best of 2019

Hello friends! I’m back for day two of my 2019 review. Yesterday I recapped the year’s most defining moments, memories, and adventures, and today I am sharing my ‘Best of 2019’ list. I saw a couple other bloggers do this, and I instantly loved it. It’s a mix of highlights from the year and recommendations for things I’ve tried and loved. I hope you enjoy!

Best adventure/travel/trip: In November we too a week long vacation at an all inclusive resort in St Lucia. It was the perfect trip full of relaxation, with some adventure. We had been saving up for a vacation like this for a long time, so to finally go on it and to enjoy it as much as we did was incredibly satisfying.

Another outstanding adventure was our hike 8.5 mile hike to Sky Pond in Rocky Mountain National Park. It was a perfect day in the mountains, and the entire trek was nothing short of a fairy tale.

Best book: Three books stand out to me as total game changers for my heart and life this year:

  1. You Are the Girl for the Job: Daring to Believe the God Who Calls You by Jess Connolly
  2. Something Needs to Change: A Call to Make Your Life Count in a World of Urgent Need by David Platt
  3. Imperfect Courage: Live a Life of Purpose by Leaving Comfort and Going Scared by Jessica Honeggar

Each of these books were laced with the right balance of truth, encouragement, and a total kick in the pants. Each of them were a call to something more. Each of them spurred me on in my faith journey in ways I didn’t realize how badly I needed. Each of them are going to be books of lifelong worth to me (I’m already on my second read through of You Are the Girl for the Job since it released in September – it’s just that good).

Best movie: I mean, there couldn’t possibly be another winner for this category other than Avengers: Endgame. Just absolutely epic.

Best album or song: I think this category can best be summed up with the help of my Spotify Wrapped. According to the stats, my sound changed with the seasons (which is usually the case) and the four top songs for each season it identified had me nodding my head in agreement.

Winter: Cringe – Stripped by Matt Maeson
Spring: Waiting for My Time to Come by Colony House
Summer: Live Forever by Mike Mains & the Branches
Fall: Carry Me Away by John Mayer

If you’re interested, you can listen along to what was on repeat for me in 2019 here.

Best podcast: The Balanced Life Podcast with Robin Long. Each week Robin interviews women who appear to be “doing it all,” and she talks with them about what they do AND don’t do to find their own unique sense of balance. Balance is a fairly consistent buzz word in my life, so I have found myself incredibly encouraged and inspired by the conversations in her first season.

Best follow on Instagram: Jess Connolly has been a consistent source of encouragement and truth on my instagram feed for years now. If it’s possible to be discipled by someone you’ve never even met, then she’s certainly done that for me. I’ve also followed Elise Cripe for years now and I find myself loving her real-talk attitude about goal setting, balance, and just living your life in a way that works for you.

Best date: We’ve had a conglomeration of date days that revolve around heading down to Fort Collins to explore or adventure. They’ve included going to the rock climbing gym, browsing REI or Trader Joe’s, wandering around Old Town, landing at some yummy restaurants with nice ambiance, and usually finishing with either Insomnia Cookies or Churn ice cream. Every time we have a day like this, I find myself enjoying the adventures with the company of my husband. Also noteworthy: we’ve never gone wrong with going out for a hike or doing an escape room.

Best faith grower: Two things stand out to me this year, each having to do with our jobs.

The most recent has been the gym I worked for going out of business, and then determining what my next steps would be. The road leading to closure was bumpy and challenging, and I found myself falling at the feet of Jesus each morning as we navigated through it. As a result, He provided me with so much peace and hope in His faithfulness amidst the feelings of turmoil, and He took it even further and revealed His plans for me in this next season. I dive more into this story here.

The other would be deciphering the right steps with an opportunity Adam could have had in his career. The decision making process had us going back and forth over the course of a year as we took our logistics, preferences, and past experiences that affected the decision into consideration, and for awhile we weren’t getting a clear ‘yes’ or ‘no’ from God. It not only drew us towards each other to process the decision together, but amidst the uncertainty of what to do, I again spent a lot of time handing it all over to God and trusting Him to lead us to the best decision. In the end, Adam decided to not pursue the opportunity and we both have been united and at peace about the decision.

Best trend you tried: This summer I gave intermittent fasting a try during our staff fitness challenge, and it was a total breakthrough for me in my health journey. I’ll likely be sharing more about my story with it here in the future.

Alternatively, I don’t know if you’d consider this a trend, but since it’s been a popular TV show for the last 10 years…despite my strong distaste for reality TV, Adam somehow got me hooked on Survivor this spring, so I decided to start from the beginning and watch all the way through. I’m currently on season 21, which is just past the halfway point as season 40 will be airing in February. Needless to say, I got into a much bigger commitment than I realized.

Best beauty purchase: I think I technically started using this in 2018, but I will still rave about my favorite dry shampoo more than any beauty product I use. This one actually makes my fine hair look and feel clean on days that it certainly doesn’t start out that way.

Best family memory: There’s not one specific day that stands out, but some of my favorite moments have been the simple, mundane ones. The evening summer walks we’d go on with the dogs, laughing hysterically at one of the dogs for something ridiculous they did (usually it’s Rizzo), playing in the snow – which just led to the dogs eating the snow. I think of those times and think of how one day I’m going to look back on moments like that and think “those were the days.” I love this simple little family of mine.

Best habit you created: Slow, quiet mornings with Jesus. I have usually spent my time praying, journaling, or reading my Bible in the mornings, and I have tried different routines to really maximize that time. What seems to work best for me is starting my day with Jesus before anything else. This led me to start getting up even just a little bit earlier to make sure I’d have time to take it slow before I jumped into my day. Even now that I’m not working, I have continued with the habit of starting most of my days with downing a glass of water, and slowly sipping a cup of coffee while I pray or read.

An honorable mention that I can’t quite claim as a habit because I don’t do it consistently enough – but definitely want it to be – is phone/scroll free days at least once a week. On those days I avoid time wasting habits on my phone (usually Instagram and Facebook), so that I can actually do the things I think about doing. Each time I do it, I’m always very glad I did.

Favorite blog post written: In honor of 10 years having passed since I graduated high school this year, I wrote a letter to my 17 year old self. It was cathartic to look back upon my younger self with grace and tenderness, and it was fun to reflect on how much I’ve grown and how much my life has changed since receiving that diploma.

Best new recipe: This instant pot chili recipe has been on repeat since the weather turned. An easy, hearty meal that we usually pair with some honey cornbread.

Best life hack: Two words: Pizza Friday. Most nights I’m not overly thrilled about the process of cooking dinner, but at the end of the work week, I was all the more over it. So on Friday nights we started spending the night in with two Jack’s pizzas and a couple TV shows (& usually some Ben & Jerry’s to go along with it). We started doing this sometime in the summer, and basically haven’t stopped. I’ve dubbed it my “Sabbath meal” because it allows me to rest from the work of planning and preparing a meal. It’s become a time of rest that we look forward to every week.

Best home improvement: This summer I got an outdoor rug and some string lights for our back patio, and it made my summer days even more joyful, and my summer nights even more magical.

Best little luxury you’ve enjoyed: On Amazon Prime Day we took the plunge and got ourselves a robot vacuum. While at times we both can have mixed reviews about the one we have, I’m thankful to have a little help at trying to keep the dog hair tumbleweeds at bay.

And that’s a wrap, on this post and on 2019 – though some reflections may trickle into the new year as I discuss goals for the year ahead. It’s been a good year in the real life Pruim life, and I hope that 2020 has some beautiful things in store for you all!

Happy New Year,

P.S. I’d love to know – what are some of your “bests” from 2019? Let me know in the comments!

2019 recap

Hi friends! I can hardly believe that 2020 is just two days away. A new year AND a new decade. But before I jump into what the future holds, I always enjoy looking back and reflecting on all that happened throughout the year. But why keep all the fun to myself? I personally enjoy seeing other people’s end-of-year reviews, and so I wanted to take not just one, but TWO days to give you all a glimpse into my 2019.

Today I’ll be recapping this year’s most defining moments, memories, and adventures. And then, be sure to come back tomorrow to check out my ‘Best of 2019’ list. I hope you enjoy!

2019 started off a bit out of the ordinary for us. A few days into the new year, Adam left for a work trip/training for 7 weeks in Alabama, so we spent the first two months of the year apart. It certainly wasn’t ideal, but we managed alright – our many years of long-distance dating seemed to have prepared us. I spent a lot of our time apart hanging out with the dogs, focusing a little harder on my workouts and nutrition, and getting together more frequently with some friends to help pass – and make the most of – the time. But I was absolutely giddy when Adam finally returned home. You can read a bit more of what was going on in my heart after those two months in my first coffee date post here.

In both March and April we were able to spend some quality time with our friends Steve and Megan, and their three boys, while they were in town from Montana for a couple work trips. Although it’s because of the Air Force that we don’t live near each other anymore, I’m also so thankful that because of the Air Force we were able to have some time together. Our friendship was founded on game nights, so much of their time in town was spent doing just that, but we also ventured down to the Denver Aquarium one day to meet up with some of their college friends, and we even survived Cheyenne’s Bomb Cyclone while they were here.

At the end of March we went to see Switchfoot, our favorite band, play in Denver at the Fillmore. This was my 5th Switchfoot concert (and Adam’s 4th), and every time I see them I have more and more respect and love for their music, and for how they live their lives. Plus, there’s something so magical about live music – so needless to say, we had a great time.

In April, we flew to Michigan for the wedding of one of my college friends. It was a perfect opportunity to not only celebrate the new Mr. and Mrs., but also spend the weekend with our friends Joe & Vanessa, and their daughter, who drove down from Minnesota. We rented a lake house Airbnb for the weekend. Apart from the wedding festivities, we also explored a bit in downtown Detroit, but mostly our time was spent catching up and reminiscing while trying to complete a puzzle that had at least 10 missing pieces.

We started attending a new church this year, after never feeling truly settled in the church we first attended when we moved to Cheyenne. I’ve mentioned on the blog before that one of the hardest parts of the military life for me has been finding a new church every time we move. There have still been some expectations I’ve needed to adjust and walls that I’ve had to break down from experiences with past churches, but we’ve been meeting more people and slowly getting more plugged in with the church community through a small group.

For our anniversary this year we took advantage of the long Memorial Day weekend and went to Colorado Springs for the first time. It was the perfect little getaway in the most perfect little Airbnb. You can see a detailed recap of our weekend here including what we did, where we ate, and what I’d like to do when we get the chance to go back.

As an anniversary gift this year we started using the Marriage Journal to help us grow in communication and strengthen our marriage, and I have two words for you: GAME. CHANGER. I plan to share more about our experience with the Marriage Journal in the future here, so I won’t dive too deep now, but it was such a monumental part of our year that it is certainly worth mentioning.

While the entire year has been marked with a great deal of progress and growth in my health and wellness journey, I started off the summer with a fitness competition amongst the staff at the gym I worked at. While I didn’t win, it was within the challenge that I gave intermittent fasting a try for the first time, and it was a major breakthrough for me. I also plan to share more about this in the future, so I’ll have to leave you hanging, but it’s something that has really marked the second half of my year.

A somewhat challenging part of the year for us was some concern over Boone’s health. In May he experienced what we believe now was a sprain in his leg after playing fetch outside. There was some initial concern that he had a partial tear to his ACL, but after some pain meds and strict rest for a few weeks, he started to recover well, making it less likely that it was anything more than a sprain. Then just a month or two later, he had started showing some similar symptoms with his other leg. It spiraled us both into worst case scenario thinking, and I was concerned that something more serious was going on since this seemed like a repeat injury, but thankfully we discovered that he had a broken toe. Our vet here has been awesome at helping ease our minds that he is doing a-okay. He had a few more weeks of strict rest, which was challenging since he’s a fairly active pup and his brother wanted to play with him too, but after doing so, and after starting him on a joint supplement, he thankfully has finished the year strong, and as sweet as ever.

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At the end of June/beginning of July we made the trek back to Illinois (where we both are from) to visit with family and friends. Our trips home are usually a whirlwind, full of fitting in as many loved ones as possible, and this one was no different. This trip was highlighted with a surprise birthday party for Adam’s mom, a family reunion with Adam’s family, visiting our home church, seeing Spiderman with my family, and plenty of breakfast, lunch, and dinner dates with family, high school and college friends, family friends, and mentors. While we can never manage to see everyone we want to or hope to on these trips, I was able to extend myself a bit of extra grace for not being able to do everything with everyone – which was an answer to prayer, because in recent years the stress of it all has weighed heavier on me with each trip.

Smack dab in the middle of our IL trip we spent a weekend up in Michigan for one of my best friend’s weddings. I was a bridesmaid, and Adam joined in with the groom’s festivities, so we spent the entire weekend celebrating Hannah & Brent’s union, as well as spending quality time catching up with some of my dearest college friends. My heart tank was definitely feeling full after that.

In July I finally got to put my new hiking boots to use as we embarked on a couple adventures. We took the pups for a light hike at Curt Gowdy State Park, spent a super hot day hiking up Horsetooth Mountain in Fort Collins, and took on a challenging alpine hike on the Ute Trail in Rocky Mountain National Park. I have loved turning hiking into a hobby since we have lived in Cheyenne and have close access to some beautiful places (a.k.a. gimme all them mountains!), so these adventures were a special treat.

Last summer I experienced a minor injury to my shoulder/bicep tendon that didn’t seem to want to go away, so at the end of 2018 I started physical therapy, which carried on through the first half of this year. It felt a bit slow going, and I experienced a set back at one point, but I was officially discharged from physical therapy in July. I still have to be mindful of my shoulder as it can occasionally get agitated, but through the process I learned a lot and am much more aware of how to better care for it, as well as how to be more in tune with my body.

August held multiple opportunities for us to spend time with some of “our people.” Joe and Vanessa, who I mentioned we met up in Michigan with, traveled to Denver for their anniversary and invited us to spend the day with them. We adventured around town, taking them to some of our favorite places, as well as trying out some new ones. 

Then at the end of the month, we drove up to Montana over Labor Day weekend to see a whole slew of our Air Force family. A good majority of our friends from our first base in North Dakota now live in Montana, so it was amazing to be able to reunite with so many familiar faces and catch up. It was one of those trips that you feel like you are home in an entirely new place just because of the people you are with. Some of our friends even surprised me for a late birthday adventure with an escape room and ice cream – some of my favorites.

Adam set out at the beginning of this year to challenge himself with a hard goal, and he decided to run a marathon, even though he admittedly hates running. After training all year, in September he ran the Cheyenne marathon, and I couldn’t be more proud of him. Surprisingly, it has spurred him on to push himself to new limits and he’s already training for his next one (I don’t believe him anymore when he says he hates running). An extra treat was a friend of ours from high school, Zack, coming to town after Adam finished, so we had some quality time to catch up on life with him.

Because of Adam’s marathon training over the summer, we held off on going on a big hike that I had been aiming to do all year until he was finished. So the week after, we finally made the trek up to Sky Pond in Rocky Mountain National Park. I definitely want to share more about this hike on the blog, as well as some of the others I mentioned before, so that is something to look forward to (all these teasers, I know). But man, I still get heart eyes when I see the pictures from this gorgeous hike up to Loch Lake, Lake of Glass, and Sky Pond. 

Towards the end of this year Adam took on a new role at work as a flight commander, which has shifted his responsibilities from managing training products to managing people, and I already think it is exercising and sharpening his skills and strengths. It’s been a great opportunity already for him and I’m excited to see how he continues to grow and learn as he does something new.

In November, we had an opportunity to see Switchfoot for a second time this year – this time in Boulder. Over the summer they announced their Fantastic Traveling Music Show, which was a double-set tour, and I am SO glad that they made a stop near where we live so we could see it. I love seeing them live regardless, but to have the chance to hear some deeper tracks that you wouldn’t normally get at a show was awesome.

One of our best highlights of the year was FINALLY going on a big vacation that we had been saving up for. We spent a week at a Sandals resort in St. Lucia. I definitely plan to recap the trip in detail here soon, so I won’t give away too much yet, but it was absolutely everything we wanted the trip to be, and more: So much relaxation, with a little bit of adventure mixed in.

One of the biggest markers of 2019 for me came at the end of the year with the gym I worked for going out of business. I dove into more of the nitty gritty details here if you are interested, but I have spent these last few weeks of the year transitioning to a new season of abstaining from working to devote more time to blogging and tending to relationships in our lives. This will definitely be a catalyst for whatever is to come in 2020.

Since we took a vacation in November, and Adam switched to a new squadron with his flight commander position, we knew getting time off to travel home for Christmas was going to be unlikely, so we stuck around Cheyenne for a quiet, cozy holiday this year. Adam’s parent’s came for a quick visit at the start of December to spend some time with us and we had a pretty laid back visit with them. Then we had a week or so of Christmas parties and get togethers, followed by a week or so of being hermits and cozying up inside for the holidays. While being away from family and friends over the holidays can be hard, there’s also something really special to me about slowing down, so it has been a great way to finish off the year.

Whew! That was a doozy. If you’ve made it this far, thanks for hanging in there. There’s nothing like looking back on 365 days to realize how much actually happened. As I reflect back on this year, I love getting to see the threads that God has strung throughout.

It was a year of endurance through a variety of changes I experienced with my job, including the ultimate end of it. It was a year of diving deeper into new and current friendships as we established more of a community here. It was a year of growth for our marriage. It was a year of progress with my health and wellness. And as evidenced by what I shared here, it was a year of some fun adventures. I can look back on 2019 with fondness, even amidst the challenges, because what is coming out of it on the other side feels fruitful and good. I can’t wait to see what 2020 has in store. And as you can see, I’ve alluded to plenty of content that you can hope to be seeing in 2020 as well.

BUT, before we go there, join me TOMORROW for my “best of 2019” list. Think of it as some fun superlatives to further highlight the big and little things from this year. 

Until then,

What were some of your highlights from 2019? I’d love to hear about them in the comments below!

catching up // the past three years

Hi again friends – both old and new. Considering it’s been three years since I popped my head in around here, it’s safe to say that quite a bit has changed. So I figured a good place to start with this return to blogging would be to catch you all up to speed on what’s going on in our real life Pruim life to help give some context for what things look like for us right now. I won’t get too nitty gritty, but three years is a lot of ground to cover, so bear with me. Let’s hit the highlights, shall we?

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1. We moved.

And not just down the street like we did in my last post before I went silent. We moved to a whole new state. After 3 years in North Dakota, the Air Force bid us onward to Wyoming last October. Leaving our life in Minot certainly was no easy task as we had to endure a lot of tough goodbyes, but at the same time we were excited for a new season and a change of scenery. Of the limited options of places for us to go at this point in Adam’s career, Cheyenne was the one we were hoping to land in. While there are some details that haven’t panned out how we originally hoped, as a whole, we’ve really enjoyed the area we are living in. There’s closer access to a lot more here than there was in Minot, especially being so close to Colorado & Denver, so that’s a nice change. And the best part? Those Rocky Mountains you can see in the distance from certain parts of town are a wonderland to live near, but I’ll touch more on that below.

The perks of the location have definitely helped make up for the differences we have had to adjust to in our sense of community here in comparison to Minot. People can say what they want about Minot (and trust me, there are plenty of opinions), but the community we experienced there was something special that we quickly learned isn’t always the norm at each base. Maybe it has something to do with that being our first long term assignment, maybe it has something to do with the place itself, or maybe we just got really lucky with the people we met there, but we’re so thankful for the friendships that came about in those three years. Here in Cheyenne, it’s been a little different and taken a little bit longer – at least in regards to the military community – so the last year has involved some accepting of those differences, shifting of expectations, and making attempts to break out of our recent natural tendency to fold in and be homebodies. Moving every few years is bound to have a significant impact on opportunities for community, especially with every place being unique, so we’re doing our best to pay attention to the path God has paved for us here.

As for how long we’re expected to live here, it could be another two years, give or take. It depends on different opportunities that could come up in Adam’s career that could keep us here longer, or send us away sooner. With the Air Force, you never really know.



2. We added another member to our family.

No babies here yet, but we did add another pup to our family about 2 years ago, who just so happens to be Boone’s biological half-brother. Back when we became interested in getting another dog, we knew we wanted another Aussie, but we didn’t come across any breeders close to us in Minot, so we reached out to the breeder we got Boone from in California since we were so pleased with our experience with her before. Lo & behold she had a new litter of pups soon after from the same dad as Boone. Once our new puppy was old enough to come home, we had him flown to Minot to join our family even after a week’s delay from a massive snow storm. Rizzo (named after a Chicago Cubs player because he was born just before they won the World Series in 2016) has been our family wild card ever since. He’s totally nonsensical in so many ways, with quirks and strange habits that keep us laughing daily. Despite some blood relation, he and Boone could not be more different. Boone is our mellow, fetch obsessed, timid dog and Rizzo is our rambunctious, attention seeking, social dog. And yet, they’re both so wonderfully perfect for our family.

Boone adjusted fairly well to Rizzo when he first came home to us, and they still get along great. Boone is 4 1/2 years old now, which blows my mind. He’s as sweet as ever and definitely has shown some signs of maturity over the years, but he still has plenty of energy and playfulness in him. These two fluff-butts are a huge part of our hearts and life, and we have no shame in how we treat them like our children. Plus, they’re nice preparation for whenever we decide to have kiddos of our own someday. Until then, we’ll continue enjoying endless amounts of puppy snuggles.


3. We bought a house.

With this move we made the choice to buy a house rather than rent or live on base. It took a lot of convincing on my part because I always thought buying a house was logical when you get settled somewhere, and that is very opposite of the military life we are living right now. However, through a lot of insight from friends and acquaintances that have lived in Cheyenne, the housing market felt secure enough to take the plunge and do one of the most legit adult things we’ve done so far in our lives. I’m so glad that God led us through that decision, because we absolutely adore this home. We definitely had that “this is the one” feeling when we walked through it and I feel so fortunate that it ended up as ours – especially considering a few of the stressors we faced in the buying process. The house was flipped before we bought it so it had a lot of new updates to it that we really enjoy the aesthetic of, and the size is just right – not too big, but still spacious enough to be comfortable. I find myself thanking God very frequently for this home. It has been such a perfect fit for us in this season and I love so much about it. It will be sad to (most likely) sell when we move from here, so I am soaking up every moment I have in it for now.


4. I got a new job.

Obviously with moving to a new state, a job change was bound to happen for me. The big change with this one, though, was that I intentionally went for something entirely different. I spent two and a half years working for a youth mentoring program in Minot and really enjoyed my experience there. But when looking for a new job in Cheyenne, I decided to look beyond my social work background, and I really honed in on my strengths and what I’ve liked about all of my previous work experiences. I couldn’t ignore the way organizing and systematizing things makes my heart pitter patter. I’m that weird person that enjoys tedious paperwork and I absolutely love making where I work more efficient and productive. With all of this in mind, I sought out some secretary positions to start, and only by God’s grace and leading did I end up in truly my most favorite job I have ever had. I’m an Office Manager at a local gym that emphasizes on HIIT workouts and transformation challenges, and it has been impacting my life in ways I never expected – both professionally and personally. I love what I’m doing day to day, and it’s been fun for me to really press into those aforementioned strengths. My bosses and co-workers are amazing, and we have an awesome client community that feels very tight knit. I didn’t seek out this job in any way for the fitness environment, but over time it has been an answer to prayer towards my desire to find better balance with my health and fitness in relation to all other aspects of my life. All in all, it’s been a dream and I truly enjoy going to work each day.

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5. We’re a lot more used to this Air Force life.

It’s been four and a half years since Adam went Active Duty, and while I would never claim to be an expert on military life (I still feel like a novice most days), I feel like we have a much better handle on it than we did three years ago. One of the biggest things I have learned is that there is no one set version of “military life” because there is such a large variety of jobs and experiences in each branch of the military, so my experience is far different from what many other military spouses have endured (and it’s also very different from what most people expect it to be). But I’ve at least gained some knowledge on the specific path we are on, and I’ve gotten more used to what to expect (which is usually to expect the unexpected). I’ve grown an appreciation for some of the unique benefits that come with being a part of the military community, and I’ve also taken some comfort in discovering that we are not alone in some of the trials we have faced as a result of it too. It’s never a sure thing how long exactly we’ll continue on this path, but our plan up to now has been for Adam to stay in for a 20 year career. We’re keeping our hands open to where God may lead us, but for now that’s where we’re at with it.

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6. We became debt free.

About 3 years ago we were making steady progress on student loans and a career starter loan we had through the Air Force to buy a car, but some friends (thankfully) still convinced us to participate in a Financial Peace University class through our church, and it honestly changed our lives. If you’ve never heard of FPU, it’s a Dave Ramsey course that helps you take control of your finances and plan better for your future, with a major emphasis on ridding yourself of debt. As a result from participating in this class, on our 3rd anniversary we hit submit for the final payment on the last bit of debt we had, and we haven’t looked back since. It’s been incredibly freeing to have a better handle on our finances and to see God’s faithfulness come through again and again as we’ve learned to trust him more to provide for us. Managing our finances has become a contributing factor to a more simplified life for us and I plan to share more of our journey here in the future.


7. I’m still digging minimalism & I finally dove into the world of capsule wardrobes. 

I started to share my growing interest in minimalism and a more simplified wardrobe when I first started this blog, and that interest has remained steady over the past few years. While I’m no full-blown textbook minimalist (if there is such a thing), the concepts and perspectives stemming from this “trend” have significantly impacted the way I approach life. Honestly, this is going to be a major thread within this blog’s future and I’m so excited to dive deeper into it all with you.

A pretty significant way I’ve furthered myself into minimalism in the past few years is that I finally implemented the use of a capsule wardrobe. Not sure what that is? In short, it is a more curated wardrobe within your overall wardrobe made up of a select number of items that you wear for a season, while abstaining from the rest to make better use of the clothes you own. This winter I’m on my 11th capsule and while I’m no style expert (nor do I want to be) there is so much I have learned. This is absolutely a topic I intend to unfold more with you all because it has been a game changer for me, so I am equally excited to explore this topic with you all in the time to come.


8. We love the mountains.

As I mentioned earlier, our new home in Cheyenne has planted us a hop, skip, and a jump away from the Rocky Mountains. My love and appreciation for mountains really ignited back when we moved from CA to ND as we passed through so many beautiful places (like Tahoe and Yellowstone), so when we found out we were moving here my heart skipped a beat knowing that I’d have the chance to explore more of this magnificent terrain (especially after three years in a flat land). This summer we spent quite a bit of time getting outside and acquainting ourselves with the mountains and surrounding areas, and I sure can’t wait to do it more. I’ve found that the mountains make me come alive and point me to God in ways like nothing else. I love them, and you definitely will get to see some peeks (pun intended) into our adventures in the days to come.

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9. We’ve done a small bit of traveling.

Between trips to visit back home, some weekend trips, and one longer vacation to Denver back before we knew we would be living closer to it, we’ve spent a fair bit of time in a car. We’ve gotten to familiarize ourselves with some new places – some just the two of us, and some with friends. I do plan to revisit some of those memories here to share about them in case you might be interested in checking out any of the places we have visited. We have been saving up for a bigger vacation for awhile now, but can’t seem to decide where we want to go, so we’ll see what comes of it. Until then, we are enjoying the explorations we’ve had of places both familiar and entirely new.


10. We love escape rooms.

On a cold winter day just shy of two years ago, we attempted the new escape room in Minot for a date on a whim. If you aren’t familiar with what an escape room is, it is essentially a themed room full of puzzles that you have to solve in order to complete some sort of objective (typically involving escaping the room). Twenty rooms later, I suppose you can say that we got hooked. It has been an absolute blast giving our brains the mental exercise as we have taken on a variety of rooms both locally and when we travel, and it’s especially satisfying to have a pretty successful escape record. It’s our favorite way to spend a date night together, and it’s also been fun to introduce others to the experience too.

Well, if you’ve stuck around up to this point, thanks for hanging in there. It’s no easy task to review three years in a blog post. Obviously there is so much more that happened in that time, but this list seems to cover the major highlights. And it also sets the stage for some of what is to come here on The Pruim Life. This blog is, in fact, a space for me to share our lives with you, so I look forward to diving deeper into some of these details and topics, and all that God has been teaching us/me through them. It sure does feel good to be back in this space, so thanks for reading along with me.

I hope you all have a great weekend!

moving day


I’ve hinted and mentioned here and there that we are moving again in some recent posts, but I’ve left out all of the details because I figured I’d give you all the whole story at one time. Now that today is our move in day, I suppose it is a better time than ever to explain.

Moving wasn’t exactly something I was used to in my life. I grew up in the same room in the same house for the entirety of my childhood, teenage years, and even into college. I first experienced what moving felt like when I moved back and forth each year for college. But even that felt partial as I left so much at home, and would return again.

Then I got married & everything changed. In our 2 years and 4 months of being married we have lived in 4 different homes. And now we’re moving on to number five. And the interesting part of this move is that it is completely unnecessary in comparison to the rest of our moves. We’re not leaving town, we’re not being mandated by the military to go anywhere, our lease isn’t even up yet. In actuality we’re moving down the street – it’s a long street, but it’s still the same street nonetheless. So what’s the story?

Well, first and foremost, I desperately (is that word too dramatic for this?) want a smaller house. To explain a little more, let me take you back to when we first arrived in Minot last October.

To make a long story short, when we arrived here there was a shortage of houses on base specifically for Adam’s rank, so in order to get into a house sooner rather than later we were offered a house to rent that would be on the larger end of a rank below him. We were fine with this at the time because we had already spent a month sleeping on a deflating air mattress in our friend’s apartment and we were ready to have a home of our own. As we moved in we realized quickly just how big our house was. We’re currently living in a 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath house with more square footage than I have ever had in my entire life. Here’s a problem with that: The amount of belongings we had when we moved in was enough to fill a small one bedroom apartment. Even with everything we owned inside our home, it still echoed. In the 10 months we’ve been here we still have multiple rooms sitting empty, with no use other than to collect dust.

It didn’t help that in the months prior to moving to North Dakota I went all giddy on minimalism and was trying to live with less. And here I was, put inside this giant house, with what felt like the little belongings we had and I was terrified to fill it. Because I knew I’d want to. But at the same time I didn’t want to. I’ve fought hard against the temptation to buy ALL the things.

Here’s another problem: There’s two of us and a dog. We’re using this giant house for our small family & it just feels wasteful. A family with children could much better benefit from this home, and I feel like we’re taking that away from someone. I enjoy having space to host people, but this is just too much for day to day living.

So, with all of that in mind we wanted to seek options to move. With the summer being a busy time on base for people PCSing, we wanted to take advantage of houses that were available. Towards the end of the summer we were able to discuss our options with housing. Through this process we were offered a house in an area that we have multiple friends living around, which is exactly what we wanted. We’re having to pay a little extra to break our lease early, but with the houses we were eyeing being available now, it’s worth it to us in case there are no houses available come late November. Plus, who wants to willingly move with cold & snow? Not me.


All that to say, today is our official move in date. We have a week to move all of our stuff from one house to the other, and then clean like we never have before our closing date next Friday. I’m incredibly excited to change things up, to feel like our home fits us better, to decorate and organize everything all over again, and to be a few minutes closer to friends. It’s been a rather smooth process with a little bit of waiting on our end, but I’m looking forward to what’s in store for us in this next chapter of life.

catching up // summer 2015 (part two)

So I’ve had a chance to tell you about all the traveling that took place over our 2015 summer season, but there has been a whole lot of day to day life going on too, and that has been just as significant to my summer. Here’s some updates of what else has been going on.

Prior to Adam leaving for California for the summer, we started checking out a new church as we hadn’t really felt settled in a decision with one yet. After just a couple visits we made the decision to stick with this new-to-us one, and it has made a wonderfully beautiful difference in our lives. It is unbelievable the difference that a solid, Jesus following, bible teaching, community building church can make in our lives. We’ve been meeting new people and making more friends – both military and non military; both younger and older. & it has been entirely life giving & is an answer to prayer for us. Fun story: You want to know how small the world is? A couple in our small group went to the same college as two of my cousins, so in the midst of small talk I asked if they might know either of them. Turns out the guy was one of my cousin’s roommates for 3 years. Mind BLOWN.

Speaking of people, we’ve been blessed upon blessed with the people we’ve been building relationships with. It might be the military life that brings together some solidarity, but we’ve got such a solid community going on lately that only seems to be growing. Game nights, and pool time, and dinners, and impromptu trips have all filled up both weeknights and weekends in our schedule and it’s been all kinds of great. God sure has known all along exactly what our hearts & souls needed when we came here.





Work has been steadily busy for me over the past few months. I’m working part time, yet sometimes it feels full time with how packed my schedule gets sometimes. Overall, it’s been a solid balance of working and investing in the youth in our community through our program, while still investing in the relationships in my personal life.

During the spring time I felt God pushing me towards the idea of starting up a Bible study. At the time we hadn’t really settled with a church yet, but even if we had I felt this need and desire to practically and personally pour into some of the women in my life. I toyed with the idea for months before I finally buckled down and got it off the ground. I’ve been involved with plenty of bible studies in the past, but I’ve never really been in a role before where I’ve led one and let me tell you, it’s been challenging me in all the right ways. I’ve learned that it is much more complicated to speak about what I believe than it is to think about it. I can make sense of it all in my head, but then make me use my own words and I have to work a whole lot harder. It’s been humbling. But it’s been motivating to really work at this. To really learn to communicate the gospel well. I think that’s my biggest fear and insecurity when it comes to teaching/leading: I want to represent Jesus well. I don’t want to mislead someone by explaining things incorrectly. So I’ve been combating that with trying to lean into the Spirit and letting God speak for Himself, while also soaking in more understanding of who God is so that I can all the more better express that understanding.

My favorite holiday of the year happens over the summer…fourth of July. We celebrated it over the span of two days, because Adam and another friend of ours were out working the day of. So the fourth itself was a low key day with a couple friends, cooking out, and sitting in a truck bed at the top of a hill to see some fireworks. The fifth was a bit more festive for us with patriotic clothes, a potluck dinner (with homemade strawberry ice cream), and sparklers. A holiday well spent for sure.

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Dairy Queen made my sing for joy this summer when they made the smartest decision they probably ever have and brought cotton candy blizzards back to their menu – for how long I am not sure – so you better believe that I have been filling my stomach with that sugary goodness as often as possible. I’m personally hoping that my constant orders of them at our local DQ will make them keep it on the menu forever & ever & ever.

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Guys, NoDak summers. Let me tell you. They’re MAGICAL. Okay, that might be a bit dramatic. But for real though, I have been having all kinds of heart eyes for our summer weather here. By midsummer, the sun didn’t go down until 10-10:30pm. ALL KINDS OF SUNLIGHT. Rain has been fairly minimal. It makes appearances here and there, but usually passes after an hour or two. Just enough for me to get a summer storm fix. Not enough to keep the grass fully green though. That’s been unfortunate, but overall I’ve been so content. And the temperatures. Oh it’s been glorious. 80s. 90s. 100s even. It’s been HOT. Yet, the humidity is minimal and I can breathe. Such a beautiful contrast to the cold that will be coming over the long winter. Seriously, friends and family, come visit us next summer and lets frolic through the sunflower fields & sit by the pool day all day, erry day.


Speaking of sitting by the pool, I was able to do plenty of that this summer with a pool right on base. Either alone or with friends, it was a short hop over to the pool to soak up some sun. And because I don’t like to waste time, I would utilize that time to read. As a result I’ve been able to finish quite a few books this summer. I love reading. I just don’t always take the time to do it. So I was not only glad to work on getting a decent tan this summer, but I was glad to have some time set aside to really dive into some solid books. I’m thinking of a post in the near future of some of my most recent favorite reads. What do you think?

Other random summer highlights include: the Blackhawks winning the Stanley cup, getting back into the swing of playing tennis, seeing Keith Urban at the North Dakota State Fair, and celebrating multiple birthdays – including my own.

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Probably our biggest news coming out of the summer (no we’re not pregnant) is that were moving. Again. Why oh why would we ever decide to make an unnecessary move after 4 moves in two years? Well…I’m going to leave you hanging here and save that explanation for another day. But I’ll tell you about it reallll soon. I promise.

One thing I won’t leave you hanging with though: puppy pictures. Because Boone is just a light in our life and he never stops making me smile.


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I think that leaves you all caught up on life for us over the past couple months. Summer 2015 was a season full of settling in, having fun, and persevering through. & now that it’s September I can officially be excited about the upcoming fall season. Thanks for checking in everyone!

catching up // summer 2015 (part one)

With an unintentional silence on the Pruim Life this summer, I have a lot to catch you all up on. So before I get all carried away with all the fall feels I’ve been feeling, let’s take a look back to this summer. Because I’m still soaking up every warm day we’re getting while I can. Here’s some of what we’ve been up to with our travels this summer:

We kicked off our summer with a week long visit from my parents. We spent most of their time here relaxing, hanging out, and showing them our everyday lives, but my mom and I did get a chance to go visit our local zoo. Don’t let sizes fool you – for being such a small zoo, there was much greater opportunity to get close to some of the animals. We were pretty impressed. Although we did almost get attacked by squirrels that were stealing food from some bunnies.


When my parents packed their car to head back home, I packed mine along with them to caravan back to Illinois for a very brief, last minute planned trip home. One of my friends has been teaching in Africa this past year, and she came home for a couple weeks this summer to visit, so I made plans to drive to see her the same time one of our other friends was flying in from Nebraska (#collegereunion). Typically our trips home are jam-packed with fitting in as many loved ones as possible, & I’m usually quite impressed by the amount of people we’re able to see, even if my sleep schedule severely suffers. But this trip was a little more low-key as I kept it mostly to myself – granted my sleep schedule still suffered. I knew that I’d be back in a couple weeks anyways, so I just focused on spending time with a few family members and Hannah & Taryn. Highlights include: a throwback sleepover with two of my cousins, a perfectly made cotton candy blizzard, game night with a few extended family members, a day in the sun with all of my cousins’ little boys, roasting strawberries covered in marshmallow fluff & Nutella over the stove top at Hannah’s sister’s house, & of course just spending good ol’ quality time to catch up with each and every person I saw.



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Our biggest summer plans were completely shaken up due to Adam getting offered an opportunity to go back out to California for work (super exciting) for 5 weeks (not so exciting). It just so happened that he would leave the week that we had planned to go home for our friends’ wedding. So right at the beginning of July I dropped him off at the airport and then hit the road with Boone the following day to still make the trip home – just for a shorter period of time. It was a perfectly timed trip in the sense that I was able to keep my mind off Adam being gone for a little while. So while home I spent a whole lot of time catching up with some of my favorites and celebrating the next chapter of two dear friends’ lives.

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My last big trip of the summer was yet again a last minute planned adventure. About 2 days before Adam was leaving, we toyed with the idea for me to come visit. We found a reasonably priced fare for a perfectly carved out time frame for me to go visit him for a few days to break up the time we had to spend apart. Hashtag worth it.

Adam was staying at the same base that we were living at this time last year, so while I was there we visited some of the spots that we frequented before. We watched dolphins at Pismo beach, got lunch and a salted caramel pretzel milkshake at Hoagie’s, went paddleboarding for the first time in Santa Barbara, and window shopped along State Street. I also took advantage of our time in Cali to get some food that we don’t have access to in Minot. (What up In-N-Out, Chipotle, & Chick-fil-a!). My stomach was certainly well pleased.

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It was exciting to mix it up and spend a couple days back in California; to “getaway” with the hubs; to see the ocean and the mountains again; to revisit the place we were living last year. But I’m honestly so content with our life where we’re at, so it was good to come home. And it was SO SO SO good to have Adam join me back home about a week after I left.

For those who aren’t familiar with Adam and I’s story, we spent the majority of our dating relationship long distance. By majority, I mean about 4 out of the 5 years. We’ve been there. We were well prepared for this brief time apart. But that doesn’t make it any more enjoyable – a little more manageable maybe, but in no way, shape, or form preferred – especially now that we’re married. I tried so hard not to be dramatic about it. There are families that go so much longer being separated. Especially in the military. There are families that have to conquer deployments that last much longer, and are much riskier. I have so much respect and empathy for the people who have to deal with that. So I did my best to remind myself of that throughout the weeks we spent apart. I just missed my best friend. We do have some pretty awesome friends that were sure to take care of me though, and they spent plenty of intentional time hanging out with me while he was gone.

It is just so, so good to have him back and be able to establish our “normal” again. Now that he’s home I sometimes fight off the urge to wrap my arms around him and never let go. Then again, sometimes I don’t. Boone was thrilled to have his daddy back too. I wasn’t there to witness it, but apparently he stuck his head between Adam’s legs and cried for a good 5 minutes when Adam walked through the door.

So all in all, we ended up having more travels in our summer than we initially planned this year, but it gave us quite an adventure. For the sake of time and space, I’ll save the rest of the details of our summer for another day, so tune in later this week for all the in-between, everyday stuff.

How about you…where did you travel to this summer?

another year older

I’m well aware that it’s been pretty quiet around these parts over the summer, but I’ll catch you all up to speed soon on what’s been happening in the real life Pruim life. The latest news? Today marks the start of my 24th year of life. Yep, it’s my birthday. In the days leading up to today I’ve been looking back on this past year and I kind of can’t believe everything that has happened. 23 in theory isn’t anything uniquely special, but I suppose no one’s 23rd year of life is quite the same. Mine was a pretty eventful one, that’s for sure. So for memories’ sake, here’s a look back at some of the highlights:

my 23rd year

In my 23rd year I have…

…road tripped 5 times to cover 9 states (some of which were repeats).

…flown on 19 flights. My stomach sure will be thankful for a lesser number in year 24.

…visited Yellowstone National Park, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Redwoods, the Mall of America, and Cozumel – just to name some biggies.

…crossed off my all time number one bucket list dream and swam with dolphins.

…lived in 3 different homes – and for some crazy reason we’re in the process of moving again…but more on that later 🙂

…survived one North Dakota winter.

…missed out on 4 weddings back home, but still managed to make it to 2.

…lost approximately 7 pounds. It’s been a struggle. Consistency sure does takes commitment.

…started a blog.

…celebrated 2 years of marriage.

…loved every second of being a mama to the sweetest little puppy dog ever.

…experienced the heaviness of homesickness, but also the joy & peace of embracing exactly where God wants us to be.

…praised God for his provision and sovereignty, because He has proved Himself faithful time & time again this year.

…really taken to heart the call to make disciples, and have put some words and thoughts to actions because of it.

Is it too cheesy to say, “what a year 23 has been!”? I hope not, because that’s how I feel. It has by far been my most traveled year of life. But it’s also been chaotic and messy and adventurous. It’s been challenging and formative and enlightening.

I’m at the age where when I was younger I thought life really began. You go through school, and maybe through college, and work towards making a life for yourself. It was always impressed upon me to think about my future. But now I’m in that future. The truth is, my life began 24 years ago today. And every little second has contributed to who I am and where I am right in this moment. I’ll be honest, I constantly – like seriously, constantly – am marveling over how strange “growing up” and “being an adult” is. It’s weird. It’s good weird. But it’s weird. Those of you who have lived more life than me, does it ever get less weird? Maybe I’ll feel more normal if it doesn’t. Maybe I’ll feel more settled if it does. I’m okay with getting older, I really am. It’s just one of those phenomenons in life that doesn’t fully get comprehended. I’m in this stage of gaining understanding, but not having all the pieces of the puzzle yet. One day it’ll all make sense. Maybe.

I’m reminded of something one of my favorite blogger’s said back in February when she turned 30 and was reflecting on the weirdness of growing up too: “Getting older is not about feeling different. It’s not about putting on a new look or changing who you are. As experience has shown, we pretty much feel the same. We just grow. We gain experiences. We carry who we were into the next year and the year after that. We’re a little taller, maybe. We’re a little rounder, maybe. We have different tastes, maybe. But we’re us. Exactly us.”

So I start this 24th year with arms wide open. Because in all honesty, I have no other logical choice. Here’s to growing. Here’s to experiencing. Here’s to growing up.

a picture is worth a thousand words

I think it’s true. There are so many things that can be said about a picture. Pictures have memories, and stories, and emotions attached to them. They can stir up something in us. At least I know that’s the case for me. In high school, and through a lot of college, more often than not I could be found with my camera at hand. Nothing fancy – just a point and shoot. But I always had it. I kept it around to capture the memories so that one day I could look back and remember as much as possible about my life. & then share those memories with others. That is the inspiration for this new series. I want to take hold of the opportunity to share memories, and stories, and emotions with you. Because it all makes up my story. It all makes up who I am today. The truth is, this series could go on forever. I have a whole lot of pictures. So I’m planning on this being an ongoing occurrence here at The Pruim Life. I look forward to digging through some oldies, but oh so goodies to give you a greater glimpse into my life. So here’s the first installment.

the pumpkin olympicsThe Pumpkin Olympics

This picture is one for the history books in my life for more reasons than I ever could have dreamed of on the night that it was taken. Let me tell you why…

This was a Wednesday night in the fall of what I think was 2004. It was the first and only time that I ever attended the junior high youth group as a student at my would-be church. You see, in my junior high years, my parents were getting my brother and me plugged back into the Lutheran church that they had attended once upon a time, so I spent most of my Wednesday nights at confirmation classes. But this one random Wednesday night that was probably in my eighth grade year, I didn’t have confirmation class; and for some reason I didn’t have school the next day either. As a result, I made plans to sleepover at my cousins’ house. Before I went to their house for the night though, we went to their church (which I had already visited on occasion for the Sunday services) for some of the student ministries. Jordi was helping out at the children’s ministry and Matt was going to the junior high youth group, so I had the choice to either help out with Jordi, or tag along with Matt for the event of the night: the Pumpkin Olympics. The picture shows the choice I made. Since I didn’t know anyone, I stuck to Matt (the brunette boy next to me in the photo) like glue as the night went by, which meant I was on an olympic team with all boys. That didn’t bother me. In fact, I remember secretly thinking to myself that I felt super cool for being the only girl with all the boys. I also remember during one of the events saying that I wanted to be the representative of the team to shot put a pumpkin because “girls are strong too”. They were troopers and let me do my thing, but I can humbly admit now that I was not, in fact, as strong as the boys and did not throw the pumpkin very far. I remember the youth pastor, Jason, drop kicking a pumpkin for the “opening ceremony” while wearing shorts & knee high socks. I remember having to roll a pumpkin across a field with my head – ya know, the kind of thing that only junior highers do. Otherwise, the rest of the details of this night are a bit of a blur.

But despite the haziness, this night was still monumental. Because God had so much in store for me as a result of it that I was completely unaware of at the time. Let me just point out how:

I didn’t know that within the two years following these pumpkin olympics, this non denominational church would become my home church. I didn’t know that my life would drastically change as a result of attending and getting plugged into this church in high school. I didn’t know that this night would be a wide open door in my path to meeting Jesus for real.

I didn’t know that years after this picture was taken I would be a leader in the same ministry that I was attending as a student that night. I didn’t know that I would serve under the leadership of the same youth pastor that wore shorts and knee high socks & drop kicked a pumpkin. And I didn’t know that he would not only become my own youth pastor my senior year of high school, but that he, and his wife, would also become mentors and dear friends.

I didn’t know that down the road I would regularly see most of these boys every Sunday at the high school youth group, instead of this junior high one. I didn’t know that literally half of these boys would become such good friends that they are still a part of my life to this day. In fact, I didn’t know that two of the boys in this picture would stand in my wedding – one of them being the best man.

Because my favorite part of this story is that I didn’t know that I met my husband on this night. Yep, that adorable blondie in the orange sweater is my now hubby. I didn’t know that neither he nor I would remember that we met before we thought we met. Because our first real memories of meeting each other happened later on within the next year of this picture being taken. In fact, no one believed me (minus my cousin) that I even existed on this night until Jason found this picture in his archives years later and I could prove every doubter wrong.

You see, this picture is incredibly sweet to me because it is the perfect representation of Christ’s provision in my life – in all of our lives. At a mere 13(ish) years old, I had no clue that this picture, this night, would represent so many giant factors of my life as an adult. Every time I look at this, I can’t help but smile at the ways that God has worked things out (after I laugh to myself at how ridiculous I, my husband, and our friends all look in all of our awkward junior high glory).

This picture is full of memories. It’s full of then-future, now-present meaningful relationships. To prove it to you, here’s a shot from our best man’s wedding this past October. The junior high version of the three on the left can be found above.


& here’s one of me and present day Matt

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Sometimes God is at work in our lives in ways that we don’t realize until we look back after time has passed and we see his hand prints all over them. The picture from the pumpkin olympics is full of God’s invisible hand already at work in all of our lives. & boy am I glad to have this keepsake to always remember it by.

catching up // vol. 5

I’ve been distant these past weeks as I’ve been letting life happen, so I figured it was time I give all you friends and family an update of what’s going on in the real life Pruim life. Here’s just a glimpse of what we’ve been up to:


As I’ve already alluded to on here, at the end of March we visited Cozumel, Mexico with the entire Pruim family. All 12 of us traveled together for a week of relaxation and quality family time. Despite some travel sickness and stomach bugs that affected half of the family, and some days of rain and clouds, we still enjoyed perfect temps, poolside days, and an overabundance of quesadillas for the nephews.


Some highlights for everyone included snorkeling, exploring at the beach (per our littlest nephew’s daily requests), massages, seeing (a much plumper version of) Elvis, zip lining, trampolines, and a giant poolside foam party that lasted an entire hour.

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The biggest highlight of the trip for me though: My number one bucket list dream finally came true when Adam and I had the opportunity to swim with dolphins. Not only that, but we got to pet, hold, kiss, shake fins with, and be pushed by them too. Guys, I felt like a little kid in a candy store times a million, as can be evidenced by how much I’m cheesin’ in half of our pictures.

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Overall, it was such a blessing to be able to escape some cold weather and spend time with family that we don’t get to see as often anymore. It makes me incredibly thankful for the family I’ve gained through my marriage. This trip was also an opportunity to squeeze in a quick visit with my fam when we flew into Chicago. We take up every little opportunity we can to see as many people as possible.


About two weeks after adjusting back to normal life the Blaneys came to visit us for a weekend. (You might remember that we went to visit them for Thanksgiving in Minneapolis). Most of their time here was spent relaxing and catching up on life. We also took our pups to the dog park, taught them to play Euchre, gave them a tour of the town (or at least of what we know of it so far), grabbed dinner at our favorite local restaurant, and dropped in for a quick visit to the #1 recommended “thing to do” in Minot according to Trip Advisor: visit the Dala Horse at the Scandinavian Heritage Association.

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We’re thankful for friends that are willing to come visit a not so appealing state just to spend some time with us. It makes us all the more grateful for their friendship. And it also allows us the chance to utilize the extra space we have in our home to host others here. Our Pruim hotel is open for booking now for anyone that wants to come for a visit 😉

Outside of those major highlights, we’ve been living a whole lot of daily life.

Around here…we’ve been soaking up the sun that comes with the spring weather. Temperatures have been on a significant incline as the weeks go by, and although we’re always warned to never get our hopes too high here at this time of year, we’re loving each 60-70 degree day that we get. Taking Boone out for fetch or for walks around the neighborhood, running outside instead of on a treadmill, and opening the windows for some fresh air are just a few ways I’ve been spending the nice days outside.

Around here…I’ve been finding my groove with work. Our biggest fundraiser of the year is now over and was a huge success. So lately I’ve been honing in on more of my direct job responsibilities. It’s felt busy, but still good.

Around here…Adam and I are officially the same age for 4 whole months. Here’s to not having to give the explanation that being 8 months older than him does not qualify me to be a cougar or a cradle robber. We celebrated him simply, as is fitting for him, with dinner and DQ with some friends, and plenty of family quality time. (Big news of the month: our local DQ informed me when we went there that cotton candy blizzards will be making a return this summer. I unashamedly squealed with joy when I found out).

Around here…Adam has been keeping himself occupied with work, and now with school. He’s taking some classes that specifically compliment his field of work, so he’s learning new things and being challenged all the same.

Around here…Boone is better than ever. He entertains us daily and gives us more and more reasons to love him. He has this constant desire to lick all the things and let his tongue hang out the side of his mouth. Trust me, he’s getting plenty of water. He’s just weird. And we laugh at him all the time for it. But getting him outside more often has been great for giving him some exercise, improving his fetching skills, and wearing him out to exhaustion. As of late, we discovered he is fascinated by construction equipment as he sat outside in the yard for two days and watched a bobcat drive back and forth past our yard. He’s weird, I know. But we can’t get enough of him.

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Around here…we’ve been cheering on the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup playoffs. With our lack of cable, we haven’t been able to catch many games throughout the year, but Adam’s NBC app has full playoff coverage that we can hook up to the tv. Thankfully Adam has plenty of Blackhawks gear to wear for all the days they play.

Around here…we’ve unfortunately been battling a stomach bug. First me, now Adam. Thankfully it’s made it’s pass through me and it’s about done with Adam too. We’ll both be back to tip top shape before we know it.

Around here…we’re still wrapping our minds around the greatness that is The Avengers: Age of Ultron. We went to see it early last night for it’s premiere and not a single ounce of me was disappointed. In fact, every ounce of me was utterly impressed. Please, do yourself a favor and head over to the nearest movie theater immediately, buy yourself a ticket, and let your mind be blown. So. Much. Greatness.

Around here…we’re just living life daily. Letting opportunities for fellowship and community come up as they do and embracing free time when we have it. We have a nice life here in North Dakota and I really do love it more than I ever thought I would.

So now, let’s catch up. What have you been up to?

letting life happen


Well March came, and March went. And April has come and we’re already a week in. And I’ve been nowhere to be found on this space. To be honest, there were a couple times this month that I sat down to put something together for a post, but the publish button never got pushed. And it’s not that I haven’t had anything to say. It’s just that I’ve been simply living.

Nothing extravagant has been going on (minus our recent vacation to Mexico, but I consider that an exception). I’ve simply been working, maintaining the house, working out, building relationships, and spending quality time with my husband and pup. And this past month, that was enough for me to manage. Everything was steady. It was simple. It felt peaceful. And so each time I sat at the computer and typed out some of my thoughts, all that came out was words expressing my desire to just be living life and utilizing the time in my days to the best of my abilities (I can thank the gorgeous weather at the beginning of the month for that inspiration – where that weather is now I’m not so sure). It’s not that blogging isn’t worth my time. I love having this space and I look forward to seeing it grow in the time to come as I find new and better ways to invest in it. But this past month it was nice to take the break and just let life happen. To take the moments as they came and experience them fully. To not overwhelm myself with too much on my plate, especially with my new job. To enjoy the simple evenings of sitting next to Adam on the couch or tossing a ball around with Boone. To take advantage of the few spring weather days we’ve had so far and get outside more. To soak in the opportunities to invest in relationships, both near and far. It was all worth it.

As we’re already a week into April, I’m excited to get things rolling again around here. I have a month’s worth of life to catch you all up on. I have overdue words to share with you. I have a new series to continue in. But I also am giving myself the grace and the wiggle room to deal with life as it happens. I’m not a full time blogger, so I feel comfortable giving myself that slack at this time. But know that I care about sharing the words that I do with you here. And therefore I don’t want to give you second rate stuff. It’s just that sometimes the quality I aim for takes a little more time. So be patient with me. And trust that there is more to come soon.

Until then…