Sunday, December 23, 2007

There's Always Hope

Two very good things that make my heart happy.....

Welcoming my new niece to the world - a healthy and beautiful baby girl!

And this, a poem from one of last year's Big City Mountaineers participants - a teen from the East Oakland Youth Development Center in California:

"Bright lights, quiet nights, taking pictures of beautiful sights. I could not believe we were there, at the top inhaling the clean air. Comfort zones were stretched, we will be and are the best. Don't tell us we can't cause we know we can. Believe in yourself and you can be like us."

I know it doesn't really sound like much but it makes me feel really good about helping this organization reach out to kids and provide them with experiences that make them write things like this.

Have a Merry Christmas and be happy because even though it doesn't seem like it most of the time, this world is an incredible place of possibilities and hope.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


This probably shouldn't make me giddy.... but for some reason it does. Should I be nervous??

Sunday, December 09, 2007

I Think I'm in Love

I know I've been absent for the last few weeks but I have a good excuse. Really I do. You see, I've just spent the last three weeks discovering why I put myself through the hell of quitting my stable, well-paying job last year to go back to school. I wrapped up my first round of clinicals this past Wednesday and for the first time in a looooong time, I feel as though I'm finally doing something worthwhile of the time I spend doing it. In my three weeks at the hospital, I worked nine 12-hour shifts full of anything from routine med treatments to ventilator patients to traumas and codes. And it was my job to help them all. Now it's time to hang up my stethoscope for a while and get back into the classroom but I feel so much more motivated now to continue on since I know what's waiting for me when I graduate next year.

It hasn't been all work and no play, though. Steve and I managed a quick overnight at Nordhouse Dunes (just north of Ludington) before the snow started flying. It was perfect backpacking weather and we had a great time - big bonfire and rice and beans for dinner and a quick game of frisbee on the beach to warm up before our morning hike back to the trailhead. Nothing restores me like hanging out with my husband and Lake Michigan.

I know I gave a hint about a new adventure on the horizon and now it's official - I'm headed to New Hampshire in February to attempt a winter ascent of Mt. Washington. It's a 6,288 ft. peak that is well known for its ferocious weather - especially in the winter. I will be climbing with my two Rainier girls Jessica and Nancy as well as a host of others I'll meet at the trailhead. It's not necessarily a guided climb but Nancy's uncle is essentially the group leader and I'm very excited and nervous at the same time. It's a one day climb so it will be a quick trip but no doubt a fun one. The training starts today and I have a lot of ground to make up since I pretty much quit all athletic activity the moment I got offthe plane after Rainier.....

I'm also super excited to go to California for the first time in January. Steve and I decided to forego buying each other Christmas presents this year and buy some plane tickets to San Francisco instead. We're headed out to meet up with our dear friends Jen and Max (and their new kitty Puck) who moved to Sacramento this past July. This will also be a quick trip but will be a wonderful reunion and a nice break from the snow. I'll be sure to post pictures because I have a feeling it will be gorgeous out there.

So that's about it. I'm on break now until January 14th and plan on working like mad to recover from the past three weeks of working without pay. But at least now I know it will all be worth it, right? I'll end with a picture of my new favorite place on the planet - our warm and cozy home :)