Friday, November 30, 2012

getting my style identity back

When I first moved to florida last year I was going through a lot of changes, in some ways i lost my identity I was taking prereqs at a community college, i didn't know where I was, i had just moved, I had just gotten married, even my name changed.

 I sort of lost any sort of style that I had (except for sundays when I wore nicer clothes) i dressed like everyone here, yoga pants and workout clothes, well with the fall weather, I sort remember who I was (well I know the big picture of who I am but...)  I remembered that uhh I dont wear work out clothes...and oh yeah I like to dress up, and I am not that bad at it either (although I have not bought any clothes in a loooong time) so I am working with what I have already.

Anyway, making that dress last week was so good for me and after over a year of all these changes I am finally feeling comfortable with who and where I am, I am grateful to be that person as well :)

this one has been stuck in my head for days

while I am taking practice HESI exams...not sure why

Thursday, November 29, 2012

snap of a finger

Sometimes, you need something and it just appears with the snap of you fingers, or at least it seems as though that is what happens.

For example in Florida it is not that cold, but recently it has started freezing at night, I was cold, we don't have many I started using all the towels that we had, and they are pretty thick so we were warm enough.  Plus Paul wears all the pajama pants he has at one time.

We keep the windows open so that could have contributed as well.

I was talking about it with someone at school, and they said to go check out down comforters as that would certainly keep us warm.  When I was at bed bath and beyond I looked, but the comforters were VERY expensive, and even though we have gift cards still that could cover it, the winter is so short here that I really did not want to spend a huge chunk of gift card money for something we would use for just a few months.

Anyway, so then I was joking about it with someone at church and someone over heard us, and have us a LARGE (huge) down comforter.  I guess someone gave it to them and they never once used it...we LOVE it.  And truly it sort of felt like I just vocalized what I needed and it appeared, so much to be grateful for!

Now this week the weather is in the 70s again, and windy, and PERFECT! still enjoying that comforter!

 (not done but getting there)
spanish moss I love you!

dress I made!

Also I made a dress and I am in the middle of painting...more on that to come!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Tomorrow will mean my fourth Thanksgiving away from family, and even though I know there are much worse things going on in the world than me being absent continually from my family, it certainly makes me remember how much I love my parents and siblings.

I wish I could express specific things I am Thankful for in each of them, but basically I am Thankful for my entire life with them.

I am grateful for my Dad's optimism that he keeps trying and even when it seems impossible to anyone else.
I am grateful for my Mother's dedication to her children and that she always put us first
I am grateful for Sterlings willingness to always share and look out for an include his young siblings
I am grateful Korance always being my friend and someone I can relate to
I am grateful for Ross's honesty, and the fun he brings
I am grateful for Marae's toughness...and that she can tell me when I need a little bit more of it
I am grateful for Janai's gratitude and willingness to express it

Because I am far away from them, I worry and pray often for my family, I hope they are ok, I hope they are making good decisions, I wish I could be near them.

These are pictures of when my parents came and picked me up from my mission, I am so grateful they came and for the time I got to spend with them

unfortunately I don't even have a picture of ross :(

Monday, November 19, 2012

my emerging american identity

I was listening to NPR today, I know listening to NPR again...the elections over...
anyway they were interviewing country singer and played a few snips of their music

I have never been a big fan of country music, but it was nice.

It let me to think about how my perspective of this country has changed in that last few years.

When I was in high school, I wanted to be anything but American.  This was just when the obesity epidemic was emerging and I was embarrassed.  Everything foreign looked appealing and better looking.  Perhaps because of my own insecurities with who I was, I sort of shunned my national identity and clung the the European identity of my ancestors (ahem majored in history with an emphasis on Europe).

But the truth is that I am American, I can't really identify with any other country or nationality. I was born here, my parents were, and so were my grandparents...and some of my great grandparents (although not all)....and some of my ancestors go all the way back to before the Revolutionary War.  You don't need to have ancestors from the US to be american, but in my case I do have that background, and as I become an adult and become secure in who I am I am also accepting that I can love where I am from and I don't have to fight my identity to be different.

Not to say I would not jump at the opportunity to live abroad again, but living abroad actually seems to reinforce to me my national identity...and its a good thing...
now for some patsy cline (I am NOT a texan FYI)
coming home from my mission...back to america

be prepared!

provident living -living with the future in mind

That was the focus of church yesterday, even though we do that already, sometimes almost to a fault it reminded me that there are some holes in our preparation that need to be fixed.

So this month we are going to work on getting a more comprehensive food storage together, and organizing it.

We are buying an extra can each time we go to the grocery store, and putting together a 72 hour kit as well.  I also have been thinking maybe for Christmas we should buy a pump water filter, I have not done any research on it yet, but in an emergency in Florida we will likely always be near water (we live just a few hundred yards from Lake Alice, but that water would NOT be suitable to drink, so if we had a pump filter that could be helpful.

We already have 2 -20 lbs bags of rice that we cook with one brown one white, a 20 lbs bag of pinto beans, and last year we bought a 50 lbs bag of oats...we probably have about half of that if the gas was on we could probably survive for awhile, but if not we need to think about how we could cook what we have....I guess that is why we are stocking up on cans.

I try and clean/organize one thing in our house each today I went through the cans we have and organized them by year of expiration that way we know what we have and we know how long it will last.   I will take a picture tomorrow because I am pretty proud of my efforts.

Another thing we have is plants, since we live in a small apartment we have our plants in buckets, but they do actually result in significant extra nutrients to our diets...and their seeds could be useful too.

There is a lot of uncertainty in the world today (and always), thinking about the future and planning for it does not mean it will work out as planned, but I believe that it will be helpful and is important.  Of course another part of provident living for us is going to school, it is giving us important skills that will allow us to work in increasingly competitive markets, and hopefully by me being a nurse if Paul is for some reason not able to work I will be able to.  Emergencies always happen, and we can do a little now to hopefully make a difference later.

....and who know something like this could happen as well


I was going to write about how thankful I am for my family, and of course it is true, despite the fact that  I am far away from them and I have not seen them for quite some time, I can think of very few things on my list that would rank as high as family.  However maybe I will post about that another time.
Today I am grateful for the Sabbath Day.

Paul works/studies hard all week, I study as well, but he is much better than I am about it.  He is stressed out of his mind right now as finals are coming up and understandably so.  We don't get a lot of time together to just, well, be together, so Sunday Paul makes the sacrifice to not study and set aside the day.  Although Sunday is set aside, it is always a busy day.  We have lessons to prepare, church, getting ready for church, recently baptisms after church, meetings, missionaries, family calls, preparing for the week, home teaching, and often socializing.  By the time all this happens there is rarely any time leftover, to re-group and prepare for the next week.

Yesterday both Paul and I were feeling the strain, and decided to try and do something to calm us down, and relax.  It was so nice, I can relax on my own, but its so much more fun when Paul is around.  Even though we stayed up later than intended so we are both tired today, I do feel mentally refreshed and renewed.  What a wonderful opportunity to do that. I hope we can do this more often.

I know that while I am feeling renewed Paul is feeling overwhelmed, I generally do not help this, and forget all of the ways that he uses his time to help me.  So I am going to try and eliminate those for these next few weeks and try to help him instead of vice versa to hopefully show him how Thankful I am for all of his help.

Its a goal, we will see how it goes.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Its almost thanksgiving

and I have many things to be grateful for so until Thanksgiving I am going to be writing about that...its not novel, but it is important!

So to start off with....

"for health and strength and daily food"

Health, I write about health all the time on here, but I AM IN NURSING SCHOOL, its all I think about.  In Labor and Delivery Clinicals we got to do 2 newborn assessments, and it truly is a miracle to see those tiny newborn babies.  It is a miracle that everything is correct that all that genetic code lined up (I am taking genetics right now) and that all the mechanisms that required that baby to make it here worked correctly.  It is a miracle that I am here with no health issues, that I have been blessed to avoid serious harm or incident thus far in my life.  You never really know how healthy you are until you see all the things that could have gone wrong (or just some of them).  If I started a list, it could go on forever, but just some things to think about.
I am grateful that my body properly absorbs nutrition
I am grateful that my limbs were formed so that I could use them with ease
I am grateful that all my senses and cranial nerves are in tact
I am grateful for lungs and arteries that bring oxygen to all the necessary capillary beds (even my freezing feet)
I am grateful for a heart that beats regularly
and neurons, hormones, muscle fibers, bones, bone marrow, tumor killing cells (we are talking about cancer is genetics this week) and the list could really go on.

When I was in high school, I had all sorts of body image issues, and I complained about my body over and over.  I WAS CRAZY!  A body is such a precious and beautiful part of us, so complex, that it constantly leaves me in awe that we are truly Gods creations.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

if you want to live where it rains

then you should move to Florida!

The rainy season is supposed to have passed, but alas it is pouring outside.
That is fine with me.

Except for it is very hard to dry your laundry outside.

Paul and I go to institute every week and this week was no exception, we just got back about an hour ago. I always feel like it is a chore to go (he must also because we are late every week) but, when we arrive neither wants to leave because it is so uplifting....and fun.  Since there are not a whole lot of LDS students at University of Florida they are more than happy to have us at institute despite the fact that we are married.

Other than that we are just gearing up for the last push until finals and then sweet freedom for a few weeks... there is not much more to say than that, my feet are pretty cold right now.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Today I work

from 3 to 11 at the hospital, did I mention I got a job.

Its homecoming at UF.  I feel like in any other place that would be not a big deal.  But in Gainesville all public schools got friday off for homecoming ...high, middle and elementary! even the community college in town got the day off.  There were parades, the town is swamped with alumni, there were fireworks last night.

We didn't actually see or participate in any of it, but we hear all of it...maybe next year.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

birth control

I know last post was about babies and this one is about birth control....seriously its just a coincidence.

Well a big part of this election focused on "reproductive rights", in fact on of the main reasons that I heard women complain via facebook or in reality was about reproductive rights....

Well, what is a right?  I don't think that anyone was taking about the right to reproduce, or the right to buy birth control in any form.

really what was behind it was not if the right existed or not but who is going to pay for the right.

I think that people should be responsible to pay for their own birth control,  I absolutely think that the government and definitely not a church (that doesn't believe in birth control) should be forced to pay for you birth control.

a right is different from being given something.  and its your right to choose, but the consequences of paying for it you should have to accept.

Of course there are some unfortunate circumstances and times that you cannot, well there are a lot of privately funded agencies out there that can help, but why should someone be forced to pay for your reproductive choices.

Lastly, I also don't like the idea of all this extra estrogen, progesterone and chemicals in general in our water, its not good and free access to it is not helping.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


are really cute...its easy to forget how cute they really are.

Today was my first day of OB/GYN clinicals in other words Labor and Delivery/ Post partum care.  Its sounds exciting, I was was  unfortunately mostly boring and not a lot happened but, we did get to do a newborn assessment on a cute cute cute baby...that was nice.

Unfortunately and surprisingly many of the nurses on the floor were quite the "salty" type,  who knows?  they only have one of the best jobs eva!

Being around these tiny babies reminds me of how important it is to consider the children in all decisions made.

Another thing that I have been thinking about recently is how much vulgar language bothers me, it is highly prevalent in nursing school and it makes me cringe each time,  I don't really know what I can do about it, I have mentioned it to some of those people, they sort of laughed at me. This is unfortunate.

Obviously I am quite distraught by the election results, but so much has already been said....I'll save it for another day when the dust has slightly settled.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

ode to the color red

I happen to have 2 lipsticks and 2 lip glosses all of which are RED (except for 1 pink one from kate's wedding)!  When I realized this it sort of set of my observance of all the wonderful red in my life, and how attracted I am to the color.  My favorite color is actually yellow and I plan on always keeping it that way, I LOVE yellow, yellow walls, yellow paint, yellow house (someday I hope)


when it comes to anything I am going to wear I pick RED.  Red skirt, red scarf, red lipstick, red lip gloss, red shirt, red pants, red nail polish, red suit case, I used to have red clogs that I wish I had not wore out completely.  I have even catch myself wearing red on red on red ...maybe it matches?  Even when its not red on red I often treat red like black as in matching with anything. So this post is just in appreciation of all the red I wear and how much I love it.

this of course cannot do all the red justice because I don't take pictures very often, but I am going to start noticing and documenting all the weird combinations of red I wear.

hopefully this doesn't happen to me!

as the dew from heaven...

Today was my day to knock doors for Romney, it was a nice day, and I love it because I see cute neighborhoods (and I think even the not cute neighborhoods are cute so that's not saying much) that I would never otherwise come across, I get to be outside, walk around, talk to people.  I never want to start but, once I have started I am usually happy about it.

One of the houses I visited had 4 citrus tree right in the front, and the trees were FULL of fruit, so full that much of the fruit was rotting on the ground :(  While I was talking to the friendly home owner I mentioned the trees (and their beauty) and they told me to please take as much fruit as possible because they cannot even give it all away!

So I had Paul drive the car up and we picked as much as we had bags for....I think I have eaten at least 10 clementines today.  When we were deciding what to do with all the fruit that we will definitely not be able to eat before it rots, we of course thought of all the ways we could save it, blend it up and freeze it etc...  We did blend up some of it, we saved some for us to eat this week, but we are going to give the rest away.  As we were going through this thought process of what to do, I realized we were being a little bit like the children of Isreal and the manna in the wilderness.  The manna would fall from heaven each day and some would try and gather extra for the next day or whatever other reason, but when they would do that it would just go bad, so they had to trust that each day the manna would be brought so they would not starve.

In our case its not necessarily like we find citrus fruit like that every day, but the concept that we need to continually trust in what the Lord will bring us, and also learn that a blessing for us should also be a blessing for our neighbor as we should always think to share what we are given because so many times people share with us (in fact just yesterday I was at a friends house and while I was there I was invited to eat with her and it was just what I needed nutritionally) never know who will appreciate it and could be that little extra they need.

So maybe this is a pretty small and insignificant little experience, but it is continually small teaching experiences that help teach us ways to improve and allow our hearts to change.

A packed brown bag of fruit :)
basically this post=I should be less selfish about seemingly insignificant stuff

Been eating these all day...cliche florida :)

even more 

from our garden 

Thursday, November 1, 2012

remembering the cave

Yesterday Paul and I were talking about our first apartment.  We were only there from the end of August to early January, but it was our first apartment after we got married so theoretically it will always hold a special place in our hearts.

It was a small studio apartment and like a said sort of a giant cave.  There were very few windows and so as a result it got quite hot, and stayed warm in the winter. The whole apartment only had one window so it was pretty dark in there as well, actually we loved it at the time, but when we moved to Corry Village (we realized how much more we liked it here)...we love Corry.

In any case I am writing this post so I will hopefully always remember those few first months that we were married.
-remember all our clothes folded in piles on the floor because we had/have no furniture
-remember the closet that I would do my homework when I would stay up late
-remember baking like crazy
-remember our cheap little mattress on the floor
-remember hanging out with our neighbors the strykers
-remember swimming in the pool @ Tanglewood
-remember bringing groceries home into the cave's entry way
-remember hanging laundry out at on the lines at Tanglewood
-remember going on walks in the area sometimes all the way to Publix
-remember aimlessly walking around all the way to campus on Christmas Eve
-remember all of Christmas break together audio books, water color, and book scanning
-remember not wanting to move because we liked it so much

and I guess just remember how special that first year was (and this year as well) and how crazy in sane it was moving out to florida right after getting married and how much our life continues to change and how easy it is to forget about and not appreciate each of the phases in our lives.

***we basically have zero pictures of that apartment or time period but these are the pictures we do have.