30 January 2011

Settling In - Internal Medicine Elective

Today marks the 5th day into my Internal Medicine rotation. Although, I've been the busiest I've been since starting vet school, I'm enjoying almost every minute of it (well aside from the hours of S.O.A.P.s and paperwork). Everyday is full of learning - and not the sort of learning where you try to cram thousands of seemingly irrelevant facts into a tired, already full brain - the sort of learning where you think through disease processes and APPLY everything for the benefit of your patient. It's invigorating to actually try to use what you've learned to save a life. I'm early to rise and late to bed for the sake of my patients, but it's worth it to see the clinical signs and blood work improve little by little, day by day.

I have to say though, my ability to keep up with the housework has dwindled to next to nothing. "Poor" Chase has had to pick up almost all of the household chores (like taking the dogs out every morning b/c I leave before my dogs care to get out of bed) and cooking dinner. And as for art time...well, there's just no fitting it into my schedule.

Even though I'd say I'm happy right now, I'm still very impatient for the future to get here! I want a house so badly! Today's sermon at church was about waiting for God's time...I guess i didn't take to heart, because I'm still IMPATIENT!

26 January 2011

Diving in, Head First

I started a new clinical rotation today: Internal Medicine Elective. This is rumored to be a challenging block that I've been quite nervous about. So far when I tell people I'm taking it as an elective, they ask "are you sure you want to do that?". Well, I'm not sure, but I'm diving in! Mark Twain said "Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear--not absence of fear" so I'm rising up to the challenge and not letting my anxiety get the better of me. So today when we assigned cases, I took the toughie, and with only an hour to prepare...managed to get through rounds relatively painlessly (minus the sweat and heart palpitations). What are rounds? Rounds are an hour and half case discussions...when the clinician in charge asks you tons of questions about treatment, lab results, blood work, your future plans, prognosis, pathogenesis etc. It can be quite nervewracking, but my clinician said I did well today! God help me to continue to work my hardest with a cheerful, can-do attitude, and please be with my patients. Bless the hands that give care for them, and help my mind to reach the right conclusions and develop treatment plans.

I'M SO DARN HAPPY TO BE WORKING WITH LIVE DOGS AND CATS!!! I could just cry I'm so happy to be working with the patients I want to work with.

Peace and Love to you all! God Bless!

23 January 2011

Check-Up, Tune-up

I made this a week or two ago with Jen Barrette's New Year, New Me kit (at sweet shoppe, of course). So how am I doing on those goals? Well...I've been reading my bible ALMOST every night, and praying more. As for picking up after the dogs...it snowed 8 inches....it's cold. I suppose those are just excuses, so I need some improvement with that one. Training for running will begin in the spring. As for helping someone...we've helped a few people in small ways, but we'll have to be patient for the opportunity to help someone in a big way. As for the clean house, I don't even want to talk about it...one overnighter with a critical patient was enough to set me back for the whole week. Who feels like doing dishes or laundry after long night stuck with a "food animal" in critical condition? I'm definitely not wired for long nights like that - I got a massive fever blister of doom this week (and I blame the lack of sleep). Of course this week's assigment from Draw!Sketch! Doodle! is to draw your face using a mirror...I think I'll let my face heal before I draw it...but I digress..sort of. This brings me to the next goal - do something creative every day. Time seems to fly by so quickly, and this block has me so exhausted...I don't think I've quite done something creative every day. As for the remaining goals...those need some improvement too! *sigh* I just want more sleep! Tonight I have to check on a patient at 2am, but hopefully this is the last late night for awhile.

Peace and Love!
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16 January 2011

Sunday Happenings

So what did Chase and I do this Sunday?

We went birding...

Chase looking at the geese

As I was taking a picture of a mess someone made in my guest bedroom, the culprit popped into view to investigate. "Whatcha doing mom?"

I bought groceries for all of this week's meals. More on that later :) I really want to paint this picture though! You don't even want to know how many pictures of asparagus I have on my camera card right now (it took me a while to get the shot I wanted). :D

I bought a new 12" iron skillet. We're having Cajun Steak on Friday, and I read that it cooks better on an iron skillet than a regular no-stick one.

I daydreamed all day about my dream kitchen, and here's what I thought up: I love white cabinets w/ some of them having glass doors for displaying my turquoise and lime green dishes. The backsplash is of a variety of natural-earthy looking tiles (think of sand) with inlaid mosaics of pale blue and green glass tiles for a splash of color (but not too much!). The counters are either butcher board or bamboo, and the floors are hardwood (or something that looks like it). The walls will be a pale blue (or green). I'd love an oak kitchen table with one side having a built-in bench with storage underneath and the other having regular chairs. And LOTS of light. Stainless steel appliances including a double oven would be nice too :) Maybe someday, but for now I'm grateful to have my apartment kitchen.

Peace and Love, ya'll
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14 January 2011

Recent Layouts

I'm almost out of things to scrapbook! What will I do then? Maybe someone will send me pictures to scrapbook... *sigh*

Both of these are with the 8 Days A Week kit :) which I FINALLY bought with my last coupon for the Sweet Shoppe. I've wanted it since the day it came out. OH! The white coat was made by Kate Hadfield, but I altered it to say D.V.M. instead of doctor. :)

I can't believe I'm almost done with my second clinical rotation. So far the first two rotations have been easy going, but I'm ready for small animal stuff...Well I'm ready but terrified... My hours will be incredibly stressful and there's going to be a lot I don't know. BUT learning is why I'm here, and hard work and a good attitude will see me through (with of course God's help).

In other news, my brother left for Costa Rica today. I hope his time there is very education and enjoyable, but must of all...i hope he stays safe and healthy ^_^

News#2 Chase's job has been very stressful lately and he's in the process of transitioning to a new PhD project. Switching PhD projects 1.5 years into the thing isn't ideal. However, he actually got to have more input with this new project. I feel like the first was somewhat of a...."bricks with no straw" sort of ordeal. So over the past week, he has been diligently working on sales pitch of sorts for what he wants to do...and he presented it on Tuesday. What did his advisor think? *drumroll please* She LOVED it! I'm so proud of him and happy things are looking up for him. She said to get his materials ordered and start work ASAP :) This has been a tough experience for him, but I'm hopeful it'll all be for the best.

Love and Peace!
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11 January 2011

Draw! Sketch! Doodle! #2

I finished my drawing assignment for http://drawsketchdoodle.blogspot.com/ this week. Can't say I'm particularly pleased with it, but what was I really expecting from drawing a crumpled piece of paper? It does look like a crumpled piece of somethin... (of course..it would be slightly better if I bothered to rescan it).

Tomorrow I'm starting a new mini-rotation within food animal rotation. It marks the end of going home at 3:30 everyday ^_^ but also the end of trudging out in the snow after a cow. I'm starting the in-clinic part, so now my patients come to me! In 2 more weeks I'll be done with food animal and will move on to small internal medicine for 3 weeks, followed by 3 weeks of cardiology. The next 8 weeks are going to be very busy..and then.... FREEEEEEEEE BLOCK!!!! 6 weeks of freedom! God give me strength (and a good attitude).

Peace and love!
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09 January 2011

A & B of A to Z - Disillusioned with school...

A for Addisons and B for Bankok Garden - we're 2 letters into our A to Z tour of Columbia. Next up (in a week or two) is C , and there are lots of choices for C!

I finished the layouts for A and B this weekend (credits in Sweet Shoppe Gallery).

Once again, I find myself disillusioned with school. Now don't get me wrong, clinics are 100 times better than the class room ever was, but the honest-to-goodness truth is I'm just tired of school in all of its forms! I feel as if this will never end! I'll be nearly 30 when I finally get out of school for good...and $140,000 in the hole. Starting salary is around $60,000...Chase is hoping to complete a post doc as soon as we're done here at Mizzou. How the heck are we ever going to pay off that huge amount of debt? In order to be on the 10 year standard repayment plan...nearly 40% of my income will go to paying off student loans. Can we even afford a house when we get out? What about starting our family? Where the heck will we live? GAH! I know there are many who have completed this before me...and that God will see us through. BUT these are the sort of thoughts that are weighing on my mind now. I guess a good dose of patience is what I need (2012 isn't that far off...and neither is my first free block)! *end whining* Now to focus on the good...I'm very grateful for my wonderful husband, my supportive family (that includes my in-laws), and all my faithful friends. I'm also grateful for the opportunities I've been given to follow my dreams...even if the getting there is a bit rough.

Peace and love. God bless all of you!

P.S. - Snow is NOT fun when you have to go catch a 1000 pound cow and vaccinate/treat/dehorn in it.
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Nival Novelty

This is Chase signing in for the 'once in a blue moon' blog post. As you can guess, it is based on a desire to procrastinate doing real writing for my work. haha But what is life without a little fun mixed in with work...you know, before, after, during, throughout, instead of...uh...you get the picture.

Nival (adj.) - of or pertaining to snow

To echo a thousand other voices of the mid-South, I'm excited about the winter weather. Here in mid-Missouri, Old Man Winter takes a little bit different approach to precipitation. In truth: we rarely get it. And by "it", I mean a real snowstorm. Despite our equidistance between two blizzard-prone states (Kansas and Illinois), we get surprisingly little more snow than Little Rock has seen tonight...far from the multiple feet I expected when first moving here. Despite moving 370 miles north and experiencing temperatures that, as a child in central Arkansas, I thought were at the bottom of thermometers just for show, we barely see more than a few inches at a time.

I will say this, the far more frigid temperatures (on average 15-20* lower than in Little Rock) lead to snow that sticks on the ground longer, but the roads turn to slippery slush equally as quickly and the use of coal ash on the roads instead of salt quickly spoils much of the beauty near the roads.

Still, my time as a youth has left a deep-rooted optimism toward all forms of wintry precipitation and, so far, I have yet to succumb to the pessimism of adulthood that sees it as just a hindrance to get to work. I have become increasingly cynical toward a lot of aspects of life: burned out at school after a difficult semester, disenchanted with work after a project that was mediocre at best, embattled and dwindling friendships...it can be tough to stay positive about anything.

Part of the reason why most people here don't like snow is that, unlike Arkansas, the entirety of Missouri doesn't shut down for snow. Katie and I experienced some of this attitude at UofA, which cautioned against unwarranted dangerous driving, but nonetheless stayed open regardless of the weather. Missouri goes one step further and practically dares its students and staff to make it to class/work on time. For 'us', 3 or 4 inches is a drop in the bucket. After all, we do occasionally get the tail end of a Kansas blizzard or the beginning of a Nor'easter, so a foot or more is not unheard of.

That does take some of the wind out of the proverbial sail, but I still look forward to it. It's one of the few things that has yet to be spoiled by a wholly unenjoyable event. I've never wrecked, gotten hurt, or even been late to work during a snowstorm. Those negative experiences I have had have always been tinged with the silver lining of family and friends, which turned them into memories I will keep for a lifetime. I've been stuck at home without power for days on two separate occasions, the most recent of which we had no gas stove to heat our food...but being stuck with Matt and Rachel playing Risk and eating tepid Chef Boyardee and (once the roads cleared) Taco Bell by candlelight for a week is hardly "roughing it". So as far as me and snow are concerned, we're alright.

The front is now nearing mid-Missouri and we wait with bated breath and anticipatory antsy-ness, Katie for a near miss and I for a direct hit. Either way, the show will go on tomorrow regardless of the weather and I need to get back to work.

Wishing everyone a safe and enjoyable tomorrow.

08 January 2011

Draw! Sketch! Doodle! Weekly Challenge: Week #2: Crumpled paper

Draw! Sketch! Doodle! Weekly Challenge: Week #2: Crumpled paper: "Crumpled Paper: Your assignment for Week 2 of the Draw! Sketch! Doodle! Weekly Challenge is to draw a piece of crumpled paper (preferably ..."

07 January 2011

MCP Project 52: Week 1 - Something Around the House

Just because I *clearly* do NOT have enough hobbies, read enough blogs, start enough projects, take enough photos..etc, I decided to join yet another weekly challenge... and that is MCP Project 52: Photo a Week. So look forward to a weekly photo of something completely random!

This week's theme was around the house. So of course I had to include Gary, who has the all important job in our household (ie apartment) of holding down the floor. Good job, Gary! Just for kicks and giggles (and in pursuit of creativity), I went for the double greyhound shot. Looking at my photo now..I wish I had moved the bowl from the left side as I find it distracting from the look I wanted to acheive. Oh well! I present to you....my first Project 52 submission :)

Peace and Love...and TGIF!!!!!

P.S. Please remember that GRAPES and RAISINS are toxic to dogs (as well as an assortment of other things). Just thought I'd put that out there just in case you didn't know. <3
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05 January 2011

Draw! Sketch! Doodle! Weekly Challenge #1

I started a new blog (http://drawsketchdoodle.blogspot.com/) to challenge myself and whoever else wants to participate to improve drawing skills through a weekly assigment/challgenge. This week's challenge was to draw a shoe - any shoe! The shoe I chose is a very special shoe to me. I wore this shoe (and its mate) to my vet school interviews 3.5 years ago ^_^ So it's been with me through some important milestones :)

I used a regular old mechanical pencil for the pencil drawing and a micron pen for the other two sketches. My hubby says I shortened the shoe and maybe drew it a bit twisted ^_^ So there's room for improvement!

I would absolutely love it if you decided to take up the challenge this week and join me on my journey to learn how to draw.

Peace and love to you all! God Bless!
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01 January 2011

Happy New Year

So what did Chase and I do today??

Chase made a bundt cake...it stuck to the pan. How frustrating!

We had black eyed peas with ham for lunch. Favorite meal of the day :)

We ate at Addison's as the first stop in our A to Z tour of Columbia Restaurants! We ate their nachos and they were quite good :)

I did another hybrid project: a birthday organizer!! All the pages are in my Sweet Shoppe gallery. I had a lot of fun making it, although I cut myself with the paper cutter and bled on May. Maybe I should stick with digital...less bloodshed!

We ended the day by looking at highly decorated tree called the Magic Tree. It was quite wild!

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