bulletin board

One of the ‘dreaded’ projects we complete as seniors in the dietetics program is a bulletin board.  In the past, all the students were in charge of a bulletin board in our building on campus.  This year–and perhaps due our relocaiton because of the renovation on our building–some of us are decorating boards at some of the community sites to which we’re assigned.

I taught a nutrition education class to teenagers at the Seneca Street after-school program (THAT didn’t go well…let’s just say it would be an understatement to say that some of them are poorly behaved), and so that is where I did my board.

I taught my section of the class on choosing healthier options at their local convenience store, where they stop between school and program.  (Holy smokes, was that culture shock.  I went on a ‘field trip’ to see what healthier options I could find…I wasn’t in Kansas anymore, let me just tell you that.)

Anyway, despite all the junk food lining the shelves, I was able to find ‘better’ options.  Thus, I made my board:



I loved it!  Don’t you??

I bought all the items, forced Andrew to eat the junk–he didn’t mind–and prepared cards to list why the better options were healthier.  I really do believe you can find better options just about anywhere, you just have to look.




Hopefully the teens will heed some of my advice!

head start

As part of my community nutrition rotation this semester, I had to teach a class to three-year-olds at a Head Start program in Buffalo. Another student and I decided on a ‘build a healthy salad’ theme. So, last night, I prepped plates with green crepe paper for lettuce:


The kids were going to color different fruits and veggies and then glue then to their ‘salads.’ We set each table with supplies:



The class went really well! The kids enjoyed coloring and especially the gluing. I was surprised at how little they could verbalize about salads (or anything, really), but they’re also shy and still adjusting to going to school. All in all–success!

school lunch

I’m between community rotations this afternoon (Head Start was this morning and a church-run after-school program is later), so I decided to spend the break at school getting things done.

I’ve already picked up supplies for the bulletin board I have to decorate, hit the gym and showered and am now sitting down to a little lunch before more school work.


Half a peach on cottage cheese, one Wasa cracker, tuna mixed with avocado, sweet/hot pickles and Dijon on a salad with apple, spinach and red pepper. Washing it down with seltzer!

a list (finally)

Thought you’d never hear from me again, didn’t you?

(I was beginning to think that myself!)

Well, I’m back, and hopefully with a little more regularity.  My last post was August 7, and that’s just shameful.  (Especially since the title is ‘drink last night.’  THAT’S WHAT’S BEEN ON MY HOME PAGE FOR MORE THAN A MONTH?!?!  Fantastic.)

Since then, I’ve started back to school, and I’ve learned that SOMETHING has to drop off my plate when it gets busy around here, and it always seems to be the blog.  And vacuuming.  The hair is out of control, people.

In an effort to jumpstart this thing, here’s a quick list:

1. School started at the end of August and this is week 4.  WEEK FOUR!  Where is September going??  Where did August go?  WHERE DID MY SUMMER GO???  Seriously–fastest one yet.  I blame the internship.

2.  The big project this summer was our garage floor.  Andrew did one of those cool epoxy ones with the flecks sprinkled all over.  It’s awesome.  It was a TON of work–mostly on his part.  Not quite sure it was necessary, but man, does it look sweet.  Pictures coming soon.

3.  Speaking of pictures.  Another reason my blogging is so belated is due to the dreaded ‘space upgrade.’ I hem and haw each time I use up my space and have to buy more…  Sure, I could delete a bunch of photos from years ago, but, on the one hand the thought of that makes me SO SAD, and the time it would take to sort through them is not worth saving $20.

4.  I put our electric blanket on the bed last night.  It’s the middle of September.  How is this possible??

5.  I’m going to Trader Joe’s with a friend tonight.  SO UNBELIEVABLY EXCITED.

6.  I’m loving my school schedule this semester.  All 8 a.m. classes, but I go immediately to the gym after and workout, shower and eat lunch in the car on the way home.  The efficiency of it all makes me so happy.  One day I stay longer on campus, and two days a week I’m in rotations off-campus.  Right now I’m at various places in the community (a.k.a. Buffalo) such as Head Start, WIC and after-school programs.  Next month I’ll be back in the hospitals all day.

7.  I have LOTS of draft posts, just sitting in the queue.  Projects, a summer visitor and FOOD. Stay tuned.

8.  Pray for me, people.  I can probably count the number of nights I’ve gotten MORE than 6 hours of sleep so far this year on one hand.  Seriously.  I really struggle with sleep and I NEED TO GET MORE.  Not a lot more–just another hour or so.  I got a whopping 3 last night.  Between the animals waking/keeping me up, afternoon caffeine intake, the to-do list and stress, my sleep pattern is all messed up.

9.  I got invited to join the swim team up at school after someone saw me doing laps the other day.  Talk about an ego boost!  I still got it :)

10.  My new favorite thing is the sweet potato.  I love them baked with cinnamon, topped with almond butter or mixed with cottage cheese and avocado.  I throw them in smoothies and salads.  I pretty much have a half each day.  Give it a try!

Happy Monday–it’s good to be back!

new dress!

Andrew never ceases to amaze me :)

When he goes out of town for work, I always ask him to bring me back a present of some sort, ether it’s a souvenir or some sort or maybe just a treat he picked up.  For example, when he flew through Chicago last time, he brought back a giant bag of fresh kettle corn from the airport.  YUM.

Anyway, his last trip was to Boston, but he was unable to find my size in some items he liked at the airport before his flight back.  He’d found a neat hoodie from some Boston-based store there, but no mediums.  Drat.

So, he came home with this:



A winner, for sure!

There is, however, a story behind this dress.

About a month ago, we were at the mall and popped into Anthropologie for some coasters (random, I know), and I saw this dress.  I was mesmerized.  Despite its’ almost-$200 price tag, I tried it on anyway.  I thought it looked great.  I felt like a million bucks.  However, Andrew thought it looked too big (it was a medium), and we put it back on the hanger.

Fast forward a month to Andrew’s return from Boston.  We’re sitting on the porch and he hands me a box.  It’s the dress, in a size SMALL, and I sneaked a peek at the price tag–ON SALE.  (Thank goodness.)  It fit like a glove and I wore it that night (or maybe it was the next time) on our dinner date to Rick’s.

I told him he was lucky to have a back-up plan–the mall is on the way back from the Buffalo airport–since his Boston present feel through.  He insists that’s not how it happened, but, whatever. I’m right.  And I got a beautiful dress that makes me think of how wonderful my husband is every time I look at it in my closet.

Emily wuz here

Oh my heavens, this post is SO OLD.  As in, it’s been sitting in the queue waiting for me to actually WRITE IT for like, more than a month.  School, I tell yah.

So Emily and I planned a ‘girls’ weekend’ in August, and in the interest of saving money, we opted to stay in and Emily made the trip here.  She arrived on a Thursday night and within hours we were at the gym for spin class! Like our headbands?  Get more info here.


My summer internship forced me to work out in the afternoons, and after it was over, I stuck with my T/Th 4:30 spin class.  I just love Sarah!  I’ve been able to make it about once a week so far with this community nutrition rotation I’m in right now, but starting next week, the rotation changes.  Oh well :(

After spin, we hooked up with Andrew and the three of us went to Arriba for Mexican food.  It is one of Emily’s favorites.

Friday morning, Emily joined me at the gym for Pi-Yo and then kickboxing–we were beat!  But, so fun to have her join me for my favorite classes!

After showers and snacks, Emily set up her massage table right in the front room to give me a MASSAGE!  I’m a lucky girl, I tell you.  Emily is like the ‘brain-surgeon’ of medical massage, and it was amazing how quickly my shoulders and back felt better.  In fact, with school having started (stress, book bag, gym bag, not sleeping well, etc…) up again, I’m due for another. If only she lived here…



After the massage and assessing my ‘plant situation,’ we headed to a local nursery and then Home Depot to get supplies.  The project: re-pot some of my plants and create some new ‘arrangements’ with succulents.  (Best idea ever, Emily–succulents are amazing!)



We spent the afternoon covered in dirt and playing musical pots with the plants.  A couple needed bigger pots, one needed a new pot and all my succulents had to go into the empty pots.  Emily is such a good plant-teacher.  She is like the ‘Yoda’ of plants for me.  Whenever I’m in her presence, I want to say something ridiculous like, ‘teach me, o wise one.’  I don’t even like Star Wars that much!







I’m pretty sure we did some porch-sitting after that strenuous potting session…but I can’t remember.

That night, we stayed in for dinner: beet/coconut/ginger soup, simple salad and sweet potato/kale pizza.  And wine.  I love having someone for whom I can cook these fancy-schmancy, uber-healthy, strange-ingredient meals.  Sure, Andrew will eat kale and sweet potato and things, but he wouldn’t love the soup, nor would he want the goat cheese on the pizza…it’s all just a waste on him.  (That’s OK, he has other strengths.)






For dessert, I had saved two slices of the blueberry lemon birthday cake I made myself this May, knowing I wanted Emily to try it.  At the time I put them in the freezer we hadn’t made our trip plans yet, but I just knew she’d enjoy that piece.  So glad I did!  (And, it was shockingly good for having been frozen for three months!)

Weekend project #2: Operation Clean-Out Holly’s Closet!

Earlier in the summer, I was experiencing great frustration with my closet.  You know, the ‘I-have-nothing-to-wear-but-I-have-a-million-things-all-over-the-place’ kind of mess.  I needed help!  ‘Editing’ your closet is just like editing a paper…you always need ‘fresh eyes.’  Emily begged me to wait until her visit, so I did.

We systematically pulled and dragged and dumped whole drawers of clothes all over the place and sorted through each one.  I was shocked at how much I was getting rid of…more than an entire basket!  It felt so good.



On Saturday, Emily and I drove to Hunter’s Creek to take a mid-morning hike in the woods.  In our matching boots. (Birthday gifts to each other this year! I mean, come on, they’re TEAL.  And super comfy–HIGHLY recommend.)


We had one of our best hikes yet–filled with lots of great exercise, talking, tears and hugs–and I love that it’s kind of our ‘tradition’ to go on a hike/walk each time we’re together.


And then we get coffee.  Obviously, a stop at Taste was in order.

Saturday afternoon was a bit anti-climactic: I had to take some photos for the newspaper, so I did that before our coffee and we also stopped at the Made in America store for treats for Emily to bring home to Dan.



That night, Emily cooked dinner for me!


It was SO FUN to sit, sipping wine, while she worked in the kitchen.  Such a treat.  Normally, I’m kinda OCD about being in the kitchen, but this time it was no problem.  (The wine probably helped.)

Salmon, cod, kale and yellow squash!


The next morning, we had our customary Charlie’s breakfast before Emily hit the road.  It is just the perfect place for a last hurrah before someone leaves.  We sat outside and it was gorgeous.



Emily, THANK YOU for your friendship and for your visit and I am SO SORRY this is so late!  I love you so much :)






Not really. But we did do something equally irresponsible and out of character.

We went out.  To Buffalo. On Allen Street.  After 9 p.m.  On Wednesday.  And for MUSIC, of all things.

Long story short: our neighbors–Buffalo hipsters turned Southtowns homeowners (and parents!)–were in a band (well, HE was in the band, she wasn’t) that happened to be having a ‘reunion’ show at a bar downtown.  I saw it on Facebook and felt strangely compelled to go.  No idea why.

The stars aligned–Andrew got caught up late at work, couldn’t start on the garage, we finished dinner in time–and off we went to Nietzsche’s on Allen Street.  Let’s just say we weren’t in Kansas anymore. (It’s not like we’ve never been to Allen Street, but it’s no Canalside, either.)

IMG_8100.JPGOur adventure began as we drove through the west side of Buffalo and I heard Andrew hit the door lock.  He’s so melodramatic like that.  Within a few blocks we were at our destination, and I had to surrender the car to Andrew to parallel park.  It’s not a strength of mine.

Nietzsche’s is just what you’d expect looking at it from the outside–dark, run-down, plastered with band stickers and posters with peeling wallpaper and exposed pipes.  Everyone inside was either hipster, hippie or covered in tattoos; Andrew and I stuck out like sore thumbs.

As usual, the show was running behind schedule, so we watched much of Handsome Jack’s bit while sipping our beer.  Apparently they are one of our neighbor’s–Tommy–favorite local bands and just got a record deal.  This means nothing to me, but it sounds nice.  I commented to Andrew that I thought they sounded like Lynyrd Skynyrd without the ‘country twang.’  I was pleased when Tommy said he agreed.

IMG_8096.JPGAs another band was setting up for their show, Andrew decided a piece of pizza sounded good, so we took a walk down Allen and found ‘Crust,’ a local place with slices available at 10:30 on a Wednesday night.  Gotta be in a city.

IMG_8099.JPGFinally, we headed back to the bar in time to see Tommy and his band, The Found, setting up for their set.  I remember seeing ‘I <3 The Found’ bumper stickers on our neighbors cars; I had no idea it was his actual band.  It turns out he sings and plays bass.  Who knew we had a rockstar next door?!  Check him out–he’s in the white shirt and cropped pants.



IMG_8104.JPGThey gathered the largest crowd and we had fun sitting and listening…until about midnight when we were more than exhausted.  (I’ve been going to bed before 11 these past couple weeks, and I definitely felt it last night.  And this morning.)

Speaking of the morning…  How long has it been since you had the remnants of a bar stamp on your hand the next day??



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