Professional Touch Paint – Fernando Lugo

What can I say, but THANK YOU. Fernando, you saved me today. I would like anyone to consider Fernando and his team for any painting they might need. We ran into an issue this am, with another Painter. Initially, it was a 2-day project but on Wed, they asked to do on Friday, because bigger projects were running later than expected and they now thought 1-day was enough. I was okay, I noted as long as your done by Friday, we are okay. We have a party Saturday, and need it done. Friday 830 am. Painter arrives. What wasn’t known, is the job went from 2 guys to 1 guy, okay..not an issue, but the painter at my house doesn’t have any supplies (ladder, drop clothes, enough PAINT, etc). Its about 1030 with no movement, so I ask for a status? No contact with the boss, no one is answering.

I needed it done, and with the potential for 2 days initially, and then shaved to 1 with 2-guys, now 1 guy with no paint supplies. It wasn’t going to happen, so I was over it and terminated the work.

What did I have left? I checked out WFC and saw Fernando and his crew. I call him up, ask in desperation if he could help, any possible way to get it in today (its like 11am). Fernando, not only worked to get his team out, he sent 2 guys and came himself to understand the job. Talked it over, assured me it would be done well, and said he was sorry about the experience with the other company. The thing I appreciate is honesty, and pride in your work, whatever that might be. Fernando was honest, and his team was nothing short of professional. If you want quality work, with owner assurance that he cares about you as a customer, go with Fernando. You will not be disappointed.

THANKS Fernando Lugo


Dos and Don’ts of Winter Camping

Winter camping sounds insane, doesn’t it? I mean, who wants to head out carrying a tent and bedding to sleep out in the snow. It is crazy, yet there are adventurers around who relish the idea of spending nights in the cold outside.

If you believe you are one of these thrill-seekers, this post is for you to read as it focuses on the essential do’s and don’ts you have to follow while cold camping.

– Do’s

Proper Bedding

Appropriate packing is necessary before beginning your journey. Instead of taking a single bed along with you, take two or even more. You can put one bag inside the other for extra warmth.

Roll Foam Mattress

Do take along a roll foam mattress to keep yourself dry and warm. You can place it beneath your mattress to get cozier.

Recognize Your Needs

Every human being’s needs are different. Your requirements greatly depend on your fitness, tolerance power, experiences, gender, and age and body fat ratio. So, the equipment you want to take with you should cater to all your needs. It is best to take extra of everything.

Double Check

Make certain that your sleeping bag is warm enough for the climate of your destination. Be ready for below zero temperatures.

Appropriate Meals

Warm food produces heat in the body especially meals full of fats. Take with you food that is high in fats and proteins. Cheese and olive oil should be taken in abundance.

Eat Before Sleeping

Eating right before going to bed will help you in staying warm throughout the night. Good nutritious warm food will generate heat in your body, so eat immediately before calling it a night.

Gathering Firewood

If you need firewood to cook and remain warm, get out collecting it during daytime. It is unwise to go looking for it in the dark, freezing night.

Extra Layers

For staying warm throughout your sleep, throw in a few hand and foot warmers. Keep thin metallic blankets or a waterproof jacket over the top of your sleeping bag. You need all that extra warmth to have a comfortable night out.

Increase The Insulation

Shake air into your sleeping bag. This way the insulation will maximize in the bedding. You can easily do this with your bag upside down to trap in more air. This way air will also circulate in the upper sections of the bag.

Remain Dry

It is really bothersome if you get damp in your bed during night. Avoid keeping your face inside; however you might find it difficult but your breath can produce moisture. Dry out your bag every day.


  • Don’t go to sleep if you are freezing. Carry out light exercises to get your body temperature back to normal before you snuggle up in the bed.
  • You should not work out so hard that you begin to perspire. This would create dampness in your sleeping bag.
  • Don’t get indulged in drinking alcoholic beverages or this way you’ll end up feeling cold. Remember, alcohol makes your body lose heat faster.
  • Don’t breathe in your sleeping bag, keep your face out. This will not cause moisture to collect inside, and make you damp.
  • Don’t start a fire unless you are sure that it is permitted out in your campsite. Some places have strict rules and they must be followed.
  • Don’t ever wear cotton T-shirts or anything not suitable for the cold climate. It’ll ruin your whole camping trip. Instead, wear merino wool or insulating synthetics.

Dear AWV & Wood River Students

Dear AWV & Wood River Students,

ANNOUNCEMENT & SPECIAL REQUEST: We are SO very excited to announce that in 2016, you’ll see some major changes in AWV! For the past seven years, we’ve focused predominately on (1) awareness of women in service to this great nation, (2) educating military women and veterans about the benefits they’re entitled to as well as (3) advocating for policies on Capitol Hill that impact both our military women and veterans, policies like ensuring the Post 9/11 GI Bill afforded opportunities to single-parent veterans, improving VA Healthcare facilities and services for women, repealing DADT, updating the combat exclusion policy… among much more!

Even during the 2013 deployment to Afghanistan of both the Founder and Co-Founder of AWV, the organization has worked tirelessly to do all we could to ensure that AWV continued it’s mission. Because of all of this amazing work and the incredibly rapid and long-needed changes that have happened for service women and veterans since our founding in 2009, it’s time for us to evolve as well. Our primary role now is less about advocacy and policy changes (though we will be taking Congress to task on Selective Service) but more about being the watchdogs and ensuring that the VA furthers improvements as well as continuing to advise and raise awareness among the Pentagon, Congress, and the American people. We’ve worked tirelessly to impact women from strategic levels, now we are shifting our focus to work at the ground level. ‪#‎AWVBootsontheGroundMission‬‪#‎AWVBotG‬

The second phase of the ‪#‎AWVDream‬ starts here and now. The American Women Veterans Boots on the Ground Mission is all about us – all of us (yes, you, too!). It’s three phases; (1) Get to good. This phase is all about taking care of you. AWV members will work to help you not just transition from the military but set yourself up for success, (2) When you’re G2G, you’ll turn around and help a sister. This is all about us taking care of our own, and finally phase (3) is about community. We all joined the military to be a part of something incredible and so much bigger than us. After years of taking care of the world, we are bringing our strengths, skills, and experiences to benefit our families, friends, and communities here at home because service doesn’t end with a DD214!

Today is uniquely special, not only because it’s Veterans Day but because it is the kick off of ‪#‎AWVBootsontheGround‬. We are starting here in Sun Valley, Idaho, the new base of American Women Veterans. We are getting out into our local community and building the foundation of the largest women veterans organization in probably the world! Throughout 2016, we’ll be developing chapters across the country but it starts here.

To celebrate this commitment we have the honor of speaking with elementary and high school students here in our community. We have the privilege of answering their questions while simultaneously educating the next generation that ‪#‎NotEveryGIisaJoe‬!

But we won’t have the time we need to be the voice for 2.2 million women vets at the event today and because we are arguably the most diverse demographic of the US population, we’d love it if you could help us! Below are some questions the students came up with. Help us surprise them by answering the questions in the comments section of this post. During the assembly, we will tell them to check this page out.
We can think of no better way to start our new initiative than with community outreach and we are honored that we will have the opportunity to speak to some of America’s students.

Here are the students’ questions:
1. What made you want to be in the service?
2. Have you ever been in a life threatening situation while in the line of duty?
3. How hard is it to be away from loved ones and to say goodbye to your family?
4. I feel like you would never look at life w/ the same beauty after what you have seen? Is that true?
5. What was the best aspect of your service?
6. Being a female in combat seems intense, what was your experience like?
7. When you are about to take a life, do you do it for the protection of the American citizens or for the hate of the enemy?
8. Do you believe Veterans Day properly honors all Veterans? If not, what else could be done to honor our vets?
9. What was the most difficult part you had to face during War? At times when you are in the middle of the war do you sometimes regret it?
10. Do you have any regrets about the war? Greatest Injury? Are you content with your decisions?
11. Would you ever go back to war if they let you go? What was your most memorable moment?
12. Is it hard to sleep at night during war?
13. How did you feel and what were the challenges transitioning back into the country and society?
14. How heavy is the average backpack?

If you’d like to provide further assistance to our 2016 initiatives:

1. Please donate. Creating chapters across the country will cost $$!

2. Buy – Visit the store and get some of our awesome gear!

3. Volunteer – We are looking for artists, writers, chapter organizers, advisors, etc. Please send your cover letter and resume to americanwomenveterans

My ‪#TransformationTuesday -‬ My story

I would have to say that one of the greatest accomplishments of my journey has been getting my BMI from “obese” to “healthy/normal.” By the time I entered into my first year of high school, I was considered obese. And I was only 15. My doctor kept telling my parents and I that unless I did something about it right then and there, I would have some serious medical issues down the road, including potential Type II diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. But I didn’t care. I just thought, “I can’t do anything about my weight. I’ve tried before, so why bother now?” After finally feeling so over the groggy, nasty, out-of-breath, stuck in a cloudy haze feeling all the time, I knew I just had to do something about it.

I’m so glad I decided to give myself another chance to lose weight, except this time, I did it the right way! No unhealthy diet pills, no starving then binging, no Slim Fast diets and excessive exercising. Just portion control, eating wholesome foods, and daily exercise. That’s it! Nothing crazy.
I’m not going to say that looking good wasn’t one of my motives for losing weight, but getting my health in order was on the top of my priorities list! In fact, my health was so on game this year, my doctor told me to not come back for a physical next year (unless I have a dramatic change in weight). And THAT to me is what matters most; whatever will keep me out of the doctor’s office!
So today, I challenge you all to start thinking about HEALTH. Start doing this for that reason and nothing else. Do you want to enjoy your years with your family for as long as possible or deal with ridiculously costly medical expenses, high blood pressure, diabetes, or even heart attacks?! Of course not! But sadly, that’s the reality of obesity and poor health. If you’re finally ready to turn your life around and reverse the negative effects of a poor lifestyle and start developing HEALTHY habits, email me at katiegetsfit1020 Don’t let the compound effect of your choices now bite you in the butt later. Do it because you care about yourself, and your life! 😊


Becoming a United States Army Soldier

Dear Dragoon friends and family, it’s Thursday and everyone here is working very hard to reach their goal of becoming a United States Army Soldier. After weeks of really nice weather, things have begun to change. The rains rolled in earlier today and we expect thunder and lightning later on this evening. After that temperatures should cool off and this unseasonably pleasant weather will come to an end.

And now for the update:

Alpha Company (Graduation Week): After ten long weeks, Alpha Rock graduated today. Unsurprisingly we had a full house at Baker Theater this morning, with every seat filled with excited family and friends. It was nice to see everyone there today and it was a pleasure meeting with some of the families after conclusion of the ceremony. As I write these words everyone is out enjoying their day pass, spending some more time with their loved ones.

Bravo Company (Week 6): The Bulldogs shrugged on heavy backpacks this morning and set out before dawn on a long foot march to the field. They started Field Training Exercise II (FTX II) today out in the woods, learning how to conduct themselves as members of a squad in a tactical environment. They have spent the day learning how to do “battle drills” and tonight they will execute their very first patrols. They will spend the night in the field—attempting to stay dry—before resuming their training again after sunrise.

Charlie Company (Week 1): The Comanches started off their day with some Physical Readiness Training before dawn—getting in a bit of vigorous exercise to start their day. After that they marched out to one of our obstacle courses and went through “BTT I”—which is a leader reaction course. It started to rain pretty hard by the end of it and they got soaked to the skin as they marched back to the battalion area where they spent the rest of the day getting classroom instruction.

Delta Company (Week 7): Dawg Company rolled out of the “Dawg Pound” just after breakfast and headed out to Range 12 to conduct the Buddy Team Live Fire exercise. Their time was spent conducting fire and maneuver, engaging targets while team members crawled and sprinted from cover to cover. It was a great way to emphasize fire control and distribution in a controlled environment while also reinforcing the tenets of “shoot, move, communicate.”

Echo Company (Week 9): The Eagles are now finishing up the last day of FTX III under the most punishing of conditions. They have been running patrols around the clock and the majority of them are completely exhausted. They are covered in grime and they are plodding along like zombies right about now. They’ve also been getting poured on all day long so they are soaking wet as well. This ordeal isn’t quite over yet, but they are almost there and the light is visible at the end of the tunnel.

I want to once again thank all the families and friends that were able to make it out for Alpha Company’s graduation today. It was a great pleasure to see you all out there in the audience and it was a distinct privilege to meet with some of you. I hope you have thoroughly enjoyed your time together with your new Soldier.

Everyone have a wonderful evening.

Lieutenant Colonel Gries
Dragoon 6