Wednesday, June 11, 2014

A letter to my "last year self"

I've been doing a lot of reminiscing lately. Last year at this time, we were packing for our 5 month adventure to San Antonio, TX to Randolph Air Force Base. I remember feeling optimistic. In fact, I remember thinking San Antonio was going to be this lush, green, fabulous city of love.

It wasn't. It had a fake, man-made river with cheesy chain restaurants along it, that drunk people frequently fell in. It was in a horrid drought. The highlight of San Antonio was it's movie theater that served delicious beer and food!

I didn't love San Antonio. However, believe it or not, I look back at that phase is fond memories. I am recently finding myself longing to relive some of those days, believe it or not. I counted down the days to returning to AZ, but I remember even thinking, "I'm going to look back on this phase with a soft heart...."

I was right! I miss cozy nights of crock-pot scrambled eggs in our humid & tiny Air-Force-Inn hotel room.

So here goes my letter to "my last year self":

Dear you,

You get to escape normal life for 5 months! Live it. Breath it. Experience it. Stop worrying. In 5 months you'll return to your home with your yard work, house cleaning, pool maintenance, and responsibilities. You'll return to your job - your hospital where you know everyone and everyone knows you. You'll return to your running group, they aren't going anywhere. Your friends aren't going anywhere. If they do, then they aren't your true friends.

You get 5 months of no house-keeping. I know you love to clean house, but isn't it kind of nice to have a day off from work that doesn't have 6 hours of cleaning on your "to do list"?

Initially getting your travel-assignment contract figured out will be stressful...but don't worry - there are many many lives to save in the ER's of San Antonio. You're going to learn so much, and gain so much ability by jumping from hospital to hospital on a daily basis!

Enjoy this short phase of life, where you main job is exercising and cooking funny crock-pot meals for your husband. You get to have lunch with a hot-shot in his flight suit. Your evenings will be spent at Starbucks with his classmates and spouses - quizzing them. You'll get to know the wives - and have some incredible memories with these people!

These 5 months will teach you something very bold about life. It will teach you that you can put yourself in any environment and figure it out. There were a lot of unknowns in this adventure - and things seemed to work out. Never turn down another opportunity like this! Ever again!

You will return to AZ - to your home. But you may feel a little different. You may feel more vivacious. You will take more risks. 5 months in an Air Force Inn in hot, sweaty San Antonio will change the way you think about life.....

Have you ever looked back, and wanted to write a letter to yourself? What phase of your life would you do this to? I'm sure the more you experience in life, the more you would want to "write letters to your old self"....

Monday, June 9, 2014

11 Questions

I stole this one from my sister Lisa. These are always fun! They are also a good distraction when I just don't know what to blog about....;)

1.   What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning? 

Stumble into the bathroom, put on my contacts, get dressed in my workout clothes that I lay out the night before. If I'm lifting weights, biking, or swimming - I eat a piece of toast with peanut/almond butter. If I'm running, I chug a big glass of water!

2. What do you eat for breakfast? 

Whole wheat toast with peanut butter or almond butter for a pre or post-work out.
Before leaving for work I will make a smoothie with berries, spinach, protein powder, flax seeds, and almond milk.
3. What’s your go-to weeknight meal?
Fish tacos. We always have tilapia in the freezer - and it takes 10 minutes to cook.
I season and cook the fish with peppers and onions. Serve it on a tortilla with spinach, greet yogurt, and salsa. (If I have cabbage, I'll chop up cabbage and make a slaw to serve with it)

4. Do you do any kind of journaling or memory keeping? 
My blog is definitely like a journal for me. I also have a book my sister gave me called "The 5 Year Memory Book". I write down my favorite thing from each day in it!

5. How do you fix your coffee, or do you prefer tea (or neither)? 
Depends on my mood. I either drink it black (which is a habit I started on our backpacking trip). Or I will put some Coffee-mate sugar free vanilla coffee creamer in it. If I'm drinking it iced, I definitely need it black! (I know, weird quirks)

6. What’s the last good book you read?  
The Light Between Oceans. I have a hard time giving the synopsis of this book without giving away too much. But it's really good!
7. If you had a day all to yourself with no schedule, how would you spend it?
(Let me also add that this "no-schedule day" would not be in June with 110-degree temps!)
I'd go for a long trail run at Sabino Canyon, and then stop at Starbucks for Venti iced coffee.
Then I'd shower up, make a lunch of caprese and crackers, and have a picnic at a park with Ryan. After our picnic, we'd play catch or Frisbee, then maybe do a little shopping, stop at Sprouts and get some seafood, and cook a delicious grilled dinner on the patio with a bottle of wine!
Star gaze in our hot tub.

8. What are three things on your life list? 
#1 Backpack the Kalalua Trail in Kauai, Hawaii. (It's a hike through the mountains to a private island one can only get to by hiking.) It's listed as one of the Top 10 Most Dangerous Hikes by Adventure magazine. We plan on doing it summer of 2015!
#2 Use my nursing experience to do some type of mission work - be it in Africa, India, or even deploy to a national disaster without our own country (through a group called DMAT that triages/treated people during Hurricane Katrina, 911, ect)
#3 Travel Italy. (must see Florence, Rome, and Venice)

9. When you really need to relax or de-stress, where do you go and what do you do? 
Run or swim alone. I also distress well with a glass of wine, and a cutting board of ingredients to make a new recipe!
10. What’s on your nightstand?
"The 5 Year Memory Book", my glasses, my Bible, an incense burner (I like to burn incense to distress too...)
11. What’s the last thing you do before you go to sleep? 
Brush my teeth. I have to go to sleep with a fresh taste in my mouth. (I'm narcotic about tooth brushing....). Triple check my alarm clock. Kiss my husband good night, and always say "I'm so excited for tomorrow". (even if I'm not excited, if you say it - you believe it, right?!)
Your turn! Answer at least 2!