Tag Archives: Food

It’s Thanksgiving. Have you got your power tools?

22 Nov

Last night, my dad and I attempted to make a vegetable cow as a Thanksgiving centerpiece. Since the project was a collaborative effort, my dad was only responsible for making the cow’s body. However, that doesn’t mean that my dad put in any less effort on his part of the project. In fact, he put in more than most people would.

What you’ll need (for just the body):

  • One green pepper
  • One red pepper
  • Carrots
  • Styrofoam (to hold the two peppers together)
  • Power tools

Yes, I did say power tools. Once my dad got the main part of the cow’s body complete (which involved attaching the two peppers together with styrofoam), he attached the legs (carrots). Though the two back legs went straight into the styrofoam which made them stable, the front two legs weren’t quite so lucky since the styrofoam hadn’t reached that far. Therefore, my dad broke out the power tools.

 

I don’t think there is something that screams dedication and man power more than using power tools on vegetables. When you combine that with my dad’s career as a landscape architect, you’ve got an experiment that includes comments like: I got carrots on my drill bit and Are you giving that vegetable cow a hip replacement? Though the cow body is looking a little wobbly this morning, I can definitely say that last night was one of the most hilarious Thanksgiving memories I’ve ever had. It’s Thanksgiving. If you don’t have your power tools, you should jump on the bandwagon. You’re definitely missing out. 🙂

Can you smell the cinnamon?

21 Nov

There’s nothing quite like baking pumpkin pie with the best dad in the world. 🙂 I hope all of you enjoy your yummy food tomorrow. Though Thanksgiving is traditionally a day that we spend being thankful for what we have, I think it’s also important to realize that each one of us should take a small amount of time to ourselves. Whether it means taking a walk in the woods or reading for about 20 minutes, we all need a break from people sometimes in order to appreciate the moment, and to just be. 

How to prepare for a potential snow day (according to a college student).

29 Oct

There is a possibility of a decent amount of snow to hit Asheville tonight and into tomorrow, which means that my trip to the grocery store lasted 40 minutes when it should have just lasted 5. When there is even a slight mention of snow, people race to the nearest grocery store and stock up on food as if they are planning to be snowed it for a week. Though I find this funny, I feel the same inclination to get my butt to the store, even being the college student that I am.

How to prepare for a potential snow day (according to a college student):

  • Go buy cookie dough. It’s a necessity.
  • Make sure you have soup and/or ramen. Staying warm is important, obviously.
  • Make sure you have plenty of movies. Actually, why not just stop at RedBox when you’re on your way to the store. You can never have too many movies. Yes, there may be tons of movies in your closet, but you’ve seen each of those at least 20 times, right?
  • Have books at hand (if you’re a reader). No, you won’t be reading that Community Psychology chapter that’s not going to be covered for a week. You’re going to want FICTION, and lots of it!
  • Make sure you have cookie sheets at the ready. If there’s enough snow, you’re going to want to go enjoy those hills. Having to search for cookie sheets to slide down the hills on will just slow you down in the morning.
  • Make sure you have hot chocolate. There’s a potential for snow. Why not give yourself a warm treat?
  • Pull out the cute winter clothes that are still in the back of your closet. Even if the snow doesn’t accumulate, wearing those cute hats and gloves to go outside into the cold will make you smile.
  • Most importantly, be excited. Even if there isn’t a “snow day,” you can at least cross your fingers for a delay. You weren’t planning to go to that early morning class anyway, right?

Happy snow preparations, everyone! I’ve already got my sugar cookie dough ready to eat! There’s no shame in enjoying it early, right?

The good things about surgery.

24 Oct

What doctors don’t emphasize too much when it comes to surgery is that the actual surgery is the easy part. It’s the intense physical therapy afterwards that kills you. That being said, surgery is still a very scary procedure. Through all 3 of my intense surgeries, I was scared every time. Before each surgery, I had nightmares about waking up during surgery and seeing the doctors putting their hands inside my legs to straighten out my femurs. In my nightmares, I couldn’t speak. I remember screaming as loud as I could to try to alert the doctors that I was awake, but nothing worked. The doctors were too focused on straightening out my crooked femurs to pay attention to the traumatized girl on the operating table. However, thankfully, all of this was a dream. That doesn’t mean that it felt any less real though. I remember countless times when I woke up from this particular nightmare screaming and struggling to look at my legs to make sure they weren’t split open to expose my bones.

Despite the decent amount of fear and uncertainty that accompanied the intense surgeries I had, there were some pluses. First off, before each surgery, I got the autograph of the head surgeon. However, not in the sense that he signed a picture of himself and gave it to me. He signed my legs though. I later learned that he had to sign my legs so that he would be sure to do the correct procedure on the correct patient, and I definitely think that’s important. I didn’t want my femoral derotational osteotomy to be confused with a sex change. However, in my opinion, it’s more fun just to imagine the head surgeon wanting to give me his autograph.

Since the surgeries I had were incredibly intense, I was placed in the ICU following each operation. Though the groggy feeling and getting sick from anesthesia wasn’t fun at all, I had an epidural. Therefore, the pain wasn’t nearly as bad as it would be once the epidural was removed. Also, even though I slept a lot while I was in the ICU, when I was awake and finally ready for food (or when I could enjoy it without getting sick), I got to have as much ice cream and chicken noodle soup as a wanted. I even remember one particular time when I got my dad to go to the Chick-fil-A that was in another part of the hospital so that I could have some chicken nuggets and waffle fries. Though Chick-fil-A is normally incredibly yummy anyway, it was 100 times better after a huge operation. Trust me.

Most people don’t really think of presents when they think of surgery. However, they are connected, especially when you have your operations in a children’s hospital like I did. When I was younger (before all of my surgeries), I never quite understood why people received flowers and other gifts when they were in the hospital because, to me, the flowers didn’t really do much when they didn’t also include sunshine, birds, blue skies and everything else that’s connected with the outdoors. However, when I was in the hospital following my surgeries, the flowers were a comfort. Though it was hard to accept that I couldn’t just go sit outside and look up at the clouds, the flowers were the closest thing I had to being outside, and at that point, I’d take anything I could get. However, besides flowers, I also received tons of “Get Well Soon” cards and all sorts of presents from family, friends, friends of my family and pretty much anyone else who cared about me and wanted me to know that they were thinking of me. Though I don’t remember specific flowers or specific cards that I received, I do remember getting a stuffed animal hippo from my horseback riding teacher, Miss Mary. Though I ended up accumulating many stuffed animals throughout the time I spent at Shriner’s, my hippo is the one that is still very close to my heart since I got him after my very first surgery. He’s been with me through it all (including college), and I know that it will stay that way for quite a while.

Though I don’t recall having any incredibly good-looking doctors like the “doctors” on Grey’s Anatomy, I do remember Ben, one of the physical therapists at Shriner’s that I had a huge crush on. He had red hair, freckles and the cutest smile I’ve ever seen. Even though he wasn’t my physical therapist for an extended period of time, he did spend a few months with me while my regular physical therapist, Beth, was on maternity leave. Even now, it seemed close to perfect that part of my time with Ben coincided with Valentine’s Day. Even in the hospital when you’re feeling all kids of emotional and physical pain, it’s possible to have a crush. Trust me, I proved that. As you can imagine, when Ben gave me a heart-shaped box of chocolates on Valentine’s Day, I was over the moon. I think I may have even squealed a little bit when he handed me the box of chocolates. After all, it was one of the first times in my life that someone other than my dad was my valentine. Although, since I never had Ben as my valentine a second time, I think it was a good decision to stick to having my dad as my valentine from then on.

Happy birthday to me!

20 Aug

It’s my birthday! I’m officially 20 years old. 🙂 Despite having the first day of fall classes today and having my first day back at work at the campus bookstore, I’ve had a really great birthday. Here are some of the highlights of my day:

  • Getting coffee with my friend Seth before going to my first class. You’ve gotta have coffee to start any day off good, right?
  • Having my co-worker Anne make me a dessert she called “chocolate delight.” It was SO yummy!
  • Going out to eat Indian food with my dad and my best friend Malia. Definitely a successful birthday dinner since Indian food is my favorite.
  • Watching Grey’s Anatomy with Malia. I’ve missed our cuddle time. 🙂 I’m so glad that the semester has started back so we can resume watching movies and tv shows and reading in bed. Ha!
  • And finally, having a perfect and wonderful phone conversation with my best friend Skidmore.
  • And to top it all off, I’m ending the night by curling up in bed with my current read: Dark Places by Gillian Flynn (which is AMAZING so far!)

It’s been such a perfect birthday. 🙂

Apartment Living: The Very Beginning.

15 Aug

Well, after lots of unpacking and some tired muscles, I’m finally moved in to my apartment. Woohoo! Special thanks to my dad for moving every single one of my boxes from my car to my apartment and then helping me hang a few posters. I have no idea where I’d be without you, Dad.

Since I’m crazy tired and just had a very filling meal at Homegrown with my awesome roomie, Sarah, I’ll just settle for sharing some relaxing music with all of you. Actually, not really relaxing…more like my favorite song at the moment. Although, it can be relaxing if you’re a fan of slow country songs. Either way, enjoy!

More updates to come on apartment living tomorrow, so stay tuned! 🙂

When in Ireland, visit the Aran Islands.

15 Jul

I just got back from a lovely day at Inis Mor, the largest of the three Aran Islands. “Inis Mor” actually translates to “big island.” Even though I didn’t get to see the popular fort that many people visit when going to Inis Mor because the trek was quite steep and had lots of rocks, but it was still a great day exploring a cute little island. Since I had some time to myself while the rest of my group headed up to the fort, I snapped away with my camera (and got some great shots) and did some pleasure reading. And of course, my day was complete when I ended my time on the island with a double scoop of chocolate ice cream. No harm in that, right?

When in Ireland, embrace your Irishness.

27 Jun

Due to some wireless difficulties at my homestay family’s place yesterday, I was not able to post a blog update. I was just as heartbroken to not be able to update as all of you were when you didn’t here from me (Ha…okay, maybe you weren’t as heartbroken, but a girl can dream right?) Anyway, even though I don’t begin classes at the National University of Ireland at Galway today, today is still a full day of introductory classes.

In terms of how yesterday was, I said goodbye to my mom (which was sad in itself). However, I also met my roommate for the summer, Alex. We get along great, and she’s actually taking the same 2 classes as me this summer, so we’ve got the same schedule. Woo hoo. Anyway, since I was thrown into sharing a tiny apartment at the back of a b&b right off, it gave me a chance to meet someone right away (not including my API group that I’ve also spent some time with…though it hasn’t been much). But yay for making friends. It’s awesome! Alex and I also bonded by going to this crepe place called Mr. Waffle, which is just right down the straight from where we are staying. It was incredibly yummy. I got a Strawberry Ice Cream Supreme crepe, which is a crepe filled with strawberries, dark chocolate, and vanilla ice cream on the side. I felt like I had died and gone to heaven, and as Alex pointed out, it was as if we were in a “crepe coma,” and truthfully I can’t think of anything better. Anyway, yesterday was more of a relaxed day since most of the other people in my group were still getting over jet lag, but the evening concluding with dinner at this Italian restaurant called Milano’s which was super yummy. I had lasagna, which was amazing!

As I said, today is all about the introductory classes so that I can get a feel for the classes that I’ve signed up for and make any changes if I wish. I have signed up for Irish Literature and Film and Gaelic Culture, both of which are literature based classes. 4 straight weeks of Literature? Yes please! Maybe by the end of this summer I’ll be wondering once again why I’m not an English major as well as a Psychology major. Hmmm….yeah. Anyway, Alex and I just went to the Keynote Address, which was a welcome talk, or a “hey welcome to Galway. We’re happy you’re here,” kind of thing. At first it was exciting, but I think they could have made it just a tad shorter and we would have gotten the same effect. Long lectures….it’s the college life. However, one thing I did like was the mention of embracing your Irishness. When the speaker asked all of us in the lecture hall to raise our hands if we were part-Irish, the major of the lecture hall raised their hands, myself and some others excluded. However, the lecturer did point out at even those who didn’t obviously have Irish in their blood still should embrace their Irishness, whether that refers to culturally, socially, or just fully, completely, and without hesitation. I’m all for it, let me tell ya!

Goodbye Sunshine State.

24 May

Well, I’m back from Florida. It was a wonderful trip, and I loved that I got to spend a few days with my best friend in her home state. It was so much fun to meet her friends and hang out with her family and get to know them all better. Though I loved going out on the beach and soaking up as much Florida sun as possible, I’m a mountain girl at heart, and I’m happy to once again be among the Blue Ridge Mountains that I’m fortunate enough to call home.

I thought I’d post a few photos from the trip. Enjoy!

Day 1 of the Florida trip. At Disney for a boat ride and lunch.

Group shot at Disney.

Malia and I.

Before going out to dinner for my last night in Florida.

Check back tomorrow for Photo Friday where I’ll be sharing some of the more artsy shots from the trip!

Monday’s Musings!

21 May

It’s Monday again, and day 3 of my time in Florida. Saturday was spent driving 9 hours to Orlando, meeting Malia’s mom and sister at a hotel for dinner, and then staying with Malia’s friend, Chris, and his girlfriend, Meagan. Saturday Malia, Chris, Meagan, and I rented a boat and drove it around Walt Disney World to look at the Disney hotel. It was so much fun, and I loved meeting Malia’s friends! Yesterday we went to Malia’s dad’s house (aka I met more of Malia’s family/friends).

TODAY:

  • Drove to West Palm Beach (where Malia lives)!
  • Went out to lunch with Malia and some of her friends. We went to this place called Field of Greens, and I got a really amazing chicken salad sandwich!
  • Then we headed out on the beach. We weren’t there long, but it was definitely the perfect day for it with lots of sunshine!

Alright well Malia, her mom, her sister and I are about ready to eat dinner of spinach artichoke dip and salad, so I better go. But it’s been such a fun trip so far. I will be sad to see it end on Thursday morning, but I’m planning to soak up as much sun as I possibly can before I leave.