If I haven’t convinced you of the wonders of this clipboard, perhaps this video will:
If I haven’t convinced you of the wonders of this clipboard, perhaps this video will:
If I haven’t convinced you of the wonders of this clipboard, perhaps this video will:
Fact: February is National Cancer Prevention Month!
Maybe you were like me and thought that cancer was part random and part genetic. Or maybe you knew that things like diet, weight, and exercise could actually affect your chances of having cancer?
Either way, knowledge is power, and this book is POWERFUL.
I was emailed a couple months ago to see if I’d be interested in reading 100 Perks of Having Cancer plus 100 Health Tips For Surviving it and then blogging about it. Reviewing this book hasn’t been easy. It’s hard to summarize 400+ pages of valuable information! So I decided to take a leaf out of the authors’ book and to create a numbered list of why people, with or without cancer, should read it.
So here ya go.
5 Reasons to Read 100 Perks of Having Cancer plus 100 Health Tips For Surviving it! (even if you don’t have the Big C)
First, let me tell you a little bit about the authors, Florence and Susan. What a team they make! Flo is a registered psychologist and Susan is a registered nurse. They both went through their own breast cancer experiences and then collaborated to create this book. Flo shares 100 perks of having cancer (inspired by her blog) and Susan includes 100 health tips for surviving it (more on her blog). Their sense of humor makes this book easy and enjoyable to read. Plus, there are some great illustrations and personal photos in here. After reading this book, I sort of feel connected to them!
Aren’t they amazing? So, here’s why you should read the book:
1. It inspires you.
Like, in the way those Olympic stories inspire you. Everyone loves to see a person overcome obstacles and succeed in life. It talks about living in the moment, making the most of your life, and building relationships. Susan and Flo don’t even beat around the bush. They dive right into the gritty details, like health tip #2, the effects of estrogen on the lady parts, or health tip #28, all about having normal bodily functions. The book talks about the power of prayer and of a strong support group. Really, it tells you how to get through challenges in life and that’s something that anyone, with or without cancer, can appreciate.
2. It makes you count your blessings.
Some of things I realized I’m grateful for while reading this book:
-I don’t have cancer (knocking on wood as I type this).
-I’m learning ways I can prevent cancer and I didn’t have to do any of the research!
-I have eyebrows. Therefore, I can communicate by giving ‘the look.’
-I don’t have to schedule myself around ‘good days’ and ‘bad days.’
-I don’t smoke and I’m thankful for that (fact: on average, it takes a smoker 3 ties to quit).
-I’m thankful for humor and how it helps me cope with my job and with life.
-I don’t have medical bills to pay.
-I’m already really good a sleeping, and apparently poor sleeping habits are linked to a lot of really bad things (high blood pressure, obesity, depression/anxiety, diabetes, impaired immunity, and even cancer).
3. It makes you more aware.
Reading this book was similar to my experience watching Food, Inc. or Super Size Me. It was almost shocking how many things have links to cancer and are seen as ‘normal’ in society. Examples include health tip #60 warns against “added sugar” (sad), #66 talks about the problem with eating fast food (also sad), and then #24 says I have to ditch my microwave popcorn (triple sad)! I relate to Flo in the fact that I feel like I lead a healthy-ish lifestyle. But everything is backed up with research that specifically states why cancer loves and thrives on those things and it suddenly makes it a lot less appetizing. At the same time, you learn about healthy fats, nuts, vitamins, seeds, fruits, veggies… the list goes on and on. There are beauty tips (skin care and hair care) and exercise tips (how to make the most of your walking and how dancing counts as working out).
The book also made me aware that goldfish keeping is actually a hobby. So I had to Google it. And apparently, back in September 2013, here in Boise, Idaho, we held the 20th annual Koi and Goldfish Show. I didn’t even know such a thing existed! So, naturally, I’m making plans to go for 2014.
If you get the chance to read this book, don’t skip Perk #57 Handsome Doctors and Health Tip #57 When Good Doctors Go Bad. It basically gives you some really good insider tips on how to choose a medical provider, which is huge!
4. It gives you a bunch of great recipes
The kitchen is my happy place, so I got really excited when some of Susan’s 100 health tips were some fantastic recipes to try! There’s vegan chocolate beetroot cupcakes, kale chips, pumpkin soup, a version of quinoa sloppy joes, granola, and dandelion salad.
The book also gives a list of cancer fighting foods: garlic, berries, avocado, Chile peppers, broccoli, raw carrots, mushrooms, red grapes, and olive oil. There are PAGES devoted to olive oil! Specifically, extra-virgin organic olive oil. I found my bottle at Costco and made this carrot ginger soup in the picture below: (I did stray from the recipe and added a dash of hot sauce. So good!)
This book also introduced me to Clara, a sweet little lady who shares recipes from her childhood during the depression on YouTube (she passed away in 2013 at age 98). She basically has me convinced I need to try Dandelion salad this spring. I think I can convince husband to eat it, he’s been on a ‘wilderness survival’ kick recently.
5. You will (probably) live longer if you read and heed this book.
Here’s what I mean by #5: this book will help you make changes in your life that can boost immunity, make your body healthy and strong, and build up relationships with others. It helps you focus on having a healthy body and soul. For example, health tip #18 (one of my favorites) is all about the benefits you receive personally from helping others. There is research that looks at the effects of kind acts on health and well-being and they find that being good is good for you! Focusing on helping someone else takes your mind off your own problems and distracts you from your own stress-provoking thoughts. You release endorphins, reduce feelings of despair and isolation by providing hope to others, and it improves symptoms of depression (page 80). How cool is that? So now I’ve added another book to read to my list: The Healthing Power of Doing Good: The Health and Spiritual Benefits of Helping Others, by Allan Luks and Peggy Payne.
What I’m MOST excited about is using what I’ve learned and sharing it with my patients. I work in a Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit and a handful of our patients come in with lung cancer and need tumor resections or whole lobes of their lungs taken out. Some of them go on to do radiation or chemo, others simply need the surgery. Either way, they’re all going through the cancer scare and need some extra support.
While I doubt I’ll get them to find the perks of cancer while they’re dealing with a fresh incision and a chest tube sticking out of their side, I DO think they’ll be receptive to learning all they can about how to avoid going through that experience again!
Valentine’s day is coming!
So I’m going to tell you about something that I love: my new snow boots from Hotter Shoes.
For those of you who live in the USA (which is most of my readers out there), there’s a good chance you haven’t heard of Hotter Shoes before today.
Don’t feel bad. I hadn’t heard of them either.
But then! One fateful day in December, I was contacted by the company about trying some of their shoes! They’re based in the UK and have only been in the US market for a couple of years. They excel in creating comfortable shoes that people (like me) can wear while working on their feet all day long.
I was able to choose 2 pairs, one for work and one for pleasure.
THIS post is about my pleasure boots.
They are accurately named “Snow Boots.” These are their grey ones in size 8. I normally wear a 7.5 and after reading the reviews, I went with an 8. Many of the reviews on their website are quite negative and talk about sizing issues, but these feel great to me. I’m able to wear them with normal to medium thick socks and there’s no problem- not too narrow or tight.
These boots have been a lifesaver. Before this pair, all I had were some rain boots with zero insulation and a pair of brown boots with zero tread on the sole. These boots are fashionable AND practical! I’ve been able to wear them with the last couple snow falls we’ve had here in Idaho and I’ve felt a lot safer shoveling the driveway and getting around. Overall, these are wonderful winter boots.
Now, if you like the idea of your pockets snapping closed, then you don’t have to do a thing when you buy this top!
And really, the whole modification took less than 10 minutes (if you sew, I bet you can do it faster), so don’t let that deter you from considering this top! PLUS, when looking at the Cherokees Flexibles scrubs on uniformedscrubs.com, the top has different pockets than mine! They’re more of an open concept with one side snap tab on the right. If you search Cherokee Pro Flexibles online, other websites have the snap closure pocket style. (See what another nurse did with her snap tab pockets! brilliant.)
So. My plan is to swap this with my old navy top. I’ve worn it so much, it’s starting to fray at the neckline where I attach my name badge.
**Disclaimer- This scrubs top was provided by Uniformed Scrubs in exchange for an honest review of the product.**
I’m so glad I’m not in nursing school anymore where it was required to wear plain white shoes.
So. On to the review.
Overall, we really like them! It only took me about 2 shifts to feel totally comfortable in them, so very little break-in time. They have the same arch support of the traditional clog but the wide surface of your average athletic shoe. No ankle rolling for us! They feel lighter on the feet than the clogs do. They are slip resistant (it felt like suction cups the first time I walked on a slick surface) so that should come in handy as the parking lot starts to ice over this winter.
The one downside is the fact that they aren’t easily sanitized. These sneakers are made of fabric and you can’t use sanitizing wipes on them like you can with the clogs. But they DO use a stain resistant leather that you just wipe with a damp cloth to clean.
The fact that they are multi-purpose and could be worn to work or for athletic purposes is pretty awesome. For example, I imagine these might be pretty comfortable to walk around in while visiting Disneyland next year. It’ll be my first time going (Disney virgin?) and I’m excited!
Once again, Dansko, thank you for a stellar product!
What does a nurse, a pregnant lady, and a marathon runner all have in common?
You probably looked at the title of this post and guessed it, so YOU’RE RIGHT! They all can benefit from compression socks!
Here’s the story of how I discovered Nabee socks:
There I was, hanging out in the ICU (I normally work in the Cardiovascular ICU, but they floated me to the ICU that day) and I glance over to see another nurse wearing the cutest pink argyle socks.
Me: “Hey, I love your socks!”
Her: “Thanks! They’re actually compression socks! I was talking to Dr. (a vascular surgeon), and he suggested I get socks with a specific pressure, and I found these!”
Other nurse: “Aren’t they expensive? How much did you spend on yours?”
Her: “….well, I definitely spent some money, but these are actually cheaper than a lot of compression socks out there!”
So I go home and Google compression socks. It didn’t take long to figure out that there are a lot of ugly ones. Then the Nabee socks website appeared and after reading their business philosphy, “Nabee socks is dedicated to bringing pure, unadulterated awesomeness to your feet,” I was hooked.
I had been thinking about trying compression socks for a while now. I’m a nurse (you know that) so I’m on my feet most of the day. I had heard that they would help with leg pain and swelling, but they also prevent spider veins and varicose veins (I’ve been having problems with the spider variety for years now! I’m too young for that sort of thing!). Athletes wear them for shorter recovery time after exercising. Pregnant women wear them to promote blood circulation, help with swelling, and prevent varicose veins. Anyone who works on their feet all day could benefit from them.
Moving on with the story, I contacted Brian at Nabee Socks (Founder and President) about trying them out. Turns out, Brian is also a nurse! He works in the ICU in Washington, D.C. and started his own business! How impressive is that? This video pretty much explains the whole concept:
Here’s the BEST part.
They are having a Fall sale to make room for new inventory (new designs! yay!) so they are already cheaper, but Nabee Socks is offering a special coupon code for all of you readers!
Dansko has other shoes, you know.
Shoes anybody can wear.
Shoes that have the same quality and comfort of their medical ones, but made for wearing outside the hospital.
(Their variety of shoes is actually quite amazing.)
I knew they had ‘other’ shoes, but I hadn’t paid too much attention to them. I’ve been infatuated with their nursing clogs, after all. All that changed in July when I was asked to try out a pair from one of their 3 new Fall collections: Ventura, Monaco, and Havana. Suddenly, I was envisioning myself wearing their shoes to a pumpkin patch or crunching through leaves. So I chose something that I could wear with jeans or a dress, something I could pedal a bicycle with, something that would look great with all my sweaters…
Take a look at the soles… these shoes were made for Fall.
Dansko is offering to give away a pair of shoes to one of you dear readers!
You can choose a pair from one of their 3 new fall collections:
1) Ventura: everyday casual wear, gorgeous leather, 2” heel. If you want a pair of cute shoes to wear out this fall, check these out!
2) Monaco (Pearl not available): similar to the classic clog dansko, but with a little more heel.
3) Havana (Faith not available): Dansko meets wedge. Best part: all of these can be dressed up or down. The Franka shoes I’m wearing are part of this collection!
The winner will be chosen next Friday, so make sure to enter before then, ok?
In fact, go ahead and enter right now.
ER. Grey’s Anatomy. Scrubs. House. Private Practice. Nurse Jackie. General Hospital. MASH. Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman. And we all know there’s many, many more…
Paige and I wanna know what your take is on all these shows! Do you have a guilty pleasure? Do you think they’re ridiculously unrealistic? We’ll blog about it and link up on September 25, last Wednesday of the month! (ps. We do a nursing themed link up every month. Let me know if you have any theme suggestions!)
After nearly 5 years of wearing scrubs, it could be said that I have some favorites.
Here on the blog, I’ve talked about Dansko scrubs, Cherokee scrubs, and my purple Dickies scrub top, to name a few. I was recently given the opportunity from Medical Scrubs Collection to try out a brand of scrubs that was completely new to me. Or maybe you’ve heard of Smitten? Before this, I hadn’t.
Smitten scrubs have the these amazing deep pockets and great fabric, with a grey’s anatomy type of softness to it. And the details are what I love about these scrubs. The pink stitching and logo add the perfect amount of feminine touch without being too girly.
I know a lot of my nursing friends out there are required to wear a certain color for the unit they work in. My hospital hasn’t converted over to that (yet) but this would be a great option if you want a little pop of color while still complying with your dress code. Just saying.
I think it’s safe to say that I can add Smitten to the list of favorites.
Check out Medical Scrubs Collection for end of the season deals and reduced prices on awesome scrubs!
And if you’re looking for other brands, this website has them all! I actually have my eye on this top (in all its star treky glory) and this one (those notches on the neckline are a nice detail I haven’t seen before)!
I wanted to share something pretty cool with you guys today!
A while ago, my brother and brother-in-law joined forces and started their own online business!
Let’s call them… Adam and Steven. because that’s their names.
See, Adam and Steven launched a website called Story Playground which allows people to make their own virtual stories with their own pictures, their own words, and even use their own voice! This video will give you the general idea:
In my family, Story Playground has been used to create fun, lighthearted stories, announce pregnancies, record original family songs, and even as a gift!
So, Father’s Day is coming up. Imagine how excited your Dad might be to get an email that says you made a story just for him… he clicks the link and he’s able to see your pictures and hear your voice. Maybe your voice will be telling him all your favorite childhood memories. Or maybe your voice will be telling him all the things you love about him. Or you could record other people’s voices saying hi to your Dad. The possibilities are endless.
Story Playground has a spring sale going on! There are two parts:
1) New users that sign up during the month of May will receive enough dragon gold credit to make their first book free! The credit can be redeemed at any time.
2) For the month of May, one purchase per customer is eligible for the half-off deal. Just enter the promo code P-Spring50 at checkout.
**I realize May is almost over, but you can also like them on Facebook to stay updated on all their promotions!**
Click here for some tutorial videos of how to use the website (how to create a book, how to purchase dragon gold, etc.).
And here’s something EVEN MORE SPECIAL!
THE FIRST TEN PEOPLE who log into Story Playground and sign up for a free account AND leave a comment saying you did so, with your email address, those ten people will receive a virtual copy of the book I created, “So, You Think You Know Me” (a little random-facts-about-me thing).
Get to it! And let me know what you think!
This ends the brief intermission of nurses week. I’m hoping to get caught up on all my posts today!
Here we go.
As Nurses Week was approaching, a Dansko rep contacted me about reviewing one of their new shoes for Spring. I had three options to pick from: professional flower power, sedona elise, or professional art palette. Now, I think we all know of my print/pattern aversion when it comes to scrubs and how I only get solid colors… but there was something about these shoes and I made an exception!
And now for the GIVEAWAY part!
You can enter to win a matching pair of Danskos! Enter now through next Friday and NEXT Saturday, I’ll announce a winner!
[You don’t have to be a nurse to enter. Open to anyone!]
a Rafflecopter giveaway