Tuesday, January 30, 2007
I struggle with test anxiety despite being well-prepared for tests. I felt pretty anxious all day yesterday about my quiz in lab on histology. I finally went online & read a little about test anxiety. Rational test anxiety is from lack of preparation. Otherwise, test anxiety is irrational, and often leads to poor performance, despite being well-prepared. Recommendations were to not study right before the exam, do not hang around students before the exam that might increase your anxiety due to their lack of preparation, and to always reward yourself after an exam. I followed the web-based advice, and stopped studying several hours before the exam, avoided students before the test, and tried to focus on other things besides my anxiety. I ended up getting 100% on the exam, and even got the bonus question. As for my reward, I decided I would buy an iced decaf vanilla latte on my way home last night, but I was 5 minutes too late--Starbucks was closed! Anyway, my performance last night will hopefully increase my confidence & decrease my anxiety. And rewards--test taking might actually start to be fun! --Karli

Ripped Off

Sunday, January 28, 2007
All this time spent in public studying with my valuables strewn about & something was bound to get stolen sooner or later. I was in the bathroom for a couple of minutes on Saturday night at PSU, and when I returned, my old classic cell phone was gone. It could have been my purse. I know, I know, you never leave valuables when you leave your study table, right? I don't like packing everything up when I'm only going to be gone a couple of minutes. Well, after tonight, I learned my lesson. I'll at least pack up my purse & electronics. I can't pack up all my books & papers, though. If someone wants those heavy books, at least they won't make it very far--they're heavy!

Everyone needs to e-mail me your digits! Unfortunately, I didn't keep numbers written down on paper--they were all in my cell phone.

My new cell is nice, but I was unable to find a non-flip. I really like the solid cells from the mid-nineties. The ones they make now are so small & complicated. No, I don't need my phone to play music, take moving videos, or carry a keyboard for e-mail. I use my phone to make CALLS, I have a CAMERA for video/pictures, and an IMAC for e-mail. I'm not an all-in-one kind of girl unless it comes to Fred Meyer, in which case, I do like one-stop shop. I don't need my cell phone to be a computer, camera, ipod, and phone all in one. Too much pressure for just one device!


Late Nights

Friday, January 26, 2007

Late nights are common in my life these days. 11:30pm is my new stop-study time. Next week, I'm going to have to push it up to 12am to cover & retain this material. I really miss out on family time in the evenings & weekends now that this class has consumed all my free time. Fortunately, I'm still with Samuel all day, and I try to reserve studying for evenings & weekends. Usually, I also study in the afternoons during his nap. Tonight I worked on wrapping up the Integumentary chapter, and moved on into Bone Histology. I found a quieter coffee shop closer to home that's opened until 11pm, and 12am on Fridays. I spent an hour and a half at one coffee shop, then when they closed, found this other one & stayed there for a few more hours. I'm sure the staff there will know me on a first name basis in a few weeks. I'm nervous about my quiz on Monday, which will be identifying 25 histology slides (epithelial, connective tissue, cartilage, & bone). There is a perk to all of this--I get to drink lots of coffee! Right now, I'm enjoying iced vanilla lattes. At night, I order them half-caf.

Winter Blast 2007

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

A wintery picture looking north on Corbett. Schools have been canceled both yesterday and today, so I will miss lecure for the second week in a row due to weather. This worries me, because I could have used the lecture to help me retain the material, but I'm sure it will all work out in the end. Landon's been working from home the past couple of days. Being house-bound is nice, but I'm already feeling a bit of cabin fever, and really want to resume my old schedule! It's really difficult to study at home!

Studying Hard

Monday, January 15, 2007

On my 30th birthday before leaving to go to dinner at Fratelli.

I won't be updating my blog daily anymore, as I'm just too busy these days! Every day when Landon is available to watch Samuel, I'm studying hard. I go to the library a lot, to coffee shops, to PSU. There is SO much to know for this class, and such a small time frame to learn it! My goal is to get an A, as most programs in the health field are competitive. I'll do my best!



Thursday, January 11, 2007
Woke up to snow this morning. It was really pretty & fell for about an hour making everything white before the skies became clear and the storm moved further south.

Took Samuel in for his second haircut today. He did great, and seemed to enjoy himself.

Later, I'm taking him to get his ears checked (post-ear infection). I'm excited that I got him in with one of the top pediatricians in Portland. I always kind of thought that the top physicians were no longer taking patients, but guess that isn't always the case, and I was able to get Samuel in, although she is booked out several months, so his two year appointment won't happen until he's actually 25 and a half months.

Must get ready for Samuel's doctor's appointment.



Wednesday, January 10, 2007
Cold temperatures prevented my first class lecture tonight. After the professor went over the syllabus, she dismissed us so we could get home safely before roads became icy. It's going to be a tough class. I keep telling myself I can do this...I hope I can.


Tuesday, January 09, 2007
I hear the hail pitter patter on the roof.
Winter blast may hit tonight.
In the past hour or so, the temperature has become frigid, and snow is expected to fall by morning.
Studied for an hour and a half tonight at the library, then stopped after feeling extreme fatigue.
Let Samuel stay up an hour and a half past his bedtime because I wanted to watch "Rome" more than I wanted to patiently lay with him until he fell asleep. What a lucky boy.
Watched an episode of "Rome" with Landon, and had two glasses of red.
I'm ready for sleep now.

Oh, I foolishly gave Samuel some of my carbonated blueberry juice this afternoon in his sippy cup as a treat, but while I was driving, he shook it up, and next thing I knew, there was a pop like a gunshot and fizzy blueberry juice was all over the ceiling of the car, running down the windows, and all over Samuel. I thought about getting angry, then I saw that Samuel's chin was quivering, and he was scared & about to cry. You know, Lake Oswego has lots of great places for pulling should try it sometime. Some days, you just need to pull over, get a grip, and then continue on.


Monday, January 08, 2007
I started my lab for Anatomy & Physiology tonight. One of six prerequisites I need to complete before applying to nursing school. Tonight we dissected rats. Here is a summary of my experience that I typed out to friends & family earlier today:

Loved dissecting the rat. We worked in groups, but I did most of the cutting & analyzing, while my two partners watched. It didn't gross me out. I had to drain the fluid to get a better look at the rat. The only thing that kind of grossed me out was that after I got home, I couldn't get the smell of formaldeyhyde off my hands, even though I was wearing gloves. It was very interesting. Livers in rats are HUGE, due to the amount of filtering that has to take place with their diet.

I really like my professor. She's laid back, very nice, and does whatever she can to help us succeed. She tries to put us at ease. Unfortunately, we don't have lab next Monday night due to MLK, so I have to wait 2 weeks before my first quiz, which will be a minimum of 25 questions where you walk around to different stations & examine a rat dissection & have to correctly name the parts. There will also be terminology & definitions we'll have to know on that quiz.

One thing that was cool was that one of the rats that was dissected nearby was pregnant. I loved seeing that, especially with my strong interest in women's health. In rats, it's interesting because they don't have a single uterus where the babies grow as in humans...they have a uterine horn (as well as a uterus), which is basically the tubes that run to the ovaries, but the babies grow in there like sausage links. There were probably 12-15 babies in this rat. The students didn't know what they were looking at when they first saw it. The rat fetuses were in their embryonic stage, and probably one centimeter each in length.

The professor told us that students who do well in lab & lecture study a minimum of 24 to 32 hours per week. A lot of students murmured under their breath when she said that, because they work & probably didn't know how they'd have the time to do that. I have 8 hours at least on both Saturday & Sunday, and can fit in 2 hours each evening during the week no problem, especially after Samuel is in bed. I hope I succeed at is a LOT of information!

I made several friends already from class, and 2 of them came up to me after class & want to study with me before the first exam, and turns out we're all registered for the same lecture, too. I really enjoyed dissecting with the two guys I worked with, too. One was very good with the dissecting tools, and I learned a lot from him. He was very careful with his inspection. So far, most of the classmates I encountered don't have that cut-throat mentality--they really want to learn from each other & work together.

Next time we're working with microscopes to examine tissues. That's going to be challenging, because it is not gross anatomy. I will need to get my hands on the microscope in the library & practice using it so that I'm prepared. It's been a LONG time since I've used one.

Okay, that about sums up my first impressions/experiences from the lab.

Study Time

Sunday, January 07, 2007
I studied for five hours straight in one of the quiet rooms at the library. Productive & incredibly intriguing. Think I'm going to love this, which will make the insane amount of hard work worth the while.


Saturday, January 06, 2007
What a special day--my 30th birthday!
I received an oil painting by Patti Mali that I pointed out to Landon at her December art show, and he thoughtfully remembered & bought it for me! We dined at Fratelli in the Pearl, which we dined at once before for an anniversary several years ago. I had the best truffle oil infused cauliflower soup ever. Every bite was so delicious I could have been in Heaven and not known the difference. The bruschetta was insanely good as well. I chose ravioli and Landon had fettucine with crab. So good! Earlier in the day, we spent time walking in NW, browsed Everyday Music and picked up Nellie McKay's albums--if you haven't checked her out, her songs are excellent. Each one is its own treasure. A prodigy of an artist! Got some fun t-shirts on sale at The Gap. Dined at a Patisserie & I had a delicious croque sandwich with portabello mushrooms. I'm excited to enter my thirties, especially with some new goals established.

Special Surprise

Friday, January 05, 2007
Landon is the best.
When I returned home late tonight after a massage appointment & a fun evening with Tim & his girlfriend at McMenamin's, I found a bouquet of wildflowers beside my new imac & a thoughtful letter for my birthday. He made me a lemon drop and built a nice fire in the living room. We watched The Soprano's...Samuel was fast asleep...I was relaxed from my massage...what better way to ease into my 30th birthday than that?


Wednesday, January 03, 2007
After spending 45 minutes fighting traffic to pick Landon up from work so we could head to Salem for his gig with Nancy, I realized I forgot his fiddle...and his medicine...and his sweater. I was supposed to bring three things, and forgot all three. I do have an excuse. After Samuel woke up from his nap, he threw a 30 minute tantrum. Kicking, screaming, crying...very dramatic. It got stressful at one point when I realized we were actually going to be late if I didn't get him changed, fed, and dressed. Well, I was unable to curb his enthusiasm, so to speak, so what usually takes 5 minutes took me well over 30. It was pretty stressful. Finally, we were out to the car and on our way. 45 minutes later I was a bit stressed from traffic congestion, and was pulling into the parking lot of Landon's employer. Then I realized...I forgot his fiddle. We had to go all the way back home. Landon never gave me the slightest guilt trip. I almost cried. I usually don't forget things & am on top of my game, but under the circumstances of Samuel's behavior, I knew why I forgot. Most people would.
We made it to Salem a little late, but the backroom for those that were with the band was well stocked with pepperoni pizza, and Samuel made a friend, and the night turned out alright after all.


Monday, January 01, 2007
A new year that will bring new changes.

We took Samuel to see Charlotte's Web today, and he loved it. Sat quietly on our laps through the entire two hour film. This was our first time taking him to see a movie, unless you count March of the Penguins when he was about six months old, and he slept through the whole thing.

I finally caught up on Grey's Anatomy, so I can tune in now on Thursday nights if I want to.

That's all for now...we go back to our normal routines tomorrow...Christmas break has neared an end.

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