Posts tagged ‘recovery’
“It’s like camping, kinda.” – Momma Newcomb
3 days ago, Hurricane Sandy washed away the shoreline that I call home. The pictures that flood my Facebook newsfeed and flash across the NY Times homepage are heartbreaking. Images of the waves and wind tearing apart the coast.Pictures of landmarks and homes completely underwater. Photographs of the lines created at functional gas stations, where families wait for hours on end for a few gallons of gas to fuel their generator. The pictures in this post are courtesy of my Dad, who snapped phone pics as he used his truck to help friends recover what they could from their flooded homes.
My family is lucky. Our house is okay, escaping damage from the storm and flooding. My dad has a generator that he has been using to power his and a neighbor’s refrigerator. My mom heeded my seasoned Florida grandparents’ advice and stocked up on canned goods and flashlights. They are making do with their propane grill meals and lantern-powered card games.
Others were not so lucky. So many families lost their possessions, their cars, or their homes. A few lost their lives. Who knew that a storm could be so devastating. The latest number estimate is $50 billion dollars of damage, but that doesn’t even begin to describe what was lost.
It will take days to restore power to the thousands who remain in the alternate and isolated reality created by this storm. It will take months to clean up the obvious debris that now litters beach fronts and side streets, and years to restore the boardwalks and beaches to the state that drew so many tourists each summer.
While there is so much to mourn, the positive messages and stories of neighbors working together provide a ray of encouragement. Stories of those with houses, food, water, and generators reaching out to neighbors in need. Pictures of board games and camp fires from people making the best of their situation. These provide me with hope that the recovery efforts will only make my home stronger.
My life, on the other hand, has been normal. Unremarkable. I never lost power, I witnessed no flooding or damage in my neighborhood, and hardly felt the immediate power of the hurricane. It is so odd that my world spins as normal while the lives of my family and friends have been put on hold. If you are like me and are watching these images from afar with a heavy heart, there are ways that you can help! Pray for those that lost so much, for fast resettlement of those stranded, for restoration of power and water. If you have resources, consider donating. Text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Text the word STORM to 80888 to make a $10 donation to the Salvation Army Disaster Relief. Text the word GIVEUSA to 777444 to donate $10 to the World Vision effort. If text donations aren’t your style, check out the website for each of these organizations to donate that way.
The recovery of the Jersey Shore that I know and love will be long and arduous, but the positivity and strength displayed by those like my mom remind me of the hope that shines through the darkness.
Time for another WIAW! Thank goodness this is a short week! I really needed Monday to recover from my half-marathon and other related festivities! I spent the day doing laundry, prepping snacks for the week, and enjoying good muscle-recovery food. Here is a glimpse into my day of domestic recovery!
I woke up much earlier than planned because I was starving! I guess running 13.1 miles the day before will do that to you! I grabbed a handful of granola and tried to fall back asleep, but eventually gave in and got up. I am done with my sugar fast, so I enjoyed jam again for the first time in three weeks! One of my favorite combos on toast is berry jam with goat cheese, and this sandwich was made extra special by homemade blackberry jam from my visit to Italy and fancy bread from the pre-race pasta party.
I spent most of my morning catching up on blog writing and reading, cleaning, doing laundry, and making snacks for the rest of the week! I made these bars from Miss Smart, and enjoyed a few bites as I was rolling them out! I also made these cookie dough balls from Chocolate Covered Katie, taste testing a bit here and there!
Vitamins and minerals in leafy greens are also essential for muscle recovery, so I made myself a big raw kale salad! Angela recommends allowing the kale to marinate in the dressing for 15 minutes, so that is what I did. The result: balsamic marinated raw kale with cranberries, celery and almonds. I was surprised at how good this was! The kale softened a bit in the dressing and had more flavor and crunch than normal lettuce leaves. And how could a combo of balsamic, almonds, and cranberries be bad?
I received a bag of whole almonds as a gift, and just couldn’t let them go to waste! I spent some time shelling them, and then made Chelsey’s cocoa roasted almonds. I probably nibbled as many cracked almond pieces as I did get successfully shelled almonds, but at least nothing went to waste. ;) And now I have a great study snack to satisfy any chocolate cravings I might have in the next few weeks! Afternoon snacking was rounded out by a crisp apple, though not pictured.
My original plan for the afternoon was to make a Roasted Garlic and Potato soup that I have been daydreaming of for a while, complete with some homemade bread, but the unseasonable weather changed my mood! After having the oven on for only 20 minutes to roast the almonds, I decided it was way too hot out to make soup and bread. I pushed that recipe back into my head until it cools down later in the week, and settled on some leftover barley and beet risotto instead. Served with a little shredded Parmigiano Reggiano cheese on top – just as good as the first time! My night was finished off with a handful or two of BBQ potato chips and a glass of red wine while studying with a friend – a little splurge to treat myself for the previous day’s work!
Hope to be making that soup later today now that fall is back in Boston… stop by later this week to see the results!
Question: What is the best thing you ate today?
My family has an odd tradition. Okay, so maybe we have a lot of odd traditions… but what family doesn’t? To share one: in my family, the best way to recover from surgery is a chocolate milkshake. Any will do, but the tradition is rooted in the McDonald’s classic. Let’s rewind a bit to see where this came from…
I mentioned in a recent post that I was born with a cleft palate and several craniofacial clefts. I am very open about sharing what I have been through, and in fact have even enjoyed researching and learning more about embryological development in med school. While a cleft palate is common, the other facial clefts are not, and so I was immediately transferred to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. I was blessed to meet some of the most talented plastic surgeons, opthamologists, orthodontists, and other specialists, who were brave enough to push the envelope with new techniques and procedures, allowing me a very normal life. I have had seventeen reconstructive surgeries so far, beginning at the age of three months and spanning through March of this past year, and seem to be done for at least the near future!
At CHOP, the only food option besides the hospital cafeteria is McDonald’s, and so the chocolate milkshake tradition began. I would always request a chocolate milkshake as a reward for being good on a doctor’s visit or for making it through another surgery (and post-surgery hospital Jell-o… yuck!), and my parents would usually oblige! This treat carried me through all of my procedures, and stuck with my mom and sister as they have recently faced the OR as well.
My friend recently went under the knife for the first time, and the least I could do to aid in her recovery was share the chocolate milkshake tradition. Now that I am older, wiser, and a lot less fond of McDonald’s, I decided to experiment with my own version of CCK’s chocolate shake for a healthier recovery milkshake! Whether you are in recovery or just want an excuse for a healthier shake, give this a try!
Question: What is a strange tradition in your family?
Healthier Chocolate Milkshake
1 frozen banana
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tbsp Nutella
6 milk ice cubes
3/4-1 cup milk
2 tbsp cocoa powder
The night or a few hours before, pour milk into an ice cube tray to form frozen milk ice cubes. When ready, combine all ingredients in a blender. Start with 3/4 cup of milk, and then use the last 1/4 cup to adjust consistency. Stir and enjoy!
I feel like an elementary school kid on the first day of summer! Even though I have been home and out of class for a month already, today is the first day that truly feels like summer vacation. I finished my externship yesterday – I learned more than I even expected and am sad to leave the office, but am really looking forward to having the next six weeks off. I didn’t set an alarm this morning and slept until 8:40am! (For anyone who doesn’t know me well, that is really late for me!) I then lounged around for 20 minutes and hit the road for my run. I meant to go further, but took a new route and got a bit lost. As I was slowing down to figure out where to turn next, my feet got a little lazy and the concrete jumped out and got the best of me…
Ouch. Luckily I was only about 2 miles away from home, but I got some crazy looks as I had blood dripping from my elbow on the way. With a little more preparation, I could have saved my elbow this bloody fate… I have learned a lot so far about running in the heat and humidity, but I am the worst at following my own advice. Here are some things I have learned so far about running in the summer heat and humidity.
- Drink a lot of water the night before you run. Also drink a big glass of water before you leave. Dehydration is the worst – its responsible for those evil side cramps and can make your mile times really sluggish.
- If you are running for more than a half hour on a really hot day or 45 minutes on a normal day, bring along a sports drink or something with sugar in it for a pick-me-up along the way. A lot of my friends put a handful of Gummy Bears in their pocket for a sugar boost along the way on really long runs.
- If possible, don’t wear cotton T-shirts on days when it is really hot and humid. You will sweat, and then it will just weigh down your shirt and trap more heat around your core. A wicking material will help pull the moisture off of you for more efficient cooling.
- Don’t run when the sun is at its peak! I made this mistake a few weeks ago and was lucky to make it through my planned 4 miles. Instead, go a little earlier in the morning or around dusk to avoid the peak heat of the day.
- Make sure to stretch well after you run! Read a little more here for some important stretches for runners.
And don’t forget to fuel those muscles! It sounds counterintuitive, but often times I am just not hungry when I get back from a long run. I probably fill my stomach up with a ton of water, but I know that my body needs some calories for fuel. I have recently discovered smoothies as the perfect cure for this post-run dilemma. I know that a lot of runners turn to protein powder, but I can’t get over the flavor. I choose, instead, to get protein from other places – Greek yogurt and peanut butter! I love peanut butter and banana in any form, and this smoothie really hits the spot after a long workout. Try this shake out next time you need a workout recovery!
Peanut Butter Banana Shake
makes 1 smothie
1/2 cup ice
1/2 frozen banana, chopped
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1/2 cup milk
1 tbsp peanut butter
Combine the ice and chopped frozen banana in a blender to crush. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend to desired smoothie consistency. Can adjust with more or less milk if you like it thicker or creamier.