Monday, November 26, 2007

Pre-Thanksgiving Feast!

This year Rusty and I invited our closest friends over for Thanksgiving Dinner on Wednesday. We had 16 people in our little apartment! It was a lot of fun and Paige was over all day helping me get ready. After hours of cooking and everything our friends brought over we had enough food to feed an army! Yum...already looking forward to next year!

Fort Myers

Rusty and I decided to get away over the Veterans day weekend. Doing this is so easy now that he gets 3 day weekends! Anyway, on Saturday we checked out the Ford-Edison estates in North Fort Myers. This was a really neat place to see with a wide variety of plants, beautiful homes and Edison's laboratory filled with his experiments for making rubber.

Saturday night we went over to Sanibel Island and watched the sunset. It was beautiful there and we were able to find a lot of pretty shells while we were waiting. However, we were very surprised when we found there was a $6 toll to get over the bridge and we also paid to park at the beach; It was an expensive sunset!! It was all worth it when we watched the sun set though! After that the town was pretty much dead, even though it was only like 6pm! We found a really cute restaurant called the Blue Giraffe which was awesome considering I'm pretty much obsessed with giraffes!

Sunday Rusty was a good sport and we went kayaking! I'm a little crazy about kayaks too and it was a lot of fun. As soon as we were in the water we encountered manatees that came right up to our boat! After that we paddled around a few hours until we got tired!

All in all it was an amazing weekend and we got some much needed R&R! It was also conveniently, our non-anniversary, as we like to call it. November 12th is the day we started dating 7 years ago!

UCF Alumni?

I joined my friend Savanah for some UCF tailgating! It was weird to be on campus as an alumni, not a student! The campus has changed so much by having home games in our new stadium! It was great to see everyone with so much school spirit...for once! I'm really proud of our team this year. Check out the photo album for some cool shots!

Here we are in front of the new stadium!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Camping at Alexander

This past weekend we enjoyed a camping trip to Alexander Springs in the Ocala National Forest. We were joined by our closest friends. All together we had 11 people, 4 tents and 2 campsites! The first night was pretty tame as most of us arrived after a long day at work. Rusty and I were joined by Mike and Michelle, Matt, Tim, and Rachel.

Saturday when we woke up we feasted on pancakes, sausage, bacon and eggs. Later on we were joined by Savanah and decided to go visit the hiking trails which was a lot of fun also. Unfortunately it was just cold enough to not get in the springs that day. Later that evening, Charlene, Grant and Kara joined us around the fire.

Sunday we packed up and headed to the springs. Some people were actually brave enough to get in the water! I was a little too nervous for that because it is where I had my alligator encounter several months ago! Scary! Overall, the weekend was a blast!

What's ahead: Next month Rusty and I are planning a trip to Fort Myers and the 5K Reindeer Run is coming up in December!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

All dressed up for fall

Just thought I'd add some pictures of our apartment to the photo album. I know most people haven't seen our house, or at least not some of the changes we've made since their last visit!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Is it fall yet?

Well, it's been awhile! In the month since we last updated we have been busy as always. Last weekend we went camping at a local campsite in Deltona called Blue Springs. My friend Nikki from work and her husband joined Rusty, Grant and myself for a weekend in the woods. We are thinking about taking another trip sooner than later, especially since we can feel fall coming in the evenings. (That means lows in the 70s instead of 80s!)

Besides all that it is Monday night football at our place again! Every Monday we have a group of about 5-6 over to our place to watch football. It'll be really nice when we have a bigger place to entertain in! As you can see from our seating predicament below!

Here are the boys snuggled up cute together on the couch!

Of course, saving for a house continues! In the meantime we've been spicing up our place and getting some new things including matching coffee table and end tables for our living room and a new china cabinet (well, new to US!) so I can actually display our beautiful dishes that we got for our wedding. We even rewarded ourselves with a new laptop which has been fun playing with. Our desktop will replace a very ancient laptop Rusty was using at work. It's all about justifying the buy!

Work continues to be a blur of activity for me. Nothing about nursing school prepared me for the workload of a nurse in the ICU. I am finding myself to be very slow at completing tasks but I learn so much at work everyday I come home with my head spinning. I have gained so much respect for the men and women who call nursing as their profession because it is certainly not a job for the faint of heart! Right now I am caring for two stable patients on my own, including one mechanically ventilated patient under the watchful eye of a preceptor. This is a full workload for an ICU nurse and it is more work than you could imagine! My training will continue though approximately March.

As for Rusty, things are about the same at work. He is entering the slow season so we are thankful we don't have a costly mortgage to pay each month! Next weekend he is planning on tearing the motor and drive train out of his Chevy pickup. His plan is to get the drive train in order along with some much needed suspension work. Of course this will all come a little at a time!

More later!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Amelia Island!

Rusty and I just returned from a very relaxing stay on Amelia Island, near Jacksonville. It was the perfect get away for us because even though it was Labor Day weekend, it was still a very quiet vacation spot. We stayed at a Bed and Breakfast in their small downtown area. We were even able to walk to dinner each night! The first day we just explored the area, especially the shops downtown. The second day we spent exploring Fort Clinch (a fort used by the Union soilders during the Civil War) and relaxing on the beach hunting for shark's teeth! As always our pictures are posted in with the rest of our photo albums : )

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Our newest addition!

This weekend we added a new addition to our family! Rusty is a gear head in every sense of the word. He has always had mustangs torn up in the front yard, at work, at the apartment, you name it! He was getting tired of his mustang and decided to sell it and start on a new project. We totally changed gears with this one. As you can see he has purchased a 1971 Chevy pick-up truck to restore. This is one car project I'm actually pretty excited about. Check in now and then for updates!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

More summer fun...

Well, we just continue to keep busy this summer. Two weeks ago Rusty and I took Paige and Megan to Wet n' Wild for their $20 after 5pm special. Little did we know they were only open until 9 not 11 and the price was actually $30! Hmm... So we decided to go anyways and ended up with passes for the rest of 2007 for only an extra $7 per person! We will be enjoying those until it gets cold here until, uh, probably into November as some years go in Florida!

Rusty and I also made another trip to Rainbow River. This time we brought more friends and my siblings as well! We also got smart and used one of our rafts as a flotation for our very large cooler filled with snacks and drinks for the 5 hr trip down the river! Perfect relaxation!

Next weekend we are planning a trip to Amelia Island, near Jacksonville, FL. We reserved a cute little room at a bed and breakfast...a first for us! (We are used to the cheapest motel we can find!) This is a much needed couple-time get away! Of course we scheduled this for the most popular beach holiday of the year, Labor Day weekend but it will still be a lot of fun!

Friday, August 10, 2007

My green thumb

I just wanted to show that I in fact, do not kill everything I plant! This is a picture of our tiny, apartment sized front porch with my new plants. My friend Michelle gave me the top of one of her pineapple plants which has taken root quite nicely. She says to expect the first fruit within about four years...haha. The two little pots are my papaya trees.

I am especially excited about those because I planted them from seeds I obtained from an actual papaya. I know this is a pretty basic concept but I'm pretty excited about that. Maybe I should have been a farmer...

Monday, August 6, 2007

Keeping busy!

We have really been enjoying summer time in the past few weeks. Two weeks ago we made a trip over to Daytona Beach and spent the weekend enjoying sun, relaxation and nothing else! On our way home we made a stop at Ponce Inlet where they have a lighthouse and several buildings set up to describe the life of the lighthouse watchmen and other historical information.Here is the lighthouse we climbed up! All 203 steps were terrifying!

The following weekend we went tubing down the Rainbow River in Ocala National Forest with a group of close friends. It was quite a hike (a 2 hour drive) but totally worth the beautiful trip down the river in our tubes! It took 4 hours to complete the run and by the time the afternoon thunderstorms came and blocked out the sun the spring water at about 70 degrees really started getting to us! Of course, we plan on doing this again soon!

We also visited the Orlando Science Center's "Our Body" exhibit. This was probably the most exciting thing I've ever seen in my life. Rusty was just grossed out I think! This is where they have dissected and preserved real human bodies in many ways to show the different systems of the body, like cardiac, respiratory, etc. A very fascinating way to learn anatomy! The rest of the day was spent enjoying the Science Center. It reminded me of many fond memories I had there with my dad and siblings when we were kids!Just one small example of the exhibit! So cool!

This past weekend Paige and I practiced parking for her driving test which is coming up later this month! I think we parked in about 1000 different parking spots but she is going to be a really great driver!! The next day we packed up the car and went to Clearwater Beach. We spent a couple of hours there and then joined up later with my friend Savanah to celebrate her graduation from UCF! Now it's back to the grindstone for a long week at work!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Summer Time!

Well, we have been busy since the last time I posted. Can't believe it's been almost a month. It seems like the older I get, the faster time goes. Anyways, the 4th of July was fun. Rusty had the day off but of course, being a nurse now, I had to work. Luckily I got off early that day and made it home about 4 pm. Rusty was home with our friend Grant and had the famous Keg Grill set up in the parking lot of our apartment complex with the camping chairs out and all. That night we had a few friends over and didn't do much but eat and play with fire crackers!

Here are the guys out in front of our apartment! Ours is on the right with the flag on the door : )

I am due to start my CCNIP program next week. It is the critical care training program I need to go through before I can start my official training in intensive care. The last 3 weeks I've been taking an EKG class to learn the different heart rhythms, and really it's been more of a review than learning session!

As for Rusty, he is in class this week as well. He is taking a class about drivability (diagnosing why your car runs like crap!). This is a challenge for him since he does mostly air conditioning and electrical problems at work. Besides that, he is the youngest person in the class by 20 years and has far less experience than anyone else. It is just one more step in the direction of becoming a Senior Master. In other words, maybe Rusty will have to study for once : )

I am also going to post a blurb about Paige. She has been away all month on many adventures! First, she went up to Minnesota with my grandma to see Alison's graduation. Then she went to Michigan with her and visited more relatives up there before heading up to Higgins Lake. My dad drove from Vermont to pick her up and spent some time with him in Vermont and then traveled to New York City for the first time! What a fun summer!

Here is a picture of her at Nanny and Papa's grave. Wish I could have been there to help with the flowers!

Monday, June 25, 2007

It's official!

So it's now official! The letters R.N. can now legally follow my name! I found out I passed my boards a short 48 hours after finishing the exam; much better than the 3 months nurses had to wait years ago. Now it's on for my internship in the Cardiac ICU I've been working in since November. In July I'll take 3 weeks of class then start an intense training program with hands on patient care for 6 months or more! Maybe by early next year I'll be all on my own! Until then I'll enjoy being under the wing of a very qualified nurse!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Tests and more tests

Well, I took NCLEX yesterday and I am still breathing. It was definitly one of the biggest challenges in my life so far and I'm happy it's over! Although, still awaiting results, I am confident I did well!
Rusty has just finished another round of ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) testing. Passing these tests will help him move up in the ranks at work to become a Senior Master Technician (Chassis master, Drive Train master and Engine master). So far he has passed stering and supension, brakes, climate control systems, and electrical systems. After passing his latest, he is a Ford Certified Chassis Master! In addition he also has completed several tests in the other categories and only needs to take a few more classes to complete those requirements toward Senior Master. Congrats babe!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

New pictures!

I added lots of new pictures to the photo link on the right of the page. My next project will be uploading the ton of pictures I have from our wedding! Right now not much is going on with us except I'm eagerly awaiting my NCLEX-RN exam on Tuesday! Can't wait to have that over with so I can finally say I am a Registered Nurse...Officially!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Trying something new!

It seems like families always have trouble staying in touch and keeping up with each other's busy lives. This will be our attempt to keep in touch and have pictures readily available to share with friends and family! Check out the photo album link on the right to see our collections : )