Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Hidden Gem

Ok West Des Moiners, I have a treat for you! Monterrey Mexican Restaurant is a delicious, inexpensive Mexican restaurant across Mills Civic Pkwy from Jordan Creek Mall. It’s slight off the beaten path, nestled in a strip mall, which is usually a winning recipe, and this place doesn’t disappoint. Fast service, hot (temperature) food served at low prices – there’s honestly nothing to dislike here.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Next 4 Years

Our activity of the month was plain and simple: our All SOS Meeting! We enjoyed an excellent turnout, a killer panel, and a frenzy of questions by our eager SOs. This meeting topic has been a tradition over the past several years, and has taken many forms – from more formal presentation, to town hall like this one. We found last year that there were so many differences between the DO and DPM programs, that we should split these panels into 2 separate groups. So after a few short announcements, that’s exactly what we did.

I heard the DPM meeting went well, but I didn’t get the details. I just know that Dr. Smith is an excellent, knowledgeable presenter. The DO meeting had a swarm of questions about boards, the lottery for rotations, what rotations sites are available., how to find good spots, what are good strategies for getting the rotation you want, etc. We talked a little about student loans and making sure you have enough money budgeted for the 4 years, especially 3rd to 4th year.

The discussion turned to finishing med school and interviewing for residency, should the student pursue only osteopathic opportunities, or allopathic ones as well. How does the match work? What are the dates for the match? What happens if you don’t match? What if you apply for a competitive residency?

You can find answers to many of these questions on our website, in the News and Info section. Of course don’t hesitate to email us, or stop one of us in the hall to find out more about what was said, or just for any general question that might come up.

We did mention that DMU will definitely send info about all these topics to your student, so don’t worry if you can’t remember what was said. We provide this meeting in case your student forgets to tell you. But please keep asking them, because they will probably know! Also, the Clinical Affairs department will become your student’s best friend during end of 2nd year to help plan those rotations, especially if you will be based out of Des Moines.

Good luck everyone! Just remember, don’t freak out. Stay calm! We’ll all make it through this together! Take it from a 4th year spouse, the end comes quickly, and things just get better year after year! When the boards are done, the interviews are complete, and rank list submitted, and you start thinking about that first residency paycheck and the end of med school, think of this discussion and I guarantee you’ll get a smile on your face!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

What's the Story

One of our own has become a published author! We are so proud of Natalie for this great achievement that we asked her to tell us what the book is about and where we could find it?
It’s a young adult’s novel, but adults like it too. The synopsis of the book is this: 'Even my most humiliating moments seemed funny somehow when I told them to Jess.' Gemma Mitchell is a normal girl who somehow gets herself into abnormally embarrassing circumstances. And while she thinks she's the biggest loser in school because of them, there are a few people in her life who would disagree.

One of those people is her best friend, Jess Tyler, who is opposite to her in every way. He's popular, good looking, athletic, and intelligent, and he can't get enough of Gemma. But while Gemma is dealing with problems like wrong locker combinations and Valentine's Day dances, Jess is living in a world of serious issues that are foreign to Gemma, until she realizes that he's holding on to her for dear life.

Humorous and true to life, Second Kiss is an entertaining saga about a boy and girl who find that their lives have a lot more meaning once they have shared them with each other.
The book, Second Kiss, is a teen fiction novel and can be ordered online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders etc.

Amazon has a kindle edition available.

They can order a signed copy from me on my blog at http://www.nataliepalmerbooks.blogspot.com, or they can order the signed book and bracelet gift package (the bracelet is the same one that is in the book) which is also on my blog. If you want to put prices on the newsletter (its up to you) the book is $18.99 and the gift package is $23.99.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

For the love of food

Darcie is our expert on food. Yes, she loves to cook – she runs our cooking club. She loves to eat – she also heads Taste of Des Moines. And she has been with us for almost 4 years now, so she has a plethora of restaurant dining experience. So as you plan your Valentine’s Day dinners, remember to subscribe to Groupon or LivingSocial, scrape the papers for those discounts, and make a reservation at one of these restaurants! Des Moines has a lot to offer the palate, so don’t wait!

$ - Cheap
$$ - Middle
$$$ - Expensive

  • Latin King – Italian, East side $$/$$$
  • Appare – Asian (great sushi and other Asian dishes, love the spice tuna roll and the California roll), Urbandale $$
  • Famous Dave’s $$
  • Tasty Taco (If I could, I would eat here at least once a week) $
  • Legends – American $/$$
  • Hessen Haus – German $$
  • Court Avenue Restaurant & Brewing Co – American $$
  • Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery – American $$
  • Palmer’s Deli – sandwiches $/$$
  • Manhattan Deli – sandwiches (not open at night, ask for Saturday’s special), $
  • Chips, Ankeny (like Applebee’s) American $/$$
  • Granite City Food & Brewery – American $$
  • Buffalo Wild Wings $$
  • P.F. Chang’s – Asian $$
  • Joe’s Crab Shack – Seafood $$
  • Olive Garden – pasta $$
  • Red Lobster – seafood $$
  • The Machine Shed – American $/$$
  • Cheesecake Factory – American $$
  • Champs – American $/$$
  • B-Bop’s (fast food) $
  • Maid Rite (fast food) $
  • Bakers Square – American $/$$
  • China One International Buffet – Asian $
  • Riccelli’s (hole in the wall, but fantastic food) $$/$$$
  • Waterfront Seafood Market $$/$$$
  • Cracker Barrel $ (one $ sign because of the amount of food you receive)
  • Red Robbin (love the turkey burger) $/$$
  • Breadeaux Pizza (great pizza and cheap) $
  • Mi Mexico Restaurant (Dr. Mortensen suggested this place and it was fantastic) $ (a ton of food)
  • A Dong – Asian $
  • All Play – American$/$$
  • Applebee’s $/$$
  • Baby Boomers – American $
  • Bennigan’s – American $/$$
  • Brickhouse American Grill – American $/$$
  • Fongs Pizza – Um Asian, Italian $
  • Centro – Italian $$
  • Dos Rios – Mexican $$
  • China Moon – Asian $/$$
  • Cool Basil – Asian $/$$
  • Drake Diner – American $/$$
  • 5 & Diner – American $
  • Fuddruckers – American $
  • Granite City – American $$
  • Big Steer – American $$/$$$
  • Jason’s Deli – sandwiches $/$$
  • Uncle Wendell’s BBQ $
  • Kin Folk Texas Style BBQ $$
  • Coney Island – fast-food $
  • Wellman’s Pub – American $$
  • Zimm’s Food & Spirits – American $$
  • Irina’s Restaurant & Bar – Russian $$/$$$
  • Okoboji Grill – American $/$$
  • Old Country Buffet $$
  • Panera Bread – sandwiches $/$$

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Cafe di Scala

Looking for the ultra romantic spot for an anniversary dinner or special date night? Cafe di Scala has the ambiance, the decor, the menu, and the wine list to meet your needs! Known as one of the most romantic restaurants in Des Moines, Scala is not really a cafe. Premiere Italian food from an ever evolving menu graces the tables of this century old Victorian mansion in the Hoyt-Sherman neighborhood. Though not inexpensive, the quality is worth the price. And the best thing, you are just a few blocks from Smokey Row for dessert!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Dubuque - Masterpiece on the Mississippi

This is a Mississippi river town with a long and rich history of trade and commerce from the early days of the country. Those of you from parts of the country with more interesting terrain would happily note that Dubuque is much hillier than Des Moines, due to the fact that it was mostly untouched by glaciers like the Great Plains, and because of the might Mississippi’s carving effect. It’s a small city of 50k people with a lot of charm. If you are looking for a long day trip or short overnighter, this might be a good destination.

This town has the typical things to do in cities this size, with a good mix of restaurants, shops, etc. There’s the river where you can catch an old fashioned riverboat, or visit one of the scenic overlooks, or the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium. There’s an opera house and theater if you’d like to catch a show. For those who like gambling and that sort of thing, there’s a fairly good casino with all the typical games and amenities (including a huge bowling alley).

If you decide to stay a few days, then you might want to venture out from Dubuque and checkout the sites nearby. Across the river on the Illinois side is the town of Galena, a famous Illinois resort area, complete with the best ski slopes you can find in an area without real mountains. In Wisconsin, you could go to House On the Rock, a famous, beautiful house built on a column of rock in the middle of Iowa County (coincidentally). On the Iowa side of the border, Dyersville, IA is home to Field of Dreams, the actual location of the filming of that famous movie, and a mecca for baseball lovers.