2013 in review

Given that this will only be my fourth blog post for the whole year, it is probably obvious that 2013 has been a busy year for me!

Professionally, this year has definitely been the best of my life. In the past 12 months, I have more than found my footing at med school. With the help and dedication of some amazing friends, we have successfully opened and operated a student-run free clinic since September. This project was conceived a little over a year ago, and the clinic has now been open and thriving for over three months!

Two med students practicing sutures on pigs' feet

Practicing before we treat any real patients!

This free clinic has opened so many doors for me – I have the amazing opportunity to work with so many students and faculty on this project. I really feel like I am doing important, meaningful work, and that I am respected by my peers and mentors for it. It is a wonderful feeling.

The second year of med school has also been so much more fun and interesting than first year. My classes are so much cooler and there is so much less “busywork”! My grades are much better this year than last year as well, which doesn’t hurt.

2014 is going to be another big year for me. The whole first half will be spend studying for “the boards”, the big USMLE Step 1 exam that I will take in June. Then, Daniel and I plan to move down to Chicago where I will start the clinical part of med school, my third year clerkships. I’m also working on a big project this spring with the goal of expanding the types of services we’re able to offer at the clinic.

But it hasn’t all been work, work, work! I have had a wonderful time with friends, family, and of course my two guys Daniel and Walter! Here is a little recap of 2013 in pictures:

In March, our friends Kaitlin and Chris came to visit, and we met up with Pamela and Javier in Chicago for a bite.

Grabbing pizza in Chicago, March 2013

Grabbing pizza in Chicago, March 2013

Then, in June, we traveled back home to Washington for a couple of weeks. We stayed at Kaitlin and Chris’s apartment in Seattle and explored our favorite city like we were tourists:

Me and Daniel on the Bainbridge ferry

Gotta wear that lifejacket!

Chris and Kaitlin at Tilth

Then we drove to Spokane for my sister’s wedding, which was lovely:

Megan and Shaun

Me and Daniel at my sister's wedding

Couples selfie

Then we settled down for a chill, relaxing summer at home in Waukegan:

We hosted a big 4th of July barbecue with with pulled pork and all the trimmings:
Backyard BBQ

We daytripped down to Chicago:

At Intelligentsia

Pamela visited for a few days later in July and we just hung out and bought matching “friend” watches (the brown one on the left):

Me and Pamela

Clocks on clocks on clocks

In August, we bought bikes and started commuting on them! I did the 13-mile round trip commute on my bike quite a few times until the weather got too cold, and I plan to start again in the spring.

New bike

In September, my mom visited, and she even went to school with Daniel and me each for a day! This is us at a school picnic where she was a big hit with all my friends:

Mom and me

Before we knew it, the holidays rolled around! We had a big Thanksgiving this year, with 14 people at our house, including Pam and Javier, plus a bunch of people from med school. Daniel outdid himself again (well, I helped a little,) and Pamela generously provided flowers for me to arrange and play with (one of my favorite things to do, but I always feel guilty about how much flowers cost). Everyone had a great time and left with full bellies.

Thanksgiving with friends

Cranberry-blueberry pie

Thanksgiving flowers

Thanksgiving with friends

Which brings us to Christmas. This was our very first Christmas away from our families. Daniel and I kept it very homey and cozy and just focused on being with each other.

Christmas cookies

Christmas decorations

Christmas decorations

Christmas Day dessert

Enjoying snow and sunshine

Wearing my Christmas scarf and pin

Modeling his new Christmas gifts

We still have a few more days until we go back to school, so we’re getting ready to tackle 2014 with our usual energy. As you might have heard on Facebook already, Daniel and I will be eating vegetarian for the month of January, as an experiment more than anything.

Here’s hoping that you had a great 2013 and that your 2014 is looking even better!

First visit to the Bean

My bedroom

Bedroom

As much as I love the black paint in our bedroom (FYI, this is the gross color of the room before I painted), I haven’t always loved the room itself. For a long time, it wasn’t finished and it just wasn’t how I wanted it to be.

About two years ago, Daniel and I decided to build a big headboard as a “Do It Together” activity. But we ran into so many problems that we all but abandoned the project. Turns out, button tufting is a huge pain in the ass and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone. I’ve come to realize that tufting is an upholstery project that you should always just take to a professional. It would have cost us less grief AND less money just to have someone else do it.

Fish scales

BUT, since we had already sunk the money into the foam, fabric, and button-covering kits, PLUS we already paid to have the movers bring it from Seattle with our furniture, we decided we finally needed to make this work. I’m about to start a really busy year of school, after which we will be moving into Chicago. The thought of shame-moving a giant unfinished craft project for a second time was finally enough to overcome our apathy. It took about a full week of dedicated work and a few minor arguments, but we finally got this thing finished and hung!

Bedroom

Another challenge in the bedroom was the bed. We bought a king-size platform bed from Overstock when we moved to Capitol Hill (Seattle) two years ago. It wasn’t the best quality, but it was what we could afford and it was really important to us to have a king bed. It worked just fine in our old apartment, but when we moved here, the uneven, slippery hardwood floors became a problem. The little legs that hold up the support beam that runs down the center of the bed kept falling down. Quite honestly, it usually occurred during nighttime activities, which was a double bummer.

Bedroom

For the past few months we’ve resorted to propping up the beam with piles of cookbooks, but we needed a permanent solution. So on Tuesday Daniel and I went to Home Depot, bought a 4×4 post, and had a guy cut it down into 8 squat, stable little legs. We used wood glue and screws to attach the legs to the support beam and now the bed is so stable. Hooray!

Sometime in the next year or so, we need to replace our junky old Ikea mattress, but for now, I am feeling pretty good about the bedroom. Good enough to finally take some photos.

Bedroom

Keep in mind this is the ONLY time this room has ever been this clean.

And here are a few panorama shots since it’s hard to get perspective when you’re shooting in a small room (click to embiggen):

Bedroom panorama

Bedroom panorama

Cozy, right?

Happy birthday little buddy!

Our Walter turns 4 today!

Happy birthday Walter!

Technically, we don’t know when his exact birthday is, but today is the second anniversary of the day we brought him home. It may seem silly, but he is the light of our lives. What a funny, snuggly, sweet little dog.

Wally celebrated with some stew beef and brown rice. And he even let me put the hat on him!

When we adopted him, the shelter said Walter was two years old. Which means that as of today(ish), he has spent more of his life with us in his “forever home” than he ever spent in his past life. And while we don’t know any details of his past, I will say that whoever gave him up must have had to be some sort of monster, because he is just the best dog in the world.

Wally would like to remind you that if you want to honor him for his birthday, the greatest gift you can give is to consider adopting a shelter dog when you get your next pet. I think this little sweetheart is more than enough evidence that shelter dogs are as good as, nay better than, dogs that have been bred or sold for profit.

Just look at him, proud member of the Clean Plate Club!

Clean plate club

Happy birthday Walter!

We love you so much Walter!

Birthday snuggles

8 months in one post

I have not blogged in forever! Why have I not blogged for 8 months? Because I am a fuck. Thankfully, I have been taking pictures. So quickly, here are some of the things that have happened in the past year that I never wrote about:

Exactly one year ago in late July 2012 Daniel, Walter and I road-tripped across the country from Seattle, Washington to Waukegan, Illinois. These photos were taken at Devil’s Tower in Wyoming:

Daniel and Walter at Devil's Tower, WY

Me and Walter at Devil's Tower, WY

Once we arrived in Illinois, we had a ton of free time until our stuff arrived, so we painted our bedroom black. Benjamin Moore Onyx, to be precise. It is a lovely, sooty black and I will definitely be using it again in future apartments. Our landlord just about had a heart attack when he saw it.

Paint is Black Onyx by Benjamin Moore

On August 6th, 2012, we celebrated Walter’s 3rd birthday with a cute hat, some poached chicken, and homemade froyo. Our stuff still hadn’t come yet.

Happy 3rd birthday, Walter!

A few days later, I had my white coat ceremony. If you’ve never heard of it, the white coat ceremony is a med school rite of passage where you receive the short white coat of a medical student and then you take the Hippocratic Oath. It was pretty cute, but Daniel couldn’t come, so I felt very alone. You can see from this awkward picture that I didn’t know anyone yet and was feeling very shy. A year later though, I’m friends with almost everyone in that photo!

White coat ceremony

(Fun fact: when we got our coats, we each had to stand up and say one thing that we are “bringing to medicine”. 10 points if you can guess what I promised to bring!)

We finally got settled into our new apartment and I took a few crappy photos:

Living room

Living room

Office

Looks pretty much the same as our last apartment, doesn’t it? Even the gray paint in the main room is almost the same shade – Benjamin Moore Stone Harbor.

And then school started and it was all about the studying (which is also ostensibly my excuse for not blogging).

Studying hard

It wasn’t all work and no play, though – my bestie Pamela and her boyfriend Javier visited in September for a few days and we toured the Few Distillery in Evanston. If you’ve never toured a bourbon distillery before, you have to try it! Everything smalls like warm toasty vanilla.

Me and Pamela at Few Spirits distillery

In October, we visited a pumpkin patch with new friends Svetlana and Jenny (med students like me).

Svetlana takes the lead!

Jenny racing

For Halloween, Wally was a lobster again, (but this year I think he wants to be a bumblebee):

Walter the lobster Walter the lobster

Walter the lobster

One big thing that happened this past year was us hosting our very first Thanksgiving. 2012 was the first year of our whole lives where we didn’t have the time or the money to travel back to Spokane for Thanksgiving. We hosted 8 people (also med students who couldn’t travel home) and everything went great. I’ll save the photos of that for now, because I want to do a whole separate post on that.

2012 was our second year with a real Christmas tree, and this time we decided to go all the way out to the farm and cut it ourselves. We all got bundled up:

All bundled up

And chose our tree.

Christmas tree hunting

Christmas tree acquired!

It looked beautiful up and decorated, but it didn’t smell as fragrant as 2011’s tree. I don’t remember for sure, but I think this was a Canaan fir. I think this year we will try for a better-smelling variety, even if the needles aren’t as soft.

O Tannenbaum

In December 2012 Daniel and I also celebrated our 10th dating anniversary! We celebrated on the 13th with flowers and champagne:

Anniversary champagne

December 13th, 2012

Followed by a romantic dinner and a night at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago.

Anniversary

Later in January, we got dressed up and went into the city again for Dance for Diabetes, a charity event put on by the podiatry program at my university. Everyone looked fabulous and had a great time:

Dance 4 Diabetes

After the new year, I held a very special Galentine’s Day luncheon for all my favorite med school ladies. I want to do a separate post on that, but it involved pretty decorations:

Working on a fun tassel garland!

After February, school stuff really started to take over and apparently I didn’t take any pictures. Our amazing friends Chris and Kaitlin flew all the way out from Seattle to visit in March, but I can’t find a single photo! (To be fair, we did spend the whole weekend in our pajamas, drinking wine and playing Settlers of Catan, so I’m not sure how great those photos would have been).

But this summer has been great and I have plenty of stuff from the past few months to share with you soon!

Goodbye 2012!

Well, despite the fact that 2012 was the worst year ever for this blog, it was a pretty good year for me in real life!

I started off 2012 with my best friends Kaitlin and Pam at a raging party at Miss K’s house (no photos of that, thankfully). Daniel and I also rescued a stray dog last New Year’s Eve, and reunited him with his owners on New Year’s Day.

Here is a picture of me and my bestie Kaitlin at our last dinner party in Seattle:

Kaitlin and me

In Spring 2012, I traveled to several medical school interviews, and on May 1, I was accepted to Rosalind Franklin University! Just three months later, Daniel, Walter and I packed up all our belongings and road-tripped to our new home in Waukegan, Illinois. We were incredibly sad to leave our adopted hometown of Seattle, and our best friends Kaitlin and Chris. But after spending 3 years in a dead-end job, I was so happy to finally be going to medical school.

Me and my bestie Pamela when I was in Illinois to find and apartment:

Pamela and me

For the past 4 months, I have been pretty much living the dream, being a full-time med student, while Daniel has also been living his dream of being an elementary school general music teacher. We have a lovely home (which I know I owe everyone pictures of, sorry!) and lots of great new friends. Our neighbors are wonderful and they adore Walter.

Daniel and I hosted our first-ever Thanksgiving in our home this year. We had 10 people over for a fantastic feast. And 2 weeks ago, Daniel and I went down to Chicago for the weekend to celebrate 10 years together as a couple:

Anniversary

2012 has been a great year. A year with lots of change, some difficult, but most happy. Honestly, I don’t know if 2013 can top it, but I am looking forward to the future. Yes, even the surprises!

Walter

Love,
Sarah

new blog theme

So I decided to change the look and theme of the blog a little – hope you like it!

I also had to change the blog title, obviously, since we’re moving away from Seattle. This is like when I was 13 and I signed up for a Yahoo! email address as folara13. I guess I thought I would never age? Or maybe I wanted to memorialize myself at age 13 or something. Either way, I apparently didn’t learn my lesson, because when I started this blog six years ago (!) I never imagined living anywhere but Seattle.

pictures of the new apartment

Here are some pictures of our new place. Of course I realized the second we drove away that these photos are terrible and make no sense. Plus I forgot to take pictures of some really important things, like the entire balcony/porch.

Here is a little floor plan drawing of the unit. First thing as soon as we move in, I am going to measure every room and draw up an actual scale floor plan. Then I’m going to cut out tiny little couches and tables and beds and go to town arranging them on my little paper grid. Because I am cool like that.

Floor plan

Anyway, you can see the apartment has kind of an interesting layout – the third bedroom is tucked in the back without direct access to the hallway. You have to either walk through the second bedroom or the bathroom to get out. I’m not sure why it was laid out that way, but I can tell you that every single apartment we looked at had some kind of weird layout quirk…

The apartment is very clean and freshly renovated with new paint and refinished floors, which is nice. The ceilings and baseboards are painted an OK white semi-gloss, but the walls are just a gross yellowish off-off-white. We’re planning to repaint just about everything.

Ok, here is the living room. The window faces east. I think we’ll put the couch on the right against the wall and the shelving unit on the left wall. The whole room, along with the dining room, is going to be painted a nice soft gray, just a touch warmer than the color in our current apartment. I hate vertical blinds, so we will probably pull them permanently off to the side and cover the whole apparatus with curtains. I’m thinking floor-to-ceiling curtains on a hospital track.

Living room

And here is the dining room – it is open to the living room and the window faces west onto the balcony. We’ll obviously put our dining table here, as well as the china hutch. The air conditioner will live here in the summer too. I also want to get rugs for the dining and/or living rooms. And the ceiling fan is hideous. The part of me that has lived in Seattle for the past 7 years wants to chuck it, but I know we’ll rely on it to cool the apartment down. Maybe we can replace it with an inexpensive but more attractive model. Ceiling fans aren’t that expensive, right?

Dining room

This is the kitchen (with a gas stove for Daniel!) We are going to get a stainless steel kitchen work table from the restaurant supply store to go against the opposite wall.

Kitchen

Daniel is so excited to have a bigger kitchen with lots of counter space and cabinets. The upper cupboards are are original 1960s aluminum cabinets. The whole kitchen is that ugly yellowish color but we will probably just live with it for now. What should we put in that weird little corner area (besides the weird grass-filled cornucopia, which is staying, obvs)?

Kitchen

The master bedroom has windows facing east and south and a big double closet. I like that all of the floors, woodwork, and doors are original to the unit. You can’t see them, but the sliding closet doors are the original wood color, which I like so much more than if they had been painted or (horrors) replaced with cheap mirrored closet doors. This place is definitely mid-century.

Master bedroom

We plan to paint the bedroom something really dark – either black or deep deep blue. Both the room and Waukegan get so much light that we’re not worried about it seeming like a cave in there. It’s going to look great.

Here is the second bedroom, which will become my office. It also faces south and has the smallest closet.

Second bedroom - my office

I’m planning to paint it some shade of gray and then fill it with white bookshelves and a huge white lacquered desk. The closet will become my craft supply storage area. Daniel can have, like, a laptop charging area and a bookshelf. But the rest of the room is all mine.

Second bedroom - my office

Second bedroom/office into hallway

I’m really excited to have a space all to myself that’s big enough for me to craft and do school work in. I figure, the reason we’re in Waukegan is for me to go to school, so let’s really go all out here and dedicate a room to my studies. In the past, our shared office spaces have just gotten too cramped and cluttered for either of us to work. Plus, Daniel will get a desk at work.

Ok, so next is the bathroom. Compared to our last two apartments, this bathroom is huge. There’s, like, 2 feet of space in between the tub and the sink, and the sink and the toilet. And they didn’t have to cut out a piece of the door to fit around the toilet bowl! I’ve always been proud of Daniel’s and my ability to successfully share tiny bathrooms, but needless to say, this is going to be a nice upgrade.

Bathroom

So the tub is blue and the walls are tiled to half-height in white with a brown border:

Bathroom

In order to pull it all together I bought this shower curtain, which is gorgeous in person.

Shower curtain

We’re also going to paint the upper portion of the walls a bright jewel tone green – like a kelly or emerald.

And finally, here is the third bedroom, destined to be the guest room. I don’t know exactly what we’re going to do in here yet – it will probably make a pretty good landing pad for random crap for a little while. But we are buying my friend Kaitlin’s bed and hauling it all the way to Chicago, so this room will definitely become a guest room eventually. It just might take a little time.

Third bedroom - guest room

a week in Chicagoland

Well, I’m done with work! I quit my job last week and now I have a few days to relax while Daniel finishes up his school year, and my mom and sister visit Seattle. After that, we’ll have just over a week to pack, clean, and say goodbye to Seattle.

Two weeks ago I flew to Chicago to look for an apartment. My awesome friend Pamela volunteered to drive me around all week.

As soon as my flight got in, we headed to Logan Square for a late night bite at the Longman and Eagle; we had some sort of corn-on-corn churro thing for dessert that was delicious.

at the Longman & Eagle

After noms, we headed up to the North Chicago/Waukegan area to spend the next 5 days apartment hunting. We put a ton of miles on the car, driving from suburb to suburb (more like ex-urb really) looking for a place to rent. The whole Chicagoland area is so different from Seattle; it’s going to take some getting used to. We also took the opportunity to sample the food and culture in the North Chicagoland area.

First we stopped at RFUMS for bumper stickers and t-shirts:

RFUMS swag

We also discovered that apparently it is ok to park on the grass when all the parking spots are taken:

Parking

Then we took in some nightlife in the nearby town of Libertyville:

Pamela

Then we spent a  whole bunch of time just driving around the city of Waukegan, Illinois, looking for FOR RENT signs. This is all old Saunders stomping-grounds, since Pamela’s dad grew up in Waukegan.

Pamela approved of Joplin’s Java, the only independent coffee shop in Waukegan (for the love of dog, please correct me if I am wrong here and Waukegan is full of secret local coffee shops – this is the only one we could find!) The coffee shop is really cute and it overlooks a beautiful ravine.

Joplin's Java

Anyway, so after lots of running around, a few disappointments, and some tears, I found an apartment! It is is Waukegan, in a safe, but working class area. It’s less than 2 miles from the elementary school where Daniel will be teaching, and it’s about 7 miles from RFUMS. We’re excited to have such short commutes in an area where it seems everyone is willing to commute miles and miles to work every day. We really don’t want to have to get a second car, at least right away. Also, Daniel is really happy about our close proximity to lots of taco shops and Mexican groceries.

Anyway, the apartment is a 3-bedroom, 1 bath with hardwood floors and a nice big porch/balcony area. I will have one whole bedroom to myself for an office, and we are also planning a guestroom for when family and friends come to visit. It will be so nice to have more space to spread out and set up a proper office. One of the biggest perks of living in the suburbs – you can get a 1400 square foot apartment for less than you were paying for your 525 square foot place in Capitol Hill!

Thanks for a great week Pam!

Pamela and me

Awesome shelving unit

(This is an old post I started writing back in November 2011. Even though it is not very timely, I thought you all might still want to read it!)

When we started making plans for decorating our current apartment, Daniel asked for some websites to read for inspiration. You see, my blog feed reader basically consists of equal parts design blogs and feminist/womanist/progressive blogs (with a sprinkling of critters sites, of course), and I’m also on Pinterest regularly. Daniel mostly reads about fashion and food, so while he isn’t design-illiterate, he literally just didn’t know where to look for ideas and inspiration. The first place I sent him to was The Brick House. Morgan’s blog has been a major inspiration for all the projects we’re attempting in the new place. Her aesthetic is spot-on and she is a major deal-hound.

So I promised a long time ago I would show you how we built the shelving unit in our living room. I have to be honest and admit that we ripped off the whole concept of the shelf from The Brick House. When I showed Daniel a picture of her unit and told him I wanted to copy it, he was immediately on board.

Shelving unit from The Brick House

shelving unit

Our version

Despite the fact that Morgan had pretty much laid the whole thing out for us, this was still a beast and we made so many (expensive!) mistakes. But it is just awesome, don’t you think? Here is how we did it:

First, we planned some changes to the inspiration unit to better fit our needs. We added an extra short shelf on the right to accommodate all our books, and then to keep the whole thing balanced-looking, we shifted the lowest shelf to the left side.

The whole shelving unit is built with steel plumbing/gas pipes and pine boards from Home Depot. It is only attached to the wall at the top with 4 screws in each flange, but since the poles are all steel and completely inflexible, the unit is really solid and stable.

After we had our favorite design sketched out, we planned how many pieces of each size pipe we would need. Here is our final* shopping list:

Assorted lengths of 3/4″ black gas pipe (you can totally use cheaper 1/2″ pipe for a slimmer look)

  • 20 – 6″ pipe (for shelf supports)
  • 4 – 8″ pipe (for the top pipes that go to the wall)
  • 11 – 12″ pipe
  • 2 – 18″ pipe
  • 2 – ~32″ pipe (custom cut & threaded to the same length as 18″+tee+12″)
  • 1 – ~43″ pipe (custom cut & threaded to the same length as 12″+tee+12″+tee+12″)

(You can buy one big 10′ pipe and have the guy at Home Depot to cut and thread it into our three custom-length pieces).

Fittings for 3/4″ gas pipe:

  • 20 – elbow joints
  • 16 – T-joints
  • 8 – base flanges

Wood:

  • 2 – 1″x12″x88″ pine boards
  • 3 – 1″x12″x48″ pine boards

(We bought three 1″x12″x8′ boards and had Home Depot cut them to the lengths we needed).

    Other stuff:

  • black spray paint
  • drill and spade bit (I think we ended up with a 1 1/4″ size bit)
  • wood stain – we used Minwax wood conditioner and stain in Special Walnut 224.

After a trip to Home Depot, we came home with a ton of greasy, dirty black gas pipes from the plumbing section. We decided to use black gas pipes instead of the shiny steel water pipes because gas pipes are a little cheaper and we knew we were going to paint them anyway.

Daniel laboriously peeled the sticker off each pipe and washed them in the bathtub with lots of soap. Then he spray painted them black. (Pro tip: assemble the pipes or tape off the ends before painting or you will muck up the threads).

building the shelving unit

Meanwhile, I sanded and stained the shelf boards and drilled holes for the pipes to go through. Each shelf needs 1 hole for each upright that goes through it. The holes go along the front edge of the shelf.

Once all the components were prepped (and we caught and fixed all our mistakes!) we laid everything out and got to building:

building the shelving unit

In the photo above you can see how all the components come together. The elbow joints sit at the back of each horizontal shelf support. Each shelf rests on top of the flat ends of the elbows and the top of the T-fittings. Four of the flanges are used as flat bases at the bottom of each upright (they’re not drilled into the floor) and the other 4 flanges sit flush against the wall and are screwed in.

There were a few tense moments before we were sure everything would lock in place, since there’s not a lot of wiggle room. But the assembly part came together so much quicker than all the tedious prep – it only took about 10 minutes total to build.

building the shelving unit

building the shelving unit

Ta-da! Our giant, awesome, custom shelving unit. It takes up the whole wall and it only cost a couple hundred dollars to make, including the cost of our errors. Speaking of mistakes…

* Here are all the things we messed up at first, and their approximate cost to fix. Homemade may be better, but it is only cheaper if you don’t fuck up.

  • Bought 3/4″ black gas pipe instead of 1/2″ like we planned to (and like the Brick House unit). I have no idea how that happened. Cost difference: +$60
  • Bought 8″ pipes for shelf supports, drilled the holes in the wood shelves, and then I realized I drilled the holes as if for 6″ supports. Since we had already washed and painted all the 8″ pipe, we couldn’t return it. Cost: $50 and an extra trip to Home Depot
  • Bought the wrong size spade bit to drill the holes in the boards. Cost: $5 and an extra trip to Home Depot
  • Realized we forgot to buy a board for one of the shelves we had planned. Cost: An extra trip to Home Depot, plus the cost of the board we were already planning to buy.

Yes, that is 4 extra trips to Home Depot over the course of a week. Later that week, we blew a fuse in the kitchen and had to run to HD again before we could make dinner.

back from hiatus

Well, I stopped blogging for a good long while, and right in the middle of NaBloPoMo. I kind of got overwhelmed with med school applications, plus feeling like I was bad at blogging. I was not in a super-awesome place last November. I mean, I was fine, but I felt like I was in such a rut.

Well, just about everything has changed in the last six months. Most importantly, I got into medical school and we’re moving to Chicago in August!

Daniel and I are so excited, even though it means we’ll be moving away from Seattle and our beloved Northwest. And after reading back over the blog archives, I realize there are still so many things I wanted to share about our apartment that I never wrote about, and even a bunch of pictures I never even uploaded to Flickr. I have some blog drafts that I wrote and never posted. So if you’ll excuse things being a little out of date, I think I’ll try to get some of those up soon. Maybe I can ease back into blogging that way.

I feel so much more confident now than I did 6 months ago. By Christmas 2011 I knew I needed to start making some changes in my life, because I was certain I was going to be rejected from med schools again. Daniel and I even bought season tickets for the Seattle Opera 2012-2012 season. I got a few interviews, but after being rejected from almost everywhere, I felt completely demoralized. In February I enrolled in an EMT training program because I was sure I wouldn’t get into med school and I hated my current job so much. I found a mentor doctor to shadow and really started to feel like I was finally making some positive changes in my life. Then on May 1, 2012, I found out I had been accepted to the Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University. Bam – everything changed.

Now, a month later, after all the the congratulations and booking a mover and putting in my notice at work, I think I’m ready to blog again.

The thing is, I love going back and reading through the blog archive. But at the time I am trying to write for the blog, everything feels so clumsy and stupid and boring. It can be so hard – with everything I’ve ever written, really – just to get it out in the first place. It’s the main reason I end up taking such long unproductive breaks from blogging. So I am going to try to be more confident in my writing.

Here’s to the next 8 weeks in Seattle, and after that, the next 4 years in Chicago!

Valentines ranunculus

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New curtains for the dining room.

New curtains for the dining room.

...and after the haircut

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