Blog, Career, Faith

Waiting

Do you ever feel like you are just ‘waiting’ – not even sure what for? Lately, I’ve been feeling that way. Honestly, life is so good! And I definitely strive to “Prosper where I am planted”, intentionally, every single day. However, I still have the distinct sense that something is is about to happen – something crazy big!

While I’m Waiting is a great song to remind us that waiting isn’t easy, or even enjoyable. But patience, and truly prospering where we are planted, is what we are called to do!

Blessings,

H Bloomer

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Blog, Career, Food & Drink, Travel

Connecting

Recently I was on a business trip to the L.A. and Orange County area in Southern California with CEO and Founder of L District, Nicole Anthony. And let me tell you – WHO you meet and the CONNECTIONS you make with others are huge. It was an amazing trip, filled with meaningful, purposeful conversations, and connections to last a lifetime.

From being blessed by hearing Bob Donnell (Everything Next Level) speak, yet alone having breakfast with him, to enjoying an event luncheon (Put on by Debra Faris, aka “Ms LinkedIn”) with Tedx speaker Maurice DiMi as our table mate – we had an absolutely blast, grew in our ability to connect and add value, and enjoyed every minute of it.

We were also given the opportunity to meet with Jason and Jodi Womack. WOW! What an extraordinary experience we enjoyed at Cafe Del Rey. It truly was an honor.

H Bloomer

PS: No trip to So Cal is complete without dinner at Javier’s. If you haven’t been there – you need to!

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Blog, Family, Retail

A Stay-Cation-Day at the MOA

Recently we decided to spend a day at the Mall of America (MOA) as  family.

Our highlights are below. Do you notice anything missing? Like pictures? It is because we literally just HUNG OUT together. IT WAS AMAZING. But don’t get used to it. I am typically a picture-aholoic!

  1. Go on a Sunday! We decided to go to church at our 5pm service on the Saturday before. Then meant we had an enjoyable, non-rushed morning, and headed out around 10:00am for the mall!
  2. We hit up Nickelodeon Universe first thing. No. Lines. This is definitely a parenting win!
  3. Fly Over America was open, and since Max’s favorite ride at Disney is Soarin’, we just had to check it out. It cost us a whopping $66 for the family to go, however how could we say no? Overall – it was great. Double the length of Soarin’, clean, friendly, quick process. Some of the negatives were the long instruction video, the cost, and the fact that we didn’t always know what area of “America” we were seeing! Better “landmarks” or some words in the corner to let us know where we were flying, would have been nice – but we had fun guessing. All in all, it is overpriced, and the price will definitely need to come down – but it was worth it as a one-time thing.
  4. Next – some lunch! We decided on the Hard Rock Cafe – a true ‘fake tourist’ destination! The kids loved the atmosphere, and we enjoyed some good appetizers, burgers, and kids meals – complete with a Guitar Plate!
  5. Followed up by a little shopping and a treat (DQ, Slushie, Cinnabon – variety is great!) – we all headed home and took a nice nap. A perfect day with the fam.

Cheers,

H Bloomer

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Blog, Career, Risk

Life!

“For what its worth…it’s never too late, or in my case too early, to be whatever you want to be. There’s no time limit. Start whatever you want. You can change or stay the same. There are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things that you never felt before. I hope you meet people who have a different point of view. I hope you live a life you are proud of, and if you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.” -F Scott Fitzgerald.

Today I took some significant action in my business that has made me feel alive – and it was by saying “no” to something. I was so scared before I made the decision. Scared primarily of being a failure. But then, a colleague of mine reminded me, that I just made that up. That it isn’t true. And so I took action on my “no’, and I feel on top of the world – free – like I’m flying! Immediately, because I cleared up that “space”, I see opportunities, and doorways to opportunities, that wouldn’t have been able to see otherwise. It is incredible.

Today marks a new journey on so many fronts – taking Balloons in the Sky to the next level, by sharing more observations, recommendations, and inspirations with all of you – continuing on the ‘never-ending and always-exciting and sometimes-stressful’ journey of finding (and being) peace, yet rejecting complacency, completely – embarking on new and exciting, endeavors and adventures.

Thanks for going on this ride with me,

Heidi

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Blog, Health and Wellness, Retail, Running, Shopping

Miles of Smiles

I am now six weeks into training for the Stillwater Half Marathon and today was a long-run day. Nine miles of smiles. All my mileage goals are mapped out in my planner so I can plan activities around what needs to be accomplished. In anticipation of this longer run I set out to find a really good pair of running socks. As it goes, I had two pair of “favorites” and I effectively lost one of each of the pair in the laundry last week. I’m not above wearing mismatched socks, but figured it was an OK time to invest in some additional pairs. I’m going to need them in the remaining six weeks anyway.

So- running socks are kind of expensive. Certainly I can get a 6-pack of general sports socks, from any discount retailer, but for long distance they just don’t prevent blisters or provide the compression I find valuable. After browsing the racks at Dick’s Sporting Goods, I discovered a brand called Feetures. They promised “High Performance” and “No Blisters.” Both very appealing claims. Cute colors and a moderate advertised price of $12.99/pair. (Though there must have been a signage mistake because they actually only rang up as $8.97- bonus!) I put them to the test today.

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Happy to report that the fit was snug, and there was absolutely no slipping to be felt inside my shoe. The “no show” tab actually does show a little bit, but suited my needs as is because my Asics have a higher back than my Nike Free running shoes.

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Heading into the run I already had a soft callus from running earlier this week. The beginnings of a blister if you will. I didn’t feel any pain during my run today, but when I ended the blister was certainly there. Maybe their ad copy could be better written to state, “No NEW Blisters.” That would be totally accurate. All in all, I am very satisfied and would give 4.5/5 stars overall.

Now- on a totally unrelated note- today will be the last post I create as a writer for Balloons in the Sky blog. I was offered and accepted a new FT position that begins tomorrow. After nine years at my previous job and being totally comfortable in what I do every day, I am about to embark on a new adventure. I need to give it 100% of my energy and attention right now- well, what is left over after running miles of smiles anyway.

Heidi will keep this blog going so stick around for more travel, food, recommendations, and inspirations.  Thanks so much for reading! I’ll resume writing on my own blog at some point in the future and will definitely be seeking many of you out to follow. There are many talented writers I’ve gotten to know through this blog.

All my best!

A.Lockhart

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Image Outtake. Features socks. Cats love’m.

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Blog, Food & Drink, Health and Wellness, Uncategorized

Holy Shiitake

A couple weeks ago I broke out in a terribly odd rash. It was unique in design…almost as though I had gotten into a fight with a cat and had stripey claw-like red marks on my shoulders, neck, and torso. As anyone who has ever had a random rash occur, I wracked my brain trying to figure out the source. I put my money on a zinc supplement I had started taking a few days prior. But, I also thought perhaps it was blank lentils. Those were the only two abnormal things I could think of that I had interacted with in recent days leading up to the outbreak.

I told a dear friend of mine about the rash and she also got curious about the source. After trolling the internet looking at comparable photos (now THAT is a true friend) she sent me a text message asking if I had eaten Shiitake mushrooms recently. I responded that I had not. However, I totally spaced that I HAD actually eaten some on an Asian Chicken Salad three days prior to the outbreak.

My friend and I went out to lunch this past Monday to the same restaurant where I had initially consumed the salad. It was SO good that I decided to order it again. Halfway through the meal, my lovely friend suddenly says…”Aren’t those shiitake mushrooms?” Throwing my fork down on the table, I’m like, OMG. Yes.They.Are.

So, all I could do was wait and see what happened. Sure enough, about 28 hours later the rash started on the nape of my neck just where it had started before. I immediately started dosing on Benadryl and leftover Rx cream. About 16 hours later from the onset on the nape of my neck, the stripes appeared on the front of my neck.

I am allergic to shiitake mushrooms. It’s an interesting thing. Not many cases of it according to Google, so I feel sort of special. Mystery solved. Benadryl, Rx Hydrocortisone, and lavender essential oil helped take the itch away. The rash has now resolved after 4 days. (It lasted 8 days the last time, but then again, I did eat the whole salad instead of just half.) Isn’t it crazy how it all worked out?

Best,

A.Lockhart

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