Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Selfish altruism.

Occasionally you get to do a little something for yourself while also benefiting something else in an awesome way. Today I got that chance. There was a table set up in the Student Union selling jewelry. Every semester this table gets mauled by students because not only is the jewelry beautiful and unique, all the proceeds go to a terrific cause.

Turtleshell jewelry is really pretty, I'm not gonna lie. But it also means that an endangered species is being knocked off so you can sport those lovely, multifaceted earrings. Unfortunately with the popularity of turtleshell and how inexpensive it is, it's difficult to get people to give it up. Especially tourists who want to take home something "Caribbean-y" when they hop off the cruise ship for a few hours to go trolling for souvenirs in Port. Not to mention how difficult it is to convince the locals to stop making turtleshell jewelry when: A.) It's a part of their culture. B.) It sells.

So what this project has done is given local artists a chance to make money selling jewelry that replaces turtleshell with sea glass, seashells and recycled bottle glass beads. The pieces are truly stunning, too. They've got everything from very simple glass beads on a leather thong to more ornate silver wrapped pieces of gorgeous sea glass. I bought an anklet today with a bead made of out a recycled Bombay Sapphire gin bottle. It's very simple, but for some reason I just love it. And I got to give money to a good cause, which makes it even better.

Please to excuse the lack of shaving in a few days.

If you're interested in learning more about the sea turtle project, go to:

Friday, June 24, 2011

New meanings.

Vet school makes you redefine some things you used to think you understood. For example...


A quiet night in with friends.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Just keep swimming...

Ever since getting down here, upper semesters have described second semester as the semester you "survive" or "just get through." It's basically back to back to back exams until finals week. The last four weeks have been a hellish rollercoaster ride and I only get two weeks in which to rest, recuperate and review everything I was just tested over in preparation for the next intense round of exams.

This semester has definitely been an eye-opener. My lowest exam score last semester was an 80%. This semester I have already failed two exams. Failed in the sense that at Ross anything below a 70% is failing. I haven't failed failed anything yet, but of course as far as my continued enrollment here is concerned, that doesn't matter. The good news is that one of the fails was in a class with a steep curve such that I am still passing the class with a high C. The other exam I failed was only by 4 points and so I feel confident that I can recuperate and pass that class as well. Still, these grades are a far cry from where I was at last semester and from what I am capable of. In all honesty I've had a pretty bad case of apathy this semester. It took me several weeks to get my head in the game and by then I was far behind. Talking to my friends in their second semester of vet school both at Ross and elsewhere in the U.S. this seems like a fairly common thing. Like "senioritis" you just hit a wall and can't bring yourself to put in the effort. Eventually you either pull yourself up by the short hairs or fail out.

I'm slowly coming out of my funk. I've forced myself to start reading ahead before anatomy lab and actually take an active role in going over structures with my group instead of sitting there staring at dead flesh like a zombie. I'm reading ahead before immunology lectures, because the lectures for that class are supremely boring and unhelpful but luckily the written notes are much more beneficial and easy to understand. Unfortunately with physiology, I don't know what I can do to bring my grade up. On top of useless lectures, the written notes are dense and narcolepsy-inducing and the professor tests in such a way that even if you know the material 100% in and out you can still fail the exam because the way he asks questions is completely counter intuitive to most students. We have a popular phrase for failing one of his exams here which I won't repeat because it contains his name. Luckily there is usually a huge curve for this class. Needless to say he's not one of my favorite professors and I'll be glad to see the tail end of him in 3rd semester.

In better news, I found an even better deal on an apartment and changed my plans to move into the original one I mentioned before. This place is $100/month cheaper, with more amenities included (free WiFi and premium cable) and includes a dishwasher, dryer (which the other didn't have - a lot of Kittians use a dry line) and a pool! Yes, a pool! I am so entirely psyched about this place I can't even tell you. Pics posted below. I'll change things a bit when I move in, mostly in the bedroom with my sheets, rugs, yoga mat and knick knacks being bright orange, yellow and pink. But for the most part, this is what it's going to look like.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


I'm sorry! I know I haven't updated in awhile, but second semester is crazy-go-nuts. There's pretty much at least one exam every week. I had one last week, one this week, two next week and and then another the week after next. Then I get a two week break during which I need to study my open-water scuba certification material and schedule my first closed water dive. This is on top of trying to find a new apartment, which thankfully I've found. I was able to remain in the same area that I live in now, which I love because where I live right now is very quiet and residential compared to other student living areas. And I was also able to keep my current landlord, which I'm also very happy about because she's a great lady. I won't move until late August, but I promise pics of the new place when I've gotten settled in.

I've also been trying to find hotel information for my family when they come visit during the semester break, which actually turned out to be fairly easy. I called a few places and asked if they offered a Ross student discount and spoke to a few Ross students who've had family come down and they said that the Timothy Beach Resort was very nice, clean, the staff were friendly and they offered a great discount for Ross students. I stopped by and took a look, confirmed the discount, and sold! They're getting a full suite complete with separate kitchen, living room and bedroom as well as a deck with patio furniture for less than $100/night. Sweet!

In closing, Dolly is still adorable and still unhomed. She has something to say to those people who passed her over for her siblings...

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Two down.

Both Amelia and Roman have gone to their new homes. Dolly is the only one left to be adopted. Last Saturday at the adoption event everyone kept remarking on how soft Roman and Dolly's fur was. I guess I never thought that they were softer than average for kittens, but then realized that Mama's fur is incredibly soft as well. I guess they got her good genes!

It helps that I'm friends on Facebook with their new owners and get to see all of the pictures they're posting and how well they're doing.

Some of their best photos in a proper send off:



 And the last videos I have of all three of them together: