A review on 2016 using the hashtag #smileinsixteen. The word for 2017 will be announced soon! Enjoy!

S E P T E M B E R 8 T H & 9 T H 2 0 1 6

Four months to the day that I completely lost my hearing in my right ear was the day that I was activated (turned on). I could feel the simulation at first, but as they moved from electrode to electrode my brain could slowly acknowledge that it was sound. It continues to improve each day and probably will for the next year.

#blessings #medel #cochlearimplants #smileinsixteen

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October 1, 2016 ·



September was a really rough month for me. I felt like I was really negative all month and it affected the people around me. I wasn’t grateful for what I had when I should have been.

So in October, I’ve decided that I’m going to do a photo challenge where I list one thing I am grateful for a day and each will come from a different category.

D A Y 1 : W O R D S

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So proud to represent PACS today at the St Louis Walk4Hearing kickoff luncheon! The walk is scheduled for Saturday, October 8th. Sign up today or donate to this wonderful cause!

#walk4hearing #smileinsixteen


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July 25, 2016 ·




It was a fantastic weekend visiting family, putting my toes in the ocean and cuddling with doggies. It was just what my little heart needed!

#blessings #smileinsixteen #FordFamilyReunion2016

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July 6, 2016 ·



The evolution of Phonak Hearing Aids! #smileinsixteen #hearingaids


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June 26, 2016 ·




What a great weekend road tripping up to northern Illinois to see this lovely friend. We went to the lake, laughed, ate ice cream and chocolate, experienced the drive in theatre, went garage sale shopping and had an all around good time!

On my drive back to St Louis today, I stopped off in President Lincoln’s hometown to tour the sites and pay my respects to the great leader. It was such an awesome experience and one that I think everyone should do



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June 22, 2016 ·



We play phone tag because of our busy schedules and the time change that it is nice when we actually catch each other and are able to talk! It was great catching up with sissy tonight even though we are miles apart! Love you lisie!!!! #blessings #smileinsixteen #ThankGoodnessForSnapchat

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“When life gets you down, do you wanna know what you’ve gotta do? Just keep swimming.” #FindingDory #MovieTheatureAdventures #smileinsixteen

Sunset Chasing tonight at the World Pavilion! New timelapse video coming soon! #smileinsixteen #summer2016 #stllivin

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I love to play and have fun. Climbing rocks at Elephant Rocks State Parks is no exception. And then you get to the top and look out at the greens of Missouri. The joy that fills your heart from adventuring is priceless. What is your adventure today?

#blessings #smileinsixteen #summertime #summerbucketlist #stllivin#adventuring

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I’ve done quite a few 5K, but this was my first in freezing cold weather. Great morning running the crazy out of me and celebrating finishing another semester! Time to eat chocolate, pack up and go home for a few months! #runningadventures#hotchocolaterun2016 #smileinsixteen 

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I thought I would update y’all since it’s been a while since I’ve written. I’ll be three months post activation on Thursday (switch on) and the improvement has been remarkable. I really didn’t like it at the beginning but I’ve forced myself to wear it over the past few months. Just this last week, my brain has started to figure out that it can use both ears to make meaning. Like I hear high frequencies (s, sh etc) on the implant side and low frequencies (m, o etc) on the hearing aid side. My brain can now put them together and it sounds more natural. If I take the implant off I can’t hear as well so I actually like wearing it. While speech perception on the implant side alone is still hard, I’m pleased at the amount of growth that I have seen. I’m starting two new programs next week that I hope to take home and work on over Christmas break and through my January student teaching rotation. Even though there has been a lot of challenging days, I am pleased at the progress. #blessings #smileinsixteen #thankful #cochlearimplants

December 1, 2016 ·



This is why I have chosen the career I have chosen. Moments like this when this child gets really excited about the little things and can tell me what she wants. I don’t always understand her, but her progress is remarkable. Yesterday we had a zoo adventure and she loved every minute of it. She learned a new animal and was fascinated. I can’t wait to keep watching her grow. #blessings#futuredeafeducator#cochlearimplants#deafkidsrock #babysittingadventures #smileinsixteen

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I thought I would share some scenes from Thanksgiving at the Rey’s. It was fairly quiet weekend as Lisa and I were exhausted from our studies, but we still managed to get out and have some fun. From the Christmas tree lighting, Thanksgiving dinner with friends to just laying on the couch, it was a nice way to kick off the holiday season. I took a moment on the plane flight home today to reflect on what I am thankful for and it is all of YOU: dear family and friends who care and love me for who I am. I know I don’t always show that I appreciate it, but know that I deeply do. It’s all of YOU that keep me going on those hard days and I’ve had a lot of them lately. I feel so blessed to have all of YOU in my life and to rejoice in this holiday season! Happy Holidays Friends! #thankful#happythankgiving #smileinsixteen 

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Great afternoon volunteering at the Special Olympics Healthy Hearing event. #audpeeps#deafed #smileinsixteen 

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Second year Deaf Ed at the Walk 4 Hearing event! #deafedclassof2017#raisingawareness#hearingloss#bestcolleaguesever #smileinsixteen 

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Last year (top) we were those scared first year deaf Ed students who didn’t know what we were doing! This year (bottom) we are this crazy group that can’t stop laughing at each other’s jokes. It’s crazy what can change in a year! #blessings #deafedclassof2017 #smileinsixteen 

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They have always had a really deep meaning for me. One of my favorite colors is yellow and my speech therapists growing up told me that I always drew a sun. Today, I draw flowers for all of the kiddos who ask. Sunflowers describe me and are my favorites.

I am long overdue for a life update so here we go. It’s been a summer of learning here in Missouri getting used to this humidity thing and conquering other challenges. This is actually the first time that I have not gone home for the summer. While I miss home dearly, it’s allowed me to figure things out by myself and overcome things I never thought were possible.

I have 3 more weeks of summer camp and I start school again in a little over a month. The camp kiddos are fun and we have been doing a lot of swimming, crafts, and field activities. In between work, I have been playing some tennis and running as well as exploring this city. I have two trips planned to the west cost very soon where I’ll get to hug dear family and friends! While this summer is flying by, I certainly won’t miss the humidity!

What have you been up too?


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It’s superhero week at camp!!!

#summer2016 #stllivin #smileinsixteen

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Friends….meet my summer project! #FarmerKrista #GrowingAdventures#Peppers #Cucumber #SpaghettiSquash #Watermelon #smileinsixteen


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I love puzzles. I always have and I always will. It’s that mindless activity that I can do while watching Netflix or just to kill time. This puzzle Is special because it represents all the children’s books that were my favorites growing up. The fact that I finished this 1000 piece in about 36 hours tells me that I have way too much free time. I gotta enjoy my free time while I can!


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Look what showed up in the mail today from the best grandma ever! #smileinsixteen#favoritechildrensbook


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We have been talking about this wedding since before the engagement, and it finally happened yesterday! It was so fun to celebrate and have fun with these ladies and to see the event we talked about for so long come to life. Congrats Mr. and Mrs. Alsobrook! You have set the bar really high for the rest of us!


It’s kind of crazy how much things can change in 9 months!!! Picture on the left is from orientation; picture on the right is today at the student-faculty luncheon!

This girl has been a great buddy/mentor/big (whatever you want to call her) this year as I tackled this thing called grad school. Her advice has been so valuable and I look up to her tremendously! Thank you for all of your pep talks, advice and coffee dates and being there when I needed it! I know she will go on to do amazing things after she graduates on Friday and moves on to her first job!

I just hope that I can give my buddy next year what she had given me this year!


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This is what crazy hair day looks like! Inspired by My favorite children’s author Dr. Seuss! #crazyhairday #smileinsixteen

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I swore that I would never buy an umbrella so I could keep my Oregon roots of raincoats only. I’m embarrassed to say that because of dumping rain and severe lighting, I am now an umbrella user. Thanks Midwest weather for converting me! (Don’t worry Pacific Northwest friends, I’m still a raincoat user too!) #stllivin#smileinsixteen#midwestweather

Spontaneous ice cream run is a great way to end the week! #blessings#smileinsixteen #teddrewes

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Finding the joy in the little moments when little hands show you natures beautiful creation. #blessings #smileinsixteen #springtime



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