March Rewind

I know that it’s already mid-April and spring is in full swing, but there’s no time like the present to do my March rewind, right? March was unexpectedly rough and this Lent ended up being a little extra penitential. But we made it through and Easter was all the sweeter for it. And now that life has become re-equilibrated, I have time to type out a few words about what we did last month. So let’s back the truck up. Continue reading


2014 with the Mikes

This year has been quite the whopper and I had hoped to do a fun post with pictures from each month. But alas, I was not that good at documenting the first part of the year, so we’ll make do with … Continue reading

A Frightened Sister, a Singing Priest, and a Rorschach Bruise Test

Here’s the low down on what’s swirling around in my head and life now. Last week I realized that the application deadline for my first funding opportunity is due August 8th. When I learned that, I was like okay, that’s fine I’ll buckle down and get it done. Then I learned it’s due to the University of Michigan July 28th and before it goes to the university, I need to turn it in to our departmental grant officer on July 21st. Whew. O-K. I REALLY have to buckle down. It’s rather unfortunate timing too what with me being out of town this weekend and next and us closing on our house on the 21st and moving later that week. I think the end of July is going to come fast!

I’m still a little more in the ‘freaked out’ stage rather than the ‘intense focus’ stage because I’m still trying to figure out what the content should be and I am getting different recommendations from my two bosses. One is suggesting content that is more like what I was originally thinking, which makes it easier, but the other is suggesting something more cutting edge and outside my comfort zone and it’s probably more likely to get funded. So that’s where I’m at. Nonetheless, I still need to find time to relax so I’m going to try to write at least one post a week to keep in touch, but if I drop off, you know why. I’m going to roll the couple posts I was going to do this week into one and link up with Simcha’s Summer Drawing Club Part I today and Jen’s 7 Quick Takes Friday. Work with me, okay?

1 – I was really intrigued by Simcha’s Summer Drawing Club and immediately got the book from the library. Really? A book that can teach anyone to draw – even me? We’ll see. Here’s my ‘before’ drawings.


My hand

Is my hand that bad looking or am I that bad of an artist? I think this is one of the times when the answer is “both.” I actually did a decent job representing how crooked my fingers really are. See? I think the crookedness is from years of clarinet playing.



Self-portrait. I think that problem is that my hair needs to be frizzier. It is never this tame.


My sister Kelly, drawn from memory. She just looks so scared.

Chris instantly recognized Kelly and thought my self-portrait did not look like me at all. What do you think?


Jim, Kelly, Chris and I – showing off the quarts of Yuengling Chris and I found on our honeymoon. Yes, we went to the Yuengling brewery on our honeymoon.

Ok that’s a long first quick take. I’ll make up for it with the rest.

2 – What do you see in my bruise? I think I see a Michigan mitten.


3 – Chris bought me a LARGE bike pack for my road bike because we got in a disagreement because he didn’t want me to put my keys in his pouch because mine was full with my granola bar and cell phone. I said that’s dumb to buy another bike pouch to prevent us from arguing. He says it’s worth marital peace… The pack is still on my bike.

4 – Here’s a teaser of the last two parts of the blanket. This is actually an old picture and I’m now done with the 5th (LOVE that pattern). Now I’m going to take it home to momma bear and have her show me how to put it together over the holiday weekend. Time to (re)learn a little crochet. Woo hoo!


5 – One of our dear Nashville friends, Emily, just joined FOCUS, which is an organization that supports Catholic missionaries on college campuses. It’s a great organization and Emily is an amazing witness to the faith. If you’re looking for a good place to donate, I give my endorsement to Emily and FOCUS.

6 – Since I’m on the topic of Nashville friends and charitable giving… Fr. Kevin McGoldrick, who is the Campus Chaplain at Aquinas College in Nashville is also a singer songwriter (yeah, even Emily is a singer songwriter). He’s running an IndieGoGo campaign to help fund his first album. You can learn more here. This is so Nashville and I love it and miss it!

7 – Somewhere on the interwebs (I can’t find where) Jenna posted this link to the easiest up-do ever. It really is the easiest and has been awesome for getting my hair up in the summer heat and humidity. All you need is a hair tie and ~30 seconds. Seriously, try it!

Theme Thursday: Sports and Bruise Science

I am so uncoordinated that I am even able to injure myself in individual sports. Here’s the damage from falling off my bike while traveling at 0 MPH. #fail

biking fail

As a heme biologist, I would also be remiss not to point out what bruises actually are. When blood vessels break under the skin your red blood cells are released and break open, releasing hemoglobin. This makes a dark purple color. The heme molecule bound to hemoglobin is degraded by an enzyme to make biliverdin, which is green. Biliverdin is broken down in a second reaction to make bilirubin, which is yellow. I think I got a little bit of all of the above.  Here’s to the first bit o’ science on the blog!

Linking up with Cari for Theme Thursday: Sports.