Year of the Shark- January Recap

A full month has passed since I declared 2018 The Year of the Shark time flies when you’re busy sharkin’. Looking back, I feel like I’ve actually accomplished a lot over the past month. Here’s a recap of what I’ve been up to.

I took the GRE. While working on grad school applications, I just decided to take the plunge and take the GRE so I would have scores if I need them. I signed up and gave myself a whopping six days of prep time to re-learn all of the high school algebra and SAT vocab that I haven’t used in 15 years. But I took it, I did well, and I was very happy with my results.

I passed my CEN. Apparently January was the month of test taking for me, because once I took the GRE, I started studying for my Emergency Nursing Certification.  Again, I didn’t give myself nearly enough prep time for the test, but I wanted to take it by the end of the month to hopefully include the certification on NP apps due at the beginning of February.  I studied feverishly for about a week, took the test, and passed- barely, but I passed! Phew! I’m off booze at the moment, so I indulged in a celebratory pizza in lieu of a cocktail, with my Mom.

Mom came to visit! It’s always a highlight of any month when Hazel is in town. Unfortunately, this time I was hunkered down studying for the CEN, but she kept me supplied with cups of tea while I trudged through page after page of the intricacies of emergency nursing. She also did some serious organizing, painting, yard clean up, and of course, spoiled the Ginger Hounds.



I went to a last minute Mardi Gras Ball, which is always a fun time. A bunch of my friends were going and a last-minute ticket was offered to me, so I snagged it. My friend Diane even had an extra dress that just happened to fit me- it was meant to be!


Terry, myself, and Jenn



Louisiana froze. Like, really froze. This is a big deal for us southern residents. We had freezing rain that left a solid inch of ice over everything, and then a pretty sprinkling of snow on top of that. Our temps stayed below freezing for about 48 hours, which has to be some kind of record for us, as usually if we get any kind of wintery precipitation, it is gone within the hour. Needless to say, this northern girl was loving it. Alas, although I fared well, it was not all fun and games for many, as freezing temps were accompanied by freezing (and busting!) pipes, school closures, road closures, and a citywide boil-water advisory for 3 days. The Ginger Hounds loved the cold weather and the crisp smells of winter, something they don’t get to experience too often.


Ruby and Pepper in Louisiana snow









Now looking forward to February, there is lots coming up. Mardi Gras is coming which means GLITTER, GLITTER, GLITTER! (Have you ever googled how to glitter your dog? Because I have…). NP applications will be submitted, hopefully I will figure out my triathlon schedule for the upcoming months, and I’m sure there will be some adventures with the Hounds.

Until then, keep sharking, my friends!

Year of the Shark

When I was a kid, I used to love going to the local Chinese restaurant and reading the back of the paper placemat that showed a diagram of the Chinese Zodiac. Beside each zodiac sign was a list of attributes assigned to each zodiac sign. Ox: dependable, hardworking, stubborn, intelligent, loving. Rabbit: stubborn, loving, hardworking, intelligent, dependable. Snake: intelligent, hardworking, loving, stubborn, dependable. You get the idea. Then they would list your best love matches- Pig + Goat (boring), Monkey + Rabbit (sounds like a magic show act), and Tiger + Dragon (now that is a bad-ass power couple!). Each zodiac sign comes around every 12 years making each new year The Year of the _______. This year I’m so excited that it’s finally the Year of the Shark!!

Yes, I know, there isn’t actually a shark in the Chinese Zodiac, and it is actually the Year of the Dog (which I love), but to me, it’s the Year of the Shark, I have declared it so. Why the Year of the Shark, you ask? Well I got my inspiration from one of the silly internet memes I saw on Facebook (Mr. Big posted) a month or so ago.

For some reason, I just loved it. January 1, 2018 was a Monday this year, which I felt made the meme all the more applicable as my inspiration for this new year. I pondered on what the attributes of the Shark zodiac sign might be if there really was one. Shark: strong, vulnerable, motivated, intense, spirited, and complex. I thought that seemed accurate.

As I continue to make some changes in my life and lifestyle this new year, I decided to forego resolutions (because, let’s be real, they are mostly bullshit) and just aim for a better outlook and presence in my life. For me, that means stop making excuses, stop settling for mediocrity, let go of apathy, set attainable goals, explore new expressions of myself, become comfortably uncomfortable as I stretch out of my safe zone, and allow my well-bring to be my main focus. Basically, be more sharky.

So that’s it. 2018 is going to be my Year of the Shark. Even though sharkin’ ain’t easy, it has to be done, and I’m ready to get to it.