Friday, November 1, 2013

October: The Month of Miracles & Bliss

I'm really not even sure where to begin! I am both happy and sad to see October go. October is one of my favorite months ever and this year's October was especially wonderful! Pictures, stories, you know, the usual to follow!

First of all I got to see Mark (and fam!) for 5 days, which is always too short a wonderful, awesome, fabulous, fun, hilarious, exciting, jam-packed-exhausting, wicked awesome good time. 
This is my favorite ice cream place in Texas. It's a throw-back ice cream parlor inside and just adorable. Plus the ice cream (!!!!!) is awesome. This time I got roasted campfire marshmallow (yummy!) and Mark went with his usual: classic vanilla. Out of ALL of the yummy, fun, chunky, crazy flavors he always chooses vanilla. I'll never understand it. 
Mark treated me to Six Flags!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was a blast...until it rained with lightning and we got stuck inside Mr. Freeze for 2 1/2 hours while the rollercoasters were shutdown. 
BUT finally it opened just before we were about to call it quits and we got to ride it twice in about 15 minutes. It. was. AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!

Mark also makes a mean chocolate milkshake. They are DELISH. They are a close second to In N Out's chocolate shakes and that, my friends, is sayin' somethin' because I LOOOOOOVE In N Out's chocolate shakes. Then we were going through Mark's baby/kid/high school pictures and he showed me his letterman jacket. What a stud right??? Right. I know. *swoon*
I am quite certain I told Mark 6,785,432 times how adorable his baby pictures are. I just wanted to squeeze him!!!!

And the next time I see Mark will be in 35 days December for our wedding. Romantic? Yes, kind of. LONG? YES. But that's ok. It is pretty romantic. Plus, holy catscans have I got a lot to do between now and December!!!!

Next: I got back from Texas, worked for 3 days and headed to *sigh* New England. Oh HAPPINESS. And now for a flying story: Whenever I fly home I usually fly Spirit because it's a direct flight to Boston and it's cheap. But you get what you pay for and about 87% of time I have flown with Spirit, my flight is delayed, which is annoying anyway but when your estimated arrival time is 12:30am, delays are A PAIN. Well, this time everything was a go. Flight was on time, good weather, boarded my flight, hooray! I was deep in my Nancy Drew book when I realized it had been a little longer than usual and finally the captain came on and said something about having to recount the bags. Annoying, but whatever. Then another 15-20 minutes went by and one of the flight attendants announced that due to "an unfavorable comment" by a passenger, we all had to de-board the plane so TSA could inspect the plane. I was NOT HAPPY. We were told we could leave our bags so I left my carry on in the overheard and took my personal bag. As soon as we were back in the terminal, we were instructed we had to go back onto the plane to get all of our bags so we had to RE-BOARD and DE-BOARD the plan again. Thirty minutes later after TSA searched the plane, we had to line up and have our boarding passes scanned. Not happy but at least they were being safe and I really did appreciate that. I felt terribly for my brother and sister-in-law who had to pick me up though...Finally we boarded and then not 15 minutes after we had boarded, another person was thrown off the plane. I was in the back so I didn't hear or see the commotion, I only heard clapping for the first half of the plane and thought I swear if another fool makes me deboard this plane...The rumor at the back of the plane (this is so dramatic) was this woman claimed to be from the Boston Globe and was allegedly snapping photos of people while we were waiting in the terminal. SKETCH. Get her outta here! She was escorted off the plane and then very shortly after that, the captain came on and announced we would be leaving. THANK GOODNESS. I made it home and was in bed around 5am. But it was absolutely delightful to see my sibs and Scotty!!!!

First thing the next morning (aka a few hours later) I headed to the ocean. The North Atlantic. Oh. my. gosh. The smell, the sounds, the sights...I was in heaven. My heart swelled up a bit with such happiness. There was even a few beach roses left in bloom. I inhaled them, literally. 

The colors. Oh the colors. I couldn't stop taking pictures and just taking it all in. New England in the fall is one of the most stunning mosaics of color ever to behold. I can't believe such beauty--sights, smells, sounds--exists. It's my absolute favorite scene. I even recorded a video crunching leaves just because I was so happy. I know, I'm silly. Oh well! It made me happy! The only thing missing, which would have made the trip prefect, was Mark. Maybe next year we can be there together! Mark my words, he will see a New England fall, he has to!

 I even got to see my beloved Boston. I drove, literally, through it (sadly only through, didn't have time for a day in Boston this trip!) on my way to meet our wedding photographer. I love this city!!! 

During my trip I had my usual twin lobster plate at Al's with my gramps, it's tradition after all! And then another day I had a very long overdue lunch with a very dear friend, whom I consider a mentor and a mother, Elaine, at Blue Moon Evolution in Exeter. I've never been here before but it is wonderful! They get all of their ingredients from farms within 100 miles and boy is their menu yummy! Then we walked through downtown Exeter to get ice cream and strolled along the river as we ate. I had apple pie ice cream...mmmm mmmm mmmm!!!! The whole afternoon was blissful. Just blissful!

After lunch I decided to just "pop" into one of my favorite stores, Serendipity, where I used to get most of my jewelry and I found the earrings I'm going to wear on my wedding day! Simple and elegant, just what I wanted.  


If you're not familiar, this is the LDS Boston Temple (where Mark and I will be getting married!!!). Beautiful. I got to spend an evening with Heath and Emma here. Afterward, we went to dinner. I LOVE spending time with these two. My stomach hurt from laughing so hard! 

Now, one of my assignments while I was home was to scan baby pictures for wedding stuff. It was a BLAST going through our old family albums. I have a few incriminating pictures of my brothers (muah! ah! ah!) and many more cute ones! 

Dane. Gosh he had the best curls when he was a baby!

Heath-totes presh!

 Baby Gabe

I LOVE this one of Heath!!!! 

One of my favorites of my darling grandmother Barbara, and grandfather Harry

Perhaps my favorite part was stumbling upon albums of my mom and her family when they were younger. My grandfather, Roger Christiance, passed away a few years ago and unfortunately I didn't get to know him very well because we lived so far away from each other and in more recent years, his health wasn't very good, but I have been thinking about him a lot lately and was delighted to find some pictures of him. He is SO handsome. One of the few memories I have from visiting him is eating rice crispie cereal and giggling about how they "snap! crackle! pop!" 

Being home was so wonderful and therapeutic and blissful. It was crazy busy; I was up early and home and in bed late but it was probably one of my favorite visits thus far. Oh New England! I can't wait for December!!!

Then. I got back and was invited to a Halloween party hosted my Dr. W and his wife. It was LEGIT. He told me I would know which house it was and as I was, according to my GPS, approaching I wasn't so sure...until I came around the bend in the road and there was a house with strobe lights flashing from the top floor, "Yeah" by Usher blaring and tons of cars. I couldn't help but laugh. It was really, really fun! My costume wasn't that cool or original, I just wore a masquerade mask, but I was crunched for time and so it worked.

Group shot of the people I work with on one of my floors

The man himself: Dr. W

Now you may be wondering about these miracles. Well, for starters I found out I got the dietitian job I was able to miraculously find in the town Mark and I are moving to after we get married!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HUGE miracle. The fact that it was available and that I got it and that they are willing to work around my schedule and let me start after the wedding is a huge miracle and relief.

Secondly. As you may recall, I took a board certification exam a month ago to become a Certified Nutrition Support Clinician (CNSC). This basically means that I now have the knowledge and skill to work with very acute populations (ICU, trauma, NICU). I was ABSOLUTELY certain I had failed. 100% positive. My colleague and friend Amy, who had also taken the test, called me while I was running on Monday to tell me the test results had arrived (they come ONLY via snail mail) and she had passed! I was sick to my stomach nervous as I drove home because I did, but mostly did not, want to know. I told myself it was ok that I didn't pass but deep down, I knew I would be very disappointed. I mean I had studied HARD for that test and had been waiting 2 years (because they recommend 2 years of experience before you take it) to get this credential. I had wanted it since my internship! I texted Mark and he talked to me as I drove home to distract my thoughts and I told him I would prefer to open the envelope on my own and then call him after I had read it because I would need a few minutes to digest the disappointing news. Well...I got to my mailbox and the letter was on top so I sat in my car as Mark continued to talk (he had no idea I had gotten my mail) and decided to open it right there in my car. I carefully tore it open and literally squinting I pulled out the first slip of paper with a numerical breakdown of the questions I got right for certain categories. Ok blah blah blah. Did I pass or fail? I hardly looked at it as I slowly pulled out the folded paper and prepared for the worst. 

And then I screamed, "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I PASSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! MARK I PASSED MY TEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" He thought I had gotten into an accident, and understandably so because I completely interrupted his sentence and started screaming, and then I repeated (aka screamed again) that I had passed!!!!!! I hung up, rushed to my apartment, awkwardly skipped/ran up my steps and called Mark immediately to read the letter, because all I cared about was the "congratulations" part and hadn't read the rest of it. YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have to tell you, it was thrilling writing new orders on Tuesday and signing my name RD, LD, CNSC! YAH BUDDY!!!!

That same day I had another WONDERFUL piece of mail: a drawing from my niece. My heart pretty much melted!

And then, to top of this month, my beloved Red Sox WON THE WORLD SERIES IN BOSTON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I stayed up to watch the entire game and could not have been happier!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've even successfully converted Mark to a (secondary) Red Sox fan (his loyalty is to the Texas Rangers). Excellent! 

See? October was a superb month. AND! Tomorrow, weather permitting, I may be going for a spin in this...
Picture from here
...and then going horseback riding with some friends. A grand way to begin November. 

And!!!! Now I can now say I am getting married next month! 

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