March 19th is one of my favorite days; it’s Certified Nurses Day. I love it because I love certified nurses. It doesn’t matter what the certification is because every certification test is rigorous, requires extensive knowledge and experience to sit for and pass, and carries several ongoing standards to maintain certification such as numbers of hours worked and sometimes hundreds of continuing education credits within a certain specialty area.

Plainly put – certified nurses are healthcare rock stars.

So, why not celebrate these amazing men and women? Even acknowledgement of Certified Nurses Day to a certified nurse will be a big deal, so download, print, and giveaway these four cards to honor the certified nurses around you. Don’t forget to add your own handwritten note into the white spaces. Enjoy!

Certified Nurses Day_Chalkboard

Download Chalkboard Credentials here.

Certified Nurses Day Red Credentials

Download Red Credentials here.

Certified Nurses Day_Awesome Psst

Download Awesome Psst here.

Certified Nurses Day_YOU

Download Certified Nurses Day – YOU here.


Oh my goodness. I am so glad one of my friends shared the Tumblr #WhatShouldWeCallNursing with me. I know Nurses Week is supposed to be all wonderful and full of appreciation – and believe me – it was, but I am pretty sure the universe conspired against me last week saying, “Yeah, I know you’ve been a nurse for a while and particularly love this week. Let’s see how you handle this; tell me now if you still love nursing. Mwuuuaaaaahhhhhaaaahaaaaaa!” At least that’s how it felt. Seriously…tough week.

So, when my friend shared #WhatShouldWeCallNursing, I cried from laughter (and thankfully not due to my week…although that would absolutely come later in the week, unfortunately). I’ve been back to the Tumblr I don’t know how many times, and I end up laughing out loud among people who just stare at me.

I don’t care. It’s that funny. Check it out. 

Thanks to the awesome, anonymous nurse who continues to take suggestions from the nursing community for ongoing posts. I love it so much, I included a few gif’s that pertain to my nursing world…

When a meeting gets cancelled just minutes before it starts:

When people ask me if I sit at a desk all day as a nurse director:

When my staffing works out:

When my new positions are approved for hiring:

When someone says they didn’t receive any information sent out multiple times over the course of six weeks regarding the mandatory training due in one day.

Have a great week!

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Happy, Happy Oncology Nurses Month!

by Nursetopia on May 1, 2014

HoorayForOncologyNursesIt’s May, and for oncology nurses all around the world, that means one giant celebration month! Now, I love, love, love the nursing profession, but I must be honest; I am biased towards oncology nurses. I can’t help it…I am an oncology nurse myself. I feel at home around oncology nurses; they’re my people, my tribe, my community…whatever you want to call it.

Oncology nurses are a special group. (I know, I know…what nursing specialty isn’t “special,” right?!) And oncology in and of itself is a complex area of care. There’s never a dull moment, and it seems like there is always a new drug, protocol, treatment to learn. It’s innovative, and oncology nurses help lead the way in that, too, using evidence (or generating it!) to guide patient care. Oncology nurses beautifully blend the art and science of health care.

I am so glad I’m an oncology nurse, and I certainly plan to celebrate my nursing specialty and colleagues this month. Do you have an oncology nurse in your life or work? Be sure to celebrate him or her this month!


Dansko is at it again…recognizing and celebrating the most fabulous group of healthcare professionals – nurses, of course! Okay, I might be a tad biased. Maybe. But you can’t deny that Dansko loves, loves, loves nurses! And who’s to blame them? No one here!

Dansko is giving away a pair of their amazing shoes and a fabulous Nurses Week lunch to you and nine of your closest nurse friends. That is, if you’re one of the five randomly selected winners. That means you have to enter, though, by April 28th. Simply tell them why you celebrate Nurses Week, and you’re in the drawing! How easy is that? And oh my goodness…what nurse friend wouldn’t offer to help with your next admit/discharge/enema/[insert your least-favorite nursing care piece here] when he or she realizes you’re treating him/her to new Dansko shoes and lunch?! Oh yeah; you’ll be that nurse during Nurses Week.

So, get after it; enter the Dansko Nurses Week Giveaway, and start the celebration early! Thanks, Dansko, for always celebrating Nurses! 


Love on the Certified Nurses Near You

by Nursetopia on March 18, 2014

Tomorrow – March, 19, 2014, is Certified Nurses Day. Hooray!! 

CertifiedNursesDayNew readers, consider this your orientation to Certified Nurses Day, but all the Nursetopia faithfuls should know this date (March 19th) by now. It’s time to cel-uhhh-braaa-aate! Why? Because this day highlights nurses who’ve gone above and beyond to obtain certification in addition to all of their education and licenses, indicating quality patient care and nursing professionalism.

Now, if this quick-evening-before post is any indication of how prepared you think I am to celebrate the certified nurses around me, you’re wrong. Okay, not completely wrong. Okay, so I’m preparing the night before, yes, but don’t think I haven’t thought about this special day for several weeks. Because I totally have. 

I chose to purchase a gift for the nurses around me rather than make one like previously. And, I didn’t even make my own card this year because the American Nurse Credentialing Center (ANCC) did such an awesome job of developing all the materials for me. Seriously, kudos, ANCC, ’cause it’s all super cute. They’re feminine, for sure, so I’m not sure how our guy colleagues will receive them, but they work for my all-lady certified nurse team. I’m plastering their work areas with the posters, adding my sentimental thanks to the letterhead and cards, and emailing the pre-crafted design to my team and executive leaders, highlighting the certified nurses.

It’s. Going. To. Be. Awesome. Because certified nurses are awesome. 



Tomorrow begins Oncology Nursing Month, and next week (May 6-12) is Nurses Week. Have a finite amount of dough in comparison to the seemingly infinite amount of nurses around you? Here are some free and (very) low-cost ideas and printables to gift.

DIY Gifts:

“Fortunate” to Work with You
“Nurses Rock” Coasters

Free, Printable Posters & Cards:

Free Compliments for Nurses Poster
Free Compliments for Managers & Leaders Poster
Keep Calm & Nurse Posters (seven total: here and here)
“Anyway” Poster
Nurse “Subway Art” Card
Happy Nurses Week Stencil Card
Happy Nurses Week Contemporary Purple Card
Happy Nurses Week Retro-Typography Card
Check Here Thank You Card (general)
Check Here Thank You Card for Frontline Nurses

Let me know if and how you use them. Have a great week!


Fun stuff. Download the card, and thank a colleague.

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Nurses Week Cards: Insert Gratitude Here

by Nursetopia on April 28, 2012

Here are two more Nurses Week cards. Feel free to download, print, and hand out prolifically. The message of thanks and nurses-are-the-most-awesome-people-on-the-planet gratitude is yours to create, though.

Download this card.

Download this card.

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1 in 3 Million: June Fouse, BSN, RN, CNOR

by Nursetopia on April 16, 2012

Jedi Knight emblem

One of the most popular Nursetopia posts of all-time, ‘Star Wars’ Flavor to Dr. Patricia Benner’s ‘Novice to Expert,’ is a whimsical combination of nursing theory and pop culture. I love hearing from other nurses, and I was giddy to hear June Fouse, BSN, RN, CNOR, uses the metaphor to bring levity to her Peri-Operative 101 class. She took it one wildly-creative step farther, disseminating Jedi Alliance emblems for her students to tape to the back of their badges, serving as a secretive and celebrated touchstone within their inner circle of nurses. She learned more about the Jedi ranks, finding that the Jedi Knight must pass five tests – Trial of Skill, Trial of Courage, Trial of Flesh, Trial of Spirit, and Trial of Knowledge. Fouse explains, “All five of those are the trials we go through everyday in the OR, so were able to tie those into the process as well.” As nurses receive their emblems, they also receive a copy of the Jedi ranks and the Nursetopia Benner/Star Wars arrow. What an excellent way to teach and strengthen the tight-knit nursing culture within her peri-operative area.

June is rocking nursing care, education, and culture; I am proud to work alongside her.

The 1 in 3 Million series highlights individual nurses – diverse, frail, powerful, artistic, opinionated, daring – those changing their own lives and the lives of those surrounding them.


Many thanks to colleague, Julia Whitaker, MSN, RN, AOCNS®, for allowing me to share her poster, Using Social Networking to Engage Breast Care Nurses Worldwide, which was presented at the 36th Annual Oncology Nursing Society Congress in Boston last month. Needless to say, her poster leaped out at me, and it was definitely unique amongst all the others. Way to go, Julia!

Julia's poster was presented at the 36th Annual ONS Congress. Click to enlarge.

You can also download her poster to print or reference in your upcoming presentations and articles. Please do so!

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