Friday, August 29, 2014

Web Crawlin'

Want to know what I was listening to this week?

Yeah.  Gotta stay grimey 'round here.  

Are you eating enough fruits and veggies every day?  I wasn't until I saw this.  But now I am.  A.M. green smoothies help. 

How excited are you about the Full House crew coming back?  Do you want to do a '90s TGIF squeal? 

Forget the ice bucket challenge. It's all about the rice bucket challenge

Need a marriage tip?  Plan something fun with your spouse.  Marriage can be fun if you make it that way. 

Now I'm off to a weekend of food, family, friends and shopping, to celebrating the un-official end of summer.  Even though I'm not in school anymore, I still feel a tinge of sadness when Labor Day rolls around.  Thank God, all the other childless grown-ups and I will have three more weeks to bask in the remains of summer.  Hoping to create enough warm memories to carry me through winter. 

Happy Weekend. 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Jewel Eats: Homemade Bean Burritos

Things I think about a lot:

My husband.

Eat-pray-love, right?  Sadly, I eat more than I pray. But I DO pray every time I eat though.  

I've written about the way I eat a few times on this blog (here and here).  I'm a member of the "everything in moderation" club and don't subscribe to the notion that giving up any one food group would improve my quality of life or my health.  If you have a chronic illness, chances are you've had to give up a few food groups at some point in time.  It's not really as fun, hip or cool as people make it out to be.  One of my food mottos:  Life is too short to not eat ice cream.  

My diet is simple: non-processed (85 percent of what I eat is made from scratch, not out of box or jar) and low-sodium.  If I'm following a recipe that calls for 1 teaspoon of salt in something, I usually cut that down by half.  Following a diet like this for the past six to seven years has made me really comfortable in the kitchen and increased my love for cooking and eating.  In my family, eating brings us together.

I talk a lot about how I eat, but I rarely show you what I actually eat.  Last night I made one of my favorite low-sodium, from scratch meals, from one of my cooking and homemaking idols, Martha Stewart.  

Burritos with Pinto Beans, Rice and Corn

I like making these because they are:
1.  Cheap.  You would probably buy this at Chipotle for $7.  I think all the ingredients cost $10 and I made way more than one burrito.

2.  Easy. The definition of a one-pan dish.  I cooked the entire filling in my beloved cast-iron.

3.  It's low sodium.  I added about a 1/4 teaspoon of salt to the onions that I cooked on low at the beginning of the meal.  The only other sodium is from the cheese, and whatever salt is left on the pinto beans after they are drained and rinsed.

4.  It tastes quadruple billion times better than the processed frozen kind that you buy at the store.  That said...

5.  You CAN freeze these!  This recipe can make up to 10 burritos. Ben and I are only two people. We love this meal, but we are NOT gonna eat 10 burritos in one sitting.  Or even two sittings.  Unless, there's money on the line.  But if not, I roll what's left up in plastic wrap and freeze them for future happy mealtimes.  

John Lennon was wrong.  Happiness is a warm [homemade] burrito.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Web Crawlin'

I joked this weekend then I would rather have another kidney transplant than have sinus congestion ever again.  I think I was mostly kidding.  But when every other inhale involves snot, your brain can be affected.  

Want to read some stuff I found on the interwebs last week before I used the rest of our Costco-size bag of toilet paper to clear out my sinus cavity? Of course you do!

Something I did not know about discrimination in organ donation

Thought-provoking piece about that ice-bucket challenge and Mike Brown. 

Lemons and vinegar. Never buy all-purpose cleaner again.  

Have the happiest of Mondays.

Monday, August 18, 2014

We Have Secrets

A few weeks ago, I was having one of my "I'm on my coffee break" phone chats with my sister Jocelyn.  The topic we wandered into:  the internet, and other people's relationships on the internet.  I'm semi-illiterate when it comes to social media.  I still maintain only one social media platform--Facebook--when now anyone can help themselves to a buffet of options for telling other people about their lives in a public domain.  Even Facebook is almost too much for me. Call me old-fashioned, but I miss the days when calling someone your friend meant that they were actually your friend.  You didn't have to add the disclaimer of "Well...they're my Facebook friend...aka I added them back because they added me but I would avoid this person like the black plague if I ever saw them at Target."   I AM that girl who has hidden from her "Facebook friends" behind a row of belts and discounted scarves. 

My sister informed me that now on Instagram they have special events called "Relationship Tuesday" and "Man Crush Monday" and "Relationship Goals."   I told her I just don't get it. Apparently she was with me, for once, in thinking that there are just some things about a relationship that just do not need to be on the internet.  

I think the same can be said for reality.  Before getting married, I wouldn't call myself a chronic oversharer as far as things that happened between Ben and me.  But I shared enough stuff to where I look back now and cringe just thinking about the words spilling out of my mouth without hesitation at the time.  It wasn't until recently, when Ben and I celebrated our first year of being married folks, that I realized just how much I valued the fact that we don't tell everyone everything.  

When you have a wedding, some people who went to the wedding and celebrated with you and drank with you and danced with you, seem to think that all of that carries over into the next chapter of life.  You know what I'm talking about.  People want to know when we're buying a house, when we're having kids, when we're going to eat dinner and when we're going to pet the cat.  Newlyweds are fascinating, because everyone knows that we're entering into uncharted territory and sometimes it's fun to watch a couple take those first wobbly steps into the unknown.  Hell, my new favorite show is Married at First Sight for that very reason.  It's like seeing the fireworks at Disney World for the first time.  

At times, I have felt the pressure to just come right out and tell everyone who asks about our 10-year plan.  But it can also be a little nerve-wrecking because everyone has an opinion for how to do things.  And I think that's why I'm glad that a few months into our marriage, Ben assured me that we don't have to tell anybody a damn thing if we don't want to.  It makes me feel kind of sneaky, too.  

In a world where couples have no shame about just tossing out the phrase "We're trying," so that everyone (or just me) can imagine them trying a new sex position every night until conception is achieved, I love that Ben and I keep some things for ourselves.  I love that when we say the words "SPOUSAL PRIVILEGE" we know that whatever was just said between us does not leave that room. 

A big reason that I love writing this blog is because I love sharing aspects of my life with you all. And I love seeing other people learn more about kidney disease  just by reading whatever ramblings I choose to write these days.  That said, it is satisfying to not have people all up in ALL parts of my business, all the time.  I guess being married and having people place bets one when you're going to procreate will teach you that.   

Friday, August 15, 2014

Web Crawlin'

It's Friday.  Thank you God.  So ready to relax and have a little bit...ok A LOT...of fun this weekend.  

Just some stuff that caught my eye on the web...

Remember when we talked about drinking water?  Here's how you know you need more.  

Drink a little, eat a little.  Can't wait to try out these eateries in my hometown.

And I can't wait to eat an entire batch of these.  Or give some to my sister for her birthday. 

Loved Bogey and Bacall.  And I loved this

And I loved these.  You're leavin' the angels in stitches now, Robin.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Looking and Asking

At the start of this year, I had a goal.  I knew that I couldn’t write just write about waiting for a kidney transplant forever, since I’d been fortunate enough to get mine.   I felt like I’d shared so much of my story about kidney transplants, living donors, waiting lists and the struggle, and how the struggle is oh so real for us organ recipients.   But one morning I woke up and thought, what about the others.

My dream in January was to get to know other transplant recipients and patients waiting for transplants.  My dream was to share their story of wrestling with the “struggle” here on this blog.  

It’s August, and—SURPRISE!—I haven’t had much luck in fulfilling that goal.  I haven’t made any progress, and not for lack of trying.  I’ve Google searched.  I’ve eavesdropped on other patients’ conversations at my transplant center to see if they would be right for what I’m trying to do.  I’ve reached out, but either my reaching has been in the wrong direction or—and this is a new revelation—I’m not reaching far enough.  

So this is me reaching out in another way.  And I’m a bit scared, because I don’t know what will be dropped into my hand, or whether I’m just reaching into another empty nest filled with broken twigs and pieces of grass.  But I’m hoping that I can rely on the vastness of the internet.  I’m hoping that it proves that there is more out there than Instagram pictures and cat videos. 

If you’re reading this and have received an organ transplant, I’d love to meet you.

If you’re reading this and are waiting on an organ transplant, I’d love to meet you.

If someone you love has received or is waiting on an organ transplant, I’d love to meet you.

If someone you like even a little bit has received or is waiting on an organ transplant, I’d love to meet you.

I’d love to meet all of you.  

So get at me.