The Extended Celebration

Yesterday my dad told me that he always feels like he gets an extended celebration for his birthday because it’s always within days of Father’s Day. This year was the longest gap between the two, with five days between them. So, in that spirit, I think the man deserves another post.

But honestly, even if he hadn’t set that up so perfectly, I would’ve been posting about Fathers Day anyway because it was one of my all-time favorites.

It started out as all Father’s Days seem to start for us: church, exchange a birthday gift or two and go out for breakfast. He decided that instead of going to our usual breakfast spot, he wanted to go down to Stillwater. It was very busy, but it was such a gorgeous day that I didn’t even mind.

We ate our breakfast, spent some time in an antique bookstore, where he seemed to find the most peculiar books, got some popcorn from one of my favorite “candy” stores (I never get candy there–only popcorn!) and took a walk along the river.

I love this town so much. I’m so glad it’s my home.


(I was in a picture-taking mood, but he wouldn’t stop talking so this was as good as it got! I tried to get both of my parents to take a decent family selfie, but they weren’t catching on.)

I love him even though he talks during pictures.

When we got home, we sat in the “dorm room” and talked and ate some popcorn while my mom looked through some catalogs and became inspired. After yelling at us for being so stupid and goofy (aka happy) she started researching various things, including zip lines.

I’ve wanted a zip line for like, ever. My uncle made one in his backyard when I was younger and I loved riding it whenever we were there. We have the perfect yard for a zip line. I used to imagine flying through the woods from our tree house to the “front” yard. So naturally that was the first place we scouted out.

We literally spent an hour walking around the yard and measuring distances between trees. It became a mission. We have a family party coming up in three weeks and my mom is determined to have it ready to go by then. We finally decided on a shorter and less exciting place, which we figured would be a good place to learn about zip lining. We’ll eventually move it somewhere more exciting.

Anyway, we ordered the zip line kit and I started on the dinner my dad requested: enchiladas.

He saw The Pioneer Woman making them on TV Saturday morning and said “That looks like a good meal! Maybe we should have that tomorrow!” Honestly, I was kind of leary about it–I’ve never really liked that sort of thing. But I was excited to make something new and different. I liked the flavors, but didn’t like the texture. It needed some crunch, in my opinion. But my parents genuinely loved it, so I would consider that a win!

We finished the meal off with whipped cream and assorted berries–doesn’t get any better.

After we stuffed ourselves full of whipped cream, my dad wanted to embrace the sunlight on the longest day of the year by going for a golf cart ride. The sky was so gorgeous. I could’ve stayed out there taking pictures until it got really dark. But this was his day.


When we came in, we all fell asleep watching The Judge on TV.

And this morning, the first thing my dad said to me was “That really was a nice Father’s Day. Thank you.”


June 16

I had to take some time out of my newly-busy life to wish my favorite man a happy birthday!

He’s been there for me from the beginning…

In good times…

And bad…

He’s had to deal with me at my craziest…

And he has adjusted to life in the era of selfies.

He’s my rock. My counselor. My supporter. The source of so many of my smiles and laughs. My role model. My inspiration. My best friend. My dad.

Throwin’ it back to one of my favorite June 16s. Puerto Rico and “totally me.”

Couldn’t love this man any more.

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Deep Dark Secret/Blast from the Past

So, funny story. I sent a letter and assorted items to One Direction in the height of my love for them (which was very unlike me–and I made sure to tell them that, too.). That was 2 years ago.

This came in the mail today.


I had completely forgotten. And to be honest, I had kind of lost interest in them. But that’s how it goes, right?

My mom asked if I was going to get rid of it. To which I promptly and matter-of-factly said “absolutely not.”

And, okay I have to confess something. I always hated Zayn. I can’t even say it was secretly–I openly disliked him. A lot. So there’s this little part of me that loves the timing of this. (For those of you who don’t know–although how could you not?–Zayn left the band a few months ago.) I never wanted his autograph and I didn’t get it!

In case you were wondering what else I sent them (I know you are), I directed the letter at Harry because he is a dirty little Packer fan and I wanted to send some Vikings gear. They love tattoos and Harry has a Packer tattoo so I sent some temporary Vikings tattos and one of a few towels we got at a Vikings/Packer game.

Anyway, little blast from the past for me and a chance for you all to learn one of my deep dark secrets that I never thought I would ever reveal on here: I was a Directioner.

Through the Years

My room has changed a lot through the years. A few days ago I shared the recent changes but I thought it would be fun to take a walk down memory lane!

Let me start by saying that my room was originally the master bedroom. We remodeled our house when I was about 5 and my parents turned our family room into a luxurious master suite so I got their old digs. Not too shabby for a 5-year-old!

But this has made my room hard to arrange. I like to shake things up in a big way every few years and when I reached the age when a double bed became appropriate there were really only two possible places for my bed: between 2 doorways on one wall or between two windows on the opposite wall. So until now, I was never really happy with the configuration.

I had all kinds of wallpaper/paint combinations. When I first moved into the room, we put up subtle butterfly wallpaper with a Barbie border. Oh, yeah. I was so cool in Kindergarten. Then I wanted a Tweety Bird border. Then I wanted blue walls. So I had blue walls with a psychedelic flower border. Then I got a froggy border. Then around my freshman year of high school I decided I was sophisticated and wanted more than one color on the wall. That’s how I ended up with my napoleon ice cream color palate.

This was obviously the blue walls/psychedelic flower era. Yes, that is lighted garland around my dresser. I was big into decorating my room for Christmas back then and I decided that I really liked the garland and left it up all year round. That pink thing on the mirror is a candy wrapper. I also kept candy wrappers I liked back then. This was the bed/dresser I just recently got rid of, but in this picture I think it was pretty new.

Wow, I don’t remember those hot pink sheets at all. Why.

Okay, I thought these pictures were SO cool when I put them up, but now it’s a little embarrassing. And those pictures above the lights on the left were extra special–they were “in the spotlight!” Oh, goodness. Thank God I grew out of this room.

Oh my goodness. This was right after we got the walls painted. That awful desk. It was awful. Things got very lost in there. We got that caricature on one of our many Disney World trips and even though I didn’t think it looked like me, I insisted on having it on my wall. This was the era where I would steal lamps from around the house for my room because I thought it would look more “grown-up.”

Okay, I just have to point out how weird I was. In the bottom of the picture, that’s one of those cheap white standup shelves that I turned on its side to serve as a “side table” for that awful beanbag chair I think I sat in 5 times. And those things that look like books under my desk are actually tons of Sims games. Actually Sims is open on my computer, too.

This was two years ago, but until a few weeks ago this is what my room looked like.  The ivy, like many other things, was awesome when I put it up but very quickly became annoying. And I just never took it down. The only thing that changed is that for the past year or so, I’ve had the brown side of my duvet cover up instead of the polka dots. This is another era I’m happy to leave behind.

Thank God we evolve.


I mentioned in my last post that I redid my bedroom. I did indeed. I was getting really fed up with my room because it felt like it belonged to a 14-year-old girl (probably because that’s about how old I was when I redid it last).

It all actually started when my mom spilled some of the liquid from a scented plug-in on my dresser and ruined the finish. I asked her to fix it and she insisted that it would just be easier to buy a new one since it was kind of a crappy dresser to begin with. Then I thought, while we’re at it we might as well buy a new bed frame, too. And if we’re getting a new bed frame, we might as well get a bigger mattress. And if we’re doing all of that and I’m bringing a ton of junk home from school, maybe I should think about a total overhaul.

So I started looking at headboards online and decided I really wanted a fabric one. I shared some options with my mom and she said it would be a hell of a lot cheaper to make our own. That intimidated me and the process kind of halted after that.

Until we found this place.

SO MUCH FABRIC.This place was INSANE. It was a huge warehouse filled from floor to ceiling with every kind of fabric you could imagine. They had a makeshift cutting table right in the middle and everyone had to cut their own fabric. It was overwhelming to say the least.

We must have been walking around for close to an hour before my mom found this fabric and, I’m not exaggerating, I literally screamed “I NEED THAT.” We had seen this print in a different color at a local craft store and I loved the print but didn’t think a dark teal would really fit with my pink walls…so I kind of freaked out when I saw this.


We brought it home and, of course, it was perfect. I started getting really excited about getting this done, but my mom had “better” things to do so the folded up fabric sadly sat on my dresser for a few months.

The day after I graduated, I sat my parents down and said “This is the week. We’re finishing my room this week.” And we actually did! I worked on the headboard Monday-Wednesday, ordered new bedding and lighting Thursday and we found my dresser and nightstand on Friday! Now, it still isn’t completely finished but all of the decisions have been made and orders have been placed. Now we’re just waiting for the final deliveries.

Here’s what it looks like right now.

Let me tell ‘ya, that headboard was not easy. I mean, if I ever do it again it’s going to seem simple. But it was so emotionally stressful. First of all, I had to decide on a shape and I was torn between the shape I really wanted (which I ended up with) and the shape that would have been easier to deal with (simple rectangle). Then I had to make a pattern that was absolutely perfect down to the last centimeter. Then it was deciding how many layers of batting to attach (which was also a bit clumsy). And finally figuring how to pull the fabric just right when putting in the final staples. We bought some nails to put around the perimeter but after all of that, I couldn’t care less about adding nails. It looked just fine the way it was! And throughout this whole process I had to deal with a mother who doesn’t know how to walk the line between coaching and saying “This is your project. You figure it out.”

Oh, and by the way, part of this process was bringing my bedroom set down to the guest room directly below my room and bringing that bed frame and mattress up to my room. That was a sweaty job. I slept very well that night!

The next thing that came was my duvet cover, which I was a little bit skeptical about. My mom adored it and it was returnable so I got it, but I was prepared to not like it. I was surprised when it came and I actually somewhat liked it. And now that’s been here a few weeks, I actually love it.

Then my dresser and nightstand came and I really started to fall in love with this room.

My mom was really surprised with the style I went with (“It’s very Mad Men!”) but she’s admitted that she really loves it now, too.

(Notice the pictures and “Live. Laugh. Love.” I mentioned in a previous post!)

And of course Pooh means a lot to me, so he needed to be front and center. I made those pictures that are leaning against the wall for my dorm this year and loved them so much that they had to be a part of this room. It’s just little squares of fun fabric in cheap frames but they add so much! (Yes, those are indeed my textbooks for my current classes. I didn’t even realize they were there…)

I was bothered by the empty space above my bed so after thinking about homemade options, we decided to just go to Ikea and get some wall stickers. I had these in my dorm at school this year and loved them so I knew what I was getting.

It was a lot of work, but I love love love this room again!