a new language...

i finally finished my sign language classes. 12 classes at 2 hours each over and done with. i'm so happy that i took the classes and so glad that they are over. i'm undecided if i want to take level III in the fall. not sure if dr. barai will continue to foot the bill....not sure it matters since it really isn't that much money. i just know right now i need a break.
sign language amazes me....so cool. so hard! i have learned so much over these past months and really want to stick with it and practice and self teach. it's frustrating to think i really don't know that much even though it seems like i do.... i feel like i should know more. but when you think about it 2 hours once a week is hardly any time at all. it's impossible to learn a language well that quickly. only 24 hours over the past 3 months...not enough. i want to continue to grow. to continue to learn. to have some stick-to-it-ive-ness!!!
i've debated rewarding myself with a gift. i found an awesome stamp set on ebay...sign language of course. really want to buy it, just not sure how much i will actually use it. it's just so darn cool. click the title for the link...not computer savvy enough to stick it here!!! ;)


there is no place like home....

had a nice mini-getaway with some friends this weekend. headed to st. louis. i sat and watched while the four others played in an all day volleyball tournament. it was so nice to just sit and not HAVE to play. the all you can eat and drink helped too!
russ, jason, christy, and nick finished fourth...i think. not bad considering they haven't played together in ages and one team was almost undefeated the entire day; they only lost one game and there were only three of them!!!
so, the drunkfest began...remember, it was all you can drink! so a zillion jello shots, smirnoffs, and lemon drops later we were a site to see! it was sad that when we got back to the hotel and showered and rested, most of us had headaches!! we didn't even make it to the next day before the onset of our hangovers.
the added bonus was stopping in to see luke. it had been forever. since hawaii, i think. as much as i didn't want to go. i'm glad that i did. there is nothing like spending time with loved ones...laughing so hard you are crying, reminiscing about old times, making new memories. honestly, i think i don't spend enough time with them. i blame it on work. my crazy days that make me want my evenings to be quiet and peaceful. but i must try to get away from this. i always say that there is tomorrow but it's not guaranteed. i cannot take things for granted.
can i just say that our hotel was quite possibly the dirtiest i've been in. i'm glad to be back. my own bed, my own toilet, my own sink, my own tv. there is no place like home!



yes, i made it up. well, it sounds okay when you say it outloud. stick-to-it-ive-ness. regardless, i have none of it. this week i was going to drink the 8 glasses of water a day. was going fine for 3 or 4 days. now, i'm sick of it.
exercising....get started on my pilates videos and go strong. then kaboom...sick of it.
i have absolutely no sticktoitiveness at all.
at least i've stuck with my job for 2 years. my man for going on 12 years. my hobby going strong after almost 2 years. normally, i like to mix things up. weird for someone who hates change. but i guess since i have so many constants you need change every now and again. who knows!
so i really, really want to try to stick with it. the water thing and the exercise thing...i will be strong and find my sticktoitiveness!! ;)



is sooo important. i believe everyone should be happy. don't settle. stand up for yourself and your beliefs. life is too short to focus on the negatives. always try to see the good. yes, i know this is difficult. especially for me since i am such a pessimist... don't dwell on the past and what could have been. live in the now. for the future.
why this topic? why now? because my uncle passed away yesterday. he was a sweet, crazy, and loving man. young. only 60...no one saw this coming. but i guess it is rare that you do. maybe being in the profession i am in lead me to think that we should have some sort of warning...but it doesn't always happen that way.
i started thinking about how he lived life. he marched to his own drummer. did what he wanted no matter what anyone else thought. he was being true to himself. take this example...he wore new balance tennis shoes at my wedding. no biggie, right? well, he was an usher. in a tux. with gym shoes. thus earning himself the affectionate nickname 'sneaks'. when asked about the shoes, he would proudly reply that he went out and bought a new pair just for our wedding! i loved it. totally caught everyone off guard and hopefully made them think!
so, today as i thought about him, life, and a zillion other things i told myself i wanted to live life for me and no one else. now just because i'm saying this doesn't mean that i'm living for someone else. i simply want to remember to keep this in focus. to never forget who i am. to strive to be a better, more open person. i'm not saying that i don't want to compromise either. that i won't do things for others. i will try to do only those things that i am comfortable with and negotiate where needed.
honestly, i am truly happy. i love my life and all the craziness that comes with it! yes, we all have those bad days but who doesn't? sometimes i think those bad days happen to remind us to be grateful for the good. and sometimes i think the bad grounds us. reminds us that life isn't always perfect and we can't expect it to be.
so this was for you uncle bob. we all love and miss you!


the joys of...

homeownership! well, the joys, frustrations, expenses.... the list goes on and on. so nick and i have had our new home for just under two years now and i think i speak for the both of us when i say we couldn't be happier with the purchase. but as is the case most of the time, there are always things/rooms/areas that we would change or do without or whatever. there is always a project!
this weekend we want to try to get moving on our deck. the builders left us with some rickety, nasty steps and we are so ready to move on. so off to menards, lowes, home depot and every other home improvement store in our area. and we still don't know what we want. i don't just want to settle but i don't need it to be spectacular either.
i know this is our starter home. yes, it may not be the average starter home but it's ours. a huge risk and investment we took on. so, as much as i want my 'dream' deck, i know we may not be here for ever. but then again, we may. decisions, decisions. i hate them. nick hates them. what is a couple to do? call your parents. seek their advice, wisdom, knowledge. so here i sit, waiting for my dad to call me back! :)
and i know that this experience will help us with our future home or even homes. i am so glad we didn't build our first house. i don't think that we would have worked out all the kinks and with this house we have learned what 'works' for us. what spaces we use, which ones we don't. what areas we would like bigger...the laundry room! and what we would totally change...the master bath! and we definitely need a 3 car garage!!!
all in all, it's an awesome home. i (we) love the layout and design. i (we) cherish all the memories that we have made and will continue to make. i am so glad that we took a gamble and bought it! i think it's one of the best decisions that nick and i have made as a couple!
now that i am done rambling...must get back to the topic...decks. oh yes, must go look online for some deck building websites..... ;)


i hate traffic.

yes, it's that simple really. i dispise it. big surprise coming from the most impatient girl in the world?!! you know what i dislike even more? construction. why? because most of the time, traffic is directly related to construction.
they have been doing roadwork on an area by my house for months now. they finally finished it and i had been loving my commute to work the past few days. but no, they can't be done. they simply moved it further down the road. so here i am, running a wee bit late for work {it's monday...give me a little break! :)} and bam standstill. in the middle of an intersection, mind you. argh. i was fuming. fine, a little snafu. down to one lane in either direction...i can get over it, as long as we start moving people! so here we are driving along and bam. another standstill. double argh. another one lane section. why not just keep it a single lane? it might help a tinsy bit considering it seems that no one believes in merging etiquette. so irritating.
what is merging etiquette you might ask...well, it's from shannon's book of driving. i know, neurotic. but i have a lot of pet peeves when it comes to driving...maybe we'll touch on that at a later date. now, back to merging. my theory. merging can be much more painless if every other car merged. not 5 cars speeding by trying to sneak in ahead, not one person letting 5 people in at once. a single-file, orderly procedure. merge every other car and don't get out of the lane you are in when you see the sign to merge ahead. we all see you and know what you are doing...it's not nice and really doesn't help the situation.
well, i feel much better now! and since i don't want to leave you with the negativity of my post, i will share somethings i love....
*good mail days
*cute, elderly couples holding hands, still in love
*the smell of fresh cut grass
*massages of any sort!
*sleeping in
*no traffic ;)


ah the weekend....

i'm so glad that it is finally here. this week at work was horrendous and i thought it would never end!!! as for weekend plans, well...nick and i try to have one day where we do absolutely nothing. meaning, have any preplanned events. we can wing it and do whatever we want, whenever we want!
this morning i was in a cleaning mood, so i did get some stuff straightened up around the house. i still have to mop...i hate mopping! tonight we are probably going to have some friends over and grill. i can't wait. we really should clean out the garage but i'm hoping the weather will warm up and we could possibly do that tomorrow. it's a ginormous mess right now! we really need a three car garage...oh well. now we know when we buy our next home it is a MUST.
now, i'm in a creative mood. i'm trying to figure out how to hang some pictures in our bedroom and put some shelving in our hallway. i also have the urge to scrap some lo's. before last night, it had been quite a while...it felt good to get those creative juices flowing!


lots to learn....

can i just say, i had no idea how much work went into blogging! it's kinda overwhelming...how to add pictures, how to edit the format... oh my goodness. i think i just may have to bribe nick to help me and share his computer skills. that, or i need to find my brother!!
i keep trying to change little bits here and there, but i have absolutely NO patience what-so-ever! i'm trying tho! that is what i said i wanted this blog to be about...trying new things?! well, i guess that is sorta what i wanted it to be about...growing, experiencing, learning.
so, if anyone has any tips or hints or even constructive criticism, feel free to share! :)


thanks mom!

card from my mom!!!

so i guess my title is two fold...appropriate for mother's day and appropriate for thanking my mom for this awesome nurse's day card. i know my mom will never read this blog but i think it's nice to put it out there anyway!
my mom is an amazing woman. she is not only a wonderful mom but also one of my best friends. i think it is wonderful to be able to have such a close and open relationship with her! hopefully, one day i can be half the mom to my children as she was to me!
how cool is it that she actually remembers nurse's week and send me a card? i know i don't always remember teacher's week but every year since nursing school i can count on a card. this year's card and message really touched me. maybe it was because she had no idea that i had a tough week and wrote about 'touching' the lives of my patients, but somehow, she knew and wrote a very touching message on the inside about what i do....she really does know me and get me!!!
happy mother's day to all the moms out there!!
and happy nurse's week to all those nurses who may stumble across this blog!!

and mom, thanks for everything you are the best!!! HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!


why blog???

it took me quite a while to finally decide to blog. why do it? because it is easier for me to express my thoughts using a keyboard rather than pen and paper. why? who knows. i'm weird like that! why not do it? because i wasn't sure that i wanted some of my innermost thoughts and feelings out there for everyone to see and read.
we can't help how we feel about something so why be embarrased or ashamed? why not share it? who is anyone to judge others? yes, i said that. a person who is often quick to judge...but i'm trying!
i think i was also fearful because i tend to be super self conscious. i wish i wasn't. i wish i had more self esteem and wasn't afraid. maybe in sharing this blog, i can begin to overcome some of my insecurities. how? i'm not really sure. but maybe putting my thoughts out there and letting myself be more open is a step. a small one, but a step none-the-less!


life and death...

so it's pretty sad that i chose my first topic to be something so morbid. but i can't help it, it's is part of my job. part of who i am. i knew when i chose to become a nurse that dealing with death was inevitable. i thought, i can handle this...and then i took a job in oncology. throughout nursing school, i swore that i would never in a million years work in oncology but here i am, absolutely loving what i do despite all the obstacles.
i know that as nurses we are supposed to treat all patients equally but the reality is that we all do have our favorites! who knows how we get them, we just do... and then there are those patients for whatever reason will stick with you forever. i've heard stories of patients who say nurses have had a major impact on their life. well, can i say that there are many, many patients who have done this to me. whether it's the elderly man that always has a dirty joke to share or the young man who is my age that is always trying to see the positive when all there seem to be are negatives or the woman who is facing her fourth round of chemo because the cancer is back yet again but has the philosophy that 'i've done it before, i can do it again.' for whatever reason they creep in there. they pop into your head when you least expect it. many times the thought brings a smile to my face others a tear to my eye.
i haven't had a really 'down' day in quite a while. but today was one of them. one of my favorites passed away not too long ago and his wife stopped in to see us today. it was SO hard. i have tears in my eyes just thinking of it. he had such a fun personality and such sparkling blue eyes. blue eyes...what she called him. the immense thank yous and hugs she was giving were overwhelming and tearfilled. i don't think there was a dry eye in the office.
it's amazing the way i get to interact with my patients and their families. yes, the interactions aren't always positive and happy but to be able to get to know someone on such a personal level is a privelage. the friendships and bonds that are formed, the tears and the laughter that is shared, the support for one another that is given. it's simply amazing. i have no other words to describe it. i am so proud to be a nurse. to do what i do. to help people.
sometimes when i think of a patient who has passed away...i like to think that they are still with me. some how, some way they are there. a guardian angel watching over me or just them smiling down from above or none of the above....just that piece of themselves they left with me somewhere along the way....