November 17, 2013

Hustlin' and Bustlin'

In the past two months a lot has changed for us Randalls. First of all, I got a new(used) car! She's a beaut. 

My lovely 2011 Honda Accord ladies and gents! 

In other news, we are settling down in South Florida. We have found a great church here, and have finally made a few friends at church and at Joseph's school. As for my current travel nursing job, I will be ending my contract at the end of November right before I leave for a medical mission trip to Bulgaria (!!!) and I have two interviews for permanent jobs closer to where we live. One is tomorrow and the other is next Monday. 

There is a lot going on, to say the least. I am so excited for the possibility of changing jobs, and finding a new way to fulfill my calling as a nurse. I have always loved the Operating Room, but I am open to new possibilities as an ICU nurse or really anything! 

Here is a snippet of what's been going on with us lately, and I hope to return to the blogosphere more frequently now! 

 This is not an accurate picture of what our living area looks like right now, but it lasted for at least 24 hours. I'm proud!

 Moscow mule: ginger beer, vodka, lime juice, sprig of mint (optional)

 Outing to deerfield beach 

 The great ending to an awesome series by Veronica Roth, an RUF alum! 

 Bama hat for work from my dear friend Kara

 Majestic Dexter

 Our first time trying REAL crab claws. So. Good. 

Date night out on Las Olas blvd. 

So much going on, so little time. I'm glad to have a place where I can share these little snippets of our life and hopefully look back at them for years to come!

Happy Sunday!

- A

September 11, 2013

I am a wanderer.

I know I won't be the first to say this, but life is hard. As I type this post, I am sitting in my WONDERFUL family friends' kitchen where I am staying the nights I am on call. Shout out to them, by the way. Without having a place to stay, I would be at the Holiday Inn (or probably somewhere much more disgusting). I am enjoying my time with them (even though right now they are in Europe!), but there's nothing quite like sleeping in your own bed, showering in your own shower, and waking up the next morning not forgetting your work shoes! -- yes, that did happen one day!

I have learned some good things in the past few weeks. I miss my husband regularly, so it makes me want to take advantage of the time I have with him at home (less passive TV watching, and more spending actual time together). I have eaten out ALL BY was probably the most awkward thing I have EVER done (soon I will think of something more awkward I'm sure). I didn't die, though. Yea it was awkward, but I did it (those of you who know me know that this was a big deal). I got a flat tire one morning on the way to work and didn't change it by myself (I didn't have all the stuff in my car), but I got help at 5:30 in the morning and made it to work (late!), and today I took my car to a random car place to get it checked when something wasn't working right. 

Though random and seemingly unimportant, all of these things are things that I NEVER would have done if we hadn't moved here. We're not necessarily doing a bunch of fun stuff or going on a bunch of adventures because of school and work, but we are learning a lot of things by ourselves for the first time. I will tell you though, being an adult SUCKS! Seriously. I want to be a kid again. All of this talk about IRAs, buying a car, and crazy random documents that I am supposedly supposed to know the names of is exhausting! We're making it though. 

Thinking about this day in 2011, I was in 7th grade in band class and my teacher got called out of the classroom, came back crying, and told us what had happened. At that point the second plane had just hit, and we turned the TV on and watched a replay of it. I can't believe it was 12 years ago today. In light of that, all the little problems in my life currently seem microscopic. Every day I need to be thankful for my circumstances, and not ever wish time to go faster. 

- A

August 29, 2013

Back and in full swing on Etsy!

For the second year, I will be opening my Etsy store for fall and winter. I sell knitted scarves, headbands, and occasionally blankets. Please check out my store to see the goods! 

I hope all of you have and great holiday weekend, and ROLL TIDE!!

- A

August 25, 2013

Keeping it All in Perspective

A few circumstances lately have gotten me down. Stupid stuff at work, frustrations with not being able to be at home with Joseph when I'm on call, not having good friends here yet that I can talk to...etc. One of these things by itself may not cause a mini meltdown, but put them together, and you have me once a week. When I really let myself dwell on our situation, it makes me long to go back home to Alabama. It would be so much easier if we could stay in Birmingham for dental school, wouldn't it? We wouldn't really be missing out on anything if we hadn't moved. At least that's what I'm saying to myself. 

So why? Why is God putting us through this challenge of moving away, seemingly alone? The truth is that we're not alone. If only we would stop for a minute to realize that he has us and he's NOT letting go for a second, no matter how much I want to control this situation. We are here for a reason, and I've had a few glimpses of it already. 

Getting used to a new environment, new job, new school, and all new people at the same time is tough. Paired with the fact that neither of us has EVER had to do this makes it even harder and more foreign. When I was growing up, I longed to be the "new kid", to be able to start over and have no one really know me and be whoever I wanted to be. Now I want to go back to the people who know me the best. I don't want to make the effort to meet new people and share my life with them. Why? Because it's hard. But you know what? Maybe it's the hardest times that bring us closer together and closer to God. It's not easy, and it's not supposed to be. Getting to know your husband better can sometimes equal getting to know your own sin better, which is rough. Meeting new people and making friends means sharing your life with them, which can be fun and scary all at the same time. 

Do we really want to stay in that safe bubble where everyone already knows us? YES. We do. That is our human nature. The less effort required, the better. When you are forced to make that effort, it all becomes a little more clear. We were meant for this. We were meant to connect with others, people who are the same and people who are totally different from us. Why? Because we were created for relationship. God, in his infinite wisdom, created us in his image to be in communion with Him and each other. The further we go away from relationship, the further we go away from God. 

I am not saying that I have figured it all out, but I do know this. Once you make that effort, it is REFRESHING! Coming from a totally insecure introvert, I know how hard it is to put yourself out there. The inner dialogue that goes on in my head when I prepare to meet someone is crazy and mostly illogical. Anyway, as I attempt to wrap up my weird tangent, I want to remind myself of who I really am. I am a sinner, and I am reminded more of it every day. But, I am saved and forgiven by a God who sacrificed himself for ME! When I think of what He did, all that I'm going through seems so much less important. 

Now that's perspective!

- A 

August 17, 2013

Our future area rug (and other rugs we liked)

Ever since we moved, we have been looking for a good, neutral area rug for the living room. We didn't want anything too crazy because our curtains are very colorful, as well as our burnt orange sofas. Enter A website that I had previously thought overrated has now become my best friend. If you look around long enough, you will find a great deal on that website like I did. 

Here are a few of the rugs we liked:

too modern for Joseph (Spirals Orange Rug)

And...drumroll please....

I originally found this rug at for $549.00 (way too high). When I looked for it elsewhere, I saw it on for $399.00 last weekend and almost bought it, but I'm so glad I didn't. Today when I clicked on the link I had made to look at it again, I saw that it went down to $326.24!! If that wasn't awesome enough, I had ordered some Le Parfait canisters from the same website to put coffee in, and overstock sent me a 10% off coupon to my email! After applying that code, I bought this rug for $293.62. That is a whopping $255.38 off the original price (almost half off). For something that good quality, I am beyond excited about my find. 

Question of the day: 

- What is your favorite discount website/store? 

love, A

Cinnamon Vanilla Overnight Oats with Banana

Lately I have become a nut for overnight oats. I get most of my recipes from a blog called Peanut Butter Fingers, but the other day I created my own recipe! 

First, get your ingredients together: 

1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/4 cup almond milk
1 5oz container fat free vanilla yogurt 
1 teaspoon chia seeds
1 sprinkle cinnamon 

1. mix all ingredients together in small tupperware container. Refrigerate overnight. 

The next morning, stir oatmeal and add 1/2 of a cut up banana to it. Delicious!! 

Hope all of you are having a great Saturday! 

- A

August 13, 2013

White Coat Ceremony

It's only Tuesday :(. Coming off of a big weekend and the days go by slow. Probably because I'm tired. I digress... 

So this past weekend was kind of a big deal for Joseph and I. He officially started Dental School last Tuesday, and his white coat ceremony was Sunday! Joseph's parents came in town for the weekend to see us and to go to the ceremony Sunday morning. 

Friday afternoon, I picked the in-laws up from the airport while Joseph finished up classes. Once we got home, he was there to greet us. We decided to find somewhere fun to go to dinner that night in Ft. Lauderdale, and we found an awesome place that we will DEFINITELY visit again. This place is called Coconuts, and it not only has a beautiful view, but wonderful seafood and an awesome drink menu. 

To start off, we got a crab claw appetizer and a tomato salad appetizer. Both were amazing. For dinner, we all got some form of seafood, but I would definitely recommend the coconut shrimp platter and the macaroni and cheese. The jambalaya was also delicious!! I also tried the Limoncello Mojito, and I think it might be the best mojito I have ever had. 

After dinner, we walked over to the beach and took a few pictures. They aren't great quality but here they are.

I think I love living near the beach. It's not the same as the gulf coast, though, that's for sure. 

Saturday we slept in a little bit and then drove down to Miami. We drove around there for a little while before heading back to our apartment and going to Target to get a few things for the apartment. Saturday night we went out to dinner again, this time to Timpano. This was definitely a fancier place, but still such good food! It was Joseph's mom's birthday, so we had a mini celebration that night! 

Sunday morning, we got up early, picked up Joseph's parents, and headed to Nova for breakfast before the White Coat Ceremony! I have to say I enjoyed all of the professors and deans who spoke, and I am truly excited to see what the next 4 years brings us. 

all of us before the ceremony

Joseph showing us his lab station

Getting his white coat on with the other students

Good pic Joseph's dad took of us on Saturday. 

That pretty much wraps up our weekend, now off to bed for another day of work! 

- A

August 4, 2013

Birthday Wish List!

While Joseph and I were running errands today, I found myself thinking about what I wanted for my birthday this year. Every year I feel like I have gone more and more functional as far as presents, so I wanted to do a little of both this year. 

1. Ray Ban Sunglasses

these are the original Ray Ban Wayfarers in tortoise with green lenses. Pretty classic, ya think? 

2. Hobo Wallet 

this is the Rachel wallet in Jade. I am loving this green color, and I haven't bought a new wallet in about 6 years. Yep. Seriously.

3. Hard Case Luggage 

Since Joseph and I will be traveling a lot more (at least on a plane), I thought it would be great to get some sturdier luggage. And I am OBSESSED with giraffe print. 

4. New shoes for work 

Yes, giraffe again. I cannot find these things anywhere!! I am hoping that one of the clog companies either comes up with something similar or re-issues these again! If any of you know where I can find giraffe print clogs, let me know! 

Obviously, I do not expect to get all of these items, but it just gives you guys an idea, and maybe one of these will end up on your birthday list! (I can't believe I just typed "you guys", turning into a northerner). 

Question of the weekend: 

- What is/was on your birthday list this year? 


- A

August 1, 2013

Two weeks down, and feeling pretty good!

So, yes, we live in South Florida now. And yes, I started my first travel nursing assignment last Monday. For those of you who do travel nursing or change nursing jobs frequently, you know better than I do how frustrating new things can be. Let's just say last week wasn't great. 

First of all, my new co-workers are GREAT! They have all been really welcoming and nice to me, and have helped me immensely as I struggle to learn the differences between my old job and my new job. It's funny when you are hired for the exact same job in a different location/hospital, and it ends up being totally different even though the job descriptions are the same. 

I won't go into detail because people who don't know CVOR nursing will have NO IDEA what I'm talking about, but I feel like with almost two weeks under my belt that I'm starting to feel comfortable with the way this OR does things. At the beginning of this week I was counting down the days I have left, but tonight I feel like I could accept a contract renewal from them at the end of 13 weeks! What a difference a few days can make. Whenever I get overwhelmed with work I tend to make the worst of things, but in those moments when I remember why I do what I do, it all comes back to me. Sometimes only prayer works.

In other news, Joseph is going completely batty at home. He starts school in T-MINUS 5 DAYS! He is so excited/anxious/scared I can't even describe it, but for the present moment he is bored. In fact, he bought a used copy of LEGO Harry Potter (a video game) and beat the whole thing in 2 days. Productive, huh?! We're hoping to FINALLY go to the beach on Saturday, so maybe I will have some pictures of the area for y'all Monday! 

- A

July 27, 2013

{why I love} Target

Today was a lazy rainy Saturday. Joseph and I were planning to go to Ft. Lauderdale beach if the weather permitted, but thus, we awoke to a thunderstorm. Even though our plans were ruined, there's something to say about sleeping late during a rain relaxing. 

Since I have been hanging around the house all day, I ended up doing a little online shopping to update my wardrobe. I am one of those people who purges a lot ... meaning if I don't wear something often enough, I will sell it (@ or donate it. Because of that, I am always looking for new trendy items cheaply. 

Enter I love Target, but when I'm actually in the store I tend to spend WAY more money than I planned to start with. allows me to plan a little more and search for clearance items that may or may not be at my local store. Plus, spending $50 means FREE SHIPPING! Here is a little snippet of my mini shopping spree. 

This is a little more colorful than usual, but lately I noticed how black and white my wardrobe is, and I'm hoping little splashes of color here and there will help. All of these items were on clearance, btw. Awesomeness. 

Happy weekend! 

- A 

July 20, 2013


Yesterday was not a great day. Woke up late (as usual), and just felt, well...stuck. We're new to town, don't know anyone, and I'm getting stir crazy because I'm ready to start my new job (so excited about it by the way!). 

So what do I do? Create an entry way photo wall, of course! I started out with too many picture frames, so I decided to go with trial and error to figure out placement. Some blogs suggest to use poster board to map out your photo wall, which I want to try in the future, but I was too impatient. I think it turned out pretty good, though. 

I plan to trade out some of the older photos for pictures from the recent weddings once I get them. Until then, I like it. 

Also, praying that everything goes well Monday morning at my new job. It is a travel assignment (13 weeks long) at a hospital in Atlantis, FL, which is just south of West Palm Beach, baby! I have never had to commute an hour to work, so that should be interesting to say the least. 

Puppy lovin' 

Have a great weekend! 

- A

July 18, 2013

Here we are in South Florida....

It's been awhile. We've been busy. I feel bad that I didn't take too many pictures on the way down to South Florida last Monday, but we did travel all the way there in ONE DAY! It all seems a little surreal sitting in this new apartment (which is on the ground floor, by the way! - all of you apartment people will appreciate the glory of that), but it's starting to feel like home. 

Here's a little peak at what we walked into once we got our keys. Later, I will give you a glance at our progress (though limited it might be!).


 Living Room: 

Screened-in Patio: 

Living Room (looking from the patio door):

"Master Bath": 

1/2 Bath: 

Kitchen (to the left off the entry way): 



And, I almost forgot bedroom. Bad picture, but at least Dexter's feeling at home: 

I almost failed to mention the annoying thing right now: WEATHER! We keep trying to have a beach day before I start my job next week, and every morning we wake up to rain :(. It must not be meant to happen. At least We didn't have a full on hurricane! 

That's it for now, but we would love suggestions on what to do when you move to a new place! 

- A