the beauty!

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Tourist alert

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We found ourselves a pretty incredible BBQ joint called Rivertowne BBQ in Ozark, AR.   The sweet potato fries and accompanying sauce to dip them in was to-die-for!

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Bellies full, beer craving satisfied and back out on the road we went for several more hours, winding our way back to Fayetteville for campsite shots, brews and relaxing.

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The next two days consisted of a lot more riding…

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Parking lot rest-stops while waiting on a few lost riders…

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Getting lost collectively…

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Dancing while lost…

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Roadside beers FINALLY thanks to a random roadside convenience store…

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Ever wanna take a back road?  Or put a little gravel in your travel?  Tear down two lane country roads?

We feelin’ ya, Rodney Atkins.

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I wouldn’t necessarily say we were lost again.  Just exploring…

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Tracy has this fun way about her.  And when I say fun, I mean she holds a convincing personality that gets me to do things I wouldn’t normally do.  Last year Sturgis?  She had me ziplining.

This year?

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It. Was. Incredible!  I need a helicopter hook-up, like stat!   So fun and slightly terrifying when the pilot pulled some funny stomach dropping business.

Thanks, Arkansas Helicopters for the fun!

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A little lawn-tractor pull action to close out our campsite experience was entertaining thanks to a very drunk redneck.

Y’all.  This guy was redneck.

Feel free to re-watch his awesomeness from my saved Snap here.

Should I remind you the pulls were lawn tractors.

It wasn’t really that cool.

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My take-aways from Arkansas.

1. Take beer in the saddlebags anytime you leave camp

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2. The official campsite of BB&B doesn’t really have anything official going on so bring your own entertainment.

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3. We should have used Uber to get to the action on Dickson Street.  This is a reminder for next year!

4. If you don’t sit next to the girls they will create snap stories about it.

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5. Find the camping spot with the fans!  Drowns out the interstate noise and the flysimg_0658

6. If one trailers a bike to a rally, one will always get made fun of.

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7. Twinning is appropriate

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8. Time spent with the hubs is always the best.

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Cheers to BB&B 2017!

 

 

 

Ozarks 2016 | Girls Trip

Another girls trip to Jessica’s moms on the Lake of the Ozarks is now in the books and as always, it came and went far too quickly. The trip never disappoints and I’m always impressed at the amount of booze a few chicks can consume.

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What I love most about this little trip is it’s with girls who are laid back, free spirits, trustworthy, not worried about nor ever even mentioned body image/swimsuit comfort levels, accepting, supportive and of course crazy fun.

That’s a combination worthy of repetition.

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Our crew of 5 left the Omaha area around noon on a Thursday and headed South to meet up with the Des Moines crew of 2.   We all made it around the 6 o’clock hour and headed to the grocery store to pick up our food and drink for the weekend.

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Our plan for the next few days: to drink, eat and be merry and never once leave the premises with the exception of a boat ride or Jet Ski ride.

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Mission: Accomplished.

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We drank.  

A lot.

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Don’t you worry your pretty little faces.   We killed the beers too.

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We swam.

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We sunbathed with Joey

 

Most of all we made sure to have zero cares.

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We PiYo’d by the lake each morning.

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And cooled off by jumping into the lake, immediately following, fully clothed.   Because how else would you do it?

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We sang Karaoke.  

And by “we” I mean everyone but me! 🙂

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We took a boat ride thanks to Jeff and Donna, the two greatest hosts of all time!

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Enjoyed dinners together on the patio.

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And also where we chatted well into the late hours of the night watching some of the most beautiful sunsets you could see.

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And maybe even creeped on the neighbors a bit.  

#glasshouse

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Oooh girl… I’m telling.

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Snuggle time at the top of the stairs for no real reason other then it sounded like a great idea.

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We even enjoyed a few evening walks…

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 or skips, if you were Jess and I.

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And sometimes we had a little too much drinky drinky before the noon hour.

No judgement.   Vacay.

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Basically our weekend was full of laughter, sunshine, tan lines, sun burns for a few, booze, food, entertaining girl talk, a few happy tears and a ton of awesome memories that leave us talking about it for weeks to come.

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Yet another amazing Ozarks trip in the books.   I’m already scheduling in my head the next one.  

Donna – next weekend cool?

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Cheers!

 

 

Life Lately | April 2016

Hi Friends!   I was inspired this weekend by my girl Katie over at Yellow Mango Life to start blogging again.  She took a year off and I missed her updates!  When I saw that little notification come up in my inbox that she had a few new posts up, I jumped for joy.  She’s back!  And with the CUTEST little addition to her family.  Go check it out!

So for me… where do I even start?  Here we go!

Clint’s Birthday – January

The annual Des Moines trip for Clint’s Birthday, aka Winter Party, ensued.  A riot as normal.

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February – Certifications

Certified some AMAZING new TurboKick and INSANITY instructors in Knoxville, IA.  I love my Master Trainer job.  LOVE!

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Colorado – Copper Mountain – Annual Family Ski Vacay

Our annual trip to Copper Mountain Ski Resort with Clint’s family was, as always, a GREAT time away from work and everyday life to just enjoy family, clean air and fresh powder.

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Master Classes – March

The first two weeks of March I spent traveling to Northwest Iowa and Red Oak, IA to offer free TurboKick and INSANITY Master Classes.  Offering Master Classes is a way to spread the format love across the States and to notify folks of upcoming certifications.  Always a great way to spend a day!  Want me to come to you?  Hit me up and let’s work it out.  Bonus?  I don’t charge for Master Classes! 😉

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Biker B!tch Winter Sucks Party!

An evening with the Biker B’s.  Shenanigans all around with these ladies.

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St Patrick’s Day Shenanigans

…with my morning INSANITY crew at the YMCA!  I didn’t get to drink a green beer on St. Pat’s day this year because at 7pm, I was boarding a plane for California.

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Master Trainer Newbie Bootcamp – California – March 18th-20th

Master Trainer Newbie Bootcamp.  A time for Master Trainer’s within their first year as an MT to come together, learn, workout, learn some more, get pushed, learn some more, repeat, repeat, repeat.  It was an experience to remember.  It was hard, it was rewarding, it was eye opening, enlightening and humbling.  I made new friends, connected with my 2015 Ambassador audition group, met some of the most influential folks in the fitness industry and learned from some of the best of the best.   I look forward to future bootcamps when I am not the newbie!  🙂

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Master Trainer newbie bootcamp was the culmination of a year long learning experience for me.

February 2015: Auditioned in Colorado to become a Master Trainer.
March 2015: Entered the 6-12 month master trainer ambassador program to start the learning and training process.
March 2015: Advanced into the fast track program for TurboKick.
May 2015: booked my first TBK certification as a trainer
June 2015: Cancelled my first certification. 😕 I wasn’t ready. There are times in life when you have to know when to push through something and when you have to pull back. I wasn’t mentally prepared to offer my own certification. I am hyper critical. Hyper aware. Hyper sensitive. I knew going into the certification wasn’t in my best interest, my future instructors or the companies. I chose more time to continue to hone my skills and craft.
October 2015: Hosted my very first TurboKick certification as a trainer. I finally did it.
2016: hit the ground running with five certifications completed, an added format of INSANITY and many more certifications on the horizon.

What a CRAZY 3 days of intense training, education and fun with fellow master trainers and ambassadors facilitated by some of the best MT’s and format/industry experts in the business.

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The remaining Colorado Auditioning Crew.

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Super Workout

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Region 2: Represent!

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Sarah.

I officially met Sarah in California after speaking with her for a few months prior.  I have grown so close to this girl through this experience.  She is genuine, loyal, honest and you always know what you are getting with her.  She and I continue nearly daily conversations and use each other to bounce ideas off of, talk through scenarios and build each other up.  I dig her.  She’s my jam.

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Time with Friends – Erin was back for a few days.  The three of us were roomies 10 years ago.  TEN years ago I moved to Omaha and these chicks took me under their wild and crazy wings.  Then Erin left us and we were forced to grow up. HA!  It’s always fun to see her when she comes back.  My oh my have our get-togethers changed.

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Grandma Evan’s 80th Birthday!

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I just LOVE this woman.  What a fun weekend of celebrating her greatness with family. ❤

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The Brother. ❤

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The Nieces ❤

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The Husband

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The Mom

Wine and Junk Run – Saturday, April 17th

Sara owns and operates SW Iowa Primitives, Antiques and Furniture in Emerson, IA.  Each Spring and Fall she does a tour of wineries and shops in neighboring towns.  Each stop requires a signature or stamp from the owner, you hit each stop and make your way back to the shop for food and prizes.  It’s a great way to bring business to the small communities, find unique items and enjoy a day with your friends.

And if you have friends like mine, we definitely make it a day to remember.

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Present Day!

There you have it… a quick recap of a few highlighted moments over the last few months.  Today was a day of housework, meal prep, dog snuggles, an afternoon Harley ride with my man and now evening downtime.  Cheers to a great week and maintaining at LEAST a weekly blog update. 🙂  No promises, folks. No promises.

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Wine and Junk Run | October 24th, 2015

October 24th marked my friend Sara’s first Wine and Junk Run hosted by her shop SW Iowa Primitives, Antiques and Furniture.

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What exactly is a Wine and Junk run you ask?  Similar to a Poker Run where you pay an entry fee, receive a flyer of participating stops where you either draw a card or receive a stamp to mark your attendance and slowly make your way back to Stop 1 where there is typically food, drink and prizes.   They are a great way to fund-raise money typically for a great cause and always a guaranteed good times with friends and new friends you make along the way.   This particular run consisted of vehicles and stops at various Primitive and Antique shops/boutiques and a few wineries.

Jessica and I made our way down from Omaha at 10am to catch the 11am signup and were well on our way by 11:30am.  Oh what a day we had.

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Stop #1 Wabash Wine Co. Shenandoah

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This location has been open for 10 years and now includes a restaurant.   We stayed for wine sampling of 5 different wines, all of which were either sweet red or whites.   No dry for me!  Jess bought a bottle of sweet red, we signed the guest book and made our way out to Stop #2!

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Stop #2 Ray ‘s Shabby Cottage, Shenandoah, IA

A lot of neat furniture pieces and many other goodies can be found at Ray’s.  Definitely check out their facebook page (linked above) or stop in if you are near Shenandoah!

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Stop #2.5 Emerald Isle and a random school house.

Because we wanted a beer and a bite to eat.   As for the school house stop, don’t ask.  Does there need to be a reason other then we are just a bunch of kids at heart with random ideas for entertainment?

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Plus, Hunter is Jessica’s niece. We thought it was fitting.

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Legit study sesh

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Stop #3 Sugar Clay Winery & Vineyards, Thurman, IA

We definitely had the most fun at Sugar Clay Winery in Thurman, IA.   Beautiful location, friendly and accommodating owners, fairy-tale like setting.  The perfect package for an afternoon with girlfriends.

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Because who doesn’t love a good tree huggin’?

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We sat around an imaginary camp fire and enjoyed everyone’s company, despite the looks of pure un-enthusiasm from this crew. 😉  They were having a great time, I promise.

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Ms. Sara, Jess and I.

Janice, Erin and Ardie (Three Generations)

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We spent a solid amount of time here, proof in the off the wall photos.

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And then it was time to move on to Stop #4.

but not before we paused briefly for some senior photos. 

Again, don’t ask.  We do what we do and that’s reason enough for us.

Perhaps wine had something to do with it as well…

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Stop #4 Mitzi Mo’s Boutique, Glenwood, IA

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She has TONS of cute stuff in her store.  From chalk paint, to jewelry, to baked goodies and a little of everything in between.  Definitely worth your time to swing into this quaint little store off the town square in Glenwood, IA


Stop #5 Vine Street Cellars, Glenwood, IA

Vine Street Cellars in Glenwood is located right on the town square and is a very clean, fresh and sophisticated winery.  We liked our visit, as did Janice, Erin and Ardie. 🙂

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Stop #6 SW Iowa Primitives. Emerson, IA

The last stop took everyone back to Emerson for some delicious food cooked by Troy and Sara as well as prizes and fun for all involved.   Jessica and I were unfortunately unable to make the stop due to a Halloween party and costume change I had on my agenda, however, the entire day was a success!

Rumor has it Sara is making next years run even bigger and better with more stops at shops and wineries.   Make sure to join in on the fun next year!

Cheers!

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Holy Desserts

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For Pirtlefest 2015 I made 11 pans of desserts.

E…LEV…EN…

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It took me from 9pm on Thursday night to 4pm Friday afternoon to get them done, but I got them done.  And boy were they yummy!

I will share the links with you for three of the recipes:

  1. Peanut Butter Sheet Cake
  2. Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
  3. Caramel Mallow Brownies
    • I altered my original recipe by melting the caramel bits with a little milk, poured it over the brownie base and then added the mallow and frosting.  It was the BEST idea I have had yet!

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I LOVE to bake, as long as it isn’t cookies.  Those little bastards take forever.   But, after almost 24 hours of baking, my Kitchen Aid Mixer was happy to see me go.

For now. 🙂

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Cheers!