Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Hello, Again.

Oh my.  Long time, no blog.  Since July?  Where has the time gone?

So much has been happening and I've been sort of busy.  In August I started my final semester of nursing school.  In less than 3 short weeks, I will be graduating. (Well, at least I hope to be graduating....). Holy heck.  This has been the fastest 12 weeks of my life.  I have loved the content of this semester (cardiac, respiratory, critical care)...but boy...the exams have kicked my booty.  Today was our last day of clinicals.  My last day as a student nurse.  And it came with so much mixed emotions.  So ready to be DONE.  But so NOT ready to be done.  It's been quite the ride and I am so proud of what I have accomplished.  I continue to learn so much more about myself and about other people, as well.  I have loved this latest chapter of my life.

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving.  It's really my favorite holiday.  I have the best memories of Thanksgivings at home in Texas with lots of family around.  Our Thanksgivings here are much smaller in size.  I will miss being home again this year.  My girls ask every year if we will be able to go back--they love it, too.  So, today, I came home from the hospital and began cooking.  I can't wait for tomorrow to hang out, cook, watch football, and eat! 

For the last couple of years, each November, I have "adopted" a daily post for what I am grateful.  I have been remiss this year.  I've had some hiccups in the road, that sometimes keep me from seeing the bigger picture.  But, they are just little bumps, and we get up and move on.  Here are just a few things (among many) for which I am grateful:

That my family is healthy and happy. 

That we somehow managed for me to continue my education without working and not landing in the poorhouse. 

For new friendships I have made along this journey of nursing school. 

For a loving, supportive and hardworking husband.

That both my girls enjoy being home on a Saturday night or Sunday morning and loving watching football games on TV with us. 

That even though I can't be home for Thanksgiving, I have some amazing, traditional recipes that I love to make, so that I can pass on my family traditions. I learned from the best.  For sure. 
That my mom and sister (maybe sisters) will be visiting in just a couple of weeks to see me graduate!

So, tomorrow will be filled with football, eating, family and friends and then you can find me locked up somewhere studying for another exam all weekend long. 

Tonight, the menorah was lit and the tree went up (don't judge).   I am a happy camper. 

Happy, Happy Thanksgiving everyone. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

And We're Back

I last left off on our east coast adventures while we were in New York, but if you followed my facebook posts, you already know the rest. 

It was a great trip.  I must say, I did a great job coordinating everything.  Everything went off without a hitch, with just a couple of minor how I accidentally booked a smoking room in Charleston, and they had no other rooms to offer us.  It was really, really yucky.  Really. 

And how I didn't book things when I first found great fares/rates.  I am not sure what I was waiting for.  For instance, for months, FOR MONTHS, I found Amtrak fares that were pretty reasonable going from New York to Washington.  Why didn't I book this?  I mean, we were definitely going.  Nope, in typical Lori fashion (I'm a little non-committal sometimes), I put it off, and lo and behold the fare had more than doubled.  :(  (Shh...don't tell Craig).

Anyway, I think we planned pretty well and we covered a lot of ground.  We didn't spend more than 3 days in any one place...just enough time to not feel like we were ready to leave.  If we could change anything, it would have been another day in Charleston and another day in Hilton Head.  And we would probably nix Disney.  But, for sure on the 18th day, we were ready to come home. 

18 days, 24/7 we were together.  Every meal, same hotel room or condo.  Shockingly, there was very minimal bickering between anybody.  And there was only one or two near-divorce incidents.  Not bad, right?  I was also a little worried that all the constant/frequent schlepping of luggage would be a big pain in the ass, but it wasn't at all!  We are easy...

We have all talked and none of us have a "favorite" of the trip.  Too hard to have one favorite.  We all found something we loved at every stop. 

So, we returned very late Friday night.  We encountered a few challenges after we returned, but hoping by tomorrow we are feeling more settled and back in order around here.  But, boy is it good to be home.  I really missed my bed.  A lot. 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

New York State of Mind

This may be short. I am blogging on my iPhone and I've had a couple of glasses of wine....

We are in New York. We've had this trip planned now for about 9 months. After toying with the idea of wanting to go to Florida to see my dad, who I haven't seen in about 4 years at least and my new step-mom (still sounds weird to say that), and wanting to take a trip to South Carolina to see friends who
moved there...we decided that since 2013 was to be such a big year for us...we would add a few more fun things while we were on the east coast.

So here we are. In New York. My second time here and I am IN. LOVE (again...i fell in love the first time, too). I love the vibe. I love the attitude. I love the pace. I love the excitement.  I love the melting pot. Currently, i am infatuated with our hotel. Our room...spacious, modern, well-appointed, and beds exceptional. Last night we met my sister out (she lives here) for a drink and dinner. Started at a little French place called Felix and i became infatuated with our French bartender. Yes, i am married, but i am still allowed to say that.

People aren't rude here, as some think. Interestingly, everyone has been more than accommodating and friendly. I love these people.

Today's activities included:
Harbor tour of Liberty Island, etc.
City bus tour (partially in the rain...good adventure).
9/11 Memorial
Lots of people watching.
Sunset and a bottle of wine.
Great day.

I love you New York. <3

Monday, May 27, 2013

I Smell Summer

I admit, I took this tagline from another blog I read earlier today.  But, it's true.  I smell summer.

I got my first taste of summer this weekend and I was a happy camper.

Rylee was invited to a birthday party this weekend that included an overnight at La Quinta Resort.  Lucky me, was able to tag along for part of it.  And so it was pool time with friends, enjoying our fabulous holiday weekend weather... (hot, but not-too-hot.)  Tasty beverages.  Snacks.  Good music.  People watching.  At my most favorite place.  Perfect.

Hello Summer.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

This Ride Called Life

I'm a little bit of a mess.  The last few months, and more recently have been a whirlwind.  A merry-go-round, rollercoaster. 

Since January, we have experienced a mix of joy and sorrow.  There was the excitement of starting a new semester of nursing school, that came with countless papers, quizzes and exams.  Three 5-week rotations.  It was rough, but we made it!!  We experienced a variety of excitement and joy and pride of witnessing our children's accomplishments--performances, grades, college acceptances....Our kids make us so proud! 

Thrown into this mix, there was much sorrow, as well.  We learned the news of a special person having stage 4 cancer.  Two local high school seniors who tragically lost their lives within weeks of each other.  We have watched the devastation and heartbreak caused by the tornado in Oklahoma, that hit much too close to our dear friends and family. 

Just weeks ago, we suddenly lost Craig's dad.  Sad for the loss of Mel, but more heartbreaking for me, is that it was Craig who found his dad in his home.  This will forever be ingrained in his memory. 

A week after his dad's passing, Craig learned of a new position that he will be taking.  Yes, it is both exciting and scary at the same time. 

As I write this, I learned the news that this special man I wrote about previously, passed away this morning.  His battle is over.   If you could see the love between he and his family...we should all be so lucky.  So blessed.  It's like none I have ever seen.  I am grateful that I was able to write about him and that he knew how I felt about him and how he touched my life.  I am grateful that I attended his celebration of his life while he was alive and that he could see the outpouring of love and recognition for him from so many people.  It was beautiful.  A special man and he was surrounded by so much love...because he gave so much, as well.  If everyone takes a little bit of how Jackie viewed life, we would all be much happier people. 

Tonight, Chandler graduates from high school.  And just like the last few weeks, I know I will be overcome with emotion.  So proud of this girl.  She is as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside. She's special, this girl. 

Tomorrow, I have the privilege of being able to volunteer for the pinning ceremony for the nursing graduates.  This pinning ceremony always gets doubt, the tears will be flowing again.

And over the course of the next two weeks, Rylee begins her end-of-year festivities, as she prepares to promote from 8th grade.  OMG, I am going to have a freshman.  My emotional rollercoaster continues!! 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013


In the early hours of Sunday morning, Shadow Hills High School lost a student, a classmate, a friend.  A family lost a son, a brother.  The last few days have been difficult...trying to accept why and how this happened.  It has been heartbreaking to read the Twitter and Facebook posts about how people are feeling and reacting to Victor's passing.  Clearly loved by and touched so many.  I didn't know him, but seeing his picture, I recognize him from the school. 

A few kids, including my own, posted a comment about hoping this was a wake-up call for us.  And although some did not want to hear this, it should truly be a wake up call.  We are not invincible.  So many kids think they are.  Victor's last tweet before the accident--"We drunk driving"-- was bone chilling.  And if this doesn't hit everyone like a ton of bricks, I don't know what will. 

I had a friend in high school who lost a sister to a drunk driver.  And an ex-boyfriend of mine whom I dated for two years was killed in a motorcycle accident--he was drunk and was driving.  He had two prior DUIs. 

As I told my girls, we can only control what we do---our own actions, our own choices.  We can't control what other people do.  We need to go out and make smart decisions and choices everyday in this life.  We are responsible for this.  What I pray for each and every day is that my loved ones do not fall victim to someone else's poor judgment. 

I stressed to them...I would much rather get a call at 2:00 am from one of them asking me to come pick them up than get a call at 4:00 am from the police or the hospital. 

Oddly, just last week, Chandler hugged me tight before I left the house to take Rylee to cheer.  She said she worried all the time that something would happen to one of us when we left the house and she would never see us again.  We had a conversation about that...why it is so important to live each day being loving and giving and doing good things.  But, we can't worry ourselves about what we can't control. 

I pray for ALL the families involved.  Everyone's lives are forever changed by this tragedy. 

Thursday, February 28, 2013


"I wish my life was always as easy as my Facebook posts make it sound.."

This was from a friend's FB wall several weeks ago.  It made me laugh--because I can relate.  I don't try to portray a perfect or easy life on FB....but, I do truly like to focus on the positive.  The reality is, I have bad days.  Days where I am overwhelmed and don't know what to do first.  And then nothing gets done.  Days where I am sad.  Days where I worry.  About where I am going to be a year from now.  About a lot of things.  Days when I am exhausted and have no patience.   Days when I cry.  Days when I want to run away.   

Sometimes we get caught up in reading other people's posts and think or believe how great or easy his/her life is.  Maybe some of us want others to believe this.  The grass is not always greener.  I think most of us know this, but sometimes we forget.  All of us have stuff going on.  We are all much more alike than we know.

Life is hard.  Marriage.  Kids....Life.  Even for those of us who make it a point to choose happiness or joy...there are still hard days!  My joy factor, though...yeah, I try to make it a point to make sure it outweighs the hard.

My life...not always perfect, not always easy.  Neither is his.  Or hers. 

Thursday, January 17, 2013

My Own Little Tribute for Jackie

In September 1988, one month fresh out of college, I came out here to the desert to interview for a job.  Actually, I had three interviews lined up.  My aunt was living out here and with her connections, helped set up these interviews.  Here I was, a new college graduate, going for my first official job interview.  I had a fresh new haircut (my hairdresser back in Texas told me I needed a "mature" cut, you know, now that I was a college graduate and all...).  And I had my interview outfit picked out.  Looking back, I can't quite remember if I wore the same outfit to all three interviews, but I think I did.  It was drilled into my head back then, what you were supposed to dress like for job interviews.  So, I had this cute black and white check skirt, with a white chiffon-like top, with matching little jacket.  Black pumps.  Sort of suit-like.  Professional, ya know?

So, I had one interview at Mission Hills Country Club, for a job in the tennis shop.  Another interview at the La Quinta Hotel Gift Shop.  And my third and final interview was at the La Quinta Hotel Tennis Club, for the position of "tennis hostess."  My degree was in Clothing and Textiles, so my goal was to do the merchandising for the shop, but for now, this was the job that was open.

As I am walking through the tennis club area, over the saltillo pavers, in my pumps and in my very professional attire, carrying a leather pad that held my resume, and in awe of the beauty of this place, I think to myself, "This is dumb...why am I wearing this?  But what else do I wear for my first interviews out of college?  I'm supposed to look this way, right??"  I was very, very uncomfortable.

Anyway, I walk into the tennis pro shop and ask for the gentleman with whom I have my interview with...the Director of Tennis, Jackie Cooper. 

Jackie comes out of the office, we shake hands, make our introductions and he takes me over the restaurant so we can chat.  Me, in my suit.  And he in his white, short Fila shorts--complete tennis attire.  We walk in silence over to the restaurant.  I'm thinking he thinks I look like an idiot.

So, we chat for a bit.  I give him my resume.  I can't even remember what we talk about.  I'm nervous.  He's 40-ish, I think.  Tan.  Blue eyes.  Good looking.  Jackie is as nice as he could be to me.  By the time I leave town, I am offered all three jobs, but I accept the one at the tennis club at La Quinta.  A month later, I made the move to California.

I never put that suit on again.  For the next ten years, I sported the cutest tennis gear around.  I didn't really play, but at least I looked like I could. 

Working at La Quinta Hotel Tennis Club was one of the best experiences of my life.  Everyone I worked with was great.  There was Jackie.  Karen, who ran the shop and was Jackie's right arm.  Francine, who did the buying for the shop.  Jim and Julian, and Fred and Mike--teaching pros.  Me, who arranged matches. And Sonia and Mona...our retail girls who worked on weekends.  Good people.  We were a great team and had fun.  There was never a dull moment around that tennis shop.

Jackie was great to work for.  He was a great tennis player.  So fun to watch play.  He had a great sense of humor.  He was funny.  He was easy going.  Laid back.  He enjoyed life.  He never took anything too seriously.  He was charming.  And always made sure everyone who came to play at this club was happy.  He had a knack for making everything work out for everyone.  If someone came in and wanted to play and no court was available, he figured out a way to get them on.  If someone wanted a match and no one was around, he helped make it happen.  He took care of people.  Everyone loved Jackie.

He gave great advice. 

One day, I must have been complaining about something to him.  He looked at me and said, "Lori, you need to stop being a troubleshooter."  Oh.  My.  Gosh.  I can still see him to this day...sitting in the back office, in his chair, back against the wall, feet up on the desk, saying that to me. (If you know Jackie, you know and remember this vision).  And everytime I start to find a problem with something, I can still hear those words. 

Another day, I was driving him from the golf club back to the tennis club.  There were people walking in the middle of the street....and me, being annoyed, said, "Geez, why are they walking in the middle of the street?" Jackie tells me (reminds me)..."Hey...they're on vacation...they're at La Quinta..they should be able to walk in the middle of the street."  Thank you Jackie for that reminder.  To just relax.  I loved your outlook on life.

Back in the day, La Quinta Hotel was the premiere place to come for tennis (golf, too, for that matter).  I know it still is, but back then, it was owned and operated by Landmark Land.  Ah, the good 'ole Landmark days.  It was run much differently back then than it is now.  Over the years, many things have changed.  It was and still remains as my very favorite place, ever.  It's beautiful and peaceful.  Nestled in the Santa Rosa mountains.  Palm trees.  Blue skies.  Beautiful flowers everywhere.  We had 30 tennis courts, 6 of which were grass and 3 clay. There were several weeks a year where all 30 courts would be booked solid for hours at a time. 

A good portion of the hotel guests and members at La Quinta were very influential people.  Many successful, wealthy businessmen (and women), TV personalities, actors, professional athletes, coaches, movie producers, etc.  And Jackie knew most all of these people.  Many he was friends with.  But, even being surrounded by all of this, Jackie was one of the most grounded, down to earth people.  Not arrogant in any way.  He was dating and shortly married Shelley.  Blonde, beautiful, sweet, healthy Shelley.  She was a physical therapist.  She, too, was so very down to earth.  And Jackie had three daughters:  Carrie, Laura and Jamie.  All three sweet, down to earth, naturally beautiful, good girls.

After almost four years, I left La Quinta for another job.  I saw Jackie a few times maybe here and there around town, after I left there.  The resort was sold and he ultimately left La Quinta, as well, as did the rest of our staff.    We became facebook friends a year or two ago...he's commented on a few items of mine, which always makes me smile.

It's been a very, very long time since I  have seen Jackie. 

Several days ago, I heard the news that he has stage 4 cancer.  I was so shocked and saddened to hear this news.  I know nothing really about any of it, other than this, and that next Sunday a tribute and celebration of his life will be held at La Quinta. 

So, Jackie, if you are reading this, I want you to know how much I have been thinking of you.  To just let you know that I thank you for hiring me and giving me the amazing experience and opportunity that will go unmatched in the years that I worked for you at La Quinta.  These thoughts I write here are just a fraction of the memories I have of you and La Quinta.  I am sure you have no idea how many little things made an impact on me.  It is evident you have touched so many people and how many people love you.  You are a one-of-a-kind, special man.

Sending you much love, healing thoughts and look forward to seeing you and your family next Sunday. 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Nice Gesture. Not.

Today, Chandler, Rylee, Ashton (Rylee's friend) and I were at Target.   As we were just about finishing checking out (I had just finished paying), Rylee picked up a lip gloss out of our basket and said, "Mom, I don't think he charged us for this."  We had 3 Baby Lips lip balms in the basket.  The checker says he believes he charged us and pulls up the receipt.  I quickly look at the receipt and just as soon as I say, "No, I don't see a third one on there, " the woman next in line behind me grabs the lip balm and says, "PUT THIS ON MY BILL...I'M IN A RUSH!!"  She GRABS the lip balm and scans the item herself!  I was so dumbfounded.. Is this really happening?  I said, "Oh, I'm so sorry if we are holding you up, that's not necessary for you to pay for it."  She continued to complain about her not having time for us to figure out if we paid for a lip balm or not.  She was so nasty about it. I reached into my purse and pulled out the $3 it cost and handed it to her and apologized for holding her up.  She shoved the money back at me, saying she didn't want my money.  It went back and forth one other time and I could see it turning into one of those whose paying for dinner scenes and as she shoved the money back at me a second time, I decided to take it and leave.  Fine, bitch. 

It was the strangest encounter I have ever had.  I am positive we were making a scene.  I think she thought she was doing something nice, as well as making her own life easier.  I've been in a position like that before, you get frustrated by being behind someone in line that's taking up more time than you'd like, but geez...calm the f___ down.  At least act like you're doing a good deed.  I wanted to say, "This does NOT make you a nice (er) person."  She could have handled it so differently...and come out smelling like a rose.  And avoided making so many of us there feel so awfully uncomfortable. 

I hope everyone there thought she was as big of an ass as I thought she was. 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Closer to Home

I read this on a friend's facebook wall today:

"One of the hardest things about becoming adults, is watching our parents grow older, (in some instances) suffer, and leave this earth, when we simply feel, we're just not ready to be without our mamas and daddies."

She took the words right out of my head.  Except I don't know that we are ever ready to be without our mamas or daddies. 

My heart has been heavy lately.  Friends of mine losing a mom, a dad, a brother.  Two in the last two weeks.  Another a month ago.  Several others in the last two years.  And others close to me with health scares.  Growing up and through the years, people dying or getting sick always happened to someone else...Not so much anymore.  It's hitting much closer to home now.   Friends I grew up with now losing their parents.  As our circle of friends grows and as we grow older ourselves, the inevitable happens.  Inevitably it becomes our reality, too. 

Whether you know it's coming because of an illness or if it is sudden, I can't even imagine being ready or prepared. 

Sending big hugs to my friends and loved ones tonight. 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Under the Weather

Haven't been feeling great the last few days.  Not sleeping well.  Burning sore throat.  Minor earache and body aches and now coughing for the last 24 hours.  No fever but feeling just bad enough to not want to do anything.  I suppose if I'm going to be sick, might as well be now.  Holidays are over.  Projects mostly done.  Kids back to school.  So, I'm not feeling so guilty about doing pretty much nothing.  Hoping I get it all out of my system now and that no one else gets it.  And that it stays away...

In my extra free time these last few days, I have been perusing Pinterest and finding and reading up on some new blogs.   I'm glad to know there are so many others that blog about their everyday life or whatever journey they are on.  And I truly love reading them.  Sometimes I wonder if people really care what I write.  But, I have 1775 page views, so I guess some people are tuning in.  :)

I got homemade chicken soup simmering away, finally.  And it smells heavenly. After a few beautiful 70-ish degree days, we have another "cold front" coming in right now.  And that's fine by me.  As much winter-like weather as we can get, I will take.

Soup will taste good and feel good tonight.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Projects and Other Stuff

I am sure I am like most people and want to start the new year out right...being nice and organized and cleaned out.  Over the last few weeks, I have tackled a few projects:

In December we had back-to-back garage sales that were pretty much flops for us.  On the bright side, we took every single item that we didn't sell to the rescue mission.  This made way for clearing out lots in our garage! 

Clean out fridge and freezer:  Check.

Clean out pantry:  Check.

Clean out laundry room:  Check. 

Today it was a LOT of laundry. 

I've said this before, but I wish I was as organized as I think I am.  What it boils down to, is that I hate clutter.  I'm fairly good at getting rid of the clutter, just not organizing what's left.

So, next on the closet.  I think I am getting close to that happening.  Really soon. 

Actually, I make it a habit to clean out.  About twice a year I do it more "big time."  August is the back-to-school cleanout and then there's this New Year cleanout.  Feels good.  Lightens the stress.  It's good chi or something like that, right?

I haven't made public any resolutions I have made.  If you really want to know, you can archive my post from last year.  I didn't really make good on any of them.  So...each new day is a new day to start over and just keep trying to do my best.  To make healthier choices.  To be a better person.  Done with putting too much pressure on myself. 

And our little "good things that happened to us box"....only one thing has been written down in 6 days.  We need to pay more attention to our days! 

Kids are back to school tomorrow and what a great break it's been.  Just taking each day as it comes.  Three Sundays in a row, a few friends and I have gathered at this area where the kids can ride their Penny boards and bikes and we can sit and have snacks and drinks and enjoy the beautiful day.  It's been awesome. 

I'm about ready for more of a routine again.  But I am sure when those alarms go off at 6:00 am tomorrow that will be another story....

Happy Back to School Day tomorrow! 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A New Year

It's hard to believe that another year has come and gone.  I just re-read a post that I wrote on New Year's last year and it seems like it was just yesterday. 

2012 has been a really good year.  Many great things have happened, along with some challenges. 

I began my first year of nursing school in January.  There is no one word that can describe this journey of going back to school.  Exciting.  Scary.  Amazing.  Daunting.  I am continually motivated and encouraged by nurses who are working who relay stories of feeling the same way my fellow classmates and I feel about what we are going through.  I have made some wonderful new friendships along the way.  New sisters and brothers with whom we all share this bond.  I've met people who have come and gone from my life, too, during this process, and I'm not going to lie:  It's made me sad to lose some friends with whom I felt had a connection.  Doesn't matter how old we get, still hurts. 

Along the road of 2012, Chandler broke her nose and Craig rolled a golf cart and had a nasty injury to his lower leg.  Chandler had surgery and Craig was darn lucky, to say the least.

We had a fun cheer season, traveling with super fun parents, who know how to have a great time and make the best of every situation!

This year, I was fortunate to be able to visit with old friends.  Whether it was catching up for 30 minutes at a cheer competition, or for a few hours with margaritas, poolside.  Or for 10 minutes at a tailgate orlunch or spending a weekend together.  I am grateful for true friendships and for those who make the time and go out of their way to make the connection happen.  And not to mention the priceless moments with good girlfriends here...laughing til we cry.  Yes, I've had a broken heart or two this year, but these moments make up for them ten-fold. 

We took a wonderful trip to Lake Tahoe in July.  It was a perfectly wonderful vacation, complete with good family time, horseback riding and lots of time on the lake.  And seeing old friends again.
We made a few day trips to the beach and soaked up every bit of being in the sun and sand.

And how can I forget going to Dallas Cowboys Training Camp??  Woot woot!

Rylee turned 13 and Chandler turned 18.  Chandler registered and voted in her first election.  And got her first job.  It was all very exciting. 

I was awarded over $6000 in scholarships for nursing school, which took me by complete surprise.  What a blessing that was for us....

In November, Chandler and I traveled to Norman for a campus visit of OU.  An awesome trip all around. 

Sure, we had our not so shining moments, too.  There has been stress and feelings of not being so much at peace with various things.  But, overall, it's been a very positive year for our family...and we must all recognize the positive, because it is too easy to let the other fester and take over.

I read my new year's resolutions from last year and I regret to say that I wasn't so successful at keeping most of them.  So, this year, I keep trying.  And for the new year, something new for us to do:  I have a little box with a notepad in it.  Each time something good or positive comes along our way, we will write it down and put it in the box.  At the end of the year, we will sit and read about them together.  I am so looking forward to that.  A great way to focus on the positive through the year.

I might add that 2013 is a big year for us:

Rylee will finish middle school.  Chandler will graduate from high school.  Craig turns the big 5-0.  We will celebrate our 20th anniversary and I will wrap up the year when I graduate from nursing school!!  Wow! 

Can hardly wait!