Adaptation

One week into the rotation on OB ICU. Back to waking up at 0430 everyday, leaving the hospital at 1800. To be honest, I really surprised myself on Monday morning. Two days prior on Friday night, I was up until 0330 Central Time so 0430 Eastern Time and then woke up at that time on Monday morning. It’s impressive how quickly your body can just adapt to a new schedule when it has to.

I’m a super bum this week though. And it’s probably going to carry over, but hopefully I can change the pattern. Just home, eat, sleep. The key is, don’t go home after work!!! I know that but I still do it. BAH. Next week will attempt not to do that. Also been eating like a freaking college kid. Pizza, ramen…what! I always forget to defrost things in the morning though.

I can’t remember the last time I looked forward to a weekend/break this much. Maybe when I started IM, but this morning, I definitely woke up and thought “OH THANK GOODNESS it’s Friday and I’m not on call.”

You know what else really sucks? I live like 6 minutes away from the hospital. But because of the stupid traffic lights every 500 feet on Ohio which DO NOT change at the same time (WHY WHY WHY WHY) it can take forever to get there. Even at 0500. WHY do they do that?! Stupid lights.

Also, Hell’s Kitchen and Shark Tank are very addicting.

I’m trying to find a place in Indy that will allow me to bring The Bing periodically. He’s too big though for downtown!! T.T Everywhere seems to have a 30lb weight limit. He is definitely over that. I don’t think he would like living with me in my 577 sq ft studio anyways though…

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First of the year~

Let’s see if I can get back into this blogging business a bit more.

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Went on my second vacation of the year last weekend to the Smoky Mountains! I love love mountains. So beautiful…but I don’t think I could ever truly live there. The altitude, the ups and downs, I get motion sickness easily and those curves and bumps would bring it out quite easily.

Stayed at a wonderful bed and breakfast in Newport, TN, The Christopher Place.  It was our first time staying somewhere other than a commercial hotel and we loved it! The place is much quieter, more intimate and more romantic. We had three meals there, all were delicious. Breakfast was served at a time of our choosing between 8-10am either in their breakfast area or in our room. I’m not usually a big breakfast person, but if it regularly tasted the way they served, I definitely could start eating it more often.

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There also is a beautiful view of the mountains right behind the property, perfect for sunset or sunrise.

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The owner of the property was always present and made sure that we were enjoying our experience. They also have great specials which are always available on their site including two-night and three-night getaways with a 4 course dinner and daily breakfast included! I would definitely check it out! After the two nights we spent there, I think I will definitely be looking into more bed and breakfasts to stay at in the future!

Also for the first time ever, I filed my taxes. Can’t say I really knew what I was doing, but since I don’t have much else going on for me as a single, non home-owning person with no dependents, it didn’t seem like it would be too bad. Used H&R Block which really did make it very simple. Hopefully I will be receiving a good bump from tax returns to buffer my spending!

I can’t believe intern year is almost over. Not exactly, still have 3 good rotations to fit in before I can say I’m not an intern anymore – and have to change the byline under my blog, but still! This is crazy. We’ve matched 10 new interns! Already working on our schedule for next year!

Happy PI day and happy five year anniversary with my ZJL.

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 So cheesy. It makes even me want to throw up. Vomit from my eyes.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Applesauce

I have seriously neglected this thing. For almost 2 months. T.T

However, now that I’m finished with my 5 weeks of night float, I am now on a much much lighter rotation! Giving me more time to do…nothing! Catching up with fall TV for sure, but also many other things that I really should be doing. Like giving an extremely thorough cleaning job to my studio (it’s a studio for goodness sake, why can’t I keep it clean!?), doing my laundry on the reg, getting caught up with some studying, case logging and dare I say it…thinking of some research ideas?!

During my night float, several of my med school buddies were also on a night rotation of some sort. And overwhelmingly hated it. At least that’s what Twitter told me. I seemed to be the only one who was loving it! I don’t really know why. We got quite busy as the weeks went on, and I sometimes did not get to eat although I would always stock up on a ton of snacks and drinks. But I still really really enjoyed it. I think. The reason, I think, must have to have been my team. I loved working with my R3 and chief. We had each other’s backs, were encouraging, looked out for one another (mostly them looking out for me if I seemed to be drowning) and importantly, created a safe space to vent when need be. I think the last rotation has really solidified the concept for me: The people are the most important part of your job. The hours were crazy, all I did was eat, work, sleep, shower, work, repeat, but because of the people I was with, it made it a wonderful experience. 

Not only that, but I was talking to a friend of mine online who has the most incredible travels around the world, hitting up London, HK, Sydney, etc but because of who she was working with and spending that time with, she was having a horrible time. Really really, people matter.

For those M4s going on interviews soon, really really remember that. Residency is hard enough, try to make it a bit easier for yourself with a program where you can see yourself fitting in. Sometimes you have to pull away some of the glitz and glam and take a hard look at the people there.

I also cannot believe that we are going to be interviewing people for a new intern class already. WTH! I’m BARELY an intern, how can we be looking for new ones already!? I don’t feel like I know anything!! Hopefully that changes…but yeah pre-interview dinners being organized, tour groups, lunches. Man. I’ll be seeing it from the other side…wonder what that is like. Also makes me kind of wonder what they thought about me last year.

Anyways. Recipe for this entry: Pumpkin Cinnamon Applesauce. It’s a pretty Autumn kind of recipe, and good for lazy people like me. And healthy I think. NO SUGAR ADDED! 😀 Got the recipe from The Novice Chef Blog which I got from Pinterest (of course). And another of course, I did not really follow exactly what it said.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Applesauce

Yield: 4 cups of applesauce, 8 servings

Recipe Note: Notice in the directions the apples do not need to be peeled. The skin of an apple holds a lot of nutrients, and once the apple is cooked down and pureed, you won’t even notice it’s there! Also, this recipe has No Sugar Added, just natural sweetness!

ingredients:

2 1/2 pounds apples, cored and chopped
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
juice of 1 lemon
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon vanilla

directions:

In a heavy bottomed pot over medium high heat, combine apples, cinnamon, lemon juice, and water. The liquid will not cover the apples. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat. Simmer the apples for 45 minutes to an hour, stirring occasionally, until apples are super soft.

Once apples are nice and tender, remove the pot from the heat. And now we split off into two groups of people. Chunky or Smooth!

Chunky: Add pumpkin puree and vanilla. Smash apples with a potato masher until you reach the desired chunky-ness.

Smooth: Carefully transfer apples and all liquid to food processor or blender. Add pumpkin puree and vanilla. Puree until desired consistency.

Serve applesauce room temperature or cold, straight from the fridge. Store applesauce in an airtight container, refrigerated, for up to 1 week. Or freeze up to 3 months.

I’m not exactly sure how many apples accounts for 2.5lbs, but I just used two large apples that I happened to have in my fridge…which were there for at least 2 months. But still good!!! I swear!! But like I said, great for lazy people. Chop the apple up however you want, doesn’t need to be even, doesn’t have to look nice, don’t need to peel them. Then just put them all in a pot with water, cook cook cook. I also cooked it for a pretty long time. Don’t know how long, just went by the mush factor. Watched some “New Girl” then some “Grimm.”

I also don’t have a food processor or a potato masher, so I kind of just chopped it as much as I could with a spatula in the pot after it got soft and smushy. Worked pretty well I suppose. And DEFINITELY tastes better cold.

I just need to figure out what to do with the rest of that can of pumpkin puree I have.

Flexibility + Caramel Brownies

Before I started residency, my impression of the difficulties were pinpointed mostly on the long hours and the relatively low wages that came with those long hours. That and the ridiculously steep learning curve that would inevitably accompany intern year. Especially after M4 year. Surprisingly (somewhat), I am finding that the hours are bad yes, but once you get into a rhythm and schedule, they’re not ALL that bad. I’m tired and waking up is still the worst part, but once I get going, it’s very doable. Learning curve steep yes, but again, there’s no learning like learning on the job. Seeing the pathology, seeing how to treat it and seeing how the treatments take effect. All of that really helps solidify the concept 100x better (for me anyways) than just words on paper.

No, the most difficult at this point, and probably to continue until graduation and beyond, is being mind flexible. Everyone has their own way of doing things. All with the same goal in mind, but with small subtle differences here and there. Before residency, I would hear this and think “Man, that’s awesome, I will get to see so many ways to do things and find a way that I like and agree with.” Still true, but it does become a bit frustrating when you start doing things one way then the subtle difference of where to pull, push, anchor, put your hand, which hand to use, etc. with each person you work with enters the picture. I end up feeling like maybe I really just don’t know how to do whatever action it is I’m supposed to be doing. Or thinking “wait, I thought I was doing this right…but…no??” and putting myself back at square one. Every resident, every staff has their own way of doing things. And they all do admit to it too, which is nice, but as the intern during the moments of doing things, it really just makes me feel a bit behind. They all say, you’ll learn how “so and so” likes to do their “_____” and I guess as residents we shall just have to keep a mental filing cabinet of who uses what where and when.

Anyways. The WORST part so far is probably just living alone alone here. I mean I don’t mind living by myself. It’s kinda nice, my own schedule, my own mess, all my responsibility, etc. But it does kinda suck that there isn’t anyone else around here to talk to or greet me at home or de-day with. Maybe I should get a dog. Except the Bing is too big. 😦 And then what if I get a new dog and he’s not as cool as the Bing!?

Moving on, something you guys can do! I made these absolutely AMAZING caramel brownies last week. I did my first night call and my time was so confused on Sunday when I slept when I got home and then had to sleep again to go to work early Monday AM. Hum.

So I decided to pinventure! Found the recipe from Chef in Training who I believe found the recipe from another site. These are definitely worth it worth it to make.

CARAMEL BROWNIES

  • 1 (14 ounce) package individually wrapped caramels, unwrapped
  • 1/3 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 (18.25 ounce) package chocolate cake mix
  • 3/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
In a heavy saucepan, combine caramels and 1/3 cup of evaporated milk. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly until smooth; set aside.
Grease a 9×13 inch pan.
In a large bowl, stir together the cake mix, melted butter and 1/3 cup of evaporated milk by hand until dough holds together.
Press half of the dough into the prepared pan, reserving the rest.
Bake for 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the chocolate chips over the crust, pour the caramel mixture evenly over the chips. Crumble the remaining dough over the caramel layer and return to the oven.
Bake for an additional 15 to 18 minutes in the preheated oven.
Cool in refrigerator to set the caramel before cutting into bars.

The only thing I would suggest about changing is that it doesn’t necessarily need the 1 cup of semisweet choco chips on top of the caramel. They’re really sweet and cutting that part out may help it out a bit. For my brownies I did end up using all of the ingredients though.

Also, keep the caramel on low low heat after it’s all smooth. Or just re-heat it prior to pouring it onto the first layer. The final layer on top of the caramel does not need to cover all of it. Compared to the site I got the recipe from, I had it spread out more evenly, but you can leave more holes too! You can put these in the fridge if you want to help them stay better longer (?) and they’ll get harder, which made me sad at first, but if you leave it at room temp for a while, they will get back to super gooey. 🙂 Just keep them in an airtight container! If I liked milk, these would probably be really good…with milk.

Liu Xiang 2012 Olympics

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I was devastated to learn that Liu Xiang did not make the comeback he had hoped this year at the London’s Olympics. Haven’t had time to watch the Olympics this year. Also don’t have any TV hook up here, but that’s another topic.

Had no idea about what actually happened during his event until I looked a little deeper.

It’s an amazing story and it really exemplifies what I believe is what the Olympics are all about. You don’t always win. And you will be upset when something goes wrong. He fell, clearly was heartbroken and hopped off the track, probably too proud and upset to sit in the wheelchair on the side. But then as the true athlete he is, he headed back to the track, still hopping mind you, and finished the event, hopping the whole way. And not only that, the other competitors came over and supported him off the track. And the crowd cheered for him.

Brought tears to my eyes.

He ruptured his Achilles tendon and had surgery today. I truly hope to see him compete again.

Fishtail Top Bun + Birthday Love

Almost a month without a post. I’m not quite keeping up as well as I had hoped. Hum.

In any case, since I haven’t done a pinventure post in a while, thought I’d put this one up. I’ve actually used this hairstyle a couple times already. Found it (of course) through Pinterest, and love love the blog. They have fantastic hair tutorials and gift guides and giveaways and… 🙂 A Cup of Jo with direct access to their Braided Top Bun tutorial. This is one that works quite well and stays in place all day. Very cute and convenient for running around the hospital.

I thought, normal braid works well, why not try fishtail with it? So it’s exactly the same as the original except braided fishtail style. Worked out alright, fishtail braids don’t tend to stay as tight as a regular braid, but still looks pretty good. If nothing else, it looks nicely coiled.

On another note, had my first bday away from home. Was able to spend a nice weekend with friends at home, delicious dinner with authentic Chinese dishes which I have missed very much since moving. (Aside from the food my mom has packed me!) And a nice night out (with some drama, but that just adds spice to the memories)…although I did get very sleepy early on. Alas what waking up at 0430 does to you!

Then had a wonderful dinner on my actual birthday with my classmates! Got slammed on the floors and didn’t get out until later than anticipated, but I was so happy to walk into the restaurant and see everyone there!! A pretty big deal considering everyone’s schedule doesn’t always pan out. (Just missing our nights lovely girl) Homemade birthday cake decorated with real flowers. Delicious shared pizzas since I got out late and didn’t order. Made it quite perfect. 🙂


Not to mention a gift sent from across the country. Distance don’t mean a thing…just like that meme I posted before.

Despite being away for the first time, I couldn’t have asked for a better way to start off another year of my life!