One year done.

Boom. Just like that I am one year away from being an RN. It has been one hell of a quarter. From me breaking my neck to Amanda needing an emergency appendectomy. Somehow, we got through it and occasionally had some fun.

We had a sunset kayak with Mount Rainier majestically looming in the background. This was just a couple of days before Amanda was doubled over in pain and we took her to the ER.Screen Shot 2014-06-21 at 12.51.20 PM Screen Shot 2014-06-21 at 12.56.33 PM I found my new favorite creek that is close to Seattle. This was the fish of the day. 
Screen Shot 2014-06-21 at 12.50.37 PMSummer has begun and I plan on doing lots of fun things that do not involve nursing school. Thanks for following along.

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I am not sending you a Christmas card.

Merry Christmas. I thought about sending out a card, but decided this would be better. Easier on the environment, better for my bank account, and easier for you to reply. I remember when people would send a letter updating our family about what has happened with their family. These days, we all know what is going on as soon as it happens. FacebookTwitterInstagram, and personal websites have made sure of that. If you missed any of those, click on them and you can be updated.

Here is a short recap of the year if you aren’t as addicted to the world wide web as I am. Last winter, I got a gyotaku kit and began the Japanese art of “fish rubbing”.

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The problem is I usually let my fish go after catching them, so I don’t get to practice much. I did fish quite a bit despite the cold temperatures and there being some decent snow on the ground.

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When the snow fell heavily, we went cross country skiing. Amanda got us skis for Christmas last year and we used them quite a bit.

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In the spring, we built a couple of fun things. One is an aquaponic set up inside a pallet. We found a used pallet, lined it with plastic pipes and ran a pump up the inside. The fish below poops and provides nutrients for the plants on the wall. I built the light to save money and energy.

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We also built a chicken coop. It looked great and would have been amazing if our landlord had not sold the house. This forced us to move and leave this amazing coop. Unfortunately, it was destroyed before the house was sold.

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We had an amazing summer this year. Months of warm temperatures and sunshine in then Northwest is apparently rare. We went to our first Seattle Sounders soccer match.

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We caught dungeness and red rock crab.

Black tipped claws!

Black tipped claws!

We caught salmon and smoked them. In fact we will probably eat them during the holidays!

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The highlight of my summer was twofold. The first thing that happened is that I was accepted to nursing school. Yay! That was big news. For one last hurrah, we headed east. First Walla Walla, Washington for some wine, then onto Idaho for cutthroat trout fishing. We had some big hungry fish come play with us that left smiles on our faces for days. We hit hot springs and then moved on to Missoula, Montana.

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For Amanda’s birthday we headed west. We hot the Washington coast and we razor clam digging. It was an absolutely gorgeous evening and we even got some clams.

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After half a decade, I caught up with my cousin Hunter for a too short of a time. I feel like most of us cousins can stay in touch via Facebook, Instagram, etc. and it somehow brings us closer without seeing each other.

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Amanda is still working at Woodland Park Zoo and growing a successful dog running business.

Now, I am in nursing school and have very little time to do anything fun. I spend two days a week in school, two days a week at the VA hospital, and two days a week at work. Every other minutes seems to be spent studying. I am loving it though. It seems to be flying by and creeping along at the same time.

So from up here in Seattle, have a Merry Christmas or whatever you celebrate. Thank you very much to everyone that helped make life possible this year.

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November 20th – Mountains.

In the summer, I love to fish the creeks, river, and lakes in the mountains.

Screen shot 2013-11-22 at 5.26.40 AM Screen shot 2013-11-22 at 5.27.29 AM Screen shot 2013-11-22 at 5.27.49 AMIn the winter, we are out cross country or downhill skiing, snowboarding, or fishing in them still.

Screen shot 2013-11-22 at 5.31.17 AM Screen shot 2013-11-22 at 5.30.10 AMThe mountains are less populated all over the world. The high elevations of Washington, Hawai’i, Colorado and New Zealand have all impacted me. Go check your mountains out now!