I’ve grown a bit tired of seeing that sappy post heading up my blog, as I’m sure many of you are as well.

Aside from the challenge I face every night I work, things have been great.

There are many happenings here at the homestead, all of which I still need to document with photographs.

Here’s a peek at a current landscaping project, though these pictures show it in its infancy.  It’s all grown up now and ready to face the world.

Derek is back to his robotic ways now that he isn’t working 29 days every single month, and absolutely loving it.  Add to that the golfing, and he is one happy man.

And HA!  I’ve got proof.  He actually posed for a picture with me, and I do believe that’s a hint of a smile on his face.

I hope to go walking around the yard soon wielding my camera so I can follow up with more pictures.  Right now I’ve got a midterm due.  You’d think I’d learn and give myself a break from school now that I am a REAL professional, but do I?  No.  Someday….

The reality of it.

I was just looking at some of my old posts and stuff I’ve written here, and wondered exactly when it was that my blog and I began to lose touch with each other.   In so few words, that can be blamed on nursing school, and now to the fact that being a nurse isn’t as easy as I thought it would be.

I wish I could just sit down and write about lighter things and stop this nonsense every so often about why I haven’t given any blog love in the past couple of years, but I’m currently consumed with trying to find a place for myself in a new career that is sitting on the other side of a chasm hundreds of miles wide from everything I’ve ever known.

I never expected it to be a walk in the park, but I also never expected myself to feel like giving up so early on.

I suppose my eyes were only half mast for the past couple of years, because I never saw the entire picture.  I was never the only person standing opposite them.  I had someone there to support me, to teach me what to teach them.   I was never the person to sit down with them and listen to their fears.  I was never the first person they saw after learning that they’ve got cancer. I was never the only hand they could reach for during a rough time in their life.  I was never the last person they’d look at before they left this world.  I was never the person to get yelled and screamed at because their dinner wasn’t hot enough, or the room was too warm.  I was never the person to get threatened when I couldn’t order their pain medication myself.  I’ve been all of those things now, and so much more to so many people, and it’s scary.

I was also quite ignorant about what it could really be like.  I ended up getting a job in the inner city of one of our country’s most dangerous cities.  No training or advice I’d received over the years could have prepared me for what I was thrown into when I began my job.  I still don’t feel prepared every day I walk into that place, but every single day I walk out of there, I know that I learned something, and that’s all I can ask.

I started this post a few months ago, when I was having a really rough time adjusting to my new job, and while I am still within that “getting to know you” phase of the relationship between having a license to perform as a nurse and actually being a nurse, I do think that I’ve come a long way.  I don’t think the road I’m travelling truly ever ends, but I’ll stay on it as long as I can.

It’s hard.  Challenging.  Frustrating.  Emotional.  I’ve probably experienced every single emotion in just a couple of months, and at first I couldn’t deal with it.  It was overwhelming to the point that I was ready to quit, almost did on a few occasions.  But I managed to take every single one of those emotions and wrap them neatly inside my head, and only use one at a time.  I’m descending slowly to a comfortable level.

I say all these things, and haven’t said the long stream of thoughts still running through my mind, because when it comes down to it, I really do like my job.  There are good days and bad.  There are good patients and bad.  But in the end, it’s the good that remains with me, and I hope it always does.

Where the heart is.

Maybe it’s time for something new.

So many things are changing that I really don’t know what that something is just yet.

Who knows if I’ll ever actually figure it out.

So I’m going to think.

In the meantime, here are some pictures of some happenings.

This past weekend, my entire family gathered at the cottage up north to celebrate the life of my grandmother, who passed away in December.  It was a perfect weekend, and I wish I could have gotten a picture of everyone that was there, because it wouldn’t have been the same without each and every one of them.  I have to admit that my family is pretty awesome.

Here’s me and my sis on the day we graduated Nursing school.  I remember thinking that day that we couldn’t possibly be there already.  But we’ve come a long way since that day back in April.

Here’s me and my mama in Florida earlier this year.  I heart her.

Here’s my hubby in Florida this year.  It took me about a dozen pictures to get this one, but it was worth it.  I heart him too.

This is our newest addition to the family.  It’s fun to look at.

Here’s Derek’s sister and her hubby on their wedding day.  An impromptu luau in our backyard last fall.  It turned out to be quite the party.

I asked these two to smile and this is what I got.  Those little salamanders think they’re slick.

A glimpse into part of our living room remodel that’s been done for more than a year now.

I love this picture.  It was pretty cold out that day and they kept insisting that their uncle take them out on the tractor.

And that’s all the time I’ve got right now.  I’ll be back soon.

2010. In Words.

So after I received a lovely email from wordpress summing up my year, I’ve decided that if I am going to continue blogging, I’ve got to up the ante a little.  I will be shooting for at least one post a month, and for me that’s a lofty goal.

Since my grand total for posts last year was a whopping 4, I’ll take the cop-out and just fill out this questionnaire about the year in general.  I’ll talk about more of this in depth later on.

1. What did you do in 2010 that you’d never done before?

The first thing that comes to mind, and the easiest answer is, skydiving.  And I can guarantee that I’ll be doing that again someday.  Then there’s the sewing.  When I confronted my mother about my want to make a quilt, within a week, I had transformed our guest bedroom into a sewing room.  And I’m glad to say that I’m still using that room!  But the real winner here is that I actually finished a project.  A few to be precise.  And that’s something I’ve never done before.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I’ve never been much for new year’s resolutions, and this past year especially.  I’m pretty sure the only goal I  had in mind was getting through the first year of nursing school.  And no, I am not setting any useless goals for myself for 2011, because for the first time in my life, I’m learning not to always look at the big picture, but instead, the small 5 x 7 that meets me every morning.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

I was there for many, many births last year.  So if we’re talking proximity, yes, I was the nursing student chasing after each and every delivery she could.  Other than that, my friend, Emily had a beautiful little boy, and my cousin and his wife had a beautiful little girl.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

Yes, and this is one of the many reasons I’m looking forward to starting a fresh year.  Derek lost a young cousin and a great-uncle early in December, and I lost my grandmother the morning of the 26th.

5. What countries did you visit?

The wonderful U.S.A.

6. What would you like to have in 2011 that you lacked in 2010?

A baby.  Even if it’s the size of a grain of rice in my stubborn uterus.

7. What dates from 2010 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

December 26th.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Still having a smile on my face at the end of it.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Talking to my friends.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

The only suffering I endured this year was a short bout of tendonitis.  The kind that most doctors now label “texting tendonitis”.  It’s okay, you can laugh.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

Here’s where my inner geek makes an appearance, but hands down, Avatar.  It’ll never get old.  Now I just need to get my hands on a 3-D copy.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

Derek’s.  What can I say, the man keeps me sane.  Though he has been known to drive me insane at times, he still grounds me.  He’s the best support I’ve had all year, and I still feel he deserves a medal for dealing with me most of the time.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

Truthfully, mine.  If there are any new year resolutions for me in 2011, it’s to chill the heck out.  Sometimes I feel like I’m wound so tight, everyone around me would get whiplash from the blast when I finally snapped.

14. Where did most of your money go?

Into our house.  One of these centuries it’ll be complete (with pictures). I promise.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

Okay, I’ve been sitting here for fifteen minutes, and nothing has really come to mind.  I suppose there just wasn’t much excitement in my year.

16. What song will always remind you of 2010?

Ninja Rap – Vanilla Ice (that’s a story waiting to happen)

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Sadder
b) thinner or fatter? Fatter
c) richer or poorer?  Hard to say

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Laughed.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Yelled.

20. How did you spend Christmas?

I spent it with one of the most wonderful people in the world.  My grandmother.

21. Did you fall in love in 2010?

I fell further into love with my husband and family.  At times, I was positive my heart would burst.

22. What was your favorite TV program?

Bones is still my all time favorite.

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

I don’t hate anyone.

24. What was the best book you read?

I honestly didn’t read that many books last year.  But the one that seems to be sticking out is Between Sisters by Kristin Hannah

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?

I wouldn’t call it a discovery, but Beethoven and Mozart got me through many long nights of studying.

26. What did you want and get?

A job.

27. What did you want and not get?

A baby.

28. What was your favorite film of this year?

See question 11.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

My 28th birthday was nothing special at all.  Derek took me out to dinner, then we went shopping, came home and watched a movie.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Less drama.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2010?

Pretty much the first thing I grab in the morning.  Usually consisting of a sweatshirt and jeans.

32. What kept you sane?

Derek and my family still top the list at number one.  Tim Horton’s coffee trails closely behind.  And my iPod ends it at number three.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

I can’t really say I fancy any of the people who corrupt our society.

34. What political issue stirred you the most?

Do you want to talk about politics?  Good, because I don’t either.

35. Who did you miss?

All my friends that have moved away.  They are irreplaceable.

36. Who was the best new person you met?

I met so many wonderful people in school, and so many great nurses out there.  I can’t narrow that one down.

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2010.

That no matter what the circumstances, a smile can make all the difference in the world.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

Ok, the reason it has taken me so long to get this posted is because I’ve been sitting on this dumb question.  The perfectionist in me seems to have reappeared from the dredges of my mind and won’t settle for anything I’ve chosen.  So I am going to have to bypass this one.

Until next time…

My version of the rainbow

 photo

My first quilt.  Also my first sewing project.  Ever.  What have I gotten myself into?

One.

Hi.

Just thought you’d like to know that I am still alive and kicking.  As much as one overworked, overloaded and sleep deprived nursing student can be, I suppose.  Okay, a little exaggeration there, sorry.  It really isn’t that bad.  I will say that the first semester (AKA, the semester that almost derailed my decade long journey through college) WAS that bad.  But, I’m assuming that you’ve already guessed that I did make it out alive.

I can’t say that it’s gotten any easier, but I suppose as I cram more and more knowledge into my brain and add to that mountain of clinical hours I have to complete, it takes off a bit of the stress.  I got through my surgical rotation and am now working in labor and delivery.  But that’s just clinical.  Do you want to hear about the lecture portion of the class?  Try taking six exams in six weeks.  With each exam covering roughly ten to fifteen chapters.  Six. Weeks. Six. Exams.

Are you tired of hearing me whine yet?  I’m kinda tired of whining.  Hence, end of whining spree.

So, what else has been going on in my world, you ask?  Here’s a preview.

My dependable little Saturn finally saw its last day in December.  Courtesy of someone pulling out in front of Derek.  Everyone was okay, minus the fractured sternum Derek nursed for a few weeks after that, but the little coupe just didn’t make it.

I would show you some pictures of the house, and the little bit of progress made while I was on “blog vacation”, except I’m pretty sure the damage is quite similar to that of a tornado paying us a quick in and out visit.  Changing some of the rooms around, some new furniture, you know, just a little bit of this and that.  Those perpetual ‘this and that’s’ of our lives, what would I do without them?

We went to Florida while I was on spring break, and spend most of our two weeks hanging out with our niece and nephew, who we only get to see a few times a year.  There may have been a little jumping out of a plane at 13,000 feet in there as well.

I briefly looked at that first picture and wondered just what was going through my head at that time to give me such a look, but then I remembered what had been going through my head up until the second I jumped from that plane.  What the heck am I doing here?  Except maybe with a different word.  Or two.

And you know what?  I loved it.  L.O.V.E.D. it.  I really wish I could just hire  a full time skydiving team, because I swear it’s better than that first sip of coffee in the morning.  Those four or five minutes when there was nothing but sky around me was one of the best feelings I’ve ever felt.  And if I could, I would bottle it up and give it to everyone.  There is absolutely nothing to worry about.  Well, except maybe pulling that little cord that will hopefully bring you back to reality safely, but that’s what the other guy was for, right?

And me?  You know the little worry bug, daughter of, well, big worry bug?  I didn’t even think about that chute, or any of the things that could possibly go wrong because I was too awed.  Now that’s one way to clear your head.  Never mind all that meditation stuff, and just go skydiving.

And that’s all the time I’ve got today.  I’m beginning to feel guilty because my maternal-child book has been closed for a few hours.  It doesn’t get much rest these days, so I must go give it a little company.

Until next time! (Which I’ll try to make a little sooner than 6 months, okay?)

I can’t even count the number of times I’ve sat down to write this post.  But every time I have, nothing comes to mind.  What does one say after such a long absence?  I know half of you are thinking that I should talk about my kitchen, and I will, just maybe not in this post.  But truth be told, the kitchen is the last thing on my mind lately.  It seems the two percent of my brain that isn’t currently dedicated to school just isn’t enough, and is going in a wide array of directions, most of which I cannot keep up with any longer.  But we do what we have to do, right?  So I try to keep up.

I don’t think I’ve actually told this to anyone, and I’m still not sure why I am, except, you know, all you people (you know who you are) won’t leave me alone about my blogging absence.  For me, it comes down to fairness.  I write here for pleasure, but I also just write for pleasure.  The five manuscripts collecting virtual dust on my hard drive are just as important to me as my measly blog, and since I can’t take time to give them some words, I find it hard to give my measly blog some.  It may sound stupid, but that’s the bottom line. 

I haven’t come to complete terms with it yet, but I am beginning to realize that I need to write somewhere.  And since I can’t dedicate hours upon hours to my fictional characters, I suppose I can dedicate a few hours a week to the real characters in my life.  I won’t be here often (not that I ever really was), but on the flip side, I also won’t be elsewhere in the blog world very much.

I signed on to my reader account recently and began going through the hundreds of posts that I’d never gotten around to reading.  Eventually, I just bypassed most of them, and will start fresh from now on.  I apologize for everything I missed, and really wish I had the time to catch up.  I’m working on getting into this new routine, but I’m sure you all will know when I finally find my footing.

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