Art with Alfie

Art with Alfie

Check out our painting and some of the others!

So we held another class fundraiser called “Art with Alfie.” A student in my class, Alfie, was an art major for his undergrad, and he has done some classes for fun with his wife that he thought would be fun for us to do with people who would be interested in our class.

He took a picture and blurred it out so much you couldn’t tell what it was at all, other than just a few color streaks here and there. So he split our teams of two up into person A and person B, and one person would get a turn to try to make a small part of our canvas look like the picture we had as a reference. Then the next person would get a turn to work on another area. Then we would go back and forth this way for a while until most of the canvas was covered with some kind of color.

Then he told us to flip our canvas counter-clockwise 90 degrees and start adding other colors and shapes into our pieces. It was really cool to learn how to mix the colors and to add light areas and dark areas to make the photo seem more three dimensional and then blend the colors to take away harsh edges.

We would get up and walk around and look at the other couples’ art work and look at our own from afar to get a different perspective of each part of the painting. You would notice the difference between another couples art and your own, and it was crazy how different they could all be even when we were all getting the same instructions and trying to create the same things.

In the end, he let us add what we wanted to it and play around with the colors and make it into our own painting, which was really cool. Then, after it was all said and done, he showed us the original painting that he had blurred out for the basis of our own painting, and it was nothing like what any of us had painted!

The original artwork was a photo of a Santa holding some puppies or kittens. And our artwork was just a bunch of abstract swirls of color, but it was amazing how we came to it and how different each person’s was. You could really see each couples’ personalities come out into the art!

Looking forward to doing that one again!



active release technique

Photo from Shepard Pain and Performance Care (

So I started practicing for my A.R.T. (Active Release Techniques) seminar coming up in December. We have a huge book with a ton of protocols and an exam that we have to learn before we go to the seminar so that we will have some kind of base knowledge and know how to work with. There are just over 100 protocols for the upper extremity, so it is a lot of material to cover!

They have sent me a very large textbook along with a DVD that is an instructional video on how to do each protocol. So my roommates have been nice enough to volunteer their arms and shoulders and necks to allow me to practice on them! Essentially I will read over a protocol out of my textbook that covers which muscles I am working on, how to contact and where to contact the muscle and then what motion to put my patient through to get the correct tension and effectiveness. Then I will watch the video that shows how to do it and then practice it on my patient a few times on either side.

So far I have made it through half of the protocols, and I am starting to catch on to the trend of how A.R.T. works and how much pressure to use and how to move my patients through a motion while I apply pressure to the muscle or its attachment, etc.

I am finding this to be a big review of gross anatomy, which is great! Only two more weeks until the seminar, and I have a lot more protocols to go through before I’m ready, but nonetheless I am really excited to be getting certified in it! A.R.T was a big reason I became interested in chiropractic in the first place, so I am excited to finally be getting to learn how to do something that had sparked my interest in this career and got me to where I am today–here at Palmer!


Fall Festival

Pie a Palmer Professor

Pie a Palmer Professor

My position on Student Council is the second vice president. Some duties that I have for being the second vice president are to plan events for the student body at Palmer!

The event we hold for the fall trimester is called Fall Festival. Each year we plan this event in which we celebrate fall and Thanksgiving! We hold these events to bring the students together to foster the close-knit family relationships we have here at Palmer and also to help raise money to donate to our local community.

Fall Festival usually includes a couple of things. First the Chili Cook-off. This is where we have students enter in their best chili recipes, and we have faculty members judge the competition and choose their favorites in each category. Winners from each category and a best overall are awarded!

Also at the festival we have a pie-a-professor activity. Students purchase whipped cream pies to toss at professors who have volunteered to partake in the activity. All the money from the pie-a-professor event is donated to a local charity. This year we raised more than $700 to donate to United Neighbors. This is an organization that runs after school programs for kids to help keep them out of trouble, help them with their homework and offer some fun for those kids whose parents have to work and can’t pick them up right away after school is done.

I love helping plan these events for our students. It is so fun to be able to plan things and see students come out and get to socialize and have fun at school doing something that isn’t schoolwork, studying or taking exams.

It is so rewarding to know I helped plan an event in which we raised enough money to make an impact on our surrounding community members!

Our next event, next trimester will be the faculty appreciation brunch, so I am looking forward to planning that and I will keep you posted on the details next tri!


Portable table!

My new portable table!

My new portable table!

I finally bought a portable table, and after a ton of hassles, I finally picked it up today. If choosing a table wasn’t hard enough, dealing with the delivery process was even more frustrating!

I was so excited to get my table, and when the day came and went when it was supposed to be delivered, I was pretty sad it was going to be late. But then when it was four days after the delivery date and I still hadn’t heard anything, I finally called to get the tracking number for it.

When I got a hold of someone at the place where I bought it from, they notified me that the delivery company had tried to deliver it to me four times already and if I didn’t answer to sign for it, they would send it back to where it came from. I was a little upset because there had been no door tag left that would let me know they had tried to deliver it and I really wanted to get the table, so I was nervous they would send it back and I would have to wait even longer!

In the end I got a hold of the delivery place and told them to hold it for me there so I could pick it up. I didn’t want to risk trying to plan for them to deliver it, and I wouldn’t be home again to get it.

So I picked it up and set it up at home!

I ordered my table from Astralite. It was a hard choice trying to choose between getting all the bells and whistles and everything a portable table can have on it or going with the simple route. In the end I decided with simple and hassle free. I chose this table because I want to practice A.R.T., and some students I spoke with in upper trimesters who are doing A.R.T. said it would be nice to have a table with adjustable height, and this table has that! It it super light, so when I fly home it won’t be hard to check as baggage, and I can manage bringing it around and setting it up quick when I go to seminars!

I can’t wait to use it for my upcoming seminars and at home!


Thanksgiving lunch

Thanksgiving lunch!

Thanksgiving lunch!

A couple weeks ago in the Cafeteria, we had a pleasant surprise, Thanksgiving dinner!

Turkey, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, stuffing, gravy and pie! It was delicious! Some people that I was eating lunch with that had packed a lunch looked pretty disappointed, since they were stuck with their peanut butter sandwiches while they saw the rest of us having a gourmet meal! They tried to argue that by not eating today’s Thanksgiving meal it would make the real Thanksgiving meal that much better for them.

In my opinion, Thanksgiving meals never get old, and I wish we had more reasons each year to get together to have them! Especially me being away from home. I am missing out on some good meals and quality time with my family, so today’s lunch left me reminiscing on the holidays spent at home with my family. It has been almost four years now that I have missed Thanksgiving back home, and I always get jealous when I get all the calls and pictures and texts from my family back home sitting around the table with all that good looking food.

Today it was my turn to send them pictures of my feast and friends around the table!

I don’t eat down in the Cafeteria that often, but today seemed to be a great day to not pack a lunch!

I can’t wait to see what they come up with around Christmas time!


Seminars – Worth the money?


How will you spend your money?

Many students here at Palmer have a hard time deciding if it’s worth the money to partake in seminars off campus. Some seminars are as cheap as $50, and others can range up to almost $2,000 (that I know of so far).  With all the debt we are going into as students to pay for our education, some students feel the seminars are not needed because the school will teach them everything they need to know! Now, I agree and disagree with this.

I do believe that Palmer will give us all the tools necessary to become a great chiropractor. They will teach us what we need to know about the human body and how to do our best as chiropractors to remove interference and allow our patients to achieve optimal health. But, on the other side of this, I think it depends on the type of chiropractor you want to be.

For example: The reason I initially became interested in chiropractic was because of A.R.T. (Active Release Technique). This soft tissue technique, which is very popular back home, helped me immensely through some injuries I had growing up. This technique is not something Palmer offers through their program, so I’m choosing to travel to the seminars and pay to become certified in this technique. This is the case for many seminars that students choose to attend.

So in the end, is it worth the money? If you are content with the Palmer curriculum and do not desire to learn things Palmer doesn’t teach, then maybe not. But if you do, then now might be a better time than any. I know it seems like we’re all just in enormous debt and we cannot afford to buy expensive equipment and travel for seminars. But in my opinion, I’m paying to enhance my skills and knowledge as a chiropractor, which will allow me to better to help my patients–and I’m saving in the end because waiting to take these seminars until after I graduate will greatly increase the cost of taking them.

It’s win-win in my eyes, so if you’re on the edge and money is the only thing holding you back, try going to a local one or one to which a few others are going that you can carpool and share hotel costs with!

We are very lucky as students to receive all the opportunities we do between speakers, seminars, electives and the number of docs nearby to shadow. I think we have it made here!


Toggle Class

In 4th trimester, the technique class we’re taking is called Toggle. This is an upper cervical technique that B.J. Palmer used in practice.

This week in Toggle we are working on our X-ray line analysis skills. There are different views of X-ray we look at, and we draw a bunch of lines on them in order to determine if we should adjust and how we should adjust. At first we were looking at drawn outlines of what we might see on an X-ray, but this week we go to view real X-rays.

I have to say that even though we’d done the drawn outline ones, and I felt like I had a good handle on them, looking at the real X-rays still came as a bit of a challenge. The drawings are slightly misleading because they give the impression that the structure will be outlined well and easy to see. This is not the case. Most structures have a faint outline, or blend in with other things so it is pretty hard to see at first. But with a little help from our instructors, it got much easier to recognize the different things we were looking for.

It is kind of amazing how you can first look at something and have absolutely no idea what you are looking at or where to look to find something, and then as soon as it is pointed out, it’s hard not to notice it and it seems much more visible than before.

Our class the rest of the week will be in a classroom that is just filled with X-ray viewing screens, so the lights are turned out and all we have to work with are our X-rays, the lit up box behind them and our analysis kits to draw the lines and measure the angles. But it’s cool to go through the entire process and come out with a listing or a finding. It is like physically measuring and seeing that the spine is misaligned and in need of correction!


The pretest

popquizmemeThe other day in our Life Science review class, we had a pretest. This is a test that took somewhere between 5 and 30 questions from each major topic we have covered over the past year and quizzed us to see how well we remember everything. It wasn’t for points and was meant to be a guide as to where we may need to review more and spend our time studying.

It was a bit of a shock getting an exam on the first day of classes when typically we review the syllabus, but in all honesty, for the purpose of the class, I thought it was a fantastic idea. If anything, it was an eye-opener and maybe a small kick in the pants to remind us of what is coming and that we will actually need to review. But, on the other hand, it also showed me how much I know and have learned over this past year!

Although it was tough–and I can’t say I feel very confident that I got many correct–at least the terminology and concepts were familiar to me, and I felt like I could make an educated guess, or that I could narrow down the selections and go from there and make relationships between things.

It gives me hope in that many things, although they are not in the forefront of my memory just now, with some review will come back quickly and I will be just fine!

Hoping for good results.



Find My iPhone app

If you have not downloaded this app yet, let me tell you why you should!

The other day I was taking my pooch, Sota, for a nice long bike ride in the evening. I was wearing a jacket as the weather is getting a little cooler, and in my jacket pocket I put my keys and my phone and off we went. Sota is an amazing dog, and I couldn’t ask for him to be any more well-behaved than he is for how much he has to be cooped up all day long. So I try to treat him with long walks/runs or bike rides at least once a day, maybe in the morning or at night when it isn’t too hot for him.

Anyways, so we are biking around the residential areas where I live to avoid the heavy traffic of the main roads, and we are gone for about an hour. Then we get home and I had gotten him an new toy, and I was all excited to give it to him. So I was looking for my phone so I could take a video and send it to my fiancé who is in Germany and always wants to see how our furbaby is doing.

Phone is nowhere to be found. But luckily I have the Find My iPhone app. (I will admit I have a tendency to lose my phone, and this is not the first time I have needed to use it.) So I open the app, and up pops the little map telling me where all my devices are. And low and behold, there is my iPhone, about 12 blocks away from my house in some random neighborhood. But it is on and working, so there is hope!

My roommate and I go out on the hunt, and we are following directions off her phone to the little green dot which is my phone … lost. As we are getting closer to the dot, I realize someone must have picked it up because I did not bike anywhere in this area at all.

I used the app to turn my phone on to lost mode (which locks it and displays a customized message that I put in–telling it to call my roommate’s phone if lost and also will make the phone play a sound to help you find it). Shortly, after me setting it into lost mode, we get a call from the very nice people who found my phone and they graciously returned it.

I am definitely lucky the people who found it were nice enough to return it, and not the kind of people who would have just stolen it and tried to sell it. But, never the less, this app definitely helped me find my phone (especially if it had not been picked up and was just laying in the grass at a random park or something).

So there is my story and why I would recommend downloading the app. It has saved me on more the one occasion!

Cheers, Eh!


What’s the first trimester schedule like at Palmer?

So I was thinking back to one of the tours I gave a couple weeks ago, and I remembered one of the prospective students asking me what the typical first trimester schedule is like here at Palmer.

I was thinking back to how much of an adjustment this schedule was for me, coming from my senior year in undergrad, having only one class at noon and an internship in my last semester to having full days that require me to get up at 6 a.m.

A typical first trimester class has about 100 students in it, depending on the start date of the trimester, some trimesters tend to have smaller groups of around 70 and others have larger groups of around 110. The first class of the day started at 7:30 and the last class ended around 3:00. In between each class there is a 5 minute break, and you typically get a lunch break for 50 minutes around 12 or 1:00.

They are nice to you in the first trimester, keeping a number of classes in a row in the same classroom so you don’t have to worry too much about getting lost trying to find your classrooms. And when you do switch classrooms, you are all going to the same place together because everyone in your class has all the same classes together all day long. So there is usually someone who has figured it out, and everyone else follows them.

On top of the 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. schedule, there will be a few days when you’ll have a lab in the evening or on Friday afternoon (because usually on Friday you only have a half day with classes in the morning) the labs are one or two hours.

And that’s a typical first trimester day! The trimester lasts 4 months and it flies by and before you know it you will be up into second trimester!