Saturday, February 26, 2011

Public Service Announcement

The flu is rampant, people! It's true. I just spent four days at the hospital taking care of patients with flu and other respiratory illnesses. And being exposed to it, not only from patients but from other nurses who came to work with it. Yummy. I had a headache all day yesterday and was afraid that I was also coming down with the dreaded virus. But never fear, the minute I left the building and started my weekend, the headache was gone. For the love of all that is good, please don't get the flu. Please. I like sick people. They keep me employed. But the flu is just a horrible gross thing that is being spread like wild fire. So to help you out, here are a few  things you can do to prevent it.

1. Get a flu shot. Hopefully you already did that. But in case you didn't, you can still go get one. The flu shot prevents most strains of the flu but not all. One of the docs told me yesterday that Influenza B is not covered in the shot this year. For the record, I haven't seen or heard of anyone coming down with B. I would happily give you a flu shot, but they don't let me keep a stash of them in my fridge. Sorry.

2. Wash your hands. All the time. After you pee, before you eat, after you've wandered around in public. And take some alcohol hand sanitizer and stick it in your purse and your car. Hand hygiene is the main way to prevent the flu! (I sound like one of those signs that we have everywhere at the hospital, sorry.)

3. Take Vitamin C. I've been doing 1000mg per day. Try 500mg in the morning and 500mg at night. If you take a massive dose, it won't even absorb, you will just pee it all out. I think the max recommended dose per day is 2000mg. And take Vitamin D. I've been doing 2000mg of that. And a multi vitamin. Just do it. We eat the adult gummy kind. They are delish. (And now I sound like my mom. I swore as a child that when I grew up and made my own decisions, I would never EVER take vitamins. Laugh mom and dad, laugh at me.)

4. Eat some fruits and veggies. In place of greasy fast food and processed junk. Your body can fight off bacteria and viruses better if you nourish it properly. (And this week I'm pretty sure I ate fast food at least 5 times this week. Gross.) Nourishing your body properly also includes sleeping at least 7 hours per night. Do it.

5. Drink tea with honey and lemon, which are natural antiviral/antibiotics. It helps colds, sore throats, the flu, ect. And it just tastes good. At least I think so.

6. If you know that you have been exposed to the flu, ask your doctor for some Tamiflu before you have any symptoms. You can take it prophylacticly (to prevent the flu). I know because I asked a doc yesterday. If you start having symptoms (headache, fever, sore throat, runny nose, general achyness), you have 48 hours to start taking Tamiflu or else it won't really do anything. (Tamiflu=an antiviral.)

7. Don't go to work if you have the flu. Don't go anywhere if you have the flu. Stay home, drink lots of water, sleep, and get well.

Ok, that's all I've got. I hope you are having a beautiful, flu free weekend! Spring is just around the corner!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Snowboards+shooting=bff birthday weekend

Caleb turned the magical age of 23 yesterday! And to celebrate, his bff Mat Lewis came to town. That's right. BFF. Best friend foreva.

We decided to go to North Carolina and do a little snowboarding/skiing on Saturday. It was 60 degrees here in Kingsport. And yes, I realize that makes perfect sense. So we loaded up on some cupcakes, brought our HP on cd, and hit the road.
It's gonna be a good day.

As we worked our way up the mountain, we noted that there was no snow. That's right. No snow. But never fear, there was plenty of fake snow awaiting us on the slopes.
The slopes from afar. With lots of brown trees for fun.

It was like 40-45 degrees out on the mountain, which turns out to be perfection for snowboarding. And we enjoyed ourselves. Even though the boys made me go on a black slope. And I thought I was going to die on the way down. But I didn't. 

On Sunday, we went out shooting. Because that is the ultimate birthday if you are guy. Living in Tennessee. I managed to look super awkward holding and shooting guns. Enjoy.
Good thing I have a cute scarf on to distract you.

The guys managed to look super awesome shooting guns. Check it out.
Lucky for us (and Mat) his flight got cancelled today so he gets to stay another night! I'm pretty sure Caleb hopes he would stay forever...

One last bff photo...
Love it.

Happy birthday to my hubby! 

I am super stoked to work the next four days. Fast forward to the paycheck. Have a great week!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Our new ride, a day trip, and some Valentine's goodness

We decided to take Caleb's new Acura RDX on a little day trip over the weekend. We live about an hour from North Carolina and had yet to enter the state. So on Saturday after sleeping till 10:30 and then getting a little Zaxby's chicken goodness, we set out for Asheville, NC. It was a beautiful day and taking the turbo charged engine on the winding mountain highway was pretty fun.

We stopped at a scenic overlook. Because that's the kind of girl I am.
My man loves his new ride.

I think it would be much more scenic in the summer. When everything is green as opposed to brown. 
Mmm check out those lovely brown trees.

Being Kansas folk, we do appreciate some quality mountains. No matter what color they are.
Love that.

Turns out downtown Asheville is a straight (ok curvy) shot down the highway that goes right through Kingsport. And it was beautiful. Super artsy, hippie, lots of cute boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, and bars. Reminded us a little of Lawrence. Especially with all the musicians with their cases open.

There was a cool shopping center called the Grove Arcade. I loved all the windows. And we found a game store with hundreds of board games. Including a whole shelf of Settlers of Catan add ons. Cha-ching!
There were also many coffee shops with lots of chocolates. Yum.

So we had a fun day exploring in Asheville. Which is an hour and half drive. Or an hour if you speed. It was just nice to get out of Tennessee for a day!

On Sunday, I made some s'mores brownies for Caleb to take to work on Valentine's Day. They were easy and SO good! I highly recommend them. Make these for the people you love.
I had to sample them.
I think they were gone by 9am Monday morning. Because s'mores brownies are part of a balanced breakfast. We both spent Valentine's Day at work. My boss decorated the break room and we had lots of candy and cupcakes and treats. It was a crazy busy day so I didn't really sit down. But I did manage to go in and re-energize with sugar throughout the day. Why eat lunch when you can eat cupcakes and conversation hearts? Caleb and I made pasta carbonara for dinner (Caleb knows it as "bacon pasta") which is delish but not for those watching their waistline. But that's what Valentine's day is all about, right? I'll post that recipe sometime soon. Because it is awesome.

And just for fun, here is a picture of us on our first Valentine's Day together. Caleb came to visit me at KU. He brought flowers, a bracelet, and chocolate. We went to dinner at Paisano's. And then made out. Just being honest.
Valentine's Day 2006. Hot.
I hope your Valentine's Day was wonderful! Valentine's Day means winter is almost over. Yay!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Greek yogurt challenge

*I just added a ton of love songs to this blog's playlist...and quite a wide if you love love songs, just keep this page up for awhile...

In case you were unaware, I love Greek yogurt. You probably know this about me if you work with me. Since I eat it every day at work and you've probably made fun of me for it. I love Greek yogurt because it has tons of protein (way more than regular yogurt) so it helps me get through the 12 hour work day. I also like the texture a lot more than regular yogurt, its much thicker and I can pretend like it's custard aka dessert aka delicious. It has the same good bacteria that help out your digestive system AND many brands of Greek yogurt have all natural ingredients (read: no high fructose corn syrup). Also, just fyi, you can sub Greek yogurt for sour cream and other fats and oils in many of your favorite recipes. I sound like an advertisement. But really, I just love Greek yogurt. *it is much more expensive than regular yogurt. but that is the only downside. promise.

So when my local Target stopped carrying my favorite Greek yogurt a few weeks ago, I was forced to look at Food City for my fix. They had many more brands than Target did (although fewer flavors) so I decided to branch out from my normal brand and try a few new ones. My one rule: it had to be fat free. Some brands of Greek yogurt actually have over 20 grams of fat per serving. That is like a freaking Big Mac. And if I'm going to eat that much fat, it's going to be in Big Mac form.

Greek bliss.

So here is the breakdown.

1. Yoplait's Greek yogurt, strawberry flavor. It contains 160 calories, 0 grams of fat, 20 grams of sugar, and 14 grams of protein. It also has the most ingredients of any of the three Greek yogurts I tried, with no mention of live and active cultures. I think this was more "greek style" yogurt, since it wasn't as thick and creamy as I'm used to. The taste was fake strawberry and gross. Ok, basically I didn't like it. At all. And had the most calories.

2. Dannon's Greek yogurt, blueberry flavor. This one contains 120 calories, 0 grams of fat, 16 grams of sugar, and 12 grams of protein. It has real blueberries (yay!), real sugar, and live and active cultures. It also contains "less than 1%" of some ingredients that sound like preservatives. But it was yummy and significantly more flavorful and thick than the Yoplait. 

3. Chobani Greek yogurt, honey flavor. It has 150 calories, 0 grams of fat, 20 grams of sugar, and 16 grams of protein. It has seven ingredients: milk, honey, and 5 live and active cultures. Chobani is my normal brand of yogurt and most of the other flavors have less calories and sugar. (Best flavors: vanilla and raspberry) It is thick, creamy, and delicious. I can eat this for breakfast around 8 or 9 and not be hungry until lunch at 1:30 or 2. Nothing artificial. It does have a lot of sugar so don't eat it if you are anti sugar. The plain Chobani has 100 calories, 7 grams of sugar, and 18 grams of protein. Score!

Winner: Chobani. Fortunately, Target restocked it's supply this week and all was well with my world. Here is a coupon link so you can go get some for yourself. And be so so happy.

In case you were wondering, my man eats Yoplait Go-gurt tubes. They come in flavors such as "Strawberry Splash" and "Berry Blue Blast." He obviously does not share my love for the Greek.

Ok this whole post was just a procrastination ploy from cleaning. So I'm going to go do that now. And drive around the new car because Caleb got a ride to work this morning so that I could drive it around for the day. Now that is love people.

Happy Friday! Have a wonderful weekend! And go eat some Greek yogurt. Your life will be better.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Office Space

Happy Thursday morning! I have finished another long stretch of work and emerged without too many battle scars.  The fabulous work weekend (said with heavy sarcasm) really did me in. I had Monday off to recover and then fought through the last two days. They weren't bad, just really really busy. No one died or almost died or cussed me out or fired me from being their nurse. (It was a bad weekend.) I could tell some people were cussing me in their head but they didn't do it out loud, so its all ok. (The housekeeper hates me for many reasons.)  But now I have four glorious days off and I woke up bright and early at 7am to get things started off right.

We have been super lucky here in East TN to escape all the snow that the rest of the country has had. We did wake up to some today. I have yet to go out in it, maybe the first time ever that is has snowed and I was not scheduled to work. Good thing my man has his new ride.
I know, super lame compared to the rest of the country.

I celebrated the beginning of my holiday with the latest episode of Glee and a yummy breakfast of eggs with bacon, spinach, and onions. And coffee, duh.
Don't judge the other things on my coffee table.

So my State of the House project for February is the guest bedroom. I will start that today, I promise. But Caleb begged me to make the office area my project before the guest bedroom. I do have to agree that it was really really bad. Since we live in a loft, there's not really set rooms other than the bedrooms and bathroom. So this is our little carved out office.
Yeah, gross. That bookshelf is literally about to collapse. 

So I bought a new bookshelf organizer thing, moved things around, and cleared out the clutter. The hub built the organizer for me on Sunday while I was at work. Also, we have multiple printers that need smashing. See if you can find them all in the pictures. It's like Where's Waldo, Office Space style.
So much better.

Love this cube organizer. Yeah I still need to organize the third cube down on the left. The Gatorade bottle holds change. Maybe I should get a cooler change holder.

Our office space is KU themed. The pictures are straight even though they don't look like it.

So the office space is cleaner and more organized and the husband is happier. The rest of the house has suffered from all the working. *Sigh.* I am still trying to keep things clean and not messy. I am starting on the guest bedroom today. As soon as I get back from a nice Target trip.

Pictures of the new car to soon as I see it in the day light. Have a great Thursday!

Friday, February 4, 2011

The week in list form...and a cute pic

Ahh its Friday night, Caleb is jamming with his buddies from work, I'm making soup to take to work on Sunday, and I've just finished my first day of this three day stretch. I haven't had much time to do anything this week let alone blog about it. My house is not very clean. That is the truth. I could clean now instead of blogging. But I'm not.

Nine things that happened this past week:
1. I went to the gym. Once.
2. We went to a new church with our friends Angela and David. We liked it, but we miss Westside.
3. I fulfilled my January goals for cleaning.
4. We watched Despicable Me. Twice.
5. I cooked. Once.
6. I worked. Every single day. Some days were classes. But no days were free.
7. I got an awesome paycheck. Because of all the working.
8. Target stopped carrying my favorite yogurt. I hope its because of all the blizzards up north and they just didn't get the shipment in.
9. Caleb got a new CAR! Its a 2008 Acura RDX. He is crazy excited. He wanted to go on a road trip to Kansas next week and then remembered we have to work. To pay for the new car. Ha. But he is super stoked! I bet everyone he works with is happy because now he will stop talking about looking for a new car. I am also happy about this.

And finally, here is a super cute pic of my adorable nephew George that my mother in law sent to me.
Rock Chalk!
Do you not just want to kiss that face? I would like to say for the record, that I am not getting anytime in the near future. Someone put a baby in my arms today at work and told me I should have one. No. No thank you. But I will cuddle your child and love him and kiss him and spoil him. And then give him back to you.

Ok I'm off to bed. To rest up for a weekend of work. Happy Weekend! Lemon out.