Remember the Memories

Can you do something for me? Right at this moment, think about your earliest memory. Where were you? How old were you? What were you doing?

Those are some big questions, but they’re important and I will explain more as I go, I promise!

For me, my first memory dates back to what would have been the start of 1983, I was close to two years old. My family had taken a road trip to California to visit family on my moms side. I actually don’t remember much of anything of the trip, I was way too young. But it’s amazing what the brain can remember.

A few years later, at the age of about ten I was having the same nightmare for about the umpteenth time. Honestly, I couldn’t tell how many times I had woken from this exact same nightmare screaming for my parents but it was a lot. Then Mom asked “Megan what is your dream about?” And I explained to her how we were as a family on what was like a water trolley and Frankenstein, or to be technical – Frankenstein’s monster was on there with us and he walks right up to me and PICKS ME UP and I cry and scream and am down right terrified in my dream. I didn’t expect what happened next to happen…

Mom is looking at me, when I finish telling her my dream, completely dumbfounded, almost in disbelief. That’s when she tells me, that’s not a dream, that is a memory, that actually happened.

Memories have a way of finding us when we least expect it at times and sometimes they are a surprise. But others we treasure them so close to our heart we pray we never forget the moment,

That’s the memory I want from this weekend. Rewind just a tish to Easter. I was back home for Easter and spending time with mom and dad and a couple other relatives when Mom goes to my dad, ” Oh ask Megan”! Which words like that can be either exciting or cringe worthy. This time they were good. Dad had bought tickets to the Ducks Unlimited banquet for the Mahnomen chapter and asked me to go with him since Mom was gone for work that weekend.

There was no hesitation in saying yes, because when the good Lord presents precious one on one time with either of your parents, you take it.

There had been a slight hesitation whether we would go, but come that Saturday, dad seemed pretty excited and I was too!

We got to the Shooting Star Casino in Mahnomen for the event and got checked in. We ran into some people and friends that we had not seen for awhile, made friends with the couple at our table and looked to see what was up for the silent and live auction.

It didn’t take me much time to notice that one of the items up for the live auction was a framed and matted picture of Stefon Diggs crossing into the end zone for the winning touchdown against the New Orleans Saints during the playoffs. The touchdown will forever be known as the ” Minneapolis Miracle”. It’s a moment that any true Vikings fan will never forget. You’ll remember right where you were and who you were with at that moment. It was that special of a TD. It’ll go down in history as one of the best playoff finishes.

But I digress. So here was a picture of that moment and it was the only thing I wanted and I was determined to get it some how, some way. Fast forward to the part of the night with the Live Auction and where this particular picture was being auctioned off.

I remember right before the bidding began my dad had turned to me and said, “do you know where your number is at for this item”? I did. I had a set amount I was willing to spend. The bidding began and I began a bidding war with another girl. We went back and forth until we reached the amount I was willing to spend. I raised it one more time, going over my limit, but she was ready to go over that and that was it, my hopes of winning the print had been dashed. I looked around the room to see if anyone else was interested in bidding and I stopped listening. She had won it that’s all I knew.

Then something completely unexpected to me happened. The auctioneer was saying going once, going twice, sold…and then pointed in the direction of my table. At this point I was confused I had not bid again. The lady next to me goes, “oh you really didn’t see” as the picture is being walked to our table, “your father bid on it”. Yes, once again my father showed me how incredibly much he cares, he had WON me that print. I was about in tears and in disbelief.

After the weekend as I was driving home and thinking about what a weekend it had been I was thinking about memories. This particular weekend was definitely one that would go down in the books and made me ponder on how important memories are.

Memories versus things; memories should win every time. We so often these days forget to live in the moment and be with those surrounding us that we miss out on the moment, we miss out on the memory.

Think back to when you were younger. What do you remember? More often than not, you’re going to remember that moment that was special. That moment where your felt alive. A moment where someone made you feel loved. Those are the precious things we hold on to with not just remembrance but with our hearts.

Are you making memories? Not just with yourself but with your loved ones? Those are the things we should be making more of, rather than of complaints, disgust and hate.

We aren’t promised tomorrow, so while you can, make more memories with those that mean something in your life, with those you love. I can almost guarantee that it’s those times they’ll hold on to and that they’ll share in the end because it meant something to them and it was a time where they felt special and felt loved.

That moment with my dad was one of those moments. We’ve had quite a few memories/moments through my life and this was another one that I can always hold on to and I always will.

Cherish those you love – your family and friends, and make memories while you can. Promise you, you won’t regret it.

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Here’s To New Adventures

I’ll never forget the day I graduated high school and reading the infamous Dr. Suess book “Oh The Places You Will Go”. It was a gift I had received back then and have often gone back to read during different times in my life when new adventures had presented themselves. Today I was reminded of the feelings that come with the start of a new adventure.

Imagine my surprise when I heard from one of my favorites at my favorite gym Anytime Fitness saying “We need to meet before Wednesday because I have news”. It just so happened I had just changed into my workout clothes right before she sent it so I said I was already on my way I’ll see you soon. Naturally, when you get a text like that all sort of things go through your mind. Keep in mind, however, for this particular situation, it could be a number of things for this person had become someone very special, like the little sister I never had and we shared a lot so it literally. could. be. anything. A sneaking suspicion though had me believe, she was off on a new adventure. Little did I know how right I was.

Let me take it even a step further to how I know little Miss Meghan of who I write about. She’s a spitfire of a woman who I met when she was a cheerleader for NDSU and was coached by another dear friend of mine. From the moment I met her I knew she had to be cool, I mean one, her name was Meghan and two, she had dark hair like me, so that had to be saying something, but it was her similar attitude and free spirit to mine that made our friendship instantaneous. From there I got to know her in other areas of our lives including with the latest when she came to work at Anytime Fitness and even more of a friendship blossomed.

Today Meghan let me know that she had a beyond exciting opportunity presented to her over the weekend and everything escalated quickly and she’s leaving THIS Wednesday already. Then I saw the emotions I remembered having the first time I ever left this area…excitement, nervousness and sadness all wrapped into one. It’s a GIANT step to move away from a place you know as home. It’s an even scarier step when it’s hundreds or even thousands of miles away from the ones you love dearly, your friends, your family, your everything.

But let me tell you this, the adventure you begin when you do step out on your own for the first time, is worth every obstacle that might come your way. Everything we do is for a reason, each path we take has it’s purpose. Had I not moved to Iowa at one point during my life, I wouldn’t be where I am right now, and frankly I love my life and where I am at right now, and I would not have made nearly half the friendships that I hold so dearly to this day, Meghan included.

Trust that the move you make is the right one for you even if it seems scary, because at the end of the day, you always have your loved ones when you need them and you can ALWAYS go back home. But go enjoy the adventure that awaits you while you can, because when  the best opportunity to move to Los Angeles, Hawaii, Reno, Nashville or wherever life may take you, presents itself, you take it without thinking twice and don’t look back, move forward.

This new adventure awaits you and may God bless you every step of the way. But know that “True friends are never apart. Maybe in distance but never in heart.”

Chasing the Aurora

The other night I was in my pj’s, contacts out, face washed, teeth brushed and about to hop into bed when I saw something pop up on my phone saying that the Northern Lights were out and about in the Red River Valley tonight. It had been awhile since I had seen the Aurora Borealis that I didn’t hesitate about going on a little adventure to find them. Threw on my sweats, a warm coat, boots, hat and gloves and was out the door faster than you could say Northern Lights.

A little part of my inner kid had awakened and I just knew I had to find them! My love for the Aurora Borealis started when I was around the age of five. I remembered it being the dead of winter and bitterly cold, much like it is right now, and my mom gently waking me up and saying “Megan, dress warm I want you to see something.” I got dressed quickly and mom and I went outside where she showed me something in the sky. I remember it being very bright, green and mesmerizing. I asked my mom what is that? That’s when I discovered for the first time the Northern Lights or what I prefer to call them the Aurora Borealis. It’s a memory I’ll forever hold dear in my heart and through the years, I find myself chasing the breathtaking sky lights.

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Aurora Borealis From http://www.ripten.com/2012/01/27/the-aurora-borealis-shines-over-skyrim-and-earth/ Taken in Norway, Europe’s Skyrim

One time it was during a break from college I was heading home and it was later than I had planned. But there was a reason I ran late, it was on my drive that I looked up and saw the Aurora Borealis looking even more visual than usual. I pulled over on a side road as fast as I could and took in the natural beauty that was. They were more active than I had ever seen them it was like they were swirling from the very top of the world and down along the northern hemispere. I had never seen the Northern Lights dance the way they did that night. Twirling and dancing up and down all over the sky, I was frozen watching in that moment the Aurora Borealis like I had never seen them before. Getting home later and mom a little worried I explained to her how I couldn’t leave, and she understood as she realized she had passed on her love of the Northern Lights to me.

Through the years I’d run into my friend here and there but like I said earlier it had been awhile and I was ready to see her again! One thing about living in the city now versus the country when I was growing up, a person has to go a little farther to try and see the Northern Lights and away from the lights of the city. On a mission I headed out towards Minnesota and quickly realized I had without thinking started heading home. It was after eleven and I knew that 5:15am would come soon enough. Had it not been a Tuesday during the week I would have kept on driving.

It sounds strange but I could feel it that my long lost friend was out there but that night she was just a little out of my reach. I turned around and went home but not after staring at the stars for a brief moment. I don’t know what it is about that big sky up there, but it has always fascinated me, maybe because it lets me forget about other things for awhile and feel at peace, even if it’s for a moment. Think I needed that the other night to just have a me moment. Pretty sure we each have a little quirky thing we do to take time for ourselves and for me my favorite will always be Chasing the lady Aurora.

This is Me

Champagne was poured, party favors handed out, the excitement in the room was contagious, everyone shouting down 5-4-3-2— HAPPY NEW YEAR!  It was officially 2014 and not surprisingly my date had not made it in time for that infamous New Year kiss as a matter of fact, he hadn’t made it all and I decided this year was going to be different.  This year was going to be about me and change.

Change had been a bit of a theme in the last few months but with a New Year brought new opportunities, new enthusiasm and ultimately new hope.  Never had really thought about New Year’s resolutions before but this year I was on a mission, I had goals and I figured it was time to write them down before I got caught up in too much champagne and forgot exactly what 2014 was going to be for me.

2014 New Year’s Resolutions:

1.  Volunteer more – ‘Treat people the way you want to be treated’ has always been my belief. Being blessed with many wonderful things in my life, it was time to pass a little of that on to those way more deserving than me.

2.  Start a blog – Ever since I was young I enjoyed writing and telling stories, this couldn’t be more perfect for me.  Diaries, journals, letters, stories, papers for school, speeches…I loved it all.  Anytime I could put my words down in hopes that someone, somewhere, some day might read or hear them, be touched by them, laugh at them or be inspired by them I wrote.  Now here’s the perfect avenue for all FullSizeRender1 (3)of that, why wasn’t I jumping on this opportunity earlier?

3. Take more moments to look at your surroundings – Staring at the stars is one of my all time favorite things to do and I had gotten away from it.  I think we all get away from our favorite things now and again.  Nature is surrounding us each and everyday, look beyond the surface and see the beauty it beholds, you’ll be amazed and life will be simple again even if it’s just for that moment.

4. BELIEVE – is what I tell myself everyday, no matter what challenges life throws at me, because there’s a reason for it and you’ll get through it if you just believe.

After a while the list got pretty long and I realized I hadn’t just created 2014 New Year’s Resolutions, I had created what some may call a bucket list, I like to call it life adventures that I want to experience.  Some resolutions or adventures may take a little longer than others, but I have my list to remind me of what I want to do for me.

As I headed back to the party to join my friends I was ready for what life was going to bring my way in 2014 and years to come and I was ready to do it in my new Red Sparkly Boots!