Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Fun, sun, TEXAS!

This past week we decided to take a spontaneous trip to Texas!  It all came together really fast.  Two weeks ago we took the offer from Reid's Aunt Mary and Uncle Jeff to stay at their newly purchased lake house, with them.  Reid's boss agreed to give him 4 days off.  Little did we realize that Memorial Day was Monday, so we ended up being able to stay in Texas from Tuesday until yesterday (Monday).  It was incredibly relaxing and fun.  It was a week without television, computers, and schedules.  We were on lake time. 
Part of the joy of the lake was seeing Jack enjoy his vacation to the fullest.  He did and said SO many hilarious things.  I'll do my best to recap.
Tuesday (the day after I PASSED my NCLEX, nurse licensing exam --woohoo!), we loaded up the car and left for Texas at 0400.  We stopped in Oklahoma City, at the Zoo for a few hours.  It was almost the halfway point and a great opportunity to walk around and get some exercise.  13.5 hours in a car is a LONG time!  I love zoos and I think Jack is inheriting that from me.  He loved running around and seeing all the animals.  Reid thinks zoos are all the same and he fears that I'm going to make him go to every zoo in the US.  (Maybe not all, but several)  :).  On the contrary, I saw several animals I have never seen at a zoo!  We saw Harpy Eagles and anteaters, brown bears, and HUGE buzzards.  Jack loved pointing out those animals because Diego, the NickJr character, saved the Harpy Eagle and an anteater.  It was great to see him regurgitate that information.  He was telling me all about what they eat and where they live. 
Jack at the entrance to the Oklahoma City Zoo:
 Jack walked right up to this window and tried to hug the bear:
 After the zoo, we stopped for a picnic lunch and headed out south again.  The zoo was also incredibly useful in the fact that it knocked Jack out for a long nap! 
We arrived in Canyon Lake, TX around 9pm Tuesday evening.  We were happy to be out of the car and got acclimated to the lake house.  The next morning, the adventures began.  Jack took like a fish to the water.  He was swimming early mornings with Aunt Mary, almost every day.  He spent as much time in the water as we could.  By the end of the week he was swimming from the floating island to the shore, from person to person, over to the jump rock, and every where he could.  He got to ride on a tube with his 2nd cousin Neal behind the jet ski, he was on the sea-doo (or "skied" as Jack says) with his dad, road on a boat with the neighbors, and jumped off the jump rock multiple times.  He had so much fun throwing rocks in the water and finding seashells.  He would find 2 shells together and he said, "Look mom, 2 shells together...it's a clam!"  Then he promptly broke them apart with a big rock.  And throwing rocks apparently never gets boring for a 3 year old.  Every morning he requested to "go throw rocks" or "swim with Aunt Mary".  :)
Jack loves Texas and Texas-shaped chips:
The first time we went down to the shore, Jack was so excited to get in and he just stripped off his clothes and went in, in his undies.  He also learned to farmer pee while we were there.  All week he thought it was the coolest thing to pee into the lake from the shore.  He would scream "Ah, I have to go pee" and then run to the shore and whip it out and stick his little belly out and watch himself with pride at the perfect stream.  While I don't condone public displays of private parts, this was hilarious.  You couldn't help but laugh.  He was so excited and proud.  Once he was done, he just tucked it back in and went back to the water!
My little fishy- climbing rocks, finding shells:
 This was the first time he went swimming.  He learned to "launch" off the shore and swim out to Aunt Mary:
By the end of the week he was swimming on his own (with life jacket of course).  Here he is swimming with Neal, over to the jump rock.  He learned from Aunt Mary to say, "Move out of my way water, move out of my way!"  One time he yelled, "Momma look at me, I'm like Nemo!"  I loved watching his little swimmer traits come out.  :)
 Here is a view from Mary and Jeff's lake house deck.  Just beautiful:
One day we spent the morning at the local Children's Museum.  It was really cool.  This is another thing I loved as a child and I might drag Reid to several over the course of our kids lives.  :)  This one had a spaceship, grocery store, campout, cave, ranch, bank, art room, human body/hospital, etc.  It was so much fun.  Here is Jack dressed up in a spacesuit.  He recently learned about planets and loved playing at the control desk of the spaceship:
 Jack doing a little grocery shopping:
 A family picture before we left for home.  I loved being able to experience this with my boys. 
This trip was much deserved after this long year of school-work and splitting my time between my husband, baby, and school.  It was a great way to start our summer off and lots of fun making so many memories.  On the way home Jack couldn't stop asking "When are we going back to Texas??"  So, here's hoping for another trip soon!
Until next time...

Monday, May 14, 2012

a weekend full of "-ations"

The past 4 days have been FULL of celebrations!  Last night, laying in my bed and reflecting, I had an overwhelming feeling of gratitude to the Lord, my family, and amazing friends.
Thursday May 11th was Reid and my 4th wedding anniversary.  Reid's cousin Daniel came over and kept Jack so that we could go to a movie.  We chose the Avengers in 3-D Imax and were not disappointed.  I had never been to a 3-D movie before.  It was fun to experience it with Reid and I am happy we both have an affinity for superheroes.  :) 
My cute hubby and I with our 3-D glasses on:
Friday, happened to be my 28th birthday!  That morning I was able to take Jack to school, since classes were done for me.  His school was celebrating Mother's Day early, with "Muffins for Mom".  Jack picked out a chocolate chocolate chip muffin (a man after my own heart) and OJ to split.  They took our picture and we got to eat breakfast together.  It was a great start to my day. 
Jack and I at his school:
I spent the morning relaxing and doing a little random shopping.  My parents arrived in time for a late lunch.  We grabbed Jack from school and then enjoyed some 54th Street.  It was so nice to get to eat with them and catch up, one-on-one. 
My birthday dessert:
That night happened to be my Pinning ceremony from Nursing School.  It was a huge day.  Reid's Aunt Jayne pinned me during the ceremony.  She is a William Jewell College nursing alum, as well.  It was a fabulous end to a crazy year.  I am still kind of in shock that it's all already over.  It went so fast!  After pinning was over, we headed to Conrad's Alehouse for a party.  What better excuse than Pinning and my birthday, to have a party!  I was so surprised and happy to have time with all of my friends and family that showed up.  I spent the night catching up with old friends, dancing with new friends, and just having a really great time.  It was the PERFECT ending to my special day.   
My happy family after pinning:
 Aunt Jayne and me at my birthday/graduation party:
Saturday morning we got up and packed to head to Hastings.  2 side stories that happened between the time we packed for Hastings and actually arrived there.
1st side story-- on the way out of town we stopped at Uniforms PRN because I knew they were having customer appreciation day where you could draw for 10-20% off your purchase.  There were 2 chances to win 50% off.  I knew that I'd need to buy new scrubs and I need a new stethoscope, so I told Reid, I might as well go look!  Well, go figure, I pulled the 50% coupon!!  I was SO excited!  I am NOT lucky at all...but apparently somebody knew I needed all new scrubs and stethoscope.  I got 3 scrub tops and 3 scrub bottoms AND my stethoscope for 1/2 price!  (Great way to start my day...shopping and deals!)
2nd side story-- While we were driving to Hastings, my brother's girlfriend Angela became a DOCTOR.  Ok, it really took several years of hard work, but she had her graduation ceremony that afternoon.  We would've loved to have been there, had it not been during Jack's nap time.  But, now she is officially Dr. Angela Schleeper.  We are SO proud of Ang!!  (picture to come...someday).
We spent Saturday afternoon/evening, just catching up with my siblings.  My parents and Ben made it back to town late that night.  It was up early for Baccalaureate Mass on Sunday morning.  It doesn't seem possible that Timothy is old enough to graduate.  Let alone the kids in his class that I used to babysit!  The service was great.  We had a wonderful Mother's Day brunch at the country club in between Mass and Graduation ceremony.  So, not only was it 3 graduations, a birthday, and an anniversary...it was ALSO Mother's Day!!  Crazy busy weekend, but so wonderful to spend with our family.  Tim's graduation was fast...which is kind of shocking.  His class is very impressive and he is quite the young man.  I'm so blessed to have 6 amazing siblings, each talented in their owns ways.  I'm awed at their individual relationships with the Lord, and they all inspire me to be a better person. 
Here is Timothy and my parents.  #5 of 7 kids graduated! 
 Timothy and his favorite sisters:
So, if you haven't kept up...that was Anniversary, birthday, pinning/graduation, graduation, Mother's Day, and another graduation.  :)  Phew---I could probably sleep for a week! 
Until next time...

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

I'm DONE!....almost

This morning I took my LAST FINAL for Nursing school and I feel SO accomplished!  I cannot believe that I've survived this year.  I can't believe that my family has survived this year.  It's been a crazy, fast, emotional, rewarding, sad, happy, fun, and incredibly enlightening.  I know now, more than before that nursing is the field I'm meant to be in.  I am confident in saying that I'm going to be a damn good nurse.  I cannot wait for my future. 
Speaking of (and if you haven't already read it on Facebook), I'll be starting June 4th at Truman Medical Center in Labor & Delivery!! I'm going to have the best of both pediatrics and adults.  I am so scared about the lack of L&D knowledge I have, however, I know that I will get a great Graduate Nurse education from TMC.  I also found comfort in the fact that I had Jack at TMC and I know there are some amazing nurses and doctors up there. 
Tomorrow we have a day of activities required by the nursing department that we have to complete and then Friday night is pinning.  It's going to be bittersweet.  I've made some great new friends and we've been seeing each other all day, every day for the last 12 months.  It will be strange to get back to "normalcy".  I've got a million things to do though so I know I'll have plenty of distractions. 
To all of you who read this, THANK YOU for supporting me in any way that you have over this past year.  It's been an amazing journey and I have some wonderful, understanding family and friends. 
Until next time...