Saturday, December 31, 2016

Residency Review: 18 months done.

A year ago I wrote a residency review - the first six months condensed to a few paragraphs - it was an honest look at how I/we were doing with the adjustment to residency life. It wasn't pretty. Now feels like a good time to do another review. A where are we now/how are we doing post of sorts. Currently we are halfway through Joe's second year of residency. Which is also the HALFWAY POINT for his entire residency!!! We are halfway done. Wahoo!!! And we are still swimming. Our heads are above water so I'm calling that a success. In fact the last year has overall been far better than the first six months of residency. My parents came and stayed with us for two months last winter. That definitely helped! And then over the summer the kids and I went on a 5 week road trip to visit family and friends in Minnesota and Wisconsin. And that by far was THE BEST thing for my mental health. To just step back and take a break from it all. Residency life can be all consuming and daunting. It was good to escape it all and see that life exists outside of this weird little residency bubble that we live in. I was able to come back refreshed, energized and thanks to some good thought-provoking conversations with friends with a new sense of purpose. I came back to Texas with a brand new mission. I was going to make sure that I was reaching out to as many residency people (new and old) as possible. I didn't want anyone to feel as lonely as I did the first year. I wanted people to have someone to talk to and somewhere to go when residency gets tough. I wanted to be available and welcoming to people. I had a newfound purpose. 

And Joe? He continues to excel. Second year is when things get real real for the residents. They are promoted to "upper level" resident and they are responsible for their own patients + helping the interns & med students. It took him a while to get the hang of balancing all those things. But now he is loving the added responsibility. He continues to be in his element at work.

And the kids? They are doing well. They have grown accustomed to Joe's ever-changing schedule. Or as best as anyone can:) This year I'd say has been better for them too because Joe's schedule has been more conducive to family time. Instead of having "weekends" in middle of the week Joe has had some weekends off on ACTUAL weekends!!! In fact once this Fall he had two ACTUAL weekends off in a row! It was amazing! We even went on a little mini vacation one weekend. (And by vacation I mean we drove a couple hours away stayed in a hotel for one night and visited a zoo. Wild & crazy times!)

PS On the drive home from the trip (pictured above) I was patting myself on the back and telling Joe that I thought I was doing so much better with handling residency this year. He then kindly reminded me that he had all of his "easy" rotations for the first half of the year and it will be the second half of the year that is challenging. So much for feeling proud of myself! Two trauma blocks and come!

Friday, December 30, 2016

Seven Quick Takes, round 3.

Linking up once again!

1. Now that I am finally finally finally done with my required CME for the 2014-2016 cycle I can resume regular life stuff like blogging and laundry and feeding my children balanced meals. I no longer have to listen to lectures all day every day! My kids loved hearing all the updates on HIV, 

Hidradenitis suppurativa, COPD, and childhood immunizations while playing monopoly. I'm sure of it;)

Why I wait until the December 31st deadline is staring me in the face to do my CME I don't know?!? Next time I'm doing better. Maybe:) I might just have a New Years resolution for 2017. 

2. I will write more about Christmas with my brother's family and add more pictures shortly. Patience. But first this little Christmas story...

3. A few days before Christmas a resident sent me a snap on Snapchat asking "How are my kitties?" with a cute cat filter. I looked at the snap (i.e. a picture of her with a cat face) and then carried on cooking a meal to feed a small army. Totally disregarding it. It was the next day while scrolling through Facebook I saw a completely unrelated picture of someone feeding their cats and I remembered...

4. I was supposed to be "cat sitting" for the resident. When she asked about her kitties she meant her actual cats that I was supposed to be feeding!!! Oops. I'm too embarrassed to admit to how many days I neglected those cats. But alls well that ends well, right? The cats were fed and watered and liter changed. They survived. And I will NEVER volunteer for that task again. Because clearly I'm an unfit cat sitter. 

5. Yesterday we invited (child-less) friends over for a late dinner and a fire - to relax and chat once the kids were in bed. The kids on the other hand had completely different plans....

I swear we didn't mean to bait and switch our friends but we totally did! All those new Christmas nerf guns were just waiting for their first battle! FYI - the adults totally won. 

6. My Christmas gifts all had a very distinct theme this year...exercise clothes, a yoga mat and a pull up bar. And I've actually already used and enjoyed them all! Clearly I'm a new person. Never before have I exercised for fun. But since trying baby-wearing Zumba and joining a Mommy & Me group I'm hooked! 

(The kids after Mommy & Me class this morning. No pictures of sweaty ole' me thank you very much). 

7. The other day in between changing diapers, washing dishes, and doing CME I took a small break to make my debut as a shirt model...
For my friend's etsy shop. In exchange for taking the pictures I got the monogrammed shirt for free! Seemed like a sweet deal to me:) Hannah later informed me that I should have changed my shirt because it was longer than my shorties. Clearly she has no eye for fashion! Either that or I have no right being a model. It's likely the latter. 

Thursday, December 22, 2016

A Cousin Christmas

There has been an invasion...

And we couldn't be happier!!! Family time is the best time! Christmas morning is going to fun around here this year:)

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Seven (not so) Quick Takes. Round 2

1. After we got our tree decorated I was feeling all Christmas-y and decided to host a spur of the moment Christmas themed play date with my residency people. All I did was invite people over, find a few activities to do with the kids (with supplies I already owned) and open my doors and the moms and kids showed up. One mom brought sugar cookies to decorate. Another brought supplies to make Grinch kabobs. And yet others brought snacks to share. It was messy and loud and slightly chaotic. 

And we all had a great time! What I love most is that residency people are so easy to please. We just like spending time together...letting our kids play...chatting. We don't need anything fancy. No Pinterest perfect party needed to have a good time here:) We just make do. 

2. Like I said it was a spur of the moment idea to host this play date. And while I loved having the play date I wish I had looked at my calendar first because I scheduled it for the same day I was doing a craft fair with a friend. For weeks I've been busy sewing bibs and bow ties. Oh and tutus. Sewing like a mad woman all leading up to the craft fair. And then I almost forgot about it. Oops! 

I only sold four bibs. Womp. Womp. Womp. I guess I should have focused more on my CME and less on sewing. Because of course now it's the end of the year and I'm cramming to get all the hours in I need to stay certified. Why? Why do I procrastinate so much?!?!

3. Charlotte is becoming quite the little writer. She writes herself lists of things to do. It'd be terrible if she skipped a step in the room cleaning process:) Best to have a check list! She also likes to write notes. For herself and other people. I love finding her writings all over the house these days.  Here are just few examples of ones she has left for me recently...

I promise they aren't all mad notes! Some are quite loving. I just can't find any of those at the moment. 

4. Last week I cleaned out the van. The carseats were already uninstalled (in order to return a grill to friends) so it seemed like as good as a time as any to get it done! Two days AFTER I had vacuumed it Charlotte exclaimed "MOM! The floor. It's actually clean. You can see the floor!" It made me laugh. And yes my van floor is usually atrocious. But the best part was Isaiah saying to Charlotte "That's a compliment AND an insult Char Char."  He's not usually the most attuned to other's feelings so I was touched that he realized that. Though I wasn't actually insulted. 

5. Immediately after cleaning out the van Joe and I dropped the kids off at our church - where the 8th graders were babysitting for the evening as a fundraiser - and we went to his residency Christmas party. 

Kid-less and fancy free! It happens so rarely that it feels downright divine...until your husband chooses to sit at a table right next to an entire group of small loud children!!! I was less than pleased. (Don't get me wrong I love the children...just not so much on my date night.) 

6. Last night the children from our church walked to an assisted living facility to sing Christmas carols to the residents. On the drive to church I was explaining to my kids that I wanted them to wear their jackets for the walk but once we arrived to the assisted living they could give them to me. (Seems self explanatory, right?) Mostly I wanted the girls to take off their jackets because I didn't want their pretty dresses covered up. But when they asked why I told them it's because assisted living facilities and nursing homes are usually quite warm for the elderly people who tend to get cold easily. (Because if I had told Hannah my real reason she would have refused.). Isaiah then jumped into the conversation and informed his sisters that "nursing homes always smell really good too!!"  He was dead serious. I just about died! I wonder if he likes the smell of hospitals too?!?

7. Levi has learned to say his name. And it's ridiculously cute! I love hearing it so much that I find as many questions as possible to ask him in which he has to answer with his name "Lee-by". He's also started putting two words together in sentences...more like commands. Tonight he found my fedora. He handed it to me and told me that I "need it". How could I refuse? I wore the hat to book club tonight. 

Sad Lee-by. His mean mommy wouldn't let him play with the sewing machine. How rude!

Bonus #8. After living here for a year and a half I should be used this by now but I'm not...

Joe was mowing the lawn in shorts and a tshirt mid-December! Meanwhile all our family and friends in Minnesota are shoveling snow and talking about the below zero temperatures. And here we are going to parks to play and doing school outside. In December!! I'm not sure I'll ever get used to this.