Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Smoothie Like None Other

Behold the greenest smoothie you will ever find. Mom enthusiastically demonstrated the recipe she had learned at the local Sam's Club.

1/2 Can White grape 100% juice concentrate
1/2 Banana
1/8 Lime Wedge
1 -2 Mint Leaves
(now for the unusual part)
Handful of Spinach
Add Ice until thick

There you have it.
This smoothie/ice-cream/sorbet is not for the faint of heart. But I think those who dare to try it will be pleasantly surprised.

I did a cheezy commercial for this amazing recipe but I can't figure out how to post the video. You were spared ; )

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Love that "seeketh not her own"

"It will be seen that the glory shining in the face of Jesus is the glory of self-sacrificing love. In the light from calvary it will be seen that the law of self-renouncing love is the law of life for earth and heaven; that the love which "seeketh not her own" has its source in the heart of God: and that in the meek and lowly One is manifested the character of Him who dwelleth in the light which no man can approach unto."

Desire of Ages pg 20

When I think about the birth Christ I am blown away, astonished, amazed - but not as I should be. The self-sacrificing love that shines down from that one event of history is just as dazzling bright today as it was then. Blindingly bright even. Those that contemplate this love's brightness are blinded to their own petty wants, desires and dreams. I want this self-sacrificing love -this love that gives not to receive, loves the unlovable, and dies that others may live.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Voice of God

5:30 am: Cell phone buzzes in the depths of my pillowcase.
My first thoughts --"Nooooo...it can't already be 5:30. O Lord I'm so tired I can hardly move, somehow You've got to get me through this day."


"I'm so tired...maybe I can afford to get up at 6...maybe..." I quickly set another alarm and drift off.

6:00 am: Phone buzzes in my hand. "Ok, this is it. You've got to get up Heather!" I propped myself up on my elbow in bed and began a sleep muddled, foggy minded prayer...."Oh God please help me..."


"...Lord, clinicals were so exhausting last night - I didn't get to bed til nearly 1 am. I've got so much to do today. I've pushed it as it is. I don't even feel like I have time for quiet time with You...but I'm going to put You first because You're my everything. I'm so weak dear God - I feel like I've reached the end of my energy..."


"...Heavenly Father there is no way I can make it through today without you. I've got nothing left in me. You've promise to perfect Your strength in us when we're weak...well I'm weak Lord and I'm choosing to trust. Help me to just get out of bed and live today for Your glory."


With great effort I throw back the covers, maneuver down my ladder, stubble over to my desk and start looking for my Bible. "Where is it? I must have stuck it in my backpack or purse or bag or...oh I'm just too tired to rummage through every bag." Impulsively I grab a book off the shelf: Desire of Ages.

I Shuffle out the door, around the corner to the hall lobby and collapse by a chair in the corner.
" Lord, here I am again. I'm here to connect with You but my thoughts are hardly coherent. I need Your Spirit to teach me something...somehow...if possible please somehow keep me awake..."


"Lord I want to hear You...please speak through Your prophets writings..." *pause* I jerk myself awake enough to manage some sort of "amen". I crawl into the chair, blink my eyes a few times to clear the sleepy haze, opened the book randomly in the middle and read:

Chapter 34 -- The Invitation

"Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavey-laden, and I will give you rest. ...
In these words Christ is speaking to every human being. Whether they know it or not, all are weary and heavy-laden. All are weighed down with burdens that only Christ can remove... He has borne the burden of our guilt. He will take the load from our weary shoulders. He will give us rest. The burden of care and sorrow also He will bear. He invites us to cast all our care upon Him; for He carries us upon His heart.

He is watching aver you, trembling child of God. Are you tempted? He will deliver. Are you weak? He will strengthen. Are you ignorant? He will enlighten. Are you wounded? He will heal. ...
Come unto Me is His invitation. Whatever your anxieties and trials, spread out your case before the Lord. Your spirit will be braced for endurance....
The weaker and more helpless you know yourself to be, the stronger will you become in His strength. The heavier your burdens, the more blessed the rest in casting them upon the Burden Bearer."

And in the midst of silence, I heard the voice of God.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Giving Thanks

Some of the festivities of Thanksgiving. Beautiful mountains, smell of baking pumpkin, fun in the kitchen, family and friends...I have so much to be thankful for!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Cereal in a Laundry Basket

I walked into my dark dorm room and felt around for the light. It had been a long day and I was looking forward to finishing my supper that had been interrupted a hour earlier. I set my books down on the desk and looked for the box of Wild Blueberry Cluster Kashi I had left sitting out. There was no box to be seen. While I was still trying to formulate a vague hypothesis of where the box might have walked off to I heard a faint crunching sound that caused my gaze to shift downward. Ah! There it was! Sitting in my laundry basket. Impulsively I grabbed the box out of the laundry, thinking only of having a delicious evening snack. The cascade of Blueberry Clusters that followed alerted me right away that this decision was not a wise one. My cereal box, having not been properly closed, had landed upside down in the basket...a mess waiting to happen.

The sight of 1/3 of the cereal boxes contents in my laundry basket elicited a groaned "ohhh noooo" from me. For the next few moments I further proved my intelligence by simply starring at the unexpected sight. After some consideration I decided this was either an unfortunate mess or a amusing opportunity. Which would it be.....

Having decided on my plan of action I proceeded to put my coat in the closet, put away the unruly cereal box and kick off my shoes. Equipped with a spoon and peach silk yogurt I made myself comfortable on the floor and enjoyed Blueberry Clusters in a laundry basket. Not only did I have a delicious supper, but a good laugh as well. If given a choice, choose laughter and thanksgiving. It makes all the difference.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Is This a Day of New Beginnings?

Is this a day of new beginnings,
Time to remember and move on,
Time to believe what love is bringing,
Laying to rest the pain that's gone?

How can the seasons of a planet
Mindlessly spinning round its sun
With just a human name and number
Say that some new thing has begun?

Yet thro' the life and death of Jesus
Love's mighty Spirit, now as then,
Can make for us a world of difference
As faith and hope are born again.

Then let us, with the Spirit's daring,
Step from the past and leave behind
Its disappointment, guilt, and grieving
Seeking new paths, and sure to find.

Christ is alive, and goes before us
To show and share what love can do.
This is a day of new beginnings;
Our God is making all things new.

~ Hymn # 342 - words and melody by Brian Wren

Who knew this was in the Hymnal? Its not sung often. The words are powerful and I feel stirred in my inner most soul after reading them. We cannot, by mere human will power, give ourselves a new beginning and start a new life. Human promises and intentions are as "ropes of sand". But when we surrender and allow God to be a work in us to will and do His good pleasure we are truly given a new beginning! We are restored and we can move forward boldly, excited to see what God has in store!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Learning to be a Handygirl

During this summer my skills in the area of home renovation have been vastly expanded to include hanging sheetrock, installing L brackets, painting cabinets and filling holds... correctly. It has been an education, no question. I have new found respect for Handymen who do all these things professionally on a daily basis. Mudding sheetrock is nothing to be sneezed at!

So despite the constant paint speckles on my arms and the frustration of dust getting in my eyes as I sand, I am enjoying this "handy- business".

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Close Call

I was driving to the hospital this morning feeling very happy. After waiting a long time I was finally on my way to the OR to observe surgeries. Ever since my clinical in surgery I had been dreaming of observing surgeries at the local hospital in my home town during the summer... now it was happening!

Once I had changed into scrubs I followed Robin, the charge nurse, into the area where patients were being prepped for surgery. I had no qualms or jitters, only nervous excitement! As we ducked around some curtains I saw a CRNA bent over a lady's right shoulder area. He was attempting to administer a Scalene Block. Not fully understanding what was going on I cautiously peered around the anesthetist trying to get a better view. Ever so slowly and methodically he was probing her shoulder with a large needle which was delivering mild electrical shocks. The idea was that when he hit the right nerve her hand would begin to twitch up and down. First her stomach jumped for awhile and then finally her hand jolted. Bingo.

I was facinated by this process, although slightly concerned at the pain the lady might be experiencing. The probing needle part did not look comfortable. All of the sudden it felt as if someone had turned the thermostat up to 100 F. I became increasingly aware of a strange feeling in my legs and head. Feeling clammy and slightly nauseous from the heat I wondered silently how these people could put up with such a stifling temperature. For a while I stoically stood there willing myself to remain upright in hopes the feeling would pass. With every second my head felt more swimmy, my eyes refused to focus and my knees threatened to crumple out from under me. "Surely I'm not going to faint?!" I thought to myself "this is ridiculous!" I remembered that nursing instructors had told us to squat down if we even felt woozy. Hoping not to attract attention to myself I nonchalantly squatted down for a few seconds, hoping to be miraculously cured. When I straightened up I realized that no miraculous cure had occurred. In fact it became clear that unless I found a seat immediately I would soon be laid out on the floor. "Is there somewhere I could sit down?" I ask quietly. Gratefully I sank into the seat Robin pointed out. By this time I felt like my head was now floating above my body and that the thermostat was at a sweltering 200 F. "You ok hun?" one nurse queried. "She looks white as a sheet don't she?" Robin interjected. "Now you just sit there, the bathrooms right there and I'm going to go get you a Sprite. Don't you move without you telling me alright?" With that she disappeared around the corner.

Half-heartedly I sipped the Sprite, but was more interested in holding the cold can to my burning face. "What is happening to me?" I wondered as I leaned forward shakily, willing my foggy head to clear. "My dear!! you're diaphoretic!" exclaimed one nurse as she pressed a cold towel to my slippery forehead. Looking down I noticed my scrubs looked as if they had been hit by a large water balloon. The sweet nurses wheeled in a hospital bed for me to lay down on. You cannot imagine how sheepish I felt laying there in the OR Recovery Unit. I wished I could melt into the floor... physically I felt like I was about to get my wish.

Only after I had downed about half of my Sprite did I begin to come back into the land of the living. And then and only then did I begin to see the amusing aspect of the situation! Thankfully the rest of my OR experience went off without a hitch. I was able to observe a colonoscopy, shoulder scope - rotator cuff repair, knee arthroscopy and i&d (irrigation & debridement) of an knee with cellulitis. All in all it was an excellent experience.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Savage Gardener

Seldom does something cause me to be violent and aggressive. I am not one that can kill a thing without thinking twice. In fact I have been known to take pity on mice, rats, snakes, spiders and all manner of pesky or dangerous wild-life. It is not in my nature to hurt or destroy...but I have found one exception. There is one thing on which I will take no pity and have no mercy! I attack it will a vengeance unmitigated. Determinedly I assail it with a shovel, even fighting it with my own bare (yet gloved) hands until I have finished it off once and for all!! I will not rest until it is cut off from all life support and hurled into the trash!!!

What is this horrid thing you ask?...


Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Humming Alpacas

While I've been staying at my Uncle's house I've had the privilege of indulging my love for animals and gardening. Many mornings I get up with my cousin Brianna at 6 am to help her with her chores. We feed the Alpacas and chickens, make sure they have water for the day and then water the garden. It is a wonderful way to start the day!

Just a few days ago "shearing day" rolled around. All the Alpacas were due for their yearly haircut. I had never witnessed such an event and was very curious to observe what all goes on. I found myself not just observing but right in the thick of it. Catching a skittish Alpaca and getting them prone on a shearing table is quite the experience! Much like camels and lama's, Alpaca's are capable of spitting or drooling a very vile substance which made the process that much more exciting. They cry and "hum" very pitifully during the whole hour long process. I was given the job of holding their head. As I gazed down into their doe eye's, being careful to stay out of spitting range, and heard their mournful singing I began to hum back out of sympathy. I'm not sure what I was saying in Alpaca language but I hope that comfort was communicated one way or the other. Amazingly they calmed down and remained calm as long as I hummed to them. I found it to be calming to me as well. There is just something beautiful about spending an hour humming to an Alpaca.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Productivity 2

I'm happy to report that out of the 10 "To Do" items listed below 3 only remain undone.

Now I think I'll get going on the vacuuming so the house looks nice for when Mom gets home this evening!

That leaves the law class...ugh. I'll do that Monday.

Unfortunately the flower garden planting is the one item that gets left entirely out in the cold - guess it won't get done til' July.

Not bad over-all I'd say! List-making can certainly help ya out sometimes! ;)

Monday, May 18, 2009


Alrighty! I've got 3 days of having the house all to myself and a "To Do" list" which is rather long. What shall I do first?

-Mow the lawn

-Vacuum the entire house

- Clean my room

- Clean up the Basement

- Go to the Bank

- Hoe the Daisy Garden

- Plant something in the Daisy Garden :)

- Complete the Massage TN Law Class (5 hr minimum)

- Call about observing surgery

- Help out at the School

Hmmmmm... guess I'll go get some breakfast.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Day Away...

Sometimes there comes a time to take a day away and do something unusual...

...and enjoy the unconventional.

...it was wonderful!

Monday, April 20, 2009

I'm an Ephesian

"To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: The words of Him who holds the seven stars in His right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands...I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent , and do the works you did at first."

~ Rev. 2: 1,4,5

How silently, gradually...almost imperceptibility my "first love" experience slips away from me. I do not realize it until I am jolted from my daze and find myself painfully far from the One whom I once loved with such passion.

How do you find your way back? He tells us to "remember"...remember the first time His sacrifice became real to you,... remember the time you cried because He gave all to buy back unworthy little you, ...remember the joy of total surrender...remember...remember from where you have fallen and repent.

Run back to the place you last saw the light. Cast off everything that might hold you back. The Ever Patient One is waiting for you...

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Thoughts on Nursing

All of us have seen those pictures of nurses looking much akin to stylish angels in white. Starched and the very picture of cleanliness they were more apt to be holding a lamp (tribute to the revered Florence Nightingale) than a Foley Catheter (which would not be in good taste of course!). This image of nurses is a very pleasant one indeed. What little girl doesn't want to grow up to be like the pretty lady in white? In fact, the day I got my student nurse uniform in the mail was a happy one indeed! Here was my chance to look like a starched angel in white! Putting on that uniform made me feel composed, knowledgeable and incredibly professional! It was marvelous!

This morning I step foot in a hospital for the first time in uniform. I experienced many conflicting feelings: awe, fear, euphoria...I couldn't quite decide how I felt. As I devotedly trailed my clinical instructor, flipped tentatively through charts and was shown medication scanners etc. I saw things a little differently. One look and I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that my "starched angel with a lamp" image was grossly inaccurate. You might think I was disappointed, but indeed I was not! What I saw instead were highly talented "wonder women" who juggled baths, meals, meds as if it was second nature! They read the doctors chicken scratch notes with ease and worked around nitty gritty policies with unstudied efficiency! Jaw-dropping! Truly jaw-dropping! It may be hard for you to see the astonishment factor in what I just described if you have never tried filling the shoes of a nurse before. Let me enlighten you...the hospital beds can out smart an average person, the docters handwriting really does looks like chinese and once translated might as well be greek! In order to just get your patient a toothbrush you must not only remember a certain combination to get into the storage room, but also know how to scan and charge to either floor or paitent etc. etc. When I pictured being a nurse I picture many challenging situation, but not these!

I guess my image of nurses has shifted from gliding angels of white to a more realistic view. I may be far from composed and stately as I rush around, but I'll still be helping people and thats what counts.