Final night in Halls @ UEA!

Dear UEA, thanks for sheltering me for one academic year. It’s been a hell lot of fun so far. Living independently, I feel becoming more mature and ready for whatever life has to bring on in the future. To highlight, I loved the friendly atmosphere of UEA, my course and my placements. If you are coming to UEA make sure to spend time for friends. You will need their help when you feel overwhelmed. Big thanks to everyone who supported me: family, friends, lecturers, advisers, mentors, employers etc.

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For my final night in halls my Bulgarian friend and I decided to cook a Bulgarian cuisine! We made a three-course dinner.

1) Mussaka [мусака] 

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Ingredients – serves 4/5: 600g potatoes, 500g minced/ground pork or beef, 1 carrot, 1-2 onions, 2 tomatoes, 2 eggs, 250g yoghurt, pinch of baking soda, 1 tbsp flour, salt, red pepper, ground cumin

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How to make it: Season the ground meat with salt, pepper and ground cumin to taste. Mix it with the onion and fry it in a pan until it becomes in small pieces for approx. 5 – 10 min. Dice the potatoes, the carrot, the tomatoes and place them in a baking tray. Add the meat and mix everything well. Add water until it almost covers the ingredients and bake on 200 C for about 40 min. Stir dish if required after 20 min. Meanwhile make the topping by mixing the eggs, the yogurt, a pinch of baking soda, and 1 tbsp of flour. After the potatoes and meat are well cooked cover the dish with the topping and bake for further 10 min. Serve and enjoy.

2) Tarator [таратор]

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Ingredients – serves 4/5: 1 cucumber, 500g yogurt, 500 ml cold water, 3 cloves of garlic, 2 tbsp of olive oil, parsley, dill, salt to taste

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How to make it: dice the cucumber and place it in a big mixing bowl or a pot. Add the grinded garlic,add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Place in the fridge until chilled and serve chilled.

3) Rice pudding [мляко с ориз]

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Ingredients serves 4: 250g rice, 500ml milk, 8 tbsp of sugar, vanilla extract, ground cinnamon

How to make it: Pra-boil the rice. Add the milk until it starts boiling, add the sugar and continuously stir for 10-15 min. Add the the vanilla extract to taste and serve with cinnamon on top.

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It’s great to cook with a friend and enjoy food together! I’m looking forward to cooking together again!

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year one reflection

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After finishing year 1 of Nursing school I feel that I have grown up and learned so much. Working at a local hospital has been a truly great experience which helped me understand the role of nurses and other healthcare professionals much better. Working with others in a team helped me reflect on my own attitude and weaknesses. Asking for feedback and advice turned out well at the end because I was able to acknowledge my own flaws and work really hard on improving myself. As a result my performance improved significantly.

The academic aspect of nursing school has been helpful, however, I felt that as a student I was left to learn greatly on my own. There is though plenty of people to ask for advice and guidance,such as, personal advisers, lecturers, link lecturers, the LTS Hub, Dean of Student;s Office etc.

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In terms of social life, I have been lucky enough to make friends and enjoy social activities, such as, societies, parties and meetings. The diversity of people is amazing and the chance of coming across with someone who has similar interests to yours is quite high.

Overall, there have been challenges but the positives do outweigh the negatives, hence, studying for one year here has not been in vain. I am looking forward to the four weeks of summer break and then going back to university for my second year. I hope that the experience from year one will have adequately prepared me for year two and my future.

EXPLORING NATURE

When I get bored or feel overwhelmed with stress I just go for a walk or jogging. It’s amazing that UEA has such relaxing and beautifully green campus. It is so helpful to get rid of negative thoughts and re-charge yourself from the beauty of nature.

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UEA LAKE
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IVY
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SUNFLOWERS
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PATH
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ROCKS
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A HEART?
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LEAFS
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WATER LILIES
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TINY SPIDER
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MYSTERY PLANT
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THISTLE
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BRIDGE NEAR RIVER YARE
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DOG SWIMMING
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WILDLIFE LEAFLETS

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LOVELY PATH FOR A WALK OR JOGGING AROUND THE LAKE
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HIDDEN HORSES
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RIVER YARE
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DONKEY AND PONNY FARM
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CURIOUS

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FRIENDLY
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BEE
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QUICK LIFE UPDATE

To begin with, last week I had my OSCE and my SafeMedicate exams. All the preparation and reading I’d done showed great results! I’m pleased to say I passed all my 1st year exams. The only things left are my final 2 weeks of placements (6 shifts to go) and to hand in my portfolio. me

I always believe there is chance for improvement and even though my results are good, they can always be better next time! Regarding my placement, I’ve had challenges and weak areas to work on which I didn’t knew about before. However, it’s good to get an honest feedback because this will eventually make me a better team player and a better nurse. Currently, I’m working on some final bits and pieces of documents I need to hand in before I officially finish the academic year. WP_20150709_001

It’s been a pleasure UEA, to have studied so hard, however, I can’t wait for the summer vacation to come! 😛 My friend and I treated ourselves with cheap pizza, crisps and doughnuts because we passed our exams. And there goes my diet…:D 1500 calories in one go. Anyway, will avoid junk foods as usual.pizza

Share your stories below!

Last offices

If you’re not doing nursing or you’re not into healthcare then you’ve probably never heard of the phrase ‘last offices’. Well, with mixed feelings, I’d like to write about my first experience in doing last offices. To begin with, last offices means taking care of the body after a patient has passed away.

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Recently, one of the patients I was taking care of passed away from metastatic breast cancer at the age of 88. I shadowed the doctor who certified her death. Being in a dark room, just me, the doctor and a breathless body…made me feel so small and useless. The doctor examined the level of conciousness  (AVPU score), checked the pupils which were fixed and dilated, checked for pulse, checked for breath sounds  and heart sounds with a stethoscope, checked for any pacemaker and finally certified the patient’s death in the nursing documentation.

Soon after, two healthcare assistants and me washed the body, changed the linen, covered all wounds with a waterproof dressing, covered the patient’s wedding band with tape to secure it, combed and tidied the hair, placed identity bands on the wrist and the ankle, dressed the patient and then covered the body in a sheet ready to to be sent to the morgue. All personal belongings had to be packed and documented. Lastly, I had to sign in the nursing documentation for participating in the process.

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It is important for the body to be sent to the morgue and refrigerated within four hours of death in order to preserve it in the best condition possible. Another thing to keep in mind is that even though the person is no more, we should still protect their privacy and dignity, and respect their last wishes and religious beliefs (if any). Never forget  to inform family members when the death has occurred, which I believe is the most challenging and difficult task of all.