Wednesday, March 4, 2015

What I'm Loving Wednesday - MS Awareness Week Edition

Happy Wednesday! Today is my first day back to work after a mini-vacation in SoCal. Blog posts about all the fun things I did (including zip lining in Catalina) to come soon. Until then I am back with Rachel for What I'm Loving Wednesday!

The Boston Garden and Zakim Bridge lit orange for MS!
I'm loving that it is MS Awareness Week and I'm seeing things about MS everywhere! Social media is a buzz with facts about MS! Today I'm hoping you will help me to raise awareness by wearing orange and posting a photo with the hashtag #OutstandingInOrangeForMS. I plan to post all the photos in my blog post on Friday! Let's get my hashtag trending!!!!

I'm loving that I have orange nails in honor of #OutstandingInOrangeForMS today! (I promise they are orange even though in different lighting they sometimes look pink or red)!

I'm loving that my Trivia Night MS Fundraiser is THIS month. I need to get to work on a few more things for it but awesome raffle prizes have been gathered and it is going to be a lot of fun! If you are local and want to come let me know! It is Sun, March 22nd in Allston. $10 per person!

I'm loving all the "votes" I got on this post. I still would love more input so if you haven't voted check it out and let me know which quote you think we should put on The Bean Team's t-shirts at the Boston MS Walk. Or if you have a great quote that I didn't include leave it in the comments!

Now it is your turn. Link up with Rachel and I and tell us what you are loving. PLEASE link back to us or use the button in your post.

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Biogen's PLEGRIDY: A MS Treatment Option

Today is Day 2 of MS Awareness Week and I wanted to share a little bit of basic info about one of the newer treatment options for MS. {If you aren't interested in reading this entire post it is ok but please scroll to the bottom to read about my favor!}

Have you heard about PLEGRIDY by Biogen Idec? It is a MS treatment that was approved by the FDA in the summer of 2014 but for some reason I hadn't heard much about it. I recently had the chance to read more about it and it seems like it could be a good treatment option for some people (but of course I am not a doctor and you should always talk to him/her before making treatment decision).

Have you heard about PLEGRIDY? The only interferon for relapsing MS with 1 shot every 2 weeks. Please see additional dosing information on titration, administration instructions, and premedication for flu-like symptoms below.
I am not taking PLEGRIDY nor have I tried it as a treatment option so I cannot speak from personal experience. But since you only have to do 1 shot every 2 weeks it might be a good option for people who don't want to deal with daily shots or pills.

You use an autoinjector which is unlike an other autoinjecters according to Biogen. For people who don't like giving themselves shots that might make it easier to administer!

I did read that it can have "flu-like" symptoms as a side effect. It sounds similar to the side effects which are common with Avonex - I did experience those and while it wasn't fun it was manageable most of the time. Although I am quite happy with my current MS treatment, Gilenya, and find it so easy to just pop a pill every morning!

I'm just so thankful that there are so many treatment options to choose from now. When I was diagnosed there were only injections to choose from and most had side effects. Now there are oral treatments and IV infusions too!

Read my blog post on Genzyme's LEMTRADA which was approved at the end of 2014.

Read about my experience with Avonex here.

Read about my unfortunate experience with Tecfidera here, here and here.

Read about my first dose experience with Gilenya here.

Read about my one year update on Gilenya here.

Choosing a treatment is something that is a personal decision that should be made with your doctor. These opinions are my own based on my experiences. I am not a doctor!  Just because something worked (or didn't work) for me doesn't mean that you will have the same experience!

DON'T FORGET about my FAVOR!!!!!!!

The last thing is a FAVOR! Will you wear ORANGE on Wednesday (March 4th)? It is a great way to raise awareness! Take a photo (a selfie is fine) and email, tweet or instagram it to me. Make sure to use #OutstandingInOrangeForMS I will put all of the photos in a post on Friday. I never really liked orange prior to my MS diagnosis but I must say it has grown on me over the years and now I really like it! So should me how you style your orange!

P.S. Please play along. This is the first time I'm doing this and I don't want it to be a big flop. I'll feel like a big dork if the only a few people participate!! Plus orange is HAPPY and we all need a little of that right now b/c we are sick and tired of winter. Just like we are sick and tired of MS!!!! 

Monday, March 2, 2015

MS Awareness Week March 2-8, 2015 & A Favor!

MS Awareness Week 2015 

Today is important for two reasons - first it is my last day of my SoCal vacation so you better believe I'm going to enjoy it which is why you are getting this pre-scheduled post and second it is the start of MS Awareness Week!

I originally started my blog (in April 2010) for the sole purpose of raising MS awareness which would then also raise money! So this week is a favorite of mine and I want to use it to share some information about MS all week. I really hope you'll stick around and read my posts - maybe you'll learn something knew!

The National MS Society Greater New England Chapter has several events going on during this week. You can find out more about those here. I'll be volunteering at Climb To The Top on March 7th along with a few other members of The Bean Team. Despite the (very) early wake up call I always look forward to this event! (2014 here and 2013 here).

The other event that I think is very cool is the MS Cycle For A Cure which is a cycling event at Flywheel Boston. It also just so happens to be on my birthday (March 28th) which is also the same day as Emily's bridal shower. So I won't be able to make it to this event but I think you should check it out if you live in the area!

Also if you live in Boston check out these locations for lights or displays in celebration of MS Awareness week:
  • Zakim Bridge will be lit in orange for the entire week
  • Boston Garden, March 2
  • Millenium Bostonian Hotel, interior lounge lighting, March 2
  • Lenox Hotel, exterior lit for the week
  • IBEW Union Hall billboard by Southeast Expressway during May
  • +Rose Kennedy Greenway, the entire week
  • MBTA advertising cards, February - April
 If you do get to see any of the above please take a photo and send it to me (since it is unlikely that I will see all of them)!

The last thing is a FAVOR! Will you wear ORANGE on Wednesday (March 4th)? It is a great way to raise awareness! Take a photo (a selfie is fine) and email, tweet or instagram it to me. Make sure to use #OutstandingInOrangeForMS I will put all of the photos in a post on Friday. I never really liked orange prior to my MS diagnosis but I must say it has grown on me over the years and now I really like it! So should me how you style your orange!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Help Me Choose A Quote!

The Boston MS Walk is in April and I need to figure out our team shirts pretty soon. So I need your help! Do you have a good quote I can put on the back of  the shirts? It can be inspirational or funny or anything that you think would work for this kind of event. Here are five I found but not sure if any of them are the exact right fit. Vote for the one you like best in the comments or suggest something else!

These are some of our shirts from past years! I haven't picked a color yet for this year but I have a few in mind and will decide one a quote in chosen!


"Today I choose to live with gratitude for the love that fills my heart, the peace that rests within my spirit, and the voice of hope that says all things are possible."


"Life is like a camera. You focus on what's important. Capture the good times. Develop from the negative. And if things don't work out take another shot."


"We didn't realize we were making memories we just knew we were having fun."


"Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game." -Babe Ruth


"You were given this life because you are strong enough to live it."


Linking up with Amanda, Five On Friday and Friday Favorites!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Thoughts For Thursday

Sometimes you just have to eat Bagel Bites and drink a "juice box" of wine!

Sometimes you just have to put on crazy jamberry nails to brighten up your week!

Sometimes you just have to call out the a-hole who doesn't clean the snow off of his/her car! Don't worry we were stopped at a red light when I took this photo!

Sometimes when you are dog sitting you just have to shake your head at the crazy dog. She insists on sleeping like that!

Sometimes all the bananas sell out the night before a snow storm!

 Sometimes you can see the moon and Mars and wonder what's going on up there!

Sometimes you've just got to go to SoCal for a long weekend because you've had MORE than enough with winter in Boston. So long east coast. I'm heading to the warmer and sunnier left coast!

Thoughts for Thursday

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What I'm Loving Wednesday - Shopping Edition

Happy Wednesday aka my Friday since I'm heading to SoCal TOMORROW!!!! Woo Hoo!

But before my mini-vacation I'm back to share with you my latest loves. This weekend I went to the mall. I love to shop but I really have to be in the mood. Often I will only go to one store and be done. This time I had several errands/returns/etc that I wanted to get done and fortunately I was in the mood for it and had such a successful mall adventure. So all my loves are from that one afternoon. Take a look!

I'm loving these new clothes from The Limited!
I had ordered a bunch of stuff online from The Limited a few weeks ago. The reason I ordered more than I "needed" was because I refuse to pay for shipping so I bought enough to get free shipping. Unfortunately I didn't like this shirt or a pair of pants so I needed to return both.

Lucky for me the entire store was 40% off and I had two $25 savings cards from when I shopped online. Those are the only "coupons" you can use in combination with a sale which means AWESOME savings.

So I got the three things above for $56.11! Can you believe that?! A dress and two shirts for just over fifty bucks. Such a steal. The original total was $176.85 which means I saved $120.74. You can't beat their sales. I never pay full price for anything I buy there!

The photos don't do these three items justice. The shirt on the left will look so cute with leggings. It has a great hem line. The middle shirt is so soft and cozy - I bought it specifically to take to CA. The dress is so cute and is perfect for Emily's bridal shower at the end of the month (on my birthday actually). It will likely still be freezing so it will be great with black tights and tall black boots if necessary!

I'm loving the (new to me) store Charming Charlie.
This store is my dream come true. Purses, necklaces, scarves and more! I could have easily bought ten things but I only bought this gold purse which was on sale so I got for a great price. I love cross body bags and this one is so pretty! I can't wait to use it - oh and check out the inside too.

There were a few necklaces I really wanted but I resisted and didn't buy them because we all know I have WAY too many necklaces. Plus I was looking for something lavender to wear with the dress above but they didn't have anything.

Have you heard of this store? If you have one near you run don't walk and check it out!!!

I'm loving this Almond Joy cupcake I got at Cupcake Charlie's (another new place at the Natick Mall).
 I gave up candy (and soda) for Lent but an Almond Joy cupcake doesn't count as candy. Haha. It was SO good and I'm glad that this place isn't too close to my house or I would be in trouble.

I'm loving my new glasses!
I went to the eye doctor last month and my vision had changed a little so the doctor gave me a new prescription. I needed new glasses anyway since mine were four years old and had a scratch. I got Coach glasses and I really like them. They are similar to my old ones but a little bigger and a different color blue on the inside. Plus I can see so much better! Yay!

During my shopping trip I also tried on Hunter boots for the first time. I've wanted a pair for two years but they are just so expensive. I liked them when I tried them on but I just can't pull the trigger. Oh and I can't decide what color I would get - be practical and get grey or be fun and get. . . . so for now I remain Hunterless. I think I deserve a pair after this CRAPPY winter in Boston. . .

Ok now it is your turn. What are you loving this week?

Link up with Rachel and I. Please include the button or link back to our blogs if you participate so that other bloggers can find us too!

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Give Me ALL The Candy

I know that it hasn't even been Lent for a whole week yet but I'm already craving all of the candy! It is such a bad habit and we each way too much of it at work. But the worst thing happened when I was at Target tonight. . . I remember that the "Reds" Starburst Jelly Beans only come out at Easter and they are my FAVORITE! I can't have any until Easter which is going to be hard!!!!

On Easter morning I will likely eat an entire bag of these because I love them that much! Then when I'm done with those I'll eat my other favorite Easter candy. . .

Is it just me or do they taste better when they are shaped like an Easter egg? I think they do for sure!

If I was eating candy right now I'd also have some of these. . .

Oh and I also gave up soda so I'll most definitely be drinking a Coke on Easter! Give me all the sugar!!! In all seriousness I usually like to "do something" rather than "give something up" for Lent but I couldn't really think of anything I wanted to do this year so I decided to sacrifice candy and soda.

What did you give up for Lent?