Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Iowa City Surprises

One afternoon we noticed the Fox News van in our parking lot. We also saw this next door:

Turns out a guy was arrested for groping and stalking girls. This is the girl that called the police. Gross.

The ACT is in Iowa City! Who knew?

Fast Sunday Food Extravaganza!

Last Fast Sunday we made the horrible mistake of looking through cook books on Fast Sunday. End result: one apple pie, brownies, cashew brittle, and a HUGE loaf of Challah (a yummy Jewish bread). Oh and then there was also dinner. It was SO fun to make, and the smells were awesome in our little apartment. A little too awesome.

We made the Challah in our bread machine. We thought it was going to come out of the bread machine. It was HUGE and very yummy.

Apple pie!
Mint brownie "cupcakes."
Cashew brittle. Yum.

Amana Colonies!

A few weeks ago, we decided we wanted to do a little Iowa exploring! We had heard about the Amana Colonies ( a old German communal community), so we thought we'd check it out! It reminded us a lot of Garner Village up in South Jordan, Utah. It had cute shops, and it was quiet and relaxing just to walk around the different buildings.

I just thought this house was really cute.

A view down the road. There was a fudge shop, chocolate shop, bakery, toy store (Andrew liked that one), German restaurants, clothing shops, general stores, a winery, and lots of cheese.

Cute buildings.

Us!
We had a lot of fun there! It felt like a relaxing getaway! And it didn't hurt that the weather was beautiful!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Night of Nights

It was a Friday evening. All was well in the Lowe household. Or so we thought.

It was the night before the Iowa State football game and the University of Iowa football game, and it's a big deal. Many people get drunk here, and they were especially drunk on this night, apparently.

Andrew and I went to bed around 11 or 12 Friday night. We were both very tired and fell asleep almost instantly. At about 2:30 AM, however, I was awakened by a loud BANGING on our front door. I woke up Andrew, and he went over to the door to see what was going on. I for sure thought our apartment was going to be broken into, and we would get shot, or something horrible. While Andrew was brave, I just stayed in bed in shock.

Andrew asked them what they wanted, and they said, " Really?!" YES really! What are you doing at our door?! (That's what I thought.) After a while of banging on the door, they moved onto ringing the doorbell for a while. And it wasn't just ringing it every minute, it was every second.

After about 10 minutes, I think they either realized that a) They were drunk and didn't know where they were b) Someone who used to live in our apartment doesn't live here anymore or c) They were bored.

In any case, I'm really glad they finally left. Andrew and I didn't really sleep very well after that-- I was SO scared! When we woke up in the morning, I thought that it was all a dream, because it was SO bizarre. But it wasn't, it was very real.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Andrew's Whitecoat Ceremony!

Well, here is my stud pre-doctor husband.
Every year they put "white coats" on the new medical students as a kind of initiation.
This was at the Old Capital Building. Isn't it gorgeous?!



Andrew before the ceremony. And a bald guy.


Before and after getting his white coat.
Here is Andrew's class. Can you find Andrew?
This week that we had the ceremony was pretty crazy, but when we were sitting there at the ceremony, we felt so grateful to be there! Bring it on University of Iowa, we're ready for you!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

This summer my family got to go to our Monk Family Reunion (on my mom's side). This happens every other summer. Last time we were at the beach, Andrew came down from Maryland to see me...and meet my family for the first time. It was pretty awkward. This time it was WONDERFUL! It was the first time since Natalie and Alex's wedding that we were all together. I am r bummed that I don't have very many pictures from the beach! Here are a few from our family photo shoot:


I guess you could say we inherited our mother's good looks.


Wait for it...


Running action shot.

My family's next Christmas card.


We had a fantastic time!
There were 3 beach houses RIGHT on the beach.
We relaxed, ate, and boogie boarded all day.
We also had a fun skit night, Olympics, music night... so fun.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Summertime, when the living's easy...



YAY! We found our cord to download pictures to our computer! Sorry for the delay. We are having a great time here in Iowa City! Woohoo!

The picture above is of Andrew's family and us in Carthage, IL. On Andrew's family's "trek" out west, they stopped in St. Louis, and we were able to meet up with them there! We stopped in Nauvoo and Carthage while we were down there too. Andrew has some really neat family history there (including Lydia Knight who his little sister, Lydia, is named after), so it was cool to learn more about his ancestors.
Here are some pictures of our summer adventures around the country (They are in reverse order):


After Andrew found out he got into medical school, Andrew's family threw a little celebration party for him including: cake, balloons, and a little kid doctor's kit. Awesome.
Andrew's siblings!
While we were in St. Louis, we met up with our good friends, the Lees. Diana used to be my roommate! We had a lot of fun with them, and even got to indulge in a little Ted Drewes with them-- YUM.
The Arch! It's HUGE!
Andrew as king on his b-day.

My cousins and family also made"Pin the Organ on the Body" and had awesome decorations around the kitchen when we got home to celebrate Andrew getting into medical school. It was GREAT! Pictures hopefully to come soon.
We also got to go on an amazing vacation to North Carolina, and we moved to Iowa, so we'll put up more pictures soon...

Friday, August 27, 2010

Wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles!


Throughout the past few weeks, I've had the song "Miracle of Miracles" from Fiddler on the Roof in my head. Our lives have been INCREDIBLY blessed to say the least. We are officially University of Iowa Hawkeyes! Andrew was the last person accepted this year in the Carver College of Medicine aka MEDICAL SCHOOL. We found out August 12 while we were in St. Louis visiting Andrew's family. Then Andrew started orientation 5 days later. Ah! It's been a whirlwind, but we are so grateful to be here. So here is our epic summer story of how we got here: (WARNING: This is very long, so buckle up!)
SO, around April/May of this year, Andrew had interviewed for medical school at 4 schools, and he was put on the waiting list for all 4 of them-- one in Baltimore, one is St. Louis, one in Milwaukee, and then here. Andrew was number 76 on the waiting list at Iowa, and a lady at the admissions office here said that she thought this list would make it to #86 this year. That was good to hear, but man! How can we make plans with THAT?! We decided we needed a backup plan so we could at least know if we should move or not. So Andrew applyed for the Masters in Public Health at the University of Iowa since he wanted to do that anyways. We figured if he got into that, we knew for sure that we would be moving to Iowa, and if he got into the med school this year, then great! We'd already be set. He was also close on the waiting list at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.
A few weeks later, we heard that he got into the Masters program! Woohoo! We decided that since we knew we'd be moving to either Iowa, for the Masters and maybe the medical school, or Milwaukee if he got in, then we could live with my parents in Minnesota to save some money. They live right in between the two schools! Perfect!
Well, throughout July we started looking for housing down in Iowa, because we hadn't heard anything from either school. Our plan was the Masters for now. We found this GREAT apartment close to campus, and we were going to sign for it on August 1st. We actually found out that we got the apartment the day we got to my family reunion in North Carolina. (Man! I am tired from just writing this, so if you are still reading, wow.) While we were in North Carolina, Andrew was going to work on reapplying for medical school at Iowa for next year. (By the way, applying is no fun, let alone REapplying. Poor Andrew was SO discouraged.) Not a very good vacation.
While we were there, Andrew got a call from the Medical College of Wisconsin. They offerred him a spot in their medical school for NEXT year. Not what we were expecting! We were still so excited to have somewhere to go. We figured that Andrew could work on his masters in Iowa for a year and then go to Milwaukee. WELL, turns out that Andrew's particular track in the Masters program could not be done in one year.
We were so confused. While we were in Utah, we prayed and prayed to know what we should do. We kept feeling good about Iowa, and felt confident moving out to Minnesota for the summer. I had a teaching job all lined up in Utah before moving, and I felt really sad that I could have taught there for another year.
After a while, we tried to see why we were where we were. Maybe we could work and save money! That would be GREAT! Maybe we could go on some trips! We were still pretty stressed about how everything was going to work out, because we were still holding onto Iowa. It was Andrew's first choice of the schools he interviewed at, and we still had hope. We kept wondering why we felt so good about Iowa. PLUS our landlord let us put our apartment in Iowa City on hold until we found out if Andrew got into medical school here. Who does that?! Seriously, we felt so blessed that he let us do that.
Well, right when we were getting used to the idea of Milwaukee, we headed out to St. Louis to meet up with Andrew's family on their way moving to Utah. We had a great time with Andrew's family and extended family. One day, we were both feeling pretty overwhelmed and just plain TIRED of waiting. We driving home from a musuem, and literally RIGHT when we pulled into Andrew's grandparents' driveway, Andrew got a call from the University of Iowa Medical School Admissions. They asked if he would like a spot in their medical school. Um, YES!!
We were shaking and crying, overwhelmed with how blessed we were/are. As we made calls to family, and called our landlord, the song "How Great Thou Art!" was in my head. After all that waiting (10 months to be exact), we finally saw the Lord's plan for us. We got to celebrate with Andrew's family, which was so great! They even gave him a toy doctor's kit!
The Lord answers prayers and has a wonderful plan for all of us. Sometimes it takes A LOT of patience, but when we are willing to wait and put our trust in Him, He is more than ready to POUR out so many blessings. Looking back, things happened when they were supposed to. During the time, we couldn't see why, but now we understand. We know that we are supposed to be here, and we knew way before too. There were times that I felt abandoned and a lone, but we never were. Andrew getting into medical school was 100% a miracle, and it only could have been through the Lord. We've learned so much about having faith and patience.
It has been crazy, and Andrew's been so busy, but we feel so grateful to be here. We knew that if the Lord can get us here, then we'll be taken care of.
I'm so grateful for this experience, and all that I have learned from it. For those people who are going through never ending trials, great or small, the Lord knows us and knows our needs. Trust Him, and He'll make you more happy than you could ever imagine. He is my Rock and my Redeemer. He will guide my life to be something much greater than I could ever plan. It's not easy, but it's worth it. Great things come to those who wait.
And for now, while Andrew works hard at school, I am waiting for my Iowa Teaching License to go through, then I will start substitute teaching! There are plenty of things to unpack and clean as we get settled. I will post pictures soon after I take a little blogging break!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

We're still here!

To those who read this blog, we are still alive!! After a crazy summer, filled with MANY twists and turns, we ended up in Iowa City, Iowa for Andrew to do medical school! More info to follow...

Friday, June 11, 2010

Runaway Frogs

video

So we got some water frogs for my classroom. I would occasionally take them home over the weekend, and Andrew and I noticed these poor frogs trying to dig holes to escape out of their tank. Ha! They will be very let down if they ever dig a hole to the bottom. They must so bored in that little tank. Maybe someday, we'll liberate them.

Graduation, End of School, and Moving On!!

I am a super lazy blogger. I have no excuse! Andrew is graduated, and I am officially done with teaching 3rd grade. We finally know where we are going to go...kind of. We know we are moving. Andrew got into the Master of Public Health program and the University of Iowa--closer to my family. It's our back up plan. We are hoping that Andrew will get into either the medical school in Iowa or Wisconsin later this summer, so we are waiting in Minnesota with my family until we hear. We are SO glad that we can finally make plans to move. Our contract sold unbelievably fast. We feel so blessed! We are also very excited to live with my family for a while--We haven't been there for over a year!!

Cousins John and Andrew with their parents. Woohoo!!
Andrew's family, minus Jacob.
Andrew and his cousin John Peterson (far left), and his brother Matt and sister Lydia after graduation.
Andrew and I before graduation.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Spring Vaca!

Andrew and I experienced something this year that we haven't for a long time: SPRING BREAK! Wow, it is such a great thing! BYU should really think about having one. Andrew missed a little bit of school on during my school's spring break. We had so much fun! It was much needed. We decided, with the help of a friend, to go to Monterey, California. It was perfect, relaxing, and really helped us put things back into perspective.

Here's a picture of us walking around in Carmel. This was a super ritzy place full of cute little shops.

Awesome jelly fish!! The Monterey Aquarium was amazing. Who knew there are so many jellyfish! These reminded me of Finding Nemo.A sunset at a beach in Pacific Grove. It was beautiful and freezing cold.
Here we are riding a surrey on a bike path along the coast. It was so fun to just relax with Andrew and site see.
Such a pretty place! This was at Lover's Point. Oh yeah.
Us at Lover's Point.
We are so lucky to be able to go to California and have quality time together!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Waiting...

We're calling this stage in our lives "waiting." Way too much waiting. We're waiting to here from medical schools for next year--we're on the waiting list for University of Maryland, St. Louis University, and Iowa--Carver. WE'RE DYING. Whenever I think about next year, there are so many different things that we could be doing. It's an exciting time, so we're trying to love right now. It gets hard sometimes though. We're just grateful to be in a good place right now. Come what may!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Maryland Christmas!

The Boys. From the left, it's Andrew's brother Matt, Andrew's Dad, John, brother Jacob, Papa Lowe, and then the lovely Andrew.


One the bottom is Andrew's sister Lydia, Andrew's Mom, Debbie, and then me!

We had a lot of fun. We spent some time downtown D.C.--even ice skating outside downtown! What a cool city. We also went to a really fun wedding reception, and fun just hanging around. Thanks Lowe's!!

One Year of Success!

We've been married a WHOLE YEAR!! Woohoo! It seems like we've been married longer that that, but at the same time, the time has flown by. Marriage is such a wonderful thing. I'm so grateful to be married to a wonderful man. :) Some exciting things that have happened this year are...

  • We got married! December 27, 2008 in St. Paul, MN. I know...we're crazy.
  • I finished school and conquered the Teacher Work Sample. That was probably one of my greatest moments of weakness--I'm a sane person now that it's done.
  • Andrew took the MCAT...twice! And he's applied to medical schools and had a few interviews. Now word yet on where! We're just waiting.
  • We went to California--Sacramento and San Francisco. We had a blast and even got to see Wicked there. We visited with Andrew's Aunt Kristina and Uncle Josh, and we also got to hang out with my Aunt Becky and Uncle Wade. My family was able to come out too! Very fun.
  • I got a job teaching!! WOOHOO!! Teaching is much more enjoyable now than it was at the beginning of the year. They kids say funny things. One kid in my class said that he and his parents were going to watch Harry Potter for his parent's wedding anniversary. He then explained that Harry Potter #1 "came out when my parents were about teenagers, so it means a lot to them." I wonder if he had some say in what movie they watched... And I wonder how old he thinks I am, because I'm pretty sure that movie came out when I was a teenager, and I'm definitely not old enough to be his mom.
  • We went to Maryland...twice! Once for fall break and then for Christmas break! It's so fun out there. Andrew's family is there, and we've had fun spending time with them.
  • We've read the whole Percy Jackson series. If you haven't read it, YOU MUST! They are great.
  • My sister Natalie got married to Alex Madsen over Thanksgiving break! They are a great couple, and we couldn't be happier for them. :)
  • Andrew's brother Matt got home from his mission in Italy. I met him for the first time in the airport! Both of Andrew's brothers are here at BYU and I have 2 siblings out here too! It's been fun having so many siblings here.
  • We conquered the swine flu!
We love each other even more! It's been a great year! We're grateful for all of the experiences we've had, and all of the adventures we have yet to come.