Monday, November 30, 2009

Yesterday was a very good last day with my preceptor on days.

I'm super sad about going to nights. I'm not going to lie. I am most worried about when I will eat, exercise, and see Mirza.

We had some down-time (amazingly) and decorated the unit for the holidays. My preceptor and I put up the tree, and then I helped decorate it with another nurse while my preceptor wrapped empty boxes, like dignacare's, to put under the tree:

We took these with her iPhone. Awesome!

Friday, November 27, 2009


Today was so fun because we went to Busch Gardens and had a great day!

And then, the day was pretty much ruined because of the disgusting selfishness of miserable American assholes.

I'm waiting my turn to get gas. I was not directly behind the guy because I think it is rude to do that and rush people, so I was directly behind him, but with my blinker one. I was close enough to where it was definitely obvious about my intentions to get gas. I waited 10 minutes and then this suv pulls up directly next to me and takes my spot. I saw her look over at me, and then look the other way. I pulled closer to her and said, "Excuse me, I've been waiting..." She said, TOO BAD!! why aren't you in line!?!

I said, I've had my blinker on, I've been waiting!
She rolls her eyes and just looks ahead. I said, 'Really?! you're going to be like's a fucking, you're a fucking bitch.." Then Mirza said, "yeah that's the American way, right? Just take whatever you want!" And she says, "I just call it like it is!!" This whole time I am calling her a bitch and miserable person and disgusting. Mirza tells her that he hopes god and jesus save her soul (we're atheist).

Then the guy leaves and she goes to take the spot and I pull up to block her (I'm crazy). I came within inches of hitting her. The whole time I am like NO!!! Then she pulls ahead of me because someone else left ahead of us.

@#$%#$%#$^@#$%^$%^ I'm so disgusted!! Why wouldn't she just say, "oh i'm sorry, I didn't realize it" and let me in. obviously i was waiting, she saw, and did not care.
When I drove away, she was getting gas, and I pulled up to her and told her, "you should be disgusted with yourself. I hope you never get sick and have to come to the ICU, YOU STUPID BITCH!!" I know, totally cheesy, but it was just how I felt. She laughed like the wicked witch as we drove away and flicked me off.

When we drove down the street, I was so angry that it literally made me cry. Is this how humans treat one another?! I think it is this society. It makes me want to not go out at all and just lock myself away. I'm disturbed and TRULY SICKENED!!!

I also want to add that this was not a young girl. This was a woman in her 50's!!

To not have an entire negative post, here is my Max:

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I started my morning at around 7 with a piece of peanut butter toast and yogurt.

A few hours, later, I made a smoothie with banana, ice, and Amazing Grass mango infusion.

And then I went for a nice half hour walk at Lake Seminole park!
I'm spending the holidays with Mirza's family. I'm not eating anything until the feast!!

Let the coma begin...

Monday, November 23, 2009

feelin' saucy!

I feel so good today! I don't know what it is, but I hope this feeling lasts into the week:)

I woke up and organized/cleaned, which always makes me feel..cleansed? I decided yesterday that today I want to make a tomato sauce! I've been craving a nice, homemade sauce for awhile now, but I rarely make one since I know it could never compare to my mom's!! She told me over the phone what she does, so I am going to mimic it the best I can. I'm also adding ground turkey breast to mine. She usually does the whole ground beef and italian sausage deal with amazing meatballs *drool* and she cooks it ALL. DAY. Growing up, I have found memories of the weekends when her sauces would start early in the morning and simmer all day long. The smell would permeate throughout the whole house. We'd always have good bread, too. I miss those days.

As much as I want to follow a vegetarian diet, I find that I don't feel well when I do. I just feel better at times when I have animal products. Truthfully, this makes me feel guilty and sad, but I just do not like feeling like crap! Honestly, I'm all about listening to what my body needs. Sometimes it wants all fruits, veggies, and grains and rebels against any sort of animals, even dairy! And then there are times when I know I just need it.
Does anyone else feel this way? I feel guilty, I guess, since I read a lot of blogs related to vegetarianism and veganism, but everyone is different, right?

Lately, I've been on the search for a good, daily moisturizer. I was using Alba organics prior, but it is gone and I'm ready for something new. I use Yes To Carrots cream at night and I like that, so I thought I'd give it a try. I found a Yes to Cucumnbers facial kit on sale at Target. It includes a headband (haha), a facial cleansing gel, a facial hydrating lotion, and soothing eye gel.

After a bunch of errands this afternoon, I came home, put away all the food, and made a delicious lunch consisting of: whole wheat pita with hummus, baked until hot and then topped with organic spinach, fresh basil from my porch (love!!), organic tomato slices, and (the best) kalamata olives. I love making these little pizzas! On the side, I had a fruit salad from Publix.
I'm ready to start cooking my sauce!

Max says, "hi!"

Totally random, but does anyone else get extreme joy out of purchasing stupid things, like hand soap, sponges, etc? I don't know, I'm a freak!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Raspberry Stethoscope!

Just to let everyone know, I have purchased my own domain and the link to this site should be working in a few days. The new link is:

(note: the old link will re-direct you automatically, but just a heads-up)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Code blue, Nurse Nicole in a funk!

I've been terrible about blogging. Lately, I haven't been feeling well, mostly just feeling like I look like crap and I not enjoying life, that kind of thing! I just feel like I need a new style. Maybe once I get some extra money, I will go out shopping. All I ever wear is jeans (practically the same ones I have had for 5 years), plain solid shirts/tanks, and flip flops. I am 24, but I look like I am 16-17 at times! But I also feel like I have no sense of style, that even when I do try to go out shopping, it is too overwhelming and I just give up and keep purchasing the same crap over and over!

I also saw that I have gained 5lbs! I know it is only a number, and I honestly wonder where this 5 lbs is because I think my stomach is still pretty flat and muscular, so I am going to pretend I gained 5 lbs of muscle, but I doubt it. I think I need to join this whole Back on track month. Not for weight or anything, but just for general eating habits, exercise, and mental health. Honestly though, I am just hard on myself. I eat healthier than anyone I know in real life!

Luckily, I had two good days at work, so I hope it took me out of my funk. Only the next 3 days off will tell...

Last week I established a new primary. I am not sick and will probably not need to see her until another check-up, but I like to know there is a doctor (close-by) that I can go to if I DO get sick. I also had my teeth cleaned and my eyes checked. I am quite regular with my every 6 months teeth cleaning. We never really went to the dentist growing up, so now that I have dental insurance, I take full advantage of it! Also, I never had my eyes checked before and since I pay for it every month, I figured why not? And my eyes are in good condition, so there you go.
Today I am going to a dermatologist for a general exam and a few questions, too.

I have about 2 more weeks on days with my awesome preceptor and then I am being shipped to nights. My preceptor is incredibly amazing at what she does. She's been a nurse for 18 years and I think 16 or 17 were spent in this same unit. Let's just say she knows what she is doing and you can honestly see that she cares about her patients. She is continually telling patients (or families, since patients usually are not aware) that they are her boss. And you totally believe her too. And she is not afraid to tell you if you're missing something or what you need to know, but she also praises. I love her! I know I am getting the best training for ICU with her because she does not miss a beat.

Let's recap:
Saturday:: Let's just say, I did NOT want to go to work. It was Saturday! argh! However, the day did turn out well. But, it was insanely busy. On the other side of the unit, there was a new transfer from the floor and I remember Rose* saying, "Room 2 will code today," and I thought, alrighty then. I was doing well with my two patients, developing a routine, or trying anyway, when Rose comes into the room and says, "Stop what you're doing," and I'm thinking to myself, "oh shit, what did I do wrong?" and then she calmly says, "Dr. SoandSo is going to put a central line in room 2 and I want you to assist. I will take over your assignment while you're gone, don't panic!" haha. I seriously thought I did something wrong by the way she walked into the room. I went to room 2 and "helped," and I say it lightly because my preceptor gathered all of the supplies (with me following) and then told me what to do. This patient was SICK. No pressure.

About 10 minutes later, "Code Blue, ICU, Code Blue ICU," and we knew it was room 2. We ran to the other side and sure enough, everyone was already at the bedside setting up and doing compressions. PEA. The other nurses decided I should do the recording, score! I recorded while another nurse pulled meds and calmly explained how to fill out the form. This code was effortless. Everyone worked together as a team, there was not one ounce of panic or even real urgency. The nurses in this unit are pros. After about 3 amps of epi, 40 of vasopresson, some bicarb, and d50 we got a pulse with the doppler! Amazing, we "brought him back." But truthfully, this was guy was not "back." He would die, and we knew it.

I left the room and 10 minutes later, again, "Code Blue, ICU!" I went back and started a new sheet to record. However, this effort would obviously be futile. We coded the patient for about 7 minutes and then a family member wanted to come in and when he/she saw the horrendous scene (seeing your loved one being worked on so vigorously is not pretty) he/she immediately cried and told us to stop. We had planned to stop anyway since the patient's heart was not responding, but I thought it was good for the family to see that YES, we were trying everything we could and there were many people helping.
And so, the patient died.

*name changed

I wanted to mention that "my" unit won the Beacon Award!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Part 2: CSA week 1

So, I got busy and lazy (all at once?) and never posted part 2 of my CSA Week 1! Did everyone enjoy seeing the awesome farm? I love just thinking about going there next week for my second batch. I have a half-share, so I only go every other week, which is perfect since it is just me (and Mirza when he eats dinner here, which is a lot).

What was in this week's share? As mentioned in the previous posts, the farmers said this first harvest may be more of a "tasting" because of flooding, but there were still lot of greens to be had!

Pamela, the "farmer's wife" gave us a print out that listed what we received (if anyone wants a more specific name of each veggie, just comment):


Radish- Easter egg and D'Avignon (haven't tried them yet, kind of scared of radishes, need recipe ideas!)

Choi-Joi Choi, Tatsoi, Komatsuna (totally new to me..)

Greens: Arugula, Red Mustard (holy spicy!)

Eggplant- Orient Express

Herbs-Greek oregano, rosemary, garlic chives, basil (still in the pot for this one)

I got everyone (like they're human) home and prepared for STORAGE!

Before I left, I printed out this guide for vegetable storage and placed the pages in plastic protection and into a binder:

I know, I'm totally a geek, but it came in handy for figuring out how to best store everything.

Some photos of the loot:

The herbs smelt aaaamazing, hence the goofy face:

I really loved the eggplant, he was so cute.

Yep, I need help.

Next post on how the heck I am using all of these delicious plants!!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

CSA Week 1: Part 1

Around noon yesterday, I made my way over to the farm to pick up my share...

This is the driveway/walk to the farm. Along the fence are the cutest little wooden plaques painted with different sayings, etc. I wish I would have took a picture. Next time.

We could pick up our shares from 12-4pm. And since I arrived pretty much at 12, there were not that many people. I met the farmer's wife, Pamela, and she was very welcoming. She had us sign in and then gave us a paper with the list of vegetables we'd receive that day. I found this extremely helpful because it has the name of the veggie and an explanation of how it looks, how it tastes, and how it grows, etc. They kept kind of apologizing for the harvest this week, how it will be much more in the future (there were floodings, see previous post), but to me, it was just the perfect amount! No complaints from me, I was excited.

After I packed all of my veggies into the bag, I went for a walk and wandered around, snapping a few photos:

I also took a video on my way back. It is a bit shaky and you might not be able to hear me, but...

More pictures:

Stay tuned later for more pictures of the awesome vegetables and what I received!!!!

Beginning of a beautiful friendship...

Today is like Christmas for me.

For months (maybe even years?), I have been waiting anxiously...dreaming about it...imagining all of the deliciousness, the freshness, the GREEN-NESS!!

Yes, today marks the first pick up day of my CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)!!!

I received this email during the week:

Welcome to the 2009-10 CSA season!
Warm greetings to our old friends and new friends of the farm.

Pick up days/times will remain on Wed 3-6 OR Sat 12-4

Our season will begin on Saturday Nov 7th for our full share members and those in the Group “A” . (Designated member name A-L)

Group “B” (designated member name M-Z) will begin the following week on Wednesday Nov 11 or Sat Nov 14.

Any questions, give us a call or stop by. The schedule should be updated on the website and reflect the continuing for 30 weeks until the end of May. For those of you who have been members you know we will continue to harvest into June as long as the weather allows. We are very informal and use the A/B system to keep the harvest stable over the life of the garden. We are not concerned about necessary changes you may need to make as long as we are made aware. Thanks for your support and cooperation.

What’s new at the farm 11/2/09… perhaps the fall season at the farm will be a “tasting” rather than a bountiful “harvest” due to flooding in the fields….

Hello everyone, I have been missing you and hoping you have had a wonderful summer. Many of you have been coming to the farm so you are aware of the work that has been done and how we are re-doing about six weeks of work in the field due to the wet planting season. Following two seasons of record drought and record freeze- we find ourselves in the midst of record-breaking rainfall during the planting season (10 days-12”) and record heat! As we enter our third CSA growing season – we learn the lesson of farming yet again - Rule # 1. It’s all about the weather. No amount of worry or fret is going to change the outcome. Farming will humble you and teach you patience! So what’s a farmer to do?

Of course, there’s - Rule #2. Don’t get too attached to your vegetables! For those of you who have stopped by the farm - it comes as no surprise that many of the seedlings you saw under water in the field did not survive…the poor broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, collards…all swallowed up by the sand and silt. Most of the seeds that were in sharp, clean rows ended up scattered in pools of swirling rainwater, while we couldn’t step foot in the field for fear of sinking in a foot! So what’s a farmer to do?

Most of you know our dear friend Berk Gumus, farm director at the Bern’s Steakhouse Farm in Tampa - you know how this is meant when he says - If it isn’t working – plow it under and begin again. That is oh so difficult to do when you have nurtured those little seedlings from a tiny seed to this point …you want them to succeed, you want them to grow – you want to EAT THEM!!! Our lesson - If something isn’t working in your life, you plow it under and begin anew. Seeds and plants are the same way…So what’s a farmer to do?

Well…first things first - we couldn’t bring ourselves to COMPLETELY till the gardens under; especially when I was so smug as to think I had begun this season on such a positive note when planting had began in JULY! But reality and Berk’s voice - forced us to be brutal…plow the field yet again, add a little compost and replant the seed we had left. Fortunately, when the rain didn’t stop for 10 days and the Farmer had recorded over 12” here at the farm - we saw the handwriting on the wall. When much of the garden looked like a rice patty…we began a list of all crops we needed to replace and began seeding everything AGAIN in the greenhouse.

That’s what a farmer has to do…and that quick action may have served us well if we can get a cold snap in the next few days and a few willing hands to help replant the fields. This week – hundreds of seedlings are ready to venture out of the greenhouse to the field. See list below of what’s to come…

Did you see our “dibbler” (measuring stick) when you visited? The dibbler marks the spacing of transplants in the field. No experience necessary to become a master dibbler! All kidding aside, many of you have asked about volunteering at the farm. Contact our volunteer coordinator Denise - and she will be able to give you specific information about volunteer training most every Sat 10-11 So e-mail Denise at Once you are comfortable with our system, join me from 9-12 any morning except Tuesday or Sunday to help with farm chores or harvest. If the weather cools to the 60’s in the evening - the mornings will be heaven on earth, perhaps almost “sweater” weather.

What’s ready to re-plant – some of which could be ready to harvest in 4-5 weeks…

Kale Red Russian
Kale – Lacinato
Kale – Green Curley
Kale – Redbor

What’s already in the ground – reseeded and growing daily!

Diakon radish
Green beans
Red mustard
Swiss Chard
Asian greens
Sweet cherry tomatoes

Now for the good/better news! The 37 year old Florida Herb Society will be using our 2nd greenhouse for their test garden. They should be around most weekends and you can visit their website for information about their meetings.

So much to tell you about
If you are interested in good, clean, fair food - check them out. A special membership promotion for a limited time - $60 fee is waived – join for any amount!! We are organizing an effort to build a chapter here in the Tampa Bay area. Right now Sarasota is the closest chapter. We had our first meeting at the farm last Sunday and will be having an event at 4:00 - Sunday Nov 22 - A potluck and a showing of “FRESH-The MOVIE.” Details will be posted. Also bring your own table service and a chair! A small fee will be charged by the SLOW FOOD Chapter.

With all that said, we look forward to seeing you at the farm. The harvest may be more of a tasting than a true bounty until the new planting matures…but rest assured it is a LONG season and the vegetables will grow and we will all share a good time and great food. We add Rule #3 – It’s all about the veggies…and herbs and flowers,…and friends. See you soon. If you are partnering with another family, please pass along this e-mail message. I am still trying to streamline this message distribution. Perhaps someone with lots of time to type and who knows Constant Contact software will appear at the farm....HA! So much farming to do, little time to type!!

The Farmer's Wife


I bought a half share, but will be picking up my harvest today since I work on the other days. They are quite flexible at Gateway, which is wonderful. Earlier in the year, my friend from nursing school let me pick up his share of a CSA in Tampa while he was out of town. I know it may sound weird, but when I got in my car with all of those vegetables, I almost wanted to cry. Just to think that these edible foods were in the soil just hours before, growing, taking in light and nourishment...and were now with me, ready to eat...really just blew my mind. I think more people need to see this and feel it. Food does not just come from the grocery store. It GROWS! I know that is obvious, but I often wonder if children (or even some adults) truly understand this notion. Whenever I bite into a fruit or vegetable, I am just amazed at the entire process. I think to myself, "This was on a tree, growing, and now I am eating it!!" Does anyone else think that is amazing?!! Maybe I am just quaked out of my mind?

Either way, I hope to take pictures while I pick up my harvest. I know they mentioned that the first "harvest" may be more of a "tasting" due to the weather conditions over the summer, but that is okay because it is a long season!!

"My vegetable love should grow
Vaster than empires, and more slow..."

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Overview of the 31-Day Yoga Challenge

The month of October just flew by, almost as if it didn't even happen. I guess that's what happens when you're focused on each and every day. I would have thought the opposite, personally. However, I loved October.

During the challenge, I felt more alive. Going inward and taking an active focus on yourself everyday can do wonders for the mind. I also felt like I was more level-headed and had less mood swings, as if i were better able to handle emotions and stress and not (over)react.

I calculated from my posts that I did almost exactly half of the challenge at home, which is a huge surprise for me. At the beginning of this challenge, I was skeptical of home practice. I thought I wouldn't "be able to do it." Trust me, there is absolutely nothing like going to a studio and practicing yoga with a teacher and even a group of other people (yogini's), however, this month gave me a new appreciation for the home practice. When you're at home, you're completely focused on yourself. You may not know what is coming next, but you dictate it all, allowing you to completely focus on yourself.

Physically, I have noticed my bends are deeper and my flexibility has increased. I felt like I was pretty balanced before hand, so I did not see much of a change there. I also want to mention that I did not lift weights during the entire month because I wanted to see if I could subjectively see a change in my muscle tone. I was almost irrationally scared that I would lose some muscle mass in my biceps, but I did not find that to be the case. In fact, my muscles are almost longer and leaner and still the same size, to me anyway.

One of the reasons I wanted to do this challenge was to decide whether or not I would want to go through a Yoga Teacher Training program. And I've found the challenge completely gave me a boost and sense of motivation --I know for sure I want to go through training. The month was also about positivity and motivation. I now feel like money is not the only thing holding me back. I CAN earn the money and I WILL go through training. It's just a matter of patience, right?

The most difficult part of the challenge? Doing yoga on my days of work! As you all know, I work 12 hour shifts and they are completely exhausting at times. I know now that I should probably just stick to meditation after work, and not actual asana or any yoga movement, except for relaxation poses right before bed. I also learned how important it is to not force yourself to do anything! You may finish, but you will not get any benefit out of it, whatsoever.

What's next for me and yoga? Well, I'm not too sure. I am obviously going to keep practicing (duh) and even incorporating at-home practice. I am thinking that once I get my tax return money, I will use it to enroll in a teacher training program.
I just want to continue to incorporate yoga into every aspect of my life...

Monday, November 2, 2009

Day 31 (2 days later)

I know, I am so behind on the posting of the FINAL day of the 31-Day Yoga Challenge. Saturday marked the finale and I went to a one hour class at my gym. The coolest part was that a sub was in and she put on a yoga relaxation cd that I own and listen to quite frequently, so I felt right at home

Stay tuned for an overview of the past month and how I'm feeling...