Tuesday, January 6, 2015

New Healthy Food Finds

       Happy New Year! I hope you all had a great holiday. I was on call the night before New Years Eve, and I was so tired that I cancelled my plans for the night and was sound asleep by 10 pm. Oh well. Anyway, since it is a new year, I decided that I would share some of my new healthy, convenient food finds. I was delusional in thinking that I would have a lot of free time this year to cook healthy food and end my reliance on convenience food and takeout. As a resident with a baby, I have now accepted that that is just not going to happen. Maybe in two years when my residency is finished. I can dream.
     So, what I can do, is try to do my best to eat healthy in the laziest, most convenient way possible. Here are some of my new favorites:

Trader Joes Crunchy Salted Peanut Butter with Flax and Chia Seeds: This tastes great if you love chunky peanut butter, and it has an added dose of fiber, protein, antioxidants, and omega-3's. The calories are slightly less than regular peanut butter (not by a lot) which is always an added bonus.


Trader Joes Greek Yogurt Spinach and Kale Dip: This tastes just like spinach dip but without all of the extra fat and calories. The greek yogurt gives it an extra boost of protein and the spinach and kale add fiber and vitamins. It has 30 calories, 2.5 grams of fat, 1 gram of protein, 1 gram of fiber, and only 2 carbs per serving! I love to eat this with baked tortilla chips that I also buy at Trader Joes (obviously my favorite place).

Garden Lites Zucchini Marinara and Zucchini Portabello: Garden Lites has been coming out with amazing new products this year. I have been loving zucchini pasta (I think it is even better than spaghetti squash), but I have also been way too lazy to use the Veggetti (even though it is really easy) to make it very often. This solves that problem. It is zucchini pasta with marinara sauce. You can buy it with or without portabello mushrooms. I add some crushed red pepper and either goat cheese or shaved parmesan and it is so easy and convenient.

Trader Joes Maple Agave Syrup Blend: I used to be all about the low calorie sugar free syrup, but this syrup is amazing. While it obviously has higher calories than the sugar free variety, maple syrup actually has a lot of antioxidants, and agave does not spike blood sugars as much as other sweeteners. Also, a little bit of this syrup goes a LONG way flavor wise. I tend to use lot less of it than other types of syrups.

Blueprint Cold Pressed Kale Apple Lemon Juice: I know green juices are in vogue these days, and while I would love to be able to drink a juice made entirely of greens, I need fruit in mine to sweeten it up and decrease the bitterness.  Blueprint juices are now available at Fairway and Whole Foods (instead of just through their website), and this juice is sweet, delicious, and has only 100 calories. It really hides the taste of the kale well. I have tried many different brands of green juices and struggled to drink many of them. I tend to inhale this entire bottle in about 5 minutes. I highly recommend it!

Hope you like all of these new finds. I know I promise to post more every time I do post and am failing miserably, but I will try harder!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Icelandic vs. Greek Yogurt

     I have loved Greek yogurt since it became popular a few years ago. It has more protein, less sugar, and definitely tastes better than regular, runny yogurt in my opinion. My NEWEST discovery, however, is icelandic yogurt. It is very similar to Greek yogurt, but is a little bit thicker, with less sugar, and more protein per container (at least for the vanilla flavor, which is my favorite). The brand I like is called Siggi's, and unlike many of the Greek varieties out there, there are no artificial sweeteners used in the flavored varieties. Instead, agave nectar (a low glycemic natural sweetener) is used. So, if you are a Greek yogurt lover, you may want to give icelandic yogurt a try.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Baby Style!

      When I found out that Charlotte was a girl, I could not wait to dress her. I am a girly-girl and knew that my child's wardrobe would involve lots of pink, lots of frills, and many bows. Whether she will hate me for it later.....that's another story.
      A lot of people have been asking me where I buy Charlotte's clothes, so I wanted to share my favorite places to shop for her and my favorite brands.

1.) Headbands/Bows: I buy ALMOST all of Charlotte's headbands on Etsy......I went to the site and googled "baby headbands," and then proceeded to spend hours going through the thousands upon thousands of headbands from different shops on the site. There are so many unique choices and colors available, but the best part, is that if you have a particular design or idea in mind, or if you have a picture of a specific outfit and you want a headband/bow to match, many of the shop owners will work with you to create and then make your vision.


2.) Layette: I got my layette at a store called Lester's. They have a few locations (Long Island, Brooklyn, and NYC), and have the biggest selection of onesies, stretchies, baby towels, burp cloths, baby sweaters, baby blankets, and anything and everything that goes into a layette that I have seen. I picked mine out with my mom and grandma, and we went into a few other stores before agreeing that this was definitely the place. Additionally, the people who helped us there were so sweet and really took the time to help us pick out everything we needed (and explain why we needed half of the things that were completely foreign to us lol).

3.) Brands: I already have a few favorite brands that I love to dress Charlotte in. They include: Miniclasix (my #1), Kate Mack, Baby Biscotti, and even Baby Gap. I also love the onesies/stretchies from Little Me, Absorba, and Heartstrings. Make sure to use a promo code when you are ordering stuff from Baby Gap (you can get up to 40% off)!


4.) Car Seat Cover: I was a little late on this one, and Charlotte went without a carseat cover for the first three months of her life. I didn't know where to get one, I didn't even know they existed. When one of my friends said that she was surprised that Charlotte did not have a girly car seat cover, I first googled to see what they were, and then proceeded to buy one on Etsy immediately! Again, they have so many varieties. 

All I can say, is that this child has more clothing and personalized items (chairs, shirts, stools, etc.) than she will ever need. Which clearly means we need to have a another daughter and name her Charlotte too!

Sunday, September 28, 2014


      Sorry for the long delay between posts, but this has been a VERY overwhelming and busy summer. Adjusting to anesthesia was a lot harder than I thought it would be. I had just figured out how to be a functioning surgery intern, and before I could blink I was in another situation where I was uncomfortable and brand new. Anesthesia is so completely different than surgery, that I basically felt like I was starting over as a clueless intern again. I think that all of the people who had to do a preliminary year in another specialty (shout-out to my dermatology, radiology, neurology, ophthalmology, radiation oncology, and PM & R, friends) can relate. Anyway, more about anesthesia later.
      On another note, little miss Charlotte Elizabeth is nine months old. I really cannot believe it. She is babbling, and crawling, and has a real personality. I seriously do not even know where the time went. I am so excited for her to talk soon and hear what she has to say. Although, I do not think that "Mama," will be her first word, because sometimes she babbles the word "Dada." We haven't counted it as her first word yet, because she is not saying it to acknowledge Matt, it is just part of her baby talk. She has three tiny teeth, and is eating some table food. She tried her first matzo ball on Rosh Hashanah (she was obviously a fan). She is taking 3 classes as well-a music class, Mom's and Tots (my mother fills in for me- I don't know what I would do without her), and another class at a great place called Kidville (they have many locations). My mom was not a big fan of the little gym classes she tried a few times, because Charlotte is only crawling and cannot do a lot of the activities. By the way- my friend from college texted me yesterday morning while I was at work, and informed me that Chelsea Clinton also named her baby girl Charlotte. I guess she copied me lol. I actually do know her, because we were in the same MPH program at Columbia, and took a bunch of classes together. She is a great girl (even though I have not stayed in touch), and I wish her a big congratulations! Love the name.
      Another reason this summer has been so difficult, is that my beloved grandmother, Grandma D passed away. She was 91, but still very sharp and high- functioning. She was in the hospital with a GI infection that we didn't know the source of, but we thought she was getting better. I really did not expect her to die, and am really heartbroken. Even though she lived in Florida, I adored my Grandma D. She was generous, sweet, warm, and loving. She was the epitome of a jewish grandmother, minus the guilt. She never made me feel bad about not visiting her more than I did (maybe because 4/7 of her grandchildren are doctors and she understood our schedules). She always said "I am here, you will come and spend time whenever you can." When Charlotte was born I really wanted to fly down to Florida to see her, so she could meet my baby, but the pediatrician did not want her to fly when she was so young, and I went back to work very quickly. Thankfully, she was finally able to meet Charlotte (one of her 9 great grandchildren) when she was old enough fly. I also flew down to Florida for 24 hours to see her the weekend before she passed away (not knowing that she was going to). I am so grateful that I was able to do that, and I hope that Charlotte inherits as many of her attributes as possible.
    SO that was my busy summer......I was never able to go to the beach, or do all of those summery things I thought I would do with all of my (imagined) free time after intern year. Clearly, I was delusional about that. I still leave at the crack of dawn before the sun comes up, and work 13-24 hours a day. I also do 24 hour calls this year, which I did not have last year (interns are technically only allowed to work 16 hours straight). Luckily, I had no call for the first few months, so I had the weekends off, since the weekends are always overnight calls. Having that time off was a novelty after working every single weekend last year.  Unfortunately, I had a huge test on anesthesia to study for, which took up most of my weekend time. Oh well.  I think it is time to accept the fact that my fantasy of free time will not really come true for another few years until I am done with residency.

Grandma D and Charlotte

Monday, July 28, 2014

LookBook # 2

      I am so glad that everybody loved the LookBook Store. I just wanted to share one more outfit that I love that my friend actually purchased at a different boutique on Long Island for double the price. I have become so obsessed with checking The LookBook Store on a daily basis, because they are constantly adding new inventory.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

The Lookbook Store

      I am very excited to let everyone in on a little secret. The secret is called The LookBook Store. A few months ago my mom and I headed to a boutique on Long Island, and found all of these cute, affordable clothes! We were so excited, until I came across the same clothing from the The LookBook Store (after reading about it on Andee Layne's blog The Honeybee) for about half the price. So, I thought I would continue to spread the word, and enlighten everybody about the best kept secret in affordable (good quality) fashion: The LookBook Store. I promise after shopping there, you will thank me.

Here is a little dress from The LookBook Store that I wore to a BBQ at my parent's house over the weekend:

It is always fun NOT to wear scrubs on my day off!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Fourth of July in Newport!

      We had the best fourth of July weekend in Newport, RI. Matt and I have been there three times now (he took me there as a surprise for our one year anniversary), and we love it. It is not only historic, but it is beautiful. My parents had a wedding there on Saturday night (which was apparently one of the nicest weddings ever) at Rosecliff Mansion, and we decided to tag along for the ride.
     We stayed at the Hotel Viking, which is a beautiful, historic hotel, on one of the main roads, and the perfect walking distance to the restaurants and shops on the water. In the past, we have stayed at a very cute bed and breakfast, which I highly recommend, called The Black Duck Inn. Unfortunately, they will not allow you to stay there with children younger than 8 years old, which is why we stayed elsewhere this time.

     We arrived on Saturday morning and walked around the town with my parents. Then, we had lunch at a restaurant on the water called The Mooring. My parents and Matt all had the lobster roll croissant, and I had the fish tacos, which I loved. They were even nice enough to puree some carrots for Charlotte's lunch when we realized that we accidentally brought extra apples instead of her lunchtime vegetable.

     After lunch we walked around the town, stopping in different antique shops and art stores. We also found Kilwins, the best chocolate/candy/ice cream shop ever. They had so much to choose from, I was really torn between ice cream and a chocolate covered twinkie. In the end, I ended up with a delicious vanilla ice cream soda. Then, we took Charlotte into the pool at the hotel. The jury is out about how she felt about it, she didn't love or hate it. I think she may have just been hungry for bottle, because we were approaching the 3 hour mark, and I was hesitant to give it to her before she went in the water. Charlotte was sleepy after that, and my parents headed to the wedding, so we cancelled our dinner reservation in town and just ate at the hotel, which was actually really good. I had lobster with vegetables over spaghetti squash and Matt had ahi tuna. 

     The next morning we went to brunch at 41 North and ate on the deck. The outside area and views of the water are so incredible, I highly highly recommend it. The food was pretty good too. My parents went to the wedding brunch at the Castle Hill Inn, and they said it was amazing (both the hotel and the food) and that we HAVE to go there the next time we come to Newport. We skipped touring the mansions this time, which is a MUST if you have not done it in the past. They are so impressive, and I love hearing the history (especially the Breakers!). 

      I hope all of you had a very special fourth of July. Mine was a celebration that I was not reliving one of the worst nights of my life when I was covering trauma nights in the Bronx as an intern last year. There were so many stabbings and gunshot wounds I did not know what to do with myself all night. Literally- I had to go to every trauma while also being paged off the hook by the nurses about the patients on the floor, and actually ending up scrubbing into a surgery in the OR. This year, I was not on trauma nights (poor intern who was, my heart goes out to you), and I had the best time.