Sunday, August 22, 2010

There's No Place Like Home!

Dorothy said it best when she clicked her ruby red slippers together, "There's No Place Like Home". That statement couldn't more more honest in my opinion! I am home from the hospital and I missed this place (and my pets) dearly while I was away! I actually arrived back home yesterday, but this is the first time that I've really had a chance to post. I had heart surgery last Monday and spent a few days in the hospital. After I left the hospital, I stayed with Jack's sweet grandparents at their home for a few days while I recovered. I will blog about my surgery experience soon (the good and the bad). Overall, I'm still in a little pain and sore (I have four incision sites), but I think I will have a much better quality of life in no time! It is also becomming a lot easier for me to move around now, so I think I'm healing up nicely. I already have color comming back to my skin now too! It's nice to have rosy cheeks again instead of looking a sickly shade of bluish/white all of the time! On another positive note, I'm down to 1, yes 1 pill for my heart now!! Woohoo!

I go for my post-op checkup on the 31st. In the mean time, I'm just going to take it easy and enjoy spending time at home with my furbabies. The doctor told me that it will take about a month for my incision sites to heal up and around 3 months for the tissue of my heart to heal. I will be taking it easy for a few weeks until I start school again (the next session for my class starts in Oct.). It will take several months of healing for the scar tissue to form in my heart before the doctor will know if the procedure worked, but I'm praying that will be my last surgery for a long time and that this will have erradicated the need for a mitral valve repair (next potential surgery if this one fails..but we're going to be optomistic and look on the bright side and hope it worked!)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Leisurely Literature!

I am having heart surgery on Monday. I am NOT thrilled about that little detail, but I am hopeful that I will get a better quality of life back after I make a full recovery. Since I don't want to be glued to a television the entire time I recover (and I won't be able to do too much else) I decided it was high time that I FINALLY indulge a little bit and get some of the books that I've had on my "book wishlist" for an eternity now! Typically I just rent books from the libary, but the last few times I've gone, they didn't have a single one on my list, so I figured it was time to pay Barnes & Noble a visit! (For those interested, Amazon and have an awesome selection of books at really low prices too!)

For well over a year and a half I have been consumed with school and clinicals. EVERY book I read was a medical book. Every spare second was devoted to memorization, studying, &  pretty much living in those medical books. Since I am on a break from school now until my heart surgery is over and I recover, I thought it was time to read something a little more pleasurable!
Today I took a fun little trip to Barnes & Noble and picked up some of the books I've been dying to read! Today's list includes:

"Isaac's Storm"-Erik Larson
"The Time of My Life"- Patrick Swayze and Lisa Niemi
"Free To a Good Home" - Eve Marie Mont
"Sh*t My Dad Says" - Justin Halpern
"Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India, & Indonesia" - Elizabeth Gilbert
"Small Miracles of the Holocaust"- Halberstam/Leventhal
"A Dog's Purpose"- W. Bruce Cameron
"Australian Shepherds: A Complete Pet Owner's Manual" - Coile

-I plan to write a little review on each one. Hopefully they will all be great! I have a much longer list than those 8 books, however I thought I would start with those for now. Typically my list would include a Shakespeare play, something by Rev. T.D. Jakes, and a Michael Crichton book, but I decided to break away from my normal mold and go for something else this time! The next time I go to get books, my list will likely include:
"Where There Is Love, There Is God : A Path to Closer Union with God and Greater Love for Others"- Mother Teresa

"I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell" - Tucker Max

"Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea" &  "My Horizontal Life : A Collection of One-Night Stands" - Chelsea Handler

"The Help"- Katherine Sockett

"Falling Apart in One Piece"- Stacy Morrison

and several more!

Monday, August 9, 2010


Let me preface this post by saying that I am out of almost everything in my kitchen right now! Milk, bread, you name it, I need to make a trip to the grocery store today! Since I cook almost everything I eat, I needed to come up with something for breakfast today. Necessity is truly the mother of creativity! Pretty much the only thing that I had left in my refridgerator today was a small carton of eggs. I was starving and feeling a little inspired, so I thought I would try a new spin on one of my favorites.

I used 4 egg whites (I detest the taste of egg yolk in a plain omlet or fried eggs. I only use an entire egg when I'm cooking a dish that requires whole eggs.) Once I seperated the yolk/white into different bowls,  I added a pinch of EVOO (also had a tiny bit in the skillet), tinsy pinch of garlic salt, parsley flakes, dill weed, black peppercorn, white sea salt, and a small sprinkle of monzorella cheese. (I never really measure things out, I always just eyeball it.) I whisked everything in the bowl and then added it to the skillet and let some magic run its course! The result was amazing!! I normally make my eggs with a pinch of honey, fat free lactose free milk, sea salt, black peppercorn, garlic, nutmeg, & butter. My normal recipe is more of a warm, filling dish...what I made today was a very delicious, savory dish (it would be great for brunch or even with some shredded baked chicken for a dinner omlet)

Here are a few pictures from this morning's breakfast! (Sorry the pictues aren't the best, I didn't think to take any until after I had already cut up everything on my plate! It tasted wonderful though!!)

Even though I don't like egg yolk personally, I'm not a fan of wasting food. So, I always cook a little plain omlet for Ranger with what I have left aside. (If you want to do the same for your dog, just be sure to leave out any garlic, onlin, milk, cheese, salt, etc & make sure that you thoroughly cook any eggs before feeding them to your pet. I normally just make his plain. If you're not sure what is safe to feed your pet, do your research and talk to your vet.  The ASPCA has a good link on their website too. ) Ranger only gets "human food" in his doggy bowl to discourage begging. ( "People food" can be very good for dogs as long as it's fed in moderation, your pet does not have an allergies/medical conditions that would contridict supplementing a reglar diet, and you do your research first: Some of Rangers favorites include:  baked boneless/skinless chicken, brown rice, plain yogurt, carrots, cooked eggs, etc)  I cut down his normal dry food portion according to whatever else I give him to keep his diet balanced.

Ranger enjoying his breakfast after a hard morning of training drills!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Mini Update: Haircut, Birthdays,...

I've been absent from blogging for the last week (had a few issues with my heart), so here's a mini-update. On the 28th of July I got about 5 inches of my hair chopped off. It's been way too hot in Memphis to keep it as long as it was! I normally donate to Pantene's Beautiful Length's program, so the next haircut I get I will probably donate then. My hairdresser Brian and I have our own little tradition of taking pictures each time I visit, so here are the pictures from that (my hair was still a little damp):

Ranger decided to check out my new haircut too...

Thursday, the 29 of July was my 25 birthday, "niece" Cassie's 16th birthday, and my kitty Tommy's 9th birthday) The 29th is apparently a popular day for birthdays! Here are a few pictures from the festivities that day:

Jack, Me, & Ranger on my 25th birthday. Jack suprised me with two true white bettas (I collect bettas, so they are an incredably rare find!). He took me to lunch at Sakura since he had to work that night. After he got off of work, he showed up at my door with a dozen roses and a little icecream birthday cake.

White Bettas (before they went into their bigger tanks)

Me, Renae, and my momma at my 25th birthday dinner at O'Charley's

Cassie & Taylor enjoying their snocones! We had a little girls afternoon and made a trip to Jerry's Snocones to celebrate mine & Cassie's birthday! :) Cassie is one of my niece Taylor's best friends and my honoary "niece". We all 3 had a blast and enjoyed our WhiteWeddingCake Supreme's!
Me & Tommy on our Birthdays! He's 9 years old now!