Coming from Alaska, I am partial to mountains and oceans. South Dakota couldn’t be any more different than Alaska if it tried. Not that I am judging, or anything. When I took my trip there this summer, we decided to take a road trip west to see some of the more….mountainous regions, you might say. The Badlands looked like a good place to explore…and they didn’t disappoint. The only disappointing part was that we were on a time schedule and couldn’t hike all the trails, we managed to fit in three different ones -but plan to go back and do some more exploring.

The other downside was that not being used to the heat and sun -and not drinking nearly enough water -I ended up with a pretty bad headache at the end of the day. But lesson learned!

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So, I met a guy

I said the words, my hands wrapped around a London Fog, playing with the cup as I said them. Tears brimming up in my eyes. I glanced up across the table to get her reaction, fully expecting to have to fight to the end for this guy, I had met.

“He’s really special to me, and I hope he is to you as well.”

It’s not that I didn’t want to tell people about him…I guess it was more I wanted to make sure he was really the one I wanted to defend when things hit the fan, you know, the one I wanted to go to bat over when people started to judge…silently and not so silently.

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Over the past couple of years, I have slowly found myself in a position of teaching preschoolers…and shock of all shock, I enjoy it. Scratch that. I love it. I found my people in a group of 3 and 4 year olds.

As the years have passed, I’ve been given more and more freedom in the room and have even flown solo in a group of preschoolers where I am far outnumbered.

While I have never really had, long-term goals in life -I can say without hesitation, that being a preschool teacher, full-time, is something I am pursuing. So, you know, stay tuned.

All that is to say, that today I was in the preschool room again and was looking for a fun, (but easy) but messy! -activity.

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Late last year, Yoshi started to favor one of her back legs. A trip to the vet determined that she had “ruptured a ligament” in her knee.

It was a fairly common injury the vet assured me and there were three options: Do nothing. Send her North for the “Golden package” which would roughly cost the price of a small apartment, or the middle option -a more reasonable fix that would allow her to run again, but would require some extensive post therapy.

It all happened around the time when I was busy taking advantage of my travel freedoms and jetting here and there like there was no tomorrow. I put the decision off until a few months later when she started to carry her leg full time. I ran the numbers and determined the cost of her pain meds would quickly justify the middle option for surgery and booked her an appointment.

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Day seven.

Well, we made it to Friday. Does it matter? I’m not really sure anymore!

But we made it. One week is in the books. So. I guess it counts.

I haven’t been to Coast Guard Beach since I was probably six. The only thing I remember about it was on our back -someone got stung by a bee. And then I was tasked with carrying the pink coat -which in my mind, was the reason behind the bee sting. It was a very long walk back knowing that at any minute I could be taken down by the bee.

There were no bees today. Just me and this one:

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