Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Another day at the station...

All right, so today I went on another ride-along! This time I went with station #10, and we got 4 calls altogether. All of them were elderly patients; our first call was a lady who was complaining of trouble breathing, so they sent her to the hospital. Our second call was a man who just didn't feel well and also had trouble breathing, so they sent him to the hospital for further testing. Our third call was a women who had fallen in her kitchen. Her hip was fractured and they sent her to the hospital. And our last call was for a man's father whose feeding tube had come out. He was also taken to the hospital.

Overall, the calls weren't adrenaline pumping, but I got to see the firefighters put in a few IV's, and also see how they interacted with the different patients and each other. We also got to play frisbee with station #7 (I did a little better this time!), workout in the weight room, and eat some more delicious food. I'm beginning to think that pineapple may be a firehouse favorite, because last time and then today there has been copious amounts of pineapple for all to enjoy, whether by itself, in a fruit salad, on a sandwich, or grilled on a shish kebab. So amazing!

...So what did I take away from today? I learned how to take patient vitals, how to start weigh-training, and I had a few invaluable conversations with the woman firefighter at the station. I also enjoyed just joking around with the guys, and being able to get another glimpse into firefighting. I'm kind of sad right now, because this will be my last ride-along until I get back from Africa, but I'm glad that I had the opportunity! Definitely a good way to spend 13 hours of my day. I'm praising God that it went well and that we were all kept safe. What a great time.

Countdown to Africa: 18 days! (How can that be possible?!)
Outside Temp: 73°F (Today we had beautiful weather. Perfect day.)

Verse of the Day:
With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!
Psalm 119:10

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Lil Louie

As made known by the title of this post, there is a certain lobster named Lil Louie in my life. He was given to me by a friend who just recently visited Boston, where she acquired a Mobster Lobster named Louie, and so I named this much smaller lobster after him. He is a wonderful little addition to my life, and I just thought he was too cute not to mention here.

Isn't he cute?

Anyway, in other events, I am really enjoying not being in school right now! I can't really say I'm less busy, but I'm at least busy with more things that I enjoy. Africa is only three weeks away, and it's kind of crazy to think that in so short a time I'll be halfway across the world. It sort of feels surreal right now! I've been "practice packing" recently, and it looks like I'll be able to get everything I need into that 65 liter backpack, and possible some extra stuff. We'll see. I'm also keeping in mind that I'll be having to carry this around. Last time I checked it was 25lb, but that was before I had gotten a lot more of the things I need to bring...so I'm not sure what it weighs right now. I'll get back to you on that!

Something else I'm excited about is that my family is going to Colorado at the end of this week. My uncle and his family live there, and they actually flew in our girl cousin to AZ and she's staying with us this week and then we'll take her home when we go on Saturday. We're going to drive, so it won't be a quick flight, but I'm looking forward to the trip! I've never been to Colorado before, and it looks so beautiful. I'll definitely post a few photos once we get there.

Countdown to Africa: 21 days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Outside Temp: 62°F (I was so surprised, this afternoon it actually started to get chilly! I opened my window and everything! Beautiful weather today)

Verse of the Day:
My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.
1 John 3:18

Monday, May 17, 2010

What could be better?

I'm eating a bowl of Fruit Loops right now, and I've realized that they bring me a lot of joy and contentment. They come in all different colors, have just the right amount of sweetness, and they look like mini-donuts. AND you can eat them with or without milk and they're still great! I think a truly good cereal is one that you don't need milk with to enjoy. Fruit Loops are at the top of my list, but Frosted Flakes also make a delicious dry snack. Honeycombs are also pretty good dry, but I prefer them with milk.

Haha - I do realize that I've just revealed to you that I love sugary-junk cereal, but just for the record, I also eat the healthy stuff as well. I just enjoy these ones more when I can have them. Anyway, the Fruit Loops are gone now, and I've got to get back to the real world, so catch ya later! Just wanted to share my small revelation.

Countdown to Africa: 27 days!
Outside Temp: 92°F (Yes, it is finally starting to really heat up. Haven't broken 100 yet, but I think that day is not too far off!)

Verse of the Day:
But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
Hebrews 11:6

Monday, May 10, 2010

It's over!!!!

Today I attended class for the last time this semester, and completed my last final! So far I have A's in three of my classes, so if this last final checks out, I'll have gotten all A's this semester, and be able to keep my 4.0!! I'm so excited, I almost don't even know what to do with the free time! My two sisters and I started a zoo challenge on Zoo Tycoon 2 to see who can create the best zoo by the end of the month (exciting, I know), and I'm looking forward to some relax/reading time, and more time with friends!

I just wanted to post real quick because I'm so happy to be FREE! I've got a Fire drill in half an hour, though, so I'm going to cut the freedom-celebration-post short. Have a great day!

Outside Temp: 80°F (It says 80, but I think it's a lie. It feels like it's in the 90's out there!)

Countdown to Africa: 34 days!

Verse of the Day:
By humility and the fear of the Lord Are riches and honor and life.
Proverbs 22:4

Friday, May 7, 2010

A day at the Station

Today I went on my first ride-along! I rode with station #7 at a Fire Department out of town, because currently I'm not allowed to ride with my own city's station until I get up to a higher level in the Explorer Program I'm in. I'll be up-front: we only got one call the whole time I was there (and it ended up being nothing), but I had a great time regardless and it was a good opportunity to meet new people, expand my contacts, and have a closer look into what a day might be like as a firefighter.

To start off the morning, I left a little earlier (6:30) so that I could get Jamba Juice before I needed to be at the station. My current favorite is Aloha Pineapple, and it was delicious! If you've never had Jamba Juice, I highly recommend going there and getting the Aloha Pineapple smoothie.

I arrived at the station a little before 8:00, thanks to the handy GPS system my dad let me borrow. I met the crew, signed a form, and then got to be a part of their life for a day. The captain was straightforward and let me know that they were a pretty slow station, and that they'd go about their daily routine and I could jump right in or just observe. All of them were really nice and made me feel at home. After all equipment was checked off, we left in the truck to go meet Station #10 at a grass field nearby to play some Frisbee. Apparently this is something they try to do often, not only to get in some cardio but also to connect with other firefighters in the area. I'd never played frisbee before, so I tried my best but I wasn't very good, and half the time I was rather afraid of getting completely crushed by a few of them. They're all so competitive! But it was a lot of fun. I felt like I was getting the hang of it near the end, so next time I'll be ready to play harder!

We shopped at Basha's for lunch. Everyone chips in $5 a meal, and we had grilled chicken sandwiches on bagels with delicious melted cheese and pineapple inside, and "the concoction" - which is a beautiful fruit-filled concoction that I plan to make again sometime! Yummy! Right as we were finishing lunch, a call came in. Someone had seen a man fall off his bike and hit his head, but when we got there he was walking around fine and just had a little dust on his shirt.

Back at the station, we pretty much relaxed the rest of the time I was there. I got to have some conversation with one of the firefighters while two of the others watched a movie. After awhile, we all started watching the movie. It was one of those scare-flicks, and was definitely a bit disturbing, but I decided I would just watch it unless it got inappropriate. It had some violent parts, and really was just weird...definitely would not have picked that out to watch. After it was over we watched an episode of 24, which was much more "normal." Then I had to leave at 3:00, because I had class at 4:30. So...overall there wasn't as much action as I had been hoping, but it was a nice day and I had a good time. I'd definitely do a ride-along with them again, but maybe I'll try to get a busier station for my next one.

Countdown to Africa: 37 days!!!!!!!!!!

Outside Temp: 78°F

Verse of the Day:

Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and depart from evil. It will be health to your flesh, And strength to your bones.
Proverbs 3:7-8

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Fire Explorer Academy

Well, I was able to finish breaking in my boots yesterday at the 7th annual Fire Explorer Academy! I've been a Fire Explorer for 5 months now, so this was my first time being able to participate in an event like this and I had a blast! It was a great opportunity to learn new things, get more experience, and meet more explorers from other departments. I'm already looking forward to next year's Academy!

Altogether, the event lasted about as long as the sun lasted. I got there at 7:30am and didn't leave until about 8:00pm. Among the day's activities were: ventilation, EMS scenario, search and rescue drills, feeling the heat in the burn trailer, extinguishing car fires, and fighting the fire dragon. We also did a "Make and Break" competition, and a "Bucket Brigade" competition at midday, which gave us the chance to cool down a bit! It wasn't too hot out - in fact, God blessed us with a really nice breeze - but after being in turnouts on and off for several hours, some cold water dumped on my head felt really nice!

The entire day was just another glimpse into the hard work that it takes to do some of the tasks firefighters do, but also the reward of the hard work if you don't give up. I'm definitely not the strongest, or the best at everything, but it's nice to be a part of a team and see improvement in the areas that I'm not very good at yet. I'm still not 100% sure if firefighting is the thing for me, but it's something I'm very interested in, and I want to learn more about it. I'm still praying about it and sort of just getting my feet wet for now. Being an Explorer is definitely helping me get a more "inside" view and I'm hoping to stay in the program until I'm too old (I'm pretty sure cut-off age is 20 or 21, so I've got a few years left).

I wish I had some more pictures to put on here, but I didn't get a chance to take any. A few of the moms took some, though, so hopefully next meeting I'll be able to get a CD and possibly put some more up.

Countdown to Africa: 42 days

Outside Temp: 81°F (It's super windy and we're having major dust flying through! Not my favorite weather today)

Verse of the Day:

"A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another."
John 13:34-35