Tag: Sleep

Sophomore Goals

Sophomore Goals


I have learned many things from Freshman year – the do’s and the do not’s. This year, I hope to improve academically and learn more about who I am as an individual.

1. Make Connections. I am at the point where connections (to medical school, hospitals, and clinics) are essential to have. I am halfway through college and I need to plan ahead so I have a secure pathway towards my aspiration to work in the medical field.

2. Get enough sleep. Sometimes I become so consumed in my school work that I forget that getting enough sleep is necessary to “recharge” myself for the next day. Especially when it is close to midnight or past midnight, I realize that the quality of work that I do is not that good. Instead of doing a bad job of studying, I should sleep instead. I need to effectively prioritize.

3. Use my time wisely. If I am in front of a laptop, the chances of me listening to music and on Facebook and other sites are highly likely to happen. This causes a major distraction and I get work done in longer periods of time. I need to use my time wisely. If I have any free time, I should get work done, especially on-campus when I have free time. The more work I get completed, the more leisure time I get to have when I commute home.


4. Eat. Just like sleeping, I always forget how necessary it is to eat. I might be busy with schoolwork or something and simply forget to eat. Consequently, sometimes my stomach will make noises in class. To keep myself healthy and nourished, I should eat snacks (at least) throughout the day.

5. Stop thinking negatively. Somehow, I will get through my classes and eventually graduate. I shouldn’t need to complain over the smallest things and make a fuss about it. It is a waste of time. Instead, I should focus on ways to work around the problem and/or resolve the issue.

The Three Parts

The Three Parts

When The Prestige first came out on DVD during my sophomore year in high school, I happened to be flying back from a trip to Israel. Because of this coincidence, it playing on its own channel during my 12 hour flight from Jerusalem to New York. The movie is just over two hours, and they played it about 5 times. I watched it every single time.

The reason for this high school throwback at the beginning of my annual “Look what an awesome time I had during my winter break this year!!!11!” post is that throughout my holiday break, I couldn’t stop thinking about the ending of the movie.

We hear Cutter (played by Michael Caine), explaining that, “every magic trick consists of three parts, or acts.” And, if I needed a quote to describe my winter break, that was it. It was grouped into three different segments of time and every one felt just like magic.

Part 1 (aka Livin’ the Dream)

Christmas at a children’s hospital!

During the first week and a half of winter vacation, all my dreams had come true. I was able to limit myself to four activities: 1. watching cheesy CW television shows; 2. sleeping; 3. working Christmas shifts at the hospital; and, 4. sleeping some more.

After my semester filled with at least 48 hours without sleep at least once a week and countless commitments to take care of, it was so nice to go to work in the afternoon, watch television all night, and sleep all day.

I know that it sounds like working over break wouldn’t be very fun, but surprisingly, it was a blast. Since I work at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, we constantly had Santa and his elves dropping off toys for our patients. And we got to wear awesome holiday themed headbands!

Part 2 (aka JewFest 2013)

Last year, I spent Easter Vacation in Miami, Florida with one of my best friends. Since she had visited me at Loyola our freshman year, we wanted to go somewhere different for what we have now decided is our now annual reunion.

Our destination for junior year: New York!

Reunited…and it feels so good!

We ate, saw, and did so much over the 10 days we were there.


…inadvertently ended up spending New Years Eve in the penthouse at the Waldorf Astoria


…went to the American Museum of Natural History

…continued to eat

…saw Peter and the Starcatcher


… and reunited with many of our old counselors from the camp where we first met each other about 10 years ago.

While New York and everything in it is pretty ballin’, seeing all of our old friends was definitely the best part of the trip. We saw staff (including my first counselor, who I hadn’t seen since I was 10!) and other campers who we used to be in awe of, whispering to each other, “OhmyG-dohmyG-dshe’sSOCOOL.” And the best part…they treated us like real grown ups now!


Part 3 (aka Cabin in the Woods)

Finally, with one weekend to spare and after only 2 days back in Chitown, I went up to my mom’s cabin in Minocqua, Wisconsin with my two friends, Maureen and Scott.

We had originally planned on going skiing, but that fell through when the snow did. However, we still had as much fun as three kids alone in a cabin in the middle of nowhere could have. Spoiler alert: it was a lot.

Wilderness Explorers!

We watched an obligatory we-are-three-kids-alone-in-a-cabin-in-the-middle-of-the-woods horror movie, in addition to cooking meals, convincing family friends to give us free meals, going hiking, and even playing some pretty intense Scrabble. It was the perfect.

Even though I’ve cut down on my commitments (maybe i’ll actually get sleep now!) this semester, I still have a long ways to go before summer vacation. I’m really grateful for the chance to rejuvenate before I dive back into school life, and I can’t wait to see what Spring 2013 brings me!

Photo 1 attributed to myself

Photo 2 attributed to myself; used with permission from the ballin’ Rachel Niederhoffer

Photo 3 attributed to, and used with permission from, the lovely Batyah Weiss

Photo 4 attributed to the grown up Koz; used with permission from Maureen “Cool Cat” Burns and Scott “I Haven’t Been Scared Since Alien” McCoy

Fall Break!

Fall Break!

Fall break has arrived and I am welcoming it with open arms and open books.

I kicked it off with a trip to the movies with a friend to see “The Perks of Being A Wallflower”. It was a truly wonderful movie with great acting. I read the book when I was in junior high, and as much as people have said that you should read the book before seeing it, I’m really glad that I didn’t remember a thing from the book. It was like a brand new experience, one that left me with a lot of food for thought.

Now that I have started fall break, the time has come to spend four straight days catching up on sleep and homework, and I’m actually fine with that. Tomorrow I will do neither, though, because I’m rising early to go to work. I’m excited for that  for several reasons.

First off, this is going to be the first Saturday that I work at my job ever, and I’ve been working there for over a year now, so I’m really happy about that. Second, it’ll be a fair, and I’ve never actually worked a fair before so it’ll be a little different from what I usually do at work.

Third and finally, which is kind of my favorite reason, I’ll be working downtown at the Water Tower Campus, as opposed to at Lake Shore Campus, so though I’ll be seeing my coworkers working, we’ll be in a different environment than I’ve ever seen them in. That may sound weird, but to me its really cool. Having this workday be different from my usual will be a nice change, and I know that it’ll make me appreciate my job even more because I’ll be seeing it from a new light.

Sunday will be the day when I finally get to catch up on my sleep. I plan on unplugging all phones and other electronics in the house, putting my sleep mask on, and knocking out for a good 12 hours. Yes, that does sound crazy, but so does going day after day to school on 5 hours of sleep. I want half a day of uninterrupted shut-eye so I can dream in peace.

Once I do wake up, it’s a complete homework day from there. There are several chapters and assignments that I need to catch up on, and I hope to get everything done by the time midnight rolls around. Time to break out my school rules and get crankin’!

Nursing: We Call the Shots

Nursing: We Call the Shots

Me dressed as Agnes (from Despicable Me) and my friend dressed as Desert Rose (from It's Always Sunny in Philedelphia)

I’m not too good at introductions. Even on Facebook, my “write something about yourself” section simply says “something about yourself. haha. i’m so witty.” (Get it?  It says, “write something about yourself,” so I wrote the phrase “something about yourself.”) I don’t think I can get away with that in this case, so I should probably just start with my name and some basic information.

My name is Ellen Gordon and I’m a sophomore BSN (nursing) major here at Loyola. I was one of those kids with a restless parent who moved them around a lot, but I consider Palatine, IL to be my hometown. I chose to come to Loyola University Chicago because it has an amazing nursing program and because I had an amazing overnight visit my senior year of high school; it was the first university I visited in which I felt like I truly belonged.

As a nursing major, almost every aspect of my life is consumed with labs, classes, planning for clinicals and studying. That’s how I came up with my blog name – you know that cliché of the girl walking around campus, looking like she’s running solely on magic and clutching a Monster in her hand like it’s the only thing keeping her upright because she’s been studying until 4:00 am? That’s me, along with the other few hundred or so nursing majors.

In fact, the picture of me (I’m the one dressed as Agnes) at the beginning of the post was taken with a fellow nursing student, Jackie, at her awesome Halloween themed lab practical study party birthday party.

When I do have the occasional second of free time, I watch Doctor Who, bombard people with facts and food from my Jewish culture, read anything that I can get my hands on and go on random adventures. My favorite part about Loyola is having the city as my backyard.

I can’t count the nights where I’ve been convinced that I’m going to spend the whole evening in my residence hall, yet somehow find myself ending the night at the other end of the Red Line, having gone on a journey to Chinatown or some other Chicago locale with my friends. And I look forward to telling you all about my adventures, nursing and otherwise. I hope you enjoy reading!