Category Archives: everyday life

Looking Back On My 28 Years Of Life

Tomorrow is my birthday!!

I’m kicking off the last year of my 20’s tomorrow and that’s prompted me to look back on the 28 years of life that I’ve lived so far; things I’ve done, things that I’ve experienced. So I’ve come up with a list, that in no particular order, accounts 28 things that I’ve done in my 28 years of life!

  1. Grew up on a farm in rural Illinois (in the St. Louis area).
  2. Have 2 sisters (they’re twins) and a brother.
  3. Had an “old fashioned” appendectomy when I was 13. Long story cut VERY short, My appendix ruptured and I almost died.
  4. I had a crush on Steve Irwin growing up.
  5. I stepped on a pitch fork barefoot and one of the prongs went all the way through my toe. I still have the scars to prove it. 😂
  6. I’ve ridden horses, culled roosters, helped breed goats, and helped castrate cows.
  7. I’ve been to the old Busch Stadium and the new Busch Stadium.
  8. I met the guy who plays Fred Bird and Joe Cunningham (a retired Cardinals player) at a Cracker Barrel in Troy, IL.
  9. I’ve been to Disney world and Disney cruises several times.
  10. I’ve been to Mexico, the Caribbean, Washington DC, The Grand Canyon in Arizona, the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, and have driven through many different states on various road trips.
  11. I’ve worked at a dog boarding kennel, a Walgreens, and a nursing home.
  12. I was an essential employee during a pandemic. Something I’m still experiencing and am very much over at this point. 🙃
  13. I vividly remember seeing footage from 9/11 on TV. I’ve lived through 2 major economic collapses, have seen my country go to war. I’ve seen MANY natural disasters, people hurting other people, riots, various diseases, protest, what could be considered martial law, and a plethora of other scary things, all from the comfort of my own home. The world we live in is weird, scary, and beautiful all at the same time.
  14. I married my high school sweetheart.
  15. We moved to Kansas, 5 hours away from all of our friends and family, and created a life for ourselves, all starting at 20 (me) and 21 (him).
  16. I’ve seen Green Day, My Chemical Romance, Story of the Year, Seether, Papa Roach, Three Days Grace, Hollywood Undead, Steel Panther, and and Stone Sour play live (and those are just the notable ones! 😂).
  17. So far, I have 10 piercings and 4 tattoos.
  18. I’ve raised a countless number of animals. I’ve bottle fed puppies, goats, a calf, and kittens, and I’ve raised chicks by hand. But border collies have always been and will always be my favorite.
  19. I’ve witnessed a man take his last breath while laying in a hospital bed.
  20. I’ve loved. I’ve lost.
  21. I’ve learned to love people who started out as complete strangers to me. People who are in the end stages of their lives. People who, for the most part, I know nothing about who they were before they came to live at the nursing home I work at.
  22. I lost a significant amount weight. Gained weight. Lived an unhealthy lifestyle and a very healthy one. I started running and have now run 7 half marathons.
  23. I’ve experienced nature in all of its glory. And I’ve seen how badly people have fucked it up.
  24. I’ve eaten sushi, escargot, duck, lamb, goats milk, rabbit, squirrel, and a bunch of other “weird” food.
  25. I can hunt, grow/raise my own food, and can identify several edible plants in the wild. I also know how to process, butcher, and preserve food.
  26. I cut and dye my hair myself. I’ve even pierced my own ears because I’m stubborn AF. 😂
  27. I’m getting REALLY close to having read all of Stephen King’s published works.
  28. I’ve discovered a love of baking! I like baking dinner rolls, pretzels, and lots and lots of desserts! But out of all of the things I can bake chocolate chip cookies are my favorite! Plus, I make THE BEST chocolate chip cookies! 🍪😋

Christmas In November

Guys it’s 2020, there are no rules anymore! So Luke and I put up our Christmas tree last night. 😂

Not the best photo, but you get the idea.

Actually, what we really did last night was go to Walmart, bough a new Christmas tree because our old one was a little bit sad looking, bought some new Christmas decorations, then went home and started decorating while listening to Christmas music.

Now we don’t have EVERYTHING up yet, but we’ve got a pretty decent start with some of our Christmas stuff. We figure that 2020 has pretty much been a really shitty year and it’s looking like things are going to get shut down again, so we might as well start Christmas early!

Seriously though, I don’t know how things are where you live but the number of COVID cases in my county are skyrocketing. It’s gotten to the point where we have to get tested twice a week at the nursing home I work at, instead of the once a week we were doing. Fun times…

We had COVID in our facility for around 6ish weeks earlier this year and we are kinda expecting to get it again. Obviously I cannot say much but we have already had someone test positive last week. And we’re getting tested again today so I kinda expect that we’re going to end up with more positives… But I guess we’ll find out in a couple of days.

Honestly though I’m not surprised that my county’s numbers are so high. Last night there were soooo many people at Walmart and absolutely none of them were even trying to stay 6 feet apart from other people. And the amount of people wearing their masks incorrectly, touching their masks/face, or only wearing face shields (spoiler alert: those don’t do much in the way of preventing the spread of anything coming out of your mouth and nose. 🙄). It’s just stressful.

Luke and I rarely venture out but obviously we need to go out sometimes. Mostly for grocery shopping but last night was kind of an exception because we needed a little holiday cheer. But if we do end up contracting COVID it’s probably going to be from someone at a grocery store. That or from my work. Luke’s been working from home since like March so that’s kinda been nice.

Well sorry that this little life update kinda turned into a huge bummer. But hey, that’s where we are right now.

I hope you and your families are all staying safe and healthy! And go put up your Christmas tree! Let’s get holly jolly a little bit earlier this year! I think we all need it! 🎄💜

~Ashley

My Last Pre-Covid Adventure

I think every month I’m going start sharing a story from my life. It might be running related or it might not. Because I am more than just a runner after all! And because the more I think about it the more I realize that I do have quite a few interesting stories to share! The plan is to actually do this on the first of every month after this one time of sharing in the middle of the month, but we’ll see how that goes. 😉

So here we go!

Remember pre-Covid times? Back when we could stand in the middle of a large crowd of people without worrying about contracting a new, mysterious virus? Back when you didn’t have to wear a mask everywhere you went and didn’t have to freak out when people got too close yo you? Back when the phrase “I’ve been exposed by at least 17 different people” would raise a lot more questions. Ah memories.

This story takes place there, back in the very end of precedented times…

Now we need just a little more backstory before we get to the actual adventure; I’m from the St. Louis area, born and raised. I’ve lived in the Kansas City area for 8 years now, but to me, STL will always be my hometown. And My husband and I both still have a lot of family that live there.

So in early January of this year the NHL announced that they were going to be putting on a free outdoor Green Day “show” on Market Street right next to the Enterprise Center, which is the home stadium of the STL Blues, for the NHL all star game.

STL is our hometown, Green Day is my favorite band, AND I just so happened to be scheduled off of work that day?? Oh hell yes! We could definitely make that work!! I just had to convince Luke that it was worth it. 😂 I’m not sure if he actually thought it was, but he finally agreed that we could go and so our plans were set!

Hi my name is Ashley, Green Day fan extraordinaire.

On Thursday, January 23rd after Luke and I both got off of work, we loaded up the truck, with all of our four dogs and all, and drove the five hours to his dad’s house. And that’s the best part about having family in the area! There was no need to stay at a hotel or camp out in the truck.

We stayed the night there and hung out with everyone on Friday which was an added bonus! We always have a good time when we get together! But on Saturday the 25th it was go time!

That morning we ate breakfast and hung out at Luke’s dad’s house until about noon. That’s when we left and drove into St. Louis, found the area in which we needed to be, then found a parking space. Which is never an easy task to do in the downtown area of a big city so we ended up parking a few blocks away and then we walked to the corrals where people were already lining up. Luke wasn’t convinced that we needed to be there that early, especially because it was January and freezing cold, but I’d definitely ended up being worth it! Well, I’m my opinion anyway.

As you can see in the photo above, we were pretty close to the front of the line! Obviously there were several different lines, but still. And the longer we waited the longer the lines got! More and more people just kept showing up and even though we ended up spending a looong time standing in the cold I’m very glad we lined up as early as we did!

At 3 pm they started letting people into the pit! Luckily we had no bags so we got through the medal detectors and security pretty quickly. And then we ran. We weren’t the only people who took off running and honestly everyone looked stiff and awkward after standing in the cold for so long, but we ended up securing our spot pretty close to the middle and the closest to any stage at any show I’ve ever been to. I was STOKED!

And then the waiting continued. While the crew was setting up the stage and getting everything ready I was able to point out several different people I knew from following Green Day for so long. That was pretty cool!!

But the waiting continued. In the freezing cold. At 5:00 when Green Day didn’t come out to the stage I was beginning to suspect that this whole thing was very poorly planned by the NHL and that the band wasn’t happy with what went down either, but I won’t get into all of that. A lot of it is just speculation anyway, but some things that happened during the actual All Star Game kinda proved something. To me at least. 😉

But anyway, Green Day finally came out a little before 5:30 and obviously the crowd went crazy. I was right outside of a circle of a small group of people who were getting really rowdy. Shoving people and what not. So I had to throw a few elbows but that didn’t ruin the experience for me. Although I did leave that pit feeling sore and a little bruised. 😂

My expectations were low because now I really new that this was mostly a publicity stunt for the NHL but whatever. Green Day ended up playing three songs. Four of you count the fact that they replayed “Fire, Ready, Aim,” because the crowd “wasn’t hyped enough”. But I think the NHL just needed more footage. And that was pretty much it. Bills Joe Armstrong said “see you in the summer” because they we’re supposed to tour this summer. Obviously they didn’t happen. If only we knew then what we know now. 😂

A lot of people were pissed that the show was so short but like I said, I personally think that was the NHL’s fault, not Green Day’s. And I was just stoked that I was THAT freaking close to them and actually got to see them at a “small show”. This was probably my only chance for that because tickets for small shows sell out ridiculously fast so I’m glad I jumped at this chance! Especially since it was the last thing like this we ended up doing because of the Rona. 😉

The fun didn’t stop there though! After the show we walked back to the truck, drove back to Luke’s dad’s, picked up our dogs, got all of our stuff, said our goodbyes, and the drove the 5 hours back home to Kansas. We got home around 1:30 in the morning and probably got to bed by around 2. Then I was up at 5:30 the next morning so I could go to work that Sunday.

So long story short, we drove 5 hours to see Green Day play 3 songs at a sketchy, free show put on by the NHL, and then drove 5 hours back home right after the show so Ashley could be at work by 6 am the next day. It was exhausting but totally worth it! 😂

Me at work the next day, surviving on coffee and post-Green Day show adrenaline.

Here’s a YouTube video of the full show if you’re interested! And a video of them performing during the actual All Star Game. Billie Joe said “fuck” on live TV and it was awesome. 😂 Whoever was attempting to censor the song tried their best, but Bille still managed to sneak one in. I also don’t think they were supposed to play America Idiot, but again, that’s just my speculation so I won’t go into it. 😉

Alrighty! That’s my random life story for the month! I should have another one for you on November 1st!

~Ashley

How I’m Juggling Work, Half Marathon Training, and Everything Else In Life

The short answer; not well. 😂

Up until last week I was doing really well with my training but I’m hoping to jump back into the wagon this week! But anyway, this is basically a look into what my life looks like right now.

My house is always a mess, I definitely have to sacrifice time with my husband and pets, and I don’t always get enough sleep. But we’re all fed and taken care of. The bills are getting paid, my race is getting trained for, and my household is still functioning. So things definitely aren’t falling apart by any means!

So here’s a typical day in my life on a work day. Obviously there are going to be some variables depending on certain situations, but this is the gist;

Wake up at 5:30 am. Make coffee, eat breakfast, get all of my stuff ready for work. Check my email and social media while I do all of that.

Be at work by 6 am. Get shit done. Keep up with social media on my breaks (because I’m still. “Content creator”, “blogger”, influencer”, whatever you want to call it. Leave at 2 pm. Although a lot of times I finish early and leave around 1-1:30. 😂

Come home. Eat a snack. Feed/care for all of the animals. Usually I’ll start laundry and unload, load, and start the dishwasher. During the summer I would nap for an hour or two at this point of the day. Because it would be too hot to run until later in the evening. But now that fall is here I’ve been able to skip the nap and just head out for my runs!

Get changed, attempt to warm up. Get whatever run I have planned for that day done. Get back home from running. Chug water. Clean something/do some small chore that doesn’t take too long. Shower. Write instagram and blog posts while sitting in a wet towel/drying off/getting dressed.

Make dinner for my husband and myself, make breakfast and lunch for myself for the next day, lay out my work clothes and other things, get the coffee make ready so all I have to do is push a button in the morning. 😉😂

Watch a little tv while keeping up with instagram, the blog, and emails. Doing all of that content creator shit. Sometimes I eat a snack or drink some tea, then I brush my teeth and start getting ready for bed around 8 pm. Right before I actually go to sleep though I like to do a little bit of restorative yoga while in my bed. It’s a nice way to end the day. Set my alarm for 5:30 the next morning and actually get to sleep around 9-9:30 pm.

Rinse and repeat.

Sometimes it all gets a bit overwhelming. And quite often I end up doing literally nothing on my days off because I’m too tired/burnt out to function. But I’m making it work. Kind of. 😂