Category Archives: Speech / School

Volunteering Update: Services for Brain Injury in San Jose, CA

So a few months ago I began volunteering at an amazing organization in San Jose.  I feel like every new volunteer experience that I have in the field of Communication Disorders is such a wonderful opportunity for me to learn and is certainly no exception. Spending my time here once a week is very motivating to me as I begin preparing to apply to graduate programs.

Check out this video about Services for Brain Injury:


Hello World

I haven’t posted in a while so I wanted to give a little shout out.  Things have been great lately!  Life is basically centered around Aleksa and her whims these days but it’s all good.  People keep telling me this will be over before I know it and I sure believe them.  I can’t believe how fast she’s grown in just a few months.

I’m currently getting ready to start up school and work again next month, but I’ll be taking it slow, only a few days a week to start.  2 of my 3 classes will be online this semester too so I should be able to stay home with the little one and get my coursework done at the same time.

I’ve been working on lots of projects lately, and I’ve surprisingly gotten a lot done since little Aleksa arrived.  I’ll have to post pictures later, (I haven’t even updated these to my ravelry yet) but I’ve made a little sweater and a few other little things.  I’ve found that I can sew a lot of cool things for baby’s so I’ve been really into that lately.  I’ve also been sewing some bicycle basket liners for Cameron’s shop.

I can’t believe that I’m nearing the end of summer already.  This summer has DEFINITELY been a lot different than last summer.  I’m excited for what’s ahead!

Movie: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

I just finished watching this movie as a part of my attempt to stay involved in something Speech Therapy related this summer.  I’ve got a whole reading and movie list to go through so this is the first of many.

As a Communication Sciences and Disorders student, I’ve seen several people speak about their recovery from a CVA or TBI and there’s always this element of feeling “locked in.”  It is a common theme for people who develop communication disorders to feel frustrated and misunderstood due to their inability to communicate even their basic needs.  This film is about Elle Editor Jean-Dominique Bauby and his 1995 stroke that rendered him comatose for 20 days and eventually led to a “locked in” state.  His mind and imagination were fully functional, yet he could only physically control his left  eyelid and a few facial muscles.  Though he eventually died of pneumonia, he managed to write a book dictated entirely from blinking his left eye.  His original book (translated to English, of course) is definitely added to my summer reading list!

This movie really stresses the importance of communication and having patience with people who have communication disorders.  The film is beautifully directed by Julian Schnabel, who won several awards at Cannes as well as the Academy Awards in 2008.  Schnabel’s depiction of Bauby’s inability to communicate is eye opening.  Throughout the film, Bauby’s voice over is present and it expresses all of the things that he wants to say but can’t.  It really makes the viewer think about how much we take communication for granted.  Seeing the emotional bond between Jean-Dominique and the people that help him communicate is touching and makes me hopeful that I can one day help people in that way.  I’ve got a lot of studying ahead of me but I’m definitely up for it.

Studying Away

It’s been a while since I’ve posted because school has been  intense so far.  I’ve been spending my Mondays and Tuesdays at Viento y Agua on 4th Street studying and it has turned out to be a pretty effective studying method, but I suppose I’ll see exactly how effective after my first midterm next week.

So I’ve had a fantastic idea about some things that I can to to help study and remain creative at the same time.  I study very well by writing and re-writing things on flashcards or notebooks.  With this in mind, I’ve decided to try and make sense of some of the material that I’ve been learning this semester by making my own visual aids, basically posters.  I need to find some way to keep myself intrigued with this subject matter and I think that creative visual aids is the way to go for me (I am a VERY visual learner).  I had this idea today when I was studying in the library to make a giant timeline that I can hang on my wall. The timeline idea came into play because I’m having some trouble remembering the major stages of language development from infancy to adulthood.  I get the major things, but I need a constant reminder of the little things that I tend to look over when I’m studying the text.  I am thinking of making this timeline with acrylics and scraps of whatever else come into mind.  This is just an idea for now so I’ll post some pictures of how it comes out tomorrow when I get started on it before work.  I’m going to start sketching out what goes where, but for now I’m thinking it will be broken into thirds starting with infancy, then toddlerhood, then school age and adolescence sharing a third.  I think that each age will cover form, content an use.  I’m excited to get started!  I’ll be sure to post my progress tomorrow!!

Also, tomorrow morning I’m stoked to go try out a yoga class with my friend from school.  We’re going to a class at Yogaworks in Costa Mesa.  I’m ashamed to say that it’s going to be my first time going to a yoga class for about a month and a half (although I have been doing some stuff on my own).  Still, nothing compares to the community of being in a class.  I’m so excited!!

New Years Resolutions

This year is going to be a big one for me so I’m going to make a list of my resolutions.  I did pretty good in 2010 but I think 2011 is going to be my year.  Here’s my resolutions:

1. Go on more hikes. (hikes make me happy and I need to be outside more)

2. Knit myself a sweater or cardigan. (I’m afraid of big projects and I need to conquer my fear!  I’m thinking of making this one: Kimono Wrap.)

3. Prioritize my future and work hard this year so that I have options with graduate school. (this really doesn’t need any explanation.  This year’s classes will determine where I get into grad school so I need to work hard to open up some doors)

4.  Go to more yoga classes and work on my self-awareness. (always a necessity)

5. Make more time to volunteer at organizations like Free Arts. (I’m a registered volunteer but I don’t get the chance to go very often because of my work schedule.  I need to prioritize this more because this is such an awesome organization)

This is going to be a great year!

Finals and Last Minute Christmas Knitting


I just went to my last NSSLHA meeting of the semester last night and I saw an awesome guest speaker from Casa Colina Rehabilitation center in Pomona.  She talked about working with people who have traumatic brain injuries and that population is definitely of interest to me to I naturally soaked up everything she said.  Currently, I haven’t volunteered in a hospital or rehab setting but I intend to start in January at Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach so I should gain some experience there.  As of right now, I really just need to get ready for finals.  Stats should certainly be a difficult one but otherwise I think this is going to be a fairly stress free finals week.

In between studying, I’m working on making some snowmen and a few more stockings to give as Christmas gifts.  Also, I need to remake my cousin’s hat because it came out way too big!

End of the Semester

I’m getting towards the end of my semester here and it has gone by really fast! I only have one week left and a HUGE paper that I’m procrastinating on right now and then I’m all set.  The only final I’m really worried about is Stats but I’m gearing up to study really hard.  I’m so excited for next semester because all I’m going to have left after this Fall are Comm Disorders classes.  It’s exciting because I’ll finally be doing exactly what I want to do.  I’m going to love it because I’ll finally feel like I’m getting somewhere in this program, as opposed to waiting for classes to open up.  My initial interest in Communicative Disorders was in March of 2009 and I slightly missed the deadline to apply for the CSUF program then, so taking these classes for me has been a long time coming.  I think it will be really positive for me to go into these difficult classes with this attitude of excitement.

On a side note, I’ve been knitting a TON!  I need to update my Flickr with all of the stuff I’ve finished.  Over Thanksgiving break I had some time so I made some Christmas gifts.  Also, I finished my brother’s Weasley sweater just in time to go see Harry Potter 7!  Here’s a link to my projects:

My favorite is the Raunchy Deer hat: