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Say Hello to Sally

Does life ever feel like it’s going by at warp speed, but then you take a beat and look back and realize you’ve really done a lot of pretty cool things? 
That’s me, Sally

Born and raised in Cincinnati, studied graphic design at UC when you actually had to use pen & paper, married my sweet MilitaryGuy in the early 90s and moved to the South. 
We became a homeschooling family back when it was kind of a weird thing to do and have homeschooled all three of our beautiful girls. We used our school time as an opportunity to jump into learning loads of things – gardening (have you ever grown peanuts? SO COOL), canning, reading, sewing, crafting, always finding the DIY, and of course traveling (we lived in Europe for a few years and had a ball exploring all over the place. Well, except for 5 year old Molly. She was not amused that we went to Venice…. a lot)

In the midst of the busy-ness of life, chronic illness hit me like a ton of flippin’ bricks. After a precarious fall — off the back of my couch. LOL. I broke my wrist which seemed to be a catalyst to rheumatoid arthritis. FYI – my father in law indeed sent a get well card to the poor broken couch, but that’s another story…

RA derailed me for a while (this disease is NO JOKE),  but I dove in and learned about natural ways to manage my issues: why diet matters, what supplements to use, how essential oils can help, why it’s absolutely crucial to reduce the toxins we expose ourselves to, and a lot more. And while my health has improved considerably, I have had to slow down a titch, which has allowed me to learn lots about the techy side of life. I’ve got this strange vibe of natural & holistic meets computer geek meets give me all the French fries.

Now that our older two girls are married and the youngest is headed off to college, it’s time to change gears. I’ve switched to Oma mode: we have two rambunctiously wonderful grandsons that we want to spend more time with (aka SPOIL).  Dave & I are ready to hook up the camper and see what adventures await. We may even pack up and move back to the Midwest. Some days I’m ready for this new chapter, and other days you might find that I burst into tears without warning.  So buckle up. I’m bringing y’all with me on this crazy ride.

How to wrap up my quirky little life so it’s all glossy and pretty?  That’s something I think I might have been trying to do my entire life!  Ah, forget it … here’s the down and dirty.  

Let’s see … born and raised my entire life in a smallish town just outside of Kansas City.  That’s in Missouri, people, just in case you need that info in your life (go Chiefs!).  Went to school for too many bachelor’s degrees (kids, think before you commit to a college pathway) – Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing AND Exercise Physiology.  While in the middle of getting my second bachelor’s degree, a lifelong friend and I decided to Spring Break in Pensacola, FL where I met my Navy fly-guy … fast forward a few years and we’re married, starting our whirlwind, slightly off-kilter life.  

We’ve lived and loved through eight military moves, found some of our favorite friends and chosen family along the way – as well as different types of living in almost every location.  From small-town island living, living in Belgian farmland, to nearly metropolitan lifestyle – you name it.  All the experiences and perspectives has really given us the opportunity to look at our options for just about all the choices we make as a family.  We’ve raised chickens, made nearly all our food from scratch, cloth diapered (twins!) attempted to garden in nearly every climate, learned the importance of what’s in and around our bodies every day.  Now, we’re fast-forwarded to almost 24 years in military life, homesteading in sweet little high-altitude-living Monument, CO, earning the retirement-on-to-second-career ropes, and giving our family roots.  

Speaking of family – after (believe it or not) years of infertility, we have five amazing kids.  We’ve seen just about everything you can imagine – and just when we thought we’d seen and experienced it all … one of the scariest moments of my entire life to this point came: cancer.  I was diagnosed at age 43 with Stage 3 ER/PR pos, Her neg, highly aggressive breast cancer.  I’ve struggled through finding a path of normal and natural and balancing that with the treatment you know are to a certain point, non-negotiables.  I feel so grateful to have a supportive spouse that had my back when I said ‘what’s the alternatives’ when everyone was saying – you will be horribly sick.  Thankfully, I am through treatment, on my chronic illness healing journey … learning every step of the way how to do this life thing better than the day before.  

My kiddos are wonderful, hectic, overwhelming, and all-around beautiful humans.  Most weekends (and evenings for that matter) you’ll find me at a swimming pool of choice watching them and their mad-swim skills.  We have a wanderlust heartbeat, and love to travel, ski, adventure, explore … AND homebody, play games and be snuggle-hermits.  We’re far from perfect, but we are doing each day as best we can.  Maybe a little better than the day before.  

Say Hello to Alison