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Archive for "Life"

What Happened Last Week

Posted on March 25, 2018 by under Events, Home Ownership, Life.    


I walked over to City Hall last Friday to celebrate my friend Gavin’s retirement from WPD. They showed pictures of him from when he started his career in law enforcement 26 years ago. Many people came to wish Gavin well and the Police Chief said a few words before turning it over to Gavin to address the crowd.


I didn’t partake of the cake and punch because I wanted to get back to work but I wanted to be there for Gavin on behalf of all of our Leadership Wichita classmates. The walk to and from City Hall and the reception itself was a welcome break from my workday although it was super windy that day and I thought I would be blown away several times.

Incidentally, this was the same day that Wichita State was eliminated from the NCAA tournament. In case you hadn’t noticed, I was sporting my WSU colors that day. I also wore my new Rothy’s flats, which are my new favorite shoes for work. More on them next time because I plan to post a video review.


Saki and I took a super awesome selfie.


I think this was on Saturday morning because I look like I just woke up. Speaking of Saturday morning, Brian went outside to take pictures of house for reference for the house painters. We are paining the house next month but we are repainting it the exact same colors so we don’t have to hassle with too many HOA approvals. If you keep the same colors, they tend to leave you alone.

When he was outside, he hollered for me to come out. Apparently, our new lawn service company completed spring cleaning on the yard earlier in the week and we didn’t even notice.


Here are some pictures of the fabulous work they did.


They trimmed the fountain grass, removed all the dead and dried up parts of the yucca and these plants that line the path that I can never remember the name of, and put fresh mulch.


They also cleaned up around the day lilies, which are spreading like crazy. After our coffee chat today, I plan to pull the overgrown day lilies out.


They did the same thing on the other side. They also pulled the weeds from the side of the house and put down fresh mulch. I don’t know why we kept trying to do this stuff ourselves when other people can do a much better job than we can. Plus, it didn’t take up any of our time at all. It was done just like magic. We didn’t even know when they came to do it.

Brian and I agreed that they must have come during the week but neither of us noticed until Saturday morning. If they did complete the work on Saturday morning, that’s even more impressive because we didn’t hear anything at all.

The company is called Commercial Lawn Management (CLM) and so far we’ve been really happy with their service. I think we may hang on to them. The spring clean up they did usually takes up so much effort on our part, not just in the time to complete the work but also planning, and we always end up putting it off and putting off and then the yard looks like crap all summer long.

We highly recommend CLM. They do all sorts of stuff and offer free estimates so if you need a job done, be sure to contact them.

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The Best of 2017

Posted on January 30, 2018 by under Life, Relationship, Zumba.    

Every year I post highlights to reflect on everything that happened — good and bad. I usually post it at the very end of the year or right at the beginning of the new year. I’m a little bit late posting this one because our weekends have been jam-packed with stuff. It’s been difficult to find a few minutes to write about an entire year.

First, here are links to past annual recaps to get you caught up:

So what happened last year? So much! Probably too much to condense into a single update but I’m going to give it my best effort.

We started the year off strong with a Plank Challenge and we were very optimistic about blowing our goals out of the water. However, it didn’t take long for us to succumb to life and being busy and we were back to our lazy selves in no time.

I hosted my first Zumbathon┬« and we raised a good chunk of money for Big Brothers Big Sisters, a cause that is near and dear to me. All of the crazy fundraising we did during the “For Kids’ Sake” campaign paid off. I was the top fundraiser at our annual company “Bowl for Kids’ Sake” event.

Brian and I attended more events this year than we ever have and were even inducted into the Society of 1895. I couldn’t make that luncheon but Brian attended for the both of us. Here are some of the other events we had the privilege of attending last year:

We also discovered a winery just South of Wichita. Besides selling great wine, they also host an amazing outdoor concert series every summer.

The Keeper of the Plains statue that Brian helped design was finally installed in our atrium at work. And, it’s magnificent!

I celebrated my 15th service anniversary at work. I also switched teams at this time. I’m still in Customer Care but now part of the Business Solutions team.

Brian and I traveled to two places we’d never been. First to Alaska over Memorial weekend, where we went to visit Sheryll and her family. Then, later in the year, we celebrated my 40th birthday in the Bahamas. Both trips were memorable in their own way and we feel truly blessed that we had the opportunity to go.

We hosted a couple of fun parties at the house. The one over Fourth of July weekend resulted in Brian finally completing the installation of the automatic garage door opener for our third car garage. The second one was the first Zumba World Party party that I’ve had in a long time.

Besides installing a garage door opener, Brian also installed a Nest thermostat and some smart switches.

Brian and I completed a couple of drink tours: the Wicked Brew Tour and the Carlos O’Kelly’s Summer Drink Tour. The former got us these cool, limited edition shirts from Visit Wichita. The latter got us really cool hand-blown glassware.

Besides the #DanceForKids Zumbathon that I hosted at the beginning of the year, I did a ton of Zumba. We had more Zumba in the Square events than ever. There was Zumba at the Relay for Life event, where we danced from Friday night into Saturday morning. I added a new class to my Zumba teaching scheduled — 5:15 AM on Fridays. And then, of course, there’s the annual Zumba Instructor Convention (aka #ZINCON), where we spend four days of nonstop Zumba.

Speaking of Zumba, I finally made Zumba Wear 3 Star Insider! My friend Missy and I made it during the same quarter.

Other firsts include visiting local sunflower fields for the first time and playing in a ping pong tournament with some friends. I have to say 2017 is the year that I saw my ping pong game truly improve.

This was a banner year for me because it’s the year that I left my 30s behind. Supposedly 40 is the new 30 so I’m looking forward to what this new year will bring!

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12 Class Challenge

Posted on January 3, 2018 by under Life.    

Every year the Greater Wichita YMCA incentivizes people to exercise and stay healthy throughout the holidays by holding a 12 Class Challenge program. Basically, you sign up for $10 and you get a card that has 12 boxes. After participating in a group exercise class, you have the instructor initial (or sign) and date a box. Once you have completed all 12 space, you turn your completed card in to the front desk of your local YMCA to redeem your awesome, limited edition 12 Class Challenge shirt. It’s really a brilliant program and is a huge hit every year.

Here’s a vintage video I found on YouTube of local realtor Kathy Ambrose, who does a great job of explaining the how the 12 Class Challenge program works.

The sign up cost was only $5 back when this video was made. The cost this past holiday season was $10 but that didn’t matter. It’s still as popular as ever. My students get a huge kick out of participating and completing their cards.


They are so enthusiastic about this program that I actually had two students complete their cards about a week into the program. The challenge officially started the week of Thanksgiving and by December 2, they were both done.


The only downside of finishing too soon is that sometimes the shirts haven’t arrived yet so you have to hang on to your card for a bit until the shirts are available. I believe that the shirts are available now so if you completed your 12 Class Challenge card then head on over to your local YMCA branch and grab yourself a shirt.

You earned it!

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Back to Our Regularly Scheduled Programming

Posted on December 28, 2017 by under Life.    

Things that happened last month…


I had the opportunity to take project management training at Wichita State University from one of my favorite Rotarians.


We formed a team and attended sci-fi trivia night at Aero Plains. Our team name was Red Shirts. It gave us the perfect excuse to don our Star Trek costumes from a few years ago. We didn’t win but we held the top place for a couple of rounds and we had a ton of fun.


We spent a Saturday afternoon with some awesome people from my work helping Child Start set up for their annual Polar Express Literacy Event. This is our second year helping with the event.


I finally caved and let Brian replace our WattSaver thermostat with Nest. He took us off the program over a year ago but we kept the thermostat because it was useful.

Brian had been begging for a Nest thermostat for years but I wanted to support our thermostat program at work. Anyway, we both decided it was finally time. He’s supposed to blog about his new Nest so stay tuned for that post.

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Another Year, Another Birthday

Posted on November 5, 2017 by under Food and Drink, Life.    

Last month was a very festive month. We celebrated almost every single day. Then again, I guess that’s just kind of how we are. We love living life and celebrate every moment. Here are some of the things that happened leading up to our trip to Great Exuma, Bahamas.

Birthday Card from the Greater Wichita YMCA HR Team

First, there was our escape room adventure with Kate and Deanna. Remember how we tried to do it last month but couldn’t do it because Escapology changed their hours on me so they were closed on the day we went? Well, we finally made it happen. We did the Cuban Crisis room and we escaped!


We couldn’t have done it without Kate, though. She was whiz at the puzzles.

Carrabbas - Meatballs

We also hit all of our favorite restaurants during my birthday month.

P.F. Changs - Crab Wontons

We really shouldn’t have been eating out but your birthday month is a good excuse to fall off the wagon. Anyway, I won’t post all of the food pictures. I’ll just post one picture from each place and let you guys figure out where we went.

Bonefish - Crab Cakes and Bang Bang Shrimp

Besides our favorite restaurants, we also had the opportunity to try a new place we’d never dined at before when we met a couple of my Leadership Wichita classmates (Teresa and Jason) for lunch a couple of weeks ago. I will post all of these food pics because it was a first for all of us.

Okra, Anyone?

Fried Sweet Potatoes





We ate at the Rail at Union Station because Teresa wanted to try one of the restaurants in the area as she hadn’t tried any of them yet. I suggested the Rail since I’d already been to the Kitchen. I actually suggested Mumbai Rail, which confused the heck out of Teresa who got there first. Apparently, Mumbai Rail is no more and has been rebranded as the Rail Scratch Cocktails.

We were all very worried at first because there was no one else at the restaurant besides our group for lunch. You know how the really great places are always busy and the terrible places are dead? We were sort of thinking along those lines. But we were already there and it was too late to back out.

Anyway, the food was surprisingly fabulous. At least, my meal was very tasty and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The quality of the food was definitely not representative of the restaurants lack of patrons. I later found a news article (through my friend Alicia who told me that she thought the restaurant had closed for good) that said the restaurant would no longer be open for lunch. The article was written back in June. I’m guessing people still don’t know that they’re open for lunch.

Which was good for us because it meant great food and no wait. LOL. Probably not great business, though. I hope the restaurant survives because I really did enjoy our lunch. Of course, the great company had a lot to do with that but I really did like their food. I actually want to go back at some point.

This was on Thursday, October 26, final day before departure. We flew out of the Wichita airport very early the next day.

Anyway, I’m sure you’re really anxious to hear about our trip to the Bahamas. I’ve got a few other things that I need to catch up on and then I’ll be able to devote some attention to a full-fledged trip recap. I hoping to do that by the end of the week so check back soon.

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