Friday, June 17, 2011


Well, here we are in Texas, and it shurr is a hot one.  Muy cal-i-en-tay.

Thankfully the flights were uneventful.  Whereas flying for me used to elicit panic attacks, I find myself having fewer and fewer white-knuckle moments the more I fly with Dr. D.  It's to the point now where I can just sit down, buckle up, link my fingers in his, and drift off to sleep.  And by the time I wake up, he's already ordered me a Diet Coke and peanuts.  Good man.

We're visiting my parents for the first time since they moved here to the Gulf of Mexico.  It's strange to see all the furniture I grew up with in a new setting, but somehow their new house still feels like home.  It might have something to do with the fact that there are pictures like this around:

{Our wedding day - Mom being thoroughly entertained by Dr. D}

Of course we started missing J-dog the minute we got in the car on the way to the airport, so it was great to get the customary grunt-filled, tail-chasing greeting from Old Man when we arrived at my parents' house.  It didn't take him long to get back to the sock-stealing hijinx for which he is infamous.  Luckily Dr. D's socks were a little too big for him to down whole---in high school, my footie socks were never as lucky.

{Old Man with Dr. D's socks}

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

M4: Annum Ultimum

As of today's pediatrics shelf exam, Dr. D is officially a fourth year medical student.

I remember standing in the muggy summer weather on Navy Pier three years ago, taking in Chicago and the prospect of life in the Midwest, and thinking that it felt like his MD was such a distant goal---a slip of paper so far in the future that it was nearly impossible to imagine what life would be like once he'd obtained it.

Today, I can't believe that it's less than a year away.

Third year was probably my favorite year of medical school yet, and I'm sure it was Dr. D's also.  I liked it because it never felt stagnant.  There always seemed to be something for Dr. D to be excited about, and while there was a significant amount of studying that went on, it was nothing like the cramming that devoured our social life during 2nd year.  And for someone who didn't come into medical school with any true expectation of what his specialty would be, Dr. D relished in the opportunity to sample the wide range of medicine throughout his core rotations.

Personally, I just loved seeing how jazzed he was to have true, constructive contact with real patients.  This was the year when I really got to see it: my husband treating people.  My husband, as a doctor.

Gosh, he's gonna be good at this.

I anticipate that the biorhythm of fourth year will go something like this:
  1. Total relaxation (we leave tomorrow on a vacation to visit my parents in Texas)
  2. Emotional angst (once we get back from vacation, Dr. D will be gone on away rotations for three months solid)
  3. Jubilation (Dr. D's return in mid-September coupled with a low-key 4th year school schedule)
  4. Extreme stress (residency interviews)
  5. Carefree, hedonistic abandon (attempting to complete our bucket-list after realizing we don't have much more time left here)
  6. Nail-biting anxiety (leading up to Match Day)
  7. Cathartic release (Match Day)
  8. Excitement with a twinge of sadness (finding a new place to live, a new job for me, and preparing to leave behind our first home and friends we've made as a married couple)
  9. Sweat (moving)
  10. Peace (new beginnings)
Ready or not...

Monday, June 13, 2011

Guest Blogging & Random Trivia

Howdy y'all! (I'm practicing for our upcoming trip to Texas later this week... how did I do?)

I'm over here today, guest blogging and doing crazy stuff like revealing my real first name and talking briefly about something that I haven't devoted a whole lot of time to here: my job. I'd just like to give a quick shout-out to Daci, who I was lucky enough to connect with thanks to some key commonalities---namely our love of med school husbands and precocious canine companions. Her blog is a daily visit of mine, and probably should be for you as well.  Go check it out!
Dr. D and I had another lovely weekend filled with good eats, good friends, and really horrible trivia scores.

Did you know that terminal velocity when skydiving is 122 mph?  Yeah, us neither.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Bye-bye Bananas, Hello Muffins.

As a teen, my Dad insisted that I eat a banana every morning with my breakfast.  I completely resented it at the time, although I'm sure the potassium kept me from being a walking bruise during my rigorous year-round basketball playing days.

Needless to say, once I was in charge of my own breakfast planning, I avoided bananas completely.

It took me a long time to be able to eat anything banana-related after that, but I've finally come around and have discovered that in moderation, they're actually pretty great.  By far the best part about them is when they get too ripe, and I'm absolutely forced to turn them into something sweet and delicious.

Have a recipe!

Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white -or- brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 egg -or- 1/3 cup unsweetened apple sauce
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup plain yogurt -or- milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (approx. 2 bananas)
3/4 cup chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  In another bowl, combine the egg/applesauce, oil, yogurt/milk, and vanilla.  Stir into the dry ingredients just until moistened.  Fold in bananas and chocolate chips.  Fill greased or paper-lined cups two-thirds full.  Bake for 22 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.  Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.  Serves approximately 18 muffins.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Weekend Wanderings

Here's a little glimpse at our weekend according to (you guessed it!) instagram.  Hope your weekend was equally tasty & lazy!

We took trips to our favorite French pastry shop to play with our food (specifically a brioche monster)
and chillax with our buddy Monsieur Baguette.

Had some poodle cuddle time on the couch and didn't have to wait long for J-dog to fall asleep in one of his signature awkward positions.

As native Californians we have been on a constant quest in the Midwest for some authentic, cheap, greasy Mexican food.  After three years of "close, but not quite," we may have finally found it in a little taco truck on a random corner.  The mural of a burrito fighting a torta painted on the side of the truck was far too intriguing to pass up, and I'm glad we gave it a go because my chicken torta was muy bueno.

Went out with some friends for Sunday night trivia and got our butts handed to us (an entire round on Civil War historical trivia?! Come on!), but the black bean dip, bottomless chips, and fantastic company made it all worth while.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Mason Jar Munchies

There are two things you should know about me before we dive in to this post:
  1. I am becoming increasingly addicted to Pinterest.
  2. Growing up in my mother's household, I've developed a lifelong affinity for mason jars.  They were a constant presence around the house, often filled to their frosty brims with ice water.  Nothing can make hydrating more appealing, in my opinion.
Needless to say, when I found this recipe while investing (not wasting!) my time perusing Pinterest boards, I knew I had to give it a try.  Monkey bread is one of Dr. D's favorite childhood sweets and I was pleasantly surprised to discover that these adorable single-serve desserts are sinfully simple to make.

Here's the recipe and some pictures, if you'd like to give it a try---and believe me, you should.

You'll need:
  • four 8-oz. mason jars
  • 10 refrigerated biscuts {typically one package}
  • 1/2 cup of white sugar
  • 1/2 cup of brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. of ground cinnamon
  • a quarter stick of butter, melted {optional}

First, separate the biscuits and cut each one into fourths.  Mix the white sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon together in a bowl.  {Side note: While buzzing about the kitchen in giddy anticipation, Dr. D discovered that scooping a bit of this sugary mix with a tortilla chip resulted in a tasty snack akin to Taco Bell cinnamon twists.  Go figure.}

Each piece of biscuit will then be tossed into the sugary mix for coating.  I decided to melt a little bit of butter, dip my fingers in, and lightly coat each piece before putting them into the bowl.  The original recipe doesn't call for this, but Dr. D recounted to me the awesome butteryness of the monkey bread he used to eat as a kid, so I decided to go for broke.

Once all pieces are in the bowl, toss to your heart's content!  After the pieces are sufficiently coated, prep the four mason jars with cooking spray and place ten of the biscuit pieces in each, periodically sprinkling some of the extra sugary mixture between layers.

Place the mason jars in a high-edged pan and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 15 minutes, until the dough has risen and you can see the sugar bubbling.  {I let mine cook for 17 minutes, because the dough hadn't risen as much as I wanted---I imagine the timing changes based on the brand and type of biscuits you're using.}

Remove from the oven and let the jars cool for about 5 minutes before serving.  Dr. D and I each had one fresh out of the oven---highly recommended!---and I've lidded the other two and am refrigerating them for later.  We also discovered that chopsticks proved to be a fantastic implement for fishing the delicious bread bites out of the jar.