Thursday, June 30, 2011

Motherhood & Mortality

Heather Armstrong of has been one of my favorite bloggers for a long time.  She recently returned from Bangladesh to a flurry of nasty things being said about her, both in the Guardian and by certain choice members on twitter (I'm sure there are plenty more, I just stopped looking).  I think what's being said about her is pretty atrocious; she's just trying to raise some awareness about issues in other countries that need our attention, and all she is guilty of is using her HUGE following to do exactly that: RAISE AWARENESS!!

OK, now that I'm off the soapbox on that one...

What she, along with Christy Turlington, did bring my attention to (I sort of already knew this from nursing school, but it's not hammered home enough) is that the United States has one of the highest infant and maternal mortality rates (particularly among women of color) IN THE WORLD!  And we're a first world country, people!!

Amnesty International created this graphic to raise awareness and I'm going to repost it because I think it should be plastered everywhere.  This is something that needs attention, and we need to work to correct it.  Mothers in the country should not be dying from pregnancy and the things that follow it.  It's simply not good enough.  We need better care.

You can read all about it in this article here.

Graphic courtesy of Amnesty International

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Party with a Purpose

It's official...I've lost my mind!

I just signed up to run my first 5K, AND I'm doing it the day AFTER NCLEX and the day before my IV Certification's insane...

BUT...I figure if I don't just sign up and DO IT, then I'm never going to do it.

The timing may not be the best, but the Party with a Purpose race benefits all local children's charities, and my friend Julia (who runs marathons, talk about intense!) is going to run with me to pace me.

Not gonna lie, I'm kinda excited!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Printed Pillow Cases

I'm always looking for an inexpensive way to add some flavor to my apartment, and I think I just found a way to spruce up a tired set of bed linens (courtesy of a post on Design*Sponge).  Enter Kin Ship Press!

These pillow cases are just so cute...I think I must have them.

Photos courtesy of Kin Ship Press

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Honey Badger Don't Care...

Am I the last one to hear about this video??

While surfing my Google Reader tonight, I came across this post from Door Sixteen, followed by this post on Elephantine, which caused me to say out loud: "What is all this craziness about the honey badger, and why haven't I heard of it before?"

So I immediately watched the video, then visited Jen Ray's etsy shop, and immediately purchased this "Honey Badger Don't Care" mug...because it's simply fabulous, despite it's $25 price tag!

Photo by Jen Ray

Bathroom Dreams

I read tons of design blogs and websites on a daily basis, and despite how much I love my current condo and the way I've decorated it, I always am lusting after other types of decor.  And when I read this post on Apartment Therapy today, which linked to this photo, I had another item to add to my lust list.

I love the simplicity of the black and white decor with the added pop of hot pink!  If I could redecorate, this is definitely a look I would want to capture!

Photo by House Beautiful

Sunday, June 19, 2011

On Vacation: Turks & Caicos

I haven't posted in a few days.  I'm definitely behind on my goal to blog things every day, but alas...there's not really much going on when you're on a beach retreat in the Caribbean; Turks and Caicos to be exact!

As I mentioned right when I started this blog, I've been trying to take a healthier approach to life, including both my job prospectus and how I care for my body, both what I put in my mouth, and my exercise program.

This "face lift" included trying to eat "clean."  I've been reading Tosca Reno's books, and I've been learning a lot, but as anyone who has tried to amend their eating habits knows, that it's not only difficult in the beginning, but it's SUPER difficult in the beginning when you're on vacation.

I've been doing my best; I've been ordering fish "dry" in restaurants, I brought a lot of my own foods, particularly breakfast ones, so I can start my day off right (that way I'm more likely to stick to my Clean plan), and I've been working out.  Hopefully when I get back and see my trainer, he won't be too disappointed in my, maybe he'll even be proud of me...who knows!

Photo by Style Blueprint 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Clean Raspberry Muffins

Today was my first true day of "cooking clean."

I made these red pepper shrimp for dinner (sans the grits), the recipe can be found here, and some rockin' raspberry muffins for dessert/breakfast.  I attempted to make them clean by reading various things on the internet for hits as to how much honey/agave to substitute for sugar, and how much applesauce you can substitute for butter, etc.  It wasn't the easiest thing to figure out, but I managed somehow, and here's the final product.

Lookin' good, right?

So here's the recipe, including both the original, and my substituted version, so you can try either one and still have DELICIOUS muffins.  Enjoy!

Raspberry Muffins
Makes 12 Muffins

2 cups flour whole wheat pastry flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 cup sugar 2/3 cup agave
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cups frozen raspberries
pinch salt
1 cup milk
1 stick butter 1/4 stick butter, melted + 1/2 cup applesauce

Preheat the oven to 400 350 degrees.  Grease 12 muffin cups.

In a large bowl stir together flour, sugar agave, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, stir together milk, butter + applesauce, egg, and vanilla until blended.  Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, add milk mixture to just combine.  Add frozen raspberries and stir into batter with a few quick strokes.

Spoon batter into muffin cups.  Bake 20-25 minutes (keep checking as a lower fat recipe will cook faster) until a cake tester inserted in the center of the muffins comes out clean.

Remove muffins and cool for 5 minutes before removing from cups.

So this was my first attempt at baking clean, and it went well, except for one thing.  When I was doing my research online, I read that you should substitute 1 cup of white flour for 7/8 a cup of whole wheat pastry flour.  When I did this, my batter was completely liquid, SO I just kept adding more whole wheat pastry flour by the spoonful until it thickened up.  I ended up adding 3-4 more spoonfuls, which I would equate to just over 2 full cups of whole wheat pastry flour.  So if you end up trying this, and it's just a bit too soupy, just add a bit more flour!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Avocado Toast!

After tonight's Clean dinner of grilled salmon with sauteed broccoli and garlic, I was still a bit peckish, so I tried out Tiffany's Clean avocado toast.  It's not  something that I've ever had before, but it's definitely something that I'll be having over again and again...completely delicious!!

Day Two

So today I tried something new!  I attended the first of a two-day advanced cardiac life support class, or ACLS.

It was actually quite exciting!  Yesterday I completed a adult cardiac rhythm identifican online class to help me recognize the various cardiac arrhythmias, and today I learned how to treat them.  The class is taught by paramedics, who I admire immensely, as I've worked with them in my EMT days, and their skill levels are off the charts!  It helped that one of them was seriously attractive too...but that's another issue altogether.

Anyway, it was a really great day, and I feel like I learned a lot.  It also felt like I was learning real skills.  It's hard to describe, but it felt completely different from when I learned things in nursing school.  Perhaps that's because my fellow classmates are, for the most part, already nurses, some who have been RNs for the past 20+ years.  I can't exactly put my finger on it, but it felt good.  Oh, and I learned to intubate today too! It's a lot harder than it looks, those vocal cords are tricky little suckers!

Now, I must get back to my ACLS book so I can pass the more thing to add to my resume.  God I hope I find a job soon!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Lighthouse Carafe

So as I was reading my Real Simple while on vacation, I came across this fabulous little lighthouse carafe. I think I'm in love!  I may just have to purchase this and give it to my aunt at her annual fourth of July just screams summer at the shore, no?

Day One

I don't know if I should start out labeling, or numbering, my activities for each day, because I know there's now way that I'll be able to maintain this sort of thing, at least not after I find an RN job (sending good Karmic waves out there!), but why not attempt to start out right, right?

So today was my first trip back from a truly wonderful vacation.  As a graduation present, my family went on a 10-day Mediterranean cruise, followed by 11 days touring Spain.  It was really a wonderful experience, but a tad bit on the long side.  Not that I'm ungrateful, or want anyone to think I'm complaining, but 24 days is a LONG time to be gone, especially when you're sharing rooms with your parents at the age of 26. 

So today was my first full day back to my normal life.  I woke up at 4 am (thank you jet lag!) and created this blog.  I figured I'd get a jump start on this new step in my life.

I also began researching "Clean Eating."  I think this is exactly what I need -- especially after approximately 24 days of "binge eating" all the fabulous foods I came across while in Europe, including a chocolate croissant every morning for breakfast...but that's another store all together. 

So this evening, I spent about an hour strolling through the local Whole Foods picking out fresh produce and reading nutrition labels.  I've learned a lot by reading Tiffany's site, The Gracious Pantry, and think that others who are interested in Clean Eating could benefit by reading some of her stuff. 

Oh, and today was also my first day back to the gym; coupled with my first session with my personal trainer in close to a month.  All I can say is that I am going to HURT tomorrow!!  But I know it'll be worth it.  I have to lose the pound I gained on vacation, plus about another 10-15, and I know that working out and eating clean will not only help me feel better, but they will also help me accomplish my goals. Carpe Diem, right?

A New Beginning

So how else to start my "new life" as a nurse than by starting a blog to document all the changes that are happening in my life.

So, a little background, I suppose is required...

I've had a couple of blogs in my day; one was supposed to be strictly nursing-related, documenting my journey through nursing school, the highs and lows, etc., and I found myself feeling guilty if I wanted to post something that wasn't nursing-related.  I felt limited, so I removed that blog and created one on Posterous.  I used the same blog name, but found that it was too niche-d, and I felt like I should still be posting about nursing, when all I really wanted to do was post a photo of some random street mime covered in blue I think I'm going to abandon that as well. 

This site will encompass all aspects of my life, from the random photos I snap, to revelations in my daily relationships, to my search for a job, and hopefully some of my more amusing (but completely HIPPA-proof) "war-stories."

I'm glad you've stopped by...enjoy the ride!
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