3.17.2010

ch-ch-ch-changes around the chaloner household.

IMG_4231

…and Yorick makes three.

testing, 1,2…anyone still tuned in to this little page? 
What do you say, time for a little reunion?

11.03.2009

we interrupt this blog for…IMG_3251

dinners out. dinners in. football season. bridal showers. little shop of horrors. 26 and 27th birthday celebrations. shopping and decorating. weddings for family. weddings for friends. petroleum club. the state fair. movies. visitors in town. the zoo. the plaza district festival. more visitors in town. hot tubs. dogs. pedicures. U2. um, U2 four rows from the stage. pumpkin cheesecake. bar and lounge. bike riding. parties. not having surgery after all. fall nights. fall leaves. cozy fireplace. baylor homecoming. bonfire. old friends. death of a vw. sweeney todd at the lyric. finding out that I passed my board exams!

10.02.2009

such great heights.

So, I put on jeans for the first time in months.

{this is not significant because of the changing fall weather.}
This was delightful because it meant I was wearing something other than “work clothes” or pajamas, or ‘study sweats’. It meant I was going ‘out’…out to meet an old college roomie, out to Cuppies-and-Joe, out on the town with my husband. Out with plans.

Back to the land of the living, as my mother would say.
Let’s not take this free time for granted, shall we?
It’s amazing how much ‘time’ there is now, when you have waking hours that don’t involve study + work {or + anything else, but feeling really stressed and guilty because I’m wasn’t doing the former}. The old adage of realizing something’s value when it’s been stripped away.

I’ve already used by newfound free time for good… cooking, baking up a delicious treat for my birthday boy (Velvet Devil’s Food Cake with coffee buttercream frosting from Cooks Illustrated}, planting flowers and decorating for fall, catching up with family, visiting the state fair, planning a bridal shower, shopping til I drop, cleaning {yes, this is even a luxury.}, enjoying our houseguests--especially Griffin--this week, throwing myself shamelessly into fall season premieres, planning a hiking trip-slash-zoo trip-slash-plaza district festival for this weekend, and just enjoying the freedom.

The test, you ask?

Well, we all agree it was just weird. I think I did okay, I think I probably passed. But, with that kind of test, you just really wouldn’t be too surprised either way. It was unpredictable in that it was very psychosocial/counseling based. Situation X, what would you say/do next? Those are so subjective, and often not well written. Not that that isn’t a part of our training and our profession, it’s just a difficult skill to assess on a multiple choice exam. It was disappointing, and frustrating, and didn’t feel like the best assessment of my skills as a GC. On the upside, I don’t feel like there was anything I would have really done differently to prepare. I felt very capable and confident with the material that I knew, but felt a little let down that the questions didn’t dig very deep in the science. Regardless of what happens, I feel “better for it” after studying so hard these last few months, even if some of it was overkill. This is the first year to test out this new format. So, we were little test subjects, with no way to anticipate what those long four hours would be like. The same sentiments are shared across the board, and from what I gather, across the country as well. We’re all sitting in the same boat, just waiting for our scores. Hoping we’ll be able to place those three little letters after our title, and moreso I think just hoping we won’t have to endure another summer at the books.

Oh well, for now…it’s OVER.

and how have you been?

9.19.2009

motivator0fff37d10aec838622b9b51b2c89088457d49171

9.16.2009

Wish list.

930084_009_bLet’s pretend that I was going to buy myself a reward for studying my bum off for this exam next week…

well then, I think I’ve found the object of my affection.

It’s probably way flattering, no?

It’s probably 178$, no?

It reminds me of our wedding. black + white + green. I saw it in anthropologie with Carly and thought it would have made an awesome bridesmaid dress.

with that price-tag, all hard-working aside, It’s going to have to stay on its mannequin.

maybe if I PASS my exam?

well, maybe I’ll add it to my ebay-search-list {for those of you who don’t know, you can snag a lot of great new-with-tags clothes from just holding out a few months after they hit stores.} Let’s hope this little gem finds it way on there soon.

9.02.2009

swedish rock band, Europe's, popular 1986 hit.

Things I’m looking forward to:

  • Veg Fest 09. (must out-do Veg fest ’08) – to kick off the night that I take boards.
    {Veg fest means Aaron and I ‘veg out’…lounge around on the couch, watching movies, ordering pizza. enjoying some red vino. It means we turn off our phones, we can’t do any chores, pay any bills, run any errands, or do ANYTHING that we do not want to do. It’s the ultimate indulgence.}
  • Cooking in my pretty, new kitchen.
  • seeing more of my friends and my family.
  • Planting flowers in our garden. Mom? Teresa? Help, please. maybe I'm not even supposed to plant this time of year. I don't even know that.
  • Shopping. {sigh}
  • Shopping for le house. Finally getting to do all the fun decorating, browsing, and even blog-stalking all the cute, creative interior design sites. And see the last few boxes sent out to the curb.
  • Planning our weekend away {celebrating birthdays + test completions}… we’ve tossed around going to a B & B winery in Texas? Or Silver Dollar City in Missouri?... what do you think, where should we go?
  • catching up with editing and uploading all my photos.
  • updating this little site for my ridiculous following. {cue laughter} no, really, but I have missed it.
  • Sitting. Just coming home, and relaxing. Sitting on our back patio, grilling out with Aaron, sitting in the hammock and {gasp} reading for fun.
  • Loving on my sweet husband who's been like mr. suzy homemaker this past month. cooking for me, cleaning (even the bathrooms people), shopping for groceries, taking care of every little thing so I could focus on studying. UH-mazing. I've never felt so appreciative, I think acts-of-service would definitely be my "love language".
  • celebrating our emancipation with the other lovely ladies going for the "C" in CGC. Hot tub parties, pedicures and champagne. oh yeah, we know the key to motivation is sweet rewards.
  • Living in ignorant bliss until November-December when we find out our scores.
  • Going down to Dallas to stay with Carly & Adam.
  • celebrating Julie's wedding in Lubbock.
  • Camping. ‘tis the season, right?
  • Baylor Homecoming …which is shaping up to be a possible class of ’05 reunion.
  • Bringing down the ‘fall d├ęcor’. {there’s a bunch!} Oh, how you pumpkins, leaves, oranges-browns-golds make me smile. And, now to have a cozy home as my canvas...?

I'll leave you with a little tease for fall. This shot was taken by my lovely friend Hannah. Always been one of my favorites. taken...where else? back in Tennessee. see you in a measley ol' 19 days. wish me luck.

8.16.2009

Emancipation.

Sept 22nd: Genetic counseling board exam in progress 9 am to 1 pm.
{my excused absense from blogging during this 2+ month hiatus}
With 25,000 genes in the human genome, you can imagine I've been a little preoccupied, no?

Here's to hoping your summer has been much more fun than mine!
{I can't complain though can I? ...the ultimate-study-break to Belize almost makes up for it.} Beautiful pictures and lots of stories to come when "free time" is reintroduced into my calendar.

I can't wait to catch up with all my long lost (read: closest} friends & family post test day. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this very hermit-y, even-worse-than-I-was about returning phone calls, selfish time.

Thank you, in advance, for all of your prayers.

7.15.2009

curb your enthusiasm.

Let the countdown begin….
We’re beach-bound in 8 days. Could we BE more ready for a vacation?
Don’t hate us, but.
This is the view from the window of the house we’re staying in. Holy Starfish.
I can’t stop looking at it… beautiful, peaceful, serene, relaxing.
I can't remember ever wanting to just take a 'break' more than this.
I can already feel the sand between my toes...

7.11.2009

this is us, playing house.

…you still with us?
We’re just getting settled in…and it. is. wonderful.
We have about 93% of the boxes unpacked, put away, and organized.
{nothing like having 3 visitors headed your way to spend a holiday weekend to get your butt-in-gear.}
We haven’t really done the “decorating” part yet, except for the obvious week of painting.
We’re just happy to let that kind of evolve, once September rolls around {after I take boards} I’ll have time for all that fun stuff. Instead of rushing it, I’ll just wait & let that be my reward!
But even without a lot of stuff everywhere, it’s so warm, comfortable, cozy. We really love it.
I know, I know, quit yapping about it and post some pictures already
But, until I get it all set up at least a little, I’d rather just wait for one big REVEAL! {you can tell that the only channel # I've committed to memory on our new satellite is HGTV.}
For my handful of faithful readers, the posts will probably be few & far between from now thru the GC board exams. But, you understand, sweet dears.
I DO have lots of photos from all the recent goings-on, lots of stories, and lessons–learned from our new dive into the pool of homeownership. But, they too, will just have to hang on.
So, I don’t have time to stick around. I have to study. And go seal the grout on our new tile floors. And stain the fence.
Ahh… welcome home.

6.20.2009

happy homeowners.

Moving day is tomorrow! We’re about to spend the last night in our little apartment, the place we called home for our first two crazy years of marriage. I thought I’d be more sad to ‘see it go’, but as soon as you start packing all your things away and stripping the walls of everything that made it ‘home’ to you, it slowly edges back to that blank canvas that we moved into. …and all the emotions get channeled into the excitement of moving into and creating our first house-home.
It’s been quite the wild ride this week – from closing on Monday, painting every night this week {we had some awesome help, thank you to Michael, Teresa, Melody, Kara, Corey, Julie, & Jay…we could not have been ready to move by Saturday without your fantastic painting skills!}
..we had some hiccups, like the mismatched ‘touch up’ paint can in the master bedroom {oh, man. But it’s fixed now.} and then our living room read ‘POOP’ where Aaron tested some paint colors and then the flat color we chose didn’t completely cover up the semi-gloss. Homeowners? Adults? You wouldn’t believe it. Well, it’s time to go close up the last few boxes, pause, and glance around the room with a reflective stare, recalling all the memories in a fast-forward film reel…

“I’m pooped”.

6.07.2009

productive weekend. indeed.

I thought this move might potentially be easier now that we weren't moving two {bachelor-and-bachelorette} apartments at the same time. No sir, I was wrong, now I know that any move post-wedding-showers trumps that.
How do people do this with kiddos and jobs? -and- out of more than 900 square feet?
Not pictured = other rooms with stacks of boxes, furniture, multiple trips to the dumpster, piles of yard-sale/donation items.

{speaking of which, a special thanks to the chaloners for allowing us to add some loot to their yard sale this weekend without actually being in attendance... we made an extra 150$ that'll be going toward paint and supplies for our new digs!}

...i think i can. i think i can.

6.04.2009

sigh.

As I sit here in a pile of clothes, bags, boxes, packing tape… I’m wondering how I was able to enjoy such a carefree weekend just days ago. They say ignorance is bliss, I suppose. Well my goofy grin reflects quite the absence of deep consideration and planning that now tangles up my thoughts. This is way more than I had bargained for. {And you know what an over-analyzer, think-it-all-througher I am. So, I already had a lot on the bargaining shelf…}

Well, the shelf broke from the sheer weight of it all.
So, now I sit in a pile of mess.
Literally, and figuratively. {the annoyance of packing, the hassle of moving, the exciting but time-consuming painting and decorating and shopping, and the stress of the approaching GC board exams closing in on me – that’s the big enjoyment-sucker in all of this --… all, after the chaotic day at my full-time job at the hospital}

I shouldn’t be complaining. This is what we wanted! A house, a home. For that I’m pumped, but secretly wishing the next month of my life away. And, practically, we weighed all of these things when making such an important decision in the first place, and decided it was worth it. It’s not the financial investment, for that, I feel comfortable and I’m proud {but of course, I had that little freak-out early on too.} …It’s the part in all of us that wishes for more hours in a day. It’s just a little overwhelming all things happening at once. I really am excited, I swear!

So, I continue in prayer. For my sanity. For my organization. For my patience. For my fatigue. For my wonderful husband. For my ear-infections in both ears… ok, enough. debbie downer stops now. Or, for now. :)

Now, let me take you back to an earlier, more relaxed time:
A Saturday afternoon at the amusement park spent riding rides, eating ridiculously unhealthy fare, watching the “talented” {ehm} performers, and enjoying the day together.
Not bad, considering the tickets were a mere 50 cents apiece.

The name of our local park is Frontier City. Now some folk say “Frawn-tier” and some say “Fruun-tier”. It’s a matter of opinion really.

It really is a great little park, fun rides & never really all that crowded.

Melody enjoying a snack before the ride… that amusement park food can get pretty pricey.
For this photo, my camera risked his little life.
Do you scream on roller-coasters? Hold your arms up high in the air? Pray that you don’t lose your churro?

Did you know that Six Flags is cutting back its employees? The first job cut was the ‘roller-coaster-photograph-screener’, whose job it was to keep inappropriate snapshots off of the viewing TVs. Seriously, that’s a job? I guess to some that could be really boring, or really exciting.A “splashing success”…
These two clowns got busted for crack-axling.
Closing out the day with a ride on the ferris wheel, Melody’s favorite part.

Well, our internet is kind of touch and go these days, not to mention we’ve got a big move coming up! So, while we’re away, know that we’ll be doing this for a while: Then, if all goes well, this on June 15th: Then we're installing this: And then doing lots of this:
Thanks both to Corey & Kara’s lovely housewarming gift packed with loads of painting goodies and also to all the ‘volunteers’ who’ve offered to lend a painting hand, we’re hoping it won’t take too terribly long.
…now if I could just pick out which colors? Any suggestions of do’s or don’ts much appreciated. [comment button below, hint hint.]

And, last but not least, this:
And then some settling in, grilling out, planting flowers, sitting on our back patio...

and then, just maybe, you might hear from us again.

5.30.2009

holy matrimony!

2 years ago since: Unbelievable.
and Incredible.
Standing up there on May 27, 2007 I could not have even imagined what an amazing man God had planned for me. {I thought I knew, but I'm continually, pleasantly surprised each and every day.} Lucky girl.

We were hoping that the second anniversary was 'wood'. {get it, a giant new home full of...}
But, it's not. It's cotton. oh, well. We're buying couches too. fluffy ones, chocked full of cotton.
Aaron made reservations for two at a cute little place down in the Paseo Arts District, a cute little strip lined with shops, restaurants, and art galleries. The food was incredible, I was expecting good food - but, let's be honest, the price-tag on a lot of fancy schmancy places covers the 'ambiance' but sometimes the menu falls short. Well, if you go and order the Chilean Sea Bass your taste buds will not be disappointed. It was the best meal I can remember in a long time. . .The table was even it's own little private dining area, they had silk curtains giving everyone their own little space. Tres chic. ...It was pricey, yes {but get your $25 gift certificate for $2 at restaurants.com} and you can splurge on the starters, the wine and chocolate cake!
They even brought us a special treat for our anniversary, such gracious hosts!

Highly recommended.

Happy Anniversary to my little goofball of 2 years!

5.29.2009

memorial memories.

It was a warm winters’ night…
So already this story can’t be true
.

Actually it was a beautiful, breezy memorial day weekend. day-weekend? why do we say that?
Now that Aaron’s no longer buried in the papers or having to spend weekends in the lab, this kid’s got a hold of our social calendar – and he’s wearing me out!
We managed to squeeze in sailing with the Fuller family, the Edmond Jazz & Blues Festival, the movie Angels and Demons, {studying}, hanging out at the pool, cooking out with the Klein family, and an overnight camping trip out in Western Oklahoma!

Ohmystinkinheck.

I’m really behind on my posting, so I’ll let the pictures tell the tale…
Because if you don’t have pictures, it never really happened.
Aaron said I ‘squealed’ when he told me we were going sailing.
It’s true. Up there on my ‘favorite-things-to-do-of-all-time’ list.
My brother and I even went to sailing ‘camp’ for 3 weeks. If I tell you where, you might not speak to me for a few days.
but you’d think we’d know more ‘fundamentals’.
That’s why Aaron & I are doing this next spring.

The Cap’n and his first mates.

sailing into the sunset... Never sailed the blustery Oklahoma wind. A different story than the still lakes of Tennessee.
When we have a sailboat, I want to name it this. Cracked me up.

We also caught a couple acts at the Edmond Blues & Jazz Festival this weekend, what beautiful weather we had! I tried to study that afternoon and had a momentary meltdown. That’s what happens when you work hard and play hard. Sure, it sounds good in theory. But, you’re stinkin’ exhausted.

Aaron’s aunt and uncle invited the whole family to grill out on Sunday afternoon out in the country. We got to play with our ‘first-cousin-once-removed’, little Mckinlee who was, of course, a little doll. We planned to camp out by the pond on some of Aaron’s family’s land. You would be proud of me, someone mentioned the word “rattlesnake” about three times before we set out…and I still went. The grass was so high, I think at first I walked around like I was doing football drills.
We set up camp and quickly broke out the fishing gear. There were 5 campers, us and Melody, her friend Eric, and Aaron's cousin Merlanda. Between all of us, we were hoping to catch our dinner. Only Melody was so lucky.

I was especially motivated {being a hater of hot-dogs}.

Maybe I was simply distracted by this beautiful view.
Aaron had watched a You-Tube video on how to fillet a fish the morning before. no kidding. He actually did a great job. We rubbed some seasoning on it, and grilled up the fresh bass. It was actually really delicious! {So, we're out in the middle of nowhere, but Merlandas Iphone had this photo up on facebook in 3 seconds...not sure how I feel about this technology sometimes.}
enjoying the great outdoors, watching shooting stars, telling ghost stories.
{maybe there's an app for that...}
all s'mores are not created equal.
the next morning we took to helping out with turtle overpopulation... happy campers.

5.26.2009

where my musics playing...

When I wait too long to post, I tend to forget the little details.
{that’s half the reason I like to keep this thing, just for my poor, sad little memory.}

So, let’s see. I have a brother…yes… and he graduated from high school…
It’s all coming back to me.

So, I made the lovely drive from Oklahoma to Tennessee to spend a long weekend with the family. A short visit, but isn’t it always? On my first day, we took this cutie pie out for a picnic and afternoon at the park.

Do you know any other one year olds who will sport a pair of shades for 3 hours?
She had a blast on the swings and the slides… such an adventurous, independent little one. I heard her cry maybe once the whole three days. She’s just constantly smiling, talking, laughing...and naturally the center of attention.
It was the highlight of my month to be able to spend so much time with my niece, it’s heartbreaking to be so far away from her {and the rest of my family too… but you guys stay the same. She, on the other hand, is always changing, learning, up to new things all the time…} She’s really a lot of fun. That’s what aunts get to do, be there for the ‘fun part’. I couldn’t quite get her to say my name though. We’ll have to work on that when they come to visit this summer.
I’m sure this kid is bound to walk the commencement stage many more times. {He’s already told me that he plans to be in school until he is 30. Nothing wrong with that, huh Aaron?} Our little brother is going to be a Belmont Bruin next year majoring in Biology with interests in everything from music and cartooning to bioengineering and medicine. {A bruin is a bear, in case you were wondering. Not sure why they don’t just say bear. But, maybe Bruin is more elite…and confusing.}
We’re so excited for you, and so proud of you. And I’m sure you’ll only continue to climb…
Class of 2009.
…two years until my ten-year reunion?!...
Crap. That means one year until I have to start planning it! Argh. I remember having the overanalyzing-foresight of specifically not running for class-officer senior year of high school so I wouldn’t have to do this. they twisted my arm. That’s ok, all of ‘they’ get to be on committees or something.

Surprisingly, I was able to visit with lots of family during my short stint. I had a chance to hang out and grill out @ Dad’s with my aunt & uncle after Lo’s main event, caught up with Mom and Grandma just sitting on the porch swing on Saturday afternoon, spent Saturday night grilling out at the house and playing {winning} poker with the boys & mom. I even took an extra day off of work, so I could stick around Sunday for church and ‘supper’, and squeezed in breakfast with Hannah in Jackson on my drive back to OK.

Sunday afternoon @ Logan's graduation party at church.

Fishing with Jim & Jill in Mama and Papa's backyard.

Riding Leo with the kids... {even I got a turn}
what a lovely sunday afternoon in the country. After 8 years of being away from home, I still haven't gotten used to Sundays in the city.
chased her around for about 20 minutes with my camera. she moves fast.
miss photogenic.FIVE-generation family photo. On the last day, Logan decided he needed a little post-graduation moment of rebellion...
I told someone that my brother had shaved his hair into a mohawk to which they replied "what did your mother think?" ...well, she did it. my punk little brother, ladies and gentleman.