Friday, March 27, 2009

55 Days Left To

read 1666 pages
write 2 5-page book reviews over 535 of those pages
write 1 journal over 301 of those pages
take 10 quizzes over the remaining pages
take 1 interview
take 2 final exams
do 1 presentation
take 1 other quiz

Actually most of these things are due by May 7th, and I'll be out of the country for 11 days. That means it's actually 31 days to do everything except take the 2 final exams and read 298 of the pages and take 3 of the quizzes. Oh, how I long to graduate.

Monday, March 23, 2009

A Glimpse of My World

This is what's been happening where I'm from:

Mt. Redoubt erupting. Photo courtesy of Getty Images.

That's right, Mt. Redoubt finally blew its top. People have been predicting its eruption since January, and it finally happened. Ash is falling on my hometown as I type this. The last eruption cycle was in 1990. I was in 5th grade and I can vaguely remember the streets covered in ash and my school passing out breathing masks before we left school on one of the days it erupted.

Mt. Redoubt is located about 50 miles west of Kenai (my hometown), directly across the Cook Inlet. The current eruptions have spewed ash almost 12 miles into the air. In 1990, a Boeing 747 flying from Amsterdam was caught in the plume, all engines failed, and it had to emergency land in Anchorage. Mt. Redoubt is the highest mountain in the Aleutian Range at 10,200 feet, and is an active volcano, this being its 4th eruption cycle. Currently, it has erupted five times since Sunday evening (Alaska-time...GMT -9).

Mt. Redoubt, letting off steam on March 15th. Photo courtesy of the Alaska Volcano Observatory.

Some of you might be wondering what the big deal is. I mean, it's just some ash, right? No. The 1990 eruptions caused $160 million in damage. Ash can cause problems for people with respiratory problems, and can also harm skin and machine parts. This presents a problem when ash lands and is then stirred up by wind or vehicles because the ash then gets into car engines, therefore causing damage. School is probably canceled today. We never get snow-days, but we have been known to get ash-days!

A photo I took in 2005 from my hometown. Mt Redoubt is on the right.

Edit: So apparently ash didn't actually fall on Kenai...between the ash being 12 miles in the air and all the wind that they've been having, it all blew north. Guess nobody got the day off of school, after all.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Hurricanes Game

On Wednesday night, Shannon and I took a much needed break from the insanity of midterms and we went to a Carolina Hurricanes hockey game. We probably shouldn't have, since we both had a midterm the next day, and we missed small group in order to go. were only $12 each, and I'd never been to a professional anything game, and Shannon had never seen a real hockey game. So, we got tickets for the two of us and my sister and brother-in-law (who's a hockey nut) and we went!

My and Shannon's tickets...all $24 worth! The New Jersey Devils used to have a guy from Alaska on their team...but he no longer plays for them. That was a bummer to learn!

This is the view you get for $12 a ticket!

My sister, Rachel, and I outside the RBC Center, wearing 'Canes red.

Shannon (who didn't get the memo about wearing red) and Lucas.

The 'Canes are in red and the Devils are in white...interesting since in basketball the home team wears the white uniform.

The game was fun and the Hurricanes won 4-2. There were a ton of people there, but nothing compares to the Auburn-Alabama football game that we went to back in 2007.

As far as school goes, Shannon has finished his midterms. I've taken one and have one to take tomorrow (yes, on Saturday) and one to take on Tuesday. Then I have about 70 more pages to read in order to take a quiz by Thursday. And then on Friday I'll be reading and memorizing so that when Shannon's dad and stepmom come into town next weekend we can have some fun! And then we'll be finishing up the packing and preparing to head to Turkey in April. 62 more days of insanity.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Tea Time!

Today was a fantastic day. I finally got the tea kettle that I ordered with birthday money that my mom sent me. I ordered it probably about 2 weeks ago and the estimated arrival date was mid-April. So, I was excited to see it come today!

Then, after I got the tea kettle, I ran into my friend Jonathan who said he had something for me...tea from Poland from my friend Lindsay! I was so, so excited. I think it's really funny how when you live overseas you want people to bring you stuff from America, and now that I'm back in America, I want people to bring me stuff from overseas! Anyhow, here's to many more hot cups of caramel and "taste of London" tea, with hot water from my new kettle! Thanks, Mom and Lindsay!

A new tea kettle, Dilmah caramel tea, and Lipton "Taste of London" tea, my all-time favorite.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Can You Think Of...

...six good reasons to work someplace where they host lots of weddings and you have to stand on your feet for hours on end, deal with people drinking more than they should, and deal with sometimes lazy coworkers? I can:

When the bride spends $3000 on flowers, even her family doesn't want them all!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

A Quilt from Joyce

Can you see the stitching? Joyce did it all by hand.

I've been meaning to post about this quilt for a couple of months now, but as I think you all know from my previous post almost 3 weeks ago, I've been a bit busy.

When I moved to North Carolina in August 2006, I stopped at my dad and stepmom's for a couple of days. While I was there my stepmom, Joyce, asked me to pick out a pattern for a quilt. So, I picked one out, said I wanted it to be blue, and told her that I wanted a full-sized one, since that's the size bed I was going to buy. A few months later, after I was engaged, I had to request her to up it to a queen since there would be two of us sleeping under it now!

The pillowcases don't match, but the colors are so beautiful!

Fast-forward to January 2009. On my way home from a trip to Chattanooga to see a friend, I stopped in to pick up the quilt that Joyce had been working on for the past year. I don't think I've ever had anyone work so hard and diligently on any one thing for me! (Well, unless you count the rebuilding of my car...that took a lot of work too.) I couldn't believe how beautiful it was! And neither could Diana...she said that she almost asked Joyce to make her one! Anyways, the quilt is proudly displayed on our bed for all to see. We absolutely love it, and every time we climb into bed and feel it around us, we're reminded of all the hard work that went into it. Thanks, Joyce!