It has been a big week for our family. Our only daughter, Meghan, finished a 14-month accelerated nursing program at The University of Oklahoma and is now a nurse.

Steve and ann teget

Meghan earned her bachelor’s degree in Foreign Language and Literature – Spanish at the University of Nebraska-Omaha. Typically, a bachelor of science in nursing degree is a four year course of study for those without a bachelor’s degree and 24 months for those with one. This curriculum squeezes everything (including clinicals, a capstone project, and a preceptorship) into 14 months. Straight through – no real breaks, no social life, no sleep. In other words, it’s grueling. But she did it!

OU BSN class

Meghan completed her program a few days ago with a capstone research project presentation and then a pinning ceremony in Tulsa.

meghan's capstone project

Our parents and Meghan’s friends Amanda and Josiah were able to join us to celebrate this week. We are all so proud of Meghan for making it through.

meghan and friends at pinning

Next, Meghan will study to take the nursing boards (NCLEX) and good news — she already has job! She’ll be working as an RN in at St. Francis Heart Hospital in Tulsa and we couldn’t be more excited for this next step in her journey.

St. Francis Hospital

We had a chance to visit the hospital this week and Meghan gave us and Steve’s mom and dad a tour.

hospital tour

We all got to see the floor where she’ll be working and meet one of her nurse (and life) mentors, Patti. Gayle was also a nurse, so she especially enjoyed seeing St. Francis and where her granddaughter will practice nursing.

All along, we’d planned and budgeted to take Meghan on a trip of some sort to celebrate her graduation and give her a well-deserved break before heading into her full-time nursing career. Unfortunately, we didn’t know until just a few weeks ago what her schedule would be, so we had to make travel arrangements very quickly.

Flights to either coast were quite expensive with the short booking time and hotels in major cities also seemed quite pricey the last week in July. Steve started searching online for the best bang for our buck and found a somewhat last minute cruise deal out of Galveston that fit our timeline and budget.

liberty of the seas cabin

So, we’re off on a 7-night cruise on Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas. We leave from Galveston (which was a day’s drive for us from Oklahoma) and have stops in Cozumel, Grand Cayman, and Jamaica.

Meghan is looking forward to finally relaxing and we’re looking forward to spending time with our daughter — the nurse.

  • This is our Airbnb, Postcard Place. It's located right in Pawhuska, just a two and a half minute drive from the Pioneer Woman's Mercantile. It even has its own Instagram account, @postcardplce. ⁣
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Postcard Place can accommodate up to six people. With comfy bedding (including clean duvets for each new guest), USB ports by every bed, make-up remover wipes, comfy blankets for tv viewing, complimentary coffee/tea, creamer, full kitchen, soap, shampoo, hand lotion, and even a luggage scale, we've tried to think of everything you might want when spending a night away from home. Of course, we also provide stamped Pawhuska postcards so you can send greetings to those who couldn't come along on the trip.⁣
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Find Postcard Place on Airbnb and book it for your next trip to Pawhuska and come @visittheosage.
  • Perched high on a hill in Tuscany is the medieval village of Montepulciano. In the center of town is the piazza grande paved with bricks laid in a herringbone pattern in the 14th century. ⁣
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Standing in the piazza, looking at the bricks, we were filled with a sense of awe at the history these bricks have seen. They've been there for 700 years so have seen times of war and peace, celebration and sorrow. Generation after generation of townsfolk were born, lived and died, and all have walked on these bricks. ⁣
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This is one of the things we love most about traveling. It gives us an authentic feel for history, one we wouldn't have if we just stayed at home.
  • We were so tickled when @thechefandthedish reached out and asked us if we'd like to take a complimentary cooking class with them. They offer private cooking classes with chefs from all over the world that you can take right in your own kitchen. ⁣
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For this class, we Skyped with chef Paola who taught us to make strawberry risotto, traditional bruschetta, and a delicious poached pear dessert that blew our minds. ⁣
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Risotto always seemed like a difficult dish to make, but Chef Paola explained it so well that it wound up being pretty easy. We spent a great afternoon with friends, learned something new, and enjoyed a great meal after. A class with The Chef & The Dish is a great gift idea, as well. Follow the link in our bio, and you can read more about our class on our blog.
  • The world is a big place, and there's so much to discover. Go places, and see things. It doesn't matter if you don't have a detailed itinerary, either. Sometimes, it's more about the journey and what you see and experience along the way, than it is about the destination.
  • During our trip in Tuscany with @italyunfiltered, we stopped at a small family winery. After learning about the organic methods they use to produce high quality Chianti Clasico wines, we had a tasting. ⁣
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Wine tastings in Italy are nothing like those in the US. They are glorious affairs complete with delicious foods paired with the incredible wines. This particular winery brought us samples of homemade, organic jams made from fruits grown in the family's garden. We dabbed these on locally produced pecorino cheese. Yum!⁣
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We're so glad that we had a local driver and guide. Stopping here was a highlight of our Italian adventure, and we never would have found it on our own.
  • The village of Marsaxlokk, Malta, is famous for these brightly painted fishing boats. The design is rather ancient, possibly dating back to Phoenician times, though it's still used today because it is very strong and holds up well in rough weather. One feature of each boat's decorations, are eyes painted on the bow of the boat. These eyes are said to protect the people fishing while they are at sea.
  • The blue cobblestones of Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, are actually part of a recycling project which started 500 years ago. Iron foundries in Spain produced huge piles of waste, called slag. Rather than throw these piles away, the slag was made into blocks which was placed into ships as ballast. The ballast was offloaded in Puerto Rico when they loaded products bound for Spain. The blocks were then used to pave the streets. ⁣
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Pretty good idea, and 500 years later, they are holding up well!
  • The Overseas Highway connects Key West and the Florida Keys to the mainland U.S. While the entire road is a marvel of engineering, the centerpiece is the Seven Mile Bridge, which runs over water for, well, seven miles.⁣
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The next time you're driving, reset your trip odometer and wait until it gets to seven miles. You'll see that's a pretty long distance. And then think about the fact that people built a bridge over water with no land to support them for that distance. Pretty incredible-especially since the first one was built in 1912.

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