Saturday, September 22, 2012

Tomorrow! Tomorrow!

Remember that one time that I blogged two days in a row?? Yeah me either... 
Um I am leaving for Uganda in less than 24 hours! I am excited and nervous and excited and a little anxious and I kind of feel like I might throw up and I'm just a little bit excited!!! 

But first - my dear friend Becky Daye who blogs over at Daye by Daye (she has slightly better content then I, and she blogs just a little more often...) has nominated me for the Liebster Award! And I will steal her explanation of Liebster: It is German for the sweetest, dearest, nicest, kindest, beloved, lovely, kind pleasant, valued, cute, endearing and welcoming... I don't know if I'd use those words to describe myself but I'll strive for at least two... I really wanted to blog about this and include some of you but I know myself better than most people and I know that it will take me a million years to complete this post because I'll want to take my time and make sure I sound smart and witty and try to bring a smirk to your face - but considering the only caffeine I've had today is the exedrin I took a couple hours ago I just don't think it's going to happen... SO please please wait two weeks until I am back in the country so that I may properly accept this blogger award from my sweet sweet friend!

I was going to take the time and blog about the award today - but my very good friend - my first friend in New York three years ago moved back to her home of Ohio today.. I've loved watching her sweet girls grow over the past year, and having a friend that I could show up to her house un-announced, and never had to worry what came out of my mouth, or worry about how I looked - which to me = true friendship! I will miss her oh so very much and her little family that I got to watch grow!

Me, Lauren, Beth = best friends forever

 we also had a Tucker family fun day with the hubs, puppy, and I since I will be away from all my boys for two whole weeks! Instead of our usual day in the city, I really wanted to include the puppy since he'll be alone and we usually spend all day every day together (sad face) so we tried something new and traveled over to Bear Mountain. Which is almost an hour from us but a beautiful place to hike, and the puppy could join us! Doogie isn't really into nature or the outdoors and I think he likes when we're all gone because no one is around to bother him... As long as we're home in time to feed him dinner... Anywho - we had a fun time, and could not have asked for better weather - BUT no one said there were lots and lots of stone stairs... hello bum workout! 

Tucker family fun day!!!

A thirsty puppy... who knows how to drink out of a water bottle like a real person...

We leave tomorrow from JFK at 430pm - now I don't usually stress about things... I'm very laid back and go with the flow.. but I'm also not exactly the most organized person in the world (you're surprised by this I know) so when I tell you I waited until the last minute to finalize my packing... I waited until the very last minute! We were approved to check three bags since we're doing a mission trip - and I thought oh perfect I'm going to have SO MUCH ROOM - but when I tell you that somehow 50 more lbs showed up out of no where.. it came from no where! So I have spent the past two days rearranging and re-packing trying to get all three bags to be 50#'s ... and it has been really hard for me! But I was finally able to do it! AND since I'm so organized my poor team leader does not have my finalized packing list... I blame the night shift... always. 

I'm ready!!

I am finally put together enough that I could sit down and tell y'all all about it! I was reading in 1 Samuel the other day and came across 1 Samuel 12:16 which I thought spoke so well of the opportunity I am about to embark on. It says:

Now then, stand still and see this great thing the Lord is about to do before your eyes

I pray that I will not be distracted by things like - do I have enough skirts? what is the hubs going to be doing for two weeks - that I will be still and soak in what He has to show me and teach me. I know that Africa is obviously not all roses but I fully plan on seeing the great things that He will do in me and through me, in our group, in the staff, in the children... It's going to be so awesome, because we serve an awesome God!! Uganda here we come!

I am not going to have a whole lot of access to the inter-webs unless I plan on paying out the wazoo for it SO it may come as a surprise to you but I probably won't be blogging for the next two weeks..BUT I can't wait to share with you all when I get back!!

Also, should you like to be included in an email update list or be updated via facebook you can look to the right hand column and email me or follow me on facebook and the hubs will keep up!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Tuesday Tangents

Today, the puppy and I were extremely lazy.. Like everything else - I blame the night shift schedule.. I slept until 4:30pm Monday.. talk about a labor day.. then I slept from 1am-5:30am and then napped from 1pm - 4pm... Maybe tonight I'll sleep a real good 8 hours! We'll keep our fingers crossed!

For today.. I'm borrowing from this girl because I thought I'd share some randoms with you! And I needed something semi-interesting to name my post...

Tangent: adj; almost irrelevant <-- like most posts around here... 
(definition found from the World English dictionary on dictionary.com)

So...

1. I joined a new gym... I am a gym slut.. I was a member at LA Fitness and I really did like it there and it helped that it was super cheap compared to all the other gyms in our area.. But you see I love classes - I love spinning, I love the total body fitness classes... I don't like step (I so cannot coordinate my arms and feet to do things at the same time) and I don't like zumba (white girl so doesn't have moves) BUT most other classes I really enjoy and feel like I get more out of it then if I try to do weights myself.. But the fun at LA Fitness didn't last... so I joined New York Sports Club which is pretty fancy.. and I joined for the classes! And it's not too terrible when you have the membership at one gym instead of access to all their gyms. Anywho, I'm only a few weeks in, but I am loving it! And it almost seems like more of a community - which is the type of gym that I was looking for! A majority of the people that you see, you see every week in the same class and I like that! Except today the air wasn't working... I did a total body class and spinning in humid rooms with no air.. not exactly my idea of a good time - but maybe I burned off the ice cream I had for dessert last night the cookies that I'm having tonight.. OR the Asiago bagel I had for breakfast.. Have I mentioned I LOVE food!?

2. I have bought a lot of stuff for my trip.. like a lot. Mainly because when I tell you that I live in scrubs and nike tempos/tshirts - it is no lie... People are always like oh did you just work out? And I'm like no... this is literally my wardrobe. The hubs clothes take up about 70% of our closet and then clothes I wear to church and the occasional dinner that I can't wear a t shirt to are what the rest of my wardrobe consists of... which isn't much.. and its so not culturally sensitive.. But my favorite thing so far is not the clothes that I've had to buy BUT a notebook that I ordered from Minted to journal in while I'm there! I don't necessarily consider myself a journaler/writer.. but I do keep this little blog thing on my little corner of the inter webs... so I guess I kind of think of this as a journal.


I was able to customize it with my name on the front and my favorite picture of the hubs and I at the moment with one of my favorite verses right now! I do wish that it could have been purple because that is my favorite color BUT I think it turned out really nice with the brown and blues and greens! The verse that I have on the inside cover is 1 Corinthians 13: 1-7 in The Message translation -

If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don't love, I'm nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate. If I speak God's work with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, "Jump," and it jumps, but I don't love, I'm nothing. If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don't love, I've gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I'm bankrupt without love. 

3. The puppy and I started puppy classes at PetSmart last week. We will go through six weeks of rigorous training... learning the basics... our biggest issues are leash walking (which is completely our fault) because we never ever put him on a leash for walks, we run around the back yard and go to the dog park.. never needing a leash. BUT I need a running buddy and he happens to be the most convenient partner for me... he's awake when I am and he sleeps when I sleep - its a win/win for everyone! we're also working on our fear of people.. yes that's right - if you've had the pleasure of meeting our ridiculous mutt then you know that he is not the big golden retriever type that is going to sit down and lick you and let you love on him... he's going to bark and bark and bark and oh yeah bark some more because for some reason people besides our family (that he rarely sees but they still don't phase him..) - people besides our family seems to make him very skiddish... our first night of puppy school was spent shaking with our ears back and tail between our legs refusing any treat offered to him... Ridiculous. We'll try try again this week!

4. In an effort to blog more often and because I really like the idea of sharing what I'm thankful for - I have big plans (don't the best laid plans always go awry..) to link with Mandie Joy.. I found her blog by perusing a bunch of other blogs.. then I spent most of yesterday and this morning reading through her archives because um hello talk about inspiring story - she moved to Uganda to be a nurse and train other Ugandan nurses in a new hospital which led to her living there for well over a year being a transition mommy to little babies waiting for their forever family. I laughed, I cried.. I wondered if I could pack my bags and the hubs could follow me over there... Amazing. Check it out yourself. But she has posts called Capture Gratitude - where she shares any myriad of things she is thankful for that week... In an effort to be more grateful for what I have in this life and not want for silly things (even though sometimes I am seriously ecstatic over a great cup of coffee..) I'd like to join her... and I would love for you all to join me!! Via a comment or your own blog post!
(I obviously have no original ideas.. but thanks to these other awesome blogs for allowing link ups and sharing their awesome ideas with my boring tired brain!)

And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. ~Colossians 3:17

I do plan to share some more fun little things that I've gotten for my trip! Also any tips/tidbits you all may have about traveling overseas in general are so welcome! Seeing as how this will be my first time out of the country... I think that there will be a neon green sign above my head that is blinking TOURIST!!!! So anything you can tell me to make that sign a little smaller and maybe not so bright.. 

Monday, September 3, 2012

18 days!

Somehow I let the month of August just slip away... that always seems to happen to me... but thats okay. I've been working like a crazy person and sleeping just as much! BUT tonight I was able to have holiday time! Which on a holiday - is absolutely unheard of... so basically I'm getting paid to stay at home tonight! Wahoo!

Remember way back in January when I first signed up for my trip to Uganda!? Well, y'all - it is 18 days away!! I have been preparing.. collecting supplies and making sure I have what I need to bring with me... and we are now less than three weeks away from departure! 

My living room has looked like this..

That poor puppy doesn't even know what's about to happen to his life for two whole weeks!

I have lists after lists made...

supplies collected!

To do list! 

I think I'm almost ready! We have our last group meeting this week! eeks! My stress dreams have already started - dreams that I forget to pack shoes... dreams that I've left my passport at home... dreams that I forgot my stethoscope... Stupid things - things that I will now triple check to make sure that I remember them! I am a little nervous and fearful about small things and different situations but I know that our God is so much bigger than my nerves and my fears... and I know that my fears and concerns are not coming from Him they are coming from a dark place that Satan sits in and just tosses out and watches and waits for my reactions... I refuse to give him the satisfaction. 

Culturally I think I might just fit right in to their laid back - come what may life style... As a group we were asked to read the book Foreign to Familiar by Sarah Lanier - which is a short book whose main purpose is to introduce us to hot vs. cold climates. And if you don't know the difference, can I just say that I really needed this book before I moved to New York the first time!? Talk about an eye opener. As I was reading I found myself shaking my head to most of the book - it was very fitting and described the way that a southern transplant might feel after a move to the northeast! The main difference is that hot climates are relationship driven while cold climates are task driven. It was a good book and description to different cultures and how we all respond differently to different situations. (how many times can one person use the word different in one sentence!?)

I am being drawn to pictures on Facebook that people I know (also people that I know by association...) have posted of trips they've taken in the past as well as recent trips to Africa and soaking up every detail and hoping that they will stick with me - and finding blog after blog of long term missions and short term missions and all the pictures they've taken, the stories that they have to share - the people they've met along the way. To say that Africa.. Uganda... is on my mind 90% of the time would be an understatement. I'm not sure I've said it yet... or at least a million times... but I am excited! I am excited about my own growth as much as I am to share my nursing knowledge with others... what little that I have... and I am kind of excited and interested to live and interact with a culture where we aren't glued to the television and our iphones and checking the Facebook every 10 min.. oh wait, that might just be me... But God is so good and he has provided every step of the way for this trip and I can't wait to meet the rest of our group in person in Amsterdam! And I hope that I am fully prepared to see and to learn that this is not at all about me.. its not all about what I will learn, or how I will grow in my faith, or what I can teach others (me, me, me...) it is about Him and spreading His glory to all the peoples of the earth and helping my brothers and sisters in Christ... 

For He will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help. He will take pity on the weak and the needy and save the needy from death. He will rescue them from oppression and violence, for precious is their blood in His sight. ~ Psalm 72: 12-14