Monday, November 24, 2008

Blackberry blues

I am getting the new blackberry storm. The key word here is "GETTING." I have been anticipating it since Sep when I was told it would be released the first week of October. Finally, it was released on Friday Nov 21. Abe went at 9am to purchase the phone for me, an hour after they opened. Unfortunately, they were sold out at 8:45 (so close). The manager promised he would overnight ship it and it would be here by Monday.

I was pretty disappointed on Friday when I came home and heard it was sold out (the store was only given 10 phones). This afternoon I discovered that yet again it would not arrive today. Bummer. I don't normally have a problem waiting but when you've had a bit of a rough day and have something exciting to look forward to it, it can be very disappointing to find out it didn't work out. *Sigh* At least we ordered it right away, I guess most people who ordered it even within a few hours after us wont get it until Dec 15. At least mine is on its way from Memphis.

I'll let you know how I like it when it finally arrives (hopefully tomorrow). I'm not going to count on it again.

PS thanks for the check, Mom! It was sent the same day as my phone was by standard shipping and arrived today. So much for overnight shipping.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


As some of you may know, I have already vented about frustrating gift cards. However, months later I have still encounted numerous frustrations that I feel I should warn you about.

In July 2007, we were given a very generous gift from some friends, a $50 Vanilla Visa gift card that could be used anywhere. Wow, right? Unfortunately, with all of our other gift cards, we let it go months without use. After the first 6 or 7 months, the $50 started deducting monthly fees. By the time we went to use the card, it had been inactivated and was losing money each month. I went through the trouble of having a new, active card sent to us (for a fee) so we could use the card before it depleted to zero.

We received the new card right before my birthday. On June 30, 2008 I activated the card by calling the phone number on the card. When we tried to pay for my birthday dinner, the card was declined. I figured it needed some extra time to go through their system so shrugged it off. I tried again to use the card months later after activating the card, and still, no use.

Last week, I called the customer service to re-activate the card and inquire about what was going on. I was notified that the remaining balance was $30! After a huge phone tree run-around I was able to talk to a representative who I informed of my difficulties in using the card and my frustration in losing $20 when the card was unable to be used. Finally, she gave us the full $50 on the card and said it could now be used and would accumulate a fee again in December.

This week Abe tried to use the card two times and was again declined! Finally, he called again and was told we had a $30 balance. Abe told how we had just been given the $20 back last week. The rep told him that he saw that but that could only be done once, he could give us $10 was all. After some more talking with the supervisor, we were finally able to get the $50 we had arranged only a week previously and somehow spent the money. We were so glad to be rid of that headache.

Sorry this is such a long story, but it really was. I don't know why the card never worked or why after only a week they decided they wouldn't honor the agreement they had given us. Obviously, they don't have the customer at heart when the customer probably rarely hears back about the problems with this card. My recommendation:

Stay away from Vanilla Visa. They will definately be on our blacklist.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

LIfe keeps rolling along...

I had no patients today which made me very frustrated. For some reason I feel picked on and upset when I have nothing to do--if a patient cancels or fails their appointment--and I feel desperate to find something to do. This afternoon I finally got called to OS for a screening (a 20 minute appt). Then, I had to do a screening in another department just as the OS emergencies poured in. So, instead of getting to extract teeth and get some points, I reviewed a medical history and made an x-ray for a grand total of 8 points, 14 for the day. If I get less than 30 points per day I feel pretty annoyed. I have been trying so hard to work hard, be efficient, and finish my major cases before I leave for my rotations in one month! but it is hard when you have to rely on patients to make it in. I need to get used to it for private practice when it is more than graduation credits, but being able to pay the light bill and the staff.

On a good note, I am really excited for the blackberry storm that comes out on Friday. I may have to ride the wave of trendy-ness and go for it the day it is released. My phone is ready to retire.

And, a shirt I have wanted for over a month ago at Banana Republic was on sale for just $9.99 today. I am glad I waited. I have a BR credit card that sends me gift cards for BR. I wanted to use the $10 card but I guess I am required to spend at least the amount the card is worth before tax. Bummer, the shirts was one penny too cheap. Haha.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Preacher Plug

While in high school my brother formed a band called Concubine. Now that he is away at college he is working on a solo project he calls Preacher. I am really impressed with his musical talent. He knows so much about musical theory, different bands and songs, and of course, is a talented musician on both the guitar and the bass as well as playing the piano and writing his own songs.

So, I have featured some of his songs here on my blog. If you feel like some of the songs may be a little "hard" for your liking, I would recommend my favorite, Grace for Kelli. Hope you enjoy. He has a cd if you are interested!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Soup Savvy?

I think it is winter...but I have been in a huge soup mood lately. I have made so far a very healthy garden veggie, cheeseburger, and am anxiously awaiting my chance to make my mom's zucchini soup recipe. Somehow, I am still wanting more. Anyone have any good ones they would recommend?

Also, for those of you unaware, my husband is an excellent cook, especially baker. He has some great (and mostly fattening) recipes (with pics) to share on his blog.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Last interview

My back-up plan for next year if I don't get into OS is looking more and more like it will be the general practice residency at the hospital (GPR). Today was my interview. I was surprised to see so many people from all over. I kind of suspected to see mostly Iowa students there, of which I was the only one. I was also surprised to see I was yet again the only woman. 

The interview itself was very casual. The interviewers assured me I was a very competitive applicant and they had already heard a lot about me both in person and by letter from some of my instructors. That was nice to hear. My second interviewer had to leave and I was assigned to interview with one of the oral surgeons. Since he had just interviewed me a few weeks ago, they skipped that. So, the interviewing itself was very short (less than 10 minutes) and low stress. They were positive and very supportive of my interest in specialty training.

So this is what will happen:

In December the GPR program will let me know if they want me. They are willing to wait for me to make my decision in late January after I hear back from the OS match. However, this does not mean they will hold a spot for me. So, my back-up plan does pose a risk as it is not a sure deal, even if accepted. More waiting game...

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Crazy 8

In a bit of a blog lag...

8 shows I watch:
1. Prison Break
2. The Office
3. Lost
4. Reruns of the West Wing
5. CNN political coverage
6. …we don’t have cable, I watch everything online or DVD…

8 Things I did yesterday:
1. Cleaned teeth on two patients
2. Made radiographs (x rays)
3. Removed sutures
4. Did a post-operative exam and surgery screening
5. Removed a second molar
6. Assisted in the extraction of two teeth
7. Ate dinner that Abe made me
8. Went to Cedar Rapids to Sam’s Club to check prices for our Ward Christmas Party menu

8 Places I love to eat:
1. Texas Roadhouse
2. Three Samurai
3. Cheesecake Factory
4. Which which sandwiches
5. Wig and Pen
6. Giordanno’s Pizza
7. Greek Islands
8. Red Lobster

8 Things I look forward to:
1. Finishing my denture patients before Christmas (I hope!)
2. The release of the new Blackberry Storm
3. Getting back in shape
4. Becoming good at basketball
5. Warm weather and biking again in shorts
6. Going home for Christmas
7. OS Match Day January 26, 2009!
8. Summer 2009 knowing I am now a dentist--passing clinical boards, licensure, and knowing my plans for the future

8 Things on my wish list:
1. Blackberry Storm
2. Home for Thanksgiving
3. Tropical vacation with SCUBA diving
4. OS residency at U. of Iowa
5. An “A” in my last class, Family Dentistry
6. More storage space at my apartment
7. Manageable winter
8. Time to backpack across the world

8 people I tag:
1. Diana
2. Brenna
3. Colton
4. Caitlyn
5. Abby
6. Nicole
7. Heidi
8. Shawn

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Sad Politics

Tuesday I found myself very grateful walking from the ballot box. Not only are we as citizens allowed to vote, but I, as a woman, am allowed to vote and do not have to rely on my husband to make those decisions for me (esp this time...). Anyway, although I may have been disappointed some of my candidates and issues were overruled, I am grateful we have a democracy where people get to decide.

That is why I am very sad about all of the hub-ub over Proposition 8 in California. Here is a blog that explains well why I am many others from our church supported its passing.


It makese me extremely sad to see how this use of democracy has been turned around to point the finger at others who chose differently. Actually, it makes me sick. We elected a black president but we have a long way to go in other ways...

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

My patient the flip-flopper

So I thought I was frustrated a few days ago when I posted my last post. Here is the update:

Thursday last week: Pt is in pain and decides to get a root canal to save the tooth
Monday: Pt calls to say she wants extraction
Tuesday AM: 30 min conversation with patient; patient decides to go ahead with root canal
Tuesday PM: Pt calls to clerks to say she does not want appt at all; I am supposed to call pt to verify
Tuesday PM: Pt will not answer phone and has no answering maching
Wednesday AM: I am wondering if she is coming in or if I wasted a whole afternoon appt on her, or if she is coming...does she want a root canal or an extraction? These require different clinics, hugely different procedures, faculty, instruments, appt starting times, and whether or not I need an assistant.

I guess we'll just have to see.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Tooth Pain

I think the economy has taken a bit of a toll on the dental school. It has been harder to get patients in (people are no longer willing to make a 2 or 3 hour drive for 1/2 price dental work) and many are choosing cheaper work over ideal care.

I am currently working in the admissions clinic which is the emergency filter clinic for the school. While I get no points for the time I am in there, I have learned a lot. For one, it is interesting to see what different people classify as an "emergency." Some people come to the EMERGENCY clinic to request a cleaning; others are clearly in so much pain they can hardly move, talk, eat, sleep, think, etc. I have learned a lot about diagnosing tooth pain and learning just how awful mouth pain can be.

One of the hardest requirements to fulfill this year is molar endo (a root canal on a molar). I found one such patient last week. She was young and after talking about options, she decided she would let me do the root canal instead of have the tooth taken out. I was so happy! Her appointment is this wednesday. Today I got a message from the clinic clerks saying she wants the tooth out. I am hoping it is the pain talking. ...I wasn't happy. And you can't just go from Family Dentistry to Surgery without notice.

Does anyone need a root canal? It is only $190 for a molar and you get my beautiful company.