Tag Archives: Fire

Looking Back – 1 Year ago

It was a day much like today, we didn’t know how much our world could change within minutes but it did.  One year ago today marks the anniversary of the fire that destroyed our home.

Night of the Fire. I remember William yelling back to the bedroom, get Cody and Get Out! I grabbed my phone (nightstand), boots (closest shoes to the door), and ran to get Cody and his one little blankie and met William and Nora outside. Scariest Night of my Life.


Well lets not focus too much on the past, I think it is important to always remember the past but not to dwell on it.  A couple months after the fire we had really begun the research process of house building (again…ugh), someone asked me, “When do you expect to be in the new house?”  Mind you, we hadn’t even decided on plans yet.  I replied, “September, the end of September.”  I was just positive that we could get it done (also I was positive that The Rancher and I both had superhuman powers to accomplish all that had to be done between my job, the ranch, the house, kids and everything else).  Well, needless to say, The Rancher caught wind of my new timeline for him and informed me there was, “No way in h*ll that we would be able to get that done.”

POP! phewwwwwwww! – – – that is my ballon (the only sense of sanity I had) being popped right then and there.

Valentine’s Day 2014 – In Bismarck after the fire. Grandma Gerry got the kids Balloons


So new goals were set, and I said to The Rancher – NO MATTER WHAT, WE WILL BE LIVING IN THE NEW HOUSE WITHIN A YEAR.   AH HA!  There was an attainable goal, and we did it!

PicMonkey Collage
And it is everything we could have hoped for! A lot of hard work, but it is ours – build by us, designed by us, live in by us!


Now I keep promising you all a video tour, and I keep trying I really do.  But let me be completely honest.  There is no way with my two toddlers, husband and the mud we are dealing with that I can even attempt to make the whole house clean at one time.  (Unless someone wants to volunteer to babysit the kids at their house :P).  So, I will be working on getting pictures (and good ones at that), for all of our supporters, family, friends to see the house.  We are expecting lots of visitors this summer so be sure to put us on our vacation plans!

Bunkhouse Living Reflection 1

While most people will hopefully never have to live in a one room house (Walton style) with their family for nearly a year, I want to share a few things I have learned in the year we spent as a family of 4 in a space with one wall – to separate the bathroom.  **Sidenote – – Now that I reflect on that one wall, really what was the point, with a 2 and 3 year old do you ever get alone time in the bathroom, absolutely NOT!**

Anyway a few tips on bunkhouse living:

Keep It Simple.  I’m talking about everything – DSC07957

keep your cooking simplified, the less ingredients the better,

DSC07956keep your clothes thinned down, after a house fire, not that big of a deal right?  Wrong – we were so fortunate to be gifted oodles of clothing, we kept what fit and donated the rest back to the less fortunate in the area.

TOYS – are your worst enemy and your best friend.  Buy a few organizers and try (key word TRY) to teach your littles to cleanup, only get one to  y at a time, etc.

Storage – there is none – meaning create your own, pinterest will be your best friend, as will under your bed (make sure you get some bed frames so you have that handy area to throw things

Patience.  Keep working on being patient.DSC07610

When the kids can’t handle not having their own space – send them outside, 0 degree, snowing, raining, beautiful out, doesn’t matter, dress them up and send them out for a few minutes to play and get that energy out.

Same for the Husband.

Hell, same for you! Probably most important for the matriarch of the family to keep her own sanity.  Somehow, find 2 minutes to be by yourself – shower, eat a piece of chocolate, drink a glass of wine (don’t relax when you do this, you will never get through it, drink it like you mean it).

  • IMG_4004Love.  Find love in everything.
    • I learned that I love to just be outside listening to the kids talk to the cattle, horses, dogs, cats, anything that moves.

I learned to love those you don’t even know, help those who need it, even if it is just sending some clothes their way, a smile, a friendly hello. Love.

    • Love the livestock that keep you sane as you get to ride through them to check for lameness.
    • Love the fact that without this experience you wouldn’t know how strong you are.


Prozac.  Oh yes, that nice little pill that mellows a person out.

    • FullSizeRenderSome will never say they need it, some may rely on it, some need it but won’t take it.
    • I went to the doctor about 3 weeks after the fire, still having tears running down my face, uncontrollable mood swings and I was a complete wreck.  I told him about everything and said I need prozac and birth control ASAP!  He completely obliged and was so helpful.
    • After a year I have slowly quit the old prozac and realize that there are times in your life you need help, prayers are always good, but sometimes it just isn’t enough, so “Hey Doc – hand over the good stuff” 🙂
    • Some people will read this and think wow – she is talking about being on an antidepressant.  I hope that no one ever feels ashamed, sad, or anything of the sort if they need that extra help, I certainly don’t have any problems with it and you shouldn’t either!

It is much easier to reflect on bunkhouse living while having a few minutes at the end of your day where it is just you to relax, write, and remember how far you have come in just one year!

Wishing you a very Happy Superbowl Sunday!  Go Broncos!  Oh wait – – –

Broncos Fans