May 27, 2013

Is it Friday Yet?

I am beyond ecstatic for Friday. Why you ask? Because then I will be united with my love, Coach Kemp! He has been in Toledo without his better half for almost three weeks… The first week was pretty smooth, I must attest that I have grown accustomed to multiple days solo with Jason’s coaching schedule. But, three long weeks has been a little too long in my books. So, I am glad that we will be able to spend a fun-filled week in our new city.

What do we have on our agenda? Hmm, I am not so sure but I am hoping that we are able to explore a few things like:

The Toledo Farmers’ Market

After living in Madison for five years, my expectations for farmers’ markets elevated substantially. Madison’s Market is pretty well-known and is set-up around the capitol square – making it even more of a sight; it is such an experience. I am looking forward to exploring the Downtown Toledo Farmers’ Market on Saturday. We do have a recruit visiting, but I am hoping that that is not a daylong endeavor.

42nd Annual Old West End Festival

In an effort to learn more about the various neighborhoods in Toledo, I think it would be fun to join the fun in the festival. From the Internet I learned that the Historic District is comprised of over 25 city blocks squared and hosts some of the finest architecture of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. During the festival, official events include house tours (love); a beer pavilion and food tent (for Coach Kemp); and a vendor’s alley! Sounds like a winner to me.

University of Toledo Campus & Athletic Facilities

Obviously this is a no brainer but I am enthused to see the wonderful Rocket Athletic facilities as well as the beautiful university campus. Perhaps, I will even be able to get a run or two in while there. Running is my favorite way to explore a new city, and university campuses tend to the safest locale for a novice in a city.

Dining Out

Jason has dined at a few Toledo local favorites, all of which he has raved about. I am thinking we will dine at a few of these joints over the week and explore some new ones.


May 20, 2013

Packing on my Brain

This morning I received the sweetest text from my mother which read: "I hope you enjoy your last working 'Monday' in Fargo, ND."

It would behoove me to admit that I have packing, boxes, and moving, in general, on my brains...

I have these types of materials not only in my office, but also in my house. If you follow me on Instagram, then you saw my recent picture post of my office. In the midst of all this craziness in the world of Team Kemp, I am also planning a statewide conference.

Honestly, a girl needs a break! When is my vacay?!?!

Whayyy, I want to cry like a baby since I have visions of my moving looking something like this:

 Fortunately, I will not have to actually load up or transport many items. Who am I kidding... A weeks worth of my clothes and necessities takes TWO large suitcases... The Venza, may indeed, look something like the picture above.

I know, I am such a drama queen.


May 19, 2013

Fargo Bucket List: Fargo Marathon Edition

I will be honest, I do not have a “bucket list” of things that I want to do before leaving Fargo, but there are a few things that I have not experienced while living in the state of North Dakota for 22 months. High on my list would be to experience/run the Fargo Marathon! Last year, I defended my dissertation and participated in the University of Wisconsin’s School of Education’s Hooding Ceremony and Commencement.

This year, I had planned to run the Madison Half Marathon for the third time, so I elected to be a spectator at the Fargo Marathon! Well, since Coach Kemp went off and got a new job :) my plans to run the Madison Half have been shot! I really wanted to run the race but I am not up for driving 8 hours, solo. Sorry, NOT A CHANCE!!! I am not too bummed because I have found a number of half marathons in northwestern Ohio and southeastern Michigan but have decided to not register for any one of them because our lives are a little hectic at this time, to say the least!!!

I was super ecstatic when I was invited to a Marathon Watch Party from a couple who attend Maximum Performance and Fitness’ MELT classes with Jason and I. Troy and Sydney have the cutest house ever. I need to go back and take pictures to post on pinterest. Ha, but seriously Sydney has done a wonderful job with the interior decorating, and Troy shared all his DIY handyman projects he’s completed through the years. Don’t worry Coach Kemp, I was not getting any ideas for you! Coach is more of “a hire someone else to handle the job” kind of person! Although he swears that he enjoys yard work, we shall see.

I woke at 6:00 am to run the 4.5 mile route from my place to their house. I think everyone thought I was kidding when I stated that I was planning to run to the party! So the night before, I prepped my CamelBak with my essentials (there was also lipgloss in the bag but is not pictured).
My run to their house was not too bad despite the rain. Some large person, I am assuming since I feel like they were hating on my early morning activity, purposely splashed me with a large puddle of water! I was not going to allow that to ruffle my feathers; I kept running, slightly more wet than necessary, and arrived to their place in one piece.  Hey, I knew I was going to have a few drinks so I figured it would be best to work it off before and after the party. The after party run was shortened a tad, obviously I wasn't as sober as I had gauged, so my total run from yesterday was a nice 7.5 miles.

What is so fun about the Fargo Marathon is that homes on the route can “host” bands…. Troy and Sydney, the cool couple that they are, of course had a band…

And a full out spread of food and drinks! Here is the Bloody Mary spread which Brad and Dustin perfected to a tee. They even made their own bacon and pepper vodka. They had various olives, pickles, spices… You name it; they brought it!

I am not much of a Bloody Mary drinker, but I did have a two mimosas - one with OJ and the other with grapefruit juice. Hey, at least I got my fruit in for the day. And, I also got my last Sandy’s donut!!!

I was most excited to cheer on a dear friend as she ran her first marathon! Although this was her first marathon, Steph is an avid runner whom has completed multiple half marathons. Did I mention that she is a momma to four, pharmacist, and married to a coach!!!! How she manages all of that, I have no idea, but I have realized that I have absolutely no excuses for not training for a full marathon myself. She is superwoman and always looks so put together while juggling it all. She is my mommy idol!!!

I was able to cheer her on at the Mile 5 mark as well as Mile 17. Here she is at Mile 17, although she did not spot me at this mile mark. She finished strong and I can’t wait to congratulate her in person.

The best part of the day happened while at Mile 17. I like to consider this a true act of kindness and generosity – giving the marathon runner beers! Who would not want a cold brewski when you have only 9 miles left in your race???

And, we had many takers. Here is the proof:

In all, the day was delightful! I had a blast cheering on the runners, meeting new people, and placing an experience in my Fargo Bucket List.

Congratulations to all those that ran in the Fargo Marathon races - 5k, 10k, half marathon, and marathon. Cheers to staying healthy and fit.


May 14, 2013

Kindness is Contagious: The Kemp Edition

For those of you residing in the Fargo/Moorhead, you may be familiar with Nicole Phillips, wife of Bison men’s head basketball coach Saul Phillips’, weekly columns in The Forum newspaper. Her weekly columns entitled, “Kindness is Contagious,” document different “acts” of kindness and generosity in an effort to showcase how joyful and caring “others” can be towards strangers or simply those in their community. 

Well, this evening after gifting Jason’s beloved and first manly grill to a set of newlyweds, I decided to check the mail. I was surprised to see one envelope from the parents of my former co-worker. As I walked up the stairs, I jogged my memory as to why I would be receiving a letter from her parents since she no longer resides in Fargo and I had already received her wedding thank you. When I opened the card this is what I found:

The newspaper article from The Forum telling the world that Coach Kemp was moving on. Ok, so I have talked enough about him moving on, but the gesture and note were so sweet and kind. I shed a tear that my former co-worker’s mother would think to cut out the article, send it to me, and write such a special note of congratulations and well-wishes. See, the thing is, both Coach Kemp and I had neglected to get a newspaper with the said article. And, as my former co-worker’s mother stated: “mothers and grandmothers like these types of things.”

I am still smiling!


May 13, 2013

Many Thanks, Fargo

Granted I have a few more weeks to reside in the state of North Dakota, I wanted to take a moment to reflect and thank the many wonderful people that I have had the pleasure to befriend and opportunities that have been bestowed upon me.

During the summer of 2011, I moved to Fargo, ND to join my then fiancĂ©. If you have read ‘Our Story’ or the ‘Coach Kemp’ page then you will know that Coach Kemp had been working in MN/ND area as men’s basketball coach for several years. Once we got engaged (and many months prior) we had planned that I would move to Fargo, so then we could end our long-distance relationship. Moving to Fargo was simple, Jason had established a tight-knit group of friends and I just fell smitten with all of their wives/girlfriends. Every person that I have met in our athletic crew (football, basketball, soccer, etc.) has been simply wonderful. I do have a few friends whose husband’s jobs have them moving frequently, and I must attest that coaches’ wives and families are so welcoming. I believe this is because we are so used to the constant relocation and our husbands are on the road. I like to think of it as a “sisterly bond.”

I will truly miss the women that I have grown accustomed sitting next to at Bison basketball games, especially our varied conversations. It is funny after games when Jason asks my opinion of the game… Hmm, typically I watch about 1/3 of the game. The remaining portion, I am talking, entertaining kiddos, or daydreaming about something else. Then there are those nail-biting games in which I am screaming at the refs, even though I have no clue what I am yelling at, or wishing someone would call/text for a distraction. As you can see, my life truly revolves around understanding the sport of basketball… not so much. I truly hope the Toledo wives are as clueless as I. Unfortunately/fortunately; one is a former basketball player herself… I am certain she will try to sit at the opposite end of the row, ha.

What I am most grateful for was the opportunity to work in am amazing school district and then education service agency this year. When we first decided that I was going to forego an APPIC internship, much was on the line. I had spent nearly five years working towards my degree, and making the decision to do non-traditional internship was pretty risky. However, I have realized that God truly has a plan for each one of us. After beginning my internship, a door opened which allowed me to not only work in the state of MN but also ND. How lucky was I? Well, you have no idea?!?! Working in both states allowed me to widen my breadth of experiences vastly. I so cherish the relationships formed with the school personnel in both states. My time in ND deepened my practical understanding of Response to Intervention (RTI) which was strongly emphasized in my graduate training program.  This past year, being employed with an education service agency has provided me the opportunity to work with so many varied school districts and amazing individuals, many of whom are female. Honestly, the crew I work with is astounding. I am simply honored to have had the pleasure of working with them for this short period of time.

There was absolutely no way that I could leave Fargo without stating my deep gratitude for those who have crossed my path. I hope to stay in touch with many, and am certain their lives will continue to prosper.

With Love, Appreciation, & Gratitude,


And yes, about 1 month ago Jason finally made me watch the movie Fargo. Not sure if that had some affect on our move :)

May 12, 2013

Coach Kemp is Officially a Rocket

I am a few days behind on my news for my blog; those that follow me on Instagram know that Jason announced this past Tuesday that he was departing NDSU. Although I cannot speak for him, I do know that this was a very difficult decision for him... He has truly enjoyed his last 8 seasons as a Bison - the players, coaches, and fans. NDSU was his first Division I coaching job! One cannot take those memories away, yet in basketball you can't allow an opportunity to pass you up either. He is so ready to take on this next challenge and I am beyond ecstatic to join him in our new home state of Ohio.

Toledo Athletics

Have you ever been to Ohio? Where should I visit?


May 2, 2013

As Featured On: One Stylish Bride

I do realize that I am one day late on my weekly Wedded Bliss Wednesdays, but I had some technical difficulties... Why is it that I have difficulties with my computer when my husband is out of town! Well, let me stop complaining because he has fixed the external hard-drive and I was able to retrieve the pictures that I wanted to showcase from our engagement session since we were featured this past Monday on One Stylish Bride - a wedding blog, innovative wedding planning tools and wedding directory based out of Australia.

Here is the link to our feature, but I also wanted to show some additional photos that I truly love.

Again, check our our feature on Stylish Bride.