Monday, September 2, 2013

Hello again...

Well, once again I let my busy schedule interfere with my blogging. Hopefully I can get back to this on a steady basis now.

Alyssa and I are both in our final year of school now. Alyssa finished her first rotation and is now on her second rotation at the Jackson Prison. I am 2 weeks away from finishing my second rotation and getting ready to start my third at Kroger Pharmacy in Okemos.

We just recently moved to the Lansing area (Leslie) to be closer to our rotation sites. I never thought I would miss Big Rapids but I kind of do. There wasn't always much to do there but we had called it home since we got married so it was special to us. We are getting used to living closer to big cities now, we've managed to go to a Lansing Lugnuts baseball game and down to The Big House in Ann Arbor to watch my Wolverines (I spent a couple years at U of M in Flint) take on Alyssa's alma matter, the Central Michigan Chippewas. We both had a blast and Michigan won so everything was perfect.

My post wouldn't be complete without talking about our dog. Stafford is getting to be quite a smart, handsome little guy. Once we moved to Leslie, we had to find new places for Staff to play since there's no dog park in the area. Our new favorite place to go is the soccer field a block away from our new apartment. Staff loves to show-off his frisbee catching skills but often forgets to bring it back to us. Oh well, we still have a few things to work on with him. Also, our windows at our place sit close to the ground so Staff can sit and people-watch whenever he wants to. It's pretty cute to see him watching for us out the window whenever we are coming back from school or the store, he gets so excited. We love our little pup dearly and couldn't imagine our family without him. We love him so much Alyssa has been looking into adopting a little girl Mini Aussie for Staff to play with. We'll just have to wait and see when that happens.

Besides that, everything is life as usual. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

It's Been Awhile

Time flies when you're having fun. It also flies when you're crazy busy.

Alyssa and I have been very busy since school started back up again all the way back in August. Alyssa has been buried in clinic hours, papers, and other coursework while I've been buried in coursework and working at Rite Aid.

There are only a few weeks left till yet another semester is wrapped up and we are both ever so much closer to graduation.

After this school year ends, both Alyssa and I will be done with class work and will be heading out on our rotations. Alyssa and her fellow optometry classmates just finished choosing/battling for their future rotation sites.

Alyssa ended up getting placed here in Big Rapids at MCO for her first 3 month rotation. She also has 3 month rotations at Jackson State Prison and at Grand Rapids VA. She was bummed that she couldn't get all her rotations in Grand Rapids so we wouldn't have to move every 3 months, but she ended up with 3 very good rotation sites/opportunities.

As for myself, I have to take 6 six week rotations this coming year. I just sent my preferences in and am hoping that I can get placed in the same city as Alyssa or at least within driving distance so we won't have to live apart from each other. I will update on here when I hear back from the College of Pharmacy as to where I'll be going on rotation.

Well that's enough talking about school. Stafford, our pup, is just about full grown and has turned out to be a very good dog. He is incredibly spoiled, he even gets to sleep on the bed every once in a while.

Overall, I would say that we are doing very well and are feeling like a big happy family.

Saturday, May 12, 2012


Well, summer is here. Alyssa had one week of freedom before classes started back up for the summer so we decided to take advantage of the free time by taking a trip to the ballpark. We headed south the Fifth Third Ballpark to watch the West Michigan Whitecaps. It was the first perfect day of the summer, sun in the sky and no clouds. We actually managed to get a little sunburned.

We got first row seats right next to the home side dugout. We were so close to the action that an errant throw to 1st base almost landed right in our laps. We got to munch on ballpark food and even shared a massive Fifth Third Burger. If you've never heard of it, you should google it, it is a massive burger.

We enjoyed the game. It was a perfect getaway during our week off.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Getting Back To Blogging

Wow, time really does fly by. Alyssa and I have both been busy with school and work and I have completely neglected this blog. Well, I'll just catch up on everything really quick.

We got back from Jamaica around 2 am Christmas morning. We were exhausted so we slept in late.  Alyssa made cinnamon rolls and then we opened up gifts.  We had a laid back day and it was perfect.  Over the next week we were able to go see both of our families and enjoy the holidays with them as well.

Yummy Cinnamon Rolls
Alyssa and Bert the Farting Hippo from NCIS

My Michigan shirt and new work gloves

The next big event after Christmas was Alyssa's White Coat ceremony. The optometry students receive their white coats just before they start seeing patients in the clinic, so this ceremony is just a celebration for the students before they dive into the next part of the schooling.  Alyssa's parents and her brother were able to come down to celebrate with her.  It was a nice ceremony and I would have to say, Alyssa looks very good in her white coat.

MCO Class of 2014

Alyssa with her proud family

The next part of our life was somewhat unexpected. We went down to Holly, MI to watch Easton (Alyssa's little brother) except his blackbelt in Tang Soo Do (sorry if the spelling is wrong).  It was a lot of fun and he did a great job.  On our way home to Big Rapids we stopped at the mall in Flint, MI to get Alyssa's wedding ring checked up and polished. We decided to check out The Family Puppy. We had been looking for an Australian Shepherd but knew that we couldn't have a full size dog in our apartment. To our surprise, there was a Mini Australian Shepherd in one of the kennels. As soon as Alyssa saw him her heart just melted and I knew that we were going to take him home. After filling out the paperwork, we were on the road with the newest member to our family. Alyssa let me name hime, so I named him Stafford, after Detroit Lions quarterback Matt Stafford. I know, it's a dorky reason to name him that, but it was the only name I came up with that Alyssa liked.

Alyssa and Stafford watching TV the next morning after bringing him home.

He looked like a little Gremlin when he was a puppy

First Family Photo (I don't think Staff wanted his picture taken)

Well, he has grown up pretty quick. He knows a bunch of tricks and is a pretty good dog, even though we have a lot to teach him still.

He doesn't look like a puppy anymore, but he's still cute.

Look at these two cuties.

Well, that about wraps up everything since Christmas. Hopefully I'll be able to keep up with this blog now that school is winding down for the semester.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Daylight Come And We Don't Want To Go Home

We are packing and getting ready to leave hot and sunny Jamaica to go back to cold and snowy Michigan.  As much as we love it here, we do want to head back home.  Well, before we head to the airport to wait for our 4+ hour flight, let me give a little recap of yesterday's activities.

We started off by heading down to the coffee shop.  Alyssa had a little headache the day before (probably due to the fact that she's a caffeine addict and went one morning without her coffee).  She ordered a Cold White Satin and I had a Jamaican Coffee.  Alyssa took one sip and said," This is the best coffee I have ever had."  And I would have to admit, my cup was also the best I have ever had.  Maybe being down in paradise makes things seem nicer, or it was the splash of rum added to the joe.  Well either way, it was good.

Alyssa's Cold White Satin

After our coffee, we headed for the beach.  We just lounged half the day away and even fell asleep on on one of the beach beds that was steps away from the ocean.

We also went kayaking again.  This time we got a little more adventurous and went out past one of the shelves.  When we looked down, the seafloor dropped straight down and all we could see was black water.  Alyssa got a little scared so we headed back to shore over the coral reef beds.  I even managed to get my kayak wedged on top of part of the coral and was able to push myself off before the waves knocked me over.

We didn't bring our cameras with us because we figured we had enough pictures from the days prior and just wanted to go have fun without worrying about them going missing.  Luckily, the resort has photographers that wander the beaches and snap photos of couples.  We went down to the photo shop later in the evening and purchased a few photos to take home with us.

Here are a few of the pictures.

Look how clear that water is

Relaxing in the bright blue waters of Jamaica

Jazzed up for dinner

We decided to have a lazy day to cap off our honeymoon.  We did get dressed up and go out to a lobster buffet dinner which was delicious.  Then we sat out on our balcony for several hours just talking and enjoying the beautiful weather.

We ordered some late night room service (hamburgers and nachos) and called it a night.

Now we're all packed and ready to go.  Just going to wander the resort until checkout time.  Hope to be in the States around 7:30 to 8:00.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Bird's Eye View

I'm just going to do a recap of yesterday's fun since we were too tired last night to post.

We started the day off by hitting the workout facility on the far end of the resort.  Alyssa did some cardio work on the elliptical while I did my arms and chest workout.

Afterwards we went down to the beach to look for starfish.  A couple we had met told us that we could pick them up out of the water and that they would barely move.  So that's what we did.

Alyssa holding a starfish.

We also shot some video of us picking us the starfish on our GoPro underwater camera, but for some reason I can't upload it on the wifi here at the resort.

After playing with the starfish, we went down to the water sports entertainment center.  This is where you can do things like go on glass-bottomed boats, scuba dive, etc.  Scuba diving was out of our price range so we decided to go parasailing, and I'm so glad we did.  It was a rush being lifted off the boat, it was even more of a rush when the boat crew dunked us in the ocean before lifting us up in the air.  The view was amazing.

Getting dunked in the ocean before lifting off

We were so high in the air

The boat crew was very funny and got some pretty good pictures of us.  We also took the GoPro camera with us and have some pretty cool footage of the whole ride.

Once back ashore we decided to try out some kayaking.  We raced from one side of the resort to the other and then rode some waves.  It was a lot of fun and a good workout too.

We spent the rest of the day laying around the beach and playing with some fish over by one of the seawalls.

When the day was winding down, we got ready for dinner.  We had a little time to kill so we went around the resort taking pictures.  Here are a few.

Alyssa was very happy when a member of the resort staff came up to her and told her she looked like a princess.  Then he told me I looked good too because he didn't want me to feel left out.

Fountain with restaurants and shopping center behind

Part of the beach where we found all the starfish

She made a heart out of the palm tree branches

We made our way over to dinner at the Hibachi Grill.  It's the best restaurant to go to on the resort and the only one you need a reservation for to eat at.

Our grill-master for the night

The staff twirl their spatulas, sind, dance, and tell jokes during the entire meal.  We were laughing all the way through dinner.  Our favorite joke was when he asked us if we wanted boneless chicken, we said yes, then he cracked a few eggs on the grill.  He just laughed and said, "Look, boneless chicken."

We started with cocktails and spicy soup.  then we watched the show until the meal was ready.  It had beef, chicken, shrimp, rice, and veggies and was absolutely delicious.

After dinner, we were both exhausted from the busy day and called it a night.  We both love it here and wish that today was not our last full day here, but we're going to enjoy it and get ready to head back to the States tomorrow.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Good Morning, Paradise

Gorgeous view from our balcony this morning

We got a good nights sleep and were excited to start the day.  It's pretty easy to get up in the morning when you're in such a beautiful place.

Little lizard outside our hotel

First, we headed for World Cafe for breakfast.  We were greeted at the door with mimosas.  Seems like we are given champagne everywhere we go.  We had a quick buffet breakfast and headed for the beach.

Alyssa told me that she wanted a day where we could just lay on the beach all day and do nothing else, so that's exactly what we did.  We got down to the beach around 10:30am and didn't leave until 3:30pm.  We definitely got a lot of sun.  We went to the pool for a little while after that.  There was a float up lounge/bar in the pool so we hung out there for a bit and mingled with another couple from Jacksonville, FL.

Well, it's not a good trip until something embarrassing happens.  As we were leaving the pool we had to cross the grass to get to the sidewalk by the beach.  We were jumping from tile to tile across the lawn.  Alyssa jumped over to the sidewalk and then heard a thud beside her.  Yep, when I jumped my wet feet slipped out from under me and and I landed flat on my back.  To make things worse, there apparently was a baseball umpire staying at the resort because just as I hit my back a man across the pool repeatedly yelled out, "Safe" waving his arms back and forth in front of him.  Alyssa was laughing and all I could do was laugh as well.  Looking back, it is pretty funny.

We walked out on one of the seawalls that protruded out from the beach.  There was a little bench at the end that we sat on for a while and just watched the waves roll in.  We watched some crabs shuffle around the rocks below.  One actually crawled into a styrofoam cup to hide from us.  Just as we were leaving Alyssa spotted something.  deep in between two giant rocks that were part of the seawall was a piece of paper.  I reached down and grabbed it.  It was a slightly weathered $50 bill.  We've had some really good luck ever since we had that flight debacle on Monday.

We went back to the room, took a nap, and got ready for dinner.  The resort has numerous international restaurants to choose from.  We went to the Jamaican restaurant last night, so we decided on Italian tonight.  The food was great.  Bruschetta, tomato mozzarella caprese, and spicy tomato penne for Alyssa and calamari, ceasar salad, and linguine for myself.

All dressed up for dinner.

After dinner, we did some sidewalk shopping.  Alyssa picked out a painting that was made by a local artist and paid for it with the cash we found in the seawall.  We still had some cash left after the purchase so we tried out our luck at the little casino.  We jumped on a black jack machine and played for a long time.  We broke even, so we were both pretty happy.  Then we played a little pool in the gaming center.

Alyssa is definitely a pool shark.

When we got back to our room, Alyssa made herself a nice bubble-bath while I got this post together.

Alyssa's bubble-bath in the giant garden tub

Today was a ton of fun and we hope to have even more tomorrow.