Sunday, March 30, 2008

Another Thesis Update

Not as exciting as a new addition to the family, but I just handed in my second thesis draft to my thesis Chairman- Dr. Robert Arundale. Bob is a gem and has been very, very patient with me and my 130 page (far-cry-from-a) masterpiece. I have found the topic (Significant Weight Loss in Women) to be very interesting, though the stress and time spent sitting at a computer working on this project has helped me to put on about 15 pounds. At least I'll get a Masters out of it.

I should get the draft back tomorrow morning and will make final revisions before it goes to committee tomorrow afternoon. I'm suppose to defend this Thursday, so time is short!

I'm feeling like a student!

Welcome Ada!

Brian and I have another new neice. Meet Ada Catherine Bickmeier who was born March 26 (her exact due-date). She is 6 lbs. 11 oz and 21 1/2 inches long. Congrats to Laura and Jeff!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Thesis Update...

My thesis is coming along. I'm at 98 pages, with several sections still to write. I'm hoping to have a complete draft done by the end of the week. I'll make my defense next Thursday, April 3 at 3:30pm. A final, defended copy is due on Monday, April 7th.

The next few weeks are going to be busy...but we're making progress.

We're Moving!

Brian has accepted a position with Koch Nitrogen in Fort Dodge, Iowa! We'll be making the move in June. Brian's start date is June 23. We're very excited! Here's a link to the town website

More information and photos to follow.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Dawson Update

Well, out pup is back from the vet. He had a complete examination of this knees and hips, which included a series of x-rays. We're being referred to an orthopedic puppy surgeon in Anchorage, but it appears as though Dawson has Cruciate Ligament Damage (CLD). He indeed destroyed one of the ligaments that holds his Femur and Tibia together. Thankfully after the initial injury there isn't much pain. It will, however, require surgery in the coming weeks, but we don't know quite when yet. Our vet said that Dawson may be prone to such an injury because of his genetics, but what I found online disputes this claim, saying that such an injury just happens in labs because they're so high energy. The vet said that we should have both knees worked on, but I'm not sure I agree, at least from what I've read online. Sometimes dogs just blow out their knees. If you're interested in additional information here are a few good links: and

I'm thankful that Brian and I will be able to financially deal with this injury. (I suspect that some of you are thinking that he's just a dog, but he's our dog to take care of, so we're going least as much as we can.) Dawson is only 11 months old and has such wonderful, kind personality. It would be very sad if he wasn't able to have many, many adventures with us. He's also Mattie's best friend. We're going to get him fixed up. Looks like this is going to require a trip to Anchorage in the coming weeks.

Wish us luck!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Our sad chocolate pup

This weekend Dawson hurt one of his back legs and can't use it at all. We called the vet and she thinks he may have damaged the ligament in the knee. Looks like he'll most likely need surgery. Poor pup. With record temperatures outside he and Mattie want to be running around like crazy dogs (which is how he actually hurt himself in the first place). Estimated recovery time...6 to 14 weeks. He's spending a lot of time looking sad on the floor. We're hoping that he'll make a full recovery. He goes in tomorrow for x-rays and a full examination of the damage.

Colorado 2008!

Brian and I just returned from our annual (and most excellent) trip to visit our best friends Ryan and Louise in Denver, Colorado. The highlight this year was seeing Billy Joel at the Pepsi Center. It was an amazing concert and we had excellent, excellent seats (thanks to Louise)!

The Piano Man himself!

This is the second year that we spent a day skiing at Loveland. At almost 70 degrees outside, you'll hear no complaints from us!

We also were able to take a tour of the Celestial Seasoning's Tea Factory in Bolder. It was great fun! Such a good looking group...even in hairnets.

See you again next year!

Hope's 28th Birthday Party

My folks were in town for my birthday weekend, so we had a little gathering at our house. Brian was out of town (on the Tok to Dawson snowmachine run), so it was nice to have some company. Too bad that Seth (my twin brother) and his family couldn't come. Maybe we'll be together next year.

Tammy and Beth made yummy, fun cupcakes.

Beth (my niece) helped me blow out my candles. Make a wish!

I got another book on how to raise chickens! (which I'm planning on doing once we move to the Lower 48).

Here's William (my nephew) and Mom hanging out eating watermelon.

Tammy and Beth.

Jen, Nate and Dave (not shown) had fun with Brian's Nintendo Wii.

It was a fun day!