Meg Joins the Navy

A new member of the Navy Nurse Corps and a proud wife of a Navy corpsman stationed together at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

29 February 2012

Sailor's Training in a Field

Well it's been 11 days that my sailor has been out in a field training before deployment, sleeping on the cold, hard ground, eating MRE's, and kicking some butt during the day.  9 days to go till he's back in a bed and can take a shower!  I've been able to have 2 quick phone calls in those 11 days, finding out he's been sick since he got there :(  It's a little more difficult than him being away this time last year at basic training because at least then I could write letters, but at least this time I've been through it already.  No mail for him there, out in some field.  Although I do randomly send texts or leave voicemails or an email because there's so many things I want to talk about when he's gone!  I feel helpless because I just want to throw together a package for him with those damn granola bars he loves, a ton of fruit snacks, and some hand warmers so he'd know I'm thinking about him all day.

Luckily, I've been super busy with school, having my first day off since the 1st full day he was gone today.  Staying busy has been my way of dealing with not having him on the phone after 9 for a conversation, or going to bed early.  I can say, although my days have been long (four 12 hour clinical days, plus days full of class or homework), I made it through without a ton of caffeine because I've been going to bed at like 9:30 since I don't get to talk to him at night.  I'd much rather talk to him though ;)

So 9 days left till he's back from the field and 9 days until my spring break starts!  That's pretty good timing and a good break from the 1st half of the semester.

How I picture field training, probably way off!

24 February 2012

It's Official, I'm Grown-Up. I Appreciate my Mother.

Senior year of college.  I can officially say I have grown into the relationship with my mother that I love her, I need her guidance, we can talk about life and relationships and work, and I appreciate her.

I wouldn't say my mom and I had the mother-daughter feuds in high school that some mother-daughter pairs go through with rebellion and screaming at each other, calling each other names.  I definitely saw that and still do with people my age, but we did have our arguments over the years and times when I would not talk to her or she annoyed the hell out of me.  OK, there are times she still does and I know there are arguments to come still.  But over the past year I can see the change in our relationship that has happened as I've matured.  I am so very excited to graduate, move out on my own, start my career, travel the country and world, but a small part inside of me is thinking, "Can't I take her along?"  My mom and I do a lot together that I didn't notice until I got a Twitter and it's always, "Watching a movie with mom, Mom's cooking dinner.. yummm :), out shopping with Mom, Dinner with Mom, running errands with Mom"

Although I live on campus during the school year, this semester I spend more time at home because the hospital I'm working in is 20 minutes vs. 1 hour distance.  Maybe it's the few months I know we have left together as solely the two of us together sharing the same address that makes me realize.... damn it, what am I going to do without her?  My 22 year old self doesn't know how to make BBQ chicken or mashed potatoes the way she does!  What if I need to cry, who's going to sit there and hug me and know exactly what I need to hear to feel better because she's been doing it for years?

This is when I realize that I finally can say I appreciate my mother, who she is, what she has done for me, all I've put her through, that she is her own person, and the role she plays in my life.

Thanks Mom!  I love you!

17 February 2012

My Grandmother's Christmas Sugar Cookies

My Grandmother has a famous recipe in my family that I have taken over making every Christmas for the past few years.  They are a huge hit at every family & friend Christmas and with my sailor, who actually found a bag of them after like 5 months of sitting in his locker back in high school and still ate them! I am going to share the legendary recipe with you!

Cookie Ingredients:
1 cup margarine
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
3 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp baking soda

Icing Ingredients:
(you HAVE to make them with this icing because it is what makes them so irresistable!)
2 cups confectionary sugar
1/4 cup margarine
1 tsp. vanilla extract
food coloring


I tripled the recipe this year because I need to make A LOT of cookies so that's why my pictures contain such an outrageous amount of butter.

1.  Combine all the wet ingredients together, melting the butter.
2.  Combine all the dry ingredients together.
3.  Combine it all!
4.  Chill for at least one hour.
5.  Roll out the dough (not too thin!)
6.  Cut with fun cookie cutters, according to holiday or season ;)
7.  Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes, depending on thickness of dough.  I usually like my cookies to look like they might be a little underdone and barely browned on the edges because they're softer.
I've gotten quite used to an assembly line of cooking making after doing this for quite a lot of Christmases.  Cooling/drying racks are one of the best inventions ever.
When all your cookies are finished baking, which when tripling the recipe to make like 100 cookies can be a tiring process, I usually leave frosting for the next day.

8.  Combine all the frosting ingredients, melting the butter.  Add confectionary sugar/milk to get the right consistency.  It will be a little on the liquid side at first but leave it sit for a half hour or so and it'll thicken up and you can add more milk if needed.


12 February 2012

The Times are Stressful

Life is stressful.  Luckily, someone invented post-its to remind me how to get through the hard times.

His plans for you are good, though they may look different than you expected.  Rest in the knowledge that God uses every circumstance to strengthen your faith in Him.

Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble? Job 2:10

For he wounds, but he also binds up; He injures, but His hands also heal. Job 5:18
I will fear no evil, for you are with me.  Psalm 23:4

The most important thing to have is HOPE.  Believing in even the possibility of a happy ending is a very powerful thing.
Faith & Sweat, keys to success.

Finish each day and be done with it.  You have done what you could.  Some blinders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can.  Tomorrow is a new day.  You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.  Emerson

07 February 2012

Fun with Nursing

Finally after almost 4 years of schooling, my nursing clinicals are actually fun and I don't dread going or fearing that I'll hate nursing all my life.  In my unnamed clinical site for my practicum (kind of like a nursing internship arranged through the school... of course, unpaid) I have done so many cool things in the Emergency Department that reminds me of why I enjoy nursing, the kind of nursing involving blood, guts, gore, broken bones, and gross things that would cause a lot of people to faint if they saw.

I've been there for a little over 20 hours and I cannot count the number of people I have drawn blood from, put in IVs, assessed, triaged, done ECGs on, medications, shots, and so much more!  And today I saw my first dead body!  I am having the time of my life there.  After a 12 hour shift on a Sunday, I was kind of upset to leave because the Superbowl was starting and I wanted to stay the next 12 hour shift to see all the lovely disasters that would come walking, hopping, wheeled, or carried into the ED from the football festivities.

I finally feel like a nurse!  It's taken a lot of hours at the hospital, studying, headaches, alcoholic beverages, stress, tears, prayers, and some anxiety attacks but so worth it all.  I also feel so lucky when my classmates talk about not having jobs lined up for after graduation because a lot of places don't want to hire new grads that I have a wonderful career, not just job, awaiting me in the Navy.  I cannot wait to get started!  (And to not have someone watching me over my back all day long.)  I wore the unit's color scrubs instead of my school uniform last clinical and it's amazing how different nurses, techs, doctors, and patients treat you.  It was great.

I also had a teenage Army guy come in who kept calling me ma'am, definitely something I'm going to have to get used to!  But, not going to lie, I like it :)

02 February 2012

Things I Love...

I started making a list of things I love and things I hate a while back, and it actually ended up teaching me A LOT about myself, and things to avoid or add to my life to make it better with the little things.  I add to the list as things occur or I think of them.  Some have changed over the years as well.

So here's the list of things I love....

H2O packets, getting ready for a night out, dry-erase boards, skinny jeans, when boys dress up, scarves, long necklaces, free college games, dresses, flats, the beginning of sandal weather, Mario Party, the new nervousness around a cute boy, taking care of people, making food, people enjoying the food I make, waking up to the sun, painting, making greeting cards, knitting, positive responses to things I've made, pearls, peeing clear, a good workout, juice, milk, hugs, purses, shoes, dancing, driving, exploring, my hair growing, glasses, doing laundry, boys in collared shirts, when I get along with my family, polka dots, cheetah and zebra print, tigers, koalas, chap stick, lip gloss, when teachers relate the material to my interests, watching a good movie, socks, colored eyeliner, porch swings, the sound of crickets, surprises, being organized, hearts, living independently, toddlers, boxers, hanging out during baseball games, high school football, high school spirit, Disney World, getting Disney characters autographs, camisoles, charms, rhinestones, diamonds, sparkly things, strawberry milk, chocolate milk, fresh orange juice, strawberry flavored things, Jello cheesecake, my uncle's jokes, hot tea, hot chocolate, chips and dip, steak, windows, hot tubs, the first warm day of spring, perfectly shaved legs, candles, playing with fire, my charm bracelet, sunflowers, Disney soundtracks, the black market, wearing my dad's old XL t-shirts, the first day of summer vacation, graduation parties, the Outer Banks, sun tans, crab legs, Harry Potter, Dramamine, foreign money, King of Prussia mall, picking out outfits for school, Jalapeno Cheddar chip dip, Panera Bread, blueberry bagels, blueberry muffins, free Clinique bags, strawberry pancake syrup, the first fall day, caramel candies, the smell of pies, decorating t-shirts, fabric paint, Halloween costumes, "thank you"'s from trick or treaters, naughty text messages, Vicadin after wisdom teeth removal, coming home after being away, warm houses in the winter, being kissed on the neck and ear, singing in the car at nights, boob cups, my aunt Helen's house, my grandmother's house, Long John Silver's, buying stuff for college, planning food for parties, driving when it's snowing, holding hands, sex, Twilight, Marilyn Monroe, Joann Fabrics, warm applesauce with cinnamon, cooking, crossing things off my To Do list, making lists, Star Wars, reading, drawing blood, Vera Bradley, walking on the beach, boardwalks, Verdi, Pinterst, puppies, kittens, food

And of course, the obvious, my sailor, family & friends!

So go make your list and see what you can think of and add more of to your life!