Sunday, August 18, 2013

It's Here

I start school tomorrow.  Moreover, I start my Surgical Technologist program tomorrow.

If you ask me how I feel about it...I'm excited!!!  But I'm also scared.  This has been something I've wanted to do for SO long.  It was never time for me to leave my job and chase this dream.  Finally...I MADE it be time.  It's true that if you wait for the right time to do something, you'll never do it.

It was exciting and scary to leave my job and go to school to get my pre-reqs done.  But it still wasn't TIME.

Then I got accepted into the program...but it still wasn't TIME.

NOW it is TIME.  My dream is staring me right in the face, and tomorrow I will begin.  When I think about what the next year holds for me, I get overwhelmed.  So, I guess the answer there is to just manage each day as it comes.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Happy Anniversary to us!

Today is our 23rd wedding anniversary.  July 14, 1990 is one of my most cherished memories.  We married young, and so many people questioned it.  But we knew.  We always knew.  Patrick actually asked me to marry him the very first day he asked me to date him.  LOL!  Yes, really!  We ended up dating 3-1/2 years before we got married.  I wasn't too keen on getting married at age 15!

Getting married young, one thing Patrick and I knew was that we would have to grow...together.  It seems like so many young married couples grow apart as their relationship continues.  We have always strived to communicate, respect, and encourage each other.

I am very proud of us.  I would marry him all over again.  In a heartbeat.

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Friday, July 12, 2013

Lots of Updates

I got in!!! I am now an official student in the Surgical Technologist program!

My interview was on Wednesday  morning, and yesterday afternoon I got the call that I was selected!  I'm terribly excited...and also nervous.  It's going to be HARD.  But I can do hard things.  The hard is what makes it great...right?  LOL!  I've always heard, and I believe that if your dreams don't scare you, that they're not big enough.  I have a mandatory meeting on the 18th where we'll find out about our classes, choose our scrub color, etc.  SO excited.

The big decision we were wrestling with has been decided.  Patrick will not be returning to school this fall.  I'm super proud that he's been able to attend school this long, with his chronic pain.  He'd been going part-time up until last semester.  That seemed to allow him enough "recovery" time to keep going.  Last semester he had to go full-time to complete his pre-reqs for the Rad. Tech. program, and it was SO hard on him.  His pain level was higher, and his energy level was almost non-existant.  His grades suffered a bit.  He was selected for an interview, and I am CERTAIN would have been accepted into the Rad. Tech. program...but it's just too much for him right now.  It would be a 21-month straight, full-time commitment.  He just can't.    Besides his health, having both of us in our programs at the same time, plus Shannon in her junior year, plus my dad's health...would be a HUGE strain on our family.  His health was the deciding factor, but we have realized that it will be better for all of us to get me through my program (which is only a year) and working full-time.  At that point, we'll see how he's doing, etc.  His pre-reqs are good for five we are hoping that he will get to finish at some point.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Tying a knot, and hanging on

Whoa, this week has been unreal.  We've had one after another thing go wrong, need to be fixed, etc.  We are just hemorrhaging money that we don't have.  Scary stuff.  I hope and pray this trend, RIGHT NOW.  We're at the end of our resources, and I'm not sure what we'll do if it continues.

The good news is I did get called for an interview for the Surg. Tech. department.  My interview is on July 10th at 10.

In addition to our financial situation, we're mentally wrestling with another huge life decision.  I'm sorry that's vague...but I don't want to talk about online publicly until we've decided for sure.  Would you say a prayer for us to have clarity of mind and to make the best choice for our family?  I promise that when we've decided I will come tell about it.

Monday, June 24, 2013

A month?!?

I can't believe how long it's been since I've blogged.  Life's been cooking along pretty crazily.

We're all out for summer vacation.  Patrick and I have done two overnight back packing trips. Shan's been busy with her friends.  Dad's health is stable for right now.

Tomorrow I'll be taking my HOBET test, and Patrick has his interview for the Rad Tech program.

Money's tight, but what else is new, ya know?

Friday, May 17, 2013

First VoxBox - Palmolive Soft Touch!

I don't normally do stuff like this, but I get jealous seeing other bloggers get to try stuff for free.  I liked the sound of the Influenster program, so I requested an invite.  A few days later, I was invited to join...and about a week after that I was selected to receive my first VoxBox!   I already have a second VoxBox on the way.  Too fun!

My first VoxBox is for Palmolive Soft Touch dishwashing liquid.  I received two full-size bottles (unfortunately one was damaged in the mail...but Influenster is sending me a replacement) of soap, plus five $1 off coupons to share.

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I received the Vitamin E (pink) and Coconut Butter (white) scents.  They both smell SO good.  The coconut scent reminds me of lying on the beach, being able to smell tanning lotion in the breeze.

Because I love a freebie, I began using them right away, and not only are my dishes nice and clean...but my hands are soft too!  Normally after I hand-wash the pots and pans, my hands and nails feel very dried out.  But after using this soap, they don't!  Awesome!

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I received this product complimentary from Influenster, but my opinions are my own!
If you are interested in giving Influenster a try, let me know...I have a few invites to share!!!

Monday, May 13, 2013

No paragraph breaks...ugh!

Oh Lord.

Once I publish a post, I hardly ever come back and look at my blog.  I was horrified today, when I noticed that despite proper formatting when I compose my posts, my blog has not been including paragraph breaks.  Ugh.  Holy "walloftext" posts.  Sorry about that.  Sheesh.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Finals, Traveling, and Mother's Day...oh my!

So's been a few days, I mean WEEKS, since I posted. Good heavens.

The good news is, I'm on summer break now! Woot! (That sounded misleading...there isn't actually any bad news!)

Studying and finals was intense, but I'm happy to report I got A's on all my finals, and A's in all of my classes. For the month of May I'll be studying for the HOBET test, which I'm assuming I will be taking in June. Also in (I assume) June, I will interview for admission to the Surgical Technology program. Here we go! I'm nervous!

I just got home from six days in Ohio, visiting my best friend as she graduated from college! Oh I love spending time with her and her family. We did fun girly things like manicures and staying up late chatting. We went out for delicious meals, and had a graduation party with her extended family. I rode a motorcycle for the first time! So many good times and amazing memories. Why oh why do we have to live 8 hours apart???

Shannon's had a few busy weeks, with Spring Theatre Showcase, Spring Chorus Concert, Theatre Banquet, her EOCT tests, the opening of The Great Gatsby movie (that she attended in costume, lol), and her upcoming AP test. Girl is BUSY, but of course we wouldn't have it any other way.

And now, here it is the eve of Mother's Day. I feel very blessed to live not only with my sweet daughter, but my sweet mom too. So much love under one roof.

Saturday, April 27, 2013


My anxiety is pushing back today. I'm not sure why, although I can think of a few reasons.

I haven't been feeling great, we're coming into finals week, my dad's health isn't great, the month is ending and the money's tight, I'm going on a solo road trip next week. Any one of those can cause me anxiety, so all of them together? I shouldn't be surprised. But still I don't like feeling this way.

I don't like over analyzing every feeling I have to try to identify if it's legitimate or not. That's exhausting.

Patrick's head is really hurting today (I hurts everyday, but today it's really a bad one), so his demeanor is "playing" right into my anxious feelings. My psyche sees his demeanor, and I feel myself thinking "see? he's nervous about XXX too." Ugh. So. What to do?

I've been studying some for finals, and doing some house-cleaning. But I find myself pretty distracted. I should probably work out. I should write in my journal. I guess those are two good places to start.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Study-for-Finals Friday

I can't believe this semester is nearly over. It has flown by, and with it, my first "year" of college and all of my pre-requisite classes, end too.

As you might remember, I finished my computer class early, so I have three finals still to take. One of them will be in, take at home. I can take it any time between 4/28 and 5/2. The other two (which are also the hard two) are on Tuesday. Guess what I'll be doing this weekend???

I haven't felt very well this week. My allergies fired up in full force, and I've been exhausted with sore throat and ears all week. My head has also been very "swimmy," which I hope is allergy related, too. Because of how rotten I've been feeling, I haven't worked out. Boo. And when I don't work out, I don't eat quite as well. Nothing horrible to report, just not as careful as I was being. And probably related to allllll of that, my anxiety has been acting up a bit too. Again, nothing major...just there.

Some things that have brightened this week relate to my wonderful friends. I have one new friendship blossoming, and two "old?" friendships that are just such a blessing to me. I am a lucky girl.

Shan is ushering for a school play tonight, and then is having a friend sleep over. My house is as clean as it gets and dinner is in the crockpot. I guess it's time to hit the textbooks again!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Sad heart

I don't want to rehash everything that happened, but yesterday was so hard.

My dad, in addition to having small-cell lung cancer and COPD, suffers from Alzheimer's Disease. I think in his mind he still feels 40 years old, and thinks he can still do the things he used to. This just isn't the case. It's not safe for him. Yesterday was a day when it all boiled to a head again, and there was lots of yelling, crying, etc. It was awful. And now, I just feel...empty and numb. I'm still sitting on the couch in my pajamas, and it's 1:45 in the afternoon. I have no classes today, so I slept in after a pretty sleepless night. I got up, ate a HB egg, started dinner and ran the dishwasher.

And now, here I sit. I'm just...sad.

Monday, April 15, 2013

What Should Cindy Do?

I've been making better choices the past several days. It feels good. It feels responsible. It feels like I'm doing right by myself. I've been procrastinating less. The house is cleaner. We're eating home-cooked meals (made by me). I'm exercising every day. How am I doing it? I'm listening to myself. Radical! When I walk through the bathroom, and see hair on the floor...I think "I should sweep that up." So I do. When I sit on the couch, I think "I should exercise." So I do. When I see messy kitchen counters because no one has emptied the dishwasher, I think "someone should empty that." So I do. I'm not sure how well this will represent as you read it. But, it's a shift in thinking from procrastination, which is ruled by the "someone should do that," or "I'll do it later." (Which never comes.) Now when I hear my brain say "should," I'm now turning it into an action item. And that feels better!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Mission Accomplished

It felt good to process all that out of my system yesterday.  Sometimes you just need to word-vomit it all out so you can start fresh.

Last night when Patrick got home from school, I showed him the recipes I'd found, showed him my insanely OCD shopping list, and told him what I was going to do today.  He was really happy for me.  He knows my struggles, but gives me the time to come to decisions on my own.  He has several food issues (gluten intolerance, peanut sensitivity, etc.) and eats quite clean on his own.  I'm more of the junk food hound of the family.

So anyway, today I prepped my four freezer meals...and guess what?  It was easy, and (shhhh) a little fun.  Also?  I'm not good at chopping onions.  I chose two recipes (Savory Chicken, and Sausage and Peppers) that I had pinned on Pinterest.  They were originally posted by Ring Around the Rosies.

Being so new to this, I followed her instructions pretty much to the letter.  I feel all accomplished and domestic now.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Straight Talk

This may be long.

So.  I've kinda fallen off my healthy eating bandwagon.  Not even kinda fallen off.  I've fallen off.  I ate Cheetos for breakfast today.

For the past couple (3?) weeks I just haven't been able to care.  I wanted to eat crap.  I wasn't being defiant.  I wasn't really upset about anything...I just wanted to eat junk.

My school schedule is such right now that all of my classes are on ONE day per week.  This means with a bit of homework and studying...essentially I have six days a week "to myself."  Now, I have a family, and pets, and elderly parents living here...but you know what I mean.

I have been thinking a lot about my habits lately.  Not necessarily doing anything about them...but thinking.  Today, a few things became clear to me.

  1. I eat out of boredom.
  2. I eat for "fun."
  3. I'm lazy and like others to prepare my food.
  4. Diet Coke is a "gateway drug" for me.
Ouch.  Reading that list makes me feel like crap.  Can I just grow up already?!?

Anyway.  I've always known I eat when I'm bored.  It kind of goes hand-in-hand with the eating for fun, and Diet Coke ones, actually.  I think a big problem for me is that eating and food are entertainment for me.  This isn't rocket science...but wow.  Food is supposed to be NUTRITION, not a pass-time.  My negative self-talk has been going crazy while I've been thinking about all this.

"Who wants to eat fruits and vegetables all the time?"  "But what will I eat for fun?"  (STOP RIGHT THERE, SELF!!! Food's not SUPPOSED to be fun.  It's supposed to be food.)  "But I don't want to drink water with breakfast."  "I'm gonna miss all my favorite foods."  "Well, you can still eat them on your free days."

Ugh.  I see so much wrong in there.

How do I go from seeing the wrongness to implementing and LIKING the process of healthy choices?

Patrick asked me to go to the grocery store today.  We got paid yesterday, and I don't have school today.  But I was not looking forward to it.  I kinda hate grocery shopping.  I never know what to buy.  I always worry about the cost of healthy foods, so tend to stick to the "cheaper" choices.  As P was leaving for school, he gave me a brochure that someone in his speech class had given him.  (They had to do a persuasive speech, and this guy did his on the benefits of Paleo eating. His handout was a week of menus and a shopping list. Patrick and I have both expressed an interest in Paleo.  It makes sense to us.) So anyway.  Patrick gave me the list and said "Maybe this will give you some inspiration."

I sat and read over it.  And I liked it.  It made me think of some of the stuff I've pinned on Pinterest, but done nothing with.  Before I knew it, I was at my computer, pulling up recipes.  Then I putting together a detailed shopping list.  I got everything on my list, and nothing more.  And it came to $104, which I think is pretty darn good.  The least healthy thing I bought was pepperoni, which is for a recipe.  I also gone one box of crackers for Shannon, since she likes to occasionally eat cheese and crackers for a snack.

It feels good.  Tomorrow I'm going to prep the food, and create freezer-to-crockpot meals.  I think this will relieve some of my "I HATE TO PREP FOOD" issue that I run into daily.  If I spend 60-90 minutes prepping food tomorrow, I'll be basically done for the WEEK.  That's a good thing.

So now, where am I?  I know in my heart that the way I've been eating is not good for me.  I know that the excuses I give myself are BS. I *WANT* to be fit and  healthy.  And the kicker is...I know how to get there!  The speed bump is MY BRAIN.

I guess what I'm realizing is that I'm addicted to food, and addicted to Diet Coke.  That I can't just ASSume that I'll "wake up" and do the right thing.  That this is going to be have to be a purposeful, daily decision.  And that I'm worth it.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Pushing through

I'm having a bit of a rough time the past few weeks.  Things have just been...stressful, and unfortunately, a lot of times when I get stressed I withdraw.  From friends, from life, from healthy choices...from everything.

I'm ok.  We're ok. School is's just life stuff.

My dad's health has hit another rocky patch, and it's just so worrisome.  With all of the health concerns he has, I just can't help but wonder which rocky patch will be his last.  Y'know?  When he's hospitalized, I can't help but allow my mind to wonder, "Will he come home?"  The good news is...this time he will.  In fact, he's scheduled to come home tomorrow if things keep going well. So, that's great news.

The sale of my parents house fell through...again.  It's a super long story, and I don't really want to sound like I'm complaining...but it's just hard.  Their house is in an extremely remote area, so there isn't much of a market even when the economy isn't awful.  In June, their house will have been on the market for three YEARS.  We never in a million years thought it would take this long, so we did things like started college (living on financial aid), etc.  Now with my dad's health, and us living on an extremely limited budget...having the sale fall through is just scary.  We NEED it to sell.  Just, ugh.

We will get through it.  We always have.  It just gets hard, and I get tired.  I suppose that's normal.

I finished my computer class last week, so I'm taking today to tackle a bunch of jobs around the house that I'd ordinarily love to procrastinate on. It does feel good to accomplish them.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Be vewwy vewwy quiet...

I'm hunting wabbits!

Happy Easter!!!

Sorry for the radio silence.  Everything is going fine over here...just been busy, and life, etc.

I'm excited that my sister is here to visit for Easter and our dad's 80th birthday on 4/3.  He's post-chemo this week, so feeling pretty cruddy...but it's nice to just sit around and talk and laugh.  We had a nice quiet Easter.  The bunny was good to us: he brought us chocolate and iTunes money.  We had a nice ham dinner and watched some movies together.  Good family time.

Shannon has spring break this week.  Today, Patrick is at a doctor appointment, and then we're going to take my sister on a little hike.  Should be fun!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Catch Up

Whew.  Another big week.

Yesterday, our sweet 16-year-old dog, Daisy Mae, passed away. The house is definitely quieter without her.  We got Daisy when Shannon was 5 months old.  So hard to believe she's gone, but we're comforted knowing that she simply went to sleep, and woke up able-bodied, able to see and hear...and is happily chasing squirrels again.  Until we meet again, sweet girl.

Today, another foster family welcomed Ziggy to their home.  They seem thrilled by him, and he is happy there, too.  I sat and talked with them for about an hour, and by the time I left, he was lying on the floor, chewing a dog toy.  He is SUCH a sweet was very hard to do the responsible thing, but I know he will make someone a wonderful forever pet.

In happier news, Patrick and I took our first overnight backpacking trip! We did the Coosa Backcountry Loop.  It was "only" about 11.5 miles...but it was steep.  Some parts of the trail have a 60% incline. Oh Em Gee.  There is such a neat feeling to have everything you need strapped right on your back.  Walking and climbing through God's creation is an amazing experience.  Our biggest highlight was seeing a flying squirrel!  We were shocked by it, and haven't stopped talking about it.  The "worst" part was that it was FREEEEEZING the night we were out.  Literally, the temperature was 25 degrees, with windchills to the low teens.  We loved it, but I think we're gonna wait til a little later in the Spring (when things are warmer at night) before we do it again, lol!!!

This has been our Spring Break week.  It's been full of highs and lows...but mostly it's been full.  I just need to keep counting my blessings.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Happies and Crappies

Hoo-boy, it's finally Friday.  That means it's time for Happies and Crappies...hosted by the lovely Sarah and Stephanie.  Let me know if you participate, so I can come read about your week!

This week was unreal.  So many things happened that COULD be on the crappy list, but then managed to have a happy ending.  My heart has been both broken and overjoyed this week. I'm exhausted.
Scissors and a Whisk: Happies and Crappies Link Up

  • I had two big tests at school this week, and both went really well.  I passed my vital signs practical exam, and got a 92% on my Cultural Diversity midterm.
  • My sweet chihuahua Rosie had a terrible health scare on Tuesday night.  It was either a terrible 2-hour seizure, or a stroke.  I honestly believed that she was dying.  Blessedly, she came out of it, and is here with us...her happy Rosie-self.
  • I found a stray dog in the highway on Saturday afternoon.  I brought him home (to keep him safe), and we fell in love with him.  He is *the best* dog.  We decided that if his people didn't come forward that we would keep him.  Then, after Rosie's health scare, we decided we just couldn't commit to a new-guy.  We have agreed to foster him until Tuesday, and then he'll go to another foster family.  Oh my heart.
  • Today was the last day of school before Spring Break.
  • I'm choosing to look at the good side of Rosie's health scare, but oh my God I was so scared and sad at the prospect of losing my girl.  It was awful.
  • Deciding to give up Ziggy (the stray) was so hard.  He fits in so beautifully here...but it's not fair to our other dogs, nor is it responsible for us to over-commit ourselves to another pet at this time.  I am happy though with how it's turned out.
  • We were expecting a several thousand dollar tax refund.  Our refund was deposited this week, and we discovered that we'd made a mistake on our return.  We got $800 back.  This was a punch to the gut. We've been planning on that money, and as full-time students on financial aid could REALLY use it.  But we will survive.
I'm worn out.  This week was really tough.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Fur-Baby update

Rosie is home and very much more Rosie-like. She stayed overnight at the emergency vet for fluids and observation. Patrick and I are taking her to our regular vet at 3pm to follow up.

Rosie's emergency made us realize that by keeping Ziggy we would be over-committing ourselves. I went to the Humane Society this morning, and we will be fostering him until Tuesday. I met the lady who will then be his foster mom until his forever family can be found. Our local humane society is a NO KILL shelter, so Ziggy will be loved.

And heart needs a hug. This is hard.

Roller coaster of a day

Oh Em Gee.  This day took me for a ride.

This morning I got a call from a lady who says she recognized Ziggy's picture as her neighbor's dog.  She took the people our phone number, but they didn't speak English very well.  Apparently they said they'd get someone to call us.  We're really happy that maybe we've found his family and can reunite them...but then...we LOVE him and want to keep him forever.  Of course if they come forward, we will give him back.  But of course, now (skipping to the end of the story, lol)'s been 15 hours since that lady called, and we  haven't heard anything.  I don't know what that means.  If my dog was lost, and someone (even speaking another language) told me where to find her?  I'd be there in a heartbeat.  So...IDK.

Then I had midterms at school.  First, I took my vital signs practical exam, which means I had to demonstrate all the steps of taking and recording vital signs and anthropometric measurements.  I was nervous about it, but did fine.  Then, literally with 2 minutes in between, I went right into my Cultural Diversity in Healthcare midterm. It was HARD.  Like, really HARD.  I was super relieved to get a 92% on it.

So we get home tonight and play with the dogs, and eat dinner.  Some time about 8pm, we look at Rosie (our black and white chihuahua) and realize she doesn't look right.  She's kind of twitching and her face looks weird. One of our other dogs has occasional seizures, so we thought maybe she was having one.  But, it just didn't stop.  When I tried to have her bear weight, her legs were all floppy, and her eyes were twitchy, yet didn't seem to be seeing.  It was so scary. She was so out of it that I literally thought she was going to die right there on my bedroom floor.  We took her to the emergency vet to see what was wrong.  I could think of NOTHING that might have a happy ending.

The doctor agreed that her symptoms were neurological.  We decided to run blood-work to see if maybe she had an infection.  She did also have a fever. I was praying and praying it was an infection, because the other things he mentioned...brain tumor, stroke, organ failure...are just too sad to even consider.

About the time the blood-work processed, Rosie began to perk up on her own.  She was able to walk, and recognized me.  She even stood up on her hind legs (I was sitting in a chair) for me to lift her up.  Talk about tears of relief.  The doctor is still unsure what has happened.  She could have had some weird seizure, or even a TIA.  It *could* be a one-time thing that she recovers from and we won't have to worry about again...or, it could be the beginning of something awful. She is staying overnight at the hospital for observation and fluids.  Would you please say a prayer for my girl?

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Monday, March 4, 2013

No chip

New-Guy does not have a microchip. We've decided that we will keep him. If his people turn up, great...we're happy to reunite them. If they don't, great...he is a GREAT dog, and fits in well with our crew. 

We're calling him Ziggy.

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Sunday, March 3, 2013

Another dog!

I had some excitement yesterday. 

I was driving home from picking up my's FINALLY fixed. I haven't been driving it since before Christmas. 

Anyway, I was driving home, happy...when I almost hit a dog! It was right in the road...and little! I pulled over to see if he'd come to me, and he ran further up the road. I felt vested, and he was SO small, I decided to see if I could get him. (If my littles ever got out, I *hope* someone would try to help them.) 

So, I was running up the shoulder of the road. Other cars were slowing and stopping, trying to help. Another girl got out and was helping. Finally (after about a half-mile), we got him to where we could pick him up. Now what??? The girl assumed he was mine, since I was running after him. 

I brought him home, and set him up in the garage with blankets, a kennel, food, water, etc. We've put up "FOUND DOG" posters, I posted on all of our local FB pages, and contacted the local humane society and some local vets.  If he's still here on Monday we'll take him to our vet to see if he's microchipped. 

We never in a million years thought we'd consider ANOTHER dog, but with Daisy sooo old, honestly, if we kept him, it won't be too long before we're back to the number we're used to. So. We have a dog in our garage. We're trying to find his people...but we might end up keeping him.  (And oh...I'm totally counting that run down the road (probably a mile round-trip, in Toms shoes, and short sleeves, in 34 degree weather) as my workout for the day.)

Here are a couple pics of him.  Yes, his tongue always does that...he's missing teeth on that side. The picture of him in our garage is from yesterday, right after I brought him home. He was very skittish, and pretty much hiding behind Patrick's toolbox.  The second picture is from today.  Sound asleep in our kitchen while I did homework.  I think he has relaxed. (Modesty flower added for your comfort.)

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Friday, March 1, 2013

Happies & Crappies

It's Friday again, friends!  Time for Happies & Crappies...hosted by the lovely Sarah and Stephanie. I have a good time each week, so I thought I'd participate again!
Scissors and a Whisk: Happies and Crappies Link Up


  • I had a first this week.  I dyed my hair red!!! I've NEVER dyed it before, ever!!!  It's a little spotty in places, and some areas are a bit redder than others, but overall I love it!
  • Shannon had her piano recital on Saturday, and did a fantastic job.  She is now her teacher's oldest student, which means her 
  • Feeling a bit more "together" this week.  
  • Racing (NASCAR) season is underway.  My hubby is a big fan, and I like seeing him so happy.

  • Can't think of anything! Awesome!
Still continuing the trend of more Happy than Crappy.  Yay!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Liebster Award

Firstly, a big thank you to the lovely Jenna from Love from Jenna for nominating me for the Liebster Award.

What is the Leibster Award you might ask? Well, it's an award that is given to new blogs with fewer than 200 followers. It allows bloggers to promote their blog and to meet lovely fellow bloggers along the way.

The rules for the award are the following:
  • Nominees must link back to the person who nominated them. 
  • Nominee must list 11 facts about themselves. 
  • Nominee must answer the 11 questions asked by the person who nominated them. 
  • Nominee must than choose 11 people/blogs to nominate that have less than 200 GFC followers. Nominee must provide 11 questions to be answered by the people they choose to nominate.
So to get started, here are 11 facts about me!
  1. I've been blogging since January 2002 (in various locations...started way back on Xanga), but you'd never know it, lol.  I mainly have used my blog as a journal for myself...never promoted it or anything.
  2. I taught preschool for 10 years, but left my job this year to return to college to study Surgical Technology.
  3. Due to my dad's health, my parents live with us.
  4. I love Hello Kitty and Snoopy.
  5. I'm a big procrastinator...but I'll tell you more about that later. ;-)
  6. I have five tattoos. (left foot, right "index" toe, outside of right ankle, right hip, and left ring finger)
  7. I'm married to my high school sweetheart.  We've been together for 26 years, and married for 22-1/2 years.
  8. I'm a big baby when I'm sick, and love to be taken care of.
  9. My house is never spotless.  I keep a lived-in, and very comfortable home.  (It's not dirty either...but I don't stress on everything being just-so.)
  10. I've spent about 16 years addicted to Diet Coke, but have given up keeping it in the house. I only drink it if we go out to dinner now.
  11. Three things I want to see before I die are the Northern Lights, the Grand Canyon, and the Eiffel Tower. are my answers to the 11 questions posted by Jenna.

  1. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? On one hand, I'd love to say something like New Zealand! But more realistically...I'll say Myrtle Beach, SC.
  2. Are you a Facebook or Twitter person? Definitely Facebook
  3. What is your all-time favorite movie? Oh man.  That is tough.  We are movie people, and watch them all the time...usually rather than TV.  But if I have to pick ONE...I guess I'll go with Apollo 13.
  4. Sweet or savory? Sweet, please!
  5. Who is your favorite person in the entire world? What a question!  Do I choose hubby or my daughter?  My parents or my siblings?  What about my best friends? Oh my.  I can't narrow it down through those I'm going to choose a celebrity, lol.  Tom Hanks! I love Tom Hanks.
  6. How do you like to spend your spare time? I like to hike. I like to play games. I like to watch movies.  I like to sleep.
  7. Are you a Mac or PC person?  I've always been a PC person, but when I went back to college, I bought a Mac, and I LOVE it.
  8. If you could change the world in one way, what would it be? I would figure out how to provide healthy food and water to all.
  9. What is your favorite animal? Dolphins and meerkats
  10. Tea or coffee? For the longest time, it was neither...I only drank Diet Coke.  But now I like coffee. Thank you, college!
  11. What do you enjoy most about blogging? I enjoy having a record of my life, and I enjoy reading about other people's family situations.
Here are the blogs I nominate for the Liebster Award.  I have only 6 to nominate...but I love to read each of them.
  1. Hannah at Our Journey
  2. Annie at The House that Jade Built
  3. Tracey at A Dozen Reasons and More
  4. Tricia at Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries
  5. Andrea at The Simmons Family
  6. Staci at The Skinny on Staci
Finally, here are the 11 questions for my nominees to answer!
  1. Are you a morning person or a night owl?
  2. What is your dream vacation?
  3. What is your favorite dessert?
  4. Do you wear make-up every day?
  5. If you could meet one famous person, who would it be, and why?
  6. What's your go-to comfort food?
  7. Are you close with your extended family?
  8. Are you hoping to add more children to your family at some point? If so, do you have any names chosen?
  9. Do you like to cook? What's your favorite meal to prepare?
  10. I give you a box.  Inside it is your most prized possession.  What is it?
  11. Do you have any "stupid human tricks?" (Funny skills that are kind of odd and random)
OK! That's it!!! Go forth and spread the love! I can't wait to read your responses!

Monday, February 25, 2013

In a weird place

Spent a bit of time "off the wagon" this weekend. Not sure what was up with me. I didn't feel all that great, and comfort food was just calling me. At any rate...I'm back on it now! Just got done riding the bike for 45 minutes, did some calisthenic work, etc.

I'm just in kind of a "meh" place.  I thought about doing Happies and Crappies on Friday, and just couldn't muster the oomph to care. That's not really like me.  I dunno.  

School is going ok. Home is going ok.  I'm just...treading water right now.  My inclination is to think that this is OK.  I've had a lot of big highs and lows over the past months, and if my body/mind needs some in-between time to get itself together, that's ok with me.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Happies and Crappies

Time for some Valentine's Week Happies and Crappies...hosted by the lovely Sarah and Stephanie. I have a good time each week, so I thought I'd participate again!
Scissors and a Whisk: Happies and Crappies Link Up


  • Patrick and I hiked 14.4 miles last Saturday, and it was AWESOME! The trail was rated "difficult," and I can say "YES IT WAS!!!"  But I'm super proud of us, and super proud of ME!!! 
  • Yesterday was Valentine's Day, and while we don't buy into the whole "Hallmark Holiday-ness" of it, we do show each other our love, buy little gifts, enjoy some sweet treats, etc.  Patrick and I each gave each other a backpacking gear item!  I gave him a Platypus 3L hydration system, and he gave me a head lamp.  ROMANTIC!  But actually it is, because it's things to move us closer to our dreams.  We gave Shannon an iTunes card and the DVD of "The Perks of Being a Wallflower."
  • Today is my sweet mom's 77th birthday!  So happy she's here (literally, HERE...she and my dad live in our downstairs) and so healthy.  Happy Birthday, Mom...I love you!
  • Started learning to take vital signs this week. I'm so stupid-excited about it.  It feels like the first, tangible health-care thing I'm doing.
  • I ordered my first stethoscope and BP cuff yesterday, and I can pick them up TODAY.  Can't wait!
  • Patrick is finally ordering the part we need to fix my Jeep.  It's been out of commission since BEFORE Christmas...we've just been waiting and waiting to be able to afford the part.  Every time I walk by "her" in the driveway, I pat her and tell her that I still love her and haven't forgotten about her.

  • Shannon's church youth group went to a big concert called Winter Jam last Sunday night. (Tickets were only available at the door.) They took our two church busses down to the arena in Atlanta, and the concert sold out when HALF of our group had gone in.  Can you believe that?  So, Shan didn't get to see the concert.  She DID get to hang out with her friends, and eat dinner in ATL, but still.  Not the same thing.
  • Went through a grumpy spell this week...lasted about 3 days actually.  I'm wondering if it might be my body adjusting to a lower amount of carbs?  I'm not sure, but I think Patrick and Shannon are glad that I'm perking back up! LOL
Still continuing the trend of more Happy than Crappy.  Yay!

Monday, February 11, 2013

New recipe!

My friend Susan shared a recipe she found on the From Away blog. The recipe is for Two-Ingredient Banana Pancakes. They are gluten and dairy free.  I raised my eyebrow at the notion of TWO ingredients making a tolerable pancake...but guess what?  They were great!

They prepped and cooked up just like the blog showed.  The flavor is delicious, and the texture reminded both Patrick and me of crepes.

I encourage you to try them!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Friday, February 8, 2013

Happies & Crappies

Friday snuck up on me this week!  It's time again for Happies and Crappies, hosted by Sarah and Stephanie. I have a good time each week, so I thought I'd participate again!
Scissors and a Whisk: Happies and Crappies Link Up


  • Lame assignment done for school (it was a presentation in front of the class, but that's not what made it lame, lol) and I feel it went well.
  • Still hiking! 
  • Loved watched the Super Bowl with my family.  It was a great action packed game.  
  • Today is my brother's 51st birthday...Happy Birthday, Dave!
  • Shannon's piano recital piece is coming along well.  Love it when I remind her to practice, and she says "I already did!"  Love that girl.
  • Was able to get enough of our backpacking gear purchased that we can go backpacking!!! Woot!
  • Patrick and I were out last night running errands.  Traffic was bad, so we got hungry and stopped for dinner at a restaurant we'd never been to before.  It was Flip Burger Boutique, and Oh My Gosh it was GOOD!!! Ended up being a fun, unexpected date night!

  • Nothing too crappy this week! 
  • My favorite class was canceled this week because the professor was ill.
  • Backpacking gear isn't cheap, so while it's a THRILL to finally have it, making the decision to spend the money is a little hard.
Still continuing the trend of more Happy than Crappy.  Yay!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Got gear!!!

We got our backpacks! (and tent)...we've pretty much got enough gear now that we CAN go backpacking! Squeal! (We're using tax refund money to get us started gear-wise.) I guess that doesn't really matter...I wonder why I always feel like I need to explain things. 


I got a Deuter ACT Lite 65+10 pack. And Patrick got an Osprey Aether 60 pack. Mine's blue, his is green. 

Our tent is a Marmot Limelight 2P. It's Orange...I mean "Alpenglow." Patrick ultimately wants to sleep in a hammock, since we're pretty sure that will be most comfortable for his neck/back issues...but those are MUCHO spendy, so we're going to get started in a tent, and see how he does. If he's OK, then great. If not, we'll get him a hammock down the line a bit.

Monday, February 4, 2013


The Psychology course I'm taking is online only...meaning the only time I will have to go to campus for this class is to take the final.  I had a quiz I needed to take today.  The study guide simply said to watch the "Dog Video" and then take the quiz.

We'd been studying behavior, so I assumed the video would be about Pavlov's Dogs or something similar. Turns out it was a 3 minute video on this dog with narcolepsy, and the quiz was to write a paragraph summarizing the video.  ::::blink blink::::  That's it?  Boom!  Done with that!

Moving on!

Patrick and I were going to hike/walk today, but he's not feeling great.  He has a doctor appointment this afternoon to get checked out.  I think I'll ride the exercise bike instead.  We did a great 5.39 mile hike yesterday in the WIND and hoo-boy, that took it out of us!  We've done that same exact hike a dozen (or more) times before, but the wind added SO much resistance that we were WIPED out, and seriously thirsty for the rest of the day.

We had fun watching the Super Bowl last night and didn't *really* care who won.  Patrick is a big Ravens fan, but we all are from the SF Bay Area, so we're Niners fans too.  It was an exciting game to watch! There were a few fun commercials but I couldn't help but feel they were mostly lack-luster.  I enjoyed the Clydesdale one, the "God Made a Farmer" one, and the Taco Bell/senior citizen one.  The Doritos screaming goat one made me giggle, and the GoDaddy one made me throw up in my mouth.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Happies and Crappies

It's Friday again...know what that means??? It's time for Happies and Crappies! This fun link-up is hosted by Sarah and Stephanie. I had such a good time last week, I thought I'd participate again!
Scissors and a Whisk: Happies and Crappies Link Up


  • Since it was the end of the month, I checked my weight...and I'm down 7 pounds since 1/4! Yay!
  • In the last 10 days, I've hiked 20 much fun!
  • I got my CPR certification renewed today...done again for 2 years!  Are you CPR certified?  If not, please consider it!
  • My dad has been enjoying bird-watching this week. (Back story for any newish readers.  My parents live with us, and my dad has terminal cancer.  Something he LOVES to do is birdwatch, and we've set up a new patio and feeders for him to enjoy.)

  • I got a migraine on Wednesday and had to miss school, and now my neck is out of whack. Ugh.
  • Not super crappy, but I have what I consider a lame assignment due for school next week.  NOT looking forward to it.
  • Scary weather in GA this week, including a devastating tornado in Adairsville, GA...about an hour from here.  We were lucky to just have torrential rain and heavy wind...but it's hard to hear about deadly weather so close to home.
Still continuing the trend of more Happy than Crappy.  Yay!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Hitting the trail

Keeping at the was my third 5 mile hike this week.  This time, to give my knees a break, I didn't wear my weighted backpack. They haven't been complaining...but I figure I better ease them into this nonsense, lol.

Patrick and I are having some fun conversations about gear, short backpacking trips, etc.  SO awesome.   We're waiting for our tax refund before we buy a few preliminary pieces of equipment, and then we can start sleeping out on the trail! Woohoo!

What's so interesting to me is that now that I have this goal, this passion about other goals just fall into place.  Working out and losing weight has always been something I knew I *should* do...but eh, it's hard.  LOL!  But now that I'm comparing OUNCES in hiking gear weight, I have a very real reason to get my own weight under control. I've exercised 13 times since 1/4.  Feels great. I'm really proud, and it feels good in my brain to finally be going about this the right way.

Here's a picture of me from "the top of the mountain" today.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Happies & Crappies

This link-up is hosted by Sarah and Stephanie. I had such a good time last week, I thought I'd participate again!
Scissors and a Whisk: Happies and Crappies Link Up


  • All A's on the assignments I've turned in so far.
  • A nice little ice storm today that wasn't enough to pull down power lines, but was enough to give Shannon the day off school.  SNOW DAY!  We had a fire in fireplace all day, and have watched movies all day long!
  • I ate really well (healthfully) this week!  Proud!
  • My parents got an offer on their house (which has been on the market since June of 2010!) Please let this be it!

  • Patrick's migraines have been especially bad this week, and now he's sick with a bad ear infection, etc. Poor man.
  • A very troubled woman in our community passed away this heart breaks for her three girls.  The oldest is Shannon's age, and the youngest is 11.  The youngest is the one who found their mother, dead.  So sad.
Still continuing the trend of more Happy than Crappy.  Yay!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


I swear. I feel like a fire has been lit inside me.  Patrick said, quoting Duck Dynasty "Boy this has really set your pants on fire, hasn't it?!" I cannot stop thinking about backpacking! I am SO excited.  Our long-term goal (10-ish years) is to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail.  Our schedule, money, etc will take awhile to get to the point that we can BOTH commit to a 4-6 month endeavor.   Until then though...we are both SO excited to do 3, 5, 7-night treks.  I cannot wait!

Of course, we need to train for this.  Of course, we need to buy gear for this...which is not cheap, so it will be a very prioritized list, and it will need to be purchased in little bits here, little bits there.

I've struggled with my food consumption and motivation to "do something about it" for a long time now.  I've just had a "why bother" attitude.  But now? Now, I have a goal. A very physical goal.  The very truthful reality is the less I weigh, the less I'll be lugging down the trail, and over the mountains.  Suddenly, over-indulging is nowhere near as attractive! Exciting!!!

I'm telling brain is just churning, and it feels SO good.  I was so caught up in my thoughts this morning on my way school that I realized I was driving the wrong way!  I was totally on auto-pilot and just cruising down the wrong street, lol!  Oops.

Monday, January 21, 2013

First "loaded" hike

I just did a 5.6 mile hike...with my big backpack on. I have a big internal frame pack that I used when I did the breast cancer walks. Not sure if it's the one I'll stick with for backpacking...but it's what I've got. So I'm using it for training purposes. I weighted it to 30 lbs...and went for it! My pace was a little slower than my normal pace, but not too bad! 

I learned a LOT though! There's a reason you don't hike in jeans, with regular undies on. OMG...chafing! I should have brought my hoodie, even though it was warm when I started. I've always just carried a water bottle with me...and poo-pooed the idea of a hydration system. But now, I'm rethinking that stance, lol. The biggest thing I learned is that I CAN DO THIS!!!

Also, Patrick has decided he wants to do it with me, which I completely love and think is SO rad.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Guess what

I've been thinking about something for oh...a year or two. I finally said something out loud today. I want to take up back-packing! Like...hike, camp/stay overnight, etc. Ultimately, I'd LOVE to do something like hike the Appalachian Trail, or cross-country, or the Pacific Crest Trail. I'm ALWAYS thinking about it, I am constantly reading backpacking/hiking blogs...and so I'm gonna do it! SO excited.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Happies and Crappies

OK, I'm a day late and (always) a dollar short...but I just ran across a cute, brand-new link up via Nicolasa's blog.

 It's called Happies and Crappies, where you basically post the good and bad of your week. I love a grateful mindset, so the Happies will be easy...and it'll be good for me to get the bad stuff off my chest. The link-up is hosted by Sarah and Stephanie. I'm looking forward to participating!!!
Scissors and a Whisk: Happies and Crappies Link Up


  • A much easier workload in school this semester
  • Getting Shannon's PSAT scores...equivalent to a 2240 on the SAT. OMG.
  • The chance for snow this week
  • I exercised three times this week, and drank 60+ ounces of water 6/7 days
  • A good report from Dad's last PET scan


  • The snow fizzling out
  • Feeling like I was fighting a virus off most of the week.  Blah

Well, I like that trend! More happy than crappy!  Woohoo!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Fighting the lazies

I don't know if I'm unmotivated, super lazy...or have an african sleeping sickness, but oh my word. I would be content to just lie in bed ALL DAY long.

Part of it is that this semester is SO much easier than last semester, work-load wise. Last semester was SO hard that by comparison I'm just breezing along now.

I really do think I'm fighting some kind of bug...but seriously? I have NO energy.  Blarg.

I did have a revelation today.  I'm implementing healthy habits, exercise and food-wise.  Last week I lost 4.2 lbs, which was great!  This week, I didn't lose any weight, which led me to start having all those negative self-talk feelings. The "here we go again" and "why bother" type of feelings. And then I realized...up until now, I've always based any weight loss journey on a week-to-week status. If I had a "bad" week, it felt like a failure.

I completely get the the changes I'm making are for a lifetime, and are not a "diet," but it never dawned on me that if I'm doing something for the REST of my life, I don't need to measure my success in weekly increments. Just keep at it, you know?

So...that said. I'm not going to have a regular weigh-in day. I'm just going to track as the pounds come off.

Sunday, January 6, 2013



Last night, I was watching a movie with Shannon and this yucky feeling came over me.  Half nausea/dizzy...and half just...BAD.  I went to bed without playing any of my bedtime games (helps me settle in).  This morning I woke up with a migraine.  Patrick and I were scheduled to serve communion at church this morning, but I had to stay home.  Sadness.

I slept the morning away (God bless migraine meds) and feel a bit better tonight.  I'm a little swimmy if I turn my head too quickly, and I kinda feel sore all over, but I think it's almost over.

I wanted to finish putting away the Christmas stuff today, but there's always tomorrow.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Happy New Year

2013 already! Whoa.  It came in with a whimper for us, as I became ill with a stomach virus  on New Year's Eve.  I was sick until the 3rd, which we re-declared NYE, and celebrated it then! Much better.

So now, here we are in a brand new year. I'm not really making resolutions, per se...but just reigniting my intentions toward a healthier lifestyle.  I'd like to eat far less processed foods, and move my body more often.

Many people choose a "word of the year" at New Years time.  Something to represent their journey, or a goal they want to pursue.  Something I have a hard time with is change, and I *know* this year is going to be full of some big ones.  Therefore the word I've chosen is ADAPTABLE.

Classes start for me again on Tuesday.  This term I'm taking Intro to Healthcare, Cultural Diversity in Healthcare, Psychology, and Intro to Computers.  Yes, really.  Intro to Computers.  I went to the orientation for it, and all I can say is OH MY WORD.  The first assignment is going to be learning to turn a computer ON.  I think I'll be able handle myself, lol.

OK, I'm starving.  Off to eat dinner...ttys!