Saturday, June 11, 2011

Is this thing on?

I'm pretty sure Christmas cards get more frequent updates than this blog. Not sure really where to start...

Looks like the blog ended with our graduations about a year ago. I'll give the reader's digest version (at what point will that reference be too old?).

Renee has been doing incredibly well as a nurse. She started on the night shift working 7pm-7am and recently moved to days. No longer do I have to leave for work in the morning and say, "See you tomorrow morning for 15 minutes before I leave for work again." She was also recognized by the March of Dimes as a finalist for Nurse of the Year in the Rising Star category. She was asked to be part of leadership committees and Magnet champion committees. She even put together an awesome nomination for her mentor and her mentor won a Mentor of the year type award. I can give you dozens of examples of how she has gone the extra mile for her patients and just as important, for their families. She is always loving the action of the ICU and also has fun stories that she likes to tell. Patient care is really the reason why she loves being a nurse and all the other awards and committees don't really matter to her, but it's always nice to be recognized.

I continue to work at Vanguard in a Team Leader position. We are now the largest mutual fund company with well over $1 trillion dollars in assets. Our department of about 50 people manage about $35 billion dollars. It's a little crazy when I think of it that way. It's been rewarding seeing some of my direct reports get promotions because I spend so much time with them and it's cool to see their hard work pay off. I've been in charge of a lot more initiatives in the past year on top of developing my team and I've started seeing a lot of success recently. I feel that I'm ready for the next level where I would be leading leaders but it's going to take another two years which is a little frustrating. At the end of the day, knowing I have a promising secure future in this economy is pretty good so I shouldn't be complaining.

At home we have been busy. We installed new floors, maintained the cars, learned some new cooking recipes, and really enjoyed our time together. Some close friends of ours recently got engaged and seeing how excited they are really reminded us of how awesome it is to be married. We've grown a lot from the one bedroom apartment in a shady part of Phoenix when we first moved here. We now have careers, pets, friends, favorite local restaurants, furniture, a guest room, and a knowledge of wine that is a little more than red or white. Not much, but enough to not feel like total buffoons.

We've also been fortunate to have traveled to some incredible places. We went to Europe last year and saw a little part of Spain, Renee's roots. Seeing her face light up at something as little as the white birds, because it reminded her of her Yayo, was such a special experience that it's hard to describe. Taking a train eating bread, cheese, drinking an authentic bottle of Italian wine, and playing continental was one the most memorable parts of the trip. We were also able to see the Vatican in Rome and give her a Yaya a rosary that she kept until the very end. It was a sad time for us when she passed away, but it went as well as those things possibly can. At the funeral, the priest said some really nice things because he knew both of them (but he was in some weird hurry and cut Renee off when she wanted to say some words, we're still a little bitter).

More recently, Renee and I spent a weekend in a quaint cabin in Sedona. It was fun to take the dogs on the trails and spend a couple nights with just our little family. The views were great, we did our fair share of getting lost in the mountains, and even did some grilling.

I left out a ton of other things we have done this past year. We're looking forward to spending more time with family this year and can't wait for Renee's parents to move to Phoenix. Cheers!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


So it's almost humorous how long it's been since we've posted on this blog. Since the last post, SO MUCH has happened!

1. Renee graduates from nursing school and lands her dream job at Banner Good Samaritan in the cardiovascular intensive care unit.

I am now officially Renee Chavez, RN, BSN. Since then, I have completed my orientation and am now completely on my own. It's SCARY but I absolutely love it! I am currently working night shift, which pretty much stinks with sleeping. Miguel and I don't get to see each other as much, but we absolutely appreciate every second we get to spend together now. I slowly learning to trust myself, even in scary code situations. I had my first patient code. It was TERRIFYING! But I'm glad I went straight into the ICU. I like the challenge, and I enjoy learning so much every day! I have an awesome mentor who is there for me every step of the way, as well as a group of fellow new grads who work on the same unit with me. We have lunch every once in a while to exchange stories and support! Life as a nurse is, well, interesting and eventful, but most important, extremely rewarding! More to come!

2. Miguel graduates from ASU with his Masters in Business! He is now officially Master Miguel!

After graduation, Miguel continues to work at Vanguard. He likes his job, but was getting inpatient with the lack positions available that would allow him to move up in the company. Well, his hard work and patience have officially paid off and he got a promotion! He's officially a Team Leader!!!! He supervises about 10 people. He is SO PATIENT and SO INTELLIGENT. I KNOW he is an amazing supervisor! I can't wait to see him grow in his career in the coming years! Hopefully I can get him to post on this blog as well so you can learn more from his perspective during his first year as a supervisor!

3. Pablo graduated from the University of North Texas!

We are sooooo proud of my little brother! He is currently teaching music at a local studio and playing in 2 bands. One of them is on itunes and getting ready to play in a major music festival with the Flaming Lips called NX35. You should seriously check them out! More to come on his band.

4. Renee and Miguel take over Europe! Miguel and I were lucky enough to get to visit: Paris, Rome, Venice, Greece, Croatia and Turkey! It was AMAZING! We had a blast getting to spend so much time together! More pictures to come!

Hopefully I'll be able to keep up with this blog now that school is over for both of us!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Almost time to start school!!!

So we're gearing up to get back in the swing of things with school! Well, Miguel has been working all break, but I have been doing absolutely nothing but sleeping and eating. Man, it's been great =) I know this semester is going to be tough, so I've been taking in all the sleep I can get.

Miguel's still rocking the house at work and of course at school. Neither of us have any idea what to expect from the next couple of months. Miguel will be nearing the end of school (he graduates in August, but is walking with the ASU in May....i know, his program is strange) and I graduate in May! Right after we graduate we're going to head to Europe for "Renee and Miguel take over some of the coolest places in the world!" We're both so excited to go to Europe together. Right when we get back I will be taking the Kaplan review for the nursing boards and then hopefully taking the boards soon after that. Then it's time for the wedding! Lauren asked me to be one of her bridesmaids, so I'm super thrilled! A great friend of mine, Caitlyn, is also getting married this summer. She also asked me to be a bridesmaid, so it's going to be a great summer! I'm hoping to start working soon after my boards in the Banner hospital system.

I guess that's all for now. Let the fun begin.....

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Some pictures from Miguel's Mom's 50th celebration!

Christmas and Family Fun!

Miguel and I just got back from California for a fun-filled Christmas vacation!

The week started out with my parents driving here to Phoenix, surprising me by bringing my little brother Pablo and his puppy Mitch. I can't even say how excited we were to see him. The dogs got along really well, although there were some problems with Ava getting jealous of Mitch and Austin playing so much. The cats pretty much stayed in our room the entire time to stay out of Mitch's way. Basically, we ate, drank, and played hours and hours of rockband. It was SO MUCH FUN!!

On Christmas Eve, Miguel and I left for the bay area around 6pm and got to California at 7. We went straight to my brother-in-law Fernando's house to spend time with Miguel's parents, Fernando, and his fiance Lauren. We had some FANTASTIC salsa and just spent some good time talking and drinking some beer and wine. After that we left to our cousin Perla's house to say hi to Tia Chuy and Crystal before they left for their Christmas in Paris!! When we got there they were watching the Twilight movie. Seeing as watching this movie will be a huge event for me (after reading all 4 books in only 4 days and becoming completely obsessed in the process) I refused to watch the movie until I was here at home with Amanda. We went back to Miguel's parents house and completely crashed until 11 the next day. We spent the next couple of days celebrating the holidays Chavez style with the cousins and the rest of the family. We had a fantastic trip! For Christmas, Miguel's parents are going to give us our plane ticket to Europe for our graduation trip!!!! When we opened the envelope with the voucher we pretty much tackled Miguel's mom! We are so grateful for this help and are so excited for our trip to Europe! We plan on leaving May 18 and flying into Paris. After that, we will fly into Rome for a couple of days and then head up to Venice to board our cruise ship. On the cruise, we will visit Turkey, Croatia and Greece! We're hoping to fly out of Venice to return home May 31st. We couldn't be more excited for this trip!!! Lauren also gave me a nursing student's survival pack as my Christmas present. The pack contained chapstick (OF COURSE!) and a cute kitty cosmetic bag with a mirror. She also gave me the nurse's pro pack, an organizer that carries all of our various scissors, tape, alcohol wipes, safety pins, and my pin light. I couldn't be more excited to show off my gift at clinicals this semester!! Thanks Lauren!!

So now we're back in Scottsdale and Miguel is getting ready for work tomorrow. My in-laws and Tia Sandi and cousins are going to be coming here to Phoenix for the next week, so it will be another fun week of family time. Hopefully we can go see the zoo lights and other fun stuff around the area. We plan on spending New Year's with one of my best friends Debora and friends. I don't feel that well, so I will also be trying to rest as much as I can and then finally get back into my Bikram yoga routine.

Miguel and I are also getting really excited about the fact that we're coming up on our 2 year wedding anniversary on February 10. We will have been together for 4 years. Time flies when you're having so much fun being married and in love!

More posts to come now that I have time off from school!

Sunday, November 2, 2008