Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Lovely Wedding

This weekend I went to Kat and Matt's wedding - friends that we met through Andrea and who live here in Reno. They got married in a local park with the reception in a museum located inside the park. It was a great day for a wedding - sunny, blue skies, warm but not hot, and a cool evening. Kat looked beautiful and her and Matt both seemed so happy. I'm glad I got to share in their day. (And of course, it was really great to see Andrea.)

The Happy Couple

The beautiful bride with bridesmaids Alexia, Andrea and Annette

Chris made it in time for some dancing. Andrea took an excellent photo of the three of us!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Pumpkin obsession

Have I mentioned that I love fall? Well, I do. One of the best things about it is all the pumpkin everything you can get. A couple weeks ago I practically did the dance of joy when I went to Starbucks at 5:30 in the morning and realized pumpkin scones and lattes are back. Yesterday, I hung our "pumpkins" sign on the front door and picked up some pumpkin granola at Whole Foods. And today I made some pumpkin bread. You should smell our house right now. I might make it every day it smells so good in here.

Last fall, I went to a wedding where pumpkin cake with chocolate chips and cream cheese frosting was served and it was so good I haven't stopped thinking of it since. But since Chris doesn't like the chocolate chips, I left it out of the bread ... maybe next time.
But I think once the bread is gone I'll give this pumpkin obsession a rest for a couple weeks and move on to apples ... because I just discovered this blog with about a billion delicious sounding recipes, and many of the most recent entries include apples. Chai-spiced apple oatmeal bread, anyone?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Paging Dr. Gabel

Because my job involves a little bit of health coverage, on Tuesday and Wednesday I participated in a "mini-internship" with the Washoe County Medical Society to learn a little bit more about the medical profession.

I spent a half a day each with four doctors in internal medicine, pediatrics, general surgery and family practice. When I signed on for this a few weeks ago, they asked if I'd be interested in observing surgery and as soon as I said yes I started feeling nervous about it. The paperwork they sent didn't exactly help in that regard.

"At times, visitors faint while observing surgery ... if you experience any of the following symptoms, please immediately step out of the room and seek help," it said. The symptoms included a sudden feeling of warmth, diminished hearing, butterflies in your stomach, weakness, spinning, feeling like you are at a distance with the world, disorientation, blurred vision and nausea.

It's really not uncommon for me to feel nauseous or to have butterflies in my stomach, so I wondered if I'd really know the difference between just being my nervous self or if I was about to pass out. I envisioned all sorts of disasters.

When the time came, though, I was perfectly fine. I watched a laparoscopic gall bladder removal and a bilateral hernia. The weirdest part was when they made the incisions, but after that just watching the surgery was actually kind of cool. The anesthesiologist said I did well - even medical students sometimes feel faint when observing surgery and end up sitting in the corner so they don't pass out, he told me.

The other rotations were pretty cool, too. With the internal medicine doc, I did rounds at the hospital, visiting mostly patients in the ICU. Some of these were difficult, and for different reasons. I got choked up seeing one man's wife and daughter at his bedside and the way they held his hand and talked to him even though he couldn't respond, because it reminded me of those last few weeks with my stepdad. Luckily, this man's condition was improving. Other patients were difficult to see because they were partially responsible for their own conditions because of drug abuse or chronic smoking.

In pediatrics and family practice, I saw a variety of ailments and routine health checks and witnessed the relationships doctors develop with patients after a period of time.

All in all, it was a good experience. I learned a few things and walked away with some story ideas.

P.S. One of the surgeons had a little trouble pronouncing my name and introduced me to one of his patients as Tammy Kevorkian. Not sure that's a name someone in the hospital wants to hear.

P.P.S. The same surgeon is one of only a handful of people I've ever met who can eat as fast as me. Sometimes I clean my plate and look up and realize everyone else is only halfway done and I get embarassed. But apparently eating fast is a necessity when you're a busy surgeon.

Welcome Little One

On Wednesday, my cousin Jennifer and her husband Jim were blessed with a beautiful little arrival - a baby girl named Juliette. Congratulations to the proud new parents!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

You look familiar ... have we met?

This is a question I get asked a lot by perfect strangers. Seriously. A lot. I guess I have "one of those faces." I also apparently have one of the faces below. All the time people tell me I look like Selma Blair. Dozens of people have told me this. I have also been told I look like Courtney Cox, Justine Bateman, Betty Page, Michelle Monaghan and now (if you saw Laura's comment from the last blog) Misty May-Treanor. Which is nice because all of these women are lovely. But I think I just look like me. What do you think?

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sunday, September 21, 2008


I moved to Reno at the end of October last year, when it was still hot in Phoenix and already freezing here. After three years of pleasant Arizona winters, and without any sort of transition from scorching to snow, it was kind of a shock ... and until now I'd forgotten how lovely the fall can be.

The days are warm, but not hot. Perfect for a picnic lunch in the park with my husband. Mornings and evenings are crisp and cool enough to wrap myself up in a blanket ... and sip on a hot cup of snickerdoodle coffee (my first cup of joe in nearly nine months, and it was delicious.)

Of course, Chris is happy the fall is here, too ... but for entirely different reasons. Namely, football, football and football.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Girl's Night

Andrea's friends invited me out last night for Kat's bachelorette party. I thought it was really sweet of them to think of me, considering Andrea couldn't be here (she is coming in two weeks for the wedding, afterall.)

We went to the Nothing To It culinary center and learned all about chocolate (did you know cocoa only grows 20 miles north or south of the equator?) while drinking wine and eating cheese.

After our chocolate lesson, we got to make truffles, peanut butter cups and other creations. I even made a scotchmallow - dipping pieces of marshmallow and caramel in dark chocolate. Yum! It was a really great time, and a great idea for a bachelorette party.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Bloggers helping bloggers

I don't intend to make it a habit of linking to my work blog from this one, but I was moved by this story of a blogger and mother of four in Mesa, Ariz., who was badly injured and remains in critical condition, as well as her husband, in a plane crash last month. Read more here.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

How Sweep It Is ...

Admittedly, I stole the headline from a line our friend Joe used a while back. But it's appropriate today, don't you think?

Here's to hoping the Dodgers can hold on to first place for the next three weeks.

AP photo from LATimes.com

Saturday, September 6, 2008


This morning I got up bright and early to take pictures of people in their pajamas at The Great Reno Balloon Race for work. If it wasn't assigned, I probably wouldn't have gotten out of bed at 5 a.m. for it, but I'm glad I did. It was really cool to watch all the balloons fill up and take flight as the sun came up. Unfortunately, I ran into some battery issues and couldn't use my cameras (luckily I had enough pictures for work, but I would have liked to have gotten more) so these shots I got from my work cell phone. What do you think the odds are I can get Chris to go?

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

This may be the last post for a while ...

We just got DVR. Which pretty much gives me an excuse to watch all the Gossip Girl and 90210 I want when Chris has to work late (like tonight.) He's threatening to put a lock on the TV.