The last month has been packed with rugby, exams and preparation for finals! Even though it has been really busy, I have had so much fun with my teammates during practices and our travels, and I’ve enjoyed learning more hands-on experience in classes and different techniques.
With this past month being hectic with rugby and classes, it was hard to focus the morning of October 2 – the day our Part 1 NBCE scores were announced! I was extremely nervous to look and I was too shy to check them during class with my fellow students all around. I decided during my later break between classes to find a quiet, empty table right outside the buildings and check them by myself. I’m really close with my mom so I thought it would be best to have her on the phone with me while I find out my scores. It felt like forever for the page to load but when it did I was screaming inside! I passed all six exams on NBCE Part 1. My mom and I even had a few happy tears over the phone. Of course, I called my dad and siblings afterwards to let them know the good news! It was such a relief off my shoulders to have that happy news after waiting six weeks to find out. It motivated me to finish off this trimester strong and do the best I can.
It’s common for every class to celebrate their “half-way” to finishing their degree here at Palmer, and our class decided to have a taco party and bonfire at a classmate’s house! It was so much fun to just relax and enjoy some time together joking around and eating some delicious food! Our classmate Molly, who hosted the event, has dogs, goats and horses, so it was fun to pet and feed all the animals. For some students it was more of an uncommon experience since they normally don’t see goats and horses that often, if at all. A lot of the students jumped in and played some yard games like corn hole/bean bag toss and threw around a football. During the trimester our time with each other is usually spent studying or in classes, so it was fun to be able to relax with everyone. Our class is a smaller one so we know each other fairly well, but that night we were able to get to know fellow classmates who we might not talk to as much. But since this event was right before finals, I had to make sure I spent some time that weekend studying and preparing for my classes!
My classmates and me (fourth from left in front row) at our half-way party.
With our rugby season being really busy this trimester it has been more difficult to travel home and see family so my mom decided to take a trip down to Davenport for a week to visit! We had the weekend off from rugby so I knew it would be a perfect time for my mom and I to explore the area. The only major exam I had was a practical in my cervicals class the next week but I knew I could get good practice with set-ups with my mom. One of my goals during my time in Iowa is to find the best fish fry and we found one of our top favorites that Friday.
In Wisconsin, it is common to go out to dinner on Friday nights for a fish fry. You get your fish, salad, coleslaw, bread, and usually another side of your choice. Since this is one of my favorite meals, I like to find the best fish fries in my area. I did a little research and I found a restaurant called “Prairie Grille” attached to a Best Western Hotel. They had all-you-can-eat fish fry, home-breaded fish, homemade dill sauce and the traditional sides. It was so delicious, my mom and I felt like we were in heaven! Afterwards we decided to go see “It” at the theatre to settle down our stomachs and relax. This movie has been one my favorites since I was young and my mom and I were so excited for the remake. It went beyond our high expectations; we were very pleased with the acting and the effects.
The next morning, we got up early and went to the farmer’s market to buy some groceries, goodies and breakfast! I recently won two free breakfasts with a Facebook contest at Cottage Bagels so my mom and I decided we needed to try it. We were extremely satisfied with the bagels, cream cheeses and egg scramble that we had. (See us with our great breakfasts in the photo below.) Since we were so full we needed to walk around the market to help. That Saturday the weather was perfect so we decided to take a drive to the Maquoketa Caves State Park to do some hiking. I have heard about these caves from friends here and there but we were so amazed! There were so many caves and the area was so big. We spent three to four hours visiting some caves but mostly hiking around the area. We did get lost once but we were okay with it because every direction you turn, there was more beautiful nature and scenery. By the end of our hike we were breaking a sweat! On our drive home we made a last-minute decision to do some antique shopping in Le Claire, Iowa. We were able to walk around the town and look around at some small shops. Antique Archeology is the home of American Pickers’ Mike Wolf and we made sure to put that on the list of shops to check out. Since our day was filled with adventures we decided to take it easy the rest of the night and just watch a movie back at home.
It was hard to say goodbye to my mom as she packed up to travel back to Wisconsin. She had to leave by the early afternoon so she would be able to get some stuff done around the house before a work-filled week. This left my evening open to practice some set-ups for my cervicals practical and also read through some notes for classes.