May was a whirlwind! It started with an Ordination exam, the end of my internship and finals week. I finished my second year of Seminary, loaded up my car, and headed on a road trip North with my friend Alexandra. We went through 9 states in 5 days, taking our time and enjoying the journey. I am so lucky to have such a great friend and travel partner! We had an amazing trip, which you can read more about here. I had a few days to get settled in Burlington and then started my Chaplaincy program, known as CPE (Clinical Pastoral Education). I'm the youngest in my group by a generation, which I was very surprised by. There's only 5 of us (2 Buddhists, 1 Anglican from Quebec, and 1 Methodist), which has already made for an interesting experience. I'm assigned to the telemetry floor (hearts) and I've begun seeing patients.
Where I'm Working
I'm working at University of Vermont Medical Center as a chaplain intern. CPE is a challenging program and I've already begun to learn about what it means to provide spiritual care in times of crisis. My program is 11 weeks with 400 clinical hours. I work M-Th 8:30am-4pm, with 2 overnight shifts and 1 24hr weekend shift a month. The hours are pretty reasonable (I say before my first on-call shift!) and I'm finding a good rhythm of work and rest. It's actually faster to bike than drive to work, which means I've been able to combine exercise and commuting. I'm sure I'll have more to say as the summer goes on but so far I'm glad to be in the program.
What I'm Reading
After a long year of difficult readings for school, I was more than ready to dive into a cupcake novel for some light vacation reading. I have love many of Jojo Moyes books and The Last Letter From Your Lover was no exception. It's got a few good twists and plays with time, which I enjoy. I think I read the whole book in two days and thoroughly enjoyed it.
What I'm Eating
This month I had perhaps one of my last cooking photoshoots with Leslie, who graduated this month. We have had so much fun working on the food blog together and I hope we'll find a way to do more collaborations in the future! We made my favorite dessert, tiramisu, and it was a hit. It's not as hard to make as you might think and it's SO satisfying and impressive! If you've never made (or had) tiramisu, this recipe is pretty easy to follow. I hope you make it and love it as much as I do!
What I'm Celebrating
I passed my last ordination exam! I failed the Exegesis ordination exam in January and then spent all semester re-honing my exegetical skills, albeit in my Hebrew class. I took it again this month, and although it was in Greek again, I felt so much better about it. I knew what I was doing and I was ready to do the work. I've always been an "all or nothing" kind of person, and these exams were no exception. I passed by both of the graders and am finally all done with my ords! I'm a bit ahead of schedule, but it's because I need to have all my ordination work done before I study abroad next fall.
What I'm Listening To
Jake Tapper is my favorite news anchor (ok ok, I'm a Millenial so I only follow him on twitter, but still) and when I saw he wrote a fiction book, I knew I wanted to read it. The wait list at the library for the ebook of The Hellfire Club was very long, so I got the audiobook. Jake reads it and although I'm only a few chapters in, I'm really enjoying it. There's a reason it was on the NYT Bestseller list for 3 weeks.
What I'm Enjoying
I'm staying at a camp and conference center on Lake Champlain, which is absolutely stunning. After 2 years of living in a place without mountains or water, I can feel my soul replenished again in their presence. The camp has kayaks and I've been taking one out as many afternoons as possible. It's such a peaceful place for me and I am so grateful. The environment I live in has a huge impact on me and I am overwhelmed with gratitude for how much I love it here.
Where I've Been
We had an extra long Memorial Day weekend at work, so I figured it would be a good opportunity to head up to Montréal since it's only 2 hours away from Burlington. I drove up Friday afternoon and spent the weekend walking and eating my way through Montreal. It was a great weekend trip and it felt good to be in a real city again after a few weeks of teeny-tiny Vermont. The highlight of the trip was a morning at a spa on a converted ferry boat, Bota Bota. I would truly go back to Montreal just to go back! It was the most relaxing morning of my life and I was pretty much in Heaven. As much as I enjoyed my trip to Montreal, I wished I had been there with a friend. I've done a lot of solo traveling, but I'm so excited to be traveling with Keith in the fall. Turns out there is a limit to my independence!