Friday, October 28, 2011

another week done.

Yay for friday!!
This week was long and exhausting and I'm so glad it's over.

It was a real adjustment after having a whole week off  and getting back into the swing of things. I had such issues making myself study over fall break. I got my study guides made, but sitting down to study them was a whole nother story. So, my 2 quizzes this week went great, along with the nutrition test. I'm pretty sure I made an A on it. Not sure of the number grade yet, but I didn't miss many at all, and the ones I did miss were just random questions that the teacher never covered in class, so I just made an "educated guess" on.
I'm usually one of the 1st ones done with my test. Mainly because I DO NOT second guess myself. If I do, it's usually right the first time, and when I change my answer, it is wrong. So, I go through it once, and that's that.
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studying + coffee
My next test isn't for another 2 weeks. That's good and bad because I'll have tons of time to study, but for the stuff we covered before fall break, it will almost be a month old to me and I'll REALLY have to get it back in my head.

We're learning so much, so fast.
Just this week, we had 2 labs. We learned NG-tube placement and removal, Trachea Care (cleaning someone's tracheostomy), ostomy care - urinary, ileostomy & colostomy (which I'm sort of familiar with already because my little brother had to go through some of that in his teenage years), intake and output (specimen collection), and Enemas (this is the easiest one for me). We are also still practicing our injection skills and urinary catheter placement and removal (these two are the scariest ones for me!! and the ones I'll have to practice the most). It's easy when it's a mannequin you're practicing on, but eventually, it will be the real deal - and that's a little frightening to me still.
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my name badge :)

We have our orientation next Friday at the hospital and we have to wear 'business clothes' since we don't all have our uniforms yet. [We're waiting on our aprons from the uniform people.] I have all my stuff except for that apron. However, there are a few things I still need to get - white panties :) since our uniforms are white, you can see everything beneath that is NOT. And white pantie hose for the dress uniform [since I don't own pantie hose], and MOST IMPORTANT - an iron. :) Never really had to iron anything. Dryers usually work quite nice for me!! Since we have to look all crispy and professional, gonna have to invest in one! Just hoping I don't scorch the uniform. That could be bad. Also need to go shopping for a 'business outfit' I'm a casual gal and love my jeans and sneakers and don't really own anything businessy. It's been YEARS since I've had to wear that kind of stuff to work or anywhere.

Roger has been on call this week, and last night was the first night he was home with us. Those on-call weeks can be rough but when he's the only one working in the family, that once a month thing doesn't seem so bad.
We were going to carve the pumpkin as a family on Wednesday night, but right after Roger got the face drawn on the pumpkin, his phone rang and he was whisked away to go work on someones plumbing. So I picked up where he left off with a little help from Hailee. Her favorite part was the pumpkin goo. As much as she said it was yucky, she just kept sticking her hand in the bowl and saying, "ewww!!" such a girl. She was pretty satisfied with the finished product. And I'll admit, it wasn't bad for my first pumpkin carving experience. Yes, I'm 30 and this is the first time I've carved a pumpkin. Her squinkies even got in on the action. Then after we cleaned up, we had some hot chocolate with marshmallows on top. Roger hated to miss it, but it couldn't be avoided.

Then, I attempted to bake the seeds with a recipe I found on allrecipes.com for spiced pumpkin seeds. FAIL. The butter burned. Maybe next year.
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Whenever Hailee goes to stay with Mimi and Papa for a few days a week so I can study, she always comes home with new phrases and just seems to be saying more and more. My child is growing up before my eyes. It's amazing how fast it happens. She is one of the sweetest, behaved, loving little girls - and I'm not just saying that because I'm her mother. This is all God's incredible work. For me to even be a mother was so hard to fathom 3 years ago when I found out I was pregnant. I see so much of Roger in her actions and so much of me in her little face. She is absolutely in LOVE with her daddy and it just melts my heart to see them interact.

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She concentrates hard on her 'drawings'. I found one in one of my folders while at school the other day and almost laughed out loud. She'll draw things, then explain what they are and I love it :)

I get to sing worship with Kevin tonight at the U-Turn Service! I Love that :) We're going to have a pretty full band and 2 guitar players, so I won't be playing tonight. It was sort of a last minute thing because my LOVELY sister in law, Cynthia [aunt cyn] asked if Hailee could stay over with them tonight - and originally I wasn't going to be able to sing because I didn't have anyone to watch Hailee while we practiced. Hailee was so excited when I asked her if she wanted  to stay with her cousins. She absolutely adores them and cries when it's time to come home. I'm just glad she has cousins her age. I never did. Mine were either 10 years [and more] older, or 10 years [and more] younger. I love my sweet cousins but they weren't my age so I missed out on growing up with them.

Gonna try my hardest to sneak in some study time this weekend!! Hope everyone has a safe Halloween.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

fall is love.

Fall Break has been wonderfully refreshing! Did I mention that fall was my favorite season??

Hailee and I went with my parents to the fair this week while I was on break. Roger still had to work.
We went during lunch time because you could get in free from 12 PM - 2 PM. The minimum height to ride most of the kiddie rides was 36 inches. Hailee wasn't quite that tall - maybe around 34 or so?? I wasn't that crazy about her getting on those rides by herself anyway.
So, we rode down the big slide once, then she went down it with my mom a second time. That slide is really high up there! And coming down on that little piece of carpet - it was fast, and with every hump we went over, it seemed like we were picking up speed. I didn't know if we'd stop at the bottom! but all was well and then we walked on to the animal/petting zoo area. We fed goats, a cow, donkeys, and over in the far corner near the elephant ride was a tent with like 5 pony's chained to the walking wheel. No other kids were there to ride the pony's so Hailee had one to herself. She loved it!
All the chickens and roosters were so loud and stinky. A goose honked at hailee and scared her - she ran over to hide behind my mom!
We got corn dogs, fries, cotton candy, ice cream - then headed on out. Hopefully she'll be able to do more next year.

At The South Carolina State Fair :)
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wow. this is taking a lot of time.

I've found that fall break has been a lazy week. On one hand, it's been nice to have Hailee here all week and keep up with the housework. On the other hand, not much studying gets done with a 2 and a half year old in the house. Attention shifts to her. After her nap today, she's headed off to Mimi and Papa's so mommy can get some much needed studying done for the test and quizzes coming up. Back to school [and 5:30 AM wake up time] tomorrow.


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Hailee is now into Squinkies. Those tiny, squishy plastic animals that come in clear, plastic balls. She hasn't stopped playing with them since we've gotten home from the store. I made Fettuccine Alfredo for lunch today - home made goodness!!

I wish I had the time to learn html and play around with different things. maybe one day..
I guess when I get a nice camera [after nursing school] I will have time to do a few more things. I love taking pictures. I just know NOTHING about photography. I try. that's about it.

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And of course, Hailee is my main subject because she's just so stinkin cute ;) but I'm sure every mom thinks that about their little ones.

I started using photobucket to upload my pics to again so I can try out new and exciting things when I have the extra time on here. But sometimes, there's just so much going on that I feel like I'm going a little crazy. FOR INSTANCE....
Last night we went to church so we could have a lazy day Sunday and do our grocery shopping when we woke up. So, we wake up on our own schedule this morning, go to the store, get home, I'm in the kitchen making Fettuccine, Hailee's in her room playing with her Squinkies, and Roger.. i can't remember, he was probably playing with hailee in her room. So lunch is served and then cleaned up. 30 minutes later, I smell something cooking. "did i leave the stove on? it doesn't smell like the garlic from the alfredo" then it dawns on me... I put cube steak in the crock pot with golden mushroom soup for supper this morning and forgot about it because that's what you do with a crock pot. My point being, things just sort of slip my mind when I get a lot of things going on
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And photobucket can go so slow I get frustrated and just stop the whole program because it tends to freeze up the computer. That annoys me.

Since nursing school started, my jeans have gotten tighter. They must be shrinking.
Or maybe I'm just in denial that with this new sedentary lifestyle, I'm no longer losing weight.
Can we say "UGH??" you'd think that my clothes fitting tighter would be motivation enough to work out. It's not that I dont' like to work out, but seldom do I have the energy to WANT to work out. I really do love that too, the whole sweaty, endorphines after the fact feeling. This week has been different. I've been more aware and conscious of what I eat, and have been active more than usual. But reading/ studying always makes me so sleepy and when things get busy with tests looming on the horizon, I get a little Jessie Spanno [hahaha thanks Dawn!!] and have my own, there's no time freak out. [minus the caffeine pill addiction]
"There's no Time! There's never any time! There's no time to study..."
- Jessie in Jessie's Song
So I just sit there, studying, hoping the fat will melt itself away.
Unfortunately it's not working. I used to do Pop Pilate's all the time with Cassey Ho [www.blogilates.com you should most definitely check out her youtube channel - tons of FREE pilates uploads :) love love love cassie], but don't have time for that any more. I still try to do one every once in a while, but doing something once doesn't make a bit of difference.

I can say I'm going to cut back on my calories all day long, but that is a REALLY hard thing for me to do. I could never be anorexic. This girl gotta eat :)
I even tried the whole myfitnesspal.com [and yes, THERE'S AN APP FOR THAT] where you can have the option of sharing your 'food diary' and 'exercise diary' with your friends on the site - its another type of social network lose weight thing - but even in my food diary, I was never completely honest about everything I ate. I gotta get disciplined big time.

Roger, my husband, is a dream :) He's never said anything to me about weight or anything - maybe because I'm making a bigger deal out of it than I should - but Seriously, This is the biggest I've been in a long time.. [not counting when i was pregnant, that was just LARGE.]
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I don't really have time to cook wholesome/healthy meals while I'm in school. That just falls to convenience, but with me not moving and active as much anymore, I gotta consider EVERYTHING. I'm in my 30's now. Even studying nutrition for my last test, BMR [basal metabolic rate = the base rate your body burns energy] decreases 5% for every decade after 30. I'm there yall.

So, hope your week goes well as the last full week of October is upon us!!! Roger's already getting Hailee ready for Christmas :)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

and let the fall break begin.

We're a little more than half-way through with the semester!! [9 weeks down.. 7 more to go..]

It's been fun :) So far, I have A's in both Nutrition and Nursing 101. Hopefully I can keep them up there for the rest of the semester!! I'm all checked off on my lab skillz for the time being and pretty much caught up on all the media (DVDs and videos they require us to watch on the skillz we have to do) And let me tell you - some of those videos are gruesome!! After watching one on wound care, I had to turn off the computer because that was about all of that I could take.. I actually asked myself "are you REALLY sure you want to be a nurse???" but YES, I will do it all. whatever it takes. even if it DOES make my stomach turn..

I think once I'm in the hospital setting, working with people, THAT will take it to the next level. I'm pretty compassionate now, but [luckily!!!!!] I have lived a pretty sheltered, nice, quiet life and haven't experienced or seen a lot of the hardships people go through. One of the seniors and I were talking about how the freshmen (US) start out with only 3 clinical days this semester - and all we do is bed baths and help feed them - and how it WILL be awkward at first for both us and the patients, but she told me that with some people, you get in there and see how they've been treated and how they've been living their lives without people caring for them, and all that awkwardness goes out the window!! Instead, its like - What can I do for you? How can I do anything to help you today??

As I mentioned, Fall Break is all next week!!! From today, there are exactly 3 weeks until our clinicals start!!! Once we come back from break, school really digs in deep.
Up until now - my schedule has been:

Monday - ONLY go to school for like 2 hours if I need to practice/check off lab stuff
Tuesday - 8:00 - 12:15 classes then home for studying
Wednesday - 8:00 - 12:15 classes then home for studying
Thursday - 8:00 - 2:50 classes/lab then lab practice 3:00 - 5:00
Friday - off  no school! :)

So that's not too bad. When we go back in 2 weeks, I will be at school all day 8:00 - 6:00 some of those days, then, that 3rd week, [i don't know which day yet] I will have clinicals at the hospital - in Orangeburg - starting at 6AM!! Yes, things are getting busy. I can actually feel the anxiety just thinking about all the stuff I'm going to have to do and it's not even here yet.
But, a little anxiety is good for me. It makes me concentrate and focus more.
I know that next week is a break and I'm supposed to be TAKING a break, but with a test and 2 quizzes the week we go back, I FOR SURE will find time to study. It will be good to sleep past 5:30 AM though...

We still have a pretty full class. There are a few empty seats here and there, but for the most part, people are sticking it out. I think A LOT of people are doing really well in our classes. One of the biggest reasons for this [i think...] is because with O-C Tech, classes aren't based on a waiting list - it is a very competitive, selective process that we go through to get a seat in that class. There are a bunch of really smart people in there!! I remember one of our instructors telling us on the 1st day of school that there were over 600 other people that turned in applications and didn't get a spot in the class. I am HONORED to have been one of the 100 selected and will put forth my very best effort to do well in my classes. It's a privelege to even be able to go back to school for nursing. Without my family's support, this would be incredibly hard. [don't get me wrong, it's not easy in any way, shape or form, but it makes the biggest difference when people are behind you, rooting you on] When someone is in nursing school - it affects the whole family dynamic - everyone in the family deals with it.

There is not one person in my class that I don't like - I can get along with anyone. I haven't met EVERYONE yet, but in a class the size of this one, it's hard to talk to everyone. We help each other out and I love that about our class. Hopefully, it will continue to be that way for the next 2 years. We're going to be spending a whole lot of time together and we've already had to get pretty personal with some people (bed baths, vital signs, a whole lot of hands on lab work where we have to be each others' patients) I'm excited about learning more and spending more time with them.

GAS PRICES:
I got gas 2 days ago for $2.89 (really 2.99, but w/ my Bi-Lo bonus card, I saved 10c) passing by the very same gas station on my way home today and it was up to $3.19!!! are you kidding me? So glad I got it when I did.. maybe it will go back down before I have to get it again.

POTTY TRAINING:
We're still working on the whole potty training thing with Hailee and for the most part, she gets it, but I think sometimes she just 'forgets' and accidents happen. She's 2 and a half. It also doesn't help that she's terrified of the toilets in public places that flush automatically and about suck you into the pot whenever they do.. I feel so bad for her because she's so scared of them. I would be too if I were that little!

SINGING AND DANCING:
My child is soooooo entertaining! She sings all the time - makes up her own words, usually what she's doing at the moment - and tries to do ballet all the time! It is too cute. She has some shoes she calls her dancing shoes and whenever we play music, she wants to put them on and dance for us!! i love it! Guess we'll be enrolling her in some kind of dancing class when she gets old enough. She's still drawing too - now, her faces have arms and legs too!!


We went to the pumpkin patch with cynthia, brian and the girls last weekend and had a great time! We didn't get any pumpkins because it's still a little early and I didn't want them rotting on the porch. Ed and Elizabeth were supposed to come too, but Ed was a little under the weather - definitely next time. We went through the corn maze - wouldn't have done it if we didn't have a good navigator :) it probably took us about 45 minutes. It should have been about 3 miles, but I'm pretty sure we took a short cut somewhere. I just saw where some people got lost in a corn maze up north (?) and had to call 911... no thank you!!

 cousins
 hayride
 <3
 corn family
elephant hat from walmart hailee loves!!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

papers & pens are everywhere!

week 8 of nursing school starts Monday!

so, yeah, on my birthday, I have to be at school all. day. long. Leaving my house at 6:30am and probably not getting home until 6:30pm! (ofcourse i'll be stopping at Firehouse Subs and getting my free birthday sub :) favorite sub place EVER!)
Monday is going to be rough. We have lab 5, which entails: Surgical asepsis, sterile dressing technique, urinary catheterization, injection techniques - preparing and administering injections, and injection sites. It's a biggie!! We will have a quiz on everything that the lab is on - BEFORE WE EVEN START THE LAB, at 8:00 Monday morning.
I've already re-organized all of my notebooks because after only 3 unit tests, I've had to move all my info over to a 3 inch binder. FOR REAL, there is so much stuff we get to learn!

My class-mates are great! I think we lost a few more after the last test. Someone told me we lost 6 - there's atleast 2 that I know for sure aren't there any more. I've laughed so much with them, and shared so much anxiety all ready in the past 7 weeks! It's kinda cool knowing that we're all in this together because this is one of the hardest things I've done in my life so far. It will be worth it in the end and I'm standing there in my white dress, with my white nursing cap, and my white nursing cloggish shoes, with a pin that says I'm an RN!!
This is the class of 2012 (our seniors this year) we will wear these beautiful uniforms once our clinicals start in November! I cannot wait :) actually i'm pretty scared about clinicals right now..



I took a step back after studying for my nursing test last week and looked at my living room and the destructive force studying has on it and had to laugh. I've claimed my 'space' :)


No wonder roger can't stand it that it takes me until the weekend to get a thorough cleaning done on the house. I'm sorry, cleaning isn't my top priority when I have tests and quizzes to study for! I just finished the mountain of laundry that was spilling over onto my bathroom floor, and there's still a sink-full/ dishwasher full of dishes that need to be put away.

Hailee seems to be growing more and talking more every day! She stayed with my parents Monday, Tues and Wed this past week. I called and talked to her on the phone and we actually had a conversation and I understood everything she said! unreal. My child is growing up. Looking back at her baby pictures, she's changed so much and is growing up to be a beautiful, sweet girl. She even started drinking out of a regular cup without spilling it all over herself.

Getting back to last week - we had our check off on vital signs: counting pulse for 60 sec, counting respirations for 60 sec, temperature and checking someone's blood pressure. I was fine with everything except the blood pressure! I have been checking roger's blood pressure every day, a few times day, and was still FREAKING OUT and nervous because I'm still a little unsure of hearing that bottom numer (diastolic pressure). So, I prayed about it over and over. Thursday morning comes, and it is the day of my checkoff. We had our first hour of nursing class lecture and then as we were supposed to start on our second lecture, one of the instructors told us we could either go home or stay until our lab because the instructor giving the lecture was sick. THANK YOU JESUS! not because the instructor was sick, but because we had about 3 hours to practice taking our vitals before check off appointments. :)  I was taking everyone's blood pressure I could get my hands on! And it all paid off because I passed my check-off within 2pts of my blood pressure reading [i got 136/86 for my patient and my instructor got 136/84] not too bad.. By the end of that check off, I think my partner measured my blood pressure at 140/96. Yes, I was VERY on edge ;)

I have my 3rd nutrition test next week and it too covers a lot of information.. water, minerals, trace minerals, weight gain/loss, life cycle nutrition, and I'm currently working on all those study guides. I live for the study guides just so I can go over them again and again and again. I learn by repitition and writing things over and over again.

I got a 90/A on my last nursing test! and an 87/B on my dosage calculations quiz. i hate math so much. I'm having to pull information from way back in high school. basic stuff that i should remember, but ever since calculators, i've gotten lazy. I count on my fingers, in my head, all over the paper.. I can memorize stuff all day long, but when it comes to math, i love a calculator ;) we can't use calculators until our summer semester.

Today feels like fall. That makes me so happy! The windows have been open all day, we've been playing outside almost all day, and the breeze is just blowing through the house. Fall is my favorite season.

 I let Hailee pick out her own bubble bath and toothbrushes today when we went to the store. She's in the bath now and calling me to come wash her. Better go make sure she doesn't have bubbles all over the bathroom - that wouldn't be uncommon. Have a great week :)
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