Loafing around

I made another hippie loaf


This pumpkin banana bread recipe is crazy yum.  I should have made another batch way sooner.  I don’t know what was holding me back.  Actually I think I do.  I rarely let bananas get to the mega-brown state that is oh-so-perfect for bread making.  Smoothies and oats usually get them long before they reach that point of no return.


This batch was moist like a muffin, but also fluffy like bread.  Perfect when warmed and topped with peanut butter.

With a side of coffee and berries.


The weather lately has been kinda meh, and the other day I used it as an excuse to stay inside and have a dance party in my sweats (yes, I actually did this).  When I hear Gaga I can’t help but bust a move, much to our downstairs neighbor’s dismay.  It was a pretty good workout, too. ;)  Not my typical day off cardio, but whatever.  Back to work manana. 

This week I’ve had some interesting patients.  I mean, I always like chatting it up with patients, but this week some of them have had especially intriguing life stories to share.  That’s one of the best things about my job – I hear the most incredible and unbelievable things.  Sometimes I feel like I should write them down (but of course confidentiality prohibits such actions).  Unfortunately, I have plenty of horribly difficult personalities to balance the gems out.  I cared for a real terror back-to-back days last week, and they were the most mentally taxing shifts.  Psych patients are really not my forte.  This patient had me nearly pulling my hair out.  I have a difficult time when reasoning and rationale don’t work.  Crazy is just not my thing.  I can handle rude people.  I can handle people who disagree with me on religious and/or political grounds.  I can even handle racist people (although it can be super awkward and hard to listen to hideously ignorant remarks).  But when a person is creating stories out of thin air, acting paranoid about medical care, hallucinating and/or lying…well, it’s difficult.  I have mad props for psych nurses because that’s just NOT my area of expertise.  I would prefer a patient hemorrhaging from an ascending aortic aneurysm almost any day. 

But back to my interesting patients.  I found myself spending hours in their rooms just listening to stories and soaking up their experiences.  Not only does it make the time go by faster for me, but I think it helps create a more personal bond between us.  I feel like anytime I can break down the barrier between caregiver and patient, it creates a better relationship and promotes improved patient outcomes.  The separation between the person being treated and those giving the treatments is sometimes inevitable, but as a nurse, making myself a positive, friendly ally (hopefully) removes any intimidation and opens up the lines of communication.  This is pretty much my biggest goal in patient care.  By treating my patients as if they were my own family members, it helps me remember that they are more than just a room number and/or disease.  So when I have the extra time to find out about a person’s past, it makes it easier to see the bigger picture.  It just so happens that along the way, I tend to hear some pretty cool life stories.  Anyway, enough rambling. 


Moving on.  Here’s a lentil loaf that I recently made.  It’s ridiculously delicious.  I’m pretty sure it could (and would) convert any carnivore to veganism. 


Recipe forthcoming. 


This one’s a winner. 

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Comments (22)

  1. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga)

    you are the loaf queen!

    i just made lentils..twice in the past week! but not loaves, curries and salsa lentils.

    but the pumpkin loaf..that’s what i want! moist and then some. hate the word but your loaf is perfect.

    your patients and bonding with them…i love hearing stories like this!

  2. Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine

    I volunteered in a hospital from 8th-12th grade, and I always loved when the patients would talk to us too. We’d be in there making their beds and refilling the water pitchers and all of a sudden they’d start talking about their crazy kid/love/war stories. I’ll never forget this little old man barking at us to redo his bed because “THOSE aren’t hospital corners!!” And then when we sucked horribly at them again, he got up and gave us a tutorial himself. Turns out he’d been a pretty high-ranking officer in WWII and apparently got to yell at all his men about that on a daily basis 🙂

  3. Jin

    Elise, I’m currently in a nursing program at McMaster in Ontario. Reading this post almost makes me see the light in the tunnel and excited to start working when I graduate.
    We talk a lot about the power of narratives and story telling in our small group classes. As much as it is important learning from reading articles and textbooks, it’s a whole different thing to hear it from someone who is actually in the workforce and someone that I even remotely ‘connect’ with- even if my initial ‘purpose’ of reading your blog was to seek a little guidance in healthy lifestyles.
    Thank you so much for sharing this with us.!

  4. Kay

    Your job sounds fantastic! I’ve actually been thinking about going into nursing and your stories make the idea allege more appealing! Speaking of appealing – holy lentil loaf. I can’t wait for that recipe, I’ll be making it asap!

  5. Alison

    Oh please, Share this recipe! Im a vegetarian, trying to convert BACK to vegan. I gave up durring round one because i wasn’t getting enough protien, and my body was having some CRAZY cravings. This would be a great thing help me get back on track!

    also, your stories of being a nurse, make my want to quit my desk job and head back to school. so amazing!

  6. rebecca lustig

    Interestingly enough, I’m on the other side of the boat. Developmental/mental health is totally my thing. I’m just fascinated by how the brain helps develop such disorders and personalities and I just hope to help better the lives of such individuals who suffer from any developmental/mental health illness. I admire the people who are more medically inclined… needles are not tmy thing!

    p.s. followed your bbq tofu recipe again the other night. perfection.

  7. Lisa @ I'm an Okie

    I love your Nursing rambling. I think that’s the aspect of Nursing that drew me to the profession.

  8. Michele

    Elise, I’ve been reading (and loving!) your blog for a while, but this is my first comment…

    As a family member of an individual with declining health conditions, it is so comforting to know that there are medical professionals out there like you who care enough to make that personal connection with their patients. It really makes all the difference! My grandfather recently spent 2 weeks in the hospital and during that time i saw first hand how the relationships with his nurses contributed to his improved physical and mental health. So, THANK YOU, to you and all the other nurses out there who find the time in your busy day and make that personal connection!!!

  9. Susan

    I plan on making some more hippie bread soon too. My roomies and I gobbled it up! (I ended up hiding the last piece for myself). Also can’t wait for that recipe!

  10. Christine (The Raw Project)

    Lol, love the home dance party. My nurse mom has been dealing with a lot of problem patients this week too and they’ve been exhausting her. The lentil loaf looks great, I’ve gotta try one!

  11. Jacqui

    New follower.. and I see it’s just in time! I can’t wait for the lentil loaf recipe. I have a hard time with the texture of lentils.. and a loaf may be exactly what will convert me! 🙂

    I am not vegetarian… but am dabbling more and more in it, and may make the conversion eventually.

  12. Serena

    These loaves and breads look soooo delish. Can’t wait for the lentil loaf recipe 😉

  13. Melissa @ Vegan CacaoBee

    I hear you on the psych patients. Anyway, your patients are so lucky! I’m sure you make their day (or night). 🙂

  14. cbrady3

    I’m gonna need that Lentil Loaf recipe. I have a boyfriend to convert.

  15. lauren @ spiced plate

    i’m addicted to lentils — your lentil loaf is going to remedy my next lentil fix!

  16. Carin

    hahaha, man i understand. i get such a kick out of psych patients when i’m DOING psych at the psych hospital. but when i’m on a regular medicine service? gosh, leave your crazy at the door!

    also that loaf looks amazing, can’t wait for the recipe/to make it. i’m pretty sure as long as you put a ketchup glaze on something i’ll eat it. yum ketchup.

  17. julie

    i’m making a hippie loaf this weekend. that’s IT. it’s just too moist looking to not haha

    btw your muscles from the last post are intense

  18. Jane

    I have a similar relationship with the disabled kids I work with. I always try to connect and create a friendship with each one. Creating that sort of intimate relationship with them creates a sort of trust that fosters learning more than any other strategy.

  19. lynn @ the actor's diet

    girl i can’t wait for that recipe! i love using my loaf pan

  20. Pingback: Working through the funk « hungry hungry hippie

  21. kissmybroccoli

    I really have to hand it to all you nurses out there! As a CAT scan tech, I never have to deal with a particular patient for the entire duration of my shift. I do love being able to form bonds with our regular outpatients. It’s nice to see their faces light up when they see your familiar face and I love when they share their stories with me! It is definitely a highlight of my job.

  22. elise

    im so so so happy for you lisa. youre going to love it. its crazy and hard and frustrating at times, but SO rewarding.

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