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Sunday, September 21, 2014

my life as a vampire, week 3

Oh hai. Long time no write.

My last two weeks of day shift in August were literally crying-in-the-bathroom-at-work stressful and the month of September has been all about adjusting to being awake when everyone else is sleeping.  Plus, most of my internet time recently has been on the mobile device and I'm not good enough with the thumb typing to write actual blog posts that way. Blah blah blah excuse cakes.

But here I am now, dropping in with an update. Night shift=so far, so good.  Several people have said to me "you sound so much happier" and it's true.  I sound happier because I am happier.  I am, believe it or not, getting more sleep than when I was working days. I go to bed between 7:30 and 8 am and my alarm wakes me at 2:30. Compare that to going to bed at 10:30 or 11 pm and having to drag my sleep-deprived ass out of bed at 4:30 in the fucking morning and you will see that I'm getting at least an extra hour of sleep per day. And I am exercising almost every day. When I'm working my usual new schedule of Monday through Thursday nights, 6 pm to 4:30 am, I go to my new gym near the hospital after work, arriving just after they open at 5 and leaving just after 6.  Usually on Mondays I've been going to the gym in the afternoon before heading over to work. Most Fridays I go to 6 pm yoga. On Saturday and Sunday I've been going to the gym or to yoga or hiking/walking with friends.  This in itself all makes me much happier.

One of my new co-workers asked me the other night whether I was still going to the gym after work. When I said yes, she said (somewhat sarcastically, I think) "oh, you're so good."  "It makes me feel so much better," I answered, and she looked at me like I'd just sprouted a new arm. Or boob.  Some extraneous body part anyway. This is the same woman who refused to walk up two flights of stairs with me the other night after we'd gone to check on a patient's equipment, so, y'know, I realize she's not down with the whole exercise concept.  But I remain bemused that some people can only frame working out as "being good", as some kind of penance for eating cookies or some act of daunting willpower.

No.  It feels GOOD.

But I'm preaching to the choir here.

To reward you for your patience with my lack of blog content, I'd like to offer up a couple of recipes involving pumpkin that I've tried lately.

The first one is a pumpkin oatmeal cream cheese bake.  I got it from a friend who got it originally from a Facebook page called Kia's Fit Fare.

1/2 cup oats
2 egg whites (62g)
81g, 1/3 cup puree (canned) Pumpkin
1/4 cup Silk Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk or the Coconut Almond Breeze
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ginger
1/16 - 1/8 tsp salt (Just a light dash, not much needed)
½ to 1tbs Stevia (Not much, you can top with Maple or Sugar Free Syrup of Choice)

Cream Cheese Center:
2tbs, 28g of Fat Free Cream Cheese
1 tsp Stevia
1/2 tbs Silk Almond Milk

What you need:
2 Bowls
Measuring Spoons
Whisk or Large Fork
Large Ramekin
Cooking Spray/Oil


1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray Large Ramekin with cooking spray.
2. Combine all ingredients in bowl, pour in Ramekin.
3. For the cream cheese center, combine all ingredients listed. Lightly place in center of Bake without pushing down through mixture.
4. Topped with 3g (1/2 tbs) of pumpkin seeds.
5. Bake 30 mins at 350.
6. Allow to set for a few mins to cool and firm up slightly
7. Enjoy!! (Remember this is a Bake, so it will be slightly moist in center)

Nutrition /Macros for Pumpkin Cream Cheese Oatmeal Bake:
Calories: 252
Fat: 5g
Carbohydrate: 36g
Protein: 18g

The only change I make to the recipe is to use reduced fat (rather than fat-free) cream cheese and Splenda instead of stevia, because a.) fat-free cheese is a non sequitor and b.) I'm scarily not worried about getting cancer, and stevia tastes like ass to me.

The second recipe is for pumpkin turkey chili, and the recipe is on the Whole Foods website:

The changes I made to this were: using black beans instead of kidney beans, using 1.25 lbs of ground turkey instead of a pound (b/c that's how big my package was, plus PROTEINZ), omitting the garlic (b/c mine had dried up [sad face]), and adding a half teaspoon of cinnamon.  Plus mine's in plastic freezer containers, not a nice ceramic bowl, and there's not going to be any fancee sour cream garnish because work lunch.

I will say, if you intend to use that chili for dinner, NOT a work lunch, six servings is kinda overly optimistic in my view, even though I added extra meat to mine.  I'd say it makes three to four normal dinner-sized helpings. But maybe I'm just a glutton.

I hope to tell you all about my new gym in a separate post, but until then, just let me say this--the convenience store across the street from it sells individual Quest bars. For 3 bucks a pop.  Despite this highway robbery, I've been taking the opportunity to try out flavors I haven't had before and wouldn't buy a whole box of.  I had to buy two white chocolate raspberries ones in order to make a decision whether they were weird or tasted good. Conclusion: they're weird. But they also taste kinda good.

Oh, shut up. I just gave you a recipe for chili that has pumpkin in it. Do you trust my taste buds anyway?



  1. Sleep makes happy!
    (Er, the pumpkin oatmeal cream cheese bake is missing--bunch of blank white lines there. Not that I'm going to cook anything with cream cheese. I'll eat it when other people cook with it, but I won't look it in the face.)

    Mary Anne in Kentucky

  2. Okay, I think I fixed the formatting problem...

    1. Yes, you did. Now to fix my eyes: I kept reading "tbs" as "lbs", although I would probably like it better if it were topped with half a pound of pumpkin seeds….

  3. OK, both these recipes look seriously tempting, even though they involve cooking, and have more than two ingredients. But it's so rare that I encounter any recipes that contain the ingredients I actually eat and enjoy, and these both sound kinda awesome and worth rolling up my sleeves and trying to conjure up a ramekin-like object in the chaos that is our kitchen cabinet.

    thank you!

    Oh, and so glad the new schedule is working out! I think people who can handle shift work are kinda bad-ass.

  4. Crabby, as an aside, definitely go for a *large* ramekin-like object. I use the biggest ramekin thingy I have and the recipe still fills it to the top and it usually bubbles over a little while cooking (so I pt it on a cookie sheet in the oven.)

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