December 17, 2012

diy round-up.

heaven only knows that this week, little elf emily will be crafting, making, and baking up a storm.
here is a little round-up of some diy projects from around the web that i am loving.

happy DIYing sweet readers!

December 14, 2012

on the agenda.

this weekend...
last minute christmas party with the walnuts- perfect.
double date- drinks and dancing at the madonna inn with B's brother and girlfriend (love them).
little bit of shopping and gift wrapping.
early morning beach walk with our dogs.
some secret christmas present making (mwahaha).
christmas tree gazing, hot chocolate drinking, classic christmas cartoon watching, candle lighting, cooking making.

aka 'have yourself a merry little christmas' weekend!
happy friday friends!

it's follow-me-friday people.
check out the right-hand sidebar on my blog to 'join this site' and 'follow me elsewhere'.
pretty please, i promise it will be really fun!

December 13, 2012


when i am not exercising my sciency-nursing brain i like to watercolor paint.
it's relaxing, creative, and an easy little hobby with minimal setup.
a few of my recent doodles.
nothing to write home about but a fun little creative outlet.

do you paint? sculpt? craft?

December 12, 2012

a weekend for the books.

san francisco.
the greatest walnut family italian dinner.
beach blanket babylon.
bar rounds with the whole walnut family crew.
christmas shopping.
union square festivities.
christmas time in the city with the boy.

happy wednesday to you all!
hope you are celebrating the holiday season to the fullest- i know i certainly am!

December 11, 2012

diy: winter grain salads

a recent obsession of mine is israeli couscous + arugula.
after an outing with a sweet friends to a little communal table restaurant where we ordered a grain salad with these two little ingredients, i became obsessed.
i've been making little variations of the salad like no other.

1. make a batch of israeli couscous as
directed on the box and let cool
2. pick-up some arugula
(i prefer the wild, little version from tj's)
3. choose from the following combination
and add accordingly

israeli couscous and arugula...
cubed butternut squash + harissa + crumbled goat cheese + toasted pinenuts.
cucumber + heirloom tomato + feta + olive oil + lemon juice.
dried cranberries + slivered almonds + balsamic vinegar + shaved parmesan.
pecans + sundried tomatoes + crumbled goat cheese + olive oil.
mint + tart dried cherries + walnuts + orange juice.

a few hearty winter grain salad ideas.

December 10, 2012


what's your hobby?
is it the opposite of your day job or parallel with your line of work?
do you do it daily, weekly, monthly?
if you don't have one, do you want one?

i have a plethora of hobbies.
and i think the greatest thing about having lots of hobbies is that
there is always something to do, explore, see, or create.

i am fascinated by the human body, disease, health, and the psyche.
i enjoy painting, crafting, and creating art.
i would love to cook, bake, feed friends, and entertain everyday.
i love hiking, kayaking, and long walks.
i am intrigued by other cultures, travel, the outdoors, and people from different walks of life.
and i am always looking for ways to better myself and my relationships.

with all of these things, i try to find outlets to channel my interest
because i find great purpose in exercising all of my passions.
in efforts to help you find your hobby of choice, i have put together a little 'hobby helpers guide'.
a few hobbies that i really want to pursue more...
throwing pottery, reading, and finding my nitch in an a exercise program that i love.

let me know how you like this guide. hit on any new possible hobbies that you would like to take on?

December 7, 2012

on the agenda.

this weekend comes with much anticipation!
dinner and 'beach blanket babylon' show with my girls, their families, my parents, and the boy in the city.
christmas shopping with the parents.
a christmasy, san francisco date with the boy that hopefully will include hot chocolate and ice skating.
shopping/luncheon/girl day with my sweet nursing friends.
doing a celebratory dance for being halfway done with my masters in nursing (wahoo!).

p.s. last night my whole nursing class had a large celebratory party that was too fun for words.
nerdy, tipsy nurses. loved it.

it's follow-me-friday people.
check out the right-hand sidebar on my blog and 'join this site' and 'follow me elsewhere'.
pretty please, i promise it will be really fun!

December 6, 2012

nursing + crafting.

like every other nursing student, i have a little stress in my life.
one of the ways that i have found helpful for calming my (ridiculously crazy) nerves is a bedtime ritual.
i light my capri blue volcano candle, brew a cup of lavender chamomile or mint tea, spray my lavender spray, and chill out in my bed with the lights off while i do something non-school related.
it has become 'my thing' and i really like it.

in efforts to give some of my nursing friends a little bit of 'relaxation in a package', i conjured up a crafty and grad school budget idea to put together lavender nursing sachets, my favorite herbal teas, and a candle in a mug for their six week break enjoyment.

and here they are.
nothing says 'thank you for all of your support, poop jokes, study guides, pre-sunrise clinical carpooling, and friendship' like a little handmade, red cross, lavender sachet.

happy holidays to all my nursing friends- may you sleep a little better knowing that 4:30am alarms are still two months away!

December 5, 2012

wrap it up.

gosh, i just love the christmas season.
everything just seems better in red and green with hot chocolate, jingle bells, and good company.
in combination with mondays post on gift giving, i find it fitting to introduce you to some of my favorite and potential gift wrapping solutions for this years presents.

the crafty, paper lover in me likes for the outside of the present to be just as well put together and beautiful as the gift. super cute wrapping inspiration, right?
(via my holiday pinterest board)

so put on some 'bing crosby holiday' pandora music and get to wrapping my friends!

December 4, 2012

on my list.

dear santa,
i have been very good this year.
i need for nothing but want for a few little things.
any of these things would be super fun.
j. crew vest.

so basically anything with beautiful pictures, soft fabrics, artsy, or good smelling.
also notable... i love stripes and plaid, jewelry, pretty prints, and anything to do with juice or coffee
(aka a vitamix, juicer, or espresso machine).
i love surprises too!
what's on your list this year?

December 3, 2012

holiday gift guides.

gift giving is one of my absolute favorite things.
i love christmas shopping and our family has always been invested in giving personalized gifts.
i come from a family of incredibly thoughtful people that have taught me the value of giving all year, small or big, 
just to say thank you, i'm sorry, hello, thinking of you, or in celebration. 
a great deal of that comes from the closeness of our extended family (aka we know ever little, tiny detail about everyone) too close for comfort? sometimes.

in the spirit of giving, i have linked up a few of my favorite gift guides.
still wondering what to get your friends and family?
check them out.

as much as i love giving purchased gifts, i am also a sucker for making a portion of my gifts too.
check back later on this week for a few little handmade gifts that i'll be giving this year.
happy giving!

November 30, 2012

on the agenda.

this weekend...
a much anticipated 'friendsgiving'/ christmas night-in with my nursing girls.
the last big homework and studying push for finals for a while.
christmas movie afternoon-in especially with all of the rain here in the bay.
a deep clean and organizing of my room.
holiday drinks with old friends.
preparation for my last clinical/simulation day.

happy first of december tomorrow!
may your weekend be full of mistletoe, hot chocolate, friends, and joy!

November 29, 2012


gumption: (noun)
1. initiative; aggressiveness; resourcefulness
2. courage; spunk; guts
3. common sense; shrewdness

you can thank my favorite little, old movie character for this post-
mr. arthur abbott from 'the holiday'.

i never really heard this word being used before i watched the movie a few years ago-
immediately, i was attached to it and loved the idea that a 'leading lady' (in his terms) is always full of gumption.
a great reminder to truly be the leading lady of your own life and a push to tackle everyday with courage.
i want that little extra initiative, spunk, and shrewdness that makes my friends, family, and coworkers say...
'that emily, she's got gumption.'
a few of my personal favorite leading ladies with plenty of gumption-
eleanor roosevelt, ellen degeneres, meryl streep, michelle obama, jane addams, and mother teresa.

who comes to mind when you think of the word 'gumption'? any favorite leading ladies?
just a little thought for your thursday to challenge your 'normal'.
now get out there and make it a great day!

November 28, 2012

advent inspiration.

in our family, we love the christmas countdown. 
there are always quite a few advent calendars, countdown signs, and other measures of the closeness of christmas all around our house.
as we speak, i am working on a little-itty-bitty advent calendar for my apartment until i head home for the break.

hope you enjoy the advent calendar inspiration-
i must still be a child because the anticipation of christmas eve and day is almost too much for me.

pop on over to one of these sites and make yourself a fun little one-
there are still a few days until the 1st.
happy advent crafting!

November 27, 2012

my day job.

although you mostly see my fun adventures, inspirations, plans, and musings here on the blog-
 by title, i am a student nurse day in and day out.
this blog acts as my creative outlet to channel my inspirations and connect with all my friends and family wherever they might be. so really, most often my life looks a lot like this.
it is always a constant slew of papers, exams, presentations, homework, and whatnot.
as of next thursday i am off of school for six weeks.
yes, six whopping weeks before it is back to the grind for one more year of school.

what do you do by day? do you love it? have a creative outlet?

November 26, 2012


lots of happenings around here this past week.
fabulous thanksgiving week and a great kick-off to the christmas season.
a flights from sf to la to see the boy.
dine-in poor grad school dates with movies, snuggling, and yummy fall dessert.
a massive thanksgiving feast with all of the family.
a highly successful 'black friday' and my traditional first peppermint mocha of the season.
family night out at the new granada for some bubbly and birthday celebrations.
sunday morning avila beach family walk with coffee.
cousins crafting day to kick-off the holiday season.
how was your thanksgiving week? full of family and food? 
needing a detox? me too.

November 23, 2012

ringing in the season.

every year, after we finish our thanksgiving feast,
we clear all of the dishes, take a walk, a brief nap, and then...
christmas music!
we turn it on, wash dishes, play games, and sing along to ring in the christmas season!

after some singing and game playing,
we dive right back into the feast and have the greatest 'leftovers' dinner
while we watch a christmas movie on the big projector screen.
traditions, traditions, traditions.

the movie is usually one of the following.
and by usually, i mean it is always elf (duh).
included a few of my other all time favorite, must watch, never get old christmas movies too.

officially... happy holidays!
may your day be merry and bright!

November 22, 2012

happy thanksgiving friends.

happy thanksgiving blogger friends!
hope you are enjoying a huge feast with your family or friends and remembering those things that you are most grateful for this year.

have a fabulous and filling day!

November 21, 2012


loving on these tumblrs and you should probably too.
enjoy the beautiful pictures my friends!

happy weekly inspiration!

November 20, 2012


this is my mushy post about love.
you've been warned.
currently sitting in the boy's apartment-
girl all ready for her little worker to come home,
bikes all ready for an adventure,
dinner all ready to make, 
movie all ready to play,
dessert all ready to bake,
and couch all ready with blankets and pillows for a movie night in for the two of us.
don't worry, it's complete with fall comfort food (our favorite) and a christmas movie (my favorite).

i love you b and little stay-cations are the absolute best with you.
i am so proud of who you are and what you are becoming, 
but i am more humbled by your genuine love and strong family values. 

thanks for making me your girl, year after year.
happy holidays to the only guy (besides dad) that tolerates my obsession over christmas as much as you do.
you are the bestest!

November 19, 2012

thirty days of thanks.

happy thanksgiving week!
in no particular order....
thirty things i am thankful for- one for each day of november.

(1) my dad
(2) my mom
(3) my sister
(4) my wonderful boyfriend, brandon
(5) the greatest girlfriends in the world
(6) good health
(7) the opportunity to be in nursing school
(8) my life in the city
(9) working at sfgh hospital
(10) being able to call slo 'my home'
(11) my supportive group of nursing girlfriends
(12) lattes and coffee shops
(13) my undergraduate experience
(14) weekend mornings
(15) san francisco adventures
(16) political freedoms and rights
(17) tube socks and warm feet
(18) having a close extended family
(19) our family garden
(20) summer backyard dinners
(21) nights out with my girls
(22) the holiday season at the palmer house
(23) forehead kisses from b
(24) home-cooked meals by the fireplace
(25) my craft supply stash and afternoon artsy times
(26) pedicures with magazines
(27) avila beach afternoons and morning walks
(28) my blog and you special readers
(29) nightly talks and weekend getaways with b
(30) and that in less than a year, i will be a nurse

what are you thankful for this thanksgiving season?

November 16, 2012


yes, it's friday and i am officially off of school for a little over a week.
hello little flight to see the boy,
hello thanksgiving at home,
hello black friday,
hello ringing in the holidays, 
hello family time.
it's going to be a great week.

it's follow-me-friday people.
check out the right-hand sidebar on my blog and 'join this site' and 'follow me elsewhere'.
pretty please, i promise it will be really fun!

someday, this could be me.

as promised, here is my number one coffee-table book pick.
i ran into this book at barnes and noble the other day and i am completely obsessed.
watch the book trailer below and pick up a copy here.
doesn't it look totally incredible?
i thumbed through it... and it is.
i can't wait to be a nurse.
(this is high on my christmas list- you lovely readers. aka mom.)

p.s. on the agenda- flying to la to see my b for the first half of the week before heading home to celebrate thanksgiving with the whole family! wahoo!

November 15, 2012

noticing a trend.

looking back at my fall wardrobe inspiration (not like im a fashionista) and i am noticing some trends.
think i'm in a rut or what?
(via my 'wearable' pinterest page) 
like here. herehereherehere. and here.

you do have to admit that these are great.
plaids, stripes, neutral solids, with simple gold and silver jewelry.
gotta love it.

shopping trip? who wants to come with me?

November 14, 2012


to accompany your fall week, here is a little list of some of my current faves to get you through the rest of the week.

sets the mood and matches well with a magazine and cup of jo.
'hey ho' -the lumineers
'my dearest darling' -etta james
'all we are'- matt nathanson
'secret garden'- bruce springsteen
'where are you going'- dave matthews band
'san francisco'- brett dennen
'breath in breath out' -mat kerney
'babylon' -david gray
'i won't give up'- jason mraz
'home'- phillip phillips
'green eyes'- coldplay
'here lies love'- david bryne

enjoy your sweet fall fall day and happy listening my sweet readers!

November 13, 2012

foodie inspiration.

you know that i'm a huge inspiration junky and you are well aware that food is a large part of my life.
i love cooking, i love eating, and i love hosting foodie get togethers.

this week i decided to stick to some foodie inspiration for you sweet readers out there. 
hope you enjoy this as much as i do.
any great recipes that you have, that i need?

happy cooking!

November 12, 2012

coffee-table books.

there are many things that i enjoy that could be considered quite weird for a 23-year-old.
one of those things is great, photographic books.
i like to call them 'coffee-table books'.
you know those ones that have some wording but mostly incredibly pictures with extra large stiff paper, simple design, and hard covers. they usually have to do with food, lifestyle, travel, art, or a very specific random thing that you didn't even know they made books about.
yea, i'm a sucker for those.

i have a secret stash at my home.
an old medical atlas, some super fancy cookbooks, and a few travel ones from places i've visited.
(23 going on 83)
none-the-less, i can't wait to have my own real coffee-table and reading room one day that i can display them out and shuffle through them from time to time.
here are a few that i am loving recently.
(they can all be found at chronicle books- one of the best bookstores in san francisco)

a particular mention to that top-left hand-side book called 'the power of the invisible sun',
i saw it in the store the other day and being the child-lover that i am, i fell in love.
watch the book trailer here.

can you say 'dear santa, i have been very good this year...'
happy coffee-table booking!

p.s. while i love these four, there is an extra special 'coffee-table book' on my christmas list. oh the suspense (stay tuned this week for a sneak peek)!

November 9, 2012

on the agenda.

hallelujah, it's friday y'all!
and i'm headed southbound as of 2 o'clock today to see a bunch of the loved ones in my life.
the family, the boy, the girlfriends, and my sweet slo.
looking forward to...
relaxing by the fireplace and drinking coffee.
eating home-cooked meals.
snuggling and dates with the boy.
drinks and dinner party with the girls.
visiting a few of my most missed slo spots.
picking veggies in the garden and making goodies from them.
catching up with everyone.

going to be a great getaway from the city.
hello slo!
see you on the flip side, sf!

November 8, 2012

upon reflection.

on monday, i finished my last clinical day on the floor of the 4B unit at san francisco general hospital. this semester, i have been completing my medical surgical clinical units in the 'progressive care and traumatic brain injury unit' working as a student nurse. this is a 30-bed critical care unit serving the san francisco uninsured population with an acuity level ranking between intensive care and step-down. to many, the 4B unit would be considered an intensive care unit, yet the population demands and resources provided at this hospital cause the unit to be labeled progressive care. patients coming to this unit arrive in the emergency department and intensive care unit before being admitted to 4B with approximately half of the beds being filled with traumatic brain injuries and half filling with acute medical conditions.

the patients that i cared for in this unit come with a variety of diagnoses including: 
congestive heart failure, respiratory failure, alcohol withdrawal, poly-substance abuse, end stage renal and liver disease, hepatitis c, end stage aids, meningiomeningitis, internal abdominal bleeding, lung and bone cancer, gun shots and stab wounds, pedestrian verses automobile accidents, suicide attempts, and various other medical and trauma concerns. 

some of my favorite skills that i have performed:
IV insertion, blood draws, tracheostomy suctioning,  catheters, nasogastric insertion, physical assessments, and psychosocial care (you grossed out yet?)

the patient population that i worked with came from a variety of backgrounds and lifestyles including:
homeless, drug addicts and alcoholics, undocumented immigrants, gay and straight individuals , cantonese, english, spanish, and russian speaking, those living in single resident occupancies, international travelers, business men and women, and those young and old.

if you can imagine, i learned a lot, grew a lot, and have been touched by many of the individuals that i have been fortunate enough to work with on my days in 4B. many would think that this is an interesting and somewhat undesirable population to care for,  but i can ensure you that there is much to be learned from everyone you meet and an incredible level of human dignity that each person deserves despite their past, present, or potential future.
(readers, meet saw francisco general hospital- an incredible place)

can't wait to see you again next semester, 4B!

November 7, 2012


"he believes that when you've worked hard, and done well, and walked through that doorway of opportunity, 
you do not slam it shut behind you, 
you reach back, and you give other folks the same chances that helped you succeed."
(michelle obama on her husband)

(via my pinterest)

today i am thankful for my abundant opportunity, good health, life in the usa, and right to vote!

just a personal opinion- but quite frankly, why don't we put all of those millions of campaigning dollars towards medical research to find out more about diseases and cures rather than complaining about each other... 
just throwing it out there.

November 6, 2012

diy: butternut squash soup

a quick recipe for butternut squash soup that is sure to delight.
this recipe is from my mom and it's delicious.
made it this past weekend to bring to a 'fall themed pot-luck' with nursing girlfriends
it was a hit- mmm yum.
(via pinterest)
1 yellow onion
1 large butternut squash
1 box vegetable broth
1/4 cup olive oil + butter
3 chopped garlic cloves
1teaspoon thyme
(cream, parmesan, and croutons- optional, but great adds)
salt and pepper to taste

1. microwave the squash for 5-7 minutes
2. peel squash and cut in half
3. microwave squash again for 3-5 minutes or until soft
4. sautee onion, garlic, butter, olive oil, and thyme until onions are clear and slightly browned
5. remove the seeds and cube butternut squash 
6. add squash and vegetable broth to sautéed onions
7. cook on low heat for 40 minutes
8. blend soup or add a dash of cream if desired
9. serve with parmesan and homemade croutons for the best bowl of soup ever

happy autumn!

November 5, 2012

winter reading.

it's one of my new goals to read books more consistently.
i have a tendency to only read things that are assigned to me
and since i'm in the peak of school,
pleasure reading is few and far between.

here are a few that are on my list for my 6 week (yippee!!!) winter break!

if you have to cry, go outside- kelly cutrone (guilty pleasure)
the language of flowers- vanessa diffenbaugh (so many friends have suggested this one)
the immortal life of henrietta lacks- rebecca skloot (mom and classmate recommendation)
the spirit catches you and you fall down- ann faidman (top seller and professor recommended)

i want to start my personal 'library' just like my moms.
top five of all time?
do you have any suggestions?
please, do tell.

November 2, 2012

on the agenda.

this weekend's plans...

making butternut squash soup and homemade parmesan croutons.
fall pot-lucking with girlfriends.
bundling up and sleeping in.
painting my nails fun fall colors.
cafe studying and paper writing.
finding and listing holiday crafts and recipes for my breaks.
long bayside walk.
reading my guilty pleasure magazines.
and catching up on laundry, cleaning, and life.

whatcha doing this weekend?
happy weekend to you!

November 1, 2012


i challenge you to find some inspiration
or monthly.

focus on a quote or two that hits home and go from there.
it really helps me.
a few that i'm liking these days.
oh happy day!
enjoy your crisp fall thursday:)

happy november 1st!

October 31, 2012

a giant affair.

so, it goes something like this.
 the world's four best friends.
san francisco.
giants world series.
nachos, buckets of beer, wings, and pizza.
giants shirt adventures.
new texas friends.
some besties and family-to-be.
laughs, cheers, and dancing. 
game over (literally).

i love you all so much!
cheers to a fabulous weekend!

October 24, 2012

mornings like this.

crisp stroll to grab a latte.
etta james pandora.
tall, warm socks.
scrambled eggs, sliced avocado, and wheat toast.
relaxing blogroll read through.
nursing papers, presentations, and studies.
finding new sources of inspiration.
colorful to-do lists.
(via my pinterest)
just a mere wednesday morning.
but a good, cozy one at home,
just for me.

October 22, 2012

this guy.

i am quite positive that there is nothing more sweet then this little face.
found this little gem a few weeks ago at b's house and i am quite obsessed.
puts a smile on my face every time i look at it.
add about 20 years and this sweet face still kills me.
i miss you and love you lots b!

thanksgiving break come faster...
pretty please!

October 20, 2012


i highly recommend finding the closest independent theater near you and heading out to see this film.
'the waiting room'
it's the story of the 'highland hospital' emergency room in oakland, california that serves a unique uninsured population.
trauma, routine care, surgery, everything comes through the emergency room doors at this hospital.
it's just plain great!

this hospital very much mirrors my experience currently serving the population at 'san francisco general hospital.'
fascinating patients, incredible stories, jaw dropping histories, and daily battles. 

gets me so pumped up to be a nurse for the rest of my life.

p.s. it will be out on netflix in the coming months!

October 2, 2012


finding extraordinary in the ordinary.
thats what i've been trying to do for the last little while.
my life is pretty awesome, do you know that.
pretty, darn blessed i'd say.
here is my little list of those things that bring me extra happiness.

vanilla lattes.
magazine reading by a pool.
outdoor lunch dates with friends.
diet coke in the afternoon.
backyard bbq and wine nights.
snuggling with b.
bagels and cream cheese.
anytime with my girls.
new socks.
days at the hospital helping strangers get better.
small dinner gatherings.
homemade breakfast with my family on weekend mornings.
lavender, tea, candles, and calm music when i go to bed.
weekly quotes and verses with my b.
watercolor painting.
fresh flowers.
spontaneous nights of pure fun with my girls.

"Do ordinary things with extraordinary love." 
-Mother Teresa

September 25, 2012

feels like fall.

this is my obligatory post to wish you all a happy fall!
as you know, fall is my favorite season.
i love all the seasons but being in san francisco this fall is extra special so far. 

loving scarfs, hot tea, boots, comfort foods, jazzy old-school pandora stations, burnt autumn colors, fireplace nights in, and the feeling of cozy things everywhere.

as i sit here bundled up in a puffy vest and scarf, drinking my hot chai latte and studying, i can't imagine anything more 'fall'. 
loving this and excited for the beginning of a crisp new season (and of course christmas time in a few months!).
(my fall inspiration- see more on my pinterest)

as promised, i have begun my vision board and hope your new fall season is full of inspiration!
happy tuesday friends!

PS sitting in starbucks today and brian wilson walked in. STAR STRUCK. go giants!!!