Friday, May 30, 2008

Day 3 of Vacation

Meg woke me up with a delicious breakfast of eggs, veggie sausage patties, bagels, and rosemary potatoes. We drank french press coffee and slowly woke for the day.

We drove into downtown Asheville, did some shopping at Malaprop's Bookstore, and drank lattes. It was a beautiful day for a casual city stroll and good conversation. She is one of my most genuine and favorite friends....writing this makes me feel a little sad that we can't be together more often. Then I was introduced to the wonderful world of Amazing Savings: "One of Asheville's best kept secrets. Organic and natural foods at 50% to 80% off because they are either almost out of date or they are out of date or just overstocked." Can you even believe this? We bought stuff there for $.99 that you would buy at the regular grocery for $5.00!! They had my cereal, luna bars, organic fruits, veg, spices!!! It was insane the discounts to be found there! I would be SET FOR LIFE if I had one around my house. Can you imagine..Trader Joes AND Amazing Savings?!

After I was all riled up from money saving we decided to wind the hell down with some drinks and sunshine at the Root Bar and played Root Ball, a game I had heard a lot about from Meg but had never played. It's a super fun and easy outdoor game. The day was true blue summer....with sand between our toes on the court, dogs frolicking under foot, good beer in hand and lots of friendly folks.

Then. Then! The grand finale of the day: we went to Empire Tattoo (the birthplace of several of Meg's gorgeous tattoos) and I got this delightful treat with my sweet husbands blessing from across the country. It was kind of a spur of the moment...but not really. I had wanted this tattoo for a long time, but with a peony bloom. However, I'll soon be getting a larger piece with peonies and I didn't want to be the incredible peony tattoo lady. So, I changed the flower to a branch of the Tulip Poplar tree, a beautiful sight I had only seen in Asheville. The day before I went a little nuts and took a million pictures of one on campus. In memory of this great trip: the branch and bloom. And the quote: from memories of a childhood filled with Cat Stevens records, a line from my all time favorite song in life, "The Wind". (not great quality sound in this link, but the best I could do).

Big Happy Smiles.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

I'm a NURSE. A real NURSE. On my own. From now on.

I made it through my first two days unscathed!!

I wasn't coddled by my co-workers either. (I've worked at the hospital on this same unit for the last 6 years as a unit secretary and nurses assistant) I've had two really busy days and now their over...I feel great!

The best thing about being on my own is I don't have to conform to another persons way of organizing their day and priorities. I can do it all on my own and if I have questions or need a second opinion I have a lot of resources around me.

The worst part about these last two days (thankfully) is that yesterday I got my period...and I forgot to put deodorant on, and we all know how hormones during this special time can make us sweat and be a little more fragrant. And I didn't realize this until AFTER I started to smell like a sweaty 8th grader. I put some deodorant on from the patient supply room...but it was too late. I had to run around all day with my arms plastered to my sides like an Irish Dancer.

Just call me Michael Flatley, RN.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Oops, I crapped my pants! (old SNL skit.....anyone?)

I'm totally shitting my pants right now.

I was fine until about 10 minutes ago when I came to the true realization that I am going to be on the floor tomorrow as a nurse BY MYSELF. I won't have my preceptor at my beckon call to help me when I am feeling overwhelmed by my patient load. I won't have someone right next to me to bounce ideas off of or ask stupid questions of. I am ON MY OWN. Tomorrow is that day that I have worked towards for so long and it is giving me diarrhea.


Also, now that I am on 12 hour days 3x/week I can finally get back into my normal yoga and workout routine. It has been such a struggle to find the time and energy to devote to my personal fitness goals. My body is in misery.

Here is a list I wrote tonight thinking about why it is important to eat right and exercise regularly:
1) Prevent Diabetes, Stroke, Heart Disease, Hypertension, High Cholesterol, Cancer, & Kidney Disease. All things that come with the territory of being overweight.

2) Increase my energy level and release stress and tension, in turn decreasing my risk of stress related physiologic changes

3) Be a better example for my patients and future children

4) Increase fertility

5) Improve my self image

Back to being scared. My God. I am so nervous right now.
I know I can do it. I'm just friggin' terrified.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Day Two Of Vacation

Meg had to be up at 7:45am to start checking out the freshmen that she manages as a Resident Director. I was allowed to sleep in a woke to hear a familiar voice in the living was Peter, a long time friend of Meg's. He and I had a met a few years back when I was at WWC for a visit. The three of us went to breakfast, caught up on each others lives, and then Meg and I packed up her car with some of her stuff and headed to out the her summer destination, Wellspring Adventure Camp (WAC), where she'll be the Field Director. On the way we stopped a Filo, a wonderful little Greek cafe with homemade morning treats, breads, and espresso. We bought some Black Bottom Macaroons and iced lattes and headed up the Blue Ridge Parkway for a magnificent drive to camp. The Smokey Mountains have some of the most beautiful views that I've seen to date, no matter how many times I drive this Parkway, I am always breathless. Meg told me the story of the young Native American boy Falling Rock, and we arrived at camp. When we pulled up, our EMT training kicked in and our adrenaline started pumping. There was a firetruck, news vands, and a helicopter. We were sure there had been a terrible accident with the staff at WAC. Luckily that wasn't the case, however something just as tragic had a occured. The previous Tuesday a man and his son crash their small plane in the mountains above camp. Their bodies had been removed the day before and this day they were removing the wreckage. The helicopter was to fly up to the crash site, tether up the plane, and then fly it to the field at camp where it would be placed on a truck bed and sent to Atlanta for investigation. We watched the helicopter take off into the mountainside, but he returned emptied handed as it was too windy and dangerous to complete.

Meg and I took her dog, Stella, for a swim in the river with some other dogs, chatted with her fellow staff for the summer, and unloaded some of her stuff in their room. be a transient hippie outdoor educator once again. What a life.
We left camp, headed back to Asheville a different way, through some old towns that we had explored the first time we were ever in NC together on a road trip to her college to check it out. It was a trip of a lifetime.

When we arrived back home we were beat. We ate some lunch and proceeded to watch trashy TV for a few hours, including Keeping Up With The Kardashians and American Gladiator. Our plan was to wait until her partner, Lark arrived home from her latest Outward Bound trip (she's and instructor) and then head out to see a local band. Plans changed, as Lark got home late and we were all pooped, so Meg and I made a trip to the grocery store for Movie Food and we settled in for the night to watch Superbad and drink beer under snugly quilts with Reese's Pieces and popcorn.


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Day One of Vacation: A Summary

Hey all I am back!

I had an amazing time in Asheville, NC with one of my most Best and Dearest Friends, Meg. We had such a great in her world is such a vacation from my reality, and here's why: she lives on campus as a Resident Director in her own little 2 BR 2 BTH apartment at Warren Wilson College, complete with deck and Brazilian hammock. WWC is the most beautiful and quaint college campus in the world, nestled in a valley of the Great Smokey Mountains...with a fully functioning organic farm. A cafeteria that serves cheap, organic (from the college farm and surrounding farms) food, as well as a little cafe called the Cow Pie that is 100% organic and VEGAN. Not that I am vegan or anything, but when I can, I eat that way because I love too! The dorms are spread out all over campus and many of them have different themes. The Wellness dorm is a place you can live if you want to be free of drugs and alcohol and commit to a lifestyle of wellness. The Eco Dorm is completely sustainable, solar powered, with composting, and their own organic garden out front. Etc Etc. I will post pics soon, I can't today because I left the "special cord" that does that sort of thing in Meg's living room.

Day 1:
I arrived in Asheville, NC. Meg picked me up all hopped up on coffee and Full Throttle energy drinks, smoking a cigarette. This day was her last day of school and she had been up since 4am (it was now 11am) working on a final project. She had gotten only 2 hours of sleep. We went to her last class EVER for her Outdoor Leadership major (she has a second major she is finishing up next semester in History). We had a great few hours in her Social Justice class doing initiatives for a presentation of a fellow classmate and engaging in thoughtful discussions. Not what I had expected on a vacation, but so wonderful and thought provoking. I miss those days from when I went to Prescott College, in Prescott, AZ for Adventure Education. There is something so familiar about that day that I didn't know I missed.
After, we mellowed out and chatted over Hawaiian Pizza before heading to Pisgah Brewery to meet up with some folks. Totally organic...totally amazing beer. Meg brings me a jug each Christmas. I emailed them about 6 months ago, asking if they could send me a case. They said that they didn't ship and that I'd have to wait until next Christmas when my friend could bring me more beer (crazy beer hippies). Luckily, I didn't have to wait that long. The crazy thing about this brewery is that it's only open to the public on Thursday nights. So, you go in, buy your jugs of beer to stock up for the week, listen to live music, and drink beer inside the very warehouse where they make the beer. They sell to surrounding I was able to enjoy a few more pints through out the next 5 days, thankfully.
Since school was out for summer, we had a lot of socializing to do and goodbyes to say. We went to Meg's friend, Emily's house and drank a few more pints, burned veggie burgers on the stove, and played Catchphrase for the next 4 hours. My throat was sore from screaming the answers (I get very into this game) and from laughing uncontrollably. Emily is interesting, to say the least. She is a dread-headed, gay, 20 year old woman. She had just completed a half-ironman triathlon,is a double major in Outdoor Leadership and Environmental Chemistry, does Ham radio with her dad and is certified in doing so...I had no idea you could be certified in that. In fact, in her home town of Lansing, MI, her house is the tallest point, because of their ham radio antenna. She can also do Morse Code. Once I found this out, I proceeded to make tapping noises with my beer bottle on the coffee table in "sequence" asking her translate for the next 15 minutes. I would highly recommend this to anyone who is drunk and happens to have a drunk friend over who is fluent in Morse code. She was the funniest and coolest person I had met in a really long time. (sounds nerdy-but is true)

The night ended with me sharing my latest Us Weekly with Meg and explaining to her who all the people are in the magazine as she is fairly removed from that sort of crap. We had a late night best friend chat and then passed out for the night.

A great first day.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Week 2- Slacker Edition


I'm a terrible blogger.

I know, I know. I didn't post the week two picture of the Bathing Suit Challenge.
I have excuses, they involve me being tired and busy. Family time for Mothers Day. In my spare moments, getting ready for vacation.

Yep. I'm going on vacation. I'm going to hang in North Carolina for 5 days with one of my favorite people on earth, Meg. I'll totally post pictures (if I can find away to pack my camera b/c I'm a habitual overpacker, but it will be a priority).

So, this weeks update will include no pictures, but it WILL update you on my progress:

Week Two: I began integrating more lean meats and continued to workout.

Starting Weight: 187.3
Weight Loss this week: 1 ish lbs.
Current weight: 182

Total weight lost 5.3 lbs

I'll be back next Tuesday with a happy heart and rested soul...and some pictures to share!

Have a great weekend!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Week One of Bathing Suit Challenge!


It's been one week in the Bathing Suit Challenge and I am doing great. Each week I will expose a little bit more of my body and update you on my progress as I get ready to post the whole she-bang on June 23rd!

Week One: I began working out more regularly and eating better

Starting Weight: 187.3

Current weight 183.3

Total weight lost 4lbs
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, May 3, 2008


I am on on a detox diet.

THERE. I said it. I didn't want to, because I feel like I appear really spastic with my dieting habits....I even planned on keeping it a secret from my Mom (weight watchers queen) and everyone else around me on a daily basis. After thinking about how ridiculous that was, I changed my mind and have actually received a lot of support. IN fact, when I told Trevor Mr. Meat Eater Deluxe...he wanted to JOIN IN.
It's not extreme or radical in that I sustain life by drinking some crazy maple syrup and lemon juice concoction for weeks on end. It's extreme and radical because my body hasn't been without caffeine, sugar, meat, or massive amount of "naughty" carbohydrates in a looooooooooooooooooong time.
Here's the deal. I can eat only the following things:
Vegetables, fruit, 2c. brown rice, 1c. oatmeal
chickpeas, beans, lentils, tofu, 2c. skim milk, 12 oz low fat yogurt (no fruit on the bottom), 4 egg whites, 1 1/2 slice low fat cheese, 1 veggie burger,
8oz herbal tea, 2tbsp soy sauce, 2 tbsp teriyaki sauce, 2 tbsp olive oil, 1/4 c. nuts, herbs and spices, 1 tsp butter

NO POTATOES or AVOCADO (hard as hell to do)

The specific quantities are a maximum I can have daily. The items with no amounts I can have unlimited amounts of with in reason, keeping in mind my degree of fullness.
At first I thought I would starve, but then I busted out my Moosewood Restaurant cookbook that is 100% vegetarian, and I started making some awesome recipes. Tonight I making Goi Ga Vietnamese Salad..brown rice, tons of yummy veggies, peanuts, and dressing made with Thai fish sauce (not soy-but close enough).

In the last week I have lost 4 lbs. I have not once felt hungry ..well, except for Thursday night when I met 5 girlfriends at an Italian restaurant for dinner. Now THAT was HARD. I ate a small salad..not intentionally...when it came, it was small. All the ladies had a hard time not laughing at me as I sat with my piddly little plate while they joyfully mowed down HUGE bowls of delicious cheesy pasta, wine, and ice cream for dessert! AHHH.

Back to the 4lbs. yeah, I've lost that much in the last week and I have a week to go. I am loving the food I am cooking each night, and I feel more engaged in what I eat. Everything is so much more thoughtfully prepared and flavorful. When I eat, I am eating really good stuff that fills me up and tastes soooo good, while my co-workers sit and eat their 57th Lean Cuisine meal for the week.

I'm glad I confessed to you. I hate keeping secrets from my blog pals.

I'll leave you with the BEST morning treat recipe:

Apple Muesli
from Esurientes' Blog, who got it from Jill Dupleix, 'New Food'

2c. rolled oats (soaked over night in 1c. of water)
1/2c. Greek style plain yogurt
2 tbsp. honey (which I didn't use this time around due to the diet)
1 tbsp. wheat germ
1 mashed banana
Mix it all together and shred a green apple on top.

Welcome to the world of Tasty-ness!