Friday, November 6, 2009

Got Interest?

So... July, huh? It seems rather obvious that I have lost interest in blogging. The thing is... I haven't really. I sort of have... It annoys me when my pictures don't load, I spend way too much of my computer time on Facebook, and lately I feel like I don't have anything extremely interesting to write about. But I really wish I wrote more on here.

I think that people probably don't really care about the little things that are going on in my life, but I know that is not completely true. I love reading blogs. I like to hear about the small, everyday occurrences in the lives of people that I know or even are just acquainted with. I guess I am just not good at putting my thoughts out there on a forum that somehow dissipates into the internet abyss for anyone and everyone to read. It seemed easier when there were "events" to write about. Lately, we have not been traveling, we have been trying to budget better - so no more expensive date nights -, and we just have not had the time together to do anything "interesting."

In July, I started a new job. I am working for a home health company as a clinical nurse liaison based out of one of the big hospitals in Chicago. The transition has been interesting. I work 9-5, M-F, which is so much less stressful than what I was doing before. But... it is also much more boring. I think "boring" is definitely the way to go at this point in time. Sean's work environment is stressful enough for the both of us.

I can't believe he will be halfway done with residency in less than two months! The time has gone by so fast but so slow at the same time. I cannot emphasize enough how happy I/we will be when this phase is over. Residency sucks... I know that he is learning what he needs to know and that we will look back fondly on our time here in Chicago, but the hours/work environments/studying/researching/test taking/missing holidays/missing time together/etc. are ridiculous. Ridiculous, I tell you!!

We talk about how much we love our little Brigita. Especially on those days when I work a normal day and Sean works 1pm to 11pm, gets up to be at conference at 7am until noon, and then goes back to work that next night for an overnight shift. Oh yes... that happens. So much that it isn't even really surprising when it does. He gets no sleep, and I don't see him for days on end. That is the reality of this chapter in our lives. At least we have our naughty little puppy who makes you feel like you are never really alone in the house.

I didn't mean for this post to sound so negative. We are both really happy in our lives, and, despite the stressors, knowing that this time is only temporary makes it completely bearable. I guess my point (if I had one) was that these are the sorts of things I obviously find to blog about that I think no one probably wants to hear! HA

But then... I was reading my friend Rachel's blog today, and she mentioned documenting a part of her life because she wanted to be able to look back and remember it. Her blog is not only for those who read it, but for her to commemorate different stages in her life.


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Two Years

Sean and I celebrated our second anniversary this past Monday. He worked during the day, so we went out to a nice dinner in the evening. The restaurant we went to is in Lake Point Tower which is very close to Navy Pier, where we spent our anniversary last year. We decided that it would be fun to walk around the pier and get some coffee before going to dinner and make a little tradition while we are living here.

Navy Pier

We heard about this restaurant from one of Sean's co-workers. It is famous for the beautiful view and romantic setting. We were not disappointed at all!!

View from Cite'

I love to re-live the memories of our wedding. We both still talk about how we loved every minute of it. I was just looking at wedding pictures again and thinking about how perfect everything was. The gorgeous weather we had again makes three years of beautiful days on the 13th of July!!

July 13, 2007

Playing Catch Up

Helloooo.... Anyone out there?? Yeah, it's me.... Bet you thought I fell off the face of the earth. I don't even know if I should bother trying to update what has been going on since I posted last FOUR MONTHS ago, but I guess I will attempt a brief synopsis.

After our Hawaii trip, we had a couple crazy months of running around and visiting. It was nice to see everyone we knew but a little hectic at the same time. At beginning of April, we bought a new car and then tried it out on a nice, long road trip back to Minnesota to see immediate and extended family on both sides. Time was brief all around, but we were able to see a great many of our family members. Prior to this excursion, we had escaped for a few days to Boston to visit Erin and Chris.

During May, we had a mini-break of looking for a new place to live (our old landlords got foreclosed on, so we left at the end of our lease) when Sean went to New Orleans for a conference, and my friend Allison flew out to see me for the first time since we moved to Chicago. She is coming back at the end of this month already!!

We moved to a new condo during the last couple weeks in May and during the last weekend, Erin and Chris came to see us here in Chicago! Erin had a work conference, so they both decided to come for a long weekend. Jamie and his girlfriend Samantha also flew in, so we got to have a mini McRoberts reunion. It was really nice to see everyone again so soon. We miss hanging out with siblings, and it seems like the time is always long between visits.

During June, Sean and I tried to relax a little and take advantage of summer in Chicago. We have been setting up our place for a while now, and I think we are finally done. The storage space is incredibly limiting here, so we have had to purge and be extremely organized. This is a good thing, but it just gets kind of old coming home to a place that is just not quite "livable."

I also began looking for a new job during the beginning of the summer. My agency work has been slower than usual, and the fact that this phenomenon was happening in the summer when there is usually more work was disturbing to us. I am also a little fed up with bedside nursing and feel like I need a break, so I began applying for jobs that were different than what I have done in the past.

About a week ago, I accepted a position as a nurse liaison/account manager for a home health company. I am very excited to move this way in my career!! It will be "normal" hours and a fun, challenging change for me away from direct patient care. I start on Monday!

Sean has also transitioned from an "intern" to a "senior" resident. What a relief to have that first year behind him!! This year, apparently, proves to be interesting as the scheduling is the "worst" of all three years. Is that really possible??... hmmm, I guess so. Boo.

We are loving the summertime in Chi-town, even though the weather this summer has been less than desirable. I will post pictures soon of our new place and hopefully keep up better with our latest and greatest adventures (don't you just love how I post links to Erin's blog all the time, because she keeps it updated so well? He he he).

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


At the very beginning of this month, over my birthday, in fact, Sean and I took a trip to the Hawaiian islands. We spent two days on Oahu and six days on Maui, with a little Lanai thrown in for good measure.

We flew into Honolulu in the evening on Saturday, Feburary 28th. After walking around the shops along Waikiki for a while, we crashed and woke up refreshed the next day, ready to start our adventures in paradise. The main reason I wanted to visit Oahu, being that I had never been there and Sean had, was to go to Pearl Harbor. I was very excited about it! And what an experience it was! I am so glad that we took the time to see the USS Arizona memorial. The feeling of being directly above the ship, watching the oil bubble up from the sunken tomb where 900 men still rest, and looking at the names of the 1,177 men who gave their lives on that quiet December morning in 1941 was a memory that I will take with me forever.

We decided that visiting Punchbowl National Cemetery would be a good follow-up to the sobering experience of the USS Arizona memorial, so we drove there next. The memorial area at the cemetery has an abundance of information on the Pacific battles during the time of WWII, so we spent a while reading and looking at maps.

The rest of the day was spent driving around Diamond Head, taking pictures at beautiful beaches, walking the shops at Waikiki, and getting some delectible seafood at one of the resturants on the beach.

The next morning we walked along Waikiki (when can you ever get enough of that!!) before packing up and heading to the airport for the twenty minute flight to Maui.



We arrived on Maui in the afternoon on Monday, March 2nd. After a 50 minute drive across the island (in our rented convertible, of course) from the airport to our resort in Ka'anapali, we spent the evening taking in the beautiful resort grounds and beach and planning our adventures for the next few days. My favorite part of the place where we stayed was definitely the view from the balcony of our room! We looked out over the ocean with the nearby island of Lanai in the background. Watching the sun on the water with the occasional whale surfacing in the bay between Maui and Lanai and listening to the crashing of the waves on the beach was surreal.

The next morning we went horseback riding along the coast and through the mountains, spent the afternoon swimming in the ocean and lying on the beach, and ate some more seafood for dinner. On my birthday we headed out of Lahaina Harbor in a speedboat for an all-day tour of Lanai. We went snorkeling, swam on a deserted beach on the "uninhabited" side of the island, saw two WWII shipwrecks, watched a school of dolphins swim around our boat, and witnessed a humpback whale surface about twenty feet from our little boat. I think it is safe to say my 28th was the best birthday ever!

Mendes Ranch

Snorkeling Around Lanai

We had a relaxing day on Thursday as we drove around and looked at the beautiful cliffs and beaches and swam in the ocean. We even met up with a co-worker of Sean's and her husband for dinner. We all just happened to be on Maui at the same time!
On Friday, we drove the beautiful Road to Hana. 50 miles of twists, turns, one-way bridges, breathtaking views, waterfalls and pools, and gorgeous hiking ended at Wainapanapa State Park and the famous black sand beach. I didn't think it was possible for someplace to be more stunning than the sights we had witnessed along the road, but the jutting lava rocks, black sand, lava tubes, and blow holes with crashing waves contrasted with the bright green foliage took the paradise prize!
The Road to Hana

Black Sand Beach
Wainapanapa State Park
On our final full day before departing back to "real life," we took a whale watching tour in the morning and went to a magnificant lu'au in the evening. It was the perfect way to end our wonderful vacation. What a beautiful place! I would go back in a second!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Just For Fun

During Sean's last rotation, I visited him at work for the first time on one of his slower call days and brought him dinner. Of course I had to get out the phone and snap a picture of him doing his thing!! I'm so proud of him. He works so hard and never complains about it. I think I complain about him working hard, long hours more than he does! Anyway, I just had to share.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Minnesota Friends

This weekend, Sean and I hung out with one of my friends from my old job and her husband. They flew out on Saturday to see Wicked in the afternoon and called us up after that to have some dinner and visit for a few hours. We took them to a great Italian place for dinner, and then we walked around near their hotel. It was so nice to see a friend from home. I miss all my friends from my old job. We had a really good group of co-workers. Sean and I had a great time!!

 Mary and I

Arlis and Mary

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Christmas 2008

Since Sean did not have any consecutive days off in a row at Christmastime, we were not able to go home and see both of our families. We expected this when we first moved down here, so earlier in the year my family bought tickets on the train from St. Cloud, MN to Chicago.

Their travel experience left something to be desired on both the trip out and the trip back (they were delayed four hours out after having to drive to St. Paul to leave and seven hours back), but once they were here, we had a wonderful time with them.

They arrived on Christmas eve, and we went directly from Union Station to Greektown to have a hearty dinner of yummy food. Christmas day is also my mom's birthday, so our tradition is that we open gifts on Christmas eve, and she opens her birthday gifts on Christmas day. We scrapped that this year and just opened everything late on the 24th into the 25th. 

The next day, we lounged around in our pj's and had a leisurely morning. It was my first day hosting Christmas dinner, so I did my first turkey (with lots of help from my dad) and fixin's, along with pumpkin and cherry pies. 

On the 26th, Erin and Chris were able to come and visit for a few hours on their way from Minnesota to Indiana. The novel gift this year was a fancy similar-to-a-French-press coffee extravaganza that my brother got for my mom. Now she truly is a coffee snob. It did make wonderful coffee, though; all the bitterness was taken away. We had her make many a cup throughout the course of their stay. 

After another leisurely morning on the 27th, Sean and I drove my family to Union Station to catch the train. Amtrak did not get any points for their communication skills, and they waited from 1:30 in the afternoon until about 8pm before their train left. This was incredibly frustrating, but what made it more so was that no one would give them a straight answer about when they were going to leave. We could have picked them up again and made another day of it if we had known it would be that long. Warning to all train travelers in the winter - Don't do it. 

Despite the travel hassles, Sean and I were happy to have such an enjoyable Christmas for our first major holiday away from Minnesota!

Holiday Fun in Chicago

There is so much fun stuff to do in this city! When we first moved here, I discovered that my favorite singer, Sarah Brightman, was going to be having a concert in December. Sean and I went on December 4th, and it was fantastic - the best concert that I have ever been to (and I have even been to two other ones of hers)! Sean was even quite impressed. Here is a picture of her.

Later in the month, we decided that we wanted to go to a Christmas play. We found this little theater on the North Side that was in their last year of a production called The Christmas Schooner. It was a musical made about the true story of a group of men in the late 1800's who sailed down Lake Michigan to Chicago to bring Christmas trees to the people living in the city. This went on for a few years before the original schooner went down in a storm on the way to deliver the trees. Other captains rallied to the cause, and this tradition continued for about 25 years. The theater was tiny, so we were right up there in the action. It was wonderful.

We also went to the Christkindlmarket, which is a German tradition here. German vendors come from all over, even Germany, and sell ornaments, food, drinks, and various trinkets in outdoor tents in a plaza near downtown. It was warm enough to be raining, so we bundled up and tried to stay under the shelters. We listened to some German music for a while and drank hot spiced wine, while we wandered the festival. Here is a picture of us posing by the giant Christmas tree set up near the festivities. 

Thanksgiving 2008

This entry is really late, I know, but I was anti-blog for a while there because my pictures would not load in a timely manner. New year - new resolution not to let the slowness of the picture-loading experience ruin my blogging fun. Now to play catch-up...

Holidays away from home for the first time are interesting. We were sad that we did not get to spend as much time with our families as we would have liked, but considering Sean's residency schedule, we are thankful for what we were able to do. We got to see Sean's family for Thanksgiving and mine for Christmas!! That is a lot during intern year...

Thanksgiving this year (last year?) was a whirlwind but definitely worth it. Sean actually had off for a few days, so we drove back to Minnesota to visit his family. 

On our arrival, Sean dropped me off at a restaurant in St. Louis Park while he arranged to pick up Varsana and Malia (his brother Jamie's girls) to take them with us to his parent's house. I got to steal a little time to see my friend Allison, who I had not seen in almost six months!

The next day, we all drove to Sean's Aunt Mickey's house for a scrumptious Thanksgiving dinner.

We left on Friday morning early and arrived home in time for Sean to take a nap before working on Friday night. Lots of driving around and crunched schedules was easily forgotten by a time of good food and fellowship.