Saturday, July 3, 2010

Longtime no blog!

Yes it has been quite a while since I blogged last and at least one of you has let me know it hasn't gone unnoticed! I won't mention names! gjohsojdSARAHjkdlaj! LOL!
Anyway, I have been super busy in the past few weeks. CJ and I moved into our new apartment, we are still getting used to being around each other as much as we have been. I scheduled my NCLEX which just saying so makes me want to hurl! I am taking it on July 20th. Prayers are requested and appreciated! I have been studying with Sarah and a little on my own. I don't think I will bomb it however, it is amazing what I don't remember and what I realize we were never taught! I find it more than a little frustrating that I miss more questions due to questions on things that I've never heard of rather than my own incompetence or lack of memory. If I was having a hard time remembering or getting a concept that would mean I would at least have a base of knowledge on the subject. However, with the stuff I haven't ever seen before I have to teach myself the entire thing. AHHHHH! I'm over it though. I will fight through and not let the stress get to me. (That's a lie. We all know it! CJ has mentioned on more than one occasion that I have been thinking to much and he can tell I am stressing.) I love that he notices but at the same time I hate it. I like living in denial sometimes and if I can convince myself that I am not stressed than I feel much better. But, apparently I am and people can tell.
My sister, Bill, and Dillon arrive tonight I am so happy I don't have to go super long without seeing them. I didn't realize until the other day how much I miss them. We were skyping and I could see that Dillon has grown and changed over the few short weeks we have been apart and it broke my heart. I know it will get easier but, I really hate not getting to watch daily how he grows and learns new things. We do get to go to the Zoo on Tues. so I am super excited about that.
My bridal shower is on the 10th of July and I am excited to spend a day celebrating.
I have been working out with two of my friends (Ashley and Michelle). Yesterday we did a 6.1 mi walk which brings my 7-day-week total up to 21.8 mi! But then we walked up to the theater to get tickets for Ash and Trav's date night and we figured that took us to at least 22 mi. I HURT! I have been overweight my entire life and I can feel what it has done to my body. But, I refuse to give up! I need to do something for myself and even though it feels like I fell down a flight of stairs I  feel so accomplished! So I will endure it!
Anyway I will endure.
I have to get going! I miss you all!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Finally the clouds part!

So it is official! We have an apartment in Canby! We sign and get our keys on Sun.! Yeah I know that is a terrible day because then the weekend is over but we are going to bust ass and get as much in there and then I will end up doing the rest cause CJ has work and school starts back up next week. Perfect timing for him to get out of it!

Sarah and I studied for a bit today on Skype and while we had a few moments of my screen freezing and me not being able to hear her it actually worked really well. So, that means there is no reason not to study. Now the next step is to try a conference. I don't know how many people can be on there at once but wouldn't it be hilarious for the entire group to be on there I don't think we would ever get anything done it would be nothing but a bunch of broken sqwaks from all of us at once. At least that is what I imagine would happen with overloaded computers. But, who knows, maybe it would work and we could have a last few study sessions. I miss our group!

Well I should go. Oh and thank you guys for your support through this rough week. (I know there are only a few people reading this so the majority of you I have talked to.)
Have a wonderful weekend my loves!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

I finally have a few!

So my life has been anything but boring lately. I don't think I could handle boring anyway. I was going to try and get those pics up and that never happened. I will let you in a little on what has happened since I returned to Oregon.

I made really good time and was able to have lunch with CJ last Tuesday in Portland. I had set my alarm for 0530 so I could hit the road early and make it home earlier rather than having to deal with traffic. I ended up hitting snooze for an hour though. I can't remember the last time I did that. However, as you can tell I drove fast and got to P-town in enough time to have lunch with my man and still get out of there before the start of rush hour (3-7). Anyway my parents had a little dinner for me so I could see some of my family. It was fun but went way too long and the important "budget" discussion CJ and I were supposed to have prior to looking for apartment didn't happen. I still amaze myself. I am starting to see these type-A personality traits, nothing against type-A people but I don't like it. AT ALL! When the evening didn't go according to my plan I practically had an incredible hulk moment. When did this happen to me?  Who knows but I am blaming nursing school. So the next day I spent all day looking up apartments and calling around and calling CJ, he was calling me it was a Cluster F***! We found a couple we liked and I had an appointment for the next day to look at one in Canby.

After looking at the one in Canby I was in love CJ left work early to check it out and we decided to apply for it. Unfortunately we weren't able to get it. Long story that I would rather not talk about but, oh well. I was however, devastated.  Especially since the very kind landlord made a mistake and called us saying we got it and our paperwork would be ready in an hour and then 20 min later had to make a sheepish call back to say she had been mistaken. I broke right then and there. Poor lady didn't know what kind of flood gate she opened until it was too late. I was bawling like a baby on the phone. Not my most shining moment I will admit. So we were back to square one and I was in a debbie downer mood. CJ found a nice little 4-plex on the south side of the tracks and we decided that to check it out. 2 bed 1 ba 1000 sqft. Not our ideal location and we really wanted 2 bathrooms but this is over $100 cheaper and we are waiting to hear back on it. If we don't get this one though. I am giving up and building myself a tree house on my parents property for the summer!!

In the mean time we have been literally bouncing between our parents house. One night at mine, one at his, two at mine, one at his. I feel like a ping pong ball and I must say I am missing stability. My one constant has been stress, and, well, that just doesn't do it for me. CJ has been great. We had a couple rocky moments brought on by stress and getting back to being a 1 state couple but he has really been understanding of the amount of stress we've both been under and he has this awesome attitude about it all. I could learn a couple things from him.

I worked out with Michelle J and Ashley on Tues. and I think I am going to continue working out with them. They workout on Tues and Thurs afternoons. After Tuesday though I thought I wasn't going to be able to walk and I am worried about today. I had a hard time yesterday and I am still extremely sore today! But I am going to push through. I am so flipping sick of being the heaviest out of my friends and family and I have to make a change. It is going to happen and I have two great girls letting me join their group to make it easier. Anyway I am going to post a video of DillB that will make you all giggle! Enjoy and once I get a copy of the good pics from my sis and Bill those will be posted as well.

Love you all!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Exhaustion hits hard and fast!!

So I know I said I would post pics today but it's not going to happen. I made it to Ontario, OR! 6 more hrs and I will be home. I contemplated just pushing on and driving through. However, thanks to my family and friends for lecturing me to do otherwise I decided to get some sleep tonight. Boy am I glad I followed their advice. I got to my room made the necessary calls to the fam and now my eyes are having a hard time staying open. While tomorrow brings with it the long awaited home coming it also brings a morning without my sis, bro, and nephew. My morning routine with Booger face that always elicits a smile from that little cherub is going to deeply missed and the beloved naps! My sis and Bill have been angels in disguise for the past 2 1/2 yrs and I don't know how I am going to handle life without the daily laughs we enjoy. I had a really hard time saying goodbye to them today. I can't possibly thank them enough for the lessons they've taught me, the good times we had, and the love we shared. Okay I have to stop because if I go to sleep crying I am going to be all stuffy in the morning. I can't wait for this next month to go by so I can see them all again.
I promise tomorrow will bring with it a good post describing the last 24 hr plus the next as well a pics!!
Must sleep now.
Love to all!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Day 2 in the park!

Today started out a little slow. We started out by heading up towards Mammoth and Tower. The Dunraven pass is closed but we are all okay with it. In my opinion it is the least exciting part of the park. The tourons were heavy today. Stopping in the middle of the road to get a picture of one of the million bison in the park and holding up traffic when there is a pull out 25' up the road. Very annoying. However my favorite touron experience happened later this afternoon, I will explain later in my post. We stopped in Tower to feed Dillon and give ourselves a little potty break. Having lived in Casper for the past 2 1/2 yrs has really jaded me to the experience of seeing the great Prong Horn antelope. It is amazing we had a near miss with a couple people stopping in the middle of the road to see a whopping 7 of them. However they are beautiful creatures as well as the fastest land mammal on this continent. It just so happens though that 90% of their population lives within 50 mi of Casper so we see them literally everyday!
After Tower we decided to head back to Mammoth to see the Great Horned Owl that lives there. We have some amazing pics from last years trip and added a few more today. Between Mammoth and Norris there have been many sightings of Grizzly bears so we were hopeful that we would be able to catch one. WITH OUR CAMERA NOT OUR BAIT! (Bait is what Dillon was referred to as today!) We unfortunately missed out. Aftert Norris we headed back over to Hayden Valley where there is said to be many bears and even a wolf den! There were many cars ahead, we were getting excited... more buffalo! Again a gaggle of cars more than we had seen together at once in the park this trip. Excitement. We park. We scan. We overhear a gentleman explaining what all the hubub is about. "Alright you see that gravel bar in the middle of the river (this is already across quite a distance) not the first one but the second one. Yeah there is a white stick in it. Okay go straight up from that to the second level of sage grass. There's a black dot. Do you see it? That is the back of a grizzly he killed two bison calves earlier and has bedded down there to eat. He lift his head up every now and then." We stopped to see a black dot. JOY OH JOY. But we'll still count it. We headed back to Fishing Bridge to let Dillon eat again (it has been 4 hrs at this point since we stopped in Mammoth.) Bummed and all feeling a little edgy we decided to give Sedge Bay another shot. It is past Fishing Bridge and somewhat out of the way however, we are glad we did! There were cars gathered but not for a dot. There was a Grizzly on the side of the road trying to dig up some tasty morsels. Finally saw a bear. We captured some great pics and headed back toward Canyon to go home. Shortly after leaving Fishing Bridge we encountered another Grizzly but this time we had the most amazing Touron experience! People stopped in the middle of the road ABANDONING their cars. This was on a very narrow two way road. With no way around we sat. I got out of the car because at this point we still didn't know what it was that was causing the jam. I saw the Grizzly took a few pics and jumped back in the car. TWO close bear sightings and one dot! Great way to end the day. We did stop and take pics of the Wolf den. No wolves though. To end the evening we stopped and picked up BBQ. Ribs for dinner. Yummy!

My comp is being super stupid and I need to sleep. I will try to post pics tomorrow. Sorry! LOVE YOU ALL!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees and flowers and clouds and stars. ~Martin Luther

So we started out late this morning. Well, I didn't, I was in the shower at 0630. Not sure why but I have always enjoyed getting the day started early when I am on vacation. My windshield wipers and Jen's were both starting to fall apart so we decided we would try find an auto-parts to fix them. Guess what! In case you weren't aware it is a holiday weekend and those stores in Jackson are closed. AWESOME! Bill was able to jerry-rig mine last night with some neon green duct tape I just happen to keep in my car. I am not sure how but he fixed Jen's too... in the parking lot of NAPA shortly after we read the sign that stated they were closed to observe this holiday. Jackson was also having a parade of some sort in the down town. If you aren't familiar there is only one main road into Jackson from the Tetons which means there is only one main road out. This just happens to go right through the heart of Jackson where all the tourons (Tourist/Morons) were preparing to watch said parade and shop, for things they could probably find anywhere else at prices that wouldn't choke a horse, were convening. Bill figured out a back road we could take to Chucks house and would drop us on to the main road while allowing us to bypass the cluster F that was downtown. For the future if you don't mind a scenic country drive and a few miles of dirt road and want to avoid downtown Jackson, Spring Gulch Drive is the road you want! If you know anything about me you should know that I love back roads and, with the exception of one trip to Dillon, MT, I love a good dirt or gravel road.

The clouds were low this morning so the Tetons were veiled in a shroud of white. If I hadn't seen them before I probably would have been disappointed however, I've seen them quite a few times and I will have another chance on Monday when I drive back to get my car. Anyway, Chuck and Barbara live near the Jackson airport and and have an unobstructed view of the mountains. One that I imagine would be breathtaking looking out the floor to ceiling windows of their log home. I must say I am envious! However, I am pretty sure what they had to pay to build that where it is would probably make God cry. Seriously I can't imagine. They said that yesterday they had a ton of bison roaming in their yard and the fields around their house and Chuck said he has watched thousands (literally) of Elk migrate through his yard as well. After a lengthy and somewhat reluctant coffee break we hit the road.

To start we took the Antelope flats loop that Jen and I have partially navigated from both ends never realizing it was just a loop and that if we kept going we would end up back on the main road and not in deliverance country! We saw many bison and a few elk. Sadly no moose :(

We finally entered the park and made our way to Signal MT lodge where we had an awesome lunch. I had the "Hidden Falls Hummus," which was a pita stuffed with red pepper hummus, cucumber salad, and feta cheese. I also had sweet potato fries on the side and ice tea to drink. HEAVEN!!!

We didn't see much wild life today. Bison including a "red dogie" (baby bison calf), Elk, a pelican, a bald eagle, and a beaver. When I type it out it sound like more. Our goals are always the big things ie, grizzlies, wolves, or  moose. However, I do love all animals and secretly I still get excited about bison and elk no matter how many millions of them we see. We stopped at the Fishing Bridge gift shop our favorite one out of all the gift shops here. Yeah it was snowing... a lot. We have been to Yellowstone many times but never while it was snowing it is like seeing it for the first time. Truly a work of God!

Oh back to Grand Teton National Park Bill wanted me to mention that we parked next to Billy Bob Thornton. Not really. Remember the "wildlife" is not limited to four-legged beings the ones on two can be just as much and sometime more interesting to watch! LOL!

We ended our day here in West Yellowstone, MT and had a bison burgers (yes, morbid, I know!) for dinner. NUMMERS! However, we were treated to some of the worst customer service by the hostess who obviously need a few in the walk-in. She was stressed I know but rudeness doesn't get very far with this family!

I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in.  ~George Washington Carver

Anyway here are a few pics of yesterday and today. Enjoy!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Made it to Jackson!

This is going to be short because I am tired! We left a little late today around 4. Stopped in Riverton for dinner and gas and then forged on. Had to deal with snow, lots of it, over Togwotee pass. Prior to Dubois we saw a bunch of deer and on the way up the pass we saw a moose! This trip is off to a great start! Yes I will admit traveling with an 6 mo old has its challenges but I wouldn't trade it for the world!

Oh and the desk clerk at our hotel apparently gave Jen a hard time because of my Barrel racing window decals. Jen thinks he thinks he is Matthew McConnahey sp? Anyway I am going to get ready for bed now and try and catch some zzz's so my animal eyes are spot on tomorrow.
Goodnight my lovelies!

Love you all!