Friday, November 16, 2012

Stuff Speech Pathology Majors Never Say

In case you were wondering what getting a Masters in Speech-Language Pathology is all about just look at this video - its the exact opposite.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Fall In New England

Last weekend Ross, Dee and I went to Wachusett Mountain for a little leaf peeping.  Fall here has been gorgeous, particularly compared to last year.  There were only a few leaves left to turn colors after Hurricane Irene last August and a freak snowstorm on Halloween.  I'm so happy that the trees are so beautiful right now, especially since my Momma is coming on Thursday! I'm so excited to see her and show her our new digs.  In the meantime, photos will have to do.

Oh, and it's time for midterms.  Am I a little stressed out?  No, not me.  I'm a LOT stressed out.  Behold:

Sunday, September 2, 2012

A Summer In Review

Wow, I've been MIA for way too long.  You should know that it has been for all the right reasons though.  I have been living life too fully to blog about it.  Lots of exciting things have happened since I returned from Italy in mid-June.  First of all, I moved in with this handsome devil:

Ross and I have a lovely condo and I'm really enjoying getting it all put together.  We are pretty happy, and so is Dee.  We have a guest room so please feel free to come visit!

I went to California in August to visit my parents which was really nice.  While I was there this little guy was found and adopted by my parents (and Arrow).  His name is Sarge and he and Arrow are besties.

I also had my 28th birthday when I was in Cali.  I have a hard time believing I'm that old, but I will just look at it as another good year to come.  Thing 1 and Thing 2 were there to help me celebrate which was sweet too.

Classes start on Tuesday which has me a bit stressed out, as you can imagine.  The new condo is about an hour from school and work which seems far but the rent is so much better and the area so beautiful.  Hopefully I will be able to share a few photos of the interior of the condo soon, once I have it all decked out.  

Oh yeah, and on Monday I dropped a kitchen knife into my foot while working on Martha's Vineyard. Two stitches later and I'm still pretty sore and bruised.  

Other than all of that excitement I'm just enjoying lots of time with my love and the German Shepherd.  I hope I am better about blogging but am not making any promises.  Thanks for hanging in there. 

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Few Thoughts From Tuscany

I've been in Italy for about 3 weeks now. I'm staying and working for the family I nanny for in a villa near Lucca. I haven't been able to post anything here (Italian wifi) so I thought I would do a rambling post of my thoughts. Here it goes:

Not only have I driven a bunch here in Italy, but I've been driving a stick shift. I am more proud of myself than I have any right to be.

I can get used to three hours of daily housekeeping. Fast.

The walls of giant Tuscan villas are about 3 feet thick.

A guy with a weed eater is cleaning up the olive grove outside my bedroom. At 9pm. He does this several times a week.

I can confirm that the Leaning Tower of Pisa does, indeed, lean. Walking up it is dizzying.

Tuscan sunsets are unlike any other.

A four leaf clover in Italian is "Il Quadrifoglio". It's my new favorite word.

Gelato is like crack.

Today is The Boyfriend's birthday. I miss him so much and wish I could celebrate with him.

I will be sure to post pics once I'm back in the US in about a week. Arrivederci for now.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Post Finals, Beginning Of Summer Ramblings

Sorry again for the absence, but I've been busy with a couple of things.  I will be sure to write a full post soon.  Thanks for your patience and enjoy The Boyfriend, The German Shepard, and me IN SCUBA GEAR!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Get It Together

I know, I seem to start every post lately with "I'm such a bad blogger for not writing in so long".  This last gap was particularly long and I'm sorry.  I had midterms followed by Spring Break in California followed by a not so fun knee injury.  Let's start with midterms- they are over.  End of story.  Spring Break was awesome.  I spent ten days with my parents in Cali and got to enjoy some fantastic weather.  I left the cold snowy Northeast and arrived in the Napa Valley to sun and 70 degree weather.  Finally, a couple of weeks ago I dislocated my left knee cap.  Yeah, it sounds worse than it is.  It hurts like a bitch but I had an MRI and there is nothing torn in there so I don't have to have surgery on it again.  (I had surgery on that knee in the 8th grade after a track and field injury).  I have to wear a brace for a while which prompts people to ask me what happened.  I wish I had a better story.  All that I did was kneel down for too long and when I stood up the knee popped out.  It has dislocated before so I knew immediately what had happened.  The cause of the repeated dislocation is actually something that I have called Benign Joint Hypermobility Syndrome.  It makes me very, well, bendy.  So there you have it, one of my many freaky qualities.

Sorry this post is such a random mashup of information but my brain is a bit tired.  Here's a little treat though: A family portrait I took when I was in California using my awesome tripod.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Norovirus - Nowhere To Hide

Well, I guess knocking wood in my last post and bathing in Purell didn't help. I woke up at 4 o'clock this morning with full on Noro - vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramps and pain. Apparently I can expect about 48-60 more hours of this. I feel like they need an ad campaign for Noro like the "It Gets Better" campaign for gay teens. Like someone coming on the screen saying "yesterday I thought I was going to die on the floor of my bathroom, now I'm feeling well and have lost five pounds. It gets better."

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Veg Veg Revolution - One Year In

First off, let me say that the plague may have finally left my house (knock wood). The viral bronchitis triggered a lovely inner ear infection which left me partially deaf for a week or so. Fun all around. Norovirus is sweeping through Boston right now and recently Thing One was running a 103.1 degree fever. Luckily it never turned into the puking, diarrhea and stomach cramping of Noro, but the virus is particularly quick to spread so we are all bathing in Purell anyway.

Now, on to the main subject of this post. I have a really difficult time wrapping my head around the fact that I've been a vegetarian for a year. That's 365 days people! As the song goes - 525,600 minutes! (Math and musical theatre in one sentence. Winning!). Anyway, here are a few things I have learned on this journey.

- Being a vegetarian right now is pretty easy. Plus, with all the vegans out there us vegetarians seem low maintenance in comparison.

- Vegetarianism makes you aware of what you are eating, but it isn't all consuming (pun not intended). It's relatively easy to know what is and is not vegetarian. Sometimes eating out can be tricky because many soups and sauces have meat stock bases even if they sound vegetarian.

- When people hear that I'm a vegetarian they inevitably have a few questions and comments. 1. Why? 2. Does being around meat bother you (answer - no). 3. I wish I could do that! (you can). It's fascinating how relative strangers feel compelled to ask about a personal decision like vegetarianism.

- It's a lot easier to hear news stories/read articles/ see movies about the hideous meat industry in America knowing that I'm not taking part in it.

I don't want to sound like the perfect vegetarian, so here are a few things I could do better.

- Find better ways to get protein. I try to get protein in regular foods (protein rich cereals like Kashi are great).

- I could do a better job getting a wide variety of veggies. I'm working, going to school and have very little time to cook. I try to get veggie nutrients in other ways (adding spinach to smoothies, raw multivitamins, etc), but I could do better.

All in all, I find that I like being a vegetarian. I don't really crave meat, and when I do it's easy to recognize that I crave the preparation of the meat rather than the meat itself (ie chicken strips instead of a simple steak). I encourage you all to give vegetarianism a go, whether for a few days or a few months. I think it's important to occasionally go outside of conventional ideas and try something new. If nothing else, you will learn a bit about what million of Americans do daily.

Here's to another meat free year. I have to get through a meatless month in Italy soon which may be difficult. Do the Italians have a word for vegetarian? I'm guessing no.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

San Francisco, View From Takeoff

It's a lot of fun to fly in and out of San Francisco because the landmarks of the area are so easily defined. This shot shows San Francisco (peninsula on left side of picture), the Marin Headlands (hills to North), and the Bay Bridge (two spans of bridge with Treasure Island in the the middle at center of picture).

Friday, February 3, 2012

Sunset In Napa Valley - Christmas Eve

Not a bad place at all to think of as "back home".

Monday, January 30, 2012

Indie Go-Go

I heard about this cool site called Indie Go-Go when I was in California over the holidays.  It is a way for people to ask for donations to a personal cause.  I have decided to open a page called Help Meghan Pay For Graduate School.  You can go HERE to see the campaign and make a donation.  Tell your friends!

Thanks for your support.  You are all flowers in the garden of awesome.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Blogging By Typhoid Meghan

This time I have a really good excuse for why I haven't posted in a while.  I have the plague.  Well not the plague but certainly a plague.  It started about 10 days ago as a mostly GI virus.  Thing One brought it home from preschool and proceeded to infect me, his parents, Thing Two and maybe the entire city of Boston.  The GI symptoms quickly and astonishingly morphed into a disgusting, chest rattling, nasty wet cough.  I saw the doctor and was diagnosed with viral bronchitis.  This basically means I treat the symptoms and wait for the sweet release of death, or recovery, whichever comes first.  I've got 50 bucks on death.

On top of the plague I am dealing with insane amounts of new information coming my way at school.  Do you know what 3 hours of Neuroanatomy feels like at 8pm?  I do.  It's not fun.  Not at all.

During this same period of time the weather in Boston has decided to do everything in its power to qualify for a schizophrenia diagnosis.  In my last post I mentioned that the weather was mild with highs in the 40s and lows in the 20s.  That's also what the weather is like right now.  In fact, I showed you a picture of campus just to prove how unseasonably warm and dry it was, remember?

Then this happened.

Yeah, snow.  We had a couple of days of heavy snow that ended up accumulating about 4-5 inches.  Then it was sunny for a bit, then it rained, and now I think the forecast is rain mixed with sun and snow. They want to cover all the bases here.  I guess the saying is true, if you don't like the weather in Boston then wait five minutes.  What this means for me is that just when I have the whole parka, scarf, gloves, hat, boots dance perfected, I have to turn around and start layering like it was fall.  It's all very confusing.

Here's something else that I've been having fun with while not blogging.

No, she isn't mine.  She lives downstairs and I just steal her when I need a little pick me up.  Wouldn't you? 

I'm going to get back to dying a slow death.  There are a couple of posts in the queue so either way there will be another post or two here soon.  

Monday, January 16, 2012

But I've Always Found My Way Somehow, By Taking The Long Way Around

First off, let me say that I'm a bad blogger given that it has been over a month since my last post.  I figured it was time for me to let all my supporters know what is going on with my life.  I've decided to break in down into a few helpful categories.

School:  I just began my second semester at Northeastern University's Graduate School of Speech Language Pathology and Audiology.  I had to write that all out because I still can't believe that I was accepted into this program.  I aced my first semester and hope to do the same this time around.  Something that has helped me through is two new girlfriends who are in my program.  We are crazy, funny, and we kind of just clicked.  I'm so thankful for them.  I'm not sure how we can only have known each other a few months, it feels like longer.  We are the three nerdy Musketeers.  We can complain about the guys here, and dating issues.  (Little known fact - There are almost no male Speech Language Pathologists.  It's a girls club.  Makes meeting guys on campus a bit difficult.  Apparently men don't like to talk about talking.  SURPRISE!)  Do I love Northeastern University?  Your answer is this photo from one of my classes on campus.

Work: I think I can describe my job in a few words: exhausting, incredibly fulfilling, life altering.  As I have mentioned, the family I work for is wonderful.  They are kind, generous and fun.  C is two-and-a-half and is a delightful handful.  We've started time-outs and are trying to cut back on the whining, but his smiles and dimples part the dark clouds.  His language is exploding and I usually feel like a translator.  I have known him since he was 20 months old and love to watch him grow and attach to me.  M is 8 months old and is hysterical.  I've know her since she was 7 weeks old and we have a special bond.  Her giggles are infectious and she is so easygoing.  She is so close to crawling and it really frustrates her that she can't.  I love them so much.

Home Life:  Well, I went home to California for 3 weeks over Christmas vacation.  It was wonderful, but weird. I was home, but it wasn't home. I didn't take a single picture (except the one I snapped of Jeff Corwin at the airport after we got off the same flight).

Then I came back to my cozy apartment and felt at home, and I consider that a blessing.  I don't get to spend much time here (I worked 50+ hours this week plus school), but it is home.  I feel so lucky to have found this place.  I spent Thanksgiving with the family who owns the house and lives downstairs.  It was wonderful.  A little touch football, some food, and laughter.  All wonderful.

Boston/Weather: I really have grown to love Boston, Cambridge and the surrounding areas.  I feel like the entire area is one big College.  The history is is wonderful, as are the people.  The Charles River is particularly spectacular.  I was warned repeatedly about the weather here, but it hasn't been too bad so far (knock wood).  We did have that one bad snowstorm on Halloween that devastated New England. Since then it has been pretty warm (Highs in the 40's and lows in the teens and 20's). I write this post the temperature outside is 4 degrees and our high is going to be 20.  It has been dry (no snow), just windy and cold.  I find it totally doable, but ask me again in February.  One fascinating/sad thing is that the Charles River is beginning to freeze, which is beautiful, but means no more Harvard Crew teams to see rowing each morning.

Future Plans: Well, as we all know, plans change, but here is a little taste.  I'm going back to California for Spring Break in early March.  Then in May and June I will be spending a month at a villa in Tuscany with the family I nanny for.  Just let that sink in.  Italy for a month, while being paid.  I also hope to continue to explore Boston and the Northeast.

Highs and Lows:  I'm not going to pretend that there haven't been hard times since my move.  Particularly since my return from California last week.  I try to think of this adage -  "Get a large group of people together and have them take their biggest problem in life and place it on a table.  After looking around at everyone's problems, each person takes their own problem back from the table".  I like to think hat I was given my challenges for a reason and I need to own them and work them through.  That's also why I chose Dixie Chicks lyrics for the title of this post.

The Long Way Around (abridged)

"I've been a long time gone now, maybe someday, someday I'm gonna settle down
But I've always found my way some how
By taking the long way
Taking the long way around

Well I fought with a stranger and I met myself 
I opened my mouth and I heard myself
It can get pretty lonely when you show yourself
Guess I could have been easier on myself  
But I, I could never follow
No I, I could never follow

Well I never seem to do it like anybody else 
Maybe someday, someday I'm gonna settle down
If you ever want to find me I can still be found 
Taking the long way around"