Life Lately – A Glimpse Back to August and September 2017

Summer 2017 flew by like all summers do.  But for those who liken summer to just the months of June, July and August are selling themselves short.   Why stop at August?  Because school starts up again?   Hellooooo… who lives for the week when there is always a weekend?   September is always an extended summer month for this girl and it’s been slammed full of awesome. Plus, let’s just note the horrid temps we’ve been having lately.   Mid-90’s at the end of September?

 WHAT WAS THAT?!

Let’s take a step back in time.

{August}

The first part of the month was Jessica’s annual girls trip to the Ozarks with a few newbies along for the ride but minus a few previous attendees who were unable to make it.  The Ozarks trip looked quite different than years prior (recap of previous years here and here), however, you can guarantee fun was had, drinks were ingested, a few belongings were lost at the bottom of the lake and a hangover or two may have happened.

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Thanks again, Jeff and Donna for opening up your home to us.

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August 11-12th

Clint officiated a wedding in Red Oak, IA the second weekend of August so we headed down on the bikes Friday the 11th to help with rehearsal.

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Added bonus: one of the best meals we have had in a long time courtesy of the Red Coach Inn Lounge.   Had NO IDEA their food was so legit.  I take back my Red Roach sentiments.  *shoulder shrug

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The wedding on Saturday was absolutely gorgeous and everything went off without a hitch!

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And I, of course, loved every second I got to hang with Sara’s cute little fam.

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The entire month of August provided a lot of two-wheel time.   The number of sunsets captured was pretty spectacular.  This particular night we were just leaving The Twisted Tail after dinner and headed straight into the sunset.   I can’t get enough!

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Mid-August we had the opportunity to take my in-laws to dinner and we picked out the Driftwood Inn and Blair, NE.   The views during our pre-dinner drinks and appetizers were enough to make me want to go back for another evening cocktail anytime!   If you head that way, be sure to check their hours and give yourself plenty of time.  The seating is limited, the days and hours are limited and the wait time to get in is long, but clearly, worth it.  The place was packed!

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HOLD THE PHONE!

Did you know Clint has an award-winning truck?  At some point in August, we popped over to a car show with this man-manipulated beast I lovingly call Mater.   Listen, it’s apparently a thing because it was quite the conversation starter.  All I know is it’s a former dump truck (I think) that he put a box on.   It won best unfinished.

To me, it wins the title of “just another one of Clint’s unfinished projects”.

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And then around came my 37th birthday weekend.   Plans?  What plans?   Friends, let me tell you, August hit me like a ton of bricks!  I was out of the office traveling every day for over two weeks and facilitated 17 orientations where I was front facing students, parents, and administrators.  That’s a LOT of people and questions… and repeated answers.

So, I started to make plans, I didn’t like them, I changed them, I didn’t commit to anything, then I committed, people were busy, and then I uncommitted from it all because dang it… I just didn’t want plans.   None.  So, that’s what I did.  Whatever the hell I wanted on a schedule that didn’t matter if I was late or early too.

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And it was glorious.  

I got a solid long run in at my fave Zorinsky Lake and then we put some more miles in on the bikes.   Two-wheeled therapy, beers, dinner, and a nightcap to watch the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight at Tyree’s.   It was absolutely perfect and what I needed.

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And let’s not forget about this ooey gooey bowl of sweetness!  She makes every day a great day! ❤

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And then Tuesday the 29th hit and all of a sudden I’m 37.   THIRTY-SEVEN!   And super proud of it.   If you are one of those who keeps aging backwards… yo.   Stop it.  Own it!   Look at all the cool things you’ve experienced in your life to this point.  The things you’ve learned.   The mountains you’ve moved.   I proudly state my age.  Who gives a shit anyway?   Life friggin ROCKS!

The day started with getting absolutely SPOILED by my INSANIANCS and a 6 pack of beer from Jordan L.

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{Ok for real.  The number of people who actually thought I drank that bad boy at 5:30am after posting it on FB was a little ridic.   5:30am is a bit early don’t ya think?}

I mean clearly, I waited until the more respectable hour of 10:30am to crack it open.  #duh

 

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Thanks to Kelly for the extra steps in making my morning start off just right.  Look at that load of goodness.

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And the day of happiness continued with fresh out of the oven muffins from Bridgette, lunch with my mama, Dave and Gabe, goodies from some very special co-workers, flowers from the hubs, a hand-delivered cookie from Jess, love from the cat and sushi dinner to close out the night.

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37.  

You fine.

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{September}

I am still continuing working on my photo taking skills and fortunately for me had two more incredible test subjects.  Check out a few sneaks below!

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Pirtlefest Preps started happening on September 2nd and lasted through September 16th.   The weekends preps consisted of truck repairs, hole digging, pole barn cleaning, cabin sweep, human fooseball construction while also consuming a fair amount of food and booze.

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Friday, September 8th was Clarinda’s homecoming and my beautiful cousin was part of the Homecoming Court.  I made a last minute decision early that morning to take a 1/2 day off work and make my way to Clarinda to see her in action.  Fortunately for me, I caught a gorgeous sunrise on that two-wheeled beauty.

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And speaking of gorgeous!  Megan- red is your color!

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No trip to Clarinda would ever be complete without a stop to see Kayla and fortunately for us, Nicole stopped by and joined in on the fun as well!

An afternoon of beers and besties?  YES, PLEASE, ALWAYS!

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I timed my departure to coincide with the sunset.  The backroads of Iowa never disappoint, so there I sat, by myself, no traffic, the only sounds coming from the low grumble of my bike and the chirps of bugs, watching the sunset ever so softly until it disappeared.

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You all know how I feel about finding time to reset and self-reflect.   For me, the best time to do that is on the bike at sunset with nothing but miles ahead, miles behind and the only sounds heard are from the bike and my own thoughts.

Be comfortable being by yourself.  Get comfortable having hard conversations with yourself.   That’s where true growth begins.

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Saturday the 9th was the annual Scroggs memorial run out of Clarinda, so instead of heading to the farm to continue helping with the Pirtlefest shenanigans, I took off on the bike BACK to Clarinda to enjoy an afternoon of riding.

The weather was perfect, the miles long and the company a treat.

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Sunday, September 10th marked 6 years of marriage.

Killing it!

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Monday, September 11th marked my first day back as a playing member of the Nebraska Wind Symphony.   It had been 6 years since I had touched my clarinet and 11 years since I played repertoire that challenged me. I was a member of NWS from 2004-2006 while still living in Clarinda but left the group during a transition period in my life and then actually left music altogether in 2011 when I stepped away from teaching.  Joining the music world again had definitely been on my heart for the last year. In fact, my Christmas present to my Gr’pa Goecker last year was a written promise to see what I could do about becoming a playing NWS member again… and Monday the 11th I fulfilled that promise. He’s delighted as he’s certainly been the one to consistently bring up how he wishes I still played.  It’s been GREAT to be back… but I’ll admit the Monday evening 7:15-9:15pm rehearsals are an adjustment for my 4am Tuesday alarm clock.   Ouch!!

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Mid-September brought some changes at work.  The details are unnecessary, but the love I feel for my colleagues and the future of my position is promising.  Thanks to many special people for helping lead into that transition and through the changes yet to come.

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And with that, I’ll leave you be.   We’ve got Pirtlefest and an Arkansas trip to round out September, but those adventures certainly deserve their own post.

… Oh, the stories and photos to share!  🙂

 

Cheers!

 

 

 

Biker Feature {Jenny}

An August evening in Emerson, IA served as the setting for my photo practice session #2 with none other then Jenny and her green machine.   Jenny lovingly called this session her “senior” photos, referencing more age then the traditional HS milestone.  We had a fun evening and I learned a lot about lighting and what the lack there-of does to photo quality.  Each session I learn something new, which is exactly my intention and purpose.

Thanks, Jenny!  Enjoy a few of my favorite photos from the night.

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Cheers!

Biker Feature {Liz}

Three Christmases ago, Clint bought me a really nice Canon Rebel.   I was stoked!   Took it out of the box, attempted to figure out the manual settings, and then put it back in the box and let it sit.   Thanks for the Christmas present, babe!

This summer I am making a concentrated effort to start learning the ropes, with the end goal of being able to use my camera in the manual settings to produce quality photos of my biker friends that they will enjoy.  Fortunately, I have some pretty great friends who are willing and eager to serve as my guinea pigs and Liz raised her hand to be my first experiment.

Holy crap, I was nervous!  What if I was unable to translate what I saw in my head to my camera?  What if I botched it, completely?  And what about putting it out there for others?   What about the judgement?

All of that aside, we scheduled a date, I chugged a few beers and we went to work.   200+ photos later, I am pleased with what was captured and am excited to share with you a few of the highlights.   Now, to continue to learn and grow.

Thanks, Liz for being the PERFECT “first” for me.   It was a ton of fun.

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Cheers!

Women of Harley: Marcy L.

Harleys & Heels | Biker Bitch Feature #7 | Marcy L.

 

Meet: Marcy

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1. How long have you been riding?

Been riding my own for about 6 yrs now!

 

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2. What do you ride?

I ride a 2003 Harley Davidson Heritage Softail

 

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3. How many bikes have you owned and why did you choose your current model?

This the 3rd bike I’ve owned.

And for the record:  

I didn’t choose it, he chose me.

 

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4. Does your bike have a name?

 

jared name


5. Tell us the story behind why/when you decided to ride your own bike?

Quite honestly, I got tired of waiting for jerks to come take me for rides.

 

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6. Do you have a biker who is your inspiration?

Many of my “sista’s of the wind” are my inspiration.

 

marcy crew

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But, my daddy?  

He’s my hero.

 

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And my grand-kids?

My heart.

 

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7. What are some of your favorite things about the biker lifestyle?

I love all the awesome people I have met while riding.

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I also love all of the rallies I’ve attended and all the different places I’ve traveled.

Can’t wait to see where the road will take Jared and I next.  

marcy


8. Give us one of your favorite two-wheeled stories.

One of my most favorite bike trips was a 6 hour ride to Soldier, IA with my girl Chris Yager.   The trip should have only taken maybe a little over an hour.   Let’s just say, we showed some of those country boyz how to greet a biker bitch.

marcy and chris

 

I also can’t forget the Algona Freedom Rally Trip.   

mary algona

 


9. What advice would you give other females who are thinking about riding their own?

While riding, NEVER let anybody take you out of your OWN comfort zone!

 

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10.There are many “Biker Codes” out there. If you had a favorite what would it be? Or, if you were to add your own code, what would you say?

What NOT to wear while riding is a biker code I like!  Some people just don’t get that flip-flops & shorts are not safe to ride in!

 

marcy ride


11. Final words?

Marcy didn’t leave you with any final words – but I will.

I met Marcy a few years ago and I can tell you… I have NEVER met anyone like her.

This is one chick that lives life to the utmost fullest and one we could all take lessons from.  

Marcy is full of life, lives in the now, is a true free spirit, never follows the norm, lives the life she wants to live, is loyal to her family and friends, doesn’t know a stranger, lives EACH and EVERY day with such passion and does it all with ZEST, enthusiasm, charisma, passion and a whole heart.

 

If we could all learn anything from Marcy – it would be to not take yourself so seriously and experience everything you possibly can.

Marcy Spirit

Thank You, Marcy for being you!

You are a true gift to the Biker Community and our little crew known as the Biker B!tches.

 

 

Cheers!

Keep up-to-date on all Biker Bitch Features:

#1: Ashley H.

#2: Jen M.

#3: Chris Y.

#4: Lora J

#5: DeAnn P.

#6: Tyree S.

 

You might also be interested in:

The 9th Annual B!tch Ride

The Making of the Biker B!tch Crew

Biker Feature: DeAnn P.

Harleys & Heels | Biker Bitch Feature | DeAnn P.

 

Meet: DeAnn 

 

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1. How long have you been riding?

I’ve had my license for 4 years but my hubby bought me an Enduro 14 years ago.

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2. What do you ride?

Kawasaki Vulcan 900 LT

 

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3. How many bikes have you owned and why did you choose your current model?

Two!  My Enduro and Vulcan. I chose the Vulcan as it is the same size as a Heritage Softail but was more budget friendly.  I am PROUD to say I worked a second job for 3 years to pay cash for it.

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4. Does your bike have a name?

stella

 


5. Tell us the story behind why/when you decided to ride your own bike?

When I went on a trip with my mom.  She’s also a rider.

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6. Do you have a biker who is your inspiration?

Can’t name just one!  My mom, my dad and my friend Lora.  My dad used to do hill climbs!

 

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DeAnn and her parents

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7. What are some of you favorite things about the biker lifestyle?

Total 100% acceptance.

No judgement.

I feel beautiful when I ride. 

It is the only time I feel accepted.  

 

 

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8. Give us one of your favorite two-wheeled stories.

The long trips I take with the girls!    Each year I get together with a group of women and we ride to a new destination.   So far I’ve ridden to Arkansas, Milwaukee, Wisconsin Dells,  Illinois, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wyoming.   Next year I’m going to the 75th Anniversary of Sturgis!

I am also glad to have met all the Biker B!tches this last summer!

 

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9. What advice would you give other females who are thinking about riding their own?

Try it. I guarantee you’ll like it.

 

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DeAnn and Elizabeth

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10.There are many “Biker Codes” out there. If you had a favorite what would it be?

Never leave a biker behind.

 

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11. Final words?

Riding was the best decision I’ve ever made. It calms me in an otherwise restless mind.

 

Riding makes me feel empowered.

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DeAnn

 

 

 

Cheers!

Keep up-to-date on all Biker Bitch Features:

#1: Ashley H.

#2: Jen M.

#3: Chris Y.

#4: Lora J

 

 

You might also be interested in:

The 9th Annual B!tch Ride

The Making of the Biker B!tch Crew