A Good Christmas

I just wanted to say that I had a very sweet Christmas with my dear families. I so enjoyed my Galbo family coming to CO to see me! It was so wonderful for them to come make the drive(and flight) to Denver. I hope it's not so far of a journey one of these days! I also enjoyed Christmas dinner with the Hunts and some Browns. I always love going to Greeley to catch up with them. It was also wonderful to have my two families together for Christmas dinner.

I can't really express how blessed I am to be a part of two very wonderful, kind, loving, and flexible families. Thanks to both of you for loving my husband and I and investing your lives in us!


Fav of the Week

This is a new tradition that I hope to start. Each week I hope to post about one favorite thing, event, etc for the past week. This week's fav is pretty trivial, but hey: Splenda with 1 g of fiber in every packet is pretty cool. Fight cholesterol and stay healthy while consuming a sugar like substance that has no calories... hard to beat. I definitely recommend.

PS- My family comes in 1 week!


Our Afghani Family

We have been cultural mentors to another family since about October. This family is from Afghanistan. It is a much different experience than with our family from Burma because the Father, Mother, and two oldest girls can speak English. The rest of the family is coming along well with their English also. They are incredibly hospitable, similar to nearly every family I have met from a non-Western culture. We Americans have a lot to learn!!! They are such a sweet family and I really enjoy visiting them. Here are two pictures from when we had them over to dinner at our house.

New Dog!?

Alan and I having been wanting a friend for Nigel for a while now... so yesterday we decided to take a trip to one of the local shelters and see if there was a dog that might be a good match for us. We found Timber, a 1 1/2 year old Labradoodle. They are a well matching pair. Although, they aren't quite getting along yet. I also might be a little allergic, so it's still a tryout, but Timber is a cute fella. Not too hyper and has some training. He still has a lot to learn and has a lot of energy.


Timber and Nigel on their beds in the same position

The pair


Water for Christmas

Just imagine walking miles to gather dirty water everyday. That's reality for millions of people. Visit water4christmas.com to learn more about how to help. Water4Christmas is trying to get people to donate $10 on Fridays. All of the money goes directly to building wells. $20 gives one person clean drinking water for 20 years. Think about it. What could you give for Christmas?


Long awaited remodel

So... when we moved into our house a year and a half ago, I vigorously took to ripping old wallpaper out and improving the cosmetics of each room. I eagerly attacked our small half bath, which was decorated with metallic silver wallpaper. However, I did not know what I was getting myself into. Surprisingly the wallpaper tore off the walls with ease. But, this was due to the fact that there were 2 layers of paint, another layer of wallpaper, and a border underneath. This happened to be a little overwhelming and thus the little half bath has remained neglected... UNTIL NOW...

Midstage- all the wallpaper gone, just working on the last of the paint.


The final product! A cottage bath!


My family...

... is coming for Christmas!

Yay! I just found out a couple days ago that my family is coming to Denver for Christmas. I'm so excited because I don't get any days off for Thanksgiving or Christmas except the days of. There really is no better gift than being near your family during the holidays. I'm such a nerd, but since I found out I've been motivated to fix up my house some and look up good recipes and plan for things to do. So anyway... family you are giving me the best Christmas gift you could... YOU!


life lately

Life lately has been busy but good. I should have posted a long time ago, but have kind of been holding off because I was waiting for a good pic of my new haircut. Alas, I settled for one of those hold the camera out in front of you so you look a little weird and not your best pictures. But, maybe it will kind of get the jist. Hopefully I will get a good one up this weekend when my dear husband will be around to take it.

Anyways, life is good. I really like working in Acute care. I love the "medicalness" of the patients, as all of them are in the hospital for some medical reason or another. My job as a PT in this setting is to assess their mobility, assess where they should be discharged to, and help them meet their goals to go home or to another facility. It is great to get home at the end of the day and have energy to do other things, even if my body is tired from running all over the 10 floors of hospital. It is just nice to see myself in a setting that I feel like I could work in and really enjoy.

Another thing I have been thinking, pondering lately (similar to other thinkings and ponderings I have) are how juxtaposed my desires are. On one hand I want to fight injustice and live simply and serve God whole heartedly. However, I find myself being jealous of those who have more than me or wanting things I don't need or being wasteful or turning to myself of others for strength. It is strange to me that I have this battle constantly going on in my mind. I know this is the fate of the Christian to live with Spirit battling flesh. I just long for my thoughts to become actions and for doing the right thing to become more natural. I want to not want material things. But I do. I don't know how much wanting is okay. Is it okay to want things you don't need? Is it okay to ask for things you don't need? I'm not sure and I'm wrestling through this. God give me your wisdom.


The End of Classwork

So, after almost 20 years of classwork and homework and studying for tests, I am finally done! I still have 6 months of clinical work before entering the "real world," but I am done with the classwork portion of my program! I took my comprehensive exam (the one over everything I've learned in the past two years) and will find out in about 3 weeks whether I passed or if I will have to take it again. In the mean time I am enjoying not studying and doing fun things like yard work (I really like working in the yard!), going to the zoo, spending time with Al, putting our house back together, and getting to know the new family that we are cultural mentors for. I know that it will be an adjustment to working 40 hours a week, but I'm exciting to own my free time again! Think about me as I search through this career and make big decisions about what direction to take and where to get a job. Alan and I are entering a new phase in life and excited about all it may hold!



I went up to Echo Lake and Devil's Hole (a hiking trail close to Echo Lake) with Sarah, Allie, and Jolee. Here are some pics from the trip. (compliments to Allie and Sarah)



In an attempt to renew our passion for running (or just simply get ourselves to do it), Nicole and I signed up for the Panerathon 10K. Alan even decided to run the 5K at the last minute. Although we did not quite reach the glory of our college days- a full marathon and half marathon, we did finish the race and were able to sprint in. Don't get me wrong- many people finished ahead of us. We did have several health set backs during training, so we were happy to finish and feel well. Hopefully this race was the start to renewed running habit. Enjoy the pics!


I think I like Peds

Today, in my pediatric physical therapy class, we had a ball lab. About 6 infants/children came to our class and we worked on postural adjustments and initiating controlled movement with them. It was really fun. I think I could get used to peds. Maybe I'm starting to figure out what I want to do? At least I had an enjoyable morning!


So cute!

Mu Leh had her baby! We've been waiting for a while and baby Jonah is finally here. Mu Leh and her family are friends we have made through being their cultural mentors after moving here from Burma. I got to visit her in the hospital last night and brought the beautiful pair home from the hospital this afternoon. It was so cute to bring them home. We Tong and A Tu were so excited and playing with little Jonah.

I must say that this experience isn't good for my "baby blues" as Jonah is so good and SO cute. Although it was really challenging to figure out how to attach the carseat and get baby Jonah into the carseat. I'm very glad that Alan was there to help me. Ahh... I guess we will wait a few more years.


Sad Day

My third clinical rotation just got cancelled :(. I was soo excited about it too. I now get to go to a nursing home instead! (can you sense my sarcasm). Oh well, I know that all things are worked to my good, so hopefully the disappointment passes soon.


My Last "Semester"

So, I have officially started my last "semester" of classes for PT school! (applause- or rather the Hallelujah chorus breaks out at this point- haha). I have 6 weeks tomorrow until I have finished all of my classroom work for the program and taken my competency exam. Let me just say- 20 years with no break from school makes this a happy thought!

After finishing my classroom work, I will head out to the semi-real world to finish up my clinical rotations. From mid-October to early January, I will be working at Swedish hospital doing acute and subacute orthopedic and neurological rehabilitation. Then from early January to early March, I will be working in the Aurora Public Schools working with children with disabilities. Finally, in mid-March through mid-April I will be working with physical therapists in Ethiopia doing pediatric and community-based rehabilitation in Addis Abbaba, as well as some basic service work in Yetabon at Project Mercy. Then 2 1/2 weeks to graduation!!!!!!

After graduation I will have to take the licensure exam so that I can be an official PT. (hopefully at this point I will already have a job waiting for me- God willing).

Well, I'm not sure how interested you all were in a timeline of my life until June, but I'm sure excited about getting done with school and all the experiences that will occur along the way.


Hiking at Petit Jean

Alan and I spent the day at a state park near my house called Petit Jean. We had a lot of fun hiking to the waterfall and climbing around on rock formations. It is so nice to just hang out before the madness of school starts again.

On another note, we are really enjoying our stay in russellville and spending time with my family. We'll be back in denver on thursday the 28th.


Treasure Hunt

So, I guess Real Simple agrees at the name our friends have so affectionately given to our unconceived first child. We will have to have a "treasure hunt" party regardless of the name someday just for fun! Hope you all appreciate this!


Yes, it is raining here. And, it's about 65º. I love the sunshine of Colorado, but sometimes after 300 days of sunshine, you just like a few clouds and showers. So, I'm just chilling today with my blanket watching, the olympics, and enjoying the weather.

Ahhh... nothing like a rainy, lazy day.


Friends Reunion- Guanella Pass hiking

So, every year we try to plan a friends reunion where as many college friends as possible meet and hang out for a weekend. This year we are lucky because many of our friends have migrated to the Denver area in the past two years. It was funny because the only people from out of state were Megan (from China) and Colby (from AR). We were sad that Paul and Bethany couldn't make it from KS, but we're excited that they are coming next week. Here are some pics from a hiking trip we took. ( we did lots of other fun things, but if you know me, you know I'm horrible at taking pics. I might try to steal some from someone else).

Here we are just starting out...

Cute pic of the girls by a stream...

Me and Al (and Nigel) by the stream...

More by the stream...

Nicole and Eric crossing the stream...

Heading out...

When Steven visited (Brainard Lake Trip)

Here are some pics from back in July when our friend Steven from college came to visit. We went up to Brainard Lake (one of our favorite hiking locations) for the day. Enjoy the pics:


Projects- The joy of being a homeowner

So... I am super excited about the projects we have going on (building a brick patio and getting a new privacy fence)! We have maybe bitten off a little much, but Al is doing a great job with all the projects and I help when I can. Some of the pics are from premade privacy fence panels that had paint on one side that we had to powerwash off. Hopefully pics soon of a complete fence!