Friday, April 29, 2011

The night before last I opened up a Dove chocolate piece to indulge in during my studying. The message inside read "You are allowed to do nothing"!! Best one I have ever gotten, and I took the advice, relaxed a little, and then went to bed. I find myself ALWAYS in a hurry. I get ready in a hurry, study in a hurry, do chores in a hurry, eat in a hurry, on and on... trying to fit in as much as possible. I think part of it is my personality, and the big other part is I really have that much to do.  I am often in need of a little reminder to slow up. Maybe I just need to eat more Dove's...what a good excuse for chocolate!

Speaking of relaxing, when I finish my last exam on Tuesday, I will have 10 days to R.E.L.A.X. before our departure to North Africa. No school, no work, no plans! Can you plan not to plan? Not sure, but I have!

Despite exams, I had a wonderful birthday yesterday! The best part was seeing and talking to so many of you!! I enjoyed an early run with Patricia, a free Starbucks latte (yes, Starbucks gives a free drink on your birthday), and then lunch with Tricia and Mary Ann at The Glass Onion.

I am looking forward to being able to celebrate my birthday this weekend too. Tonight I am going to eat fresh seafood with some girlfriends at Bowen's Island, followed by an after party of watching the royal wedding! Cole is taking me on a birthday date on Saturday :)

Thank you all for my wonderful birthday wishes!!! I am so blessed to have so many great friendships!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

4 Down, 2 to Go!

Exams on my birthday week...yuk!!

After my exam this morning, I headed downtown with 2 goals 1) sunglasses and 2) use my HandPicked Groupon.

Sunglasses, check! If you ever need sunglasses, King Street is about the best place to go. I spent about 2 hours wandering and trying on glasses at Sunglass Hut, SEE, Jackson Davenport, and another optometrist store. My options were not lacking. I ended up with a pair of Costas from Jackson Davenport (thank you Frances for the recommendation) and love them! I debated on style vs. sport glasses and I think these are a nice mix.
CostaDelMar Isabella
Next on to HandPicked. As I have already mentioned multiple times...I love Groupon! My mom treated me to this one! I am usually one for more classic jewelry, and their selection is definitely trendy, but for the prices, I don't feel bad about getting some things I know I may not like in 20 years!! I have been known to say that I will never buy anything I could make...but let's be honest...I don't have time to make jewelry these days! I chose two fun pieces!

Now it is 3 o'clock and I am just now getting starting on my exam for Friday... story of my life!! I best get to it!!
Publish Post

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Christ Has Risen!!

On Friday night, our church had a Good Friday service. It was a very different service than what we are normally familiar with. The lights were off and the entire atmosphere was dark and heavy. The service was led by a powerpoint so that no one spoke and we sang, read, prayed, and took communion. The focus was on seeing the immensity of our sin. Isaiah 53 was the theme. 

On the way home, we discussed what value, if any, that a service has on having the focus solely on Christ's death without the resurrection. We determined that for us, it was indeed very beneficial! Today, the celebration in our hearts was so much greater, having first experienced how undeserving we are of Christ. I find myself often on Easter so thankful for the empty tomb with little opportunity to focus on His death first. 

On a lighter note...Cole and I dyed Easter eggs last night! Who knew this childhood tradition could still be so much fun!

Here are a few of our techniques! On this one we used a wax crayon to draw on the egg before dipping it. 

The next photo is called "marbling". I got the idea from Martha Stewart's Living magazine this month. Basically, you dip the eggs, let them dry, and then use a darker/different color with olive oil mixed in and dip again. Pretty cool! 

Cole marbled his Clemson egg too!

This is one of my favs. 
Happy Easter!!

On my run this morning, a bunny hopped out of the woods beside me! I got to see an Easter bunny today :) 

Chocolate Egg Nests

Cole and I are going to a potluck cookout after church today, and this is what we made last night to bring!
Aren't these the cutest thing? I made "No-Bake Cookies" and then topped them with a 3 pastel colored robin eggs and peanut butter M&Ms. Thanks Tassie for the inspiration! 

Happy Easter!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Sunshine is a comin'

With my birthday quickly approaching, I have decided to ask for a new pair on sunglasses. Mine long ago had one too many falls and one too many scratches.

Any suggestions? I am looking for something basic, yet stylish. Polarized lens and full coverage are a must.

These are what I would call my "oldy goldies." Since early high school I have owned 2 pair of these. They have proved reliable and are a lightweight classic. My debate is to whether to get them again? or should I branch out to something different? I may be too attached!!

Ray Ban

My sister has a pair of Costa's and loves them. I could go for this pair.
CostaDelMar's Cheeca
I feel in love with these until I realized they weren't polarized. On sale + free shipping. Bummer! 
Gucci's young and modern frame
These Tory Burch's are fun! But, with my track record, I tend to keep sunglasses around a while. Are these just a fad?
Tory Burch

This is a new brand I have come across- Contego. I like the sophisticated frame and unique look. 
Contego's The Morrison
Do you have any sunglasses that are to die for? I'm open to feedback and suggestions!!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Good Eats This Week

  First off, the salmon dish I posted about a few days ago was absolutely delicious! The quinoa was quite good as well. It resembled a rice but with a somewhat nutty flavor. 
Moroccan Salmon with Quinoa and Carrots
My spinach has FINALLY grown big enough to where I felt comfortable picking the leaves for spinach salads. We ate the spinach this week for the first time! Yum!


This was Southern Living's Chili Cheese Hash Brown Bake. It was a easy and fast dinner. I used ground turkey instead of beef, as always, and probably would have added a can of kidney beans to the mix if I did it again. Cole really liked it (He promised he just wasn't saying so!!), but I thought it was just ok.

My mom gets total credit for this one. It is hands down the best chicken dish I have had in a long time! It is HEALTHY and EASY! Basically, lightly salt and pepper chicken breasts and cook chicken in a non-stick pan with a little olive oil. Transfer to a plate and cover to keep warm. Using the same pan, add 1/2 cup good quality balsamic vinegar and 1/4 cup pine nuts. (I used slivered almonds, as pine nuts are WAY outside of my grocery budget these days.) Cook on medium heat for about 30sec-1min to reduce (or until about 1/2 of the liquid remains). Add 2 tablespoons of raspberry honey mustard and mix well to make a smooth glaze. Return the chicken to the pan and turn to coat each side with the glaze. Cook for another minute or until chicken is done completely. 
Balsamic Chicken
I roasted squash to serve with the chicken. I mixed olive oil, minced garlic, and a dab of water and coated the squash.  Then, I broiled them on high for about 10 minutes on each side and added salt and pepper to taste. I can't wait for summer veggies!

I use a "silpat" to go over my cookie sheets (if you are wondering why it looks funny). NOTHING sticks to it so it makes for a very easy cleanup. Here is the link:
Roasted Squash

This recipe was a great one to use my "Special Balsamic Vinegar" from Oil&Vinegar (see previous post about this awesome place!). 

Balsamic Vinegar and Raspberry Honey Mustard

One last recipe to share! Tonight, I cooked Cooking Light's Herb-Crusted Chicken and Parsley Orzo and Southern Living's Scalloped Sweet Potato Stacks. Cole said this goes in his top 10 favorite meals. I have to admit, it was tasty!
I got to use both my parsley and thyme.
The chicken is seasoned with some spices that I had gotten as a gift from Paige.  I also added in some carrots, onions, and garlic to the orzo to give it an extra zest. 
This is what the picture in Southern Living looked liked for the stacks. Come on, I thought, they will never slip perfectly out of the muffin pans and look like that!
I tried anyway. It is best to go ahead and assume yours won't look as good, so then when it flops you are not disappointed and if it happens to turn out ok you feel like you did great! (The beauty of creating your own recipe is that there are no expectations!)
Scalloping the potatoes and shredding the fresh mozarella
I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised! 
I think I could get in to food photography :)
I have been thankful for small amounts of time to cook this week despite exams. I do love it! I am learning a lot and often call Mom to ask any number of questions I have. Tonight's question was "Can I use whipping cream instead of heavy cream?" (The sweet potato recipe calls for a little bit and whipping cream was all that I had). She said yes since I was just baking it. Thanks Mom!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Not Your Ordinary Table

I have recently come across these tables and love them!! This company custom makes tables, benches, and home decor.  I have always imagined a big thick wooden table in the casual dining room one day. These are just about perfect. I am sure they come with a price tag! Better yet, Daddy, do you think you could make one?

Monday, April 18, 2011

Middleton Place

Cole and I have seen the best of Charleston this spring! For my birthday last year, my 3 best friends in pharmacy school gave me a gift certificate for Cole and I to use for Middleton Place Plantation. I have held on to it for almost a year now, waiting until the flowers were at peak. This past week they were, and  we went on another "staycation". 
Molly, Lesli, Alison, and I
There are many things about school that make me wish I were working instead, but one thing I love is the freedom of flexibility. We went on a weekday! Although it made for a Saturday full of schoolwork, we were able to just take off when the weather was nice. I am going to miss this in a few short years.

Middleton was SO fun! We spent a few hours roaming around in the gardens and at the stables. I also bought a $25 gift certificate to the restaurant there for $2 (woo hoo!) which made for a nice and relaxing (and cheap) lunch. The food was outstanding. If you are planning to visit, which I would highly suggest, do it before the scorching hot weather is on its way in for the summer.

Middleton also holds a special place in my heart because I took my wedding portraits on the property. It was fun reminiscing and showing Cole where all the pictures had been taken! My mom and sister and I have some great (and warm) memories of our day there! I can't believe it's been 1 year and 7 months since we were there. Here are a few of my favorites!

Thanks again to Fred Salley Photography!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Lamb Selection Day

Tomorrow is Palm Sunday. When I think of Palm Sunday, I imagine all these people in drapes and sandals waving palm branches at Jesus as he rode through the city of Jerusalem. Maybe this is what it looked like, but I have learned so much more about that day. Much of the symbolism of Palm Sunday and Passover is lost today because we are so unaware of the Jewish customs at the time.  I have recently looked into this and found some really amazing things!

The Jews traveled to Jerusalem for Passover each year as a celebration of God taking the Israelites out of Egypt. Five days prior (Palm Sunday), a clean and perfect lamb was selected (Exodus 12:3-6) that they would sacrifice for the Passover. This is why Palm Sunday is also known to the Jewish community as "Lamb Selection Day".

The lamb was to male, without any defects or impurities, and had to be eaten without breaking any bones (Exodus 12: 3-6, 46). What does this remind you of?! Jesus! Male, without sin, and when he was crucified, not one of his bones were broken (1 Peter 1:19). Woah! In fact, Jesus came into Jerusalem riding on a donkey (to fulfill Zec 9:9) the very day that the Jewish people chose their spotless lamb. He chose himself to be the sacrifice!

The sad thing is that the people did not recognize this. They shouted "hosanna" which means "save me"and waved palm branches signifying nationalsim/desire for political freedom. They wanted an earthly king to save them (John 12:12-19). Will we recognize His sacrifice? His kingship?

So, now I remember Palm Sunday as Lamb Selection Day, the day that Christ selected Himself to be the sacrifice for my sins. Wow. 

1 Corinthians 5:17 "For Christ, our Passover Lamb, has been sacrificed."

Isaiah 53: 5-8 "But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way;  and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth;  he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth."


      Often times I am convicted because I rarely take a Sunday to rest completely. Church is a priority for Cole and I because we value our fellowship and instruction there, but afterwards I am always distracted and busy with other things, namely schoolwork in preparation for the week. 
      This week my bible study group is in Isaiah 58-60 and I am learning a lot about the Sabbath. In the OT, the Sabbath was a sign of the covenant that God made with Israel on Mt. Sinai (Covenants in the OT came with signs - sign of the rainbow represented the covenant that God would never to flood the earth again, and the sign of circumcision represented the sign that Abraham was promised many descendants). In Exodus 20:8-11 is says to "remember the Sabbath and keep it holy..." and Exodus 31:12-17 says that whoever didn't obey the Sabbath would be put to death! Wow, that's harsh! In the NT, there are many places where the Sabbath is discussed that I have found to be helpful in my debate on whether or not this is an old law that should be followed today. My favorite is in Matthew 12:1-12 when the disciples were hungry and began picking the crop to eat. The Pharisees began to admonish them and Jesus for working on the Sabbath. Jesus says.."I desire mercy, not sacrifice. Jesus is the Lord of the Sabbath."and "If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? How much more valuable is a man than a sheep! Therefore, it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath." Jesus makes it very clear that the Sabbath is not about refraining from things, but about doing good! Another example is in John 5:10 and 9:14 where Jesus is accused, again by the Pharisees, for healing an invalid on the Sabbath. It amazes me that instead of rejoicing with the invalid for being healed, they accused him for carrying his mat on the Sabbath (yes, they thought carrying something as light as a mat was work). I think Jesus makes it clear that an opportunity to do good should never be ignored, even on the Sabbath. I am reminded that God takes no days off for our rest! 
      So, these verses may leave you with the question, like it did me, why was working on the Sabbath condemned in the OT, but yet in the NT Jesus and his disciples "work" on the Sabbath. What am I missing in the story? and What does that mean for me on Sundays today?
      Christ is the change. Hebrews 4 makes this very clear. "For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.
      We are no longer required to solely rest on the Sabbath since now we find our rest in Jesus. In Isaiah 58, they were disobeying God by not keeping the Sabbath holy, because then (before Christ) that was the commandment. Today, we break that commandment by not finding rest in Jesus.  The purpose is rest - physical, mental, and spiritual rest. Because of Christ, we cannot find rest apart from Him. So, I now believe that my rest doesn't have to be on Sundays (although some may find this is the best time). Instead of working on resting on Sundays, my focus is on resting in Christ, whenever or wherever that may be. The purpose is to do it!! So, don't beat yourself up over not doing anything on Sundays, but do beat yourself up if you are not resting in the promises and grace of Jesus Christ. Hebrews 4:2 says, "Since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it."
      What does resting in Christ look like? Many things. For me, its fully trusting in Him for my future and relinquishing any uncertainties I may have. It means seeking and fighting for time in His presence. It means enjoying being establish as a child of God. It means recognizing that Christ's work on the cross redeems me from all sin and is complete. It means resting through reading and memorizing and praying through His Word.
      Isaiah promises that by keeping the Sabbath they would find joy in the Lord, ride on the heights of the land, and feast on the inheritance of Jacob (Isaiah 58: 13-14).  IF WE OBEY AND REST IN HIM, he also promises this: "The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen you your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail (v. 10-11)."

Friday, April 15, 2011

Crush, Don't Flush

This week marks the close to the Presidential Scholars Program that I participated in this year. Tuesday we got together and presented our final group work. Our theme this year was "Improving the Community's Health" and I was a part of the "Environmental Issues" group. Our project was entitled "Crush, Don't Flush" and our aim was to educate the pharmacists in the Charleston area on the correct disposal of medication. 
Did you know??
*Up to 17% of medications prescribed in the U.S. are unused.
*Improper disposal could increase the risk of drug diversion. 
*Hormones, antibiotics, NSAIDs, and even drugs used to treat cancer have been detected in surface waters and sewage treatment plant waste in Charleston County.
*6 of SC Poison Control’s Top 10 Most Frequent Human Exposures were medications.

After doing a preliminary survey of community pharmacies in Charleston, we found that only 20% of the pharmacy staff knew the correct way to advise patients on this issue. We educated via informational brochures and by introducing this new material into the SCCP (SC College of Pharmacy) Community Practice Lab to teach the pharmacy students. We also aim to publish an article in a state-wide newsletter for pharmacists. Here is a link to the program details and our POSTER
Our group logo (isn't it cute?!)

So, if you have expired or unused pills around, it's time to spring clean! Here's how: 

Proper Medication Disposal
1.    Take the drugs out of the original containers.
2.    Crush up any tablet medications or dissolve them in water. (Liquid medications can be poured directly into the undesirable substance.
3.    Mix the drugs with an undesirable substance (kitty litter, sawdust, coffee grounds…).
4.    Put mixture into a sealed bag or container.
5.    Black out or remove labels containing personal information.
6.    Place the sealed mixture and original containers into the trash.

I earned a new pin for my white coat. 
I am not going to know what to do with myself on Monday nights now?!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...