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Saturday, December 31, 2016

One Word 2017

Another year is just around the corner. For me that means picking my One Word to help me along the way. I've been doing this since 2011 and find it inspiring to have one word each year.

This year my word is DETERMINED!

Determined To:
D: Deliver wholesome food for my family
E:  Educate my children
T:  Train for my 1st ever half marathon
E:  Enjoy the little things
R:  Remember to keep it simple!
M: Manage my household the way God designed
I:    Ignore negative thoughts
N:  Not overcomplicate my life
E:  Embrace a stronger fitness program to strengthen my body
D:  Design new things for myself and family (quilt a blanket & make earrings)

Determined to:

  • Train and complete a half marathon
  • To participate and complete half of the 2,017 miles in the 2017 Running Challenge
  • To get back to eating nothing but whole foods and eliminating processed food for good
  • Making healthy homemade meals like I did in the past
  • To lose the last of my weight and to get physically fit using weights and the running challenge
  • To continue to help out in the homeschooling community with the bowling league and the graduation ceremony and to continue facilitating my monthly book club
  • To enjoy as much time as I can with my children as they are almost all grown (2nd child will be 18 in March)
  • To live, laugh and enjoy the simple things
  • To continue to live simply and not over complicate my schedule, house or life
  • To actually read 52 Books in 52 Weeks this year (Get back to the love of reading)
  • To stay organized and to help with my children's homeschool journey (my 2nd graduates in May with one more 3 yrs more to go)
These are just a few things that have come to my head while typing this post. I am sure this list will grow as the year gets started.

Do you have One Word? It's never to late to start.... You can check out what this is all about and join in at:

Friday, December 30, 2016

I'm In! 2017 Miles

Last year, I saw a running challenge to run 2,016 miles in one year. Unfortunately I didn't see it before the year started so didn't sign up. This year I am in! With it being 2017 in a couple days, the total miles to complete is 2,017 miles.. 5.5 miles a day for 365 days if you go solo. I was going to do that if I couldn't find someone to join me as a team. It definitely would of been a challenge but I would work hard!

I did find someone to join me as a team. Two actually. They are local friends. One is a runner like me and the other an avid walker. For me I would love to divide it up for me to do half and the other two divide the other half between the two of them. I want to give myself the best challenge possible without making it too easy. If divided equally by 3 it would only be 1.8 miles a day which I easily do so it wouldn't be anything harder than my normal routine. I want this to be a physical challenge but not to the point where my body can't handle it and I know 5.5 miles a day without rest would not be doable for me.

 My personal challenge is half of the miles at 1,009 to complete this year.. 2.75 miles a day or 19.25 miles a week. VERY DOABLE! I want to take this year to actually train for a half marathon and actually do it. I've trained in the past for it, went out to do a 10K and then stopped training. Got myself up to 9 mile runs.

I'm not getting any younger, will be 43 in 2017 so now is the time to train and complete! Time isn't my issue, completing it is what I want to do. This year I completed my second 10K so now just need to work myself up to the 13.1 miles needed to complete the half. We have two locally each year. One in May which is the same race I did my 10K in called Buffalo Jump 10K/Half. They also have a half with it and then we have another one in September called Kickin' Assphault Half. 

I am sure that the September one would be easier on me since it's on the trail here in town with little ups and downs, BUT it's 9 months from now. I need to focus and stay "Determined". The Buffalo Jump run has a really nice hill to climb to get up by the jump but the second half is all downhill.... 

I want to complete this challenge with the half marathon as an extra bonus! I am looking to complete the half in May giving me a little over 16 weeks to prepare. The best part, while training I get to add up my miles for this Run the Year Challenge!!

Anyone out there looking to get physically fit in 2017? Gather a couple friends and sign yourself up. Get walking or running on January 1st. You can walk, run or use the elliptical to add up your daily miles..

I am already registered for Run The Year 2,017 Miles in 2017 Challenge and you should too! Use this code for $5 off but hurry because it expires in 48 hours! 1/1/2017
Follow the link below to register: Use Promo Code: HHBPZ1

Run The Year 2,017 Miles in 2017 Challenge
Awesome Medal you can order to show off all your hard work!

Each month there is a monthly challenge with Kara Goucher... Everyone can participate in as many or as few as you'd like!

Let's make 2017 the best we can for our mind, body and soul!! We can do it!

December Memories

December has been very eventful this year. We started out by having a Christmas party here at the house. Inviting our friends over for a potluck and an evening filled with games and laughter.

Love having a photo booth where we can create fun memories with those that attend.

After dinner we had some fun playing games..  Making reindeer antlers, guessing what's in the stocking, building a garage for Santa's reindeer, picking up candy canes with a candy cane and an ornament exchange..
A few days after our Christmas party my youngest turned 15. He wanted a Zelda cake to ring in his birthday celebration. Had 3 friends over to hang out and ate some yummy cake that I made for him.

Made a gingerbread house...

My Air Force daughter arrived from Utah to celebrate Christmas and the New Year. My son being silly in my Let it Snow hat since it snowed on Christmas Day to give us a true white Christmas.. We also decorated Ugly Sweater cookies. Two batches. One batch for my monthly book club since we were discussing The Christmas Sweater by Glenn Beck. We then decorated another batch for the family...

We had a fabulous Christmas, celebrating with the ones we love, enjoying a duck dinner and hanging with our cute puppy, Rosie...

Hope you all had a Merry Christmas and that you and your family was truly blessed during this Season of our Lord Jesus Christ's birth..

November Memories

In November my hubby and I celebrated our 19th wedding anniversary. Since our kiddos are now older teens and one is an adult it was time to get away to celebrate. I've had my eye on staying at the Grand Union Hotel in Fort Benton, MT.

We wanted to go all out since we are just one year away from our 20th.. Woohoo! We got the largest room in the hotel.. the Ladies Parlor with a claw tub and overlooks the balcony and the Missouri River. We started our weekend out by fishing on the Missouri, each catching two fish and then checking into the hotel for a romantic dinner in the hotel restaurant.

I was a bit sad that the fort and other museums in town were closed for the season. Wanted to take it all in as a packaged deal.. We will have to return in the Spring to see all of those. Really happy that we were able to enjoy the hotel.

We even received a personal tour of the hotel along with a history lesson about the building. It was awesome! Love Montana history! I would highly recommend if you are in Central Montana to come and stay a night at the Grand Union Hotel.. Especially for the historian in you!!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

A Love Transformed by Tracie Peterson

Cover Art

A Love Transformed
by Tracie Peterson

Sapphire Bride Series #3

About this Book:

Clara lacks for nothing in her lavish New York mansion--except love.
When her husband, Adolph, dies suddenly, Clara Vesper is stunned. Not grief-stricken, as their marriage had never been a love match, but staggered by what might become of her and her children. For years she designed the sapphire jewelry that made her husband's company a fortune, but she has little money in her own name and soon discovers that she has inherited nothing. Fearing for the welfare of her two small children, she decides to take them to her aunt and uncle's ranch in Montana, the only place she has ever been happy.

But much has changed since she last visited the Montana ranch, both for Clara and for those she was forced to leave behind. And when dangerous secrets from her late husband's past threaten everyone she loves, Clara must fight to remain where she can fulfill her dreams.

My Thoughts on This Book:

This is Book 3 in the Sapphire Bride series and Tracie didn't skimp at all finishing up this series. Each could easily be read as a stand alone with the common ground is the Yogo sapphires and the backdrop of Montana.

Clara is living in a loveless marriage on the East Coast with her twin children. Knowing her love belonged to her child hood sweetheart Curtis back in Montana with her Aunt and Uncle on their sheep farm. Clara spent her Summer's there helping out on the farm as a child until her mother wanted her to be married into wealth and status regardless if love was a factor.

Tragedy strikes, killing her husband so Clara returns to Montana to start over. BUT can she? Will her past come back to her and force her to leave the love she always wanted? Will lies and betrayal force her to return to a loveless marriage or can she finally find peace and marry for love?

About the Author:

Tracie Peterson

Tracie Peterson is the bestselling, award-winning author of more than 100 novels. Tracie also teaches writing workshops at a variety of conferences on subjects such as inspirational romance and historical research. She and her family live in Montana. Learn more at

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given...

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Christmas Weight Loss Challenge

End of October I decided to take back control of my weight and get back to what I weighed last December which was 128lbs. After gaining 17 pounds after the New Year over the course of several months I knew I didn't want to stay where I ended up. I joined a local weight loss challenge to get motivated and to stay accountable with peers that were going through the same thing. The challenge officially ended the Monday before Thanksgiving with an ending result of 137 pounds.

 photo Turkey Drop Challenge Day 1 Collage_zpsyguuxzpc.png
This is me on Day one of losing weight back on 10/26/2016.. Weighing at 145lbs

I started up a new challenge with the same group of ladies to get us through the Christmas Holiday Season. This officially started on November 30th. I wanted to post today at my 10 pound down mark of 135 lbs. I feel full of energy and absolutely love to see myself in the mirror again. I am now looking to get a whole new wardrobe thanks to my new found obsession of LuLaRoe clothing as you can see in my photo I took today..

Taken on 12/6/2015 weighing at 135 lbs

I am not done and haven't reached my final goal yet but I am on my way and extremely happy with the results this far. I am short.. Standing at only 5' 2" so I have to be careful with my weight since a little looks like a lot. My ultimate goal is get down to 120 lbs so 15 to go but right now my next set goal is 130lbs.. One pound at a time, one day at a time and one choice at a time.. That's all you can do!!

Are you trying to lose weight? I'd love to hear from you and encourage you along your journey to a better, healthier you!!

Monday, December 5, 2016

No Other Will Do by Karen Witemeyer

Cover Art

No Other Will Do
by Karen Witemeyer

A Ladies of Harper Station Novel
She Trusts Him for the Job,
But Can She Trust Him With Her Heart?
Men are optional. That was the credo Emma Chandler's suffragette aunts taught her and why she established Harper's Station, a women's colony that offers a fresh start to females in need. But when a dangerous and shadowy assailant tries repeatedly to drive the women out, Emma is forced to admit they might need a man after all. One who can fight. And there is only one man she trusts enough to ask.

Malachi Shaw has finally earned the respect he's always craved by becoming an explosives expert for the railroad. Yet when Emma's telegram arrives, he rushes back to Texas to repay the girl who once saved his life. Only she's not a girl any longer. She's a woman with a mind of her own and a smile that makes a man imagine a future he doesn't deserve.

As the danger intensifies, Emma, Mal, and the ladies of Harper's Station must choose safety or whether to risk everything to fight for their future.

My Thoughts on this Book:

Karen has yet to disappoint me in her storytelling. I've read all of her books and couldn't wait to get my hands on her newest release "No Other Will Do". This novel starts in the year 1882 Texas where Emma Chandler meets Malachi Shaw or best known as Mal. A loner with no home, finds refuge with Emma and her Aunt's. We then fast forward to 1894 when both are grown up and on their own. Mal, living in Montana working for the railroad, and Emma who lives in Harper's Station helping women that have no place to go..

Until... something bad happens. Somebody wants to ladies to leave the land and they are doing all they can to scare them off. As strong as Emma is she can't fight them herself so she calls Mal to come down to help.. Can you find who is threatening them before it's too late.. Even after all these years can their feelings be put aside for the sake of safety? Will love come for these two lost souls?

You will find out when you pick up this wonderful book today!! You won't regret it!!

Karen Witemeyer

Winner of the HOLT Medallion and the Carol Award and a finalist for the RITA and Christy Award, bestselling author Karen Witemeyer writes historical romance to give the world more happily-ever-afters. Karen makes her home in Texas, with her husband and three children. Learn more about Karen and her books at

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given.

A Modern Way to Cook by Anna Jones

A Modern Way to Cook
by Anna Jones

From the author of the brilliant A Modern Way to Eat, who was dubbed “the new Nigella Lawson” by The Times, comes this beautiful collection of 150+ delicious and inspiring weeknight vegetarian recipes.

EATING HEALTHY ISN’T ALWAYS EASY when you’re coming home late at night and tired. In this genius new collection of vegetarian recipes, author Anna Jones tackles this common problem, making nourishing vegetable-centered food realistic on any day of the week. The chapters are broken down by time, with recipes that can be prepared in under 15, 20, 30, and 40 minutes, so no matter how busy you are, you can get dinner on the table, whether it be smoky pepper and white bean quesadilla, butternut squash and sweet leek hash, or chickpea pasta with simple tomato sauce. With evocative and encouraging writing, A Modern Way to Cook is a truly practical and inspiring recipe collection for anyone wanting to make meals with tons of flavor and little fuss.

My Thoughts on This Book:

Are you looking for some new, delicious, vegetarian recipes that are quick to make and flavorful? Look no further.. This cookbook comes with over 150 recipes that will soon become your favorites. I know there are times that I would love to just feed the family a meal that doesn't contain meat..

Colorful pictures that accompany your recipes, you will indulge not only in dinner time meals but breakfast, and dessert too. Each recipe states how long it takes to make each meal which is helpful for those busy families..

At the beginning you will get an introduction and then dive into the essential cooking supplies.. Once you get that down, recipes galore... YUM!

About the Author:

ANNA JONES is a cook, food writer, and stylist. She worked for many years as part of Jamie Oliver’s food team—styling, writing, and working behind the scenes on books, TV shows, and food campaigns—and went on to work with some of the UK’s biggest food brands and best-known chefs. She is the author of A Modern Way to Eat, widely acclaimed as a book of the year. A Modern Way to Cook is her second book. She lives, writes, and cooks in Hackney, East London.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given...