Finals Week

Hello lovely people of the world!  It has been a little bit since my last post.  We have gotten into the comprehensive meat of the subject matter and I have been studying an enormous amount of time.

It seems like yesterday that this semester started.  This is the first time a semester has flown by for me…..maybe it’s because I really enjoy the subject matter.  I went to the school library yesterday to study with my classmates and as I was leaving, I found myself feeling accomplished.  I smiled to no one but myself as I walked across the parking lot to my car with a spring in my step.  This semester is almost over.  One lecture final and one lab final to go.  Then I get a few weeks off to enjoy life and people until it all starts over again…..and probably a bit more hectic since I’m taking microbiology.

I would like to go ahead and take the entrance exam for the nursing program that starts next Fall.  I need to order the study book and set up an appt to take the exam.  I am super nervous and yet excited at the same time.  There is no guarantee I will get selected especially since I haven’t finished all of my sciences before test time.  I have an awesome GPA and I have finished 1 science…..by the time the Fall program starts, I will have finished all my sciences….but not before the entrance exam…and we are ranked by our GPA, our sciences completed, and our grade on the entrance exam.

I think I will go ahead and take it anyway, hope that my GP will put me into the higher ranking, and pray I am selected into the program.

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving!  I send you all a Happy Thanksgiving wish!  Enjoy the day and count your blessings.  May you eat lots of food and take a very long nap!

Blessings to you all.

Picture Frames DIY

I have pretty much taught myself how to make some pretty cool picture frames.  I was hoping they would be a source of extra income while in school, but I haven’t had time to go that route just yet.  Instead, I have made several for my house to hang on my walls.  I plan on making some as Christmas gifts since I was able to get free wood from a neighbor and then my BIL cut it all to size for me.

What you need:

  • Wood (literally, whatever kind you want.  I’ve used plywood, wooden planks)
  • Paint (You can buy awesome sample sizes of ANY color for $2.98 at Lowes)
  • Paintbrush
  • Stencils
  • a make up sponge (this is the best tool ever for stenciling)
  • Plexiglass

Start with a piece of wood and cut it to size.  I cut this to a 10″ x 10″IMG_7763

Paint a base coat on each piece of wood.  Be sure to paint the sides.

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Let base coat dry completely.  I use a fan to make the paint dry faster.

Then pick out a stencil to use for the design on the frame.  I buy mine at Michael’s

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Line up the stencil and use the makeup sponge to blot the paint evenly and thinly onto the frame.  I use a piece of painters tape to hold the stencil in place.

Once you have painted the stencil, set it aside to dry.  You can easily do several others while you wait for the paint to dry.

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Once the paint is dry, paint the stencil onto the remainder of the the frame.

I used a 10×10 piece of wood and printed a 5×5 picture.  I got a large sheet of plexi glass at lowes and had them cut it for me.

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I made 3 light ones and 2 dark ones.  I hung them on my wall in alternating colors.  I love it!  Quick, easy and fun!!

Here are a few more I have done:

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Go for Broke

I feel like I am sometimes living a bitter sweet, double edged dream.  I love college…learning all the amazing things about the human body and having so many new experiences.  I seriously thought since I was 40 when I returned to college, I wouldn’t be able to learn many new things and I’d do good with a C.  I have learned that I’m actually an exceptional student and I make A’s.  Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine I’d be a smart college student.

But let me tell you….It certainly does not come naturally.  I study almost every waking hour that I’m not in class.  I quit my job in December and I haven’t looked back.  This entire year has been college focused and I’ve loved every minute of it.  After being in the work force for 20+ years….man, it’s so nice to be away from grumpy people and drama, drama, drama.

The downside?  I’m broke.  Normally by October 1, I have all my Christmas presents bought and wrapped.  But this year, I have only purchased 3 things.  I am dreading presents this year.  We barely have enough income to pay our bills, buy gas, and purchase groceries.  There is nothing left at the end of the month.  Nada.  I just want to skip presents for the next 3 years and then start gift giving once I’m finally working again.  This whole “not having money” thing is for the birds.

I was able to get some scrap wood from some neighbors and have made some reclaimed wood picture frames.  I will give some of those for Christmas gifts.  Other than that, I will probably make some candy and cookies to hand out as gifts.  I think I can find some little gift boxes on sale at Hobby Lobby.

Being broke really does help bring the focus back to Christ at Christmas.  It really isn’t about the gifts.  It’s about Christ being born into this world as our Savior.  And so, with that, I will choose not to focus on being broke, but rather being the richest girl in the world because Christ has come.

Recently I have had several times that I could have been discouraged.

My husband had a procedure last week and while he was in recovery, I was talking to his male nurse (RN). He said nurses are a dime a dozen, there is no longer a shortage, and finding a good job in nursing is difficult.

I live in Memphis, TN. Home of some of the best hospitals out there. We have St. Jude, The Regional Medical Center, Lebonheur Children’s Hospital….not to mention several Methodist Hospitals, St. Francis Hospitals and Baptist Memorial Hospital.

I am a glass is full kind of person. I don’t choose to focus on the negative….there are too many people out there that do that for me already.

At first, when the nurse told me that nurses are a dime a dozen, I felt a little deflated. I am working super hard in school and I love every minute of it. So far, I have made great grades and stayed focused on my studies and pretty much given up any social life with family or friends that existed before January.  So, why would this guy want to deflate me?

The conversation I had with said male nurse makes me wonder if he is a little burned out and in need of a break. It reminded me to always encourage people to follow their dreams and to NOT blow their candle out. It takes people so long to finally determine what they want to do with their lives….look at me….I’m 41 and in college pursuing a dream. So, I heartily appreciate the reminder to encourage others, cheer them on, and support them in whatever endeavor it is they have chosen as their life’s mission. I will not blow their candle out and send their dreams into darkness. I will help them, motivate them and send them well wishes. After all, one day I will be a nurse. I have a heart full of compassion and a love for humankind. I want to help people and to inspire people.

Blessings :O)

Comprehension

I have the best A & P instructor.  He lets us know what tests will be the hardest and what will be the easiest. Up until yesterday, both lab and lecture have been a lot of memorization.  Anyone can memorize stuff if they study it enough.  But now, it’s all comprehension.

I never really put much thought into memorization verses comprehension.  Well, let me tell you…there’s a lot of differences.  You memorize where you live, how to drive your car, where your moms house is, where the grocery store is….etc.  You don’t even have to think about it.  You do it automatically.  Easy peasy once you’ve done it a few times.

Comprehension…..well, it’s a bit different.  It’s the difference in just driving a car verses knowing why the car starts, what causes the fuel to go to the engine and what do the spark plugs do and how do the wheels align and stay that way and on and on and on.  WHY?

We had our hardest lab test yesterday and I feel certain I got an A.  I studied a lot of hours to not just memorize the data, but to know it.  I mean, you can memorize it for the class, or you can “know” it for your life as a nurse.  So, I really try to know the information so that when I am a nurse, I can be the best nurse I can be.

On Nov. 18, I will take the hardest lecture test we will have.  It’s 100% comprehension.  The breakdown of the muscle fibers, the contraction and relaxation, the joints and movements of the skeletal system, and the breakdown of the entire central and peripheral nervous system.

I have been really busy studying for the lab exam.  Now that it’s over, I will focus my time on the lecture exam coming up.  I seriously feel like I am living my life in 2 week increments right now…..and I don’t see an end in sight anytime soon!

But honestly, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.  It’s hard.  But I love proving to myself that even though I just turned 41, I am smart enough and compassionate enough to be one of the top in my class and the eventual nurse I dream of one day being.

If you’re a nursing student…keep your head up!  All your very hard work, endurance and passion will pay off one day soon.  After many years in school, you will one day look back and it will have passed in the blink of an eye.  Be sure to make friends along the way.  Enjoy the studies you are learning.  Get to know it….not to pass it, but to be smart and informed.  The human body is amazing!!!  Get to know it for yourself, not for anyone else and not just for a grade.  You’ll thank yourself for it later in life.

Have a blessed day everyone! Remember to stop and enjoy life along the way.

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Volunteer

I’ve been listening to students and teachers talking about nursing pre-reqs, nursing school, and being a nurse.  One of the things I keep hearing, but no one ever seems to respond to, is that what you do while you are in school to gain experience matters!

One day, in my not too distant future (I pray!), I will be accepted into a nursing program.  I figure I should be able to start the nursing program in about a year, Fall 2015, after I’m finished with all my sciences.  What will I do for the next year while I’m in school to be able to gain some experience?

I decided to check out some volunteer opportunities!!

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I contacted Methodist Hospital and filled out an application.  I’m so excited because they called me today to confirm approval for a background check.  I should hear from the hospital I chose in the next few days.  I pretty much have Friday’s free, so think I will volunteer my Friday’s for the rest of this semester and then see what my schedule is next semester and plan accordingly.

I’m super excited to be able to help people and make a difference; as well as getting my feet wet in a hospital setting.

Why do I want to be a nurse?

Apparently I have to write a paper and submit my answer to that question with my nursing program application.  How do I put into words what I feel in my heart and soul?  I love people.  I love giving people my best.  I love making a difference in someone’s life especially when they need someone to make a difference.  I have unfortunately had several surgeries in my lifetime.  I’ve learned a lot of how a really good nurse can completely change your entire experience.  I had popliteal entrapment syndrome and had to have a large part of my gastronomic muscle removed.  It was literally the most painful experience of my entire life.

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There is no way I could have gone through that kind of pain without a super fabulous nurse.  I had the best ever.  The night shift nurses were definitely more humorous, compassionate and patient.  They would come in and just chat with me for 15-20 minutes in the middle of the night.  They didn’t just come check on me at the assigned times….they came to visit.  Of course, I did have an extremely unique type of surgery, and I gave them each a box of girl scout cookies….Plus I never ask for anything, so I’m sure all those factors come into play.

Nevertheless, I am very much a positive and glass is full type of person.  I pray I am able to make a huge difference, and to give people the best of me.

Take a break and enjoy some pics

I love capturing memories through photography.  I had a photography business license from 2007 until December 2013.  I decided to let it go while in college and pursuing my degree. 

Here are some pics I’ve taken.  Some are of my handsome hubby.  Some are of my beautiful grandson, Reece. Some are of my 4 legged kiddos, Bella and Rane.  Some are just random stuff I like.  Enjoy! 

(please be kind and don’t steal images.  thanks!)

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