Two Years in the Blink of an Eye


My last post was written in September…SEPTEMBER!!!   Now it is the beginning of May and I am sitting here thinking;

1. Where has the last 8 months gone?

2. My blog is called, “The 2 Year Sabbatical’ and it has been two years! Is my Sabbatical over?


If you know a little about me, you might recall that two years ago I made the decision to stop working full time as a school counselor to stay home to be more present with my family.  Many things were going on at the time; Patrick was traveling more frequently and for longer stays with his new position,my two boys were busier than ever and we had just found the perfect house for us and sold the house we had been in for 9 years.

Although I loved my job as a school counselor, loved the students and the people I worked with, I came to the decision the best choice for my family would be to take a couple years off.  In doing that I would be able to enjoy my kids a little more, be able to volunteer and try some new hobbies and run the Cook house with a little less chaos.

The first year was awesome.  I got us settled in our new house,  took some classes at Church of the Resurrection and Ascension, planted a garden, fixed up furniture, attended estate sales, made lots of new recipes, ran a race or two, climbed a mountain in Colorado, and learned to golf. (all in the blog)

This year has been just as good.  I did an Advent and Lent study at my church and currently doing a class at the Church of the Resurrection with my favorite teacher Ginger Rothhaas called Divine Assignments.  It is a class that digs deep into different stories in the Bible and how the characters found their purpose and calling.   This is the 3rd class I’ve taken from Ginger since my little ‘sabbatical’ started, and she has taught me so much. If you ever get a chance to hear her speak or are able take a class with her, I highly recommend it!  In all of these classes, I come out of it with a wealth of knowledge and spiritual insight.  Not to mention, the other women in the class are amazing people that I have learned from as well.  I made her this frame of the best things I’ve learned from her.

One of the studies at the church of the Ascension was based on the advent study from the Blessed Is She series.  If you don’t have a daily devotional, I highly recommend their email version.   It’s one of the first things I do every morning and it comes straight to my inbox with an inspirational message and scripture.

Gingers Words of Wisdom

Another big event was that Patrick turned 40 and we celebrated by having a little backyard party and then going to the British Virgin Islands…his favorite place.  We were hoping to run into Kenny Chesney,  but didn’t get that lucky!


Celebrating Patrick in our backyard!
I used a little to much helium. I had no idea it was that expensive. YIKES! Note to party planners: If you rent a helium tank, do not buy enormous balloons.


Of course, we had to bring in Gary to sing. He is awesome!!
Boarding the tiny plane to get us to Scrub Island in the British Virgin Islands



Patrick’s favorite spot



Jill and Jason made this awesome flag we hung on our boat when we went out to explore the other islands. They are so clever.


A few months later, I hosted Thanksgiving for my family and got to watch my brother Mark, play for his first state title as a football coach.




Basketball season came and I got to watch Thomas and Jack play!   It was a great season and fun to watch them grow to love the sport even more.

This might be my favorite Jack moment of the year!  Can you imagine being 11, making a half court shot and high school students carrying you celebrating?  He was beyond excited!





After basketball the boys moved on to Lacrosse


A cool picture with the sun going down taken by a classmate of Thomas.


Jack trying out goalie















I finally learned to play bridge this winter.  I took a 7 week course through Parks and Recreation. The requirement was that you had to be 55 or older to sign up, but they let me sign up anyway.  When I showed up the first day of class, the teacher assumed I was in the wrong room.  Nope, just a 30 something wanting to learn to play bridge.

Bridge is a very complicated game,  but fun to learn. Did you know that Warren Buffet and Bill Gates came to play in a tournament in Kansas City in November?  My Bridge teacher Christy was there to help run the tournament.


Next up, starting a bridge group of my own to keep learning and the brain going.

The first day of bridge class.  It is a hard game to learn, but fun, fun, fun once you get the hang of it!






For spring break we rented a house with some friends in the Dominican Republic.  Lots of fun in the sun and we had a great time.  We rented 10 of the rooms for the five families that came.  Of course, my creative friends came up with the olympics game that had my boys a little too competitive.

If you are traveling with a big group, I would highly recommend the Palms.   The owner is from New York but lives in the Dominican most of the time these days.  She is wonderful and you will love the staff.  We got to choose our menu and sit together every meal at a long table while the chef and bartender made the best food and drinks.  It was like having an all inclusive hotel all to yourself.


This table easily sat 30 people so every meal we all got to sit together.



Spring Break 2018





This year I also started an earring business.  Leather earrings have been popular around here and I thought I could figure it out.   It has been a fun way for me to make a little money and be creative and it’s probably the reason this

has been the first blog post since September.  :). I made over 50 pair this weekend for customers and business is great!

I created a little Etsy shop and opened it early this year.  You can check out my Etsy shop HERE!


Always trying new designs.
I do not like selfies AT ALL, however sometimes I have to model the earrings. Anyone want to be my model???



Sending some earrings off to Embellish boutique in Pittsburg. I currently have LOCO in 3 stores. It’s been a lot of fun!



So now that my 2 Year Sabbatical is up, what am I going to do??  {Insert big sigh here}. I don’t know.  I love teaching and being a school counselor, but I also love being home and having a flexible schedule.  I think you might just have to stay tuned, because I don’t even know yet and I’m just going to follow a rule I set for myself a long time ago:  Work hard, try your best, be kind and trust in God.

By doing that, I don’t think I can go wrong.  🙂

4 thoughts on “Two Years in the Blink of an Eye

  1. Love this blog my sweet friend! You have had an amazing journey this past year! Best wishes to what yet is to come❤️

  2. Lori – you are so stinking cute! your vacations look amazing and I LOVE my earrings! you are so multi-talented!

    1. Thanks Leslie. ❤️❤️hoping we can connect soon. Hoping I get to see pics of your new house soon!

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