Sunday, November 28, 2010

Count Your Many Blessings

This Thanksgiving was definitely different from last year. Last year we were home with family, but this year it was just the two of us. I would have made a nice dinner, but I was scheduled to work and we aren't allowed to request holidays off. So here we are at Cracker Barrel stuffed with turkey, stuffing, and rolls. It wasn't the most traditional way to spend the holiday, but we were together and that's the most important thing to me.

As everyone knows, thanksgiving is a time to think of all the things you have to be grateful for. Growing up I remember sitting around the table and everyone stating something they were thankful for. This year I had an experience that really opened my eyes and my heart to a whole new level of Thanksgiving....
Not only did I have to work on Thanksgiving, but I had to work the day before. The day started out just as usual but was changed abruptly when one of my patients coded. (for anyone who isn't in the health care field that means that the patient stopped breathing/heart beat stopped and needed CPR) There were people every where, yelling to do this, do that all in an effort to save a life. I was shaking and scrambling to make sure I was doing everything I could to assist in the effort. The paramedics came and continued on with what we had started all while getting them out the door to the hospital. I was trembling from head to toe and the adrenaline was ebbing slowly and I seemed to blur back into my charge nurse duties. Later on in the day, I called the hospital to get the news. The patient didn't make it. I guess the news wasn't really a shock because as we labored to bring the patient back you just knew it was already too late. I was able to finish the rest of the day, but on my way home I completely lost it. I was shocked and sobbing. It happened so fast and all of the usual questions sprang to the forefront of my thoughts "did I do enough?" "was there something I could have done differently?" "did I miss something" "had I always treated that patient kind enough and not like they were just one of many?" I will never know the answers to those questions. And after all of my thoughts settled some, I just started to count my blessings. I had a wonderful husband waiting for me at home, that made me laugh until the sadness of the day melted away. I have a home to go to, a bed to sleep in and wake up in. I woke up on Thanksgiving morning just grateful to be awake and breathing. Grateful that I had a job to go to after I woke up and clothes to put on to go to work. Grateful for the close family and friends that have done more for me than I can ever repay.
The Church hymn just kept playing over and over again in my mind "Count your many blessings name them one by one and it will surprise you what the Lord has done. Count your them one by one......
I am grateful for you....

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Norfolk Zoo Oct 2010

In October, Michelle and I went to the Norfolk Zoo. They were having a free day for military and their families and we thought it would be something to keep us busy with our hubbies away. Besides, Michelle loves anything that is free! (and who really doesn't?!) It was a small zoo, but it was nice that we were able to get so close to the animals. Here are a few of the highlights...

I don't remember the name of this bird, but it has awesome hair!! Or, uh...well, I guess it's feathers because I don't think birds have hair. Either way, it looked cool.

Not a very good pic of the Ostrich, but the zoo was really crowded and I couldn't get around to get a better shot. Every time I see an ostrich I think of the movie Swiss Family Robinson.
They had Lovebirds!! I had never seen a Lovebird before, and I couldn't get a good picture of the actual bird in the cage, so I took this picture so I could remember.

Giraffes are huge!! At least it seemed that way. We were actually really close.

The Elephants are Michelle's favorite. My favorite is the Tiger, but the Tiger exhibit is still being built. I was a little bummed about that.

The Lion taking a nap on the grass

All of the girl lions were sleeping on the rock. They must have kicked the boy lion out. :)

Had to get a picture of the Eagle. They are Alex's favorite.

That is the biggest pig I have ever seen!!!!!!

Small, but nice.

We had to get a picture of the two of us. We were trying to get the top of the building in too, but it was kinda difficult. So we just settled for this one. The weather was beautiful and afterwards we went out to the farm with my Dad and Phyllis to have dinner and sit by the fire. It was a good good as a day can be spent without our husbands, anyway.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Following after the pattern of 2010, Alex was gone for almost the whole month of October. BUT we did get to celebrate his birthday before he left. (He was out to sea on his actual birthday.) So we combined his two favorite things: motorcycles and football. I have a good friend that makes specialized cakes as a sort of hobby. She gave me a GREAT deal on a Harley Davidson Motorcycle cake. When I first asked her to do it for me, I was just excepting a small cake with maybe a Harley Davidson logo on it, but she completely blew me away! Thanks, again Katie!

I had just loaded it into my car to take it home. Alex was so surprised when he saw it! He loved it!
Lots of amazing details!
Standing next to his cake at the tail gating party. We drove down to Raleigh, North Carolina for the NCSU v Virginia Tech game and did some tail gating before the game and my Dad had the best tail gating food. Everyone walking by said "why didn't we get shrimp?!" and "where are my steaks?!" And of course, they were all talking about the awesome cake! :) If any of you are wondering, it was also delicious with white cake and strawberry filling!! YUM!

The NCSU hat was actually a birthday present from my dad, but Alex didn't want to wear it right then because we were actually rooting for VA Tech. We wanted them to do well so that it would make Boise State look better. If you don't follow college football, then that may not make sense to you, sorry.
There is my Daddy!!

Hey Phyllis!! Thanks so much for the tickets to the game!! We had a wonderful time!!

I LOVE this picture of Alex!! You can see his dimples!!! :)

Sea of Red! That stadium was packed!!!

Action on the field....
Had to get a shot of the cheerleaders! And if you look very closely, you will be able to see the Wolf and She-Wolf mascot!

Half-time show!

It was a great day and I am glad we got to celebrate his birthday. We wanted to stay the night in North Carolina, but unfortunately Alex had duty the next morning. Happy 26th Birthday, Alex!! We love you!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Washington DC Temple- Day of Service

This picture was snapped after all the work was done and we about to go home. I am actually kind of surprised that Alex smiled during the picture because he was in pain. Poor guy had been stung 3 times while we were finishing up our last project! We were laying new mulch on a nature trail behind the Temple when he was attacked. I was lucky enough to escape without a sting but the poor guy had to drive 3 and a half hours home with those stings.
They let me use power tools! hehe!

He looks a little annoyed with me because he is. He doesn't like that I have to take pictures of EVERYTHING! ;)

Those are Christmas lights and that isn't even half of what they use to decorate the Temple grounds at Christmas time. I think I can speak for everyone when I say "WOW!"

Many hands make light work! And if you notice the crates in the background, they are also all full of Christmas lights.

Once again, annoyed at my picture taking. But isn't he just so handsome?!

I don't know why, but I think this is my favorite picture.

On Saturday morning we got up somewhat early and headed out to the Washington DC Temple. It was our Stake service day so we were going to help with cleaning the Temple grounds and get it ready for the Holiday season. We worked really hard, but had a day that I don't think either of us will ever forget. We didn't even go inside, but still felt peace as we labored with our fellow members on the sacred grounds of the Temple.

Hotel Pics

Night life of the hotel.
The Lobby

The view from our room.

We stayed at the Grand Hyatt Regency at the Metro Center on Friday night. It was a beautiful hotel, but parking was TERRIBLE!!! Next time I won't mind having a hotel farther away from downtown if there isn't traffic or terrible parking. It was such a nice hotel that when we checked in I felt a little under dressed. It seemed as if all the other guests had on business suits or cocktail dresses and there I was in plaid shorts and a polo looking exhausted with a bad hair day. I guess I will just have to remember to pack my heels and my cocktail dress next we check in to a hotel like that (yeah right!)

We spent the rest of Friday afternoon relaxing in the hotel and we even ordered room service. The food was yummy and it was a nice little splurge! :)

Washington DC-Smithsonian

Here is the second half of our Friday in the Capitol. We spent it at the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History and National Museum of Man. Our plan was to see a couple of the Smithsonian's but it turns out that there was enough to see in this one that we could have stayed in there for 5 days!! These are only a handful of the pictures. Alex took most of the pictures on his iPhone since the battery on my camera died and my back up battery was also dead. (just my luck!) And I haven't uploaded the pictures that Alex has yet. So we also have pictures of the Hope Diamond, lot of minerals and stones, and more pictures of the stuff I have here.

Charles Darwin-The Father of the Evolutionary Theory
It's a shark in a jar. It doesn't look so scary like that.

I guess it's a good thing that we weren't alive at the same time as this thing was. It is very apparent that we wouldn't have had a chance!

This is a jar of Krill. Anyone who has seen Finding Nemo knows exactly what this is!

I thought this fish was very interesting. They found the fossils of this fish and thought is was extinct like the dinosaurs. But then some fisherman actually found this fish in the ocean and it still exists today. That is one old fish!!

This is the sign that is at the start of the Evolution of Man portion of the Museum. It is a thought provoking question in my opinion.
One of the statues in the History Of Man area.
Another Statue.....

It kept going up and down. I would hate to be the one responsible for keeping the number accurate.

So, you wanna hang around for lunch???

The Hippopotamus-Africa's most deadly animal (when it comes to killing humans.)

King of the Forrest!!! :) And according to Alex, I need to clarify that statement. I know that the Lion is king of the Jungle, but I was referring to the Wizard of Oz.

Tigers are my favorite!

Could you imagine hunting for deer and finding those fangs hanging out of it's mouth???

An Elephant never forgets!


My, what big teeth you have!!!!!!
We were exhausted after our tour and the visit to the museum. So we headed to the hotel to freshen up with the intentions of getting back out to see more. Yeah, that didn't happen....