Monthly Archives: June 2011

Notes From The Week

Happy Saturday friends!! How was everyone’s week? Mine was meh.

1. I’ve had a kink in my neck since Monday that is only getting worse. I’m fairly certain it has something to do with my sleeping arrangement, so I plan to go buy a really nice pillow today. Anyone have pillow suggestions? I’m currently using cheap IKEA ones. Anyways, my week has been filled with heat pads, Rub A535, and muscle relaxers. Hopefully a couple days off from sitting at a desk will help too.

2. UPS is holding my laptop hostage until Monday. If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I ordered a MacBook Pro last weekend after A LOT of agonizing over what kind of laptop to get. I’ve been obsessively tracking it online and it arrived in my city yesterday! But I screwed up in arranging the delivery, and because it arrived on a Friday, I have to wait three more agonizing days to get my paws on it.

3. I got pulled over at a police checkpoint yesterday for two infractions. Both of which I was able to convince the policeman were not worth a fine over. I didn’t have up to date registration stickers AND my vehicle inspection was expired. Getting the car switched back into my name from my mother’s was such a headache, I totally blanked on those things. The policeman understood. No tears required.

4. I can’t decide if I like this nail polish colour. I saw it on a girl at my physiotherapy clinic and loved it on her. But on me, it reminds me of when I used to paint my nails with white-out and colour them with highlighter when I got bored in middle school.

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If you look at the back of my hand closely, you will also notice my veins are in the shape of the Pi symbol. Even though I’m an arts grad, I’m a math nerd at heart.

Well that’s all my notes from the week! It’s yet another rainy day in the Maritimes. So plans will include puttering around the mall, making a slow cooker meal, and going to the movies. I’m also going to visit the hot yoga studio here. I had a commenter the other day who encouraged me to try Bikram. While I’ve done it before and wasn’t a huge fan, I think the posture series is the most doable with my arm situation. I need yoga in my life! I’m convinced stress is why I’ve been riddled with neck and stomach pain all week, unfortunately I have to wait for this darn kink to go away before I can actually start to de-stress with yoga!

Now how is that for a disjointed post? What are some of your notes from this past week? Plans for the weekend? As my gal Holly says, sharing is caring!

Sweet n’ Tart Rhubarb Muffins

It was not my original intention to share this recipe on the blog.

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I’m actually not the kind of person who follows a lot of recipes. Rather, I create things in the kitchen based on my cravings and nutritional needs. Sometimes I just can’t find a recipe that uses all the ingredients I want, or is healthy enough, or has the certain flavour or texture I’m after.

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I had a bunch of my mom’s home-grown rhubarb leftover after making the Strawberry Rhubarb Galettes last week. My original intention was to make sugary rhubarb muffins with a streusel topping. But then, my freezer ran out of Pumpkin Protein Cream Cheese Muffins, and I found myself missing my favourite mid-morning office snack.

Thus, these non-sugary, non-streusely muffins were born. I needed a healthy snack that would take me to lunchtime, not a dessert to give me a tummy ache.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup unflavoured soy protein powder**
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 10 stevia packets (equal to 6 tbsp + 2 tsp sugar)
  • 1/4 cup oil (I use coconut)
  • 1 cup flavoured yogurt (I used peach, it was a good choice)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups rhubarb, chopped into small pieces
  • milk, as needed

**Soy protein works as a flour replacement here, meaning the recipe will work just as well with 2 1/2 cups of flour. If you go the protein route, I find soy or pea powder work best in baked goods. Unless you’ve had success with whey before, I find a lot of brands turn baked goods hard and squeaky.

Directions:

Mix flour, protein powder, soda, and cinnamon together in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, mix together sugar, stevia, oil, yogurt, vanilla, and egg. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Slowly add milk until you have a thick batter, then stir in rhubarb. Bake for 25 minutes in a 350F oven.

Yields 30 mini muffins, or probably 12 regular muffins if you own a regular muffin pan. I (still) don’t.

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The end result was a surprisingly sweet spiced muffin, with a hit of tart rhubarb in every other bite. There may be no sugary streusel, but I now realize it’s a shame to mask the taste of rhubarb with sugar. I absolutely love these muffins just the way they are. A perfect example of a happy kitchen accident. It’s why I just had to share it with you!

How To Deal With An Injured Friend

One of my favourite bloggers, Heather, wrote a post not that long ago titled “How To Visit A New Mom.” I loved it because I’m now of the age where friends are having babies, but I’m still young enough that I don’t have that much experience with newborns. Or moreover, the mothers of newborns.

I thought it might be useful to write a post in a similar vein about my experience dealing with a serious injury. In other words, how to deal with an injured friend.

Keep in mind, everyone’s injury experience is unique and we all deal with it differently. These tips are based on how I deal with things.

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1. Don’t say “you’ll be better soon!”

I’ve gone over this before, but it’s worth noting again. For many people, injury means they will never technically be “better.” There will always be nagging pain, risk of re-injury, loss of mobility, etc. Some people may also see it as someone minimizing the seriousness of their injury by just assuming it will heal quickly.

 

2. Don’t ask if you can help, just do it automatically.

You know when you ask your mom if you can help with supper even when you have no intention of getting your butt off the couch? I get offers like that all the time. Chances are, if you ask me if I need help doing something, I’ll turn down the offer out of pride. What I appreciate more is when someone is attentive enough to notice I’m struggling, or could struggle with something, and automatically does it for me. There’s no verbal put-down, and the action is appreciated more than the offer.

 

3. Don’t assume I’m not in pain.

I experience pain so frequently now, it’s not even worth mentioning it when I do. So just because I haven’t mentioned feeling pain in a while, doesn’t mean I haven’t. This happens a lot when I am moving my arm around. It may look seamless to an outside eye, but typically any mobility I’ve gained recently comes with shooting pain each time it’s moved that far.

 

4. DO share your stories.

A lot of people are scared to share their own accounts of injury in fear of belittling the situation at hand. I however revel in hearing about the misery of other people’s injuries and pain. Even if it’s a sprained toe or broken finger, connecting with people who have also been injured makes me feel less alone in the whole thing.

 

5. Physiotherapy is not a spa.

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(my arm being pulled down with weight in physio yesterday)

It’s torture. If you know someone who is doing physio, do not take it lightly. It’s typically very painful and not enjoyable in the least. Physio is the only time I’ve felt 10/10 pain since first coming out of surgery. It’s not uncommon for me to scream or cry during a session. Not to mention, pain makes me feel really nauseous, so I leave feeling sick too.

 

6. Injury talk is not small talk.

Someone commented a while back saying it got irritating when people would immediately ask about her injury when they saw her. This happens to me all the time too. People I don’t see every day go “How is your arm doing?” as soon as they see me as a way of making easy conversation. Unfortunately, my arm is not doing well, so saying this is a total conversation killer and makes for an awkward moment. It also makes the injured person feel like they are the injury, instead of asking how they’re doing as a whole.

 

7. An injury isn’t just about losing the ability to do the things I used to.

It’s also about losing the ability to do things I could have done. My injury isn’t just about not being able to do yoga or play guitar anymore. It’s also mourning the loss of the things I wanted to do but now can’t: rock climb, join a rowing team, learn how to play violin. Never say, “Oh, it’s not like you were into kayaking anyway,” because you don’t know if it’s something I’m bitter about not being able to try.

 

How about you? Do you have anything to add to the list?

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