One Trip Around the Sun

Took another trip around the sun. By that I mean I had another birthday and I’m another year older. However, maybe I’ll look at it as though I have gathered another year of wisdom, but I do have so very much more to learn.

But what did another year teach me? What happened? I was born May 27, 1981…for those doing the math, I’m 37. Age has never been something that bothered me, it was something that actually excites me. Now rewind with me to right before I turned 35…at the beginning of the month I had visions of a fun birthday party happening, probably in lakes country and all my friends would be there, it was 35, surely that’s a milestone celebration birthday, right?

The couple weeks leading up, there seemed to be a lot of things happening that were more negative and I really hadn’t planned much and it’s for the best I didn’t. Grandma passed three days before I was to turn 35, she had lived to be 91, what an amazing life, but no matter the age it’s always hard to lose a loved one. Had this sinking feeling, somehow, the funeral would more than likely land on my birthday, which my father asked if I’d be okay with and of course I was, it was a celebration of her life that takes all precedent over anything!

It was a day of prayers, stories, laughter and many tears.

Later that day my best of friends showed up to show their support and most of all their love. For that I’ll never be able to tell them what that meant or say thank you enough. They helped to make the best of such a day.

There are those that will be able to relate, after something like that, days like that are never ever really the same, at least not right away. There’s a different memory, one that can still bring a tear to your eye. That was last year, my birthday came and quite honestly I just wanted it to pass. God Bless my friends again making sure I celebrated even if my heart wasn’t completely in it.

Moving on to this year, I didn’t know what I wanted. The week started out like any other week, but I knew the day was coming and I really did not know how to feel, what to feel yet. A few had asked about the day, and one good friend I had even confined in, to explain why I wasn’t really even feeling it and they got it, they had gone through something similar before.

So the week drug on and I knew the long Memorial Day weekend was coming and I still really hadn’t planned a thing. Then came Thursday and I had my usual happy hour at Twist for work. Two of my best guy friends showed up and they started the kickoff of a birthday weekend, probably not realizing they were helping to turn things around.

That was followed by Friday with the companies new summer grill out and my co-workers surprised me with a cake that not only made me laugh so hard it moved me even a little more towards feeling excited for my birthday again. The cake which was a little, or a lot inappropriate, was the only thing I would expect to get from the two who picked it out and had the saying wrote on it!

The weekend continued to just keep getting better and better. My little brother showed up and I got to spend some good quality time with him having dinner, taking a walk downtown for ice cream and good brother sister bonding time.

Then follow that up with Saturday spending more time with friends in the sun with a birthday cookie cake, happy birthday being sung and feeling even more love.

The day of my birthday I was with one of my best friends who made sure there was coffee,, lilacs, food, drinks and dancing! Along with my other best girlfriend checking in to make sure I was okay and sending her best, knowing only two short years before what had been.

The day of my birthday I felt so much love, from family, friends, listeners and even strangers…my heart was bursting with gratitude and so much thanks it was humbling.

Monday continued to be eventful and was like an extension of my birthday as I spent more time with friends on the lake and just soaked up not just the rays but the moment. Move to today where I got to see yet two more friends to do dinner and pedicures and really wrap up what feels like many days of a birthday celebration, I reflect back and think how very blessed and fortunate I am.

This year was different and reminded me how special birthdays can be and how very loved I am. From the very bottom of my heart I thank each and everyone of you who took a moment to wish me a happy birthday, to show me you cared and to make this girl feel incredibly special. It may not seem like much to say or write happy birthday or more than few seconds or minutes to send that wish, but the truth is to anyone it means everything.

I got wishes of hoping it’s my best year yet, but really looking at it, every year is my best because God blessed me with another one. So here’s to another birthday, to another year around the sun and I hope yours is just as special ❤️ ☀️

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The National Anthem

I can not describe to you what it’s like to be asked to sing the National Anthem for any event, at least for me anyway, but I’ll try. It’s an honor, a genuine privilege and I am humbled to do so, but to sing our nations anthem, it’s also mixed with the feeling of being one of the most terrifying things I feel I ever do.

Think to all of the major sporting events where a professional singer has done the anthem and they have messed up, you have one, maybe a few in mind already. To me I think, I get it and my heart feels for them. If you haven’t got in front of a large crowd or even a small crowd to sing it before you don’t know how scary singing it can be.

It’s the song everyone knows. It’s the one song when sung at events is heard by everyone, every single note, word and especially any mistake or mistakes. No one wants to mess up the National Anthem, it’s our countries anthem so think of the pressure of making sure you don’t do one thing wrong.

Every time right before I get ready to sing I pray to God and remember that I’m doing this one for all of the men and women who have fought and who fight so diligently to give us the freedoms we have, with one being able to sing such a song. I sing it for them…I sing it for my friends and family who have fought. I sing it for those soldiers to come and those who protect our freedoms now.

Like I said it is an honor and a privilege to sing the song and I am humbled when I get to sing it. A special thank you to the Fargo Force who invite me back year after year and sometimes a few times a year. It’s not much but any little contribution I can give I will from the very bottom of my heart ❤️ https://girlintheredsparklyboots.files.wordpress.com/2018/04/img_6379.mov

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.

Be

“Our Father, Who art in Heaven

Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come 

Thy will be done on Earth as it is in 

Heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread and forgive 

Us our trespasses as we forgive those who 

trespass against us. Lead us not into 

Temptation but deliver us from evil. 

For thine is the kingdom. And the power 

And the glory, forever and ever. Amen.”

I don’t know about you but today many prayers were needed and even more should be said. We woke this morning to a tragic, massive shooting in Las Vegas. Tragedy had struck on our home land and worst of all it was by a fellow American. This has shaken us to the very core and it should. We are the “land of the free and the home of the brave”, but lately many of us have forgotten that. I refuse to point fingers at who is at fault because really we all are.

We preach about kindness, loving one another and peace but yet so many times do the opposite. We hide behind our screens and tear each other down when someone doesn’t agree with what we say. We are offended by anything and everything and some where in all our virtual ness and social media hype we lost touch with one another.

My plea: 

Don’t preach kindness…Be kind.

Don’t speak about love…show love, Be love.

Don’t be the problem…Be the solution.

Don’t hide behind your screen…look up, see who and what is around you and Be in the moment.

Be the good you want to see in this world. Be the change.

As we pray for Vegas…I extend that to say, pray for each other, pray for America, and pray for the world. 

💙God Bless America and God Bless You.❤️

The Good News

Growing up I remember dad always read the newspaper, watched the news or listened to the news and mom never did. She would rather ask us kids how our days were, how work had gone with dad and would talk on the phone with the neighbors about upcoming events, how they were and took in the good.

I couldn’t help but think at the time, as I would sometimes discuss the happenings of the world with my dad, why mom didn’t want to talk about it? One day I asked, her response was simple, she didn’t need to hear about all the bad that’s happening, she’d rather hear about the good. Thinking at the time that seems a little naive I think now, she had a point. 

Now a days you can’t even turn to your phone without being alerted on the next horrible or devastating news story. After awhile they start to take a toll on a person, on their heart…others appear to be numb to it, while others argue why they’re right and bully the next person as though they aren’t part of the problem, because face it in a way we are all a part of it whether we like it or not.

Believe it or not growing up I always found the news fascinating. The world of media amazed me and they were the first to let you know the big story. It’s part of why I got into radio to begin with. When something big happens, good or bad, I want to be one of the first to inform you. However, what I miss about journalism these days, is the integrity there once was.

When breaking a story, reporters had to have a lead and that lead had to be willing to share who they were and they weren’t just “some source” being quoted. Today “someone who knows someone, who knows someone said this is what happened” and that’s your story? Sounds more like to me we are all just reading or listening to a conversation that has been muddled because it’s like it was told through a game of telephone. What happened to giving the actual facts? 

So I have drawn the conclusion that I’ve become a little more like my mother, as in I don’t always watch the news or read what’s happening because the bad is only getting worse and the facts are becoming more scarce. Not that I can avoid it all, I still need to know what’s happening but for the most part…when I go reading or watching the news these days I search for the good one, because the good will always have the source and will always have the facts. 

But also, the good news are the stories we need a few more of because maybe just maybe if we saw or read about a little more good, another person would hear that and be inspired to do good too, and perhaps the chain will continue. 

I’m not saying we are going to change it all over night or ever change it all but shouldn’t we start somewhere? Even if it means starting out small? As the quote, not actually said by Ghandi but has been attributed to him, goes…”Be the change that you wish to see in the world”, but the only way to do that is to stand up and not just be good but do great. I might not have a whole plan worked out but you can be dang sure I’m going to do the best at being good I can each and every day and I hope you do as well! 

The Hopeless Romantic

Another exciting Friday night of watching, what has been dubbed, a chick flick. What can I say they’re my favorite to watch, even though they’re all very similar. Boy meets girl, girl is in love with another boy who she shouldn’t be with, then when she finally realizes that ones a jerk and falls for the other one she finds a way to believe the good guy is a jerk too. However, like any good chick flick she always ends up with the right guy! It’s how it’s supposed to work but does it work in real life?

Call me a hopeless romantic but I do believe in a sense yes life is a little like that. Unlike a movie though, life takes a little while to get to that happy ending. I feel I’ve been waiting on that happy ending for what feels like forever now. Thought I found it a couple times, once there was no doubt in my mind “this was it”, but some how life or I should say God had a different plan. 

I’ll be honest it’s frustrating sometimes, and if you’ve been in the situation you know you’ve caught yourself doubting at times if it’ll ever happen. I’ve even been told by friends and family members that maybe I’m too picky or maybe my standards are too high on what I want in a relationship, or maybe, just maybe, I know what I want and I haven’t met him yet or I have and we don’t know it yet. Listen to me don’t give up hope, actually never give up hope and never let anyone tell you, you should “settle”. 

Be patient. The plan hasn’t completely revealed itself yet, but I believe as should you and that’s what matters most. It was in the Christmas movie “Polar Express” that I heard the words “Seeing isn’t believing, believing is seeing” and I see now that time will help this hopeless romantic find her way, I just need to keep believing, I pray you do too.

Motivation I Found You

About a year and half ago I was running in a 5k when I felt a pain in my knee I had never felt before. At the time I was about 2 miles in so at least I was closer than not to the finish line but at that moment it really felt a long way. I powered through the pain walking letting it subside, some what, then pick up running and it would hurt worse. What seemed liked an eternity I finally crossed the finish line, and limped my way to the vehicle. When I got home and couldn’t even change out of my clothes without crying out in pain I was for sure I had torn something in my knee. But being a little stubborn I waited until Monday to go in to the walk-in Orthopedic and see what I’d have to do. Fearing the absolute worst I was surprised I had not torn a thing but I had flared up my IT Band in my knee. I was also told that it was something that could go away eventually, might come back one day or might continue to have some pain. Thankfully the pain went away but after that I was a little timid to jump back into running so I started slacking at it. 

Cardio had been something I’d been doing for years when all of a sudden I had the fear of the pain coming back holding me back. My strength training increased but my motivation to run had some what disappeared. 

Recently I told myself I really need to start training again for I want to do the Go Far Challenge again at the Fargo Marathon and run the 5k and the 10k. But for some reason I lacked the motivation I once had, that was until recently.

Last week I went into my gym, Anytime Fitness, and found myself getting one of their new heart rate monitors. Who knew such a little object could be the exact motivation I needed! First off I had a little fun with the staff at the 45th Street Anytime Fitness location figuring out my nickname…hey if you’re going to do it might as well have some fun so in the end it was decided and so you know, when you see “Big Pimpin Zee” up on the screen at the gym, that’s me! 

However, I digress, back to the point, so Thursday after I got it I went into the gym for the first time in a long time to just get on the treadmill. You see the treadmill and I have a long history of not always getting along so I’ll often use it for a bit then jump on the elliptical or AMT machine to finish my cardio but surprisingly not this time. 

I talked with the manager in the South Moorhead location who excitedly told me I’d be blown away with how much it will get me to push myself. You see the idea is you see where your heart rate is during your workout and try to reach the percentage of where the color on the TV screen in front of you is orange. My plan was run ten minutes and then move onto the next thing. Imagine my surprise when I looked up and realized I was already a half hour in! Even before my IT Band flared up I barely was on the treadmill. I had never been that excited about what I had done on the treadmill in my life. Not only that after my workout was completed an email was sent to give me a summary of my workout, how many calories I had burned and it gave me points. 


This new little heart rate monitor is a workout game changer for me and I don’t say that lightly at all. It has inspired me to get in three runs already since I got it last Wednesday and I’m already planning my next workout with it for tomorrow. 

Finding that inspiration, finding that motivation for anything in life is so important and sometimes it comes at just the right moment. The heart rate monitor for me could not have come at a more perfect moment. My gym always surprises me and continuously find ways that inspire me and keeps me going. They are my gym family and I love them for helping to always keep me going no matter what! 

If you feel you’re in a slump of any kind and in any aspect of your life, it might be time to ask those around you for that little push. You might find that sometimes it’s the little things, like the heart rate monitor, that will give you the drive once again to go after your goals. 

This is the year to believe, to believe anything can happen. Make it your year I know it’s my plan to make it mine, now go out there…make it happen and believe! I know “Big Pimpin Zee” believes 😉