Blog entries tagged Kari Brooks

16 blog entries

The strongest woman I know

10 years ago, Kari and I were visiting Chicago during one of her fall breaks. I was there to work with my startup cofounders and she was there to hang out, shop, and enjoy our favorite city.

We got in late, ordered pizza from one of our favorite spots, and then crashed at an Air BnB. The next morning, Kari woke up unable to control the entire left side of her body. Being young, naive, and frankly stupid, we (I) thought that maybe she slept weird. Maybe she had a pinched nerve or something. I suggested that she try some stretches or yoga to see if she could work it out while I showered to get ready for work. She agreed, but the stretches weren’t helping, so we decided to go to the nearest walk-in clinic.

Preparing for how slow and …

Overlanding the 7-Hour Plane Crash Trail

The upper midwest is effectively devoid of off-roading and overlanding opportunities. Most people in the scene are settling for camping in parks, getting invites to a handful of events on private land, or making long hauls to get our fix outside of the midwest.

We'd been planning a fall overlanding escape to the Ozark National Forest with our cousins, who have a very similar setup as ours (Ford Broncos and off-road teardrops). We scouted out some campsites that we could drop our campers at while we wheeled through the forest. Ideally, we'd pull the teardrops through the trails, but some of the water crossings can get pretty high, and no one wants a wet mattress...

The week before we were set to leave, the forecast predicted temps in the …

The Jefferson Lake Fiasco

We went on the sketchiest hike today.

It was at Jefferson lake, which sits in the mountains between the cabin we're staying at and our friends, Clint and Jacqui’s house. It's a very pretty lake, with no one else around, and what seemed to be a nice, easy trail.

A little over 1/3 of the way around the lake, we had a decision to make.. Go all the way around or go back the way we came. This was largely dependent on our old man dog, but also on Kari’s balance and how rough terrain can be exhausting for her brain.

Garth wasn't really showing a sign of slowing down and Kari felt good, so we decided to keep going. This was mistake number 1.

It went from an easy trail to straight up boulder climbing. And since it looked like an easy trail from …

Rilee's Big Walk

So, we're dogsitting Kari's parents' dog, Rilee, right now while they're traveling... and before I go out of town tomorrow, Kari wanted to see if she could walk both dogs at the same time. Our dog is kind of an asshole on the leash, just letting his nose pull him every which way, and Rilee is kind of annoying to walk with as well. She really pulls on the leash and is one of those dogs that violently kicks all 4 feet, tearing up the lawn after every time she pees or poops or whatever. Walking them together was gonna be a chore.

So, we went on the test walk. Kari was holding both leashes and I was just there for support.

There were a couple minor twisted leash issues, but aside from that, everything was going fine... until Rilee had to take …

Walk this way!


Many of you know that I started a team to walk, grill, and hang out in support of that amazing chick, Kari Brooks on May 17.

So we're almost a month out and I just want to make sure you know that we really do want as many of you to join us as possible. All of you!


A lot of you have expressed interest in walking with us but haven't registered yet. To walk with us, you just need to click the orange "Join Our Team" button on Kari's team page or just click this link. The site is confusing and awful.


I didn't originally want to push the fundraising thing, because honestly, we're just looking for an excuse to get everyone together, hang out, and show our gratitude for your support. But as it stands now, Team kbroox has …

The difference between Kari and Nathan

So last night at 3:00am I woke up, looked over and swore that my buddy Nathan was in my bed. I sat there for 5 minutes - out of it - trying to figure out wtf was going on. Why is Nathan in my bed? Why is Kari not in my bed?

Apparently the back of Kari's head looks sorta like Nathan's when it's dark and 3am. So I sat there, trying to figure this out - sort of realizing that I'm retarded, it's obviously dark, and Nathan is not in my bed.

Finally, I came up with a brilliant idea to solve the mystery once and for all. I grabbed the person in my bed's ass.

It was Kari's ass.

Master Kari Brooks

So my wife got her masters and is now officially qualified for the job she's been doing for the past 3 years. ;)

I'm proud of her - even if she doesn't really see it as that big of an accomplishment.

I guess when you love school as much as Kari does - it's no thing. But also - apparently Drake is way easy not as awesome as Cornell College... I don't think she learned a whole lot of new things at Drake, which is a sad thing for a person who loves to learn. I'm not really sure how I feel about that. I mean, we basically just paid a lot of time and money for a piece of paper (which is the only thing that counts, of course).

This could mean that Cornell's education department is amazing. It could also mean that Drake's graduate …

Kari's Twenty Six

Basically Kari's birthday (so far) has been the usual: eating, drinking, family, friends, ya know. It's been good I think.

I got her a mafia book, a spa massage, a special t-shirt, and a fancy meal. Nothing too incredible... but yeah.

This weekend was pretty nice, Steph, Lindsey, and Kari's dad all visited for her b-day. First we hung out at home and pushed our political beliefs upon each other. Then we met a bunch of friends at Taki to celebrate. It was good as always.

After dinner we went to Red Monk, which I'm really starting to hate. It's a small hidden bar with fancy foreign beer, which is a great concept. However, there's at least 1 bartender there that just hates his job. It's ridiculous. The last few times that …


i have no idea what that means, but i think i'm the first person to ever say it. yesssss. Pron: zoh-my-gollerskates.

So anyway. Holy nuts. There are things going on in my heezy for sheezy.

Kari had her surgery last week. Lots of you saw the pics but didn't bother to read the article. And half of those that read the article but not Kari's didn't even understand what was going on... So to clarify, kari had a suspicious lump taken out of her neck last thursday. Surgery went well and initial inspection says that everything's kosher, but it's getting all biopsied up this week. We'll have the results next week.

At the same time, Kari's grandpa had some weird stuff going on. Irregular heartbeat, fluid in the chest, etc. It was …

CR, Busyness, LAIM, and Larry

Man, busy times... as usual.

Work has been insane lately, slightly annoying, but good... and insane. Outside of work has also been pretty nuts. I've got too many projects going on again. I'm building a book display for Kari, coding sites, planning for my next house project, etc.

Today, I wrote a pretty awesome plugin for laim aka aim lite (which is the best aim client ever). Anyway, my laim plugin just takes my twitter status and sets it as my away message at home. I hadn't been setting my aim away message in a really really long time. Now it'll be set, constantly accurate, and updateable from anywhere. I love this concept. Love it. Stalk me!

Besides that though, last weekend was nice. Kari and I went to Cedar Rapids …

Christmas Cookies and Mono Scanners

In the middle of cleaning/working on the house Sunday I decided that it'd be a good idea to start scanning all of my old photos. This kind of thing always happens to me when I start projects. However this time, my decision was retarded. It has completely consumed me ever since and now my house is a disaster. So I've scanned about 1,200 photos now...

Luckily half of my old pics were on advantix, because it was super easy to take them in to be turned digital. Thank you Advantix for your short/awesome life.

That said, you'll be seeing a bunch of old pics appear slowly on the site. Well, maybe you won't see them because I'm trying to backdate them accurately... but they'll be there for sure. Probably in one of these albums:
- /ph…

Chicago - Family Style

Ahhh, another weekend well spent in my home away from home. I love how comfortable I'm getting with Chicago. It's quite nice.

This time we visited the city for 2 milestone events - Vic's college graduation and Kari's 25th birthday. Thursday was Vic's ceremony, which ruled. They had 30 graduates so it was only like 40 minutes, haha. Plus Vic gave me a rose. We celebrated with much Giordano's.

Friday, Kari's B-day - ridiculous. We started the day out right with some mad omelettes at ihop. Then we met up with Kari's dad to shop around Michigan Avenue, etc. Kari got lots of clothes, we all got new Levi's, I got this insane mashup by Girl Talk, etc. We then hung out at a Viand for a second before meeting everyone at Sushi Wabi. …

Another Birthday and Wedding

Whoops, I forgot that I have a web site to write on. A lot has happened lately - tons of wedding planning, Kari had a birthday, Aaron, got married, and I've been having fun.

We ate a lot of nice food for Kari's birthday, I got her a K2 Skyla snowboard, and a Tiffany bracelet. I'm excited to snowboard with her. Maybe she will be better at that than inline skating, haha.

We also went to Aaron's wedding in Canton. It was a ton of fun, we goofed around alot, you know. plus they had the sweetest little towny bar next to our hotel called Josie B's. We had a blast there - Ben rules (he even gave us a penguin sign). Other than that, it was pretty weird being in a wedding 2 weeks before ours. It definitely got a lot of things going …

Kari got Jobz0red!

If you didn't already know, Kari graduated from Cornell with a degree in elementary education and has been Nannying ever since. Not exactly in her field, but whatever - it's helped pay the bills.

Yesterday she got offered a fulltime teaching job at a school in Colfax (~25 minutes away). Today she called and accepted. So once it goes through the school board and all that, things will rule.

She will have her own special ed classroom with mostly behavior disorder kids (K-5). Which is exactly what she wanted. And finally I can get all the bleeper bloppin books out of storage. Plus she won't be working lame hours anymore.

Kari's 23

So yesterday was Kari's 23rd birthday. It was fun. I was sorta stressed about the night and how it wouldn't go well due to my lack of planning, etc. But it was a good time. First we went to Bistro Montage which looks like this hole in the wall on Ingersoll. But the place is really nice. The chefs are right there, they come out and talk to people, etc. Very cool. Plus they made some awesome food. It was definitely edible art.

After dinner we met Nick and Nicole at Club Aura which is a club that opened in West Des Moines a year ago. My aunt has been telling me to check it out for so long... I finally did and it was worth it. It's pretty retro inside with lots of places to sit. Plus, they have DJs that are actually spinning …

Pasta Capri

Kari spilled an entire "styrofoam leftover container" of Pasta Capri in my car. It's a very oily pasta with fettucine, portabella mushrooms, and artichoke hearts.