Archive for tag: garden

Busy Week

This is one of those times when writing the blog is tough, because I can't remember all of the things I've done over the last week! I'm to the point where I'm keeping daily lists so things don't fall through the cracks. There's just so much to do and so much to study for.

Last week I had 2 exams, and this coming week, 2 exams and 2 quizzes. Next week (brace yourself), there are 5 exams. I've always wondered why we do things this way. Five exams in one week are too many. It's just as if it were finals. But, here we are.

I was able to join some of my classmates out on Friday night. It seems that a good time was had by all. We were able to meet some of the first trimester folks that I'd missed from the First Tri Mixer. They all seem really great. One of the drawbacks to the way our campus is set up here is that the students are spread out to four different places. We have the basic science students in one location, the clinical science students in another, and the interns in two different clinic locations. So, once someone crosses over into a different area, we don't always see each other again--unless we make an effort to do so. So that's why the mixers and impromptu get-togethers are really important. It gives us a chance to meet some of the other students from different locations.

I like how cohesive our group is in particular. I've mentioned this before, but we really do become somewhat of a family. After all, we spend five days a week, together, ALL day. If we don't love or hate each other by the end, there's something wrong. Those that have joined our original four members have been welcome additions. And of course we miss those that have left us--whether they transferred campuses to Lombard, or decided to slow down. Most of my original class is now in the same building. It's good to see them every day again. I've missed them.

As if I didn't have enough going on, last week, I started the Master's Degree in Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine through the University of Western States. The program is all online and we have students from literally all over the world. The program there is a wonderful complement to the program here. Since my goal is to have an integrative, functional medicine practice, it's a great fit for me. My goal is to complete the master's about the same time I finish here at National. I'll let you all know how that's going.

Time management and prioritizing are absolutely key to maintaining some semblance of sanity with all this coursework. I'm not sure I'm there yet--but I'm working on it. Of course, anyone that knows me knows that I'm at least partly insane, so I must have lost something somewhere. Calendars, schedules, lists, planning, and keeping track of everything that has to be done is extremely important. On top of that, checking all of those things off the list is extremely fulfilling. I have to remember to ONLY put things on the list that HAVE to be done--no lofty ambitions, week-long projects, or 5-year goals. My lists sometimes get out of control--admittedly, and sometimes they end up with the weirdest, most random thoughts written on them--like philosophical questions. And THAT could go anywhere. :)

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I took a few minutes out of studying on Saturday to go to a ROOTS seed and plant share event. We grew a lot of our own food when I was growing up, and as I've had space, have tried to do the same off and on. Now that I have some yard space, I'm working on it again. Let me just say that this event was absolutely amazing.

People from the local area bring seeds they've collected, cuttings, plants, trees--you name it--and they just give it away. I took some Aloe seeds that my plant had put out last year. I'd been saving them for quite a while. I honestly didn't even know that Aloe seeded; I'd only seen people plant Aloe by cutting. The Aloe plant that produced the seed was gifted to me a few years ago from a fellow student, so it only seemed fitting that I gift its progeny. In return, I was gifted pumpkin seeds, stevia seeds, loofah seeds, and heirloom squash seeds. I was hoping for loofah, but couldn't believe how much was there!?! A lady tried to send me home with a bag full of about 500 seeds! People were so generous. I'm eternally grateful, and hopefully my garden will be booming here in a couple of weeks. Since I've never had a fall garden before, I have no idea what to expect. We shall see.

Happy Studying and Organizing everyone! Have a great week!

Greetings and Salutations

I'm writing to you all from a newly formatted laptop--not a new laptop, but a newly formatted one. I've spent a fair amount of the last week working on my computer. Today I finally gave up, in disgust, and recovered Windows. I'm still trying to get access to all of my old files (now my external hard drive isn't working). It's definitely Mercury in Retrograde!

Midterms are winding down. We have one more this week and then a "mid-term" exam next week as well. This week should prove to be interesting, given that we have the 4th off. I'm sure there will be cookouts and beach trips and fireworks of some sort.

Last week we had Botanical Medicine and Pharmacology. Boy, am I glad those are over! I'm still in Love with Botanical Medicine. I feel like I could never know too much. My hope is to do some more research on constituents to make sure none of the toxic ones get into my medicine. That's the thing with being your own pharmacist. Even though it's amazing to be able to make your own medicine, it comes with responsibility. Fortunately, for most herbs (not all--be careful!), the toxicity is low and it either takes a whole lot of herb to cause damage, or the toxic effects are minimal.

Saturday, Grey and I went to Downtown St. Pete for Pride! We have a number of friends in the LGBT community. It's been a tradition for the last 4 years for me to go, in support, and now Grey has been going for the last 2 years. We missed the parade due to rain, but we caught up with friends afterwards. I'm always impressed at how things go during Pride. Everyone comes out, and for the most part it's an extremely positive experience. I'm thinking that next year maybe the school should have a booth at the parade. I should probably talk to someone about that. There are a lot of health care vendors and educational booths there. It would be a great opportunity to expand our reach.


This week's picture is of my Mullein. Admittedly, I have been running like a mad crazy woman, since I moved into my place and I haven't planted anything else or set up my garden. I honestly have no idea when I'll have time (maybe I should work on that this weekend). But, the Mullein is flowering, and it's lovely. I'm excited!

Have a great 4th of July, everyone. Enjoy Independence and whatever that means for you!

The DC and More

I have thoroughly geeked out this week. Thoroughly. I've been very seriously thinking about further training after acquiring my DC--with either a residency, perhaps adding the ND through National, or through a diplomate program.

At the behest of my good friend Jacqlyn, I've started looking at the diplomate programs in earnest. So, for those of you who don't know, there are several diplomate programs available to us through the ACA. The two that I'm most interested in are Diagnosis and Internal Disorders and Clinical Nutrition. I'm still gathering information, but very excited--and right now leaning towards the program in Clinical Nutrition. A few of my classmates are already working toward the Neurology diplomate through the Carrick Institute. I know we have many faculty members with their diplomate in radiology (DACBR) and advanced degrees in nutrition. Several of the programs offer options while we're still in school. I'm especially intrigued at the possibility of graduating with my doctorate, and my diplomate.


Diplomate programs information (just a few but there are more):

I want to thank Dr. Chang, our EBP and Public Health professor, for turning me on to the NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information) search engine. As part of an EBP (evidence based practice) assignment, we were asked to set up a search. Through this tool, I can set up automated searches on research topics that I'm interested in. I receive a litany of emails every morning on each of my topics--the newest research and analysis. OK, this sounds boring, I know. But for a research geek that's always looking for more information on about 80,000 topics (and doesn't have time to do 80,000 searches), having an automated search return all of that to me every morning is pretty amazing.

Beyond all of that, I took it easy this weekend. Thankfully, the weather is warming up (I thought it would never happen!), and it's starting to feel, smell, and act like spring. Grey and I set some seed out for organic lettuce and herbs. We've got more to set up. Trying the whole urban gardening thing is a new experience for me. I hope it works. If it does, I'll probably have more lettuce than I can use. We've also started rosemary for cooking, lavender, sage, and catnip is soon to come. My goal is to eventually grow enough medicinal herbs to not have to spend so much money on herbs for my tonics. We'll see what happens there.


So, since I've been so busy doing research and being nerdy, being crafty, resourceful, and hiding out in the house, I have no beautiful Florida pictures for all of you today. What I do have, and since everyone loves cute pictures of cats, are pictures of my cat Moose--the queen of everything. I hope everybody has an amazing week!