MacKenzie Boone, A History.
As I sit here today, a 26-year-old married lady, with a little baby boy on the way this December, I’ve felt a really big part of me looking forward to recounting my life, to share with all who want to know a little bit more about me. I feel extremely lucky to have had the childhood I had, as I truly feel as though it made me the person I am today, and showed me who I do, and don’t want to be in my future.
I was born in Bakersfield, CA on a gorgeous summer day, June 6th, 1992. I was the youngest of my 4 other siblings, and the only child from my parents getting together (my other siblings are half on each respective side). I was a chunky 11 pounds, 4 or 6 ounces (no one can ever remember, and apparently they don’t put that on your birth certificate anymore…) and basically toddler sized upon birth, which is my ultimate, favorite subject to talk about when someone asks about my current pregnancy, as baby Boone is measuring about 2.5 weeks ahead at the moment (we’re hoping for just a big head, but my doc says this is payback for what I did to my mom, so… karma I guess).
I primarily grew up with my mom, two sisters on my mom’s side, and my grandma (mom’s mom). Things never could quite work out between my mom and dad, and though I loved my dad, I was always a momma’s girl, and I never really liked my mom with my dad… it’s hard to explain. Even at a young age, I felt like my mom and my two sisters and I had a really good routine for the most part, and my dad’s presence to our family was disruptive. We won’t get too much into that saga, but my dad has always been an addict. Addicts choose to take care of their addiction before anything else, and you can assume how this went for my parent’s relationship, and mine with my dad. He was also the father to my half sister and brother, though my sister lived with her mom in Utah and I didn’t meet her until I was probably 11 or so, and my brother, unfortunately, fell into the same, addictive patterns as my dad. As an adult, I have a really good relationship with all of my sisters, and I talk nearly every day to my middle sister on my mom’s side, Destiny.
Okay, back to the story… some of my very first memories were getting into my sister Destiny’s things (we shared a room when I was 4-6) and sometimes taking a few of her things for safekeeping on my side of the room. You see, Destiny is 11 years older than me, and Crystyl, my oldest sister, is 13 years older than me, which I always thought made me older than I actually was. My sisters would let me hang out with them and their friends, play with their things like makeup, costume jewelry (chokers and such, ohhhh the 90s), and beaded bottomed crop top t shirts that my sister would make. They’d play Barbies with me, do random face-painting, and help me find stray (sometimes pregnant) cats that would become our new family pets, like “Jinxy”, “Jenny Craig”, and “Misty Lee”. And then there was my mom. My mom worked her butt off to make sure my sisters and I had everything we needed. Being the youngest of the kids, I got to do a few things as a kid that my sisters didn’t, like dance, which I did for right around 10 years. My mom was and is one of my biggest role models in my life, and made all of us feel so important and loved. There were times when I was bullied growing up, (I was not only a chunky baby, but also a heavy set kid… with glasses, and a reeeeally big gap between my front teeth) and my mom would help me seek out verbal resolution, until a line was overstepped. When I was in second grade, my mom gave me the go-ahead to scare a bully on the playground, (remember, I was a stout kid) and I felt invincible after giving some 7 or 8-year-old a verbal lashing, straight from my mom’s brain, just how we’d practiced. My mom was a nurturer, a trait that I inevitably inherited, because I was the youngest and I got a little more time exclusively with her. To this day, I will call my mom when I’ve had a really rough day, when I’m sick, or when I haven’t talked to her in over a week. It’s pretty nice, she lives less than a 5 minute drive from me, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Another family member who played a huge role in raising me, was my grandma Lou. You know those sickly sweet, bake you cookies, kiss your boo boos grandmas? Well this was not my grandma at all. She was sassy, hilarious, crude, smart as a whip, busy-body, and had the mouth of a sailor or trucker, whichever is worse (which I DEFINITELY inherited). When I was little, all the way through my high school years, I would get dropped off at my grandma’s house (before I started school), or go to my grandma’s house after school most days, while my mom was at work. Sometimes, my other, older cousins would be over at my grandma’s too, which meant I would get to get in trouble for making mud puddles, or get in trouble for flipping my cousins off (after one of them would convince me to do so), or get in trouble for asking to go inside (because we were usually outside… there were a ton of us so I don’t blame her for not wanting us all inside on the couch). But it was fun! Those were the days where you’d be outside ALL DAY, and if you got thirsty, you drank from the hose, and if you got hungry, you ate apricots, grapes, or boysenberries off the vines. My grandma was the second parent for most of us grandkids growing up, and did all she could to keep us out of trouble as we got into our high school years.
As my cousins got older, they stopped coming over to my grandma’s after school, but I didn’t mind, because right around that time, my younger cousin Kendyl was born, and I now had a new, built in best friend. My aunt Cindy, Kendyl’s mom, was the one who introduced me to dress up and makeup, and she got me HOOKED. She wanted a little girl, as she’d only had 2 boys when I was young, so I got to go to her house and play in her fancy clothes and shoes. Kendyl and I would hang out every day after school, and even though she was 6 years younger than me, we got along like peas and carrots. At one point in our lives, I don’t remember exactly when, my mom and I moved in with my grandma, and my aunt and Kendyl moved in shortly thereafter. We weren’t 100% aware of the personal situations that had taken effect for our parents to move in all together, but Kendyl and I didn’t care. We were now roommates!!! We hit a snag when I was 11 and my mom and dad finally pulled the trigger and decided to get married. Remember that part above where I mentioned I wasn’t fond of them together? Yeah… nothing had changed. BUT, nevertheless, my mom and I moved in with my dad and lived the next year or trying out a new family dynamic. Again, when you love an addict, you hope they will choose you and their family over their addiction, but they are incapable. My mom and I moved out and my parents divorced, which would make most kids very unhappy… but not me. I was happy to have my mom back to myself, and to move back in with my grandma, closer to my friends, family, and preferred routine.
Seeing my mom, the divorce, and self-love stages really helped me developmentally, as I was going through an awkward stage called ‘puberty’. My mom and I started going on walks and jogs, learned about protein shakes and nutrition, and self-care together. Around 13, I started sneaking gold eyeshadow and harsh eyeliner to school and washing it off before I came home (for no particular reason… I just hadn’t asked if I could wear it), until I forgot one day and wore my… less than flattering look home. My mom was SO BEYOND COOL. She took me to the drug store within a few days and got me some flattering makeup, and taught me how to wear it. For the first time in a few years, I felt reeeeeally pretty. No, not because of the makeup, because I had learned self-care and self-love! I had slimmed down, toned up, got taller (which definitely helped my situation), and I entered high school with my head held high. My mom had healed from the divorce and started dating again when I was in high school. That was a really neat time in my life, and looking back, I hope if I have a baby girl some day, that I have the time and patience to teach her to love herself as much as my mom reinforced it to me, when I really needed it.
My mom met Steve either at the end of middle school or beginning of high school for me, so circa 2005-6. Steve, my now step-dad, gave my mom the attention and love I’d always hoped for, for her. He was patient when my mom was not (which was most of the time), he was even tempered basically 24/7 (also not my or my mom’s strong suits), and above all else, he cared about her, and about me. One of the single most awesome, early memories I have of Steve was my freshman year of high school. I played tennis, and was rather good. I made varsity my freshman year, and I absolutely loved the sport. My mom made it to most, if not all of my tennis matches and tournaments in high school, and one day, Steve showed up with her. Steve was always big on baseball, which I enjoyed watching, but we hadn’t quite found our clicking topic yet. Turns out, Steve was a fan of any live sport too, and found it really cool that I was a sporty kid. He showed up to my match that day, and after I dealt up an ace serve (meaning the opponent did not return it and I got a point), Steve yelled across the court “GREAT JOB THERE KENZIE!!!” with his fists waving in the air, so excited for me. That memory makes me smile for two reasons: 1) If you know anything about tennis, its a ‘silent’ sport, whether you win or lose. So in the dead silence and still air, Steve’s voice echoed across the court and just made me grin. 2) We’d found our click. I was a sporty kid, and he was a sporty dad. From there on, I could ramble on and on about sports and really anything competitive, and he was game. My parents married in 2010, I gained another dad, and two younger brothers. My family was now complete. I was the maid of honor in my mom’s wedding, and Steve stepped in for my father-daughter dance at mine.
Also in 2010, I started dating Nik. We’d met through a mutual friend in 2006, and I’d actually tried to set him up with my best friend initially, but, she was not interested (thankfully, cause he’s a catch!). We moved out together at the end of 2010 in our first apartment, both going to college, Nik having just closed one of his first real estate deals, and me… unemployed. I’d been working nights at a local hospital, but when we lost our local county contract, I was laid off. Within a few days of moving out together, I set my sights on applying any and everywhere that could be hiring an 18-year-old with clerical experience. Thankfully, after just a week in our apartment, I got a call back to a receptionist job at a local, family-owned oilfield company. Over the course of a couple of months, I learned and gave 300% to that position. When I was bored, I would ask for more work to help other departments with, which is where my manager, Teresa (bless her heart for putting up with 18-year-old me) had other department heads start training me on everything from payroll and HR, to accounts payable. Within about a year, I was ready to learn even more, and just about that time, the department head of Accounts Payable was retiring from the company and confided in me about 2 months prior to her notice that she’d teach me all I needed to know to take over her position. I was on track to have a big girl’s salary, and just a teenager’s age. Lisa retired as scheduled and I took over payables. I learned SO much about accounting from this position, and thank my lucky stars that my manager put up with me long enough to do so. I was young, sassy, and of course thought I knew everything. I wasn’t getting along with a new hire in the office, but said new hire was a friend of my manager’s, which complicated things. I simply could not keep to myself, and within a few months of her being hired, I was job searching elsewhere.
I’d applied a few different places, when Nik’s mom, Kristy, approached me with the opportunity of getting my NMLS license and being on her mortgage loan team. It sounded easy enough, and so with a “what could go wrong?!” attitude, I left my company of 2 years and headed over to Imortgage. Working with Kristy was honestly amazing. Yet another person that I thank for putting up with me long enough to teach me that I in fact did NOT know it all. Within 3 months of working for Kristy, I got my NMLS loan originator license and started learning at a fast pace. She was willing to teach me how to manage time, how to do mortgage prequalifications, and how to generate leads. I turned 21 at imortgage and moved up on the totem pole just one little ring at a time. There was no special treatment, which I was grateful for, and at times, we did not see eye to eye, not uncommon from a normal relationship with your boss. Kristy took me under her wing… some may call this a micro form of managing… what’s that word…? But only for a few short months, until I was turned loose to meet with her clients and issue mortgage prequals for people looking to buy homes! Again, looking back, I have to say, I learned SO MUCH about myself, my work ethic, and just as a young adult. I knew I loved real estate, but for some reason, realtors are not very nice to their lenders… and lenders have a HARD JOB! But after about 3 years at imortgage, I was again, ready to transition into something a little less stressful.
Nik and I had moved a few times, our relationship transitioning from high school sweethearts to a weird adult companionship, and sometimes not the most healthy of cycles. We’d gone through a few rough patches, and had the best times of our lives together. It’s hard growing up with someone and maintaining a relationship that makes you feel always fulfilled and never drained… no one teaches you how to live with someone else. We’d been together right around 5-6 years when we took a 3 month break. We didn’t know at the time, of course, but this break would be the start of a new era for us. We were not the type of people to take ‘breaks’ either. When we decided it wasn’t working, we thought that was forever. We definitely loved each other, it was never a question of that, but more of whether we could fulfill each other, or not. I was ready to start talking about our next step… getting married, but Nik was not quite in that place just yet, and I knew I’d never want to be the person to force anyone into marriage. We took our time, I moved out, we sought separate counseling, and right around 90 days later, Nik walked into my office at imortgage and asked me on a date. In a whirlwind of the next couple of weeks, I was hesitant to believe the people we had become. Separation had made us so much more cohesive and happy with each other, and without. We’d figured out who we were and what we wanted, and our priorities were aligning. In December of 2015, Nik picked me up from work for my lunch hour and had a few places for us to go. We ended up going to look at houses, which was not out of the norm, as he is a realtor… but we weren’t with other clients, which was odd. He informed me on that day, that to show me that he was serious about the dedication to our new relationship, that he wanted to purchase a home together. This was a lot to think about, seeing as we’d only been back together a few weeks, but I went with him and we looked at these 3 houses he had lined up. The 3rd and final house we looked at was an absolute knock-out. I was in love. Later that month, we closed escrow and we moved in together.
From there, the rest is (kind of) history. July of 2016, with our relationship at an all time high, Nik proposed. Maybe I’ll post that story someday too (because it was GD magical, let me tell you). A few weeks after the proposal, I gave my notice at imortgage, and we’d decided that I would move over to Nik’s companies, Ascend Real Estate & Property Management, to help with marketing. Little did we know, his current bookkeeper (who’d come in to work a total of like 3 days mind you) just stopped showing up a few days after I started. I took over bookkeeping duties of all accounting, payables, receivables, human resources, and in house payroll, most of which was outdated or being done incorrectly. We initially struggled to find our work/home dynamic, but again, we reached our equilibrium and handled the office. We made it through very stressful times of losing money, making money, getting sued (a few times, because people are cray), hiring, and firing, and hiring and firing… but HERE WE ARE, September of 2018 with a fully capable, AMAZING staff, a full time bookkeeper just 2 years later, and finally time to focus on sales and other capital ventures. We married in October 2017 and traveled the world for a few weeks afterwards to celebrate our new titles of husband and wife, and after a trip to Costa Rica back in March 2018, we came home a family of three.
This guy is another reason why I am who I am. Constantly pushing me to be positive, to work hard, to pursue my dreams, and to make the best of any situation. He always reminds me that no matter how rainy it is, there will be sun and that we can truly make it through anything together. I cannot wait to see what our future holds, and to welcome our son into this loving, caring, respectful relationship that we’ve built over the last 8 years. So, 3,500 words or so later, you have a glimpse of who I am and what has made me this person. I hope to give you a little more insight on relationships and family, my beauty regimen and faves, and alllllll the noms that happen in our kitchen. Cheers!