Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Fresh Start!

Ok, I'm notoriously bad at keeping up with journaling and in this case, blogging....but with the new year comes new goals! I have more time to myself now and aim to keep up with our blog.

As Inigo Montoya once said when trying to explain to Wesley what had happened, "There is too much. Let me sum up." And so, since there is too much to go into much detail, I will "sum up" the last year or so since I last posted. :)
John and I made it through Spring 2011 semester with a lot of work and a lot of help from neighbors helping to watch Thomas. (He was just over 3 months old when I went back to school!) It was a very tough several months, but worth it. He wasn't sleeping through the night yet and still breastfeeding, so it took a lot of work...but we made it. :)

We then ventured off to Elko, NV for the summer for John's internship with an underground gold mine as an industrial hygienist. We were blessed in finding somewhere to live (it's really difficult finding rentals out there, especially short-term ones!). First we lived with a great couple named Edgar and Laura. I was able to help her get to dr. appointments (she was pregnant), etc. since she didn't have a license. After their new landlord wanted us out, we were able to stay with another great couple, Zach and Dixie, and their adorable little girl, Mel. We met them in the ward and they generously offered for us to stay in the basement of their house for the remainder of the summer. It was a great experience and a fun summer with lots of exploring and adventures! I know the Lord truly blessed us and our experience there prepared us for where we are now....
After the summer was over, we returned to our place in Logan and began the new semester, the LAST one for BOTH of us! John had 21 credits (really 18 since 3 were his internship) and I was student teaching. We knew we were in for a long ride! Unfortunately, our schedules didn't align very well. We also had just one car and needed to go in opposite directions! (Thank goodness for the free city bus) We were blessed to have a couple that we are good friends with watch our little Thomas for the long days we had to be away. They even have a little girl several months older than Thomas for him to play with! :) It was such a blessing to not have to worry about him and to have such a great place for him to be. They even lived close to where I did my student teaching! (Smithfield)
This was a difficult semester. I mean, a REALLY difficult semester. It was hard to leave my sweet Thomas when he cried (he didn't cry much and was a great sport, but still). It was hard to pick him up after a long day and have him want to be held and play all evening when I had lessons to plan and just wanted to rest. It was hard not seeing John very much. It was hard to deal with the issues that came up with my cooperating teacher and having to go back day after day and put on a happy face and put in 115%. (Some of you know that story...) But we stuck it out, and finally we reached the end of the semester. John finished out his finals and presentations and papers, etc. and I finished all my paperwork associated with student teaching and we were done. Just done. It felt good, but surreal. I'm still not sure if it's quite sunk in...

There wasn't graduation since it was winter semester (I know, rip off), but John had his commissioning ceremony. (Like graduation from R.O.T.C. and officially becoming an officer) It was a neat ceremony and very personal (only 3 guys!). He looked preeeetty spiffy in his dress blues! (Even though I HATE the mismatched colors....) We had several people there to support him and were able to eat out afterwards. It was a great night. John is now a 2nd lieutenant!

During the semester, John put in many applications for jobs. We both drove out mid-week mid-semester to Winnemucca, NV for an interview with another gold mine (a 6-hour drive!). That was a tough trip, but ended up being worth it... He got the job offer about a week or so later! Though he had an offer for another internship, we took the more permanent job. It's just what we'd wanted! (Though we were hoping to be located in Elko again.)

So we made plans to move out to Winnemucca after graduation. We had to postpone moving though since we once again had trouble finding somewhere to live! (Darn those small mining towns!) Luckily we made contact to several people and found a large home to rent for the next 5-6 months while the couple that owns it is on a mission. It's beautiful and HUGE! :) Thomas loves having the space (and the fenced backyard!).

We spent a nice Christmastime with John's parents and family. It was fun. :) John got a shotgun and I got a Kindle Fire (both items we both love and have used!). Thomas got a train set, jammies, a truck, book, an outfit, and several toys.

We've enjoyed getting settled here in Winnemucca and have already been on some great adventures in the area! More about those adventures to come... We have a GREAT ward who has really reached out to us and John got a calling as 2nd counselor in the Elder's Quorum while (so far) I've been called as a visiting teacher. We spoke in church a week ago Sunday and survived to tell about the experience. :)

As an update on Thomas, he is 16 months old and walking, talking, dancing, and copying everything we do! We sure love him. :)
P.S. I'm hoping to add pictures and videos to catch up from the last year or so, bit by bit, so bear with me. :)

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