Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Four Foods on Friday: Candy

Here are this week’s four questions. This week they’re about candy. Hungry now? Check out what others are drooling over here

#1. Candy. Do you prefer sweet or sour candy?
Sweet (all dentists cringe now!)

#2. Gum. Love it? Hate it? What kind is your favorite?
Love it. Peppermint or Sweetmint 0rbit

#3. What is your favorite candy?
Peanut M & M's. Mix of salty sweet

#4. Share a recipe for anything that you can include a piece of candy in.
These are my "Kitchen Sink Cookies". I was trying to clean out my cabinets after holiday entertaining and here is what happened:

1/2 c. brown sugar, packed
1/2 c. white sugar
1 cup flour
1/4 c. instant vanilla pudding mix
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 egg
1/2 c margarine, softened @ room temp (NOT melted!)
1 c. broken pretzel pieces
1 c. chocolate chips
1 c. peanut M&M's
1/2 c old fashioned oats
(can also use 3/4 cup of rice krispies)

Preheat oven to 350
-cream sugars and margerine together, mix in the egg
-combine flour, salt, baking pwdr, pudding mix, and oats- gradually mix into egg mixture. Hand mixing works best with wooden spoon
-add pretzel pieces, choc chips, M&M's
-combine until add-ins are evenly spread throughout dough
-spray a cookie sheet with baking spray: drop 1 TB balls onto cookie sheet, about 12 per sheet: bake for 10-12 minutes, or until dough is starting to "tan"

*it's okay if they aren't perfect balls. The little pretzel bits sticking out the sides, are a perfect sneak peak at what's inside.

Monday, July 28, 2008

When I Grow Up...

I wanted to be:

A Hairdresser- I'd spent hours doing my friends hair, but wouldn't let a brush/comb touch my curly sue long banana curls. Then I discovered scissors and suddenly my barbies suddenly looked like her . So blame me, I started the trend.
original photo credit:

A Teacher- My mom used to find me sitting on the toilet, with the shampoo bottles lined up along the tub edge, speaking to them...uttering some sort of academic verbage. Thankfully, I moved on from shampoo bottles to dolls and my friends. I thought it was SO COOL when my dad brought home a giant, school size, chalk board from his office conference room that was being renovated. I was the only kid on the block with a class room necesity mounted on their playroom wall!

A Cashier- I thought cash registers were so cool. After years of cutting up paper (and killing lots of trees to make fake money and receipts), my parents bought me a REAL cash register like one that made receipts and beeped and chimed. Unfortunately, it didn't come with real money, but a girl can dream, right?

An Archaeologist- Digging up the greatest lost treasures of the world.
Unearthing dinosaur bones. Finding the treasure map that would lead to the hidden chest of gold. Getting the glorious tan outside under the dessert sun. Oh wait! WHAT?!?! I might see a snake? Er, no thanks. I guess I'll stick to the history channel.

A Doctor- trauma surgeon, actually. The rush of adrenaline as the gurney wheels in through the ER door. The rapid "lub-dub" of my heart beating as my beeper goes off...what sort of fun next? The satisfaction of closing up a chest after stopping the gushers from a gunshot wound. Comforting and consoling a family when they fall upon hard times. Wearing scrubs to work every day (so budget friendly)!

An Architect- I must have drafted 20 versions of my dream house. I had grand plans for renovations and additions to my parents house. I'd go on walks through new neighborhoods and browse the real esate section to look at floor plans. I filled 2 sketch books with various homes and designs. One Christmas my parents bought me home design software for the computer. It was my favorite gift that year. we no longer have the computer but under my bed at home is a box filled all my designs and the paint chips of varied color palates and the cut outs of furniture and hardware to outfit my designs.

It's funny how I never dreamt of being a nurse, yet managed to spend $200,000 on an education to become one. At the begging on my junior year in high school, I started to heavily contemplate my future. what did I want to do? What exited me? Where did I see myself? Heavy stuff for a 17 year old. I don't remember when I first considered nursing. But I do know that I got mixed reviews about my choice to attend nursing school.

My guidance counselor, a fabulous mentor, was disappointed. He thought I was settling, "Why not medical school?"

My chemistry teacher, a woman who still inspires me to this day, thought it was great. "Kelly, you are so detail oriented and organized, not to mention your compassion and friendliness, you'll be a wonderful nurse."

My English teacher, the warm and fuzzy grandmother like figure, was thrilled. "Oh good choice Kelly. We know how much you hate grammar and full sentences." (I'll never forget the look on her face. Love you Mrs. B!!)

My friends, people who had seen me at my best and worst, weren't that supportive. "You want to wipe asses all day? Ew, gross."

My aunt and uncle, always jealous over my academic achievements, thought it was just great. Their girls would clearly end up with a better paying job some day.

My best friend S, someone who always called it like she saw it, embraced the idea whole heatedly. She was going to school for OT and we knew that we'd be able to commiserate though biology, chemistry, anatomy and physiology together. She is one of the reasons I made it through.

My parents, my rocks though thick and thin, wanted me to do whatever was going to make me happy. They went to every open house, drove all around the east coast looking at schools, listened to me bitch and moan in fits of indecisiveness, wrote out all those application checks, and didn't think twice about re-mortgaging our house to send me to my top choice school. Without their support I never would have made it though college or even the application process, but when they walked me walk across that stage and receive my diploma they knew all their patience and prayers had paid off. Plus now they had a diploma receipt for their $200,000, even if it was written in Latin and no one knew what the hell it said.

As I approach the one year anniversary at my job and look back, I don't really have any regrets. Being a nurse may not have been what I originally saw myself doing... it's certainly not glamorous, I'm not in it for the money, the hours can be crappy, I deal with a lof of crap (literally)...but at the end of the day I'm learning a lot, meeting great people, making decent money, wearing scrubs to work (take that dry cleaning bills!), and proving to myself that some of life's best adventures aren't the ones you originally saw yourself completing.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Only In New York

Yesterday in Central Park there was a Transvestite on Roller-skate competition.....absolutely incredible!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Wednesday Night Dinner Club

I hosted WNDC this week.

On the menu:
*Honey Balsamic Rosemary Chicken
*Herb Roasted Potatoes
*Fresh Green Beans
*Tomato, Mozarella, Basil appetizer
*Chocolate Mouse Cake with fresh berries
and Wine...lots of wine Napa Valley Chardonay, Appellation California Pinot Noir, California Zinfandel, Abruzzi Il Bordo, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc

Next week: Craig is cooking. I think the theme is Greek. Any suggestions for a nice wine pairing?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Friends in Unexpected Places

It may or may not come as a surprise to you loyal readers that one of the first things I did when I moved to New York, actually even before I moved to New York, was join the gym. An exercise/endorphin junkie, I was thrilled that my apartment was on the same block as my apartment...I swear I didn't plan it!

I've never been one to think of gym time as socializing time. I go to sweat, clear my head, stay healthy, and (okay, I admit it) scout out cute boys hunky men. However, due to the nature of my job, I'm always there during "old people hours". 5am or 2pm...all those Wall Streeters, construction workers, and men in uniform are there at night, too bad! In any case, I'm used to seeing the same crowd. You get to know them, wave a little hello, flash a little smile. Oh, and if I ever mention to an older man or woman that I'm a nurse, I'm either immediately asked a health question, or told some story about "when they were in the hospital." I'm flattered that they are comfortable opening up to a complete stranger, or maybe I'm weirded out. haha.

Because it seemed like a great way to spend thousands of dollars a year get stronger, I hired a personal trainer. We'll call him "G.I. Greg." Greg's sarcastic attitude and humor made my grueling training sessions enjoyable and he helped knock some sense into me..."What are you doing? Is that how we train? Come on, get it together." I started giving him the finger when eh gave me too much shit. He retaliated and every time I raised that middle digits...30 squat jumps. that little finger hasn't waved in the air since December 2007.

We had been training for abbot a month when he showed up to a session with a huge cut from playing football. I gently offered my "professional advice" and he replied, "Why thank you, Nurse Kelly"...and the nick name stuck. G.I. Greg introduced me to Cheryl and we immediately hit it off. She worked in member services and I'd always pop in and say hello or she'd swing through the training area just to say hi.

As the weeks passed, I got to know most all of the other trainers. Or should I say, they all got to know me. I'd be minding my own business,getting all buff, and they'd wave across the gym and say, "Hey Nurse Kelly." Really? This is too funny. Nick names catch on quickly. I'd always share stories from work (the good, the bad, and the ugly) with G.I. Greg while training and naturally, others would hear them and ask questions. It became standing interaction, for them to ask, "Save any lives today Nurse Kelly?" Other gym members would always turn around, puzzled, and then sort of eaves drop.

In January I decided that I was going to channel my running passion and run a marathon. I began to log more and more miles each week; I was loving it. GI Greg was helping me build my core strength but he kept warning me that I was running too much, or running to fast, and not getting enough rest. I wanted to listen to him, but I couldn't. Running was like a drug, and I as hooked. I wold hop out of bed to lace up my shoes and hit the road, or even treadmill belt! G I Greg wold run with me in the park and he introduced me to other running partners

In April I got the bad news, GI Greg was going to be leaving in July for some classified federal training (yes, he has one of those cool protection jobs). We continued to rain, I trekked on. I started hanging out with Cheryl more and more. Her schedule was less hectic in the summer, as she doesn't work for the dance company. We made it a plan to do dinner on Wednesday nights. The first night was the week GI Greg left. Wait, forgot to mention, once Cheryl and GI greg are dating (it all makes sense now!)

The next week, Cheryl introduced me to her friend Gay Craig (LOVE THIS BOY!). Well had an excellent time at dinner that night, sharing stories, being silly, sharing our love of great food and wine. That night we saw Aline, another one of GI Greg's former clients, and she joined us for a drink. Before we knew it, 4 hours had passed and we were drunk and full done. Cheryl, much like GI Greg calls me Nurse Kelly. However, Craig, after a few glasses of wine decided that he was going to call me Nurse Betty (ya know, from the book and movie?). Aline, on the other hand, insisted on calling me Nurse Kelly.

Craig decided the following week that he wanted to cook on Wednesday night in lieu of going out. We waked over to Cheryl's apartment. We called Aline and she arrived bottle of wine in hand. Without even thinking, we also called Ken-a trainer and friends of GI Greg's, and came over with his wife and their adopale dog phoebe. *Simply a bonus that we all live within 4 blocks of each other* And there you have. The first official meeting of Wednesday Night Dinner Club. Our dynamics are hilarious:
Cheryl- 30 something, dancer/choreographer who works in sales at the gym
Craig- a late 20 something, who proudly makes fun of his Jewish family, works as a stylist by trade and socializes sells memberships at the gym
Aline- late 40 something with a zest and vigor for life who is absolutely crazy with an amazing husband who tolerates her hanging out with us on Wednesday nights while he plays poker
Ken- 30 something trainer and fitness guru who looks like he stepped of the beaches of Malibu, but is actually a native Long Islander
Lori- Ken's wife, who works in real esates and dablbles in calligraphy, and who sort of crashes WNDC...
Phoebe- Ken and Lori's puppy who is 100% cute, 100% wild, with so many allergies that she sneezes non-stop, and the perfect accent to WNDC.
and me- 20 something year old gym rat , somewhat recent college grad, who loves her job as a nurse and saving lives one hospital bed a time

I never would have thought that such a random group of people could have so much fun! But we do and it only goes to show that you really can find friends in unexpected places.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Four Foods on Friday: Baking Style

Here are this week’s four questions. This week Valmg is asking us about baking.

#1. When you need to serve desserts, do you buy them or make them?
Depends on the size of the party. I can make a few cookies, cakes, pies, etc....but when it comes to entertaining the masses, I might need to hire a little "help"

#2. When baking do you use butter, margarine or something else?
Depends. Butter for things that need to crisp or flaky and margarine for anything soft and chewy. I never cook with shortening.

#3. What meats or veggies do you cook in the oven?
Potatoes. It's the only way to get that soft center and crispy outside. yumm!

#4. Share a recipe for anything that is cooked in an oven.
Maple Roasted Fennel a WH0LE F00DS creation
this makes an excellent starter, or to cleanse the palate. Added bonus is the fragrance of these items marrying in the oven

8 fennel bulbs, trimmed and rinsed, outside layers removed
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon water
sea salt, to taste
ground pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350°F. Halve fennel bulbs through the root. Slice halves thinly through the root to hold the slices together. Arrange slices on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet without overcrowding them. You may need to do these in batches or use several baking sheets.

Combine maple syrup and water in a small bowl. Lightly brush each fennel slice with this mixture and season with salt and pepper. Turn each slice and repeat brushing and seasoning on other side. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until fennel is lightly browned. Remove from oven and turn all slices. Bake 8 to 10 minutes longer, until fennel is tender. Remove and serve immediately.

Monday, July 21, 2008

criteria for the "+1"

Did you ever have a conversation that by the end left you thinking, "What? How did we up on this topic?" Last night was one of those nights. I went out last night with G, our friend-his fraternity brother J, and their other frat brother M, who just got engaged to E. last week; They've been dating for seven years. Earlier in the day, they had all been at the Y@nkees game and were too tired and sweaty to go out to a fancy dinner, so we settled on a local bar for beers and appetizers. Maybe it was the heat, maybe it was that I hadn't eaten all day but my beer was do delicious, I finished it before the boys. But that's not the point.

Back to my story.

Okay, so M &E are getting married. By some serendipitous fluke, both of their parents have the same wedding anniversary, so that date in September is the obvious choice. However, they are looking at 2009, so they've got a good 14 months. Before we left for the bar, I thoroughly enjoyed sitting by and watching G & J giggle and smile with excitement as they talked about the bachelor party wedding. And then we got onto the topic of dates, ya know the special "+1" that comes on the invites.

The group was giving J a lot of shit and jokingly told him that he has 14 months to find the +1. We suggested that he begin his hunt "tonight." And with that he looked down at his shorts and said. "Does this mean I shouldn't 'mesh it' to the bar". Simultaneously we all said, "Yeah. You might want to change out of the mesh gym shorts." J goes into his room and comes out, trying to put on a belt; however, we notice that he's missing a button on the shorts. He told us, "Well the other day I ate some chicken wings, sat down, and it came." He then patted his belly in a oh so maternal kind of way and turned to reach for another pair of shorts in his closet. But what do you know! 2 more pairs, without buttons. So either J needs to go on a diet, or find a girl who sews. Speaking of finding a girl, once we were at the bar, and all had a few drinks in us, we asked J to make a list of deal breakers when it comes to a girl. Brace yourself, here we go:
1. non-smoker
2. Piercing: only ears and belly button
3. Tattoos: preferably not, but a tasteful, discretely placed would be okay
4. Must love meat
5. Must be willing to "rub his belly" (apparently its okay if this doesn't occur on date #1)
6. Not skinny, he likes a little "something to grab"
7. Jewish, ideally, although he did say he'd take a normal non Jew, to an ugly Jew
8. Must have 2 boobs, uniboob won't do. Really? haha
9. brunette, then blonde. Guess, there are too many red headed Jews?
10. Likes Loves Beer
11. Can cook
12. Likes to spoon AND have sex
13. in relationship to #13, he's willing to wait a while
14. Would want to go to a Mets/Yankees game with him, but if he got tickets to a Sox/Yankees game she'd tell him to go with friends
15.Willing to hang with the guys

and there you have it. J's criteria for his "+1". So if you know any female ages 20-24, that fit the above criteria, and are free in September sure they inquire. haha

Saturday, July 19, 2008

To Fill In My Past

Looking back over my blog entries, I noticed a trend...I really haven't written much about boys and dating (or lack there of). There are a few scattered posts, but nothing significant. When I started this blog, 2 years ago, it was a way for me to chronicle my adventures through senior year of college and recollect fond memories from the previous three years. I've half-heartedly stuck to my plan; however, now this blog is more of a personal diary, if you consider "personal" that which is read by people who I don't know and maybe never will.

God, I'm off topic again. Yes, back to dating. I figured that I'd start to fill in some of the gaps. This way it's on record for me and you can be entertained, maybe.

When this blog was born, a rather interesting summer had just ended. Let me take you back there…

At the end of my junior year I was seeing a boy in the med school. I thought all was great, especially seeing as I was staying in Philly over the summer to work at CHOP. What I failed to recognize was that he was essentially in school all summer going back and fourth to clinical sites, just like I had been all school year. We spent some great time together, conversation was incredible, and let's just say that he was a good host in the few days when I was homeless in between apartment leases. However, then he went out to , PA and we were apart for a few weeks. I was working at the hospital, so it was common for us to play phone tag. At first, the calls still came, but then they were less and less. On July 2nd, I actually managed to get a hold of him on the phone. He asked me my plans for the 4th and I said that I was planning on heading down to the fireworks and street fair with some friends. I asked him the same question. He mumbled something about meeting up with friends for a bbq later in the day. I could sense a distance in his voice, but he told me was just exhausted. He asked if I wanted to meet up for brunch on the morning of the 4th. Odd? I thought, but agreed.

I had that feeling in the pit of my stomach that something was up, but I tried to let it go.

I got up early on the 4th and went for a long run...yes, in the 90 degree heat. I needed to de-stress. He arrived at my apartment around 11 and came to the back door. I welcomed him in, offered him a drink, and a seat. He sort of looked nervous, hands in pockets, rocking back and forth in his shoes and quickly suggested that we go grab some food. We walked up the block to M@rathon and were quickly seated… next to 2 of his friends. I got the sense he wanted to move our seats, but the restaurant was busy. He was sort of an a$$. He said hi to his friends and gabbed for a minute. He didn't introduce me. I introduced myself, "Hi, I'm Kelly." He followed with, "Oh, yeah, fri...she's in the nursing school."
Smooth, real smooth.

We ordered our food and made small talk, a huge change from the great conversation usually shared between us. I thought I was going to be sick. I knew where this was going and I just wanted it to be done. SAY IT ALREADY!

Then the bill came. Don't get me wrong, chivalry has a time and place, but this is modern day and I have no problem paying for my own food. I always offer. However, he had never let me pay before, so it did surprise me when I pulled out my money and he said, "Well, can you leave $15?" Uh, okay.

We got up and walked out. No hand holding, barely a door hold. We walked back, briskly, to my apartment and, again, I invited him inside. We sat on my futon and conversation seemed painful. And then he turned to me and said, "Soo...I'm not sure how you feel, but I've done a lot of thinking, especially since I was away..."
Wait, are we defining this 'relationship' or ending it?
"And what I realized is that, I don't have the time to give you....that you deserve...for this relationship"
I swallowed hard, "Uh, hunh."
"I think you're great, but we are at different points in our life. We're both just so busy, ya know?"
So now he's deciding that I'm too busy? Okay, whatever. But wait, did he just do that? He actually defined and ended the 'relationship’ in the same breath. Never heard that one before.
He looked at me and said, "This is okay with you, right?"
Erg, how do you respond to that? I'm assuming it's more of a rhetorical question.
"I understand. We've each got our own stuff going on…” I took a deep breath.
"Really? Great!"

He then attempted to go on and make normal conversation. I was hurt and really just wanted to ask him to leave. I could only hold back the tears for so long and swallow the lump in the throat so many times.
After a seemingly eternal five minutes, he got up and left. No hug, no hand shake, just the head nod (yes, the head buck forward that seems almost gangsta).

He left, I closed the door, curled up in bed, and cried. Why I was upset. It's not like we were dating, or that it had been clearly established. But as I let the tears roll, I realized I was upset because I was sad. I had every right to be sad. I lost a friend and felt like the above transpired events were one sided. Maybe I wished I could have spoken my mind, maybe not.

I've always been a quiet person. Not emotionless, but quiet. I’m a thinker and listener. I take it all in and analyze it…then I speak my mind. I'd forgo an argument if it seemed pointless. I believe we are all entitled to our own opinions and why argue over a minute point if you know you'll never change their mind, that they will see your lips move but be mute to the sound. I kept wondering, should I have said something? Would I have felt better?

In the end, it all worked out for the best. I was lucky enough to be surrounded by a great group of friends that night who didn't let me sulk in solitude. They dragged me out and we had a fantastic night watching the fireworks, rain showers and all.

After a few days, the sting subsided, and I went about my life. Good friends, great memories, and fear not, a few other boys came along that summer. A few months into senior year, I bumped into the boy and we had a great conversation. We decided to meet for lunch the next day. (Am I a glutton for punishment? Maybe.) We talked about the rest of the summer, his clinical rotations, my clinical rotations, his thoughts on residency, my thoughts on moving to the Big Apple and passing my boards. He seemed happy and secure, as was I. And at that moment, I knew I had made the right choice months before. He hadn't ended our fling to spite me, he did it for himself, and I'm okay with that. In this world that we live in, sometimes you just have to do what's right for you, because you know yourself best. He needed to take the time to get his plans figured out and didn’t want to deal with splitting his time. Note* I may have better perspective now on why we broke it off, but he could still use a few tips on how to let someone down in a more precise and less drawn out manner.

Friday, July 18, 2008

It's Friday! And This Is My Four Foods Post

According to Valmg, "If you’ve got a working sniffer you can play". So why don't you hop on over to her blog and check out this meme!
#1. Fruits and veggies. Do you prefer them peeled or not?
Unpeeled, but they need to be thoroughtly washed. I use this fruit and veggie wash.

#2. What’s your favorite fresh fruit or vegetable smell?
It's a tie between pineapple and oragnes

#3. What’s the worst food smell you’ve ever smelled?
Olives. I love shopping in the gourmet/specialty food shops, but I have to run through the fresh olive section. Makes me want to heave.

#4. Share the recipe for the dish that you love to smell cooking in your oven.
Dutch Apple Cake: inspired by an recpe

3 apples - peeled, cored and cut into thin wedges
3 tablespoons white sugar
2tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup raisins

3 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2/3 cup fresh orange juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 10 inch Bundt pan. In a medium bowl, combine the apples, raisins, 5 tablespoons sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.

Sift together the flour and baking powder; set aside. In a large bowl, mix together the eggs and sugar. Stir in the oil, vanilla and orange juice, mixing until blended. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the orange juice mixture. Stir just until combined.

Layer batter and apple mixture in the prepared pan, beginning and ending with the batter. Bake in the preheated oven for 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Diagnosis Is... (the grammatically correct version)

I know you have all been dying in suspense (oh no wait, that was me) but on Thursday I finally found out what's wrong with me. Like I mentioned in this post, the doctor was 99% sure that I had stress fracture in the neck of femur aka a hip fracture. I had the MRI and then had to wait 2 weeks to get the results.

My appointment was for 9:30 am Thursday morning. All day Wednesday my mind was in a fog and I couldn't focus. I guess I didn't make the best choice by going out and getting a bit tipsy that night, but I thought it would help me sleep. Erg, WRONG. I fell asleep immediately upon crawling into bed, but was wide awake 3 hours later with my mind running a thousand miles an hour.

I think I managed to dose off around 6:30 a.m., only to be waken by my alarm at 8:15. I jumped out of bed, took a quick shower, and got dressed. I felt like a bipolar person. MY mind was all over the place, vacillating from good to bad back to good and then to awful. At 9, I walked out the door and made the 4 block walk to the doctors office. Within minutes I was called into the room and I sat there-on the crisp white paper- in the cotton hospital shorts, my legs so white they blended in with the paper, my heart racing. Dr. M knocked on the door and came in. He heartily shook my hand and asked how I was feeling. I told that I was feeling slightly better, but that the pain was still there.

Silence....God I hate that!

He logged into the computer and pulled up my MRI. He spent a minute trying to orient me to my anatomy but all I heard was "blah blah blah blah....bone should be black....blah blah blah....all this is white, that's inflammation"
Okay, now I needed to focus. I put my best listening ears on (ouy, I've been babysitting too much lately, haha) and then he said, "So much to my surprise your femur is okay...."

Wahwhoooooo! Horray! Yes, sweet! Oh yeah baby!

"But see this here..."

wait, is he still talking? was that a "but"

"That's your pubic ramus and that's a mighty big fracture."

My stomach came up my throat and my heart sank.

"What this tell us is that you are one tough cookie. Most people with this injury can barely walk, let alone continue to train."

I had to compose myself and fight back tears. The conversation that followed left me so upset. Basically I'm on activity restriction for another 4 weeks, my September marathon is out, and this upcoming week I have to go have a DEXA scan done.

This battle is just beginning. Now that we have a diagnosis, we need to figure out why it happened. My PT evaluation already revealed a substantially weakened left side, but it's more a chicken or the egg question. Is it weak because it's injured, or did the weakness lead to the injury. The bone scan will show the condition of my bones, yet another test I'm dreading. Once I get those results, I'll have a better idea of where I stand.

However, it's odd that I find myself in this predicament. I've known for over 7 years that I have low bone density. One of the treatments for LBD is weight bearing activity (strength training and impact activities) but I already do those. I also take a calcium supplement. I'm sure you have all seen the commercials for the osteoporosis medications like Act0nel, B0niva, F0smax, but they aren't approved for women of childbearing age because they have uncertain teratogenic effect on fetuses.

And let's be honest, I don't want to decide, at the ripe old age of 23, that I want to forgo having kid for the sake of a medication that could be obsolete in 10 years.

So where does that leave me? I don't know.

What I do know is that my PT regimen is grueling. I hurt so much afterwards, I want to cry. I also know that this injury has forced me back into the pool, something that I never though would happen. I swam competitively for 12 years but gave it up college; I haven't set foot in lane lined pool since high school. My reasons for leaving swimming behind are for another post, but I found myself in tears yesterday when I went to the store to buy a cap and goggles.

Today I made the emotional plunge back into the pool. After PT I made my way to the locker room, suited up, walked out onto the deck, and then stood at the edge of the pool. I grabbed a kick board, pull buoy, paddles, and fins. I jumped in and just started to swim. After less than 25 yards, it felt like I had never left the pool. My upper body still carried my stoke, I still preferred breathing to my left side, I still stroked with my left hand right preceding a flip turn...

My body didn't ache like when I'd be out of swimming shape in between seasons, but I felt sore, from using different muscles. I swam for about an hour and by the end I was tired; however, I didn't want to stop. Something in me wanted to keep going, keep pushing. I was tired and sore, but not in agony. Wait, something is wrong with that mentality. I'm never going to get better if I keep pushing to injury. I'm an addict, an endorphin junkie. Working out, the endorphin high, and the stress release is like crack to an addict.


Now, off to work, and let the waiting begin (again)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Four Foods on Friday: Party Edition

Want to see how everyone else entertains? Go on over to Valmg's blog and check out Four Foods on Friday week # 30!

#1. Cake. Buttercream, whipped cream or ice cream?
Buttercream frosting is classic in my house.

#2. When entertaining do you use real, paper, plastic or styrofoam dishes?
Real dishes (a few too many accidents with disposable dishwear breaking!)

#3. When hosting a party do you cook, have it catered or go to a restaurant?
99% of the time I cook. Sometimes I'll cheat and have a few dishes made and serve them along with the homemade stuff!

#4. Share a recipe that you frequently serve when having a party.
Spinach Stuffed Portabella Mushroms

2 cups Parsley
2 teaspoons Garlic
.5 cup choppd Onion
3.5 servings Leaf Spinach, Frozen
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
2 tablespoons Butter
6 Portabello Mushroom Raw
1 egg
.5 cups Breadcrumbs
1/3 cup Parmesan, Grated Cheese
1/3 cup goat cheese

Portabello mushrooms sauteed in olive oil and butter and placed aside.
Onion cooked until translucent.
Mix the thawed/drained spinach, breadcrumbs, egg, onion, parlsely, cheese, and garlic.
Stuff the Mushrooms stuffed with spinach mixture.
Melt the butter, and lightly drizzle atop the mushroom caps.
Srpinkle goat cheese on top of caps.
Put in 350 degree oven for 40 minutes.
Remove, let cool for 5 minutes, enjoy!

Monday, July 07, 2008

that itch you can't scratch

I finally realized why I have a secret yearning to go back to school. No, it's not that I like having an "excuse" to stay in on Friday nights, that I enjoy being in debt, that I thrive under stress, that I love wearing logo hoodies and flip flops in the middle of winter, but IT IS that sense of being and involvement.

In high school, but even more so, college, I found myself joining more and more groups, attending more meetings that could seemingly git into a day, and of course meeting new people and challenging myself to try new things. It's no hidden fact that I came into my own in college. I was the quiet, well liked over-achiever in high school, but hadn't found that balance of work and play. I worked hard at the expense of play, and when I did play I always felt out of my element.

FLash forward to college... FREEDOM! I didn't know a soul and I was forced to make friends; however, I made friends with people because I wanted to be friends with them, not because we had been in the same school for 12 years and went to church together and played town sports together, etc. I suddenly found myself in a sorority, held elected positions within the organization, was elected secretary of the class of 2007 for three years, worked in student services, volunteered my nursign services in the west Philadelphia community, etc. I could go on, but you get the point.

After graduation, my main focus was studying for and passing the NCLEX; finding an apartment in NYC; starting my job; passing all my additional certifications; settling intot he city. I've been here a year now and all of the aforementioned are done. I still see my friends from college, NYC is a hub for Penn alums, but lately I've found myself checking out grad school more and more frequently. I know I am on defferment at Penn until 2010, but Im still torn if I'll go back. It won't be the same the second time around, and it would mean leaving New York. So if it's not about my friends, or wanting to leave New York, why am I longing to go back to school?

"Ahh, there's the rub". I miss that invovlement. I need to get more involved here. Over the last week, I've done lots of searching and found quite a few groups to join.
1) CHI-O alumna NYC chapter
2) Junior League of NYC
3) Meals on Wheels

I already volunteer at the church and teach sunday school, but I'm still itching for more. Maybe I want to become more well rounded, or maybe I'm just crazy and enjoy being overbooked and super involved. Whatever it is, I've got an itch and it needs scratching. If you have ever found yourself in my shoes, please send along any suggestions or ideas you may have...I can't wait !

thanks and happy monday!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

A little FFoF to kick off Independence Day

Valmg's still at it...posing questions about food, cooking, and eating! If this sounds like something you'd like, join her weekly Four Foods on Friday MEME.

#1. Name your biggest cooking influence.
Curiosity. I swear, the more I think about things, the more I have to try to make and/or recreate

#2. What is your ultimate comfort food?
Oatmeal raisin cookies (soft ones) and my moms' homemade spaghetti sauce [but not together, haha!]

#3. Name one must have tool that you think every kitchen should have.
A vegetable peeler. It's not just for peeling carrots and potatoes anymore! You can peel apples, make fancy chcoclate garnishes, thinly slice cheese, ribbon cut long vegetables. Seriously. it's a wonder tool.

#4. Share a time saving tip.
Mix up your pancake batter in your blender,
then pour right out of your container onto the
griddle. You'll have lump-free batter and lots
less to clean up.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

A Rant of Sorts

I've blogged (many times) about the interesting dynamics of my patients and their situations and circumstances. We have a running joke at work that no normal people get burned. Not quite true; however,the normal ones are usually victim to some freak situations.

Some of the odder injuries and/or mechanisms of injuries include:
-sitting on a pot of boiling water
-trying to throw a burning mattress out a porthole window
-Icyhot on the genitals
-man hole steam explosion
-building implosion from gas explosion
-smoking while polyurethaning some wood--POOF!
-smoking in bed, while wearing oxygen

At any given time, we have at least two or three homeless people on our unit. I'm not passing judgment, because we are only only just a few paychecks away from being that way our self...

Anyways, this last week I was taking of an undomiciled man, or at least one of temporary transient housing as he liked to call it. I had a really hard time with this man. Not because he was homeless, but because of his behavior.

#1. He refused to shower-he had bugs on him. Not enough peppermint spirits in the supply room to mask this odor

#2 He complains about the food- sorry, forgot to tell you the 5 star chef is on vacation.

#3. After vomiting, he refused to let me remove it. Thought it he might need it later. For what?

#4. Stated reasoning for #3 was that "he might get hungry again later". Are you bulimic or burned?) Sorry, that comment was rather tactless

#5. Patient refused to be washed but requested that I cut his talons toenails. Sorry pal, I didn't bring my chain saw to work today

#6. Peanut butter. He couldn't get enough. He stockpiled it, took it of another person's dirty tray, ate it with his fingers-his dirty, bug laden, fingers

#7. Attitude. When I asked him if he wanted his meds before or after his wound care, he told me to get the "F" out of his room...he'd let me know later. Umm, so I'll take that as a later?

Okay, I just needed to vent and get that off my chest. Thanks for listening.