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!


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!


Labour Day

So summer has come and gone, and I have to say looking back it didn’t feel much like summer. This was my first summer having to sit through classes on sunny days, living vicariously through my friends who are now graduated or get a full four-month summer because they are still in school. It honestly flew by. As soon as I felt like I was getting back in the groove and ready to start putting my full attention back on school, I realized here we are at September 1st with only one month left to go!

It was nice to have this Monday off, I’m sure most people took advantage of the long weekend by heading home to see family and friends if they lived close enough or having some local adventure. But August was a crazy month for me (with two weddings on back-to-back weekends and an unexpected trip home for a death in the family). So I was very appreciative to just have an extra day to look at the month I have ahead of me, and see where I need to focus my attention for school and make a plan to tackle everything coming up.

This was also my first summer in the Midwest, and I have to say I am a little excited for fall. This humidity was something I was really not used to, and, as I mentioned before, I was traveling home a lot for weddings and such in August. And every time I came back to the Quad Cities, as soon as I would step off the plane, I was always shocked by how humid and hot it really gets here. I did enjoy some of the warm weather, but being in school during the summer just doesn’t let you take full advantage of all the spare time summer usually offers for hanging out around a lake or a pool and having barbeques and bonfires with your friends.

It wasn’t all that bad though, and, like I said, it really flew by. That is something I am thankful for because that means I am just that much closer to becoming a doctor!

Cheers Eh!


First Exam of 3rd Trimester!

Even though we are already about a month into the trimester, we had our first exam. I always think it’s funny how for the first month there is nothing really going on at school, so you don’t really feel any pressure to study or be productive. And then all of a sudden in one week you have an exam in every class you have.

Being in 3rd trimester now, though, I have learned my lesson. I have fallen into a groove where I feel like I am ahead of the game. I kept on top of my studying so I am more ready for the bombardment of exams I have in the upcoming weeks than I would have been previously.  Also I have two weddings over the next two weekends, so I was forced to do some studying ahead of time–because I know I won’t be able to utilize the weekends I am gone to get as much studying done as I would if I was here at home all day.

The first test went well! It was in pathology and I really enjoyed how our professor (Dr. Roeker) did an overview of the notes on YouTube so I could sit at home and listen to him explaining things that maybe I missed in class. I found it really helpful to have a complete overview of all the material on the exam in a few hours instead of how it is in class over the weeks prior.

It makes me think about recording the lectures and listening to them at home that night or on the weekend and going over the notes with the lecture so I have them in front of me and the teachers explanations there to listen to as well.

Do you record lectures? I would love some feedback on it if you do!

Cheers, eh


The middle of the week!

Dr. Barber, my microbiology teacher likes to joke that Wednesdays are the only day of the week that she really gets our full attention and interest. She claims that Monday is no good because we are all just coming off the weekend and not really ready to be back in school. And then Tuesday is better, maybe at the same level of attention as Wednesday (which is a good day because we are all back in the groove of school and paying attention). And then Thursday is a big drop off again because we are all just looking forward to the weekend. Then Friday–if there is class–is pretty much a wash because nobody wants to be there.

I think for me it progresses throughout the week. Monday is great because I just had a break, so I’m feeling rested and ready to tackle a new week. And then Tuesday and Wednesday are fairly good. By Wednesday I’m losing focus a bit. Then Thursday is a struggle, and Friday is really tough. Especially if there were exams during the week, and you spent every spare minute you had cramming information into your brain. And that on top of staying up late and getting up early just takes a toll on your mind and body, which makes for a tough Friday.

I think Fridays would be easier for me if all my classes were in the morning and we were done with them all in a row and got out early in the day. Instead of my schedule now where I have class then a break and then class then a break. Each break seems to make it harder and harder to want to stay for the next class!

But looking back, we are already one month done with this trimester, so if the next one goes as fast as this one, we will be hallway done before I know it!

Good luck with the rest of the week everyone!!

And of course, cheers, eh!


One week in the books

(written 7/11 – we’re still catching up on posts!)

Well that does it for the 1st week of 3rd trimester!

I am already enjoying this trimester a lot with some new classes that have some interesting material! I love pathology and microbiology and immunology and learning about how we get sick or injured or infected and then how our bodies are capable of fighting it off and healing.

I think now that I have been in the program for 2 trimesters maybe it is seeming a bit more relaxed because I am starting to get the hang of things. Most of the professors I have this trimester I have had a class with before, and I have a pretty good idea of their style of teaching and what their exams are going to look like, so I feel like I am doing a better job of focusing in on what they are saying and what they emphasize that might be on an exam.

I also feel like I have personally improved my skills. Nunchuck skills, bo hunting skills, computer hacking skills … No, I’m just kidding! I feel like I have learned better how to stay focused in class ,and I have learned what type of studying works for me and just improving my ability to absorb large amount of information and stuff it into every little sulcus and gyri I have. It helps that a lot of our classes are build on top of classes we have already had, so there is some review as well as expanding on things we already know about and making more sense of them or tying them in to other things!

Maybe it has to do with the good weather and the fact I can study outdoors, and getting up in the morning isn’t that hard because the sun has usually beat me up even at 6 a.m.! And staying up later isn’t so bad either because the sun stays up later, so it doesn’t feel like 1 a.m. at 7. The days seem like there are a few more hours, which I could always use!

Have a great day, everyone!

Cheers, eh!


New roommate

Canadian flag

Canadian flag

So a new trimester has brought me a new roommate! At first this was daunting to me, you know having to plan to live with a new person that you don’t know at all and wondering if your personalities will mesh and if you will get along. But as soon as I met her, I knew things would be just fine!

My new roommate is just starting out here at Palmer, which will benefit us both, I think. She will get plenty of hand me downs and help at home with schoolwork as well as all the inside information and tips and tricks on how to survive our hectic lifestyle (or at least a guide as to how I am managing). And for me the benefit is having someone who is fresh and new to the program who is excited and motivated, which helps get me excited and reminds me of why I first started here as well. It will also help introduce me to a new crowd and make some friends in a different trimester than my own!

Also in our house (there are three of us) we had a 2 -1 Canadian to American ratio, so I am pretty excited to say we can keep up the majority votes in the house going to my home country because the new roomy is also Canadian!

People are continually moving in and out of our lives here at Palmer, whether it be roommates, classmates, professors or just friends. But this is usually due to the success and progression of everyone through the program and moving on to become a doctor! So although we may only get to know people for a short time, we are making a connections that may last a lifetime as colleagues in our amazing profession!

To all the new friends who I have just met and to those I know and are already moving into the real world, it’s been a pleasure and I can’t wait to work alongside you (near or far) as a chiropractor in the future!

Cheers, eh


Day Off … Not

So I’m writing this on Memorial Day, which, yes, it was a holiday from school since there were no classes. But that didn’t stop me from spending time at the school. With finals approaching fast, my Monday was spend in the lab at P.A.S.S. preparing for Spinal and Gross Anatomy lab finals.

Lab finals are typically held before finals week, which is nice because it gets those out of the way and means I won’t have to worry about getting in to the lab to study during finals week when I already have other exams to study for.

Because the lab hours are limited it, gets pretty busy in there and so you want to get in the earlier the better to start seeing things and getting familiar with them so when the lab gets busy you don’t have to fight with 10 other people to see one pro section you were hoping to work on.

I am getting really excited to be done with labs and not have to stay at the school super late and have two things to think about for one class and to be able to pass on my stinky coat to a first trimester student who will need it, because we won’t have to be in the lab again after second trimester unless you decide to become a P.A.S.S. lab tutor.

On the flip side, I know it is pretty rare to get the opportunity I did to work in a cadaver lab and be able to learn as much as I have about the human body and see first hand the variation and amazing things the body does to work and heal and function. We, as chiropractic students, are among a small percentage of the population that is learning about the things we are and getting to see the things we do!

Back to the books!



Talent Show!

Josh and Collin

Josh and Collin

Monday we held a talent show. There were seven acts competing to be sent to Life Wests’ “Chiropractic Has Talent” competition in August. This will be the second year the “Chiropractic Has Talent” competition will run. Last year there were 10 chiropractic schools from all over the country that competed in it. There can only be one representative from each school, so to decide who should represent Palmer’s Davenport Campus we held our own competition.

We had all kinds of different talents from ukulele to guitar, to drums and comedy, poem writing and even a duet. Everyone who competed did a very good job. It was really cool to see another side of your classmates. We had four faculty judges who helped us decide who they thought should go to the big competition, and the votes were unanimous for our winners.

Talent Show group

Talent Show group

The winners of the competition were two singers/guitar players, Josh and Collin, who are super talented! They have previously won the talent competition at Homecoming, and I am sure will be representing Palmer really well in California this August.

I wish I had more musical talents. My mom tried to get me more into music and art when I was a kid, but I was too interested in playing sports to sit down and practice those things.

I wish our winners good luck as they go on to the big competition! They could be winning up to $15,000 if they get first place!

Cheers all,


Club hour

Join the club!

Join the club!

On Tuesdays and Fridays at 9:20 a.m. at Palmer, we have a club hour. This is a time designated for students to attend a club of their choice.  There are probably around 40 clubs that students can attend depending on their interest. Clubs are not mandatory to attend, they are simply an opportunity to learn more about certain techniques and improve your skills as a chiropractor!

On Tuesdays, I have Student Council meetings where we meet with all the representatives from each class and the executive council at the school to discuss events, bring up issues or ideas for improvement at Palmer. And sometimes we have guest speakers that let us know about what is going on in their club and if they need funding, or certain departments come in to share things with us they would like to pass on to the student body.

On Friday’s, I attend Motion Palpation Club. In this club, we get the opportunity to do some hands-on work, feeling for certain landmarks (regarding the spine) and practicing feeling those landmarks throughout a motion. This club has really helped me get some confidence in actually feeling for something and knowing what I am feeling. At first you have no idea what you are doing and you don’t really feel anything, and then as you learn how to touch the landmark properly and put it through the correct type of motion, you start to feel it and how it approximates or moves in regards to the things around it.

What clubs do you attend? And if you haven’t tried out any yet, give them a try! I personally think the more you expose yourself to, the more you will learn and figure out what you like or don’t like and see what works for you! Why not give them all a try while they are free and fun!