Browsing "Health"
May 21, 2013 - Health, My Story    No Comments

Band-Aids of Acknowledgement

Imagine you’re three years old.

Just a tyke, full of imagination and no limits in sight. Always exploring. Always moving. Always playing. Your sense of adventure is often much larger than your height. And sometimes that over-eagerness leads to bumps and bruises, scrapes and scuffles.

So you, adventurous three year old, fall down, scrape a knee and immediately do what? Run to mom with a tear-streaked face looking for a Band-Aid and a kiss to make it all better.

I’ve been around a three year old for the past week and I saw this happen. He went skipping down the driveway running toward an inviting, puffy dog (and owner) and in his haste, he tripped over his Crocs on the way ending up in quadruped.

Instant tears. 

That’s not surprising. We remember those moments, when fear or surprise or pain renders us unable to go on. And it’s Mom or Dad to the rescue. Mom scooped up the tearful guy, gingerly washed his knee and applied a Band-Aid and a kiss.

Instant healing.

He stopped crying, wiped his tears and snot-filled nose and was ready to play again. In fact, the only problem was that the Band-Aid wasn’t sufficiently sticky so he needed a few replacements throughout the day.

Why are Band-Aids and Kisses healing? I propose that it acknowledges the pain. It is a physical way to say, “I see you, buddy. I know you are hurting. I want to make it better.” I don’t think our needs are any different as adults. A friend of mine told her four year old that she had a headache and he promptly fixed her up!

BandAide Headache


Maybe this won’t fix a headache as this tyke tried for his mother, but it shows that he noticed her. We don’t want Angry Birds Band-Aids, but we want someone to sit with us, to see our pain, to acknowledge the hurting — no matter the source. That’s what I want. When I am in the midst of trial, I want a friend to say, “You’re not crazy! You’re allowed to be upset.” And, “I see you hurting.”

 Such acknowledgement is their verbal Band-Aid, and to me, it works every time. 

Apr 29, 2013 - Health    2 Comments

My Default Recipe

Three years ago I made a New Year’s resolution.

Resolved, to make one new recipe a month. Resolved, to get out of my boring dinner rut!

I discovered the joy of roasting vegetables last year and I haven’t turned back. It opened a whole new world to me beyond baking or steaming. Here is one my favorite recipes. It’s easy, healthy, and yummy. Do you need more convincing?!

Start with some veggies. You can roast pretty much anything, but here are my favorites:

Veggies Raw

I love sweet potatoes – but watch out and get a sharp knife or they’ll do you in! Green pepper, onion and carrots are my other go-to’s. I’m a big fan of the crinkle cut carrots. They roast well and seem to give it a dainty, fancy flair too!

Chop everything up in bite-sized pieces and place in an oven safe dish.

Veggies Prepped

These spices are your new best friends.


Drizzle with a few tablespoons of olive oil (EVOO for the Rachael Ray fans) and dust with garlic salt and cayenne pepper. WARNING: I didn’t at first realize how potent cayenne pepper was and my first batch of roasted veggies literally made me cry! I had to make a second full batch without any seasoning and mix the two together to make it tolerable. My advice for a tear-free dinner would be a 2:1 ratio of salt:pepper and go lightly… you can always add more later!

Stir well and put in the oven at 425 for about an hour.


Here’s the other key: turkey sausage. I like the veggies by themselves, but think a little more protein takes this dish from a side to a main course. I love Jimmy Dean’s turkey links. And they can be displayed alluringly as well.

JImmy Dean Sausage Links

I cook the links separately and add them at the end, stirring them together with the roasted veggies.

dinner completed

You get a full plate of veggies, a very filling meal, for only 8 points. But here’s the key ingredient to me. This dish tastes delicious with Chick-fil-A sauce. I’ve been known to go to CFA just to get more sauces! I save them up and ration them out for my roasted veggie meals for months.

Chick-Fil-A Sauce

I had it for dinner tonight! Delicious yet again. If you’re stuck in a rut, try something new. It has been huge for me as I’ve gone on this weight loss/health seeking journey to actually be excited about what I’m eating! When I look forward to dinner I’m less likely to snack throughout the day and I savor everything more.

What are you having for dinner? Are you excited about it??

Apr 26, 2013 - Health, My Story    7 Comments

Smart, Funny or Beautiful?

“Fluffy, big-boned, hefty, heavy-set, solid, thick, well-nourished, overweight, big girl.”

Everyone has their euphemisms for what’s really going on.

And I was tired of it.

I was tired of being unable to keep up physically. I was tired of being unable to shop in the misses department like my slender, petite friends. I was tired of spending so much effort to hide my stomach. I was tired of looking at my patients and wondering when I’d be the one having heart trouble or a stroke. I was tired of literally insulating myself from the world with a layer of fat.

Kelly's Fat Photo

So I did something about it.

I joined Weight Watchers eighteen months ago and started a new journey.

The first few weeks were rough. But not in the way I’d expected. Yes, I had to learn the rules, how to use eTools and how to calculate PointsPlus values. But that wasn’t the hard part. What was more challenging for me was learning to reopen a door I’d shut in my heart long ago. At some point in my life I’d decided that I was the smart one, the funny one, but that I would never be the beautiful one.

But now that is different. Now I am different.

Eighteen months later, I am nearly seventy pounds lighter. My blood pressure is within normal range. I have fewer headaches, aches and pains. I sleep more soundly. I am training for my fourth 5K — with obstacles! I’ve started “no elevator days” at the hospital where I work – on the eleventh floor! I’ve been excited to see changes in myself and have created a culture of health all around me. I’m famous for sharing recipes with co-workers. For encouraging others to make small changes that add up. I’m excited to keep up in ways I never could before. I’m thrilled to show off my new figure -it’s the visual aide for my success story.

I’m also excited that it’s not over! I’m not a goal weight, but I am so much closer than where I started. My past success drives me to achieve more. I’ve become a better version of myself. Through this journey, I’ve learned that I can be the smart one, the funny one, and the beautiful one.


Note: I’ve been hesitant to share my weight loss journey openly because I do not want to be solely a “thin-spirational” blog. But this journey is a part of me. It consumes a good portion of my thoughts. It requires planning. I would be remiss not to share this large part of my life. May you be inspired to be healthy and make small changes that really do add up!

Mar 21, 2013 - Health, Humor, My Story    No Comments

My Kamikaze Crown — UPDATE!

For those of you who missed it, my tooth fell out last week.

You can read the full story here.

This morning I phoned my dentist again and asked him to adjust the mouthguard or crown or something. You see since my crown literally leaped out of its home, I’ve been unable to wear my mouthguard for fear that I would repeat the same debacle.

Tooth glue Crown

But at night I apparently act out my dreams by clenching my teeth. So I’ve had a lot of dreams where my teeth fall out or glass breaks, or last night I dreamed that I had four flat tires. My mind plays weird tricks on me.

Anyway, I went to the dentist this morning and explained the problem. He donned the paper napkin on a chain and tilted me back in the chair. He then set to work checking the security of my “patch job.”

He Wiggled. Tugged. Rocked. Strained.

But the crown didn’t budge.

He exclaimed, “Wow! Good job. It’s in there really securely so I’m not going to mess with it until we put the permanent on. What did you use to glue it?”

I beamed. MacGyver skills score! It’s nice finding out you have talents you didn’t know you had!

Everything was filed down as needed and I hopefully won’t have any flat tire dreams for the foreseeable future.

Thanks for asking for an update, friends!



Mar 15, 2013 - Health, Humor, My Story    3 Comments

My Kamikaze Crown

My tooth fell out this morning.

Not kidding.

I’m in my thirties, well past the time when such occurrences should be common place. I’ve had a tooth that has given me loads of trouble over the past year. After a filling, a crown and a root canal (and several thousand dollars), it still isn’t fixed. I returned to the dentist this week to get the crown replaced. So I’m currently sporting a temporary crown on T3… complete with temporary cement.

Apparently, it just couldn’t hang on anymore and leap right off my tooth. My kamikaze crown.

So this morning when I  woke up and took out my mouthguard (another dental nightmare!) – my temporary crown came out wedged in the molding.


I immediately called the dentist and said he’d need to re-cement it. Only he wasn’t in today since he had a continuing education course… and wouldn’t be back until Tuesday. I felt the small remnant with my tongue — a puny plateau of a tooth — and knew this couldn’t wait until Tuesday.

MacGyver to the rescue!

I went to Walgreens and obtained over the counter tooth cement — who knew such a thing existed?! Perhaps I am not the only one who struggles with kamikaze crowns.

I pulled together my tools and placed them on a clean towel — so at least it somewhat resembled a sterile field! Toothpicks, Floss, hot water, ice water, and tooth glue.

Tooth glue Crown

First I had to exonerate the crown from it’s mouthguard casing. It was wedged tightly. So I alternated soaking it in warm water and then ice water until I could pop the crown loose. (I knew watching all that TV would be good for something!!) Then I got all of the old glue off that I could muster with floss and toothpicks. Brushed my teeth — very gingerly!– and put the Recapit to the test. Hours later the crown is still holding tight.

Here’s what I learned from this experience: I can’t prepare for everything! I want to think of all the possibilities, plan ahead, and not be caught off guard. But in dental work, as in life, that’s just not possible. I was thankful today that I was able to deal with a problem, and laugh at it at the same time. I am thankful with my planning gene doesn’t completely obliterate my “roll with it” gene and I can truly take life one crazy moment at a time, kamikaze crown and all.

How about you? Have you had any unexpected self-surgeries lately?

Mar 12, 2013 - Health, My Story    6 Comments

Shivers and Snot

I’m sick.

It’s gross… there’s just no way around that!

I’m not sure what bothers me most: the inability to ever maintain the correct temperature to blanket ratio for more than a minute, the incredible amount of tissue boxes that I consume in my snot-filled state, the hazy, drooped eye lids which only give me a partial view of the world, or the lack of productivity.

I know, I’m ridiculous! I’m sick. I’m allowed to have a cold! But I sit, blow my nose, drink my tea, clear my throat and think of all the things I should be doing. I should be at work. I should be writing blog posts. I should be making jewelry for my upcoming craft fairs.

I should be resting.

I am an incredibly driven person. In fact, my friend Abby recently said, “I’ve never thought of myself as lazy, but next to you, it’s like I never leave my bed!” I’m obsessed. A good day to me is a productive day. I’m fighting hard to break that pattern.

Perhaps my current state of shivers and snot is meant to force me to rest.

So I’m going to do that now and try not to focus on what isn’t getting done, but be thankful for what is.

PS- I’ll spare you photos for today. I’m sure you can imagine!

Jan 28, 2013 - Health    7 Comments

Take That, Self!

I did something today that I never thought would happen.

I’d thought about it. Dreamed about it. Planned for it. But not until today did I make it happen.

I ran a mile in under 10 minutes!

Here’s my proof!

watch time mile

I’ve never run in my life before six months ago. I walked half of the course as an elementary student. I enjoyed competition and sports, but running was not my forte. It is a very recent addition to my life. I wanted to challenge myself tonight so I measured out my course, chose a song peppy enough to get me started at the appropriate pace, and took off. It was rough. Don’t think anything different. I was a sweaty and wheezy mess at the end of that mile. I needed a significant cool down period. But I did it. It felt good — not during the run honestly — I’ve never hit that so-called runners high. It’s been described to me, but I have yet to understand it first hand.  But I can feed off the sense of accomplishment and experience a different kind of high! I run because I get to prove to myself that I am strong. That I can do it. That goals can be achieved.

A year ago, I never would have believed it! Take that, self!

Where to next, feet?

running shoes

Jan 14, 2013 - Health    3 Comments

The Happiest 5K on the Planet

Currently, I look like a pale smurf. You might confused me for being anoxic. I have a definite blue tinge all over my body… from running.

No — I didn’t lose oxygen in mile one and need ressussitation. I knew what I was getting myself into. I participated in the Color Run this weekend. You’ll have to judge for yourself if my run this morning lived up to its name!

Running – of any kind. Is a new thing for me.

For years, I said, “I’ve only been allotted a finite amount of run in my lifetime. I must save it because some day I might be chased by a dog or a man with a knife and I’ll want to have all that run saved up.”

I’m eating those words right now.

My best friend, Tracy, talked me into running last year. We saw it as a measurable goal. (Much like I talked about in a recent post.) It could show me how hard I’d worked and how far I’d come.

So today, I ran my second ever 5K!

It was billed as The Color Run: The Happiest 5K on the Planet! I figured I needed fun, fanfare, and flying corn starch to keep me going! As you run along the course, there are color stations each kilometer where volunteers absolutely drench each runner with colored corn starch. As you sweat (or get water thrown on you) you become more and more color-iffic.

Here’s my team… bright and white at the start!

Check out the air!


We met up with 10,000 of our closest friends and prepared to get messy.


You may wonder if we started out so clean and white… how’d we end up like this?

 Well, you know — A little of this and a little of that:

The Color Cloud!


A little more for good measure.


Now you get a better picture of why I look like a smurf even AFTER showering and scrubbing!


The pictures look fun and fancy free, but this race represented much more than just a completion or a pace for me. It represented progress, health, discipline, training, and incredible achievement. I no longer save the run! I dance through it with a smile on my face! I’m quite proud of myself.

Thumbs up for sure!




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