>With some fellow students and teachers I went on the annual “Bike Hike” sponsored by Science Club. My borrowed bike was definitely half the size it should have been, forcing my legs to work much harder, but honestly I probably needed the workout! All in all I think we rode about 16 miles round trip.

Here’s a map of the full trail:

We went from Lock 14, I think, to Starved Rock State Park.

Here are a couple pics in case you haven’t seen them on Photobucket:

View of the I & M Canal from the trail

Sunlight through the trees at Starved Rock

View from Starved Rock

Group of everyone, except one of my coworkers who took the pic. I’m the one on the left in all navy who is a teacher but looks like a high-school student.

Thought I’d post an update! Have a great rest of the week.


>This week is the last week of the first quarter of the school year. I honestly cannot believe it’s been three months since I posted last! So much has happened.

In September I went on a hike at Forest Park and got some great pictures of emerging fall colors.

The school year is going so well and I am so proud of my students. I have 105 this year; last year I had only 84. Here are a couple pics of a project second year recently did where they had to write an “article” reviewing a local restaurant.

Aaron’s still in training, of course, at Huachuca. He seems to be enjoying it, although his classes are pretty easy for him. Currently I am very jealous of the weather they’re having out there; while I’m freezing my rump off here in central Illinois, he’s enjoying 80* weather.

He flew home for Labor Day weekend. Contrary to popular belief, we pay for all transportation home for weekends and breaks. The only transportation we do not pay for is when we PCS, or change duty stations (Permanent Change of Station). Yes, the Army uses acronyms as verbs. Haha. Anyway. I picked him up from the airport on the Friday before Labor Day as I had taken the day off from work. Saturday we had lots of friends and family over for a cookout which went really well. We had lots of food left over, which was wonderful. Sunday we went to church and then out to eat at our favorite place in Peoria, Double A’s. Monday he flew back to Arizona.

I didn’t get any pictures as I was busy visiting and clinging tightly to my husband. Haha. My mom sent me these.

My grandpa and my dad (they don’t look anything alike, do they?)

My soldier and me, how we’ve changed over the past six years.

It’s been over a month since we’ve seen each other, but I feel like our relationship has never been better. Currently we’re doing The Love Dare. Every night we read the “devotion” out loud (I put it in quotation marks because it’s not really a Bible study or Bible devotion) and then do the dare the next day. So far, I’ve sent him a blanket, hot chocolate and marshmallows, a book and other little things. He sent me flowers and I received them at work… they were absolutely gorgeous.

I am pressing and drying the flowers for some creative endeavor in the future. (Yes, that is my Starbucks coffee canister in the picture… I am moderately obsessed.) He also sent me some items from Bath and Body, including bubble bath. That’s his way of telling me to slow down and relax. 🙂

Well, six weeks from Thursday I will be flying out to Phoenix for a romantic Thanksgiving weekend with Aaron. He will be coming home to Illinois for two weeks at Christmas time, which the Army lovingly calls Exodus. All training stations close down for two weeks. Being a teacher is great since I have those two weeks off as well. We are looking forward to a relaxing and enjoyable break together.

I’m sure many of you have heard different things that I have been “planning” to do after this current school year; our plans are still up in the air, to say the least. We hope to get an idea of where he will be stationed in the next couple of months. Crossing my fingers.