Thursday, March 25, 2010

Because I have 20 other things to do...

I decided I would spend time blogging!

I really should be studying for my national boards that are coming up on May 6th, but I just can't seem to find the motivation... Maybe when I realize I have 2 years worth of material to study in 6 weeks and that the outcome of that exam decides our future... then maybe I'll find some motivation to study :/

...Still not coming...

This past weekend, Dan has gotten really interested and intrigued by this Project 365 idea. I don't know if you've heard of it, but you take 1 picture a day for an entire year of just the everyday things you do. Then at the end of the year, you can look back and really see what you're life is really like, by looking at all the trivial things you spend your time doing.

He hasn't really been totally into blogging or anything like that, so he's trying it out to see if he'll be able to do it before officially starting it up. If you'd like to see what he has so far, and maybe even leave a comment, the website is here.

My gardening has started to come to a sad close...since the other day I came home to my daisies outside, and they looked like this

I'm not sure what happened to make them get that way? They were perfectly fine, standing up straight and blooming when I left that morning...but then when I got home, they looked like that. I suppose I just need to wait to plant anything else until I can do it outside and really spend the time they need to get them growing strong.

I started another project over Spring Break, that I haven't decided if I really know what I'm doing. I have been wanting to make a quilt out of all of mine and Dan's old t-shirts. We have so many just laying around and taking up space in our drawers, and we never ever wear them. So, since I didn't feel like I just wanted to cart them off to DI, I got the idea to make a blanket out of them.

Well, I don't have a sewing machine...or the knowledge of how to sew more than a button on a pair of pants or a small hole closed...but I figured "hey, it's Spring Break, why not try to figure it out?" So I borrowed an awesome sewing machine from a sister who used to be in our ward. Dan teaches her early morning seminary class occasionally and is scheduled to teach it toward the end of April. So I figured I would try it and see how it goes/how much I can get done by then, and then he can bring it back to her at the end of April.

I brought the machine home, got it all set up, went to Joanns and bought a rotary cutter and a cutting mat, and then came home and didn't really know where or how to start. I ended up just starting to cut the shirts into 12x12 squares, using a piece of scrapbook cardstock as my stencil. I have 5 shirts cut...

and probably about 20 left to do...

I am really excited about it, and am enjoying making it, but I seem to get a little overwhelmed sometimes because I don't want to mess it up or have it not end up working when I get ready to put everything together. Have any of you ever made a tee shirt quilt before? Have any pointers? Any just basic sewing knowledge that you can share? I think the cutting of the shirts is going to be the easy part. Once I finish all the cutting and get ready to use the sewing machine to sew them all together, then I think I might freak a little. We'll see...more updates to come.

We have planned and are getting ready for our annual April Conference trip to Utah next weekend. Dan always has a mission reunion the Friday before April Conference, and they insist that he comes to play the piano for it. They say it wouldn't be the same without him. Every year he says it will probably be the last one, because most of the elders he knows have been home for 3 or more years and generally don't come to the reunions anymore. But every year we go back for one last time. I enjoy it though. Since I had never been to Utah until I married Dan almost 3 years ago, I enjoy going everytime and being able to feel of the spirit that is there. We figured it out, and realized since we've been married, we have only been home for 2 General Conferences. We have been in Utah for every other one. This year we are planning to take his 15 year old brother Kyle, and his 12 year old sister Lacey with us. It should be an adventure!

Well, I have finally run out of time, and need to go get ready for class and clinic tonight. May can't come soon enough...

Thursday, March 18, 2010


A couple of days ago, I had the idea come to me that I wanted to learn how to grow flowers. I love flowers and they bring so much color and beauty to the earth; so I decided I wanted to learn how to grow and cultivate flowers so when we move into our house later this year, I'll be able to plant a flower garden in the backyard and maybe even some in the front to add some color and life to our yards.

I had no idea where to start. I have no experience with flowers to know what flowers grow at what time of the year, which ones need constant sun vs. shade, which ones grow well in pots in the house vs. in the ground outside, etc. So...I called my grandma.

My grandparents in Chicago have different types of flowers and ferns, etc. growing all around their house outside. They have the sun needing ones on the south side of the house, the part shade flowers on the east and west sides, etc. I knew she'd be able to help me, and always enjoys when I call to ask her how to do different grandmother-ish things.

She advised me to get some geraniums, petunias and a few marigolds to put in a pot out on the porch. It sounded like a good plan to me, so I went to the garden center at Target. I didn't realize how big those 3 plants would be, and realized my grandma was thinking of a medium-large sized pot to go outside. I was wanting more something to grow inside in a small pot to prevent any of the random animals & people that roam around my house outside from eating/knocking it over, etc. So I looked around for a good 30 minutes, reading the cards inside the plants, looking at the different sizes of pots, and deciding what would be best for me.

Here's what I came home with...

I saw the African Daisies, and fell in love. Daisies are my favorite flower, but I wasn't sure if I could grow Gerbera Daisies inside... So, these white African Daisies were perfect!

Then I saw these cute pink primroses that were $1.29, so I thought why not? I wanted to have a couple different kinds to get some good experience, but didn't want to spend a ton just in case I ended up killing them.

The primroses are supposed to be in partial shade, and therefore sit on my kitchen table next to a western window. The daisies are supposed to be in full sun, but are a hardy type of flower, which means they will grow even in less than perfect conditions. They sit on our new kitchen table in front of the other western window.

When I bought them on Tuesday, they each had 3 blossoms on them. Now, as you can see, the primroses have about 5 open, and a couple more that will probably be open by tomorrow. The daisies have 5 or 6 open today and a couple that look like they might be open by tomorrow.

I'm very excited about my new found love for growing flowers, and am excited to move into a place where I can actually make a garden for them. Also, in this exploration of growing things, I decided I'd like to try to grow vegetables in a garden as well. That I won't attempt to start until I have somewhere that I can plant things in the ground, but I think it would be a good hobby and a great way to save money on vegetables!

Do any of you have flower or vegetable gardens? If so, what do you grow in them and can you give me any advice?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Anesthesia Certified!

Last weekend I finally took my Anesthesia Board Exam. I had been studying for close to 2 weeks straight, and was SO ready to get it over with. My sweet husband was helping me study almost the whole week before, including taking a packet of practice questions with us to Oregano's on Saturday night for dinner and quizzing me all through dinner. I love when he helps me study because he often doesn't know how to pronounce half the words, and even if he does, he usually makes some random hilarious joke about the material that I could never forget.

Friday night we drove to Mesa after leaving our dogs with Dan's brothers for the night. (They came for a spring training game and took care of our dogs for the night) I wanted to keep studying that whole night, but I didn't really know what else to study. I felt good about all the material I had studied and felt like I knew it pretty well. But I just felt like the night before a huge exam I should still be studying. Dan was good at keeping my mind off of it and talking to me about other things like spring break that I was excited to get to.

I had come down with a cold the week before, of course, and had an extremely stuffed nose and a slight cough. I had called in sick to school 2 days that week in hopes of resting enough to get over the cold before the test. Unfortunately, it didn't work as well as I had hoped...

I hardly slept at all Friday night, between the nerves, running through all the material I had studied, not being able to breath through my nose, which meant sleeping with my mouth open (which I hate more than most other things), and my queezy stomach. I think the amount of sleep I got the night before amounted to about and hour and a half. I finally got up at 6 am on Saturday and got all ready to go. We left around 7:30, and drove to downtown Phoenix to the Hygiene clinic at Rio Salado.

The test was at 8:30 am. 55 multiple choice questions, and I had 60 minutes. I opened the test to the first page, and immediately thought "oh no, I'm done for"... Good thing I think they put the 4 hardest questions on the first page. I skipped the first page and went onto the rest of the test. I finished the entire exam with about 15 minutes to spare. I was actually the first one done, but didn't want to be the first to get up and turn it in. So I checked, and double checked, and triple checked my answers until one other girl got up to turn her test in.

I came out and waited for the results...As some of the other girls started filing out, I could hear a lot of them saying "that was so much worse than I thought it was going to be!" I hoped I wasn't just over-confident, and wondered why I thought it was overall a fair exam and was over exactly what I had studied, just not as in depth.

The results came out about 10 minutes later...The examiner brought out the stack of white envelopes with each person's results and sat them in basket. Most of us just sat there, almost too afraid to get up and look at the results. After a few seconds, I got up and found my envelope...

I had passed the written exam and could move onto the clinical portion that afternoon!

I was so relieved! I knew that the written was the more difficult part and that if I could get through that part, I would be ok.

Dan came back and picked me up, and we went to eat lunch and share the good news of my passing before we had to be back for the clinical at 2 pm.

Dan, his mom (my back-up patient in case I failed the first set of injections) and I arrived back at the clinic at about 1:45 pm. I was sitting in the waiting area filling out my paperwork, when they called my number. I scrambled to get my things together and head into the clinic to set up my operatory. I brought my good husband back into the chair and got him all ready.

*Side Note: Dan volunteered to be my patient for my anesthesia board exam. He knew it involved getting 2 shots in his mouth for no reason other than for me to be tested on it, but he agreed to do it anyway. What a wonderful man I married*

The 2 examiners came over and I gave the 2 injections as practiced. After a minute of talking, they instructed me to dismiss my patient. I knew then that I had either passed both injections and could go home, or I would have to bring my mother in law back for a 2nd attempt at the injection I failed.

I cleaned up my operatory and walked out to the waiting area to find my envelope, the same as that morning, with my results from the clinical exam...


It was such a relief to have it all over with and know that all my studying and sleepless nights over the previous couple of weeks had paid off. I was and still am so grateful to Dan for all his love and support in helping me prepare and for allowing me to use him as my patient.

I could finally relax and enjoy my Spring Break!

(A few of the girls from my class and I after a long, but successful day!)