Monday, December 7, 2009

Creighton Interview

I was ecstatic to receive an email from Creighton University on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving:



Dear Sarah,

Thank you for your interest in Creighton University and our Doctor of Pharmacy
program!

We are currently in the process of reviewing your application for admission and
would like to extend you an interview offer. This is a required part of the
application process.


The following interview option is available. As there are many components to
the interview, you must be available for the entire time period of 11:45 a.m.-5

p.m.

Friday, December 4th, 2009

To reserve your spot for your interview, please respond to this e-mail within 2

weeks. Confirmation information will follow. Questions may be directed to

Lindsay Johnson, Senior Admission Counselor, at (402) 280-2662.

After an interview date has been confirmed, additional information will be
provided regarding the schedule for your visit to Creighton, local

accommodations, and travel.

Thank you and we look forward to hearing from you.


As you can imagine I was thrilled! They were waiting on my Oct. PCAT scores to make a decision and so I assumed my scores must have been decent enough to extend such an offer. The only problem was figuring out how to get there on such short notice and not paying an arm and a leg. Thankfully my father-in-law was gracious enough to donate his airline miles so that my plane ticket only cost us a small sum of $105.

I flew out of Atlanta early Friday morning and arrived in Omaha, Nebraska 2 hours before the schedule of events. I got to my hotel room and down to the waiting area 40 minutes before I had to be at Creighton and arrived 15 minutes early. They gave each of us a bag, a binder full of information, and a name tag. We sat through a presentations about Creighton and what we had to look forward to. We then separated into 6 small groups and went to learn more about the school. My group consisted of students that were applying for the distance pathway. We sat through a session that showed us what we would be doing online and we even got to talk to a distance student online and ask questions about the program. After another session that explained to us the equipment we would be getting, a Tablet PC and Ipod touch (3rd year), we finally separated to do our interviews. I apparently interviewed with the chair of the admissions committee! I was so nervous but I answered all their questions and hopefully they liked me enough to accept me! Once the interviews were over we had one more session and then we were taken back to our hotel rooms and the day was over. They said to look for a letter in the mail in 3 weeks! We may get something sooner but they said to give them at least 3 weeks. So here's to hoping that the letter I get tells me that I will be starting Pharmacy School Fall 2010!

Here are some pictures I took on my trip:

PCAT

I retook the PCAT for the 3rd time in October. I was a little more anxious to get these scores back and I must say I'm very happy that I did really well this time! I guess that's why Creighton sent me an interview invite before I even got home to check my scores! This go round I got a 74 composite score and I needed at least a 60 to get into Creighton. Anything above 70 is pretty good! I'm a little surprised with my scores because I didn't study as much as I had hoped to and I was still able to well. Yay me!

New Posts Coming Soon!

We've been really busy these last 3 weeks with vacation and an interview! So be on the look out for some new posts soon with lots of pictures!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

PayPal

My mom has set up a paypal account so that people who wanted to donate money to them could. Here is a link if you would like to help them out!

Her email address is: rosesim5@comcast.net


Send Money

Send Money From Outside USA

Be sure to select the Personal Tab and Gift Button. Thank you everyone for your love and support!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Clarification and Idea

I need to clarify that it is my, Sarah's, father that was diagnosed with multiple myeloma. Apparently a few people saw the blog posting and thought it was David's dad, so just clarifying that it is Sarah's father. Also if you read this blog it is mostly me, Sarah, that is posting because David is too busy with work! I also wanted to post because my family has decided to go to Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, Utah. Hunstman has an excellent myeloma treatment facility and are one of a few places that does a tandem transplant. The only problem is that my mother has to figure out where they are going to stay and how they are going to come up with the money for their expenses. I decided that I wanted to help out by setting up a paypal account so that if people wanted to donate money they could. I also thought it would be a great idea to do some sort of a fundraiser/raffle/auction. If any of you would like to help me out or have any ideas for me I would greatly appreciate your help.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

My dad

As some of you may or may not know my dad was recently diagnosed with multiple myeloma. Multiple Myeloma is a cancer of the plasma cells (or cells that make antibodies). Here's an explanation:

Multiple myeloma is the most common of a group of diseases called plasma cell neoplasms. Plasma cell neoplasms result when certain cells in the blood (called plasma cells) become cancerous. Plasma cells are made in the bone marrow by white blood cells called lymphocytes. The plasma cells make antibodies, which help fight infection in the body.

Usually, bone marrow contains only about two percent plasma cells. But when a person has multiple myeloma, the body keeps making more and more abnormal plasma cells, called myeloma cells, and they make more and more antibodies. These extra cells do not help fight off infection; instead, they stop the body from making normal infection-fighting antibodies and crowd out normal cells.

The cancer cells collect in the bone marrow and slowly destroy the bone. Myeloma cells also trigger the release of bone-weakening chemicals that lead to bone destruction and bone pain and can collect in the bone to make small tumors called plasmacytomas.

Right now he's at stage 2 and has had bone damage and is in a lot of pain right now because he has a spinal compression of the spine at his T6 vertebrae, holes in both thigh bones, pitting on his ribs, and damage to different areas of the spine. The plasmacytomas are what caused the bone destruction/damage and the doctors are hoping to reverse the damage and stop it from happening any more. He is currently on pain meds and will be taking cancer drugs as soon as the insurance company approves it (a month supply of the pills cost over $8000). My dad will also eventually undergo chemo and be given stem cell transplants. I'm extremely grateful for my background in Biology right now because I can help my family better understand what is going on and why the doctors are giving my dad certain meds. I just pray that everything works out for my dad and that he can still have many happy years to enjoy being with our family. This whole situation has definitely made me think of what is most important in my life and helped me to make more definite decisions on what I want to do in the next few years. I'm most worried about my little sister because I want her to be able to have her dad around when she graduate high school, gets married, and graduates college. I know my dad is a strong person and a fighter. He will do whatever it takes to put this cancer in remission. His motto: "I'm hoping to pull a Lance". My dad loves to cycle and he is a huge fan of Lance Armstrong. He's hoping to beat the cancer just like Lance did. I love you dad and we are all praying for you and hoping you beat this!


What we've been up to

These past few months have been pretty busy in our household! David has been going to different places training and is constantly busy. I have been keeping busy with work and getting things in order for the future. On the 17th I took the PCAT for what will hopefully be the last time! I submitted my application to Creighton University for next Fall and I'm hoping that I will hear from the school soon with some good news! Next month David and I will be taking a trip to Vegas so we can drive to CA and climb Mt. Whitney! This will be my first backpacking trip with David. We have purchased most of our gear for the trip and with every package that is delivered I get more and more excited/nervous. I'm mostly looking forward to the days after our climb when we will spend a couple nights in Vegas. I've never been and want to see what all the hype is about. If any of you have a suggestion of something we can do let me know! We are looking forward to spending some time together away from the distractions of the world. I've been busy with work most days and when I'm not busy with work I have started some sewing projects. I'm currently working on a quilt and making cute baby blankets! I'll post some picture soon.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

PCAT

Here we go again...another round of PCAT and applications. This time I am determined to make a study schedule and stick with it. I also want to try and turn in my application before the end of this month...so I better get to writing my personal essay.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Wisdom Tooth Extraction

Monday morning at 8:30am I had my wisdom teeth surgically removed. David got permission to take the day off and drove me to and from the appointment. When we arrived I paid for my portion of the surgery ($477...much better than $800 I was quoted over 4 years ago). Then David sat in the waiting room and I was taken to the back. They sat me in the chair. Gave me something to sign that explained what they were going to be doing and the risks involved, ibuprofen, some water to swallow the ibuprofen, some mouth was to swish and spit out and then she put the nitrous oxide mask on my face. At first there was nothing coming out of the mask and then she turned it on but it was up way to high b/c it was blowing nitrous oxide at my nose, it was hard to breath! I told her about it and then she turned it down to a more comfortable level. I then started feeling a little whoozy. The doctor came in and said "You aren't pregnant or anything crazy like that are you?". Of course I said no. Then he left and the nurse asked me how I was...I told her a little whoozy and she was going to turn my mask down again but the other lady had already done so and I told her that the other lady had turned it down. She then told me she was going to put the IV in my arm. Asked me which arm they usually used and then handed me a ball to squeeze. Once I was done squeezing the ball she told me to hold a fist and then said I was going to feel a pinch. It really didn't hurt to get the IV in. That was (I think) the first time I ever had an IV. She then told meshe was going to inject some stuff into my IV at which point I felt a weird sensation in my arm and the next thing I knew I was out like a light. The next thing I remember is someone putting my glasses on my face and David helping me out to the car; with a towel on my head because it was raining. I then slipped in and out of consciousness from the office to post (David was trying to get my prescriptions for pain meds, anti nausea meds, and mouthwash filled), post didn't have one of them so he drove to Walmart and I stayed in the car and slept. Finally he came out with my prescriptions and we headed to Wendy's so David could get lunch and me some frosty's for later. We came home and I slept some more. I didn't really feel any pain the first day because of the IV meds still being in my system and taking the ibuprofen and vicodin prescribed. The second day was worse. I couldn't do anything because I was so dizzy from the vicodin and lack of food (had to eat mushy foods). David came home from work at around 1pm and took care of me. I then returned to work on Wednesday and stopped taking the vicodin the night before because I wouldn't be able to drive if I did and David had left that morning to start WLC so he couldn't take me either. So for the last 3 days I have been in pain, mostly when I sleep. I did take some ibuprofen for the pain and that helped. I also couldn't open my jaw wide enough to eat anything besides liquids and mushy stuff. Yesterday I was finally able to open my mouth enough and I used a syringe to squirt water into the holes in my lower jaw. That was the nastiest thing ever because food from Tuesday came out of the holes. No wonder my right side of my face hurt so much!!!, there was rotting food in there, sick! Today is Sunday and I feel much, much better! I go back tomorrow for my follow up. I'm just glad to finally have my wisdom teeth gone and to not have to worry about doing that anymore.

Homemade Mac and Cheese

Yesterday I made homemade macaroni and cheese from this recipe. It is my favorite mac and cheese recipe ever! The cheese can be a little expensive but trust me you won't be disappointed.

The Ingredients:


Cooking the elbow macaroni so that it's al dente (2-3 mins less than directions on box):
Shredded the Cheese and mixed it all together:

Cubed the bread and poured melted butter over top:

Flour ready and waiting, spices ready and waiting:

Heating up the butter:


Butter starting to bubble:

Adding flour to butter to make a roux:

Mixing the flour/butter with the heated up milk until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon:


Add the spices:
Add all but 1.5 cups of the cheese:


Mix until cheese melts and it becomes a cheesy sauce (Yummy!):

Add the cooked macaroni:

Voila the mac and cheese:
Butter pans, in this case I used mini loaf pans so I could freeze the leftovers for future eating:


Pour in the mac and cheese:

Now this is the fun part, you can lick the spoon and stick your finger in the cheese sauce left on the side :D :
Sprinkle the reserved cheese on top:


I decided to use my trusty hand blender to make finer bread crumbs since it's hard for me to chew at the moment (wisdom tooth extraction):

Sprinkle bread cubes or bread crumbs on top of cheese:


Now they are done I can put aluminum foil on top and stick all but one in the freezer:

Put one in the oven on 375 F for 20 mins or less:
Here is the finished product....delicious macaroni and cheese! Now that's what I call comfort food!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Chocolate Soufflé

I love Food Network! It is one of my favorite shows and websites. I decided to make chocolate soufflé the other day because someone on a tv show made it and I hadn't made it in a few years. I used this recipe to make the soufflé and it was soo good! The recipe made a total of six soufflé which was more than I needed for the two of us but I read somewhere that you could keep the soufflé unbaked in the fridge for up to 3 days! So for the past three nights we've (mostly me, cause David didn't eat his until last night) had Chocolate soufflé for dessert! The nice thing about this dessert is that a person with a gluten allergy; like my mom, nana, and sister; can eat it because there is no flour. I didn't take any picture of the soufflé :( that I made but I will the next time I make it. Just be sure that your ingredients are room temperature and that you follow the directions exactly otherwise the soufflé won't puff.

PS: And speaking of Food Network...David and I are going to see Alton Brown in Atlanta for his 10th Anniversary show!!! I can't wait! (And hopefully David can go, he might be in training, otherwise I'll have to bring someone else along).

Crock Pot dinners

I generally work the late shift at the Pharmacy so I don't get home until a little after 9pm. When I do have work I try to put something in the crock pot for dinner so I won't have to come home and cook, plus 9pm is really late to be eating dinner as is. This is what I did last time I had dinner in the crock pot.

First I sliced the assortment of left over veggies that I had in the fridge (red pepper, green pepper, tomato, onion, garlic, carrots). I placed them on a piece of foil and sprinkled with some salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder, oregano, and thyme (I think next time I will leave out the thyme and oregano ;)

I know some people hate cooking in the crockpot because they are hard to clean. That's why I buy reynolds slow cooker bags. You can find them in the grocery store near the ziploc bags and oven bags. They have come in so handy and I'm glad I discovered them!

Next I washed and sliced some potatoes, sprinkled them with salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder, and added about 1 tbsp of butter.

Then I folded up my pouches of veggies and potatoes so that they couldn't leak.

In the bottom of the crock pot I put in a little bit of water (1/4 cup), red wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce (probably about 1 tbsp each), I added some salt, pepper, peppercorns, garlic and onion powder, fresh sliced onions and garlic. Then I put the meat on top. and sprinkled some more salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder.
I covered the meat with foil

Placed the veggie and potato packet on top with the seams up so they don't leak

Placed the lid on

And set to cook for 6-8hours on low (it was a little more than 8 hours for me)


I forgot to take a picture of the finished product but all in all it wasn't too bad. The meat was a little dry for my taste but the potatoes were cooked and so were the veggies. I suggest for best results cook this on high for 4 hours. It was nice being able to come home to dinner already cooked.

Yummy Food

I went to Panera Bread recently for lunch and decided to try the Mediterranean Veggie. It was so good! I'm in no way a vegetarian but I do like to eat fruits and veggies. Since I like to cook and don't like to spend oodles of money eating out I decided to try and make the sandwich myself. I went over to Panera Bread and bought a loaf of their bread (unfortunately they were out of the Tomato Basil bread that they use so I bought their three cheese which is also a sourdough). Sure it seems crazy to buy their bread but trust me I can't make this bread myself and their loaves are huge!





These are the ingredients I used to make the sandwich (Tomatoes, cucumber, lettuce, red onion, feta cheese, hummus, basil, sweet peppers in a jar)


Put 2 slice on a plate (like I said huge loaf!)

Then I placed some of the basil from the tube into a glass dish

I stirred the two together and placed it on the bread. Panera uses a cilantro humus but I'm not too fond of cilantro.

Then I placed the crumbled Feta Cheese on one slice

Washed and sliced a tomato and placed them on top of the feta

Washed and sliced a cucumber and placed those on bread

Sliced some red onion, placed on bread.

Took some of the sweet peppers from the jar and arranged on bread.

Washed and dried some lettuce and placed on bread

Place other slice on top and volia a beautiful, delicious sandwich!

It was really good!