Hey hey!  I haven’t forgotten about my blog.  😉  School + work = utter chaos.

Musing #1.
After sitting at a C- in my med-surg class for weeks, I finally boosted my grade by passing version two of the medical surgical HESI.  For anyone who is preparing for nursing school or HESIs, I’d like to recommend a few resources.

1)  RegisteredNurseRNshe has a Youtube channel and a website.  Both are full of excellent (and most importantly, FREE!) resources, and she explains concepts in a way that is neither condescending nor overly complicated.  If I hadn’t found her tic-tac-toe method of assessing arterial blood gases, I probably would still be absolutely clueless.

2)  Davis’ Med-Surg Success: A Q&A Review, Applying Critical Thinking to Test Taking – currently available for $39.76 on Amazon.  I’m not sure whether it’s the latest edition, but it has been immensely helpful this semester.  Medical-surgical classes are ridiculously broad, so you really need to focus on the basics of patient safety and care to succeed.  This book provides you with hundreds of questions over a variety of topics, along with rationales and study tips.  Note: there are several mistakes, so double-check with your instructor and class content if something doesn’t seem quite right.

3)  Saunders Comprehensive Review for the NCLEX-RN Examination – $63.60 new, $39.99 used.  While it’s definitely not a replacement for your dependable med-surg textbook, it helps highlight interventions and stuff you NEED to know about different concepts, disease processes, and patient care.  Also, probably about 3lbs lighter than a typical med-surg book.

4)  Mosby’s Pharmacology Memory NoteCards: Visual, Mnemonic, & Memory Aids for Nurses – $21.35 on Amazon!  What a steal!  If you’re a visual learner, or adore mnemonics, this is a handy study guide for learning the most common medications.  Pharmacology is a pain in the you-know-what, this can make it easier, and dare I say… fun?

Musing #2.
As most of you know, I made the commitment to eat cleaner and be more active.  Guess what.  It’s not easy when you’re in nursing school.  You gotta have action along with intent.  Soooo… I made it simple for myself.  While looking up recipes, I consider the cost and simplicity, along with the nutritional content.  Fiber + fat + protein = happy Jo who isn’t starving half the time.  One of my favorites is a simple vegetarian tortilla casserole.  I know you’re probably thinking, “HEY, veggie dishes aren’t satisfying,” but seriously… this casserole is the bomb-diggity.  Plus, if you’re not a fan of some of the veggies, you can easily modify the recipe!  Corn tortillas, yellow squash, big ripe tomatoes, salsa con verde (I promise it’s not terribly spicy), mozzarella + parmesan, a pound of spinach… is your mouth watering yet?  One serving size is a full QUARTER of the casserole, and contains a mere 370 calories, while packing a punch as far as fiber (5g) and protein (14g) go.  I treat myself with a dollop of sour cream on top (full-fat, I’m a rebel)!

Musing #3.
The last couple months, I’ve intentionally pulled back from social activities and communications in an effort to focus on personal growth and academic ventures.  While certainly not a good long-term strategy, it has given me time to assess where I am at in life, and what I need to do to achieve my goals and sustain feelings of contentment, without any distractions.  I’ve realized that I possess more inner strength than I ever thought possible, and my emotions and feelings are valid – I don’t need to hide anything.  Struggles, ambitions, fears, hopes… it’s all in the open.

Musing #4.
My cat is the cutest cat in the whole world.  Just look at that face and adorable feet!

image-61294

Musing #5.
Despite struggling with insomnia for my entire adult life, I basically slept through Thursday and Friday.  Thursday, I dragged myself off of the futon at 5:30pm to hang out with a friend, then went back to bed around midnight.  Friday, I dozed till 2:30pm.  I’m on the struggle bus this semester, but our last final is a week from Monday!  Sadly, I missed the 2 nice days of the week.  Yesterday, various parts of Iowa had tornado warnings, thunderstorm warnings, and winter storm warnings.  C’mon spring, we don’t want to immediately skip to summer and sweltering hot days.  Enough with this 20-30 degree nonsense and intermittent snow.

I don’t know how to write a suitable conclusion for a blog, so… see you later, I guess?

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