Packing light for your next adventure

Let me be completely transparent: I’m hardly a “light” packer by nature. The suitcase I took on a recent trip to Playa del Carmen, Mexico, weighed in at a hefty 64 pounds. Want to see me lose my cool? Ask me to magically find a home for 14 pounds of shoes at 4 a.m. in the airport.

When you spend six weeks traveling Europe with a standard 45-liter backpack, you have to get very creative with your limited space. So, over the years, I’ve adapted out of necessity.

Outdoor hobbies might just improve your dentistry

I love waking up to the smell of the crisp, mountain air. A gentle breeze rustles the trees. It’s a much-needed respite from the musty city air I’m used to. Most people can’t tell the difference until they have experienced it, but the contrast is unmistakable.

For me, backpacking is a great avenue to escape the stresses of dental school.

Try a new hobby: Home brewing advice from a novice

Lindert_3Kicking back with friends and a delicious microbrew is a great way to unwind. Even better than a well-advertised store-bought beer, however, is the satisfaction that comes from drinking your own concoction. With the rising popularity of small-batch, unique and unconventional beers, home brewing is a great hobby for rookies and connoisseurs alike.

Now I won’t exaggerate, I’ve only done one home brew. While it was a lot of fun, there is certainly some technique involved. My roommate and fellow UNE dental student Keris Flynn and I encountered some hurdles while making our flagship brew. Hopefully the knowledge I can pass on may be of some use in your home brewing endeavors to avoid making the same mistakes we did.

First comes love, then comes dental school: Planning a wedding on busy schedule

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After my fiancé got down on one knee and placed the ring on my finger, there was about a 24 hour time lapse before I felt the world closing in on me. I had already over-committed to extracurricular activities and I had both my NBDE and clinical entrance exams to prepare for this year. How was I going to manage planning my dream wedding on top of that?

Dental gifts that are better late than never

holiday giftsMerry Christmas! If you have a post-holiday gift exchange scheduled, it’s not too late to buy something for your friends in the dental field. Dental presents, like all good presents, come in a wide variety. Some presents make us think, some make us laugh and some make us cry tears of joy. We will keep this in mind as we search for the best, funniest and most interesting presents for our favorite dental students and dentists.

We must take into consideration many things when searching for the perfect present, be it a large box with a bow under the tree or a small stocking stuffer. Who are we buying this present for? Is it something they will use or is it something to make them laugh? What is our budget? The most important part of any good present is the thought behind it. The only criterion in our search for the perfect present is that it brings joy to a fellow dentistry enthusiast.

Here are some fun ideas for your very own gifts:

Fantasy football as a dental-school outlet

footballThe life of a dental student is definitely a challenging one to say the least. It is a juggling act that you perfect year-to-year as you encounter new challenges along the way. As a first year dental student, you are in a state of shock as you try to keep up with a new and demanding routine. As a second year dental student, you have new challenges as preclinical work gets heavier, you begin treating patients, and you prepare for part I of the National Board Exam. As a third year dental student, you still have difficulty but a completely new set of challenges as patient care becomes your primary focus. Then finally, as a fourth year dental student, it all comes to a close. You hope you have enough requirements to graduate on time and prepare to complete your final Board and licensing exams. Interestingly enough, I have learned that there is one thing that brings many dental students together regardless of year classification and that, of all things, is fantasy football.