Friday, October 30, 2015

Fall into October

When the trees begin to get that brown sugar and cinnamon look to them, that's when you know that fall has arrived. Breaking out the boots and the sweatshirts in the crisp cool air while sipping on marshmallow laden hot chocolate after a long walk through a park bursting with deep pumpkin oranges, ruby apple reds, and sunshine yellows of the surrounding leaves is enough to make anyone long for this season.

Fall in Chicago is what first helped me fall in love with this place that we have called home for 3 and a half years and it will be one things I will dearly miss. 

Some of my favorite fall activities here have been apple picking at Elegant Farmer in Wisconsin and downing an entire peck of apples while you pick. Then polishing off the tart sweetness with a apple cider donut on the way home.

Raspberry picking at Thompson Strawberry farm and then making homemade raspberry jam afterwards. Then going to Jerry Smith farms to go pumpkin picking and Krolls Farm for a fun cornmaze.

And then there are all the leaves here.. sooo many leaves in sooo many colors. We have loved taking our bikes around the different little towns and riding around looking at the houses perfectly framed with flames of color. We also have enjoyed walking along Lake Michigan with the bright blue on one side of you and the fiery trees on the other.

Fall has always been my favorite season. It's where the world practically bursts with it's last beauty of the year.. I have the hardest time staying in the house when I know all this gorgeousness is just outside our door.

If you are wondering why Lydia's mouth is black above.. yes we are those parents who let our child eat dirt.. but only sometimes Ha, sometimes I wonder how we make it through the days alive with this little girl. She keeps me in a half sitting/standing position all day because she is always trying to get into something. But boy, oh boy.. is she a beauty.

This picture overload is my way of preserving this fleeting but wonderful fall. I am so grateful for photos and how they allow us to preserve moments and memories in this extremely fast-paced world. It allows me to love this season just a little bit longer while I'm glancing through photos on my phone laying in bed at night just listening to the breathing (or Lydia's midnight teething cries) of my family around me. 

Goodbye Fall.. Who knows where we will be when we meet again.


Tuesday, October 27, 2015

First Residency Interview... or something like that

Today Brian has his first interview for residency.

And from now until the end of January he will drive and fly up and down the West coast and Midwest telling everyone why he wants to go their residency program.. or something like that.

His suit will be freshly dry-cleaned, his hair neatly trimmed, face smoothly shaved and he will try to convince these programs why they want to choose him for a resident.

Well.. kind of choose him... rank him on their list of top residents is a better explanation.

And then come January when all smiles have been shown and questions asked and answered, and with interviews completed. We will compile the list of our top programs.

And then our list of desired residency programs and each program's list of desired students gets plugged into a computer that uses a mathematical algorithm to calculate where we best match and wallah!! It's a MATCH! Or.. something like that.

We leave our fate to a computer that assigns one person to go here.. and another here. We could stay in Illinois, we could move North to Wisconsin, or East to Ohio.. or South to Texas.. or West to California.. or let my heart hope.. Utah.

So let's take a look at our current and future to do list.. 

→ spend life savings (or more loans) on applications, interviews, flights, rental cars, gas and an interview wardrobe.
→ match day (3rd Friday in March)
→ move in April to residency location (we've set up our schedule to move earlier than graduation to have more time to get settled and take a graduation vacation)
→ graduate (First weekend of June)
→ work, work, work, cat nap, work, work, work, cat nap, repeat for first year of residency
→ 3 years of Internal Medicine residency
→ 2-3 years of a fellowship (yet to be determined)
→ get first paycheck to pay off $300,00+ loans... or.. something like that.

It truly is exciting.. and scary to be at this point of the medical school process. There are so many unknowns and new opportunities just around the corner.

Match day will come. I will wait anxiously like a kid on Christmas wondering if I'll get a sack of coal for calling my brother names or if I sneaked by with the barbie doll I wanted.

Brian will come home tonight from MCW and tell me all about his first interview and then we'll prep him for the next one this time next week.

Things are really hopping around here.. or something like that.


Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Chicago Lovin'

Chicago... my current mountains..

We have wanted to go to the Shedd Aquiriam for a while, but call us cheap (actually, just call us medical students) and you'll understand why we waited for the museum free day to go.

Fish are amazing.. the sea/amazon/ocean/fresh water creatures are incredible and mysterious. There is no doubt in my mind that there is a God who created all these creatures. They are beautiful and I'm grateful we had the chance to admire them.

For date night, Brian and I boarded The Spirit of Chicago cruise and boated along the skyline of Chicago. It was GORGEOUS.. or let's be honest.. We made it that way. 

What we didn't know when we got on the boat was that 90% of the people were there for a booze cruise.. And the music was horrible. I must be getting old because I did not want to spend my date night among sweaty flirty scantly dressed people singing along to music whose lyrics were completely full of swear words and nastiness..

So.. we went outside on the deck (though it was cold) and I turned on Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin from my phone and we spent the night dancing. THAT is my kind of date night and cruise. We even had some people jump in on the dancing.

We are lovin' our Chicago experience. 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Lydia's 1st Year Journal

Putting these all together has me holding my breath to get the tears to go away that are threatening to spill. I have enjoyed this last year so much with this girl. She doesn't even look like the same baby as she did a year ago.. and truth is. I'm not the same person either.

I've grown so much as a person and a mother. I am so grateful for every moment (even the hard ones) with my little family.

Isn't she a beauty?!