Gaslight

Last Thursday Gordon and I went to Gaslight, a french restaurant, in the South End for dinner. Boston was having restaurant week, where a lot of restaurants in the city offer a few dishes for each course to create a menu for a fix price. It’s really an awesome idea since you can explore different parts of the city, different types of food, and fancier places without breaking the bank. This is actually only my second time doing it, the first being at Mama Maria in the North End with a bunch of friends in high school when we paid in a bunch of small bills and I counted wrong. ANYWAYS, on to Gaslight….!

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(I didn’t feel comfortable whipping out my phone at dinner to take photos of my food since it was such a lovely atmosphere so you’ll just have to take my word and trust that it looked really nice.)

The inside of the restaurant was adorable. They had subway tiles on the wall, candles lit everywhere, and big long curtains hanging around the doorways and windows. At first I was a little bummed we couldn’t sit on the patio outside but once we were at our table inside I wasn’t upset anymore.

Gordon had to pee when we got there and the waiter came over immediately and was talking to me as if I were dining alone. (Been there, done that, no shame). So, I told him “Oh, my date is here but he’s in the bathroom.” Then the waiter said, “Oh ok, let me know if you need an emergency cocktail” and walked away. I was so confused. And then I realized I should have said my boyfriend and not my date because this guy thought it was like a first date. At first I felt embarrassed but then realized it could be fun. So, I told him “Oh, yeah. I could definitely use one of those…” I obviously told Gordon but it was fun to pretend like we were on a first date!

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Back to the important stuff….

I started with a drink, obviously. I got “Le Jardin,” recommendation of our waiter, which had Gin, cucumber, elderflower, white grape juice. It was super tasty but a little bit sweeter than I usually go for….I wasn’t upset about it. Gordon got “Deveraux,” which had Bourbon, elderflower, lemon, bubbles. Kid loves his bourbon, but his drink was also sweet. I know because I tasted it and almost thought I liked Bourbon for a second.

For our first course I got the Arugula & Boucheron Salad (hazelnuts, lemon thyme honey, vinaigrette frambroise) which was so good. Gordon got the Goat Cheese Beignets (olive tapenade & roasted tomato confit) which I obviously stole a bite of and was jealous that he ordered cheese for an appetizer when I had arugula in front of me.

We both got the “Parisian Gnocchi” (pulled duck confit, sweet corn, oyster mushrooms, lemon tarragon pistou) for our meals. At this point I started to feel really full but also bullied Gordon into getting some wine for us and wasn’t ready to quit. I polished of my plate, like a champ, and enjoyed every single bite.

For dessert we split the “Dark Chocolate Truffle Cake” and the “Lemon Souflé Glacé.” The chocolate cake rocked my world. It was dark and soft and delicious. I don’t know if it was the wine I had before we left but I expected the Lemon dessert to be cake. I was a little confused when they brought out a pudding, but I still ate it and enjoyed it. And now am realizing that it was never a cake and I just drink too much wine….. #noregrets.

I absolutely loved Gaslight! It had a great atmosphere, service, and most importantly, food. I can’t wait to go back!

I’m heading down to the Cape for a fundraiser and then moving tomorrow. Happy Monday!

Things I’m loving Friday #1

A few blogs I read (the only two blogs I read) do a “Things I’m loving Friday” post. Each Friday they share things that they are loving, as simple as that. They are hands down my favorite thing to read so I figured I would try and bring it on over to ScoopingRN!

Salt and Vinegar Almonds

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Confession: I bought these at Christmas Tree Shop. I used to hate that place but was wandering through with my mom and these caught my eye. When I was younger I HATED salt and vinegar anything with a passion but have found myself loving it recently. When I saw these I didn’t think twice about throwing them in my cart and giving them a shot. They are so so so delicious. They taste like salt and vinegar chips but are almonds so I get to pretend I’m being healthy.

Maine Beer Co.

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This beer has been sitting in my fridge for a solid month now. It was a limited batch that I nabbed at the brewery in Maine and just haven’t had the heart to drink it just to feel so sad when it is gone. But, I’m moving next week and figured I should drink it so someone didn’t have to transport it for me (valid excuse to crack a beer at 5 o’clock…right?). Thankfully I have another trip to Maine on the horizon and I can’t wait to stop by their tasting room again.

Guy annoying his girlfriend at Ikea

Gordon sent me this video right before I was walking into an interview and it absolutely slayed me. Pure gold.

Custom Corn Hole Set

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My sister Jenny had a friend make this custom corn hole set for the fundraiser next week for my Cousin’s scholarship fund. How awesome are these? I need them.

Liquor store signs on the way home from work 

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I pass this liquor store on my way to and from work. I’ve actually never been inside because I’ve heard it’s mad sketchy but was told to check out their signs. They only change the sign once a month but oh, boy, is it a treat when they do. (I can’t figure out how to make the pictures bigger…..new blogger fail. Sign 1: Jazz Hands, All dance battles must be scheduled in advance. Sign 2: No Whammys, No Whammys, No shirt no service, No underwear call me.)

Hope you all have a nice weekend! I’m off to Country Fest! 🙂

The Night Shift

I just got done working 6 out of 7 nights and I have decided I would not wish that upon my worse enemy. Working the night shift is an experience like no other and no one realllllly understands it until they stay up all night (sober). When I’m starting a stretch of nights I try and nap for a few hours in the afternoon before my first one. Sometimes it works, sometimes I just lay awake in my bed with my pjs on in the middle of the afternoon feeling like a weirdo.

I worked as a nursing assistant for a few years before I became a nurse so I had a taste of what an overnight felt like. However, I was per diem then so I only worked one or maybe two nights in a row. But as a nurse I can be on nights for a few weeks at a time and work up to 4 in a row. This stretch I just had was 3 on, 1 off, 3 on.

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All things have their pros and cons so let’s run through those of the night shift.

CONS:

  • You’re tired all the time and feel like crap: The night shift is not kind to your body. Our bodies know when the right time to eat, sleep and poop is and all rules go out the window when 7p-7a rolls around. I’ve learned to just try and sleep as much as I can. Thankfully I live close to work so I’m home by 8am. I either scarf breakfast and hop into bed right away or shower and eat breakfast on my couch to decompress for a little bit which gets me in bed by 9. Usually I have to get up to pee around noon but am able to fall back asleep if I don’t fall over on my way to the bathroom (it’s happened). Then if I’m good, I get up around 330 and try to get a walk or a jog in. If I’m having a rough time, I sleep until 5 and then get up, shower and head to work again. If it’s my day off, I try to be out of bed by 130 to jump start getting on a regular schedule. I never really understood how important sleep was and how much lack of sleep effected my  body until I started crushing nights. I ALWAYS feel nauseous and my legs ALWAYS feel like they are going to fall off. Not to mention, I’m always a little cranky.
  • People think the night shift = hanging out: It’s pretty common for people to tell me “you’re job isn’t that hard, you only work 3 shifts a week.” First off, that’s just not true. I was 40hours so it’s rare that I only work 3 shifts a week. Also, my shifts are never only 12 hours. I leave my house an hour before my shift starts to get there early enough to get a comprehensive report on my patient. And I wait a half hour after the end of my shift to make sure the nurses picking up my patients don’t have questions or need help. This doesn’t even factor in emergencies, patient’s crying or a code brown happening when I’m trying to leave. Without fail my 12 hour shift really means a 14 hour day. People also assume patients are sleeping during the night so that the night shift is just medicating them, tucking them in, and hanging out. It is very rare that all of my patients are sleeping all night. And the truth is, if they’re really sick, I’m in their room all night checking vitals, hanging meds, doing my assessment……even if they are sleeping.
  • Eating healthy is impossible: When you’re body is falling apart from no sleep, eating normally, never mind healthy, is a challenge. I always have to eat when I get home after a night shift otherwise I wake up starving and I don’t like to choose between eating and sleeping. I try to eat before I go in so I can get through the first couple of hours. I try and pack a sandwich, salad, leftovers, fruit, nuts and yogurt but those don’t always get eaten. When I’m tired at work, I’m guilty of snacking to try and stay awake.
  • You have no friends: When you work all night, and sleep all day, you have no friends. It is impossible to have a social life because no one is around the hang out at 9am after work. It’s really difficult for me when working nights to keep in touch with even my mom and Gordon. Texting helps but if they are busy when I call on my way into work I just don’t talk to them for that day. Thankfully the people I work with have become really good friends who make being a work enjoyable.

PROS:

  • Making bank: We get differentials which means we make a few more bucks an hour when working nights, evenings or weekends. It doesn’t seem like much at first but in the end it really adds up.
  • Less people around: The floor is always quieter at night. Patients aren’t going for as many procedures, PT and OT aren’t there, there are few doctors and nurses and visitors. This is really nice because it gives me more time to focus on my patient with fewer distractions.
  • More quality time with patients and coworkers: With less distractions and tasks to get done overnight, I feel like I have more time to take a seat and just talk to my patient which is really important to me. I always try to be a good listener and spend all my free time at work getting to know my patients better and support them but I find that the night shift makes that easier. I also have more time to get to know my coworkers better which was really helpful as a new nurse.
  • Mimosas: Post work omelets and mimosas…..nothing better.  

Ben and Jerry’s Original Core Flavors Reviews

Last year Ben & Jerry’s released their new core flavors. My friend Shannon and I can crush pints like nobody’s business and love to see a new flavor in the freezer. We weren’t living near each other at the time so I wrote reviews of the different flavors for her so we could compare on thoughts. This morning I was thinking that they would be a perfect addition to the blog. Writing? Ice cream? Writing about ice cream? Sign me up!! The reviews are old but I still hope you enjoy them. I also hope they will come out with some more new flavors so I can write some more reviews!

Salted Caramel Core

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Sweet cream ice cream is smooth and creamy – good use of a classic flavor. Blonde brownies are perfectly chewy and soft but inconsistently spread throughout the pint, small, and lacking. The core is a nice balance of salt and sugar and there is a nice extra blob when you take the lid off. However, they still need to work on getting a solid core…not one the gets skinny and makes me nervous it’s going to disappear in the middle. Not typically a vanilla/blonde fan but have to give credit where it’s due. Overall, a solid 8.5/10.

Hazed & Confused Core

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Here we go again….core flavor 2 of 4. Honestly, the idea of frozen Nutella between two flavors of ice cream sounded like my idea of heaven. However, I found this core to be overwhelmingly fudgey, thick and heavy. It was solid and continuous, but it felt like a chore trying to consume it and I was avoiding it as I made my way through the pint. I will never be able to say enough good things about B&Js chocolate or their brilliant use of the perfect chocolate chip. This was my first experience with hazelnut ice cream but it did nothing for me….I’m also inclined to blame the core for overpowering it, though. I usually take pride in being able to polish off a pint but I need to confess I didn’t even finish this one. That might be due to the large BBQ dinner I had though… Not a terrible flavor, but nothing to write home about. 7/10….includes the 0.5 bonus points for being enjoyed while watching Walking Dead. Hey, Daryl!

Peanut butter fudge core

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I’ve been holding out for this flavor because I knew it would be my favorite. What’s not to love about milk chocolate peanut butter cups sprinkled throughout smooth flavors divided by a perfectly balanced sweet and salty core? Nothing. It’s all to love. Unlike the other flavors, the ratio of ingredients in this pint were spot on. The core was not overwhelming at all and added a nice additional “extra” to this ice cream. The peanut butter cups were a manageable one-bite size and soft so I didn’t feel like I was going to break a tooth. The peanut butter flavoring was natural and you already know how I feel about B&J’s chocolate. This flavor is so good I almost forgot I have a nursing exam from hell tomorrow and that Norovirus is spreading through my apartment. The boys stole my heart with this one. 10/10.

* Of note: There is a 4th core flavor, something with jam in it… I think I tried it, and I think it was pretty good. But ice cream with fruit in it is not blog-worthy. I also just remembered that the cookie cores are out now too. Now, THOSE are blog worthy flavors.

Stitch Fix #1

I’m a shopper. I know I am. I love new clothes, new accessories, new anything. But sometimes it can be frustrating to sift through racks or wander around the mall looking for something that catches my eye. I had heard about Stitch Fix a while ago through blogs and girls at work but had never tried it. Then, my sister Kerry told me she did it. She was telling me about what she got in her box and how much she loved it so I decided to give it a go.

For those of you who don’t know about Stitch fix, it’s a company that has personal stylists. These stylists have you fill out a style profile and questionnaire to get started. These questions include simple things, like your size, and also ask what types of clothing you like. After they have an idea of the clothes and accessories you wear, they put together a “fix” for you. Your fix includes 5 items which they send right to your door. You can try them on at home and send back what you don’t want and keep what you love.

I took Kerry’s advice and spent some time building up my Style Pintrest board, being sure to pin things I like and would actually wear. I also was sure to specify that I did not want accessories since I am particular and already have so many. Finally I told them I am a nurse and wear scrubs to work so I only wanted to be sent casual and date night clothing. I heard to be VERY specific when telling your stylist about you and what you like to ensure you receive items you like.

Let’s get to it….(I apologize for these photos, I woke up early after a night shift to open my box because I was so excited! Also, shout out to my roomie Monica for letting my use her full length mirror all the time.)

#1 Market&Spruce Cargo Jacket, #2 Market&Spruce Boyfriend tank

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My stylist was spot on with this jacket. I realized after the fact that I had pinned A TON of these so it makes sense they sent it. I was a little bummed because I had just ordered a very similar jacket from J. Crew so I was conflicted about whether I should keep it or not. The tank top was long, almost too long, but very soft and comfortable. I was on the fence about this one because I don’t think it is something I would have picked out in the store but I was totally diggin’ it while trying it on.

#3 Le Lis Back Panel Top, #4 Just Black Boyfriend Jeans

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I really liked this top but felt a little a little guilty when I opened it just because I already have so many like it. But once I put it on I couldn’t take it off never mind think about sending it back. I loved the colors and was obsessed with the back paneling. On to the jeans… I LOVE THESE JEANS. I bought my first pair of boyfriend jeans about two years ago from Francesca’s and loved them. However they have shrunk (I refuse to believe I grew) and just don’t fit quite as well anymore (I think I’m going to vomit when I button them). Anywho……. when I saw these jeans in my box my first thought was “Crap. What a waste, these totally aren’t going t fit.” But then I put them on and my heart did backflips. They looked adorable cuffed and I was trying them on with sandals, sneaks and booties and couldn’t get enough! I loved the shading and that they were distressed but didn’t have gaping holes in them, just some character.

#5 Renee C Maxi Dress

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This was the toughest call in the box. I’ve been looking for a Maxi dress ever since they have been in stores and became a trend. Every one I tried on just looked so weird on me. I was still undecided at first when I put this on. I liked the neck line and the pattern. Something I hadn’t tried on before was a maxi with a slit, and this one had a small one on the side which I really liked. I also sent a picture of this dress to my boyfriend and he said I looked beautiful so you can bet I kept it.

DECISIONS: I kept everything! Stitch fix gives you 20% off your purchase if you keep everything. I knew I wanted to keep the jeans and the lace panel top. The boyfriend tank was comfy and simple and I knew it would be a good addition to my wardrobe. The dress was very different from anything I had in my closet so I thought it would be fun to keep. So, the only thing left to decide on was the jacket. I did out the math and the difference between keeping it and getting the discount, or sending it back and keeping everything else, was $10. I thought to myself, “Would I pay $10 for this jacket?” The answer was yes and it has been given a good home on the hook by my front door.

Stitch Fix also sends you style cards which I think is SO smart. It gives you ideas of two different looks you can obtain from each piece. This makes each item more appealing and accessible. (And just makes me want all the other clothes on shoes on the card).

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I need to find that black dress paired with the jacket….

Overall I would definitely say Stitch Fix is worth a shot. The clothes seem high quality, I definitely like all them, and it was fun to see different brands than I normally buy. I think it would be too expensive to do every month and the impulse shopper in my would come out and be ugly. But I’m thinking it would be a fun thing to do every season so I’m trying to hold off until Fall to order another fix!

When you sign up for Stitch Fix you pay $20, that money then becomes a credit towards anything you keep in your first fix. You also get a credit if you refer someone and they schedule a fix. Do yourself a favor and your girl a solid and check it out!

The First Post

I’m doing it. I’m putting my big girl pants on and starting a blog.

Writing has always been a part of my life, and one that has taken a seat on the back burner for a while now. At first it was something I used as an outlet and through that my love for writing grew. However, nursing school isn’t the most creative and relaxing environment, so I haven’t been writing for a few years.  But now, a year and a half out of school with my two feet (mostly) on the ground, I’ve decided it’s time to get back to doing something I love.

I read somewhere it is important to have a “direction” or a theme for your blog. I would want this to be a healthy living blog but honestly, I ate an egg Mcmuffin and showered as soon as I woke up so I had an excuse not to go to the gym so I don’t think we’re there yet. So I guess for now this will be a space where a tired nurse shares about the struggles of being healthy, her love for jeans and necklaces, and everything else in-between.

This is my first blog and my first time sharing any of my writing. So please, be patient and kind.