Our Route 66 stop at The Blue Whale of Catoosa near Tulsa, Oklahoma

Sometimes when I travel, something catches my eye and an obsession is born. It usually doesn't take long to convince Ann to go along when I explain...

Don’t judge Nebraska until you’ve gotten off of I-80 and seen the Sandhills

There is nothing quite like getting off the interstate to help you get to know a place better, and nowhere is that more true than Nebraska. Our...

More than candlesticks: What we found at Clint Harp’s shop

No Fixer Upper fan's trip to Waco, Texas, would be complete without a stop at carpenter extraordinaire Clint Harp's design company. When we were in...

Our Inaugural Sine Die Adventure: Chicago

Our first ever Sine Die Adventure was to Chicago in 2012. Our daughter, Meghan, and I planned the trip for Ann and she had no idea where we were...

A new view of Key West

I'm one of the lucky ones. My grandparents spent winters in the Florida Keys so I've been to Key West many times. I have seen the drag queen lowered...

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A perfect fall day with family

Today was one of those cool, cloudy days when it starts to really feel like fall in Nebraska. The trees are starting to change colors and the corn fields are almost ready for harvest this time of year. Now that Steve has a more flexible schedule, we thought it might...

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Headed to the Pacific Northwest

As you may remember, when Steve resigned as middle school principal this summer, one of the first things we wanted to do with our more flexible schedule was spend some quality time with our parents. We took his mom and dad on a week-long trip across Nebraska in July...

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On the road again

When I decided to leave my full-time job as a middle school principal this spring, one of the things Ann and I wanted to do in this interim stage was spend more time with our families. For years, our jobs have dictated when we could travel and how much time we could...

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Postcards from the Johnstone family

Ann's brother and sister-in-law, Stephen and Carrie, took their two sons, Nathan and Noah, on a driving adventure last summer. They headed out across northern Nebraska, through Valentine, and up into the Badlands of South Dakota. They wanted to take a trip that felt...

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Haven’t been to Huntsville…yet

We recently received a postcard from the folks at Visit Huntsville, Ala. We have not been to Huntsville, but I qualify that statement with a big, "yet!" The Rocket City, as it's known, is definitely on our list of places to visit because if its rich history with the...

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A postcard from San Diego

Our friends, Gary and Linda, recently headed west to sunny San Diego, Calif. I've known Gary and Linda for years, and even had the opportunity to travel with them on one of the school tours to Europe I led a few years ago. They are great travelers, always looking to...

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Teaching your kids through travel

Travel isn't just for fun, it can also be a great way to learn something new. Our friends, the Bissons, took this to heart when they headed out on a road trip to Minnesota and Wisconsin from their home in Florida to see family. They decided that their two sons should...

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Bringing back old-school family vacations

We are so impressed by our friends, Matt and Jennene Anderson, who still take their three kids on old-school family vacations. You know the ones - where you load the kids in the family truckster and drive across the country to explore new cities, visit National Parks,...

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See where our parents have been

We thought we'd kick off this summer travel season with a series of blog posts featuring some of the postcards that we've received. We love going down to the post office, opening our P.O. box, and finding postcards from far-away places. It is so neat to think of all...

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A postcard from Husker fans

We have had the privilege of having season tickets to Nebraska Cornhusker football games for the past five years. Every fall, we look forward to returning to Memorial Stadium, going through Gate 20, walking up and up and up to section 108, and squeezing ourselves in...

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Postcard from Rocky Mountain Natl. Park

Estes Park, Colorado, is a favorite vacation spot for our friends and neighbors, Matt and Linda Hanson of Crete, Neb. They have vacationed there for years and continue to rave about the Golden Aspens, the wildlife, and the variety of outdoor activities available for...

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Postcards from the Pipers

Ben and Nikki Piper are two of our best friends and were so happy that they were able to take a quick getaway this summer with their young children and Ben's parents, Martha and Steve. For their family vacation, they drove from their home in Crete, Neb., to beautiful...

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A postcard from the “villes”

One of our most avid followers, Dale Strehle and his wife, Cindy, recently sent us a postcard from the Belle Meade Plantation in Nashville, Tennessee. They stopped there on what they referred to as their "ville" tour which took them through Louisville, Knoxville,...

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A postcard from North Platte, NE

If you've been thinking about visiting North Platte, Nebraska, this is the weekend. Seriously, just get in the car and go! Yes, it's that time of year to put on your cowboy boots, find your hat, and mosey on down to the Wild West Arena where you can wrangle up all...

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A postcard from Harry Potter’s world

This summer, our friends and neighbors, the Faltins, visited the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios in California and we were so excited to get their postcard! Kevin and Michelle and their two youngest kids flew to California (where Michelle is from)...

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Postcards from Minnesota

Steve and I are getting ready to head to north to Minnesota again this week. We've been going there several times a year to visit friends and family and for doctor's visits at the Mayo Clinic where I'm being treated. It is about a 7-hour drive from our house in Crete,...

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A postcard from New England

Happy National Clam Chowder Day! We thought it was a great day to share this postcard we received last summer from some of Steve's college friends from Lawrence University. In doing a little research about clam chowder, we found that according to Savoring Gotham: A...

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Postmark: Cedar Rapids, IA

This summer, we received a beautiful postcard from the Amana Colonies near Cedar Rapids, IA. The postcard was sent by a friend of ours, Jen Van Winkle and one of her friends, June Biggs. Jen and I have been friends for more than a decade. We met when I was working in...

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Thanks, Jim and Kelly

Our friends and neighbors, Jim and Kelly, celebrated their 34th wedding anniversary this summer by traveling back to their original honeymoon destination -- The Black Hills of South Dakota. We were delighted that they would take time out of their anniversary trip to...

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Crete’s Great Pumpkin Festival

This weekend, our hometown of Crete, Nebraska, hosted its inaugural Great Pumpkin Festival. It was a beautiful fall day, only made better by the site of a diverse community coming together to celebrate our town. And believe me, there is a lot to celebrate in Crete!...

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Postcards from National Parks

Two students from the middle school where I am principal (along with their parents) took what looks to have been a fun trip this summer to Yellowstone National Park and the Grand Tetons.  What a cool surprise that two of my students took time from their vacation to...

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Thanks, Meghan!

Our daughter, Meghan, turned 21 a few weeks ago. Sadly, her birthday fell on Labor Day when friends and family were busy with outdoor barbecues and many bars and restaurants were closed for the holiday. Despite reaching the legal drinking age, she wasn't really...

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Thanks, Kyle and Shelley!

I'm pretty lucky that as a middle school principal, I get to work with some fantastic teachers. Two of them are Mr. and Mrs. Poore who sent us this postcard from their trip to San Francisco this summer. We've heard for years that summers in San Francisco can be pretty...

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Postcard from Tampa

One of my former students from Mississippi, Kalessia, heard about our blog, and sent us a postcard!  It was such a wonderful surprise to hear from her after all these years. She was in Tampa on business, but tells us that Florida was as beautiful as always. She also...

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Thanks, Jo

One of Steve's colleagues from Crete Public Schools sent us a couple postcards this summer from her vacation in the beautiful Ozarks. Table Rock Lake is an artificial lake or reservoir in The Ozarks of southwestern Missouri and northwestern Arkansas. The lake is...

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Thanks again, mom!

My mom has been doing a lot of traveling this year and her most recent trip was to North Carolina to visit her younger brother, Bill, and his family. She had visited my Uncle Bill last fall and had a great time, so I wasn't surprised she wanted to go back. However, I...

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Thanks, Melony and Kari!

Lake of the Ozarks is a popular vacation destination for people in our part of the country. You can typically drive there in a day and the rolling hills of Missouri are just beautiful. Last week, we received a postcard from two of my high school classmates, Melony and...

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Thanks, Jo and Steve!

Our friends Jo and Steve sent us a postcard from beautiful San Diego, California! They said they loved their time in La Jolla where they watched sea lions at the cove. La Jolla Cove is a beach in San Diego that is ideal for snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking, and...

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Postcard from Kalona, Iowa

A good friend of mine from high school lives in Iowa now and recently sent us a postcard from Kalona,  just an hour south of where she and her family live. They've lived there for years but had never been to nearby Kalona which was settled as an Amish community in the...

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Thanks, Mom.

Last month, my mom checked off another popular destination on her bucket list -- New York City. She had always wanted to travel to The Big Apple and had just never had the opportunity. This spring, she got involved in a fantastic lifelong learning organization called...

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Thanks, Piper Family!

Our friends, the Pipers, sent us a postcard this week from one of the best zoos in the world -- Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium, which is just up the road from us here in Nebraska. This zoo is absolutely amazing and in our opinion, is a must-see U.S. attraction....

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Surprise! We’re going to ___________ .

A few of years ago, I told Ann that I was going to plan a trip, book it, pack her bag, pick her up from work and take her directly to the airport for a surprise weekend away. With a horrified expression, she told me that I should never do that because there is no way...

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Postcard what?

Postcard jar. That's right. Here's the story. A few years ago, I read a home  decorating blog post from Young House Love about saving postcards from places you visit and displaying them in a glass vase. I loved the idea and from that point on in May of 2011, whenever...

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Music for the soul

After my appointments today at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Steve and I spent two hours sitting in the lobby of Mayo’s Gonda Building where we listened to Jane Belau play the grand piano for passersby. We’d seen her play before and enjoyed the music, but today was...

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A new view of Key West

I'm one of the lucky ones. My grandparents spent winters in the Florida Keys so I've been to Key West many times. I have seen the drag queen lowered in her giant shoe at midnight on New Year's Eve. I've sipped beers in Sloppy Joe's, Captain Tony's and even the Hog's...

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Nebraska’s Nicest Nine Recap

Earlier this summer, Steve and I took off on a 6-day journey to find out for ourselves if our home state lives up to its new slogan, "Nebraska Nice." We wrote about some of the nicest things we saw -- calling them  our 2014 "Nebraska's Nicest Nine."  The list was...

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  • Ann learned how to make #paella last week with @okcyndi and @thechefandthedish. Read all about how they Skyped with Chef Ana of @freshcookingspain to learn how to make this traditional Spanish dish.  Blog link in bio.  @olivesfromspain_canada @olivesfromspainindia @olivesfromspainuk @olivesfromspainusa @spain.info @latienda
  • We saw some amazing lights in the Philbrook area of Tulsa this week including this residence that covered more than a dozen trees in white lights. #tulsalights #tulsa #visitOK #christmaslights  #travel #travelblogger #postcardjar #midlife #oklahoma #explore
  • 🍺 🍺 🍺 From our visit to @pivobrewery and @bleptastudios in northeast Iowa were you can enjoy hand crafted beer and beer crafted art. ⁣New blog post all about in the link in our bio.
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#craftbeer #instabeer #beer #cheers #drinkcraft #beerlife #beerlover #craftbeerlife #thisisiowa #artlover #craftbeerjunkie #drinklocal #craftbeersnob #beerpics #postcardjar @charlenecorsonselbee
  • Yes, we are thankful, grateful, and blessed. It was just the three of us this year - Steve, Ann, and our daughter, Meghan. We spent the morning cooking together and enjoyed a wonderful meal. Now it’s time for some football and maybe a piece of pie at halftime. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. #thanksgiving #turkey #blessed
  • We're in love with the colors of fall in the #midwest. #midwestmoment #thisisiowa #postcardjar #midwesttravel #midwestisbest
  • Even in the off-season, Clear Lake, Iowa, is a wonderful place to visit. We were able to take one of the last #LadyoftheLake cruises before the paddle wheel boat was docked for the winter. #clearlake #thisisiowa # #postcardjar #smalltowns #MWTravel
  • Love wearing #turquoise this time of year. Found many beautiful pieces at The Buckin' Flamingo in #Pawhuska, OK. #silversmith #artisanjewelry #turquoiseoverdiamonds #handcraftedjewelry #turquoisejewelry #postcardjar #midlifetravel
  • The Butterfly Room at The Pioneer Woman Boarding House was just magical. Lots of light, comfy bedding, fresh roses, and warm cookies at bedtime. Oh, and did I mention there are two vanities and two toilets? Yes, we had an incredible stay. #postcardjar #luxurytravel #pawhuska #thepioneerwoman #luxurytraveler #oklahoma

Making the most of midlife.