Friday Favorites - The Last One

Having an unexpected 17 hours in a hospital (and in effect, a day off from work) actually made this week seem to fly by.

If you haven't yet, take a peek at my Untold Snippets of the E.R., a humorous re-telling of 17 hours of life that Lucas and I will never get back because we spent it in the dungeon that is Hartford Hospital.

In other news, I've made a decision about my Friday Favorite's posts. I think I'm going to be ending this series after this week and creating a Monthly Favorites instead. My weeks are so busy and go by so quickly that sometimes I feel like I'm scrapping together favorites of the week, and I don't want to do that! I want to give only the most interesting and useful tidbits. So from here on out, stay tuned for a Monthly Favorites at the end of each month, followed by a goals re-cap and new goals for the coming month.

But here we go, one last Friday!

01) Nice nurses are definitely up there in my favorites for this week. It's crazy how a gentle personality in such a harsh environment can make an experience much more pleasant (or as pleasant as possible, given the circumstances).

02) I've said it before and I'll say it again - when my coworkers bring me iced coffee, they bring me happiness in a plastic cup. I appreciate so much these unexpected Friday morning treats.

03) This BB cream from Maybelline is the best drugstore face make-up I've tried in a long, long time. Goodbye Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer, with your ridiculous price tag. This is all I need and it blends in like a dream with just your fingers. Maybe she's born with it, maybe it's $6.79 at Target.

04) Au Bon Pain Cafe is located in the main entrance to Hartford Hospital and they might have the best damn asiago bagel you will ever try.

05) I dug deep into blog land this week and discovered the most tear-jerking love story (part 1 and part 2) from one of my all time fav bloggers, Bonnie. Her writing style is beautiful, authentic, and moving.

06) I was in the waiting room of yet another doctor's office yesterday when I found this very long (but truly fascinating) article on Buzzfeed about the cult-brand Glossier. If you don't know anything about this brand, give the article a skim. Their marketing strategy is just mesmerizing to me - I'm totally convinced I need to own that Gen G matte lip balm.

07) A couple of throwback jams. I played Get Up by Ciara and Lose My Breath by Destiny's Child in Spin class yesterday and my Spinners were loving it! Sometimes I stress myself out looking for the best and newest music. It's always a good idea to take a look back at the old favs.

How was your week?
Tell me about the best bagel you've ever eaten.
What's your go-to throwback jam?

Leave a comment, it means so much for me to actively engage with anyone awesome enough to start a conversation on this blog!

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Untold Snippets of the E.R.

Viewer discretion is advised. 
These are the untold snippets of the E.R.

Drifting off to sleep next to L. Cozy, comfy, and relaxed. Alarm set for 3:48am the next morning, since I have to be at work for 5:00. A little bit concerned that I'm not going to get enough sleep but mehhhh, oh well. Goodnight!

L LEAPS out of bed and starts vomiting violently. All over the floor. All over the sink. All over the toilet. I sit up in bed clutching my stuffed cat like a child, helpless and confused as vomit literally goes everywhere.

We are in L's mother's brand new convertible BMW as she speeds aggressively down the freeway. L clutches several plastic grocery bags in fear that the vomiting may erupt once more. L's mother, Kathy, glances nervously at her BMW's beautiful brown leather interior.

I approach the entrance to the hospital with trepidation... I literally cannot handle blood in any amount. L holds his stomach, bent over double. The waiting room looks full of sick, injured, and sleep deprived people. We approach the check-in area.

A seven hour wait is what we've been told. We kind of laugh, but then realize that they aren't kidding. We settle into some seats and silently stare ahead of us as a Puerto Rican family cusses in Spanglish in the seats nearby.

L has had enough waiting. After a couple of rounds of hyperventilation, he claims that his breathing has become labored. We go back up to the nurses station, where she checks his vitals again. They are "rock solid". He gives her a dirty look and we take a seat once more.

L sends Kathy home because he doesn't need two caregivers and apparently she's pretty awful when she doesn't get enough sleep. She protests for about 2 seconds, then leaves us alone to fend for ourselves in the E.R.

We register in a hallway and are brought to another hallway where L is given a hospital bed to climb into because all of the rooms are at capacity. It's "one of those nights".

We are freezing cold, literally shivering. Between the two of us, we are somehow able to procure about eight hospital blankets from nice nurses.

We're still in the hallway. The woman in the room next to us is crying and moaning. L and I give each other super uncomfortable sideways glances, then ask a nice nurse to move us to a different part of the hall.

A doctor comes to take L's bloodwork and gives him an IV. I have a full blown meltdown. I am not the one getting stuck with a needle, but seeing them and knowing they are going into someone's skin triggers a psychotic episode. I hyperventilate and sob uncontrollably, after which L snaps at me to go take a walk and get some fresh air.

I find a hospital cafe. I order what will soon become the best asiago bagel I have EVER eaten. Then I get lost on my way back to L.

We wait

We wait

We wait

We are moved to a spacious room. L is sleeping like an infant, hooked up to some serious tranquilizers painkillers, nestled underneath our eight blankets. I'm contorted like a cat in a plastic chair, trembling. I finally decide, enough of this shit, and climb into the narrow hospital bed with L. It's a good thing we both still fit in kid's sizes.

L is finally seen for an ultrasound of his stomach. I sit in a different waiting room with my blanket, reading The Husband's Secret and listening to two older women talk about the fairy pools in Scotland. I make a mental note to visit them before I die.

L has me steal several pairs of size small latex medical gloves for no discernible reason.

We are finally, finally, finally free. L is sent away with a work note, a heavy duty pain pill prescription, a fancy hospital bracelet, and no idea what's actually wrong with him. Three cheers for modern medicine! All the good doctor can tell us is that his liver levels are a little bit off and to get some new blood work done in a few days. Kathy picks us up in her BMW convertible - this time the top is down. The wind whips my dirty, matted hair into my face and eyes as the sun shines down upon us.

We survived 17 hours in the E.R. 

* I know that this situation could have been much more serious and that we were very lucky with the outcome. My nature is to try to find interest + humor in even the most non-humorous situations, and that's what we did. 
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Friday Favorites - Decisions, decisions

My manager mentioned yesterday that this week has flown by for her. I feel the COMPLETE opposite. I feel like this week has dredged through the mud and back, that I have lived a thousand lives in seven days, that I have been running a non-stop engine for 2 straight weeks.

Here are some favorite little trinkets that I have gathered in this week's long journey.

01) This informative article claims that getting six hours of sleep is as bad as getting no sleep at all. This is especially disturbing since I get about 5 and a half hours of sleep each night. Uh oh.

02) I saved $6 on make-up at CVS this week using coupons. I have honestly never used coupons before. I felt like a powerful sorceress. One of my good friends is a certified crazy coupon lady, and she's hopefully going to give us all a couponing workshop in the near future (over wine, of course).

03) This little gem of a song is so soft and lovely.

04) I finally decided to try what one of my favorite bloggers (The Skinny Confidential) claims is the best drugstore mascara ever. I am really into it right now. The primer contributes to a curl that actually holds in place all day long. And I got it on sale $3.12!!!

05) Podcasts have pretty much consumed my life, I even listened to one while I was tanning outside yesterday. I will definitely have to do a blog post on my favorite podcasts soon! But two other things I've been loving are Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert and The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty. I'm trying as hard as I can to finish both of these by the end of the month.

06) Breakfasts like this.

07) Putting my big girl pants on/being a responsible adult human and scheduling two doctors appointments, setting up one payment plan for an ambulance bill, and setting up a phone interview for a potential job offer. Which brings me to...

Decisions, decisions...

I am pretty fed up with working at the gym. The lack of responsibilities, being treated like a child, mediocre pay, and false promises from corporate all add up after a year and 9 months of working here. At the same time, the flexibility with hours is very convenient. 

I set up a phone interview for a position of "Patient Service Specialist" at a physical therapy clinic. This would be a really good position for me, if I was offered it - I'd get office experience in a medical setting, I'm really interested in physical therapy, and it's a full time position. I'm not sure of the pay, so that would obviously make a huge difference. 

The only problem is the hours. The office is open from 9am - 7pm. In my current position, I get out of work at 1pm. Coming this September, I'm scheduled to be teaching several dance classes throughout the week starting at 6pm. 

So what should I do if I'm offered this position? Should I give up my passion and side hustle of dance teaching to pursue a real full-time job with benefits and a 401k? Would this destroy my soul?

If you have any thoughts, please just let me know what you think/what you might do. 

Leave a comment, it means so much for me to actively engage with anyone awesome enough to start a conversation on this blog!

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Happy Friday! 

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College Series: 10 mistakes you probably did (or will) make your
freshmen year

This installment of my college series brings us to the learning curve of freshmen year. Everyone makes mistakes - these are just 10 (of many) that I encountered my freshman year. As you'll see, I didn't learn my lesson right away. Sometimes it takes awhile - like three years - for a lesson to be learned!

1. Buying books from the bookstore.
I'm not trying to judge here, but are you really planning on highlighting that brand new textbook? If not, save $400 and rent it for $50.

2. Calling your parents every night.

Again, I'm not judging. But having a pre-planned phone conversation every night at 10pm really limits you in terms of spontaneous adventures with new friends.

3. Only hanging out with friends in your dorm.

No matter how small your school is, there are at LEAST a thousand undergrads for you to get to know. Don't limit yourself by staying inside your small, comforting dorm bubble.

4. Forgetting the importance of cleaning supplies. 

The most invaluable thing you can bring to your college dorm is a bucket full of Lysol, dust wipes, and one of those tiny handheld dustpans. This is because you will likely be the only one in your dorm smart enough to think of this, and your space will be spotless and ant-free (take it from me).

5. Being too uptight. 

College isn't for the faint of heart. Yes, you will learn a ton academically. Just as important (or even more so) are those social lessons that you'll carry with you through your whole life. So get out of your comfort zone and start talking to strangers.

6. Getting WAY too loose. 

College is a vast well of pure freedom. There may be campus security and RA's to get around, but college freshman are well known for being very sneaky. I'm talking rigging a pulley system to pull a 12-pack of beer from the side of a dorm building up through a second story window kind of sneaky. Just be careful not to get too loose, too quick. It's no fun waking up in a puddle of vodka + Red Gatorade that may or may not have once been in your stomach.

7. Mixing your alcohols (!!!!!)

So, I may have made this mistake every single time I went out, through all four years of college. At least I've finally learned it by 23 years old. If you're going to drink, you're probably going to be pressured to drink a lot, and a lot of different things. If you want to save yourself a feeling similar to death the next morning, stick to one kind of alcohol. Tequila Tuesdays. Wine Wednesdays. You get the idea.

8. Not taking advantage of free events/free stuff.

Especially at the beginning and end of the year, there are usually a lot of free actitivites for college students. Outdoor concerts, carnivals, festivals, comedy nights... the works. Take advantage of these fun, FREE things while you can because student debt is four short years away and no one is going to be throwing you an Autumn Fest for free in the real world. You will never be too cool for free stuff.

9. COMPLETELY letting yourself go. 

I will brag for a second and say that my college dining hall was ranked one of the top 3 in the country. It was buffet-style gourmet food. It was fucking unreal. When you have a meal plan like this, you have to exercise your strongest willpower and self control. Like, maybe go crazy the first week, but then dial it back. Find the healthiest options, go wild at the salad bar, always get grilled chicken.

10. Getting locked out of your room. 

This happened to me SO MANY TIMES (and not just my freshman year...). I am an easily distracted, forgetful person who always confidently skipped out of my dorm without my room keys. It definitely helps to have your roomate, RA, and hall supervisors phone numbers on hand - it only took me like three years to learn this.

I don't usually like to generalize, but if you're an old fart and out of college like me, I feel like there are some points here we can all relate to! Freshman year is an unbelievable learning experience and I really believe that the best way to learn is through making mistakes.

What are some mistakes you learned from your freshman year? 

Leave a comment, it means so much for me to actively engage with anyone awesome enough to start a conversation on this blog!

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Barre can be intimidating - Here's what to expect!

I always used to be a creature of habit with my fitness routine. Twenty minutes on the elliptical and 20-30 minutes of resistance training was usually about as adventurous as I got. Then we introduced Spinning at the gym I work at and I got tossed into my first Spin class. Fast forward a year later and I decided to get Spinning certified so that I could teach my own classes.

Since then I've decided to make it my mission to try as many different kinds of fitness classes as I can. So far I've ventured into Body Pump, Zumba, and Body Flow. In the future, I hope to try aerial yoga, Bikram, and pole dancing, just to name a few! 

Here are some things I noticed in my first barre class, and what you might expect in yours, too.

+ YOU MUST WEAR SOCKS. My mom and I did not realize this and showed up in bare feet. Way to blow our cover of being totally new and confused. So we forked over $12 each for fancy grippy barre socks and headed on our merry way.

+ There are different barre heights. My mom didn't realize this at first and when we went to stretch our legs on the barre, she damn near pulled her leg out of its socket. Stand at the barre height where you can comfortably lift your leg onto the barre.

+ It's pretty intimidating! All of those soccer moms were in way better shape than me in their lululemon leggings and dri-fit strappy tank tops. The instructor herself was also RIPPED AS HELL. So I guess if this isn't motivation to take more barre classes, I don't know what is.

+ We took a 30 minute long sampler for this first barre class, so the instructor squeezed so much into that half hour. We began with some dynamic stretching, leg and balance work, followed by modified plies and releves. I know this because I'm a dance teacher, but I don't know if the average person is capable of performing this alignment correctly on the first try! Definitely watch the instructor closely and try to match your hips and body facing with hers. 

+ The weights section is HARD. Unless you've been doing this for awhile, 2 lb. weights are just fine to absolutely burn the living hell out of your upper body muscles. Two pound weights certainly don't feel like 2 lbs. after they've been lifted over your head at a fast pace for three straight minutes. 

+ Smaller movements (and more of them) are definitely the theme of barre. As someone who has taken ballet, Yoga and Pilates, I really enjoyed this weird fusion of all three.

+ It requires a lot of random equipment. A mat, a resistance band, two sets of weights, a small resistance ball, and a Yoga strap are just some of the accessories we played around with. Which can actually be a pain in the ass to gather and put away if you have somewhere to be after class!

So, overall... 

I really enjoyed Barre! I would definitely recommend this class if you want to try something new and don't mind being a little bit confused and overwhelmed at the beginning. The results honestly speak for themselves, Barre instructors are some of the most toned people I've ever met.

Have you ever tried Barre? 
What's your favorite specialty fitness class? 
Leave a comment, it means so much for me to actively engage with anyone awesome enough to visit my little 'ol blog! 

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Danielle Sinsigalli. Powered by Blogger.

afloat on a full sea.