Category Archives: Profiles in Awesome

Profile in Awesome: Aimie Eckelberg

One of the most popular Under the Tapestry posts to date was the Profile in Awesome featuring Aimee Rathbun.  And I can see why– Aimee really is  awesome!  And she makes for an absolutely riveting read!

Aimee Rathbun is actually one of only FOUR really awesome (Aimee/Aimie/Amy)s that I know. (That, by the way, is the plural of the name A-ME in all its different spellings. You’re welcome.) And for my second profile in awesome, I’d like to tell you about my co-worker, my friend, and all around person Aimie Eckelberg.

Aimie started working in the Office of Scientific Writing and Publication shortly after I did in 2011 and good grief am I glad she did. For two reasons: 1) I don’t think I could survive in my job without her, but more importantly, 2) SHE’S AWESOME! She has since moved on to greener pastures as part of the Clinical Medicine and Research staff, but (fortunately for me) her office didn’t move. YAY!

Aimie on the far right-- pretty in pink, adored by her office-mates :)
Aimie on the far right– pretty in pink, adored by her office-mates 🙂

So I asked my friend Aimie Eckelberg to be my second profile in awesome. I was totally anticipating an uphill battle to convince her to participate, but was pleasantly surprised when she quickly said yes. (YES!) However, I perhaps was a bit too coercive and pressure-y (so sorry, Aimie, dear!) and she ended up asking not to write about herself. Although, it wasn’t so much her concern about writing about herself that did her in. Rather, it was her concern about writing about her family and not doing them justice that truly concerned her. Which of course, made my heart swell with pride for being able to call Aimie my friend and made me want to profile her all the more. Considering that this is only the second-ish installment in this series, I think you can probably forgive the departure from the norm.

There are so many things I adore about Aimie! She’s crazy nice, super cute, undeniably stylish, bright (like really bright), 100% mom-spirational, and the type of person who just knows who she is and what she’s doing and does all of it (and more!) in such an admirable way. It’s impossible not to just love her. (Or at least I assume it is, I’d like to see someone try!) To be honest, I loved Aimie from the moment she came in to interview. So much, that I creepily pointed out her perfect and flawless skin as a good reason to hire her. We did. But I’m pretty sure her skin was only part of the reason why.

Aimie grew up with her brother and parents in Spencer, Wisconsin… a town even smaller than Marshfield (believe it or not) just to the northwest of where we are now. Aimie truly embodies what it means (to me, anyway) to be from the Midwest. She is unassuming and hard working. Soft spoken, for the most part, but loyal to the core and unwilling to let something wrong go without taking action.

I absolutely love that Aimie is a local girl through and through. Every day, she demonstrates how much she believes in this community and truly makes me look forward to having lived here longer than not– to have roots in this town like she does. Last night, Aimie invited me to a campaign for Spread the Word to End the Word at her kiddos’ school and I went intending to take a couple pictures of Aimie doing her thang and to talk to Emma and Noah about what it is that, in their opinion, make their mom so dang awesome. I got way more than I bargained for. Of course. Because she’s Aimie. And I plan to tell you all about Spread the Word to End the Word and the awesome Harry and Company puppet show I saw later this week– it’s totally worthy of it’s own post and only goes to prove more and more why the things that Aimie are involved in are good things, for her family and for this community.

In fact, motherhood and kid stuff are the things that seem, at least in my opinion, to make Aimie tick and that’s what I really want to highlight about her.  Aimie is, as I mentioned, 100% mom-spirational and her kids are 1) awesome (likely due to good parenting) and 2) special in a lot of ways.  First off, Aimie’s two little bebes are quintessentially boy and girl and oh so different from each other.  I’m so impressed with how Aimie and her husband parent two such incredibly unique children. Unique and adorable children.

Do you see how adorable these kiddos are?! (Plus, Aimie's skin, right? Cover Girl-style flawless!)
Do you see how adorable these kiddos are?! (Plus, Aimie’s skin, right? Cover Girl-style flawless!)

One of the most amazing things I see about Aimie as a parent is her crazy perseverance.  I’ve only known her for a little over two years, and even in that short time, I have seen her find herself constantly in the position to have to fight, fight, fight for what her children need.  And she does.  She never gives up.

I suppose a little back story is in order. Aimie’s oldest child, Noah, is 10 years old and was born with spina bifida, the most common permanently disabling congenital condition in the United States, which results from failure of the spinal column to close completely. I’d love to say that Noah is completely normal despite his condition, but that wouldn’t be true. Because honestly, nothing about Noah is normal. He is an unbelievably bright and articulate kid. He is fascinating to talk to. (He challenged me to a magical dual last night, by the way. He also schooled me in HP trivia. Awesome kid!)

Noah is hilarious and independent and thoughtful and kind and, not only all of that, but he’s crazy athletic too. Under the tutelage of paralympian Tony Iniguez (like real deal was in the olympics in Beijing, coached in London, for seriously), Noah recently took up wheelchair racing and plans to someday attend the University of Illinois to continue his racing career. And it’s not just racing either! Noah plays sled hockey and basketball and loves just about every active thing he can get himself into– which is legitimately pretty much everything.

And Emma is just as special! It’s incredible the way her shy smile can light up a room. She absolutely beams. Although, the sparkly letters on the back of her Universal Academy of Dance jacket certainly help the case in that respect. Emma is super into dance, and really, really good at it– ballet, jazz, tap, you name it. And she got so into cheerleading this fall that Aimie dusted off her pompoms and practiced her cheers until she ended up as the coach! So fun! Go Tigers! All the little girls adored Aimie (what’s not to adore, right?)… especially when she was “weird”– and that’s a direct quote from one of the girls 🙂

So because her kids are so amazing and because it hurt Aimie to see them struggle at certain things, Aimie opened her big old heart and wrote a book about it. A children’s book.

In 2010, Aimie Eckelberg added author to her resume when she wrote a children’s book called Walk the Walk.

Walk the Walk. Available on
Walk the Walk. Available on Amazon.

Walk the Walk tells the story of Jon, a little boy with special needs who turns a bit of bullying at the start of a new school year into an opportunity to teach other kids about differences and understanding. And this book has done just that over and over and over again. Noah and Emma’s classes have read the book, Aimie has brought it in and discussed it, Noah has used it as an opportunity to show off his braces and talk about his differences and pretty much always, his peers are fascinated. Aimie has spoken about her book and been an activist for children with special needs through the Children’s Miracle Network and Spina Bifida Association. Her name is passed around by obstetricians here at Marshfield Clinic looking to help families facing new challenges find a mentor. She inspired me to adopt a family this Christmas through the Pediatric Angel Fund. And she is a well-respected and admired member of this community.

The only thing is, despite all of this awesome, Aimie has eaten a large slice of humble pie and any and all of this is dragged out of her or made public knowledge in some other way… otherwise, you’d truly never know. (For example, another coworker, Deb, said to a physician lamenting Aimie’s absence from work one day, “Aimie has a child with special needs AND wrote and published a book about it for other children!” He was floored… and impressed!) But I want you to know how awesome Aimie is and for Aimie to recognize all of the good that she’s done.

To round out this profile in awesome, I really wanted to know what Noah and Emma thought about their mom’s awesome qualities. I’ve got to tell you, though, to them– she’s just mom.

I asked Emma first. Her response: She gives us candy!

To which Noah immediately replied, “Emma! Are you kidding?! She drives you to dance! And pays for your dance!”

So I asked Noah. His response: She pretty much drives me everywhere.

Good point Noah, much better than Emma’s. (sarcasm)

Although, they thought about it on the way home and came up with a lot more reasons. So many reasons that they made me a list and had Aimie bring it to me this morning.

So much awesome!
So much awesome!

Love it! Love it so much! She is a mom through and through, and that’s what her kids see– she loves them and cares for them, she feeds them, clothes them, houses them, she is smart, funny, patient, and giving. Normal mom stuff. And what kind of a testament is that?

A huge one, if you know about the behind-the-scenes. About Aimie’s struggle to get her children the care and support they need in various local school systems. About Aimie’s necessity to fill in and coach cheerleading at the last minute because someone else was going to let the girls down. About Aimie’s ongoing fight to make sure Noah and Emma have every single opportunity they could possibly want– be it educational assistance or wheelchair sports. And the two of them will likely never be the wiser… at least not for a while. Until they are grown up and truly capable of appreciating all of the good and amazing things their mom does. She’s certainly appreciated for it all elsewhere! She is certainly awesome.

Like I said in the beginning, Aimie has introduced me to a lot… and she’s awesome. I can’t wait to tell you about the Spread the Word to End the Word campaign later this week, it’s too cool!

Debbie Crocker as The Ghost of Christmas Present (a profile in awesome)

You know how in cartoons, a good smell will come wafting by and the character floats along on the stream of good smells until they find what it is that smells so dang good? Like this:


(Note: if you click on the link to the picture source, you’ll find a recipe from May the Fork Be with You for homemade pierogies with kielbasa that looks to… die… for… Definitely going to have to try that.)

Anyway, I was sitting in my office this morning when that exact thing happened to me.


A delicious smell touched my nose and I floated up, up, up out of my chair and down the hall toward what was truly a sight to behold!

I’ve mentioned before that I have some pretty stellar coworkers. And by stellar I mean, of course, out-of-this-flipping-world. But it’s not just my coworkers that are completely The people who work near us are awesome as well. And my friend Debbie Crocker is no exception.

Although, she is exceptional. And she was responsible for that heavenly smell.

Debbie Crocker went ALL OUT to celebrate Christmas with us today! She brought homemade chicken fettuccine alfredo with garlic and parmesan to top it! She brought big puffy rolls and butter to spread on them– with a Christmas tree-topped spreader! And the cookies, my goodness!  Debbie Crocker is famous for her annual cookie day and she brought us the spoils! And in case all that weren’t enough, she even brought a deliciously cheesy chip dip as an appetizer! Un-be-lieve-a-ble!

Debbie Crocker

I know it looks like your typical office potluck. But it’s not– Debbie Crocker brought in and made everything herself. And this is what it actually looked like in person (i.e. through my eyes) because the photo above just does’t do it justice:

Muppet Christmas Feast

(I really identify with Miss Piggy, FYI.)

This woman’s heart… it’s just so big, so beautiful, so good… so overflowing with kindness and positivity and joy. My heart swells just looking at her! And I can tell you without a doubt, that today, I am feeling very loved (and very, very full) and I’m sure all of my coworkers (and even Sister Doctor who was invited for lunch!) do too. Because this is a very, very special woman.

You know the end of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens– Scrooge becomes a changed man and says, “I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.” My dear friend Debbie Crocker is that person, the person who has Christmas in her heart, and happiness and goodness besides, the whole year round.

Today, she was absolutely the Ghost of Christmas Present. Scrooge after his revelation. The Grinch after his heart burst the little measuring doo-hicky. But most importantly, Deb is like that every day– every. single. day. She is just awesome. And while I know I can never be just like Deb, because she’s truly one-of-a-kind, she does inspire me to do everything I can to make others feel as good as she makes me feel through kindness and love.

Kindness and love and cookies. Christmas cookies.

Christmas Cookies
There are still some left! Come by for a snack- we can chat about Christmas!


PS: Did you notice the falling snow on the blog?! Isn’t that awesome! I’m in love with it!

Profile in Awesome: Aimee Rathbun

Here we are, friends! It’s finally Wednesday and today is the day I promised you Under the Tapestry’s first Profile in Awesome!  YAY!

Today, I would like to introduce you to my friend and yours: Aimee Rathbun.  Aimee was my next door neighbor in the dorms at Michigan Tech and I loved her instantly.  She is basically the definition of awesome and I want to scream it from the roof tops…

This blog is my roof top!

When I asked Aimee if she would be my first profile, her response was, and I quote, “Oh my fish, I’m so flattered!”  The fish was an autocorrect, but I like it so much better than gosh.  Let’s go with that.

So, here she is, Aimee in her own words– oh my fish!


Hi, Aimee!  Thanks so incredibly much for agreeing to be my awesome guinea pig.  I’m really excited about this little segment and you have been on my mind for a profile in awesome since the idea first started taking shape in the back of my mind.  To start, why don’t you tell everyone a little bit about yourself… how do you typically describe YOU?

Well, I usually describe myself as slightly nerdy, I like to read and swim and ride bikes.  I like photography and quilting and working on my house.  I live in Alaska and I love it, but I miss the Great Lakes.  I miss my family and friends too, of course.  I bought a house, got a dog, joined a church, a swim club and a polo club– feels good to put down some roots!

One of the things that I find most awesome about you is your incredibly bravery.  A few years back, you embarked on a huge journey when you packed up and moved to Alaska.  Where did that kind of bravery come from and what was it like when you got there?  Tell us about the adventure!

I know you’re going to tell me I’m eating too much “humble pie”, but I don’t feel like the move up here took as much bravery as people think.  Part of the story of me ending up in Alaska has to do with moving to Flint, MI after I graduated from Tech.  I don’t think I need to go into the exact reasons I hated living in Flint, but I hated it.  I felt so trapped there.  I disliked it immediately and was looking for a new job (in West Michigan, Wisconsin or Minnesota) for an entire year.  Looking back, I was depressed.  I think I was down enough that Alaska didn’t seem that scary, at least not compared to staying in a city I disliked, at a job I disliked and without any friends.  I had to make a big change.

I had ended up in Flint because I was looking for a job in Michigan and Flint’s in Michigan.  I was able to spend more time with my parents than I did while I was in Houghton and I was even close enough to watch some of my youngest brother’s swim meets during his senior year of high school.  A few months after I started I met another new engineer, Katie, who happened to have moved in across the parking lot from me!  Eventually she introduced me to one of her friends, who lived in Alaska and ended up sending me a job posting for a job up there.  I went “ha ha, yeah right” and then immediately thought “wait… I guess… maybe… why not?”

Anyway, it turned into the most amazing 6 months of my life– interviewing and visiting Alaska for the first time (in the winter!), quitting my job and leaving Flint, taking a few months off to travel, driving to Alaska with all my worldly possessions in the back of my Jetta and starting a new life up in Fairbanks.  There are so many things I could say about that time.  It was just such a blessing to be able to spend time with family and friends– I spent a week in Mexico with Adriane, a week in Houghton for Winter Carnival with my brothers and friends and a week in Florida visiting my grandma and aunt.  And everything fell into place so marvelously.  I ended up in Fairbanks with neither a map nor a place to stay (my first stop was a Wendy’s with wi-fi) and a week later I had an apartment and a bike.  One day I even thought “I wish I had a pull chain for the ceiling fan, I wonder where you even find those in stores.”  Thirty seconds later I parked the car, opened the door, and sitting in the packed snow of the parking lot, between my door and the car, was a pull chain.  Whether it was coincidences, gut feelings or God, I’ve never felt more blessed or more like someone was looking over me than I did those 6 months.

When you moved to Alaska, you didn’t know very many people.  You are super lovable and I’m sure people took to you right away, but how did you go about putting yourself out there to make friends and develop a social network in your new home?

So I knew one person in the state when I moved up here, and I ended up dating him.  And then we broke up… and I was sad and lonely and quickly realized I was at least 4000 miles from my friends and family.  Earlier I said I didn’t feel that brave moving to Alaska… well, this is what took some serious bravery.  I let myself mope for a week or two and spent some time at open swim (when the going gets tough, I swim).  I started trying out churches.  I found a masters swimming group, tried it and loved it.  During the announcements I heard about the water polo club.  So I went.  I visited a church I loved.  After church I drove to a quilt shop in town and signed up for a beginning quilting class.  I was totally uncomfortable in these new social situations but I’m a firm believer in “fake it till you make it*.”  (*I don’t generally think people should be “fake”, but I mean smile and be friendly even if you’re nervous and feeling awkward…  soon enough you’re not even faking it.)  Even though I didn’t make any lasting friendships in quilting class, I’ve amassed an amazing support network of friends through swimming, water polo and church.

Tell me about adopting your sweet pup, Bentley.  What does she mean to you?

Bentley brings so much joy and love into my life!  I met a few dogs at the Anchorage shelter but Bentley was so soft and calm and quiet.  All she wanted was a belly rub!  I think she sleeps in my bed most of the day and I’ve heard “I’ve never seen a dog sleep so much” so I think she’s the right fit for my quiet life and small house.  She’s covered in big and small scars.  Her vets and I don’t know where they came from, but I have a feeling it was a run-in with a car or other dogs (or both!).  She cracks me up and makes me smile all the time.  When I have a bad day and am feeling road-ragey or crabby, I walk into the house, hang up the keys and look at this sweet dog wagging her tail so hard that it’s whipping her eyes and she’s squinting up at me… and my heart just melts.  When I feel like the worst person, she looks at me like I’m the best.  She’s taught me about unconditional love and how to take care of someone other than myself… all very important things.

Bentley (gorgeous girl!  AND Aimee took that beautiful photo!)

I know you love to read and I always enjoy your recommendations (I’ve read Peace Like a River twice now and adored The Snow Child).  How do you choose what you’re going to read next and what do you like most about reading?  What are some of your favorite books ever?  Do you ever re-read books?

I’ve always loved to read– my mom used to panic when it’d take me 30 minutes to walk 3 blocks home from elementary school because I was reading the whole way!  My parents read to us a lot when we were little, and I think Mom recommended Peace Like a River to me in high school.  I loved the story when I read it back then and really valued the relationships between the siblings and their dad.  When I re-read it again a year or 2 ago, I was able to focus on the religious part of it.  Another favorite is Life of Pi, just because there’s so much to think about in that one too.  I generally don’t re-read books (though I’ve read Peace Like a River and Life of Pi twice each) unless it’s an accident.  There are just too many I haven’t read yet!  Now I’m in a book club, so that helps a ton with finding things to read.  Often they pick books I’d never choose for myself, and I love that.  I think my favorite books are ones where I can totally picture the setting or the characters…  I’m an engineer so I’m not good at describing literary things but at the beginning of the Time Traveler’s Wife, the author describes a meadow in southern West Michigan.  I was reading it in an airport and I swear I could SMELL that meadow!  Most of the books I like are more uplifting and magical.  I feel depressed when I read too many sad books in a row.

One of my favorite things about you is your family– you Rathbuns are so fascinating and super fun!  I’ve never met a happier family!  Tell me about your mom and dad (best love story ever!) and those brothers of yours!  What was it like growing up a Rathbun and how did your family impact the person you are today?

Well, my parents met when they were both student janitors in McNair Hall at Michigan Tech.  We grew up visiting the UP, wearing Tech clothes and talking nerdy around the dinner table.  I have 2 younger brothers and despite my parents’ best efforts to un-brainwash us, we all ended up going to Michigan Tech too!  My middle brother is an amazing geological engineer with people skills I’ve always been envious of.  He lives in Vancouver, BC with his lovely wife (my new sister!).  My youngest brother is a computer whiz who used to count binary with my mom at the dinner table.  He’s living on the east side of Michigan with his boyfriend.  Our family has always been full of love and laughter.  In the past few years we’ve gone through lots of transitions– kids growing up and moving away, my youngest brother surprising us when he came out, adding a spouse into the mix, my parents moving out of my childhood home, etc.– but through it all nothing’s changed.  OK, so we travel a lot more to see each other and we need a few extra chairs at family dinners, but wherever we are still feels like home when we’re together and we love each other unconditionally.

Pretty please brag a little bit about your quilting… (and photo evidence would be awesome, if you wouldn’t mind me sharing some!)  How did you get into quilting and how did you learn?  From your mom?  What is your favorite quilt?  And what do you enjoy about it?

My mom had taught me how to sew and she learned from her mom (my dad’s mom sewed a lot too!).  My Grandma J is a prolific quilter– she made a quilt for each of her 30-some grandkids and then many, many other ones.  Mom made all of our halloween costumes and used to hem my pants for me but wasn’t ever really a big quilter.  In Fairbanks, I found a Singer sewing machine at a garage sale (“I’ll give it to you for $15 if you take it before my wife gets back.”) and actually put it in a pannier on my bike and rode it home!  About a year later I took a quilting class and found my current machine at an estate sale and I’ve been unstoppable since then!  I even taught my mom a few tricks (rotary cutting and lots of starch!) and she’s enjoying quilting a lot more.  Every time I am making a quilt, I’m thinking about my Mom and Grandma and the recipient of the quilt.  I think it’s a lot like praying!

My favorite quilt is a quilt my mom, grandma and I made for Walt and Leanne’s wedding.  We asked all their friends and family to send us a scrap of fabric and Mom, Grandma and I sketched out ideas on the back of a Big Boy placemat.  We ended up making a patchwork background of 6″ squares with 5 or 6 bigger applique blocks of flowers.  Finally, we appliqued vines, leaves and flowers over the patchwork.  The white flowers on the vines are apple blossom (For Walt, Michigan’s state flower) and pacific dogwood (for Leanne, British Columbia’s provincial flower).  The flower blocks have meanings too!  Grandma and Mom did most of the applique (I have no patience for hand sewing!) and Mom came to AK to help me put together the top.  So many people sent such sweet notes with the fabric that I actually scanned and cataloged the notes and fabric from each person, and starched, ironed and cut each square (and there are a lot of squares!).  I even made a book– it has pictures of us making the quilt and then the back is the fabric and notes.  I love knowing where each fabric in a quilt came from so I wanted them to be able to have a reference.

Look at the gorgeous quilt!!
Look at that gorgeous quilt!!

Tell me about your love of nature and passion for photography… I definitely remember Copper Country Cruising with you, my hands on your steering wheel as you leaned out the driver’s side window to snap pictures.  And even now, my office features eight of the gorgeous pictures you took of the UP.  Is that part of the draw in Alaska– the great outdoors?

Ha!  I don’t remember that but I don’t doubt it either!  Probably better than what I do on the Mackinaw Bridge though (stick my head out the window to look down the grate WITHOUT anyone grabbing the wheel!). I don’t know what my draw to photography is but I do know Sunday I drove to church wearing hot pink sunglasses (with rosy, polarized lenses) and I thought “I wish I could capture this and share it!”  Bright sun and fall colors against dark clouds and everything was extra intense with those sunglasses!  Sometimes I wonder if I should just enjoy it, instead of working so hard to try and capture it to keep it forever…  who knows.  I love capturing patterns and colors and things most people don’t stop to look at.  I can also totally tell my state of mental health based on the pictures I take.  I took very few pictures in Flint and the ones I did seem brown and gloomy to me.  In good times the colors are vibrant and bold (I’ve taken some awesome ones this year!).

And, of course, as a woman in STEM I can’t help but talk up your career a bit.  Civil engineering is clearly your professional calling.  I’ve never met a person more excited about sewer systems than you!  What attracted you to civil engineering?  What do you enjoy about your day job?  Do you ever feel like it matters that you are a woman on the job?

I benefited greatly from “Take Your Daughter to Work Day!”  I spent the morning watching my mom working on a computer and playing with a label maker.  I spent the afternoon traipsing through a construction site with my dad.  My Dad’s a civil engineer too, so I think I was just kinda always around it.  Now that I think about it, my first sentence was “why man put dat dirt dere?” so maybe it was always meant to be.  And the last time I was home I got a tour of my dad’s latest project– basically they’re building a building INSIDE a building I remember visiting when it was built!

I guess I’ve gotten used to being in the minority as a woman.  I have 2 brothers and no sisters, I was the only girl in my section in band, I was one of 3-5 women in my civil classes (of about 50) in college… so it doesn’t feel weird or unusual to me and I’ve learned to hold my own.  Also, I was raised to believe I could do anything I set my mind to, so I’ve never really felt limited by being a woman.  I’ve come across supervisors who believe women can’t be engineers (you know, because our brains are different) but I’ve been fortunate that they’ve never been my direct supervisors (or I didn’t know it!).  Actually, half of the civil department here is female.

This year I had someone (not at my company) say to me “yeah, you’re a woman, I know how you are, I’ve married 4 of ’em.”  I couldn’t even take it personally– in fact, it makes me laugh.  He has no idea what I’m like!  (Also, maybe he doesn’t know women as much as he thinks considering his track record!)

Finally, tell me about five things that you love, excluding Under the Tapestry, of course 😉

  1. My loving and supportive family and friends
  2. My dog
  3. Chocolate
  4. Good beer
  5. Wool socks


Seriously.  Do you see how awesome Aimee is?!

In addition to the brilliant responses she provided, Aimee also added this quote:

In the midst of hate, I found there was, within me, an invincible love.

In the midst of tears, I found there was, within me, an invincible smile.

In the midst of chaos, I found there was, within me, an invincible calm.

I realized, through it all, that…In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.

And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger, something better, pushing right back. (Albert Camus)

Beautiful, right?

Aimee was recently in Madison for a special course in super secret sewer stuff.  (Ok, maybe not super secret, but it was sewer-related.)  Since a trip to Madison is much more manageable than a trip to Alaska, a third friend from Minneapolis (our RA, Adriane!) swung through Marshfield to pick me up and we headed down to Madison for a weekend of fun.  But not just fun…

On Saturday morning, Aimee, Adriane, and I went to a super cute little diner (Daisy’s, maybe?) and had breakfast followed by homemade cupcakes… because even breakfast should come with dessert when you’re with girlfriends.  We had a blast catching up and I think even our waitress was excited about us getting the chance to catch up because our cupcakes were on the house!  Icing on the (cup)cake, as they say!

In the 12 years that I’ve known her (whaaat?!  12 years?!), Aimee has reminded me time and time again of how important it is to follow your heart.  She reminds me of the beauty in this world, even in the dead of winter, and that fun that can be found even in the mundane (it was Aimee’s pink plastic bunny, after all).  So, Aimee, thank you for being a friend (a la the Golden Girls theme song) and thank you even more for sharing your awesomeness with my blog friends!!!

This is one of the oldest pictures on my Facebook timeline-- good stuff!
This is one of the oldest pictures on my Facebook timeline– good stuff!