Sunday, January 23, 2011

Superbowl Bound!


Matt and I enjoyed watching the game from the warmer climate of Mississippi, but we definitely missed being on frozen tundra ground today!!

Glad I was born and raised a Cheesehead!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Study in Studying

It has been about 3 years since I have had to study for school. So it has been real fun trying to get back into that academic mindset. Especially now that I'm a graduate student (in a rigorous pre-medical master's program), I feel like I need to kick up my study habits and work like I've never worked before. But some things just don't change:

1.) I hate studying in libraries. The ambience is just not conducive to my ability to focus. Probably because it is quiet...too quiet.

2.) I use the highlighter sparingly. Nothing is worse than buying a used book for class, flipping through pages, and seeing that EVERY paragraph is highlighted. It's a tool to attract your eyes to something important, not cause neon blindness while reading.

3.) I like to be comfortable when studying. Not "lay in bed" comfortable, but comfortable enough that I'm not wiggling around in my seat every two seconds because my butt hurts. (another reason for #1)

4.) I take notes while I'm reading. I then compare these notes to my lecture notes. Double your pleasure, double your fun...double your ability to learn crazy concepts and piece it all together and remember it for the rest of your life.

5.) The iPad has made my note-taking a highly organized process, thanks to an elephant.

6.) I need to listen to music or have white noise in the background. Call me weird, but it helps me focus more by having something to "tune out."

7.) Munchies are a necessity...if I forget some noms, it's just as bad as forgetting my textbook. They don't call it brain food for nothin'.

What are your study habits/quirks?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

If this song is all i have now / it would fall way short of you

Whenever I need new music to load my iTunes library, I ask my brother and sister. They both have great tastes in music and stay up to date with all the new artists and releases (where I just don't have the time to keep up, and besides, I could listen to Beethoven, the Beatles, Sondheim, and Chicago for the rest of my life)

So during winter break, I commandeered my brothers iTunes in search for some new jams. And boy, did I find it!

Needtobreathe has been around for a while, but being new to me, I had to listen and get all of their albums. They have such strong Christian lyrics without being too "preachy". And how can one resist that folk rock sound? Here's three of my favorites, one from each of their albums. And look! One of their tunes is the title of my blog!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Ice Ice Baby

I was so excited for my first day of classes tomorrow. But they have been cancelled due to severe winter weather here in Mississippi. Severe weather, you say? But isn't the south supposed to be warm and pleasant? Wasn't this week supposed to be the week we got settled in to our new environment?

Well, after a wonderful day yesterday (congratulations Dan and Annika!), we had a day full of traveling woes. Our flight was totally packed, so some carryon rollers had to be gate checked, so we said goodbye to my bag until we reached Jackson (...remember this). We flew from Milwaukee to Atlanta with no problem, but had a 3 hour layover until our flight to Jackson. We waited and waited, and our flight ended up being about 30min late due to some crew members who were running late off their previous flight. We get onboard, and up up up we went into the winter storm system that is sweeping the south. It was the bumpiest flight I've ever been on. Actually, it was quite similar to Disneyworld's Tower of Terror. We landed in Jackson safely, but were not able to leave the plane. The crew was unable to attach the jetway to the plane because we were pulled up too far. And the plane couldn't go into reverse, so we had to wait for some poor cold crew members to tow the plan back a few feet so the jetway would reach. Also, someone "tripped" on the main power cord so all the lights and power in the plane shut off for a few minutes - how strange!! Finally, after about 30 min, we were able to leave. Remember my checked carryon bag? We went to the baggage claim and waited for it, but it never showed up. Finally, after all other bags were claimed, we went to the lost luggage office. And lo and behold, my bag was sitting outside the office, no one watching it, it was just sitting we grabbed it and headed toward the shuttle which would take us to the parking lot. Remember the winter storm I mentioned? We didn't know what to expect, since we are from WI after all, and these southerners don't know what "winter" really means. But upon arriving to the parking lot, we found our car looking like this:

Thank goodness for a quick defrost and our heavy duty Wisconsin ice scraper! As we were pulling out of the lot, the machine wouldn't read our credit card, probably due to the cold and wetness, so we had to drive to the security office to pay in person. Gah!

Finally, 2 hours later than expected, we reached the home where we had been staying before we flew back to WI. Our puppies were happy to see us, and I was happy to see them. We can finally RELAX.

We are now all snuggled together watching Star Trek V and trying to stay warm. Since I have no class tomorrow, we will be cleaning our new apartment and unpacking and trying to continue adjusting to this strange new world called "the south."

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Hey Y'all!

Last Friday we began our road trip down to our new home state of Mississippi. We packed up a 26' moving truck with all our belongings (piano included) and began our 900+ mile journey.

If you follow me on Twitter, you got live updates, but here is a quick recap:
-hit lots of fog in IL
-drove through St. Louis just in time to see NYE fireworks
-arrived at hotel at 3am in Sikeston, MO where we received a 10% AARP
-hit a gas station overhang with the top of the moving truck in West Memphis, AR
-arrived to our apartment in Clinton, MS around 7pm
-discovered we had no power and no water in the apartment (in WI where it's cold, landlords are required to keep utilities on in unoccupied rentals due to the cold - not so in the south...)
-stayed in a hotel for 2 nights, were told utilities wouldn't be turned on until the 6th
-we were invited to stay with the woman from the church committee who interviewed Matt in her amazing country home
-our doggies JoJo and McGhee are too dumb to realize we've left "home" and are still just happy as can be
-attended Wednesday night service at the church Matt is applying for the worship leader and youth leader positions
-Matt is now in a "temporary" position until the church body takes a vote in 2 weeks, and all seems to be go for launch - praise the Lord!

We are now waiting in the airport to fly back to WI for the weekend to attend our good friends' wedding. I'm excited to see family and friends and familiar roads, but not excited for the snow and cold (it is currently sunny and 50 degrees here in Jackson).

My plan to have the apartment all organized and pretty-fied was foiled by the lack of power and water, so poor Matt will have to take charge of that on Monday when I start classes for my graduate program at MC. It is definitely different here in the south, but once we get settled and more familiar with our surroundings I think we will feel more like we are "home".