Friday, May 29, 2009

Before and After - Kitchen

A few weeks ago, after a rant about me wanting to paint my kitchen, Jessica Mae reminded me that i've been talking about painting our kitchen for about a year. She was right and last week, Jed and I made big moves. We made 2 trips to Home Depot to buy a total of 5 color samples.
It was a hard decision, with the red counter tops and black and white tiled floors (neither of our choosing).
I would love a whole new kitchen, but they are expensive and take more planning than 2 trips to Home Depot. We chose Sea Life with Carrot Stick accents. I think the paint works amazingly. Totally transforms the space and makes me happy when I look into the kitchen from the living room. What do you think?

Before - with 3 colors that didn't make the cut

Orange accents are fun (see "Laundry Room" for more details)

After - with the light and curtains.

Jed doing prep work for pulled pork

Jessica Mae, this is was for you...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


My brother recently traveled to Peru.  He took this photo.  How amazing??

Thursday, May 14, 2009


I've been thinking of milestones lately. 
April was 3 years since cancer diagnosis.  
May is 3 years from getting my MSW and from loosing my breasts. 
This weekend, Jed and I are celebrating our 1st wedding anniversary!  
July is 21 years since my heart surgery. 
August will be a year since Erin passed away. 

The funny thing about the harder milestones is that I am very aware they are around the corner, but then i seem to forget about them while they are happening.   The summer 5 years after heart surgery, I was in Texas visiting the Coopers.  That surgery effed my head up for a long time (it took 19 years for me to realize that it was just preparing me for something way bigger) and I remember being 13 and kind of thinking that I should feel something (I didn't really) or should be celebrated or something (I think Carol baked me a cake).  Now each July, I just acknowledge how long ago it was and remark that it was my first experience at CHOP.  

This April was hard.  I still remember every single thing about the day I went to the doctor after discovering my lump.  I remember going to the bathroom of my internship too often and touching it and KNOWING it wasn't right.  I thought about those memories this year.  A few weeks ago, I helped my friend Lauren promote her Lithe Pink classes designed specifically for post-op breast cancer ladies.  I was interviewed and then me and a bunch of others participated in a mock class for the cameras.  I was AMAZED that I started Litheing 3 months after one of my major surgeries.  I mean, I was doubting I could do the exercises in the mock class...I couldn't remember how hard they must have been for me so soon after surgery.  I talked to Lauren about it after the class and we both agreed that I was hellbent on not being held back.  I haven't taken a Lithe class in almost a year and honestly, I'm scared I couldn't do it.  Thinking about the milestone and being physically back where I was 2 years ago put me in a funk that I didn't recognize for a few weeks.  I think each year gets easier, but not easy enough. 

I am already preparing for a difficult August, but I also know that I can't prepare enough.  It will sneak up on me and I'll only realize that i was surrounded by fog after it lifts.  I'm putting it out here now in advance - please cut me slack if i lack social skills in early August.  

Jed and I are off to the shore for a long weekend to celebrate.  This is the best milestone I have going.  All of the others are bearable and  manageable because of Jed.  Bring it.  I can take it.   


I am a big fan of Breast Cancer Action, an organization that "challenges assumptions and inspires change to end the breast cancer epidemic."  Their Think Before You Pink campaign is responsible for Yoplait's decision to go rBHG free by the end of August and Dannon following suit by the end of 2009.  As you may know, Yoplait is a MAJOR benefactor of Susan G. Koman for the Cure, donating $0.10 per pink lid mailed in by buyers.  Which means, instead of donating money to an organization that directly benefits breast cancer research, american consumers were buying $2 artificial yogurt filled with rBHG hormone, which is LINKED to the development of breast cancer, because the company would donate to Koman.  

BC Action's newest campaign is partnering with Food and Water Watch to eliminate rBGH milk from school meal programs.   We already know that most school meal programs feed children food high in fat, sugar and empty calories.  Milk may be the only nutritious food kids receive during the day.  The least we can do is make sure they aren't being exposed to hormones that are linked to breast cancer.  Take action and tell Congress to allow schools to purchase artificial hormone-free and organic milk.   Now.  Please. 

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Live Poultry for Sale on Spring Garden

Yesterday, I noticed Q and Q Live Poultry store on Spring Garden, between 11th and Ridge.  This morning, I googled it and came across this amazing video.  

Although the cages the birds are kept in do not fit into my mental image of humanely treated animals, they all come from local farms (PA, NJ and NY).  I have to believe that eating birds killed the day you want to eat it tastes better than any other alternative.  I don't think I'm ready to give up buying my poultry from Greensgrow, Headhouse Sq or the Terminal, but maybe one day I'll give Q and Q a try.  Would you??

Monday, May 4, 2009

Backyard, Before & After

A sneak peek

Jed will claim it is still a work in progress, but i'm pretty sure we have the best backyard in Fishtown.