Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I'm Fairly Certain

There are three things that will get me through nursing school:

1. Prayer

2. The encouragement of family & friends, including all of you. Especially those who are in nursing school and can totally relate.

3. A well-stocked liquor cabinet.

The more blog posts I read by fellow nursing students, the more I get freaked out. I KNOW this journey is NOT going to be a walk in the park, but the more I read, the more I feel like I'm totally unprepared and this is going to be even more difficult than I could even imagine. And I met with a friend yesterday who told me that one of our mutual friends is really having a tough time with her accelerated nursing program she started in May, the very program I was set to do before I changed my mind (again) and settled on the one I am now doing. She said she's really stressed and overwhelmed and thinking the accelerated program was a bad idea. Granted, she is working and going to school, and the program is mostly online, so probably a lot is self taught, but still.

I need to quit freaking out, but seriously, if I'm already getting myself worked up, stressed, and overwhelmed before school has even started... this might end up being a really long 13 months. Maybe I should have asked my doctor for a strong anti-anxiety?

T-7 days. Dun dun dunnnnnnn

(side note: In the event that I don't get around to replying to comments from my last post... or this one... or any future posts, I really, really appreciate all of your kind words. I love responding to comments because I think it makes my blogging relationships a little more than "I read you, you read me," but as I'm sure you can imagine, life has been busy and about to get even more hectic, so time may not always be on my side. But I am SO thrilled that you all like my apartment. It's been fun and a lot of work, but I think having a homey place to go to at the end of the day will be exactly what I need. And for those who offered a listening ear, I WILL be taking you up on that offer, I can guarantee that. You guys are the best!)

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Monday, June 27, 2011

Kind of Like an Episode of 'Cribs'

Except I don't live in a mansion, I don't have an amazing pool in my yard, and you won't see the inside of my refrigerator-- or any part of my kitchen, for that matter, as I have yet to finish putting it together.

BUT, you will see pics of every other room in my apartment! I'm sure it looks like I have a ton of stuff and that I probably spent quite a bit of money, but I did it all relatively inexpensively. I'm actually going to finish my kitchen and make some changes when I get back up there on Thursday, so I'll add some more pictures later in the week, but here are some shots of it as of now:

This is what you see when you come up the stairs and look to the right. The couch my parents have had in the attic for years, waiting for one of us to take it. I bought a slipcover for it and some pillows and it looks totally different. That end table used to be in our sunroom and I repainted and bought a new shade for the lamp. I'm changing the decor on the wall behind the couch.

& the other side of the living area. The chair and lamp I had from college, the TV was free, and the rug my landlord supplied. On the other side of this wall is my bathroom, which is off of a tiny alcove that has a washer and dryer in the closet.

There's actually a full tub, but I highly doubt I'll ever use it... the thought of sitting my butt where someone else bathed kind of grosses me out... no many how many times I sprayed and scrubbed Kaboom all over it.

This is the side opposite the living area, to the left when you come up the stairs. If you're facing the table and windows (with A/C from my landlord, whoop!), the kitchen is to the left. Those chairs almost became firewood, by the way. I bought the table and chairs off of craigslist for a steal, but the chairs were scratched up and an ugly cream, and the legs had cream detailing. I figured since I'd already repainted 3 pieces of furniture and 4 lamps, I could handle a few chairs. Oh. My. Gosh. I wanted to slam them on the driveway. Thank God my mother took over before I could ruin them. Also, those fake flowers are going in the trash (had them for years) and the posters (that I bought 6 years ago) are being switched out.

This is my bedroom, which is behind the wall where the couch is. I have a headboard that I got for dirt cheap, but it's on backorder until next week, & I need to put a frame around the poster, but other than that, the bedroom is finished.

This is the second bedroom, but I'm using it as an office. It's behind the wall of the dining area. The table & lamp were in the attic, so I just repainted them. The chair (which has an ottoman that my mom needs to make a slipcover for) used to be in our sunroom, so I just bought a slipcover for it.

& the other side of the office. The only thing left to do in here is hang up a poster and add the ottoman.

So that's the place. It's small and rough around the edges, but not too shabby for my first place, especially since I'll only be in it for 13 months. Maybe I should also add photog classes to my schedule because the quality of these shots are terrible haha. I have orientation on Friday and school starts a week from Tuesday... Oh. My. God.

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Monday, June 20, 2011

Movin' On Up.

I seriously hope writing that title gets the damn "Jefferson's" theme song out of my head, because every time I think about the fact that I am moving this Saturday, I instantly start singing the song, and I'm starting to annoy myself.

Yes, folks, that's right, I'm moving this saturday. In FIVE days. I'm really trying not to have a panic attack. I went up to my apartment last Wednesday to get my keys and clean the place. You know, I kind of planned on being there for a couple hours, assuming my cleaning would just be really light, touch up stuff for my OCD self, because I figured my landlord did a thorough cleaning for me. Um, no. It was disgusting and full of the previous tenants hair. That's just all kinds of gross. My mom and I spent 6 hours up there scrubbing every surface of the place, but at least now I know that it's spotless and that it was cleaned well.

Speaking of my landlord, this woman loves to talk. She's very nice and we have a good rapport, but she kind of freaked me out on Wednesday. She was telling me not to become chummy with the guy that lives below me because, and I quote, "Well, he's not a pedophile, but he's just creepy." Awesome. Guess it's a good thing I bought a wireless security system. Here's to hoping he provides some decent blog material.

Aside from my clothes and toiletries, everything is packed and ready to go. I'm sure I'm taking entirely too much stuff considering I will only be there for a little over a year. I do need to repaint some dining chairs I just bought off craigslist, but other than that, there isn't much left to do besides load up the truck and get it up there.

I have orientation all day on July 1 & the first day of class starts in two weeks, July 5th. Needless to say, with all of these big changes, I'm feeling a mixed variety of emotions. On one hand, I'm really excited to finally be moving on with my life and getting the ball rolling for my future. In many ways, I cannot wait wait for this change. Things have been kind of rough lately in many ways (which I would love to write about, but don't want some people to read it) and I think having a fresh start is exactly what I need. It's been a really long two years and I can't believe that in 13 months, I will be finished with this chapter of my life and will be a real grown up with a real, adult job. But on the other hand, I'm incredibly nervous. After two years being back at home, I've gotten really used to being with my family more often than not and definitely used to a relatively stress free life. It's going to be a major adjustment living in a new town where I don't know anyone, living by myself, going to a new school where I don't know anyone, and starting an incredibly intense program. I've been feeling pretty anxious the past couple weeks and I'm hoping it doesn't get a whole lot worse. I generally have a hard time with change, but tend to be fine after about 24 hours, so fingers crossed that's the case here.

I know the time is right. I know it's time for me to grow up, gain my independence, and be like most every other 24 year old I know. I've worked really hard to get where I am and my dreams of being an RN are finally within reach. As long as I don't get up there and feel like I'm making the biggest mistake of my life and have wasted the past two years, I'm really hopeful that this 13 month journey will be one of the best, most exciting, trying, and impressionable times of my life.

I hope to post again this week, but if not, I will put up all kinds of pictures of my new place by next Monday. I haven't been good about checking in on all my blog friends, but know that you're never far from my thoughts. I hope you all are having a great summer, I can't believe it's almost July!

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Friday, June 17, 2011

Book Review: Time of My Life

I read this book over a month ago, before Water for Elephants, and LOVED it. It was such an easy read, but so relatable, so well written, so. darn. true. Actually, when I bought it with the other 90 books I purchased, I had a feeling it'd probably be one of my favorites of all time, and I was right, it is. Much of it, I was nodding my head in agreement, as if the writer and character had read my thoughts. I highly recommend this book and hope to read some more novels from Allison Winn Scotch.

Jillian is a wife and stay-at-home-mom who has grown complacent with her life in the suburbs of New York City. She constantly thinks about her former life as an advertising exec, her former love, Jackson, and can't help but ask herself, "What if?" While venting to a massage therapist, he "releases her chi" (I know, kind of corny, but I swear, the book is good) and she suddenly finds herself 7 years in the past, with the ability to rewrite her future. Follow her as she decides whether or not to make it work with Jackson, or stay with her future husband, Henry, and as she decides if she wants to continue climbing the ranks at her job or give up the success and income to be a stay-at-home-mom. In the end, will she be happy with what she chooses, or still have regrets?

Memorable lines that stuck with me:

On friendships: "Meg (her best friend) got lost in the shuffle. Lost in the innocuous way that happens when life piles up. You grab a friend on her cell for two minutes, then promise to call each other back later, but later becomes tomorrow, and tomorrow ebbs into a week, and before you've even realized it, a month has flown by, and you've disengaged yourself from each other's worlds. Which doesn't mean that you don't adore each other, and certainly doesn't mean that when you do catch up that you don't pour out all of the missing details. You do. But for that month or those weeks, you're blind to the nuances that change a person over the course of time, that stack up like dominoes until she's a different person entirely" (pg. 63). -- this describes my relationships beyond perfectly.

On infertility: "'I can't tell you how many times I thought I was pregnant. Crying on the toilet because my period hadn't come or because I'd forgotten to take a pill exactly on the dot- because, you know, that's what the stupid package warns you about- or because of whatever. And Jesus, I remember being so filled with goddamn fear because, well, what the hell do you do if you're 18 and pregnant or 20 and pregnant, and now, I'm 28, and I can't get fucking pregnant, and then when I do, I lose the baby! Jesus, If I knew that it would be so hard to get pregnant, I'd have had a lot more sex'" (pg. 65). -- my fears. My fears exactly. And should those fears become a reality (as I've already been told is highly likely), this paragraph is likely to exit my mouth several times.

On weddings: "And then we both agreed that we wanted the event to be as intimate and non-frenzied as possible. 'Less of a circus, more of a celebration,' he said at the time, and I nodded my head concurring... Did anyone ever look back at a wedding and say, 'Thank God we opted for the cherry swirl in the middle of the cake because without it, it would have been a disastrous evening for all involved!'" (pg. 170).-- again, my sentiments exactly.

On finding happiness in the simply things: "I sink onto the kitchen floor and gaze up at her card, with its lopsided snowflakes and piles of glitter. That is how life should be, I think. Shiny and imperfect but, despite the flaws, still full of promise for the year to come. How did I miss that in the first place?" (pg. 247).

Again, I highly recommend this book. It's an easy read with a wonderful message and I think it's truly relatable for everyone, even if in the tiniest bit.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

DIY: Dresser & Tables

When I first found out I was going to be moving into my own apartment so that I could be closer to my nursing program, I was ecstatic. I've never lived by myself, and, after two years being back in my parents' home, I think the time is right to move on and reclaim my independence. However, I was immediately overwhelmed with how much "stuff" it takes to furnish an apartment and how nice having roommates was if only for the fact that the cost of everything was split.

In case you didn't know, I'm crazy cheap (or frugal, for all you PC freaks.). I want the biggest bang for my buck and my favorite words are "sale," "clearance," and "free." Which is why I love my mother and her pack-rat ways. You see, I get my thriftiness from her, and while I used to always give her crap for how much junk she saved, all that junk is truly saving me a bundle of money. I'll brag about all the stuff I didn't have to buy when I move in and show off my new apartment, but for now, I'm just going to mention a couple things.

My parents have saved an insane amount of furniture for my brother and me. When we re-did rooms in the house, 90% of the time, the furniture went upstairs, to be nestled away in the attic. Like the dresser my brother and I had when we were babies.

Before: gag me. In amazing shape, but I hate the wood grain look, the hardware, etc. Gross.

It was a perfectly fine piece of furniture, just not my taste. I hated the wood grain, the brass hardware, & the style of the hardware. I'm not a fan of the lines of it either, but since I'm not a magician, and even I know my limitations, so I fixed what I could. I might be a princess, but I'm definitely not afraid to get my hands dirty, so I decided refinishing furniture was something I could figure out. I spent several hours (in 97* heat) sanding, stripping, priming, painting, and touching up the dresser, then added some contemporary brush nickel hardware. I'm really happy with the outcome. Is it the most beautiful piece in the world? No. But it looks better than it did and will serve its purpose, so I have zero complaints.

After: in velvet brown with brush nickel hardware

Then I found this old magazine table in the basement. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a before picture, but it was a nasty dark wood from the 70s that was better fit for a bachelors pad... if said bachelor wore a polyester suit and had zero eye for design. Hideous. I spray painted it in a high-gloss black and will use it as a side table in my "office." Perfect.

Finally, a couple months ago, I went to a party at a family friends house and she asked if I needed any furniture. I mentioned I really needed a nightstand or smaller table that can be used as one. She had an end table she wanted to get rid of, so I, of course, took it (Thanks, Mrs. McLaughlin!). Again, a fine table, but it had some wear and tear, and I didn't like the wood stain, so now it matches the dresser and will look good in my blue & brown bedroom. Plus, my neighbor told me it looks like stuff her daughter bought at Ikea. Except mine is real, solid wood, and already came assembled. In the words of Charlie Sheen, "Winning."

Before: fine, but not my taste.

And after, with the magazine table behind it that I repainted.

The best part? All three pieces of furniture cost me under $75 for materials and supplies. Plus, I get the satisfaction of knowing that I actually am capable of being a little DIY-er.

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sunday Stealing

I promise this blog isn't going to turn into a meme-only blog. A real post or two will be up this week!

In the meantime, here's a little Sunday Stealing:

1. Your ex's car is on the side of the road, on fire. What do you do?
Uh.... what ex? I have an ex? Well, if it was a civil break up, I'd call the police. If he was an a-hole and cheated on me or something like that, I'd laugh and say, "Karma's a bitch." Haha. Kidding. Sort of.

2. Your best friend tells you she is pregnant. What is your reaction?
"Oh my God, seriously?!" Eventually I'd say congratulations, but only one of my friends is married, and already has a kid, so it'd be a little shocking if any of them said they were expecting.

3. When is the last time you wanted to punch someone in the face?
Hahahaha... I have no clue. I always jokingly say something or someone makes me want to punch something or someone, but I couldn't tell you when that was.

4. What is the last thing you spent money on?
Spray paint and a lampshade yesterday.

5. Do you think you gained or lost weight this past month?
My weights is always fluctuating, so I'll say it stayed about the same.

6. Crunchy or Puffy Cheetos?
Puffy, but I only eat Cheetos if people I babysit for have them and that's rare.

7. The first person on your friends list just called you a bitch. What do you do?
Depends if they were serious or not. If yes, I'd be like, "Uhh, OK? What ticked you off today?"

8. Congratulations! You just had a son. What’s his name?
Kelan or Barrett

9. Congratulations! You just had a daughter. What’s her name?
Juliet or Camille or Bryn... and don't you dare think about taking "my" names.

10. What are you craving right now?
Nothing, I just ate a ton of fruit and a few sweet potato fries.

11. What was the last thing you cried about?
Ha, I teared up watching Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition last night, but a good cry? I can't remember.

12. When you buy something and your change is 2 cents, do you keep it or tell the cashier to keep it?
Hell yea I keep it! Imagine if you told the cashier every time your change was 2 cents to keep it... that starts adding up!

13. What color is your tissue box?
White with a purple flower. Sidenote: I call them Kleenex, not tissues.

14. Do you have a ceiling fan in your bedroom, and if so, is there dust on that fan?
Yes and probably a little dust.

15. What was the last voicemail you received about?
My dad about something my uncle told us.

16. Have you ever blocked someone on Facebook?
No. I don't even know how to do that. Wouldn't defriending them be enough? Blocking someone just seems a bit excessive. That being said, I have "blocked" people from my news feed because their statuses annoyed the heck out of me.

17. Scariest thing you’ve experienced in the last year?
I can't think of anything, I've been pretty blessed this past year.

18. Do you wear a name tag at work?
It wouldn't do me any good, considering the people I'm around all day can't read ;) But to volunteer at the hospital, I wear a name tag.

19. What kind of car do you want?
I'm pretty happy with my Ford Escape, but I would love a Nissan 350Z or Mercedes/Audi/Lexus convertible at some point in my life.

20. What do you order when you go to Burger King?
I try to not eat fast food, but if I do, it certainly isn't Burger King.

Hope everyone has had a fabulous weekend!!

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Monday, June 6, 2011

Monday Minute

Sigh... it's Monday. Again. I work all day and am all kinds of lazy, so here's a little Monday Minute with Ian. Click the link below if you want to join in on the fun.

Monday Minute

1 - What part of 'no' do you not understand?
People know better than to use that word with me, so it's really never an issue.

2 - Which current reality show do you think you could win?
The only reality shows I watch aren't competitions, besides Amazing Race, which I could maybe win, if I got in better shape. But I'd fail on Real World, because I'm not a drunken skank. I'd fail on Real Housewives because I've never had plastic surgery, I never have drama, and I'm not a millionaire. And I'd fail on 19 kids and counting because my name doesn't begin with a J.

3 - Would you amputate your right arm for ten million dollars?
Probably not. I'm right handed, so losing it would be a real pain in the ass. And I really don't think getting a prosthetic and going through the rehab of it all would be worth the money.

4 - If I say, just bring it - what you got?
I wish I had a witty answer for this, but I "got" nothin'.

and finally...

5 - You are opening a restaurant. What type or theme of food are you serving?

A mix of everything. I hate nothing more than trying to decide on a restaurant with other people. One person wants Mexican, one wants Chinese, one wants Italian. I'd like a restaurant that serves a little mix of it all, but does not have buffet in its title.

Also, as of yesterday (the 5th), I get my apartment keys in 10 days & start school in 1 month. Have I mentioned that I'm starting to freak out a little? Because I am.

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Thursday, June 2, 2011

7 months later and nothing has changed.

At least not in the online dating world.

Y'all. I want to know HOW in sam hell PEOPLE FIND SPOUSES FROM ONLINE DATING. My neighbor actually just got engaged to a girl he met on match.com 6 months ago. My brother went on a 4 hour first date tonight with a girl he met online. Then I log onto chemistry.com and do you know what cards I've been dealt? The jokers. Seriously, that's how I'm going to refer to them, because I'm 0 for 3 with this online dating crap and I know now it really is all a joke.

Fortunately, I truly did join chemistry.com for the stories. I'm about to be incredibly busy for 13 months. I don't want and don't need the distraction of a relationship, and, quite honestly, I think I need to become happier with myself, before I even begin to think about letting someone else in. So, yes, I joined for the stories, but then I found out I had to be a paying member to communicate with anyone, so my plan for stories almost went out the window. However, there was an ad this weekend for three months for the price of one, and I figured why not? And maybe I secretly hope there will be at least one decent guy I come across, although I am convinced the decent guy ratio to decent girl ratio is about 1:100 in the online dating world.

But, as a matter of fact, I was paired with a decent guy. He's actually very nice and will make some girl very happy, but I'm just not that girl. Oh, did I mention that I KNOW HIM. Haha. Hello, awkwardness. I was perusing the people I was matched with and saw him my jaw dropped and I couldn't stop laughing. I immediately clicked "not interested" in the hopes that he never saw we were matched. He really is very nice, but last time we hung out in a group (in January), somehow my virginity came up and that was all he could talk about. Like, seriously, for a good 45 minutes, until I finally asked him to quit talking about it. I may have even written about it on here? I'll have to check. Anyway, any guy that can't get past that yes, I am a 24 year old virgin and am perfectly fine with that needs to keep moving on. Plus, the attraction just is not there at all, at least not on my end.

I've received an email, too, now that I'm a paying member. All it said was, "How are u?" He sure has a way with words, huh? That's quite possibly the most succinct email I have ever received, for any reason at all. Here's his deets, let's play a game of, "what about this guy doesn't sound like Marianne's type."

1. 29

2. Lives in Florence, KY, over 2 hours away from Indianapolis.

3. Is divorced.

4. Has a child.

5. High school graduate

Take a guess which four qualities I don't like.

Listen, at the risk of sounding shallow, the only thing I find attractive about this man on paper is his age, the fact that he doesn't smoke, and his profile said his little boy is his whole world, because that's precious (but at this age and point in my life, I don't want a man with a kid). And here's what irks me... I freakin listed on my damn profile what is highly important to me, which does include never married, no children, and at least a college degree. This was my main complaint when I legitimately tried eharmony & match- guys who seemingly have zero qualities that I consider to be important are the ones trying to communicate with me. Which leads me to believe all they do is look at the profile picture and act on that alone.

I'm not saying I'm unwilling to overlook some things, but come on. I really don't think it's unreasonable for me to want a never married, childless man.

I need to just give you guys a running list of the people who express interest in me and their stats, so that you don't think I'm being too ridiculous. Nonetheless, this should be rather entertaining.

In other news, I have a ton to blog about, which I hope to get on top of pronto.


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