Monday, March 30, 2009

Our Minds.

I just got done uploading some old back in the day photos...and I have come to realize just how amazing the human brain is...the things it can recall and remember...the moments and memories it holds is truly unbelievable...The gift of a memory just may be the greatest gift we were ever given...

"We don't remember days-we remember moments."...."The time will past-the memory will end and the pictures will fade but that moment will live forever on in our minds."

Time changes so much-we are little one moment-in high school-in college in one moment and off to something else the next. Yet we can always go back to those days those moments and those memories with our minds...we can remember the smiles and the laughs. we can remember millions of those little stories that make up the stories of our lives...Whether we are recalling our own lives or if we are remembering someone else's life...Our minds and memory is something that no one can take away from us...why do you think learning is so powerful....because you can never take away someone's will never have access to the things that is stored in there.

When a loved one is taken from this life...thou we will never find them on this earth again-they can always be found in our memories...and that's what we hold onto until we see that person again. Its thru our minds that we can remember when-that we can grow from...As much as I can remember I wish I could remember even more...yet I know all of those moments and memories are still locked away up in there...I love to forget at times so I can remember all over again...Our love and the love other's give us and our minds (filled with knowledge and memories) I truly believe are the only things we take with us when we leave this world...yet its the only things we truly ever need to take with us...for that holds everything...our life's story...and life's greatest treasure we were of others along with moments and memories.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Flood '09

I have spent seven years in this city...Fargo, ND....Home of the Thundering Herd North Dakota State Bison. I still spend my summers 20 miles south of town at a golf course community named Oxbow....A community and golf course that is at the moment under water. While Fargo has its leeves and dikes built...and now is hoping they will hold long enough til the water goes down. The following link will take you to to watch a clip of photos and video set to Jim Brickman/Sara Evans song "Never Alone." It shows the kind of people fighting this flood...It shows exactly who North Dakota and Minnesota (Midwest) people are...It shows the kindness and compassion in giving a helping hand...It shows how we take care of our own-our loved ones-our neighbors and yes even strangers...It shows the hard working never giving up fighting spirits. It shows point blank why I am so proud to call this state my home.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

My first Packer Punk

Every coach has that first athlete... the first athlete they ever coached... and formed that connection with... that life bond with that goes outside of the volleyball and basketball court... that carries on after the seasons-even after the game is all done....I refer to my athletes as my punks... and well I have alot of them... yet I can't wait to have a lot more...each so different... each coming into my life-and I realize that I am not the only one who is coaching... I am also learning from each and everyone of them... As a coach you don't have favorites... and if you do you certainly never voice them...but as a coach you remember that first... and you know you will never forget that first punk... because that punk is the reason why you want to coach... why you want a million more punks in your life... Well my first packer punk was a girl by the name of Jamie Green.... now I got to have quite a bond with many of those girls when I started coaching junior high volleyball and basketball...but Jamie ended up being on my volleyball and basketball team... so my time with her was a bit longer than the rest... I am proud to say I have watched her, Whitney, Sadie, Amanda, and Jill grow from junior high all the way thru high school. I am proud that I have a bond and a special connection with all the Punks I have coached. With Jamie... I knew from the very first moment I met her... she was special... and I knew she would be apart of my life forever. Over the years I have been apart of her life and her apart of mine I have come to realize that she is like my punk of a little sister. And I am so honored to have her in my life and for me to be apart of hers.

She can always be found with a smile on her face...she's a hard worker-she's positive-she has more strength and will in her than she even realizes. She's the type of kid that you wished you had about 5 or 6 more of her when you are coaching...because she is just so coachable...something that lacks in many kids I have found from time to time...but with tell her to do something-show her how to do something...and she will do questions or complaining...she just does it. She doesn't back talk or talk negative...Now don't go thinking she's perfect...I love the punk but she has her downfalls...yet all I seem to see is her thru it all. My hope is for her to fully and competely believe in her potential not just in sports but more importantly in life-in herself as a person. I hope she sees the greatness that lies within her... and more than anything I hope she lets that greatness out... I hope she can one day see herself as I see her...she is capable of so much... things she never thinks of... of reaching dreams she never thinks are reachable...yet I know they are... I believe in her and I am beyond proud of her... as an athlete yes but even more so as a person... and as long as I coach... my future punks will know all about my first packer punk...her and of course the rest of my packer I said before...those Packer Punks (ALL OF THEM) mean the world to me...and they (EACH and EVERY SINGLE ONE) will always be apart of my life--- and I will always be around if they need me...I am pretty darn blessed to have such amazing people in my life...I am so grateful to say I coached these gals...I am proud to call them my packer punks...I am proud to have that first packer punk in my life still to this day...Jamie Green...a girl that has never lost her smile...and I hope she never does.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Finally Friday

Its been a long week...filled with deaths floods survival and so much more. I am glad to see this week come to an end...glad to get it behind me...glad to look ahead to a fresh new week to come.

Bad things happen in life...but so much can be found in those moments...the understanding-kindness-gentle caring ways-love-support-compassion and humanity people-loved ones and strangers alike give and show in those times of darkness is in a word AMAZING. Its so inspiring to amazing to feel that love and kindness. I am grateful for such unbelieveable people not only in my life but more importantly in the lives that are hurting. These people hold onto us when we feel like completely letting go...These people walk in the darkness and shine their light on us to help us find our way...These people blanket us in love when we are filled with sorrow and tears...These people help us find our smile and hear our laughter again....These people show us thru their actions that life even in darkness and sadness holds HOPE...hope for light...hope for happiness..hope for a better tomorrow....each of us at one point in life(at many times in life) will be on both ends of this stick of life...Remember what others did for you when you were in your darkness...and be sure to give right sure to pay it forward...because when you find yourself in those moments-having people like that in your life...could just save your life...and mean everything.

Sorrow will carve a hole that love will fill...isn't that the truth....

Thursday, March 26, 2009

In one moment...

Last Thursday while I spent the weekend with my family I was completely unaware of what was going on between Whitefish and Kalispell...A week later-as I went to Sage to get my hair highlighted I was in formed of the sad news.

I hardly even knew her-a bubbly kind beautiful blonde who cut my hair-who I spent one afternoon with...she was around Sage when I came back again-but I needed to get in and she was booked so I went with the girl who was open. Erin was 35 years old a mother of 13 year older Caden a wife of just almost 3 years to Jason...while travelin back to Columbia Falls from Kalispell a 16 year girl somehow ended up going down the wrong way on the road and the cars hit head on...killing Erin, Caden and the baby Erin and Jason were expecting...gone in one single second...the 16 year old girl remains in critical condition in Seattle.

How can life possibly change so much for so many lives in one moment? For the loved ones left will never be the same for that 16 year old girl...she's just a kid how does she come to terms with the accident that was caused with her hands behind the wheel. A family left to mourn 2 lives and a life that never got a chance to be.

In one single moment...that was the fate of Erin, Caden and the baby to be...but it could have just as easily been one of your loved could have been you or one single the blink of an eye...lives were taken...lives were changed...lives will never be the same.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the Thompson-Odell family and the young girl and her family.

I pray we all hold life in both hands and realize just how precious it is...for it could be over in one could change forever in one single moment...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

what would you do?

I just got done watchin the movie twilight...and I must say it was very good. It got me thinking if I could live forever what would I do?

I would learn how to play the piano, I would learn sign-french-latin-german-italian. I would read and read and read...every book I could get my hands on. I would learn to rebuild an engine-how to weld. I would learn to build things like benches dressers and tables. I would become a gardner.if I had all the time in the world on my hands I would prolli spend a mass amount of it outside with nature...watching life-watching change-watching the seasons-watching sunsets and sun rises. I would befriend as many people as I could. I would take the time to be just be with all those I love. I wouldn't be in a rush-i would be in that moment knowing I had endless more to come. I would never be too busy for someone when they needed me or just wanted me to be around.

And then I thought about it a little more...why does one have to live forever to do such simple things? Why can't one be that person right now? Why not make the time when we have the time. Many people have this thing called the 'bucket list' filled with things they want to do-places they want to go-changes they want to make in their lives-goals-dreams and plans before they die....which I think is amazing and good to have don't get me wrong...but why does it take death for us to all of a sudden want to do such things-see such things-for us to change-for us to be the people we are meant to be...why does it take death to open our eyes and start truly living? Why can't we do that each and everyday!

I am not talking about travelin to europe or jumpin out of a plane-those things take saving of money and planning...but I am positive that a bucket list isn't just filled with destinations to go to...and if it is then I think you need to think a bit more outside the box...because I know there are things we can start doing right know in this very moment instead of doing it too late in life.

Things like being the kind of friend you have always wanted to all those you know. Things like taking or making the time for someone who needs you. Calling someone back right away instead of waiting and prolli forgetting. Taking an hour out of your day and playing truly playing with your kids or your cousins or whoever the kid will make their entire day and they will never forget it. Things like sending a card or an email to a friend or family member for no reason. Going to go and visit your grandparents and you aren't in a rush-ask them about their lives back when and listen! You can learn so much from these amazing people if you take the time to truly listen. Let someone go in front of you at the checkout line at target walmart or the grocery store-an elderly person, a mother of 3 or just someone that looks like they are having a bad day. Hold open the door for someone-hold up traffic and let someone cross the street or let a car in that has been waiting. Forgive. Say your sorry and mean it. Say thank you, your welcome and excuse me. Smile at a stranger. Have a random chat about pretty much nothing to a person you prolli will never see again....there are so many little things we can do right now in this moment.

Why not be the person we have always wanted to be right now...this very moment. Why not start leaving our mark in this world instead of tryin to find a way at the last minute. Why not make a difference now in someone's life. Don't wait for a death sentence...and don't count on doing such things someday in life---what happens if your someday never comes---if you are gone before your someday arrives.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

North Dakota

I am from a state that most never visit.I from a place where the horizon goes on further than the eye can even take in. I am from wheat fields and corn fields...I am from rough and tough winters and relaxing summers. I am from one of the hundreds of map dots that you would find looking at a state map. I am from a coal town. I am from a place where the wind blows and howls. I am from a place that has the most amazing sunsets because they last for ages with an endless view. I am from out in the middle of nowhere-where hay bales line the roads you drive. A place that is home to the world's largest cow-buffalo-craine-medal structure...the list goes on. A place that you can always find a cow grazin the praire and a deer leaping across...a place where you can always find a cowboy hat and boots at a wedding dance. A town where everyone knows everyone-a place where you can buy all your buddies drinks on twenty dollars. I am from a place of honest loyal and hard workers. I am from a place that is all about family. I am from North Dakota...

Tonight I pray for all those you are battling the high waters and flooding across North Dakota. I pray for all those who are homeless- who have loss so much...I am grateful for all those who have given their time and muscle to sandbagging and helping...I am proud to say I am from North Dakota because in times of challenge heartbreak and loss...we come together to help our neighbors...we see everyone as one of our own- as our ND family....that just doesn't happen just don't see that everyday...but in North Dakota its a way of life...its how we live...its who we are! Hard working-caring-giving-kind-fighters who don't give up...stay strong Dakotans...I wish I could lend a hand-so I will do the next best thing---send my prayers.

Monday, March 23, 2009


In a world that can be filled with happiness-faith-love-and all the good sure can switch gears and turn dark just as fast as it can be light. It can be filled with death-pain-tears-and hurt. Life can challenge us and change us...we find ourselves struggling and barely able to hold on...I am a firm believer that LIFE tends to always find its own way...a way that leaves us at time with endless WHY's...It can knock the wind right out of us and rock us to our core. It will slam us down and almost feel like its pinnin us to the ground-so we can't get up...It can be very ugly and dirty at times...filled with tears fears and fustration...YET we CARRY ON...YET we RISE...YET we BELIEVE...why??

I think it has something to do with fact I know it does...HOPE is that smile thru tears. HOPE is that will to rise after being constantly knocked down. HOPE is having faith the tide will turn. HOPE is believing in a better tomorrow. HOPE is not giving up no matter how bad it gets...I believe that humans are amazing beings...that can endure and carry matter how hard of the fall or how long of the fall...It takes a lot of rain to make a rainbow. It takes a lot of rain to bring you out of a drough. And trust me the rain is well worth it in the end....things happen-we fail...we fall...people get sick...people struggle...people hurt..people die...BUT we smile again...we laugh...we love...we heal...we endure...we embrace...we grow...we learn...we rise...we try...we carry on...because life is worth it...and without the darkness...without the loss...without the tears...we will never know the true value of takes major events sometimes to open our change us...sometimes its found in death...we learn to value speak the love we carry for one another...sometimes its found in a loss of a job to get us back on track...sometimes thru a child...and other times its found in watching someone fight against the odds to survive...and succeed...all the while their actions bring us HOPE...sometimes they don't win the fight...sometimes the fight is only won for awhile and they find themselves fighting again...

Yet what we don't realize...its not about winning or losing...its about the willing to fight...the will to give everything we have to this life...and with out HOPE...I know this much for would be a short and quick fight-yet I am not just referring to illness or death..its something we have to do each and every every second and moment...Faith Hope and Love...there's a reason why those words are always found together....because you can't have one without the other two....they are linked together...and because of those three has endless meaning.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Simon James

I spent most of the day, thinking of one of my best friends-a friend that I have known back to a time where all I know was she was a part of everything...grade school, birthday parties, sleepovers, volleyball-basketball-track, graduation, childhood memories..she has always been a very big part of my life...she has always been a friend-the lasting kind of friend...that you know you will always have-the kind of friend that has been a part of your life for always...the kind of friend that truly knows you because she knows your story and where you come from... I love you Shannon Sue...My heart aches for Shannon, Jeremy and Hudson...for their loss of a little fellow we will never get a chance to meet, know and watch grow-we will never know the sound of his laughter or the sight of his face when a smile formed across it...but oh we loved him so...Simon James..Life doesn't quite make sense in times like these...Life just doesn't seem fair in moments like this. How can a heart ache so much for a life you never knew? Yet it does...because I know the lives and love the lives that Simon would have been apart of...I know that even though I never knew this little guy-I never got a chance to hold him in my arms...I know he is a special little peanut just like his big brother Hudson. I know this because his parents are special-his brother is special-his grandparents are special-his aunts & uncles and cousins are special. A family filled with love and kindness...A family that mourns this little soul...A family that loves this little peanut...A family that even though never meet this little guy-will think of him always...will miss him always...he will always be part of this family...A family that loves you Simon James. May the angels lead you into paradise.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


Have you ever just STOPPED...and realized all that you have far you have come in this life...the things you accomplished...the things you have overcomed...the gift you are to this world...the greatness you carry with you...just how special YOU ARE...??

We live in a world that goes goes goes...and never stops...We achieve and thou it takes so much at times to reach that often do we enjoy it...better question is do you ever stop long enough to enjoy it...chances are you are already off to the next mountain to climb. You see past the amount of time it took you to climb this mountain...the struggle it was, the massive falls you endured, the pain-the hurt-the tears, how that climb took everything you had a times to just hold on...and even more to keep climbing...YET we reach the top of the mountain look around and start our decent down...LIKE it was nothing at all to get there...

So do me a favor the next time you have reached the top of a mountain in your life...Take a breath...let it out...enjoy the moment...take in the moment...think of all it took for you to reach that moment...all the people who helped you reach that very moment...SMILE...LAUGH...even shed a few tears...its not everyday you reach the Summit of a Mountain. And if you are like me where you fail more than you succeed...Chances are your moments in the gutter tend to out number your moments basketing in the sun with a view that goes for miles...So take it in...for those moments come only ever so often...and having those moments are what keeps us striving for more moments like that...those are the moments we remember when we are in the gutter-those are the moments that pick us up-that make us rise...that gets us to try and try or in this case...CLIMB and CLIMB...and if you don't slow down and enjoy those moments---it will take a lot more time to get you out of the gutter...

Kelly from Iowa

I met her at basketball camp when I was a freshman or sophmore in high school. We could have passed as twins back angie lee and the iowa hawkeyes bonded us forever...her name is Stacy Kelly...and she has been a true friend ever since...yet I haven't seen her in person since our camp days.

Now I know its crazy to think or call her a true friend after sayin I haven't seen her since I was 14...but she is in ever sense. She has always be there for me for a good yack, guidence or just a laugh. Our relationship has soared thru the years thru emails, letters, msn and long distance calls...I know if I ever need her she would be there just as she knows the same goes for me. She is a person that I am just happy and proud to know. She never settles in life and is always setting new goals then workin hard to achieve them. Her drive to succeed is something I hope rubs off on me just by knowin her. I know she truly cares for me as a person and a friend. She encourages me in places where I feel like I would fail-to try because you never know where success will be.

I have always been proud to call her my friend. And I will always think of her as a friend even if its another ten years before I see her...hoping it won't be thou! I am not sure why but its always been like that with her and me...from the start it was like I had found my long lost sister. Thank you, Stacy for being this person in my life-this true friend...with the distance between us you so could easily chose not to be. You could easily let the distance come between us- where we would just be some kid from nd or some kid from iowa we went to camp with way back then. But you chose to stay in touch-you chose to be a true friend to me...I thank you for this. I am grateful for this...I am more of the person I am suppose to be because of your friendship, support, guidence and encouragement. Thank you for being a part of my life---and not letting a little thing like distance stand in the way of being true friends. GO Hawkeyes!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

The 'Z' Club

This past weekend I took in my cousin's final state basketball games as a senior at Mandan high. Wow I can't believe she is graduating. I remember the day I was told my aunt and uncle were having her. I remember the day she arrived. I remember holding her for the first time-brand new and perfect...they put her into my arms and I was introduced to Brittaney Tess Zander...I remember her at my games, proms, over weekend holidays summers and vacations. She was one beautiful baby and paul jacorian and I were taken by her smile laugh and big brown eyes.

We acted like morons and goons tryin to get her to smile and laugh. For even then she had us tied around her finger. Having her in our lives is not just having some cousin for we have never treated so...we have fought with her, made her cry, made her laugh, made her know the kind of relationship you would have with a kid sister...well that's Brittaney.

After watchin her this weekend I reflected on the moment of her making the entire family watch barney tape after tape-it got to the point we all knew the songs. I remember her sittin on the floor and taking 25 puzzles and dumping them all over and puttin them together. She has grown up right before my eyes in a million simple moments into this young woman who has so much to offer this world. She has greatest she hasn't even begin to know she has. I am beyong proud of her already thus far into her life's journey...and yet she has only glazed the surface...she is only getting warmed up...for I know if she brings the same intesity and determination to life like she does to sports...well watch out is all I can can count on one thing I will always be a proud member of the 'Z' club long after her sport playing days! Thou she has found success in the sports world and has been a champion...I know that she will find even greater success in the game of life. The game that truly counts and matters.

where will this lead?

Some roads come to a detour others just a sudden end. Sometimes while we are traveling we decide its not the right path to take. No matter how bad we want to be on that path-no matter how much it blows to realize its not goin to work. It takes time letting go is hard moving on is not easy...yet in the end its the best.

And then somethings just come out of the middle of no where and completely surprise you. And you at first don't think anything of it-its no big deal...and bang everything changes. You never saw yourself walking down this road yet here you are embarkin on this journey and you just can't wait to see where it leads...just what all this will bring into your life-all the meaning-the changes...

People...well they can surprise you. They can blow you away by their actions and words while others have this gentle wind that pushes you right to them.

Saturday, March 14, 2009


Today I remember a man that left this world all to soon. I remember a man I haven't seen in ten years. A man I have thought about in some way every single day for the last tens. A man I know I will think about in the same way ten years from now. Mr. Swegarden passed away on this day ten years ago yet I still can find him in so many places.

So many lives were touched and forever changed by this man. So many carry his lessons with them. So many feel so grateful that they had the honor of knowing him and having them in their lives. He is a man that opened my eyes and helped me realize so many things. He is a man that respected his students and we respected him. He was a man that demanded our very best in school sports and more importantly life.

He had just a gentle comfortable way bout himself. Someone that always put you at ease. Someone always with a smile and his face. Someone you could laugh with. Someone who believed that you were capable of achieving things that most thought you never could. He was a positive man that lead by example. That let his actions speak loud than his words.

He is a man that I will always find myself missing and remembering. A person that I hope to be a little more like. A teacher and coach I hope I could even be somewhat like-to be half that kind of person it would be success. There is only one man like him. He was one in a million and I was somehow lucky enough and blessed that I somehow ended up with him being a part of my about being in the right place.

So today we remember you, and we carry your lessons and legacy with us always. You are still here with us. Today more than ever I hope you realize the impact you have on so many...still and always

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

favorite moment of the day

Hearing my 7 year old cousin Sadey's answer when asked the name of the willow statue...she flips it out and says...made in china! Man of man do I miss my rabbit!!! What I call her this because of her love of veggies and lettuce. She is THE coolest kid I know.

what defines us.

I was thinking today about stuff--things--items that we buy-collect-save. Its amazing how much we have when we can't take any of it when we leave. Yet we buy buy and so on.

I am proud to say that for once in my life I have started to hold off on this-i go thru my closet and belongings and constantly throw away or give away--and yet I still can't believe how much I have. I often wonder jeez michelle what will all come of this one future day way down the road. I would like to think that my belongings don't define me but rather I define the things in my life.

I now realize that most items end up being thrown away and given to the second hand store. And the things of value are given to family and friends. But there are things like my sand collection from all over the world and my book collection-journals and quotes the things that I value will others value them as much as me?

Why do we cont to buy knowing that it can't be brought with us? All that matters in the end is the perso we are-who we are-how we treat and love. How we are remembered-how people see us. Those are the things that matter...that truly matters and counts...its not bout the clothes the house the job the money the things we buy and own...things don't define us...its who we are that defines us...its the life we live that defines much as I know this I need to do a better job at times living just that and doing just that!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Life's Plan

We are the master's of our happiness or unhappiness...and I completely agree. Thru sunshine and rain-happiness lies everywhere we just must be willing and wanting to see it! Its amazing how far a positive attitude can and will take you-if you are a person who is loyal to that attitude.

How often do things not go our way in if you are like me pretty all the time...but I have found out that maybe life has a bigger plan a better plan for me. Which makes my ideas dreams goals and plans seem like nothing. Thou at the time when I can't quite reach these very things that seem just at my tends to majorly suck! I believe we are all here for a reason...we are all here to find-learn-grow and become ourselves. Some make this process seem so easy-others its always a struggle. Some have 90 years others have not even 20. Being human we tend to question things- we are constantly looking for anwsers to things that well just don't have answers to tell is not meant to be is meant to be lived and felt to the depths of one soul. Knowing believing and trusting that in the end it will all come together....things will turn out just as they truly should.

Um easier said than done is prolli the understatement of the year...and I am right along with you at times. But then I take a closer look and see the very things that I struggled the most from...the veru things that challenged me...the very things that broken me down and sucked the air out of my lungs...the very things that knocked me forever off course...the very things that changed me and forced me to learn try and grow...are the things I never planned for...never wanted...yet there they were right stuck buddle up into my life or on the path that I had...I had a choice when I reached them...I could turn around and walk away or I could work my way thru them. Well most of the time it isn't easy and its everything but pretty...but I made my way thru. And the very things that I thought I would never make it thru...turns out to be the times I found my greatest strength as a result of being right there in those moments. The are the times I found and learned more about myself than anywhere else. They are the times I grew. The time where I picked up a big part of me that was missing and became more of the person I hwas always meant to be.

So in a way I will always be grateful for those moments of struggle challenge darkness and change...for I know even at my lowesr low you will find a smile on my face and a laughter echoin will always find me tryin and tryin no matter how many times I fall or fail...because I know one thing for sure I am no quiter...ya there will be times I won't jump back and try as fast as I tend to do...but I like I said life has a plan...and if I don't try than I can only imagine what I could be missing out I get back up dust myself off and try again bringing my positive attutide smile and laugh with me always...and never waiting for an excuse to use them...I own the rights to these things and I prefer to use them when well most would never ever think of smiling laughing and having a positive attitude.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Who Am I...

*I am someone who tends to always take their time...whether it be walking to get the mail or graduating from college.
*I am someone who once you are friends with me, you can count on me anytime anywhere being there when you need me.
*I am someone who tends to value other's happiness before my own, I realize that this isn't a good thing at times but its something I can't control.
*I am someone who loves to laugh, and will always find a way to make you laugh...esp when you may not want too.
*I am someone who has at times a very dry sense of humor and have been known to be a smartass.
*I am someone that will do little things to show the people in her life how truly special they are.
*I am someone who loves to truly take in the moment, to stand back and just breath it all in.
*I am someone that tends to feel everything with my soul but play it off like I don't at all.
*I am someone who knows she is a better more rounded person because of each person she has had and will have in her life.
*I am someone that has yet to give her whole heart to someone. And not quite sure if I ever will.
*I am someone who has no problem at all traveling alone-in fact I LOVE IT.
*I am someone who thinks her brothers are two of the most amazing men in this life.
*I am someone who understands and relates to kids, I just get them.
*I am someone that once I find my "real" job I will lose myself in it, teaching and coaching will end up being my life-my source of meaning, purpose, happiness and success. I want nothing more than to get lost in it and give everything in me to the students I will teach and coach.
*I am someone who doesn't know how to take a compliment, someone who gets embrassed if you are talking about me, someone who hates opening up gifts or cards infront of people, someone who doesn't like being around when you open something from me.
*I am someone who rushes people off the phone-without even realizing it.
*I am someone that likes to be alone when I am unsure how something will affect me, I am not someone that shows their emotions for all to see.
*I am someone that fully knows she has the friendship and love of some of the most amazing people on this earth.
*I am someone that is thankful and grateful for the things people do for me, and still feel at times I am unworthy of such acts of love. kindness and friendship.
*I am someone that is never too full with friends...I always have room for more!
*I am someone that is still learning about myself, still growing into myself, still finding myself...I am someone who is just living life the best she can, who is learning from her mistakes and keeps trying. I am someone who is strong and one who will endure and embrace everything life grants me as well as throws at me. I am someone who will always be living LOVEthisLIFE. I am someone who will be not just dancing in the rain but getting as dirty as I can jumpin in the mud puddles. I am someone who falls but still rises. I am someone who will always care for you, who will always have love in her heart for you, who will never be too busy when you need me, who you can always count on! I am just a girl in the end...tryin to find her place in this world...Who are you?

Sunday, March 8, 2009

For one more day

If you could spend one more day with anyone who would you pick? This is a toss up question for me, because three people come to mind, My grandmother, My grandfather, and Mr. Swegarden. For something that well won't be coming true for sometime, I sure find myself debating and thinking over it. I never knew my grandfather that well since I was so young when he passed away. I just want the chance more than anything to know him and for him to know me. As for my grandmother, she was and still is a lady that is everything to me. And oh how I miss the simplest of simple moments with her. I would give anything to sit next to her at a baseball game or in church. I would give anything to find myself wrapped in one of her hugs of love. I would give anything to hear that gentle English voice of hers. I would give anything to see that smile of hers spread across her face. I would be willing to just spend the day out in the middle of nowhere if it meant I could spend that entire day with her.

Then there is Mr. Swegarden, who well there just aren't any words. I feel like sometimes as much as I want that day with him I would pass that day up if it meant Jami and/or Janelle could have that day with him. Most of the time I just wish I could hear his life lessons, his advice, his positive and encouraging words. I wish could be sitting in his classroom again and watch a man with such a zest for life reach-teach and change in what seemed like such a simple way...He made it look so simple because it came so natural to him. He just had this amazing way, he had this amazing way of making you feel so special and so capable of doing basically anything.

Its funny that when you find yourself missing someone...when it comes down to it...what is it that you miss about them?? Sometimes you can't put your finger on it, but most of the time its the simplest of moments. Life is a million simple moments that add up to be the story of your life...We don't remember days, we remember moments... Isn't that the truth. In the end it doesn't matter the clothes they wore, where they went, where they lived...I don't remember any of those things...I remember and miss the simple moments I got to spend with them...Sitting on the bench outside the classroom with Mr. Swegarden and just talking about well-nothing....Sitting on my grandfather's lap and his big hands tickling me-making me laugh....taking a ball game with my grandmother and talking about anything that comes to mind....Simple moments...that turns out being the best moments and most important moments...the moments that last....the moments that count....the moments we miss the most.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

The power of the mind

Sometimes I feel like I have no control of my actions and feelings. Which I can't stand-because I feel like I am not behaving in a behavior that is me. I have realized that I tend to strongly be like this when I am wrapped up in the moment...its amazing to me just how much I realize when I take a step back or shall I say to the side. All of a sudden my vision clears and I realize wow--you totally would have done or said things differently if you only took the time to remove yourself from your emotions. You know what they say live and learn...but I hope this is something I get better at when I grow more into myself. There are many things I wish I never would have done or said yet I did them and said them and well I can't take them back. I have to live with my words and actions...and hopefully learn and grow from them.

When you are dealing with feelings of the heart, well it can be a touchy and a tough spot. I am not sure with the whole the heart has a mind of its own...if I believe it or not. I realize that if you are living completely and utterly in that moment than yes it does...because that tends to be the times where we don't realize what is coming out of our mouth or just what are actions are entailing. However I truly believe that if you take a breath a deep breath...and take a step a side and fully see the spot you are will have more positive actions, words and in the end results. So many things are said in the heat of the moment...sometimes we say TOO MUCH and other times we say things we utterly don't mean. Yet once the words leave our lips we can never fully take them back. I am constantly learning about life, about me, about my emotions-actions and yes even the words I chose to say. Maybe my problem is that I think too much with my head and not enough with my heart when it comes to opening up and letting love in. Maybe this will cost me it in the end. And its just not love in general...I have love from amazin people in my life, and I am open up to certain kinds of love...but the kind of love that involves me fully and utterly giving myself, the kind of love that involves me opening up-knowing there's a good chance they might hurt me but trusting in that person still...the kind of love where you allow the person to see all sides of you-to let them know every inch of you...well it scares the crap out of me. Which results in a lot of times me cont. to fly solo...I hope that one day that I even surprise myself...I have come close but something always sets off the retreat button and I crawl back into my shell...One day I hope to surprise myself...I hope that my heart one day out smarts my mind.

Friday, March 6, 2009


Lately I have been thinkin alot how the company we keep plays such a major role in shaping us, changing us and quite possibly could be the reason we become or not become the people we are meant to many people in your life are positive know good people that surround your life...and how many are negative beings? I am not one to say cut all the negative ones out...because we need these people for balance...these are the ones that end keep us grounded...they bring us back to reality. Granted on most days I so could do without having to deal with such people. You know the kind, the one that is always in a bad mood, the one that is always rude, the one who its always about them, the one who is always complaining or is now on day 188,435,672,506 of their bad day....The ones that you try and try to be so positive with yet you know its goin in one ear and out the other.

Why do we keep these people around?? More importantly...what does one do when something stinks in the fridge and CAN'T FIND IT!! I have gone thru EVERYTHING and can't find its source...Sorry its driving me nuts because as I sit here and type I can smell the smell-strong as ever and yet can't for the life of me find it...anyways...getting back on track...I am a strong believer in embracing all the cracks and flaws in ones being...they aren't suppose to be perfect...and one can't just chose parts to love of a person...its an all or nothing sort of deal. Yet that doesn't mean that I am not tested to my limits or taken beyond my limits.

I look at the positive people in my life and I study them...and I single out just what it is...that they bring into my life that has impacted me, changed me, challenged me to grow, challenged me to reach...I know I have been blessed with so many of these people...They have walked into my life and have given me love, have believed in, trusted in me, had faith in me, and gave me hope....what did I ever do to deserve such things...such people? There are so many times where I feel completely unworthy of their love and friendship...yet there they always are...right smack in the middle of my life...I find them when I need them the most and at times where I don't need them at all...They never leave--its constant fading and I am adjusting my monitor or television. One may walk away yet someone always walks in.

So then I start to think to myself...what kind of person am I in the lives of others? I would hope I am way more positive than negative but one doesn't know for sure. I would hope I am real, down to earth, someone who leads by example, someone who is never too busy, who is always willing to do whatever it takes, someone who is always challenging and pushing growth and reaching...Funny thing about know just what others bring into your life, just what others mean to you and your life...Yet for the most part we, ourselves are left in the dark of the effect we have on another...maybe thats why I am always doing everything I can to let others know just that...I feel like when you are silent about such things you are giving such a blessing a huge injustice...So today, tomorrow....make it a point to tell at least one person how grateful you are that they are in your life...make it a point to smile! make it a point to say thank you, welcome, sorry, excuse me...let someone with a child skip ahead in the line, ask the cashier-how are you? wave to someone you don't know, hold up traffic and let a car turn or a person walk. Maybe I am just a too simple of a girl...maybe I am living in the wrong era--where life is so darn fast, where I feel so many get wrapped up in their own world they don't see or embrace the very world that surrounds them. I love just walking slow, I love standing back and taking in the moment. I love watching others succeed. I love seening happiness-that my only involvement is simply taking that moment in...Maybe I am an old soul trapped in this young body of mine--and I know the things that others will only find out later much later in life. Because I can't stand talking about others, I can't stand people judging because I strongly feel that the only time you can be judging is 1. if you are asked to judge a contest or something or 2. you are judgin yourself...for those are the only two times its allowed in my books.

The more I grow into myself I realize that I am one of those positive people, btu yet there are times where I am a negative person...and I feel thats where I need to focus my growth...I am challenging myself that when those times and moments come when its so much easier to be negative...I am goin to dig deep and be positive...I am goin to take the extra time to follow thru....I am goin to do the job fully and completely like I would if I was being positive. I am goin to pay attention to detail in those moments when I just want to rush thru. I am goin to challenge myself to reach beyond what I think or feel is my grasp. I am going to give my all when at times I might only want to give not even half...Because I don't want to be known as someone who is negative, I don't want to be connected to a negative feeling, experience or memory...

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Some Women...

Its dumpin' oustide tonite, the wind is blowin' and well its COLD!! Being from North Dakota yes I am use to this weather...however living on a usually just snows and snows and then snows some more...even for living 4,000 feet above sea level this weather is crazy for us. Its the kind of weather where you are glad you have 4 wheel drive. The kind of weather where there is NO REASON to leave home...and if you do you wonder the ENTIRE TIME...what was I think of ever leaving home?? HOWEVER it will make for prime skiing conditions we battle through the night hoping we are left with an amazing gift come morning...POW POW!!

Tonite I was reminded just how easy I trust...and well prolli should start backing that trust up with something before I just jump two feet full force into that very trust. So there you are jumpin', and not only do you jump but you get excited to jump and smack right into a brick way and the arms of trust you thought were goin to catch you ...are NO WHERE to be found...And you say to yourself...funny hahaha or jajaja jokes on me...I should have known better...there's a reason why you didn't do it before and know that reason has fully and completely exposed itself...People are meant to take chances, they are meant to lay themselves out there....with just trust, faith and hope...

Don't get me wrong I do-do this...but I have found out there is a reason why I don't do it in ALL corners of my life. Because I know better...there's some things you must fully know what you are getting yourself into...and for sure it will or will not happen. Due to past experiences I have developed a hard shell...aka I am a brick wall builder. And its funny how each time I think its time to take a wall down something proves me wrong..or shall I say right...I have realize more than ever tonight that I am this quote...and there's a good chance I always will be..."Maybe some women, aren't meant to be tamed. Maybe they need to run free until they find someone just as wild to run with them." I love this quote and you know what I am kind of happy to be someone that fits into just that...however...I realize that so many just want me to find someone who will tame my wild side...but you know what...I think by now its a side that will never be tamed...its just a side of my that must be embraced and met. I am looking for someone who will laugh with me, who sticks by their word, who loves me for me...and doesn't want to change anything about me, someone who just wants me...all of untamed side, my unsure side, my goon side, and even my quiet side. Someone that says you are all I have ever wanted and needed. Someone who will let me run...and they run right with me. Well I have yet to be with that being...maybe I will find him...maybe I won't....but I know...that if I settle..than I would only be living half of me-half of a here's to finding someone that will run with me...because there's a great chance that I won't stop for him to catch up...will I slow down...well its all depends on who is tryin to run with me.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Her name is Deondra Thilmony, I call her DEE DEE...I met her when I was hangin out/baby-sitting Jami...and I believe Jami& Deondra were like 5 or 6. Deondra invited me over for supper at her house...and for some reason I went. So there I was eating supper with her mother, father, toddler brother Jordan and Deondra's 5/6 year old self...and I would have been 13/14...once again just what kind of pre-teenager was I? Anyways soon after that I would start baby-sitting Deondra and Jordan and they would become a part of my life forever. Though they moved from Beulah to Mandan, it was because of the strong friendship Jami and Deondra had that kept me in her life. Once the girls went off to the same college, its a toss up now who I make the trip to Mankato to see.
I have tons of fun with Deondra, and in fact if I am not getting in trouble with Jami...its for sure I am causing it with this girl. We feed off each other way way way too well and too much. My time with her is filled with complete out of control fun and chaos. When we remember when...we both end up crying because of the things we have done together. She is my punk of a sister just like Jami. And I have never once just hung out with her because she was friends with Jami. I have always wanted to be around her, because she is just an amazing girl...who is full of life, smiles, laughter and love. She tends to often be my parnter in crime when I visit Mankota in fact most of the time when I am in Kato you can't find me without her. She and I have no problem at all entertaining ourselves...usually with laughter...lots of laughter. Though its thru Jami that our connection was formed and in many ways kept for many now is a firm foundation of friendship that not only stands solid but also flourish. I am so blessed to call her my friend and my sister. She is a rockstar of a gal who is always up for a good time filled with smiles, laughter and of course some cold ones. On a serious note, she is a friend that truly cares, listens and understands. She always finds the time to help a friend out and above all makes you feel special and loved. Its a true honor to have this girl in my life. And I know that wherever life takes me, near or far I will always find her in my life, ready for a laugh, a smile, a good time, a chat, a cry...She's a pretty special person...then again I should have and well I do know its from the very start, the first time I met her...even at the age of 5...I knew she was special...Why else would I ever say yes to coming over for supper if I didn't know that one day she would be one of my best friends...thanks Dee, for bringing me and somewhat forcing me from the start to be a part of your life. thank you for all the laughter, the smiles, the memories and yes even the tears. I am so proud to have you in my life but more importantly proud of the friend you are and above all the person you are....I love you Dee Dee.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

My jr high coaching days.

Today I was reminded of my early early coaching experiences when I was a junior high coach at West Fargo for volleyball and basketball. When I was hired at the time I was somewhere between the age of 21-22...In many ways I was just a big kid myself. But yet I was the one that was left in charge and in control. The first team I coached had athletes on the team that I would be coaching in some form their enite sports career in high school-something I feel was one of my greatest honors-to be apart of their lives starting in the 7th grade and to this day still be apart of their lives...Now when I share someone my out control moments they didn't involve these you know from the start you kind of know who is an athlete and will actually play and then there's the other group who are there to socialize or the sport serves as an after school baby-sitting program.

Now I remember having what I thought as the simplest of plays for these girls to run...only to find out that it was way over their heads. They forced to me change everything aout my coaching style and fit it to them so they could learn...this was a major challenge for me...that I have found I am still learning from. Let's just say when you have to have equal teams and only have one or two kids that knows what they are doing...chances are you prolli won't win alot. Then again no one did alot of was all learning. Thou we didn't win I am happy to say they learned and rememebered basic fundamentals with me which I feel carried them much further than an undeated 7th grade season but more importantly I was huge on two things sportsmanship and attitude. And all the girls that have ever been coached by me realize how strict I am when it comes to those two things. My fourth is working hard. Something I feel that all my punks have done while playing for me.

However, even being prepared and organized will not escape you from those coaching moments where you are left dumbfound and speechless because you just can't believe the kid is doin what they are doin. I will never forget a 7th grade volleyball game in Moorhead. Like always when the game starts I am completely into the game and don't pay alot of attention to anything else. As much as I tried to focus I couldn't help but hear this girl at the end of the bench ask all these went on and on...and I was getting feed up with no one answering her, finally I turned to the girls on the bench and said SOMEONE PLEASE ANSWER HER! It was only then as my glance reached the end of the bench did I find that she wasn't asking her teammates questions or even talking to them...she was on her cell phone....I don't think I have ever gotten up so fast. By the time I reached the end of the bench I thought I was still sitting down. I grab the phone out of her hands-told the person um she's goin to have to call you back...she's suppose to be playing in a volleyball game right now...I walked away and sat down. It was only then when I looked back at her and just shook my head...really...I really need to start having talks about no cellphones during games...really...of course the parents behind me were all cracking up.

One of my other out control moments came when coaching a jr. high basketball game at Shanley. Before every game I make sure all the girls go to the bathroom, to avoid them from having to leave the court during the game to go. Of course 2 minutes into the game two girls just had to have to go to the bathroom. Of course I said really...what did I say before we left the locker room...they said coach its all the water we based on the pee dance they were both giving me I knew they were not lying...So i said you go and come right back! Once again I got completely focused in the game and forgot all about them. In Shanley the way the gym is set up, you can see everyone walk into the gym with all the seating on that side while the teams are on the other side of the gym sitting. It was during free throws when I noticed the two girls standing in the doorway and waitin to be able to cross the court and come back to the bench. As they started their walk towards me I noticed one was holding skittles and the other was then I started saying ARE YOU KIDDIN ME...when they reached the end of the bench they were meet by me...I simply took their concession stand purchases and said I thought you two had to pee...well we did coach but we were also hungry..I replied unbelievable...players don't make food runs during THEIR GAMES...I walked away and one asked as I walked coach do we get our purchases...I said after the game...the girl made a huge torked off sound while the other girl goes to her well at least your skittles will still be good my nachos will be wrecked....Thank God my back was to them because that comment basically made me lose it-I had one heck of a time tryin to cover up my laughter.

Junior high takes alot because you are forced to play games with players that well if you are lucky you have 10 percent who actually want to be there and actually know what they are doing. The rest well they want to talk on their cell phones or go to the concession stands. But I have found that it can't be about winning or losing when they start will be enough about that later in sports. At that age they need to be taught the core fundamentals, taught about attitude and sportsmanship and above all believed in. And prolli the biggest have fun while working hard. During my years of coaching junior high I did alot of shaking my head and smiling. And the girls knew right away what that meant...its not something we should do. I never had to raise my voice at any of them....and if i ever did-they knew they were in hot hot water. However challenging it was at times I loved spending my afternoons and tuesday/thursday evenings with them. Just like teaching most the time when I am coaching I am learning prolli more than the kids I coach. Because I am constantly learning about them as people and as players and doing my absolute best on reaching them and getting them to understand not only what I want them to do but to understand what they need to do when they are on that court to the point where I don't have to constantly tell them.

I am always amazed when a coach will say they don't need to change their ways...coaching is teaching and teaching is don't just teach or coach to one section of players/learners...if you want to be successful you have to find a way to teach/coach to the entire class or team...why not let a player teach you something. Why not let a team get to know you-and you get to know them outside of being a player or student....heck you may just find yourself learning from them...that's why I feel as a coach/teacher you have your core things that will never change about your philosophy...but the rest should be always changing. Because not every team is the same and I know for certain they aren't all the same kids that learn and do things the same way. Coaching junior high sports where its complete chaos...helped me learn that very simple and important lesson.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Happy 90th Birthday Gramps

Today my Gramps, turned 90 years younger...I say younger because he truly has a young heart...still just a kid well a grown up kid but you know what I mean. He is hands down one amazing man that I have been honored to call Gramps. Anyone who meets my grandfather falls in love with him because he is just so darn sweet and cute. I love how each and every time I take his photo (which I tend to take a lot) he will say something like thank you sweetie or thank you beautiful. I love goin to see him and getting one of those bear hugs that he always gives me...and yup he is 90 and he still lifts me off the ground when he hugs me. And he always has the sweetest things to say to me like..ain't you a site for sore eyes, I have missed your beautiful smile...or my favorite just the person I have been waiting for. I love the man to pieces.
He is gentle, caring and kind. A man that I have never in my life hear raise his voice...well at least not at me or my brothers...I am sure he has but never when we were in the room. He was and still is our biggest fan not just in sports but in life. He was the active grandfather when growing up he was ALWAYS doing something with the three of us...playing baseball, basketball, football, cards, puzzles, takin us for bike rides-wagon rides-or walks. Taking us to check on all his birdhouses he had all over Mandan-Bismarck, letting us help him fill the candy machine...and of course always letting us eat as much candy as we wanted...Always taking us on car rides for ice cream or french frieds...He was never too busy for us...and often we were the ones that would get bored before he did...When we played with him he wasn't just our grandfather but our best friend. I think of all the things...the little things he did for my brothers and I...hanging a swingin rope in the back yard, letting us run and prolli ruin his perfect bright green grass, welding rim after rim because we always hung on the rim, letting us feed the birds even thou chances are we scared the birds away, buying us little toys, renting movies he knew we would love, making us popcorn...and so much more. Its all the simple things he did looking back that mean the world to me now and always. My entire life he has filled my life with unconditional love. He has a special connection with each of his children and grandchildren...but to this day I can't help but think how very special the relationship he has with my brothers and me...maybe because we did so much of our growing with him...I think back and see and remember him at so many birthdays, every holiday, on vacations, sporting events, school events, summers, weekends, hunting and fishing...I have a hard time thinkin back to my childhood and not finding a time when he wasn't there...and it didn't stop when we turned 13 or 16...all the way thru to college graduations and so much more.

You have always shown us the pride and joy you find in being apart of our lives, you have always given us your unconditional love, you have always taken the time, you have always treated us with your eyes we always mattered, always made a difference, always number one. To you it was never about wins or losses...for you were proud no matter do I know or we know...because you always gave us the same hug filled with every ounce of your pride. Because we always saw you choke up and smile when you said you were proud of us...not just in sports but in so many corners of life.

I thank you Gramps for giving so much of your time and your love to three Goldmanns who love you to pieces...but more importantly he gave his very best to all in his family...not just the three of us. Happy Birthday Gramps! I love you!!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The effects of another.

"You can never forget the people who change your life..You become a different person and everything you do is slightly altered by what they taught you."

I can not even begin to list all the people in my life this quote applies to...I am a firm believer that I am who I am today because of each and every human being that has been in my life...and its these people who will and have helped me find pieces of myself...pick them up...and let those pieces be apart of me forever. Whether they have been apart of my life since the very start, or for years and years...or maybe just a day-a doesn't matter...I know for a fact their presences brought something into my life...maybe it was a simple as a smile...maybe it was a lesson thur pain or hurt...We don't just learn the fun stuff and remember those moments...but more often we remember and grow the most from the hard stuff...from being hurt, from hurting others, from letting go, from moving on, from parting ways, from forgiving, from being forgiven, from the root of darkness...those moments tend to be the ones that grow us truly into the people that we are...those are the direct result in where we find true strength...And I know that I can't just have people who love me in my life...I can't just have all sunshine and happiness...because I am missing out on a big part of understanding and truly living life if I do...Just like you take light and and death...laughter and a two sided can't take one without the other....the same goes for the people in your life.

Were those moments I no...but I endured them...I learned from them and I grew from them...and hopefully I grew in the right direction...growing in positive not negative...becoming more...becoming a better person than who I was at the time before these lessons...All I want is to let the lessons I learn thru life and thru the people that come into and out of my life...have a positive effect...that because of these moments these lessons and these people...I am able to do more with my life...I am able to give... understand... show compassion... endure... befriend... forgive... love... and above all grow that much closer to understanding life. I thank you ... the people in my life... for showing and teaching me these lessons each and every second of my life.