Friday, April 30, 2010

Show Me the Money

There have been many valuable lessons learned as I have entered the real world post college. Some were more grand than others. Some were more difficult than others. But a common theme amongst many of the lessons learned was money.

I have said this before and will continue to release it from my lips into the air...

Adulthood is expensive.

It's always been a strange idea that we have to make money to simply survive. If I want a roof under which to live, I have to make money. If I want to make my bi-monthly trip to Smith's Marketplace for groceries, I have to make money. Gas for my car? Money.

I also know that I am certainly one who works to live, and does not live to work. I love being a nurse and the many ways I get to help others find better health, but the job title is not at the crux of who I am.

With a pricey knee surgery and school bills headed my way, I have felt the need to create a more concrete budget and follow it closely.

Oh, look, another adult life lesson. Budgeting.

Like my mother mentioned the other day, "What has happened to Franklin Covey? They make such great daily planners. I would like an app for that."

Because we all want "an app for that," why not get a budget app?

So I did! It's called Budgetroid. And it rocks.

Now I can forget about saving receipts (like I did much of that anyway), and having to record each purchase into a Word Document, or Quicken (if I had that...). I simply whip out my cool new 3G android phone and access my app.

My uber cool Budgetroid app.

I select which category the purchase falls under, I type in the purchase amount, and wah-lah! I have a color coded, organized, and efficient method to keep on track.

Though often my blog posts are simply for me to record my own thoughts and experiences, I think this was subconsciously written for my parents.

See mom and dad? Your coaching has paid off. Cha-ching!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

November Baby

I have this girlfriend. Well, more like a sister.

She is tall and blonde and pretty.

She has a delightfully funny potty mouth and can make me laugh more than anybody else.

I have often told her that if she were male, she would be my soul mate.

She is super athletic and loves to road bike.

She is kind, sweet, and sarcastic.

Her name is Jessica.

A year ago, she married a guy named Tony.

And today...

she is ten weeks pregnant.

Congratulations Jessica and Tony!

And thank you for making me an aunt. Cannot wait to meet the little person this fall...

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Tough it Out

I am a healthy individual. Lately, I have filled out so many health questionnaires for doctor's offices and surgery centers that I know when asked the question, "Do you have a history of..." I say no. To everything.

Same goes for seasonal colds and flu's. I rarely get sick.

Well, last weekend, my older and wiser brother, Parker, graduated from Brigham Young University.

My immune system must have known my family was coming into town, thinking it would be alright to let down its guard because outside help would be close by. More specifically, my mom would be there. And moms make the best nurses.

During Thursday's commencement proceedings in the Marriott Center, my body began to ache all over. It made me think, "Is this what fibromyalgia patients suffer from everyday?" But then I began to fidget so much from feeling so uncomfortable, I felt bad for the people sitting behind me. Maybe I should have popped a Ritalin just to appease their judgmental eyes.

As we made the drive from campus to a neighboring city for dinner, I stepped out of Jamal (our black Toyota Sequoia) and knew this was more than a flighty case of body aches. Sans bathroom, my lunch made it's reappearance next to a silver truck, with my mom and little sister standing guard. Needless to say, I had to constantly divert my senses away from the meatball sandwiches and pesto chicken pasta ordered that night by family members to prevent any future gravity defying stomach spills.

The saga continued, including Friday morning when I received a phone call from a friend, Derek, to ask an important question at 8am. He told me to suck it up and put my game face on. I responded with a good laugh and I fell back asleep.

With a little bit of luck, I made the trip back to Provo for the convocation ceremonies with my mom at the wheel of my car. Despite getting to know the Marriott Center's bathrooms a little too intimately that afternoon, it was an absolute pleasure to watch Parker strut across the stage and receive his diploma.

What. a. stud.

That night my mom made an emergency trip to Albertsons for the necessities and my little sister helped peel off my knee high boots and crawl into a cozy Boise State soccer sweatshirt.

Hopped up on Tylenol PM and a belly full of Sprite and Saltines, my fever broke that night.

Thank goodness, because I had to get up the next morning to teach a weight loss surgery class to potential patients.

Now how's that for a game face, Derek?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Medical Courtship

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010... I have a date with a surgeon.

No, not that guy.

This guy...

He technically is the same age as my dad.
He happens to be married. (But apparently these days that doesn't matter.)
I will be asleep for the duration of the date.
I may even wake up from said sleep and vomit all over him from nausea.
I am also planning to wear a sexy cotton backless gown.
And I will pay.
In 15 days I will be going under the knife for left ACL repair, for the third time.
Despite my date giving me a swollen and incredibly pained knee, he does give me some good drugs out of the deal. (But then again.. he prescribes, I pay.)
Until then, I'll ice my knee and pop ibuprofen like candy. It's like going on a carb-free diet before swimsuit season. (But then again.. I've never done that.)
Wish this gimp luck.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Be Positive, Lose an Electron

I'm not going to try and be eloquent, here.

It's torn. My Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) is torn. Again, times three.

Dr. Kirk Lewis' repair didn't hold. Now Dr. George Wade's repair didn't hold either.

Will Dr. Michael Holmstrom's surgical gift be the one to survive until the day I am laid to rest in the ground? (Or burned to ashes? Haven't yet decided which, but I think I have time).

Clearly the surgeons are not to blame, as they each gave me 3-4 years of high school and collegiate soccer. I even "medically retired" my career at Boise State a year early to prevent any more ACL tears.

Well, call me crazy, I decided to join an indoor coed league in Salt Lake because I didn't think the level of competition would be as intense. Just as previous tears have proven, the competitive nature of the game doesn't really matter.

All three tears have stemmed from planting and cutting and ZERO contact.

Hell, I can be shopping and tear my ACL! The sudden marked decrease in my walking speed can be seen as soon as I hit the sale rack at J. Crew and can cause a tear. It's true.

But this go around really hurts. Really devastates. Really disheartens.

The second play into the game late Thursday night, I came from behind and stuck my left leg out in front of a guy ready to release the ball. I planted with purposeful force and my weight plunged forward all onto my knee.

And snap.

I felt and heard the tear. Sounds like the loudest knuckle pop in the world.

The pain was unprecedented. And I knew exactly what I had done (even though I still paid the $25 copay to hear it from an MD's mouth).

As soon as my teammates helped me to the bench, I immediately began to feel physically nauseous and I began to hyperventilate. A combination of knowing the road that lie ahead of me and the actual response to the physical pain, I had to lie down to prevent throwing up or passing out.

For the next 40 minutes, I had to rest on the chipped paint bench and stew over what had just taken place. It felt unreal, like a bad dream that I couldn't wake up from. Or like I could somehow pretend that this actually didn't happen. Well unlike Michael J. Fox, I myself cannot go back in time and reverse unfortunate events. What's done was done.

As Dashboard Confessional's "Vindicated" played through the facilities speakers, I stared up at the high ceiling and cried.

And I cried some more.

I called my parents later that night (nearing midnight) and I cried even more.

I threw on some freshly washed undies and my Harvard Medical School t-shirt and hobbled into bed.

And I cried myself to sleep.

But like most things in life, time heals wounds and my emotional strength is already gearing up nicely to tackle a third surgery and the long arduous consequential recovery.

Tomorrow at 8:45am, I see Dr. Holmstrom at The Orthopedic Specialty Hospital (woohoo for SLC having a plethora of surgeons readily available) and the journey will begin.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Your Official Plans for Saturday Morning

Saturday morning, April 17th, Salt Lake City is hosting their annual marathon races! Full 26.2 mile marathon, half marathon, 5K, and a bike race make up the events for the spring morning. The half marathon starts at the University of Utah and finishes at the Gateway mall. With the race starting at 7am, you should expect runners, one in particular, to cross the finish line around 8:45am.

If you love to run or enjoy sports in any capacity, this is where you should be Saturday morning.

If you want to see a particular blogging brunette running the streets of Salt Lake in Nike and Aasics, this is where you should be Saturday morning.

Or even if you don't give a damn about exercising and adrenaline and me, this is still where you should be Saturday morning.

Find a copy of the half marathon route here.

Your Official Plans for Saturday Night

Saturday, April 17th, @ 7:30pm, Salt Lake Community College is hosting their annual Raw Couture Fashion Show at the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center (138 West 300 South).

If you love fashion, this is where you should be Saturday night.

If you want to watch a particular blogging brunette strutting a runway, this is where you should be Saturday night.

Or even if you don't give a damn about clothes or couture or me, this is still where you should be Saturday night.

For $19, buy your ticket here.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


So just for fun, I do a little bit of modeling. The occasional gigs I actually get do pay some green stuff, but the art form is more like a hobby of mine. Like crafting or sewing or cooking or walking on a runway or posing in front of a camera. They're all one in the same, right?

If you disagree, the questioned posed is rhetorical.

My hobby is defined as a hobby because I don't get paid nearly enough to make it more of a source of income. I do it because it is so fun and even produces the same adrenaline created in playing a game of soccer or running a race.

My jobs are few and far between. And I am more than okay with that. I have a college degree for a reason.

Well, yesterday I met with a world-renowned modeling agent, Paul Fisher. Sir Paul has personally represented supermodels with names like Naomi Campbell, Brooke Burke, Janice Dickinson, Kimora Lee Simmons, and Nicky Hilton. Yes, I am totally name dropping.

He chose to meet with the models within the McCarty agency and evaluate where we could fit in with "The Network." This is a business method for models/agencies who normally are offered local bookings to achieve larger, more profitable jobs.

As usual, when I walk into modeling auditions, I know that no one cares about how well I can articulate and express myself. It's more about the cheekbone's altitude, the fullness of the lips, or the choreography of an outfit. Understandably, auditions feel shallow.

But this time, as I walked in to meet Paul, he looked at me and studied me, as if I were a geometry equation and the angles of my facial features needed to be determined. It felt mathematical; and moreover, non-judgmental.

He asked me what types of jobs I typically get for McCarty. I responded with commercial and runway. He nodded in agreement and then said, "And I bet those jobs are few and far between."

Not offended, I also nodded in agreement. I trusted his experience and his ability to see something and know where it belongs.

And he knew where I belonged.

"You would be PERFECT for my Natural Beauty group."

I'm wearing loads of make-up right now. I'm calling BS on that one.

"Currently, there are really only two categories of models: Twigs and Plus-Size."

Yes. I am following. Continue.

"The Natural Beauty group is for sizes 6-8 who fall in the middle ground. Don't lose any weight and don't gain any weight. You are perfect."

Will you repeat that? I don't think I heard you right. I think you just used the P-word.

And with that, Paul Fisher became my personal saint.

I have always valued my opinion of myself and my ability to find confidence from within. But to hear my thoughts echoed from an experienced professional's mouth was so satisfying. Redemptive. Exciting.

I am not sure what bookings will come from this interview, if any.

But what I feel to be the most gratifying element from meeting Paul Fisher is that perhaps our social standards are expanding. One body ideal is not another's body ideal. And that encouraging women to love their bodies just as they are, and to describe them as a "natural beauty" is a fantastic thought.

I am a firm believer that if a woman humbly thinks of herself as beautiful, she looks beautiful to those around her. Confidence speaks, and people listen.

Rock on my lovely lady friends!

Friday, April 2, 2010


Last night, our indoor coed soccer team experienced the first sweet taste of victory.

The key to the game? Have half the team either go on a Mexican cruise or to Las Vegas the weekend prior, and make sure they come home with severe needs of recuperation. This will ensure total domination on a Thursday night in the competitive arena.

Seems irrational?

It works.

We know.