Friday, August 27, 2010

The tale of the job, the redneck jamboree, and the homeward bound couch

Much has happened in the Shepherd household since the defeat of the ants. Our first big news is I finally found something to do to fill my day besides watching Gilmore Girls and reading cookbooks. (Not that I didn’t love that, but apparently there was a rumor floating around that I was becoming a bum!) It’s called a job! I am working for a health behavior change organization down in Fayetteville . I feel like quite the adult now that I am a commuter. (30 minute drive) Eventually I’ll be working as a personal health coach. I’ll help participants lose weight, manage chronic diseases, quit smoking, etc. I won’t start that until October. In the meantime, I am an engagement specialist. Sounds impressive but really just means the annoying girl who calls your home 45 times. The companies we’re partnered with provide me with a list of their employees covered under insurance, and I get to call them and tell them they are unhealthy and should enroll in our program. I’m kind of like a salesperson except I’m not selling anything. The program is free for participants because their employers pay us. I mostly talk to answering machines all day, but yesterday I talked to a woman we have been trying to reach since 2008. Not only did I talk to her, but I enrolled her! Quite the accomplishment. The amazing thing is she had no idea who we were. Really? You didn’t hear the 38 messages we’ve left you over the last two years?

Second, Nate found his new favorite form of entertainment: demolition derby/redneck spotting! We decided to check out the local hot spots so we went down to the rodeo grounds in Springdale for the demolition derby. First thing we noticed was the rule seemed to be shirts and teeth are not required, however, beer is. I liked watching the crowd. Nate liked watching the cars start on fire. He’s already looking for another derby to go to. He’ll need to grow out his facial hair a bit to fit in better next time.

Finally, we found a couch on our doorstep. Some friends of ours in the ward offered to give us one of their old couches. Neither of us had a way to transport it so it’s been waiting for us in their garage for the last month. The other day, we opened the door and there she be! Just sitting there waiting to be brought into our home and loved. We’re not really sure when it got there or how it got there. It found its way home somehow and we love it.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Have you seen a carpenter ant? How about 500 or so of them crawling around your house? No? That could easily be remedied if you lived in Arkansas. Shortly after we moved in, we found ourselves in a plague of carpenter ants. These aren't regular ants either. We're talking sumo wrestler ants! We found some pest killer in the garage that our landlord had left us, but in reading the label, we were disappointed to find that it killed every kind of ant known to man EXCEPT carpenter ants. It soon became a battle of Nate vs. the ants. He bought some new killer and here is a picture of the results.

Nate found where they were sneaking into our house and sprayed it down with ant poison. We soon found at least 100 of them dead on the floor. Nate swept them up and proudly took a picture to document his victory! I still find a couple of lone ants here and there, but for the most part they have retreated, and we have reclaimed our home. Nate: 1 Ants: 0. What an impressive husband!

Monday, August 2, 2010

The Good & Bad of Our First Camping Trip

We went camping this weekend at Lake Degray with Bryson and Alyssa. Here are a few of the highlights.

Good idea: Plan a camping trip 4.5 hours away solely for the purpose of running in a 5k called The Dam Night Run
Bad idea: Forget to train for said run

Good idea: Use gift cards from our wedding to buy an air mattress so as to avoid sleeping on the hard ground
Bad idea: Try to save money by buying the cheap batteries that don’t work so we can’t blow up our new air mattress

Good idea: Spend the day playing in the water and lounging on the sand
Bad idea: Spend the day in the sun getting dehydrated and then try to run a race

Good idea: Cook gourmet food while camping. Who says you have to just eat hot dogs when you’re eating in the wilderness?
Bad idea: Eat too much gourmet food and then try to run a race

Good idea: Take a rotating fan to go in the tent and keep us cool at night
Bad idea: Go camping when its 100 degrees and 80% humidity and only take one fan for the tent

Good idea: Camp at a campground with flushable toilets
Bad idea: Forget to make sure there is actually toilet paper in the stalls

Good idea: Stop and check out Hot Springs,the number one tourist destination in Arkansas
Bad idea: See the number one tourist destination in Arkansas after being here for three weeks. Now what are we going to see?

All in all we had a good time camping and running the Dam Night Run. We are thinking of making it an annual event just so we can get the t-shirt from the race…