Midweek! (Is it Friday, yet?)

My awesome Alice cape. It helped make monday not as manic!

The sky has been beautiful each night lately!

And weigh in on Tuesday was finally good news. Back at goal weight!

A Jimmy Johns celebration!

And the PE challenge for water week at school was amusing today!

Life is good. Busy, but good. I also have an amazing husband who not only grilled amazing kabobs but also did the dishes. I am a blessed girl!



Exhaustion and other Musings

Hello to you all from my new iPad keyboard. Who said these keyboards are any easier than the one on the touch screen of the iPad? It is like typing on a midget keyboard. Silly.

This week has been crazy busy. Work is good, just insanely busy and chaotic. We really have been flying by the seat of our pants adjusting and planning a new program and it has been stressful and frustrating at times, but it is completely worth it! The kids are actually learning a lot and they are producing some good projects. I like it and it is worth the sacrifice of sleep to get things rolling! Today, I was in charge of two things so last night I was up late trying to get things organized and ready for the teachers to be prepared. Even with all the time I spent, there was still mass confusion and frustration, but hey it's over and we survived. I guess that is progress. And the next time we do this, it will be much better, right? Right! The theme that all of their classes are working on is water and really it is pretty dang cool for me to be learning new things about water. I am very grateful for clean drinking water and the abundance that we have here in this country! So lucky and blessed are we!

Well, that is about all I can muster right now. Cheers!


Ramblings From the Couch.

Whew. This week flew by and has exhausted me completely. It has been a crazy nuts beginning to the school year.

For ten years, I have been working at an "alternative" high school. Notice the quotations surrounding alternative? Yeah, we haven't been a whole lot different than our cohorts at the other high schools in our district. Sure, we may give kids a smaller class size, may water down the curriculum and give students a little more extra work time, but we have never truly been alternative.

This year, with amazing guidance down an unknown road, with a caring and wise principal at the helm(and no, she doesn't read this blog!), we are creating a whole new school. When I talked about it with one of my classes today, I got goosebumps. We have made it possible to gain twelve credits rather than the seven of the past. We also have changed our schedule from a full five day schedule to a four day core class and a half day special Friday schedule. We really have no clue how Fridays are going to look but we are committed to making a program that helps students do better in their core classes as well as giving them an opportunity to gain more credit with more course offerings.

Change is hard and I am very impressed with how little my co-workers are complaining and how much we are getting accomplished. We have put in long hours and have been flying by the seats of our pants while creating and executing a new orientation program(which over two weeks will give students .5 elective credits). We literally have been meeting after school to plan the next day. Our administrators have probably not slept since last weekend. They are rockstars!

It has been many years since I have been this excited about the beginning of school and I am pretty sure I've never been this tired after the first week.

Here is to a sleep filled weekend and to endless possibilities for the new school year!



Another Wedding

This summer has been the summer of weddings. First, Reuben's niece, then ours, and today was my brother's from another mother. It was wonderful. I am so happy for Caleb and Lexi. It was well worth missing a bit of work to witness their ceremony! It was a good reminder to me of what I need to be doing as a wife!

Here is the cute couple:

This is a funny from today. Josh, Caleb's little brother, is a wedding crasher. He really does show up for random people's receptions, will eat their food and sign their guestbooks. He even will get in their pictures like he did today during a pause in our photo ops.

He's the silly kid with the serious look, white shirt and yellow tie. Josh keeps us all in laughs.

Before the reception, I met Morgan and Sarah at McDonalds. It was a nice way for the kids to play and us to visit. Here is an odd pic of Grimace. Can you see anything disturbing in it?

Those waders just aren't right.

Did you know that Morgan just had a baby a few days ago? Well, she did and Miriam is gorgeous.

This is my favorite picture:

And my second favorite(Henry, Morgan's oldest, took it. He is pretty proud of how he got both me and his sister in the pic):

She is sweet, isn't she?

So, as hard as it was to leave Wisconsin, these great things made it worth it!

This Elf in Josh's window was a birthday present I picked out for him with the help of both Reuben and Spencer. It made me real happy:

Spencer was very proud of our present's popularity! He's also in the pic. Love that kid.

Here are a few last pics from my time at home:

Mom, dad and pasties!

Friends with their candy bracelets. (Marla, Tricia, Kim @ girl's night in Rhinelaner.)

Wisconsin River @Hodag Park

Cheese curds

Vegetable car races in Eagle River Fair.


Favorite flowers

Silly Jenna @softball game. This is her smelly foot dance.

So fun to play softball and be surrounded by family and friends. I am truly blessed!



My mother loves me so much that she flew me to be with her for my last week of summer. She has mommy ESP and on a day I was feeling a bit homesick wrote me this text: "So do you want to fly home?"

My husband was nice enough to let me come even though he wasn't very excited for me to leave. He's very good to me! (and it's true love for me to leave him the iPad so we can video chat while I'm here!)

I was excited to surprise my softball team on Tuesday. I had to keep my coming a secret, which for this Facebook addict was hard, seeing I found a way to also take my nephews to a Milwaukee Brewers game. It was hard to not check into Miller Park on Monday night, especially because they won!

We also won our softball game on Tuesday. I wish I had pictures of the surprise on the ladies' faces as they each arrived and were shocked to see me. My friend Marla was most shocked because the day before I had texted her and said that I didn't have enough time to get back to Wisconsin. I'm so mean but a good surprise maker!

I had big plans to go to Wausau for a sleep over last night with Marla like old times, but my stomach had other plans. I was sick the past two days with some sort of stomach bug. I still feel pretty dang worn out but I'm glad I'm not spending a lot of my time in the bathroom! Last night it was nice to watch a movie with my mom. We even rigged up two TVs so we could watch the Packer preseason game at the same time!

Tonight the girls will head up here to Rhinelander for a game night. Hopefully, I will be a little more awake by then. I am not a nap taker but have been the past few days!

My seester is awesome too because she arranged for her kid to pick me up at the airport, had a henna tatoo party for me, and drove me up to Wausau so I could play softball. I am a spoiled brat!


Always See Ya Later, Never Goodbye!

Reuben's sister, Liz, and her son Cade, have been visiting from Arizona for the past couple of weeks. We have done lots of things with these two and it was a little hard to say see ya later, tonight.

Liz and I have a lot in common and she reminds me of one of my dearest friends. Too bad she has to live in bloody hot Arizona! We would have a blast is we lived in the same city.

Last night, after a fabulous dinner date at The Smoking Apple, to celebrate the last adventure with Liz, we headed to Sundance Ski Resort for a lift ride(they do this once a month during the full moon). It was a great experience, even though this wuss was a little scared about getting on and off the lift!

Here are some pics:


Sometimes You Just Live and Don't blog!

Well. Where has Alice been? She has been captivated by the Olympics and out having adventures.

My friend, Sharri, have gone hiking a few times in the past few weeks. She is a rockstar and one of y favorite co-workers. Above she is at Staurt Falls.

After the hike, we went to Cascade Springs. It was way cool and well worth the little drive!

Last Saturday, Reuben and I joined his sister Liz and her son for some amazing fishing adventures. Tibble Fork is a great place to fish, if you are Liz, and proved to be entertaining with it's vast amount of mud. Liz was up to her waist at one point. I am kinda glad I didn't follow her and I can still hear the sound the mud made as she rescued her shoe from it! Things like that make for great memories, no?

Reuben fly fishing @Tibble Fork

Liz the pro fisher.

This week has been full of adventure too. Monday The Ficklin clan got together in Provo Canyon for a family night and tasty picnic.

Here are My father-in-law, brother-in-law, and cute husband
The week flew by and Tuesday-Wednesday kinda escape me.
Thursday was full of Geocaching. Liz and my friend Jane love this activity and I am catching the fun! It's like a treasure hunt! I love it. We took my friend Kari and two of her kiddos and they also loved it!

Jane, Liz and I later went about a half hour south of here and found a few more caches. It was gorgeous in Diamond Fork Canyon.

And I even got to climb around!

It was a blast!
Today, Jane and I hiked a bit and then it was off to celebrate Spencer's birthday. I cannot believe he is five already. I remember driving trough Kansas and holding tiny newborn Spencer-Man. It makes this "aunt" feel old.
These are the only pictures I took at his slip and slide "Surf's Up" party, which makes me a little sad. I must have been tired or something. You can read all about the party at ingfamily.blogspot.com

Ezra watching basketball. This boy loves his basketball!

Caleb wearing one of the Batman masks I got for the boys.

Josh as Thor.