Friday, December 26, 2008

I want to be the one to walk in the sun

There's a blogger on another site who writes a 'thankful friday' post just about every week (yes, I'm talking about you, kat, just in case you should happen to drop in). In the post, she tries to find something to be thankful for about the preceding week. I've had a fairly rough week, but I thought perhaps if I get the not so cool things off my chest, then I could end with what was good about the week.

So, here goes:

I finished the semester last friday, leaving home at 8 am and arriving back home at 1 am. I went to bed for about 12 hours, then woke up with a cold/flu virus and spent christmas on major otc meds to fight sinuses so clogged my teeth ached, eyes matted shut, a cough that made my chest ache, and those muscle aches one gets in the back with those kinds of viruses. I'm only now feeling human, and now rugrat and her bf are catching it.

Rugrat was in a fender-bender on christmas eve at a local mall (a tiny woman in a big jeep backed her car up right on top of the front of our car; with a car behind her too, the rugrat couldn't move). And of course, the driver has high risk insurance, which is notoriously slow at paying out claims (hence our six weeks without the car a couple of months ago). And since it was 6 PM christmas eve, the insurance office is closed, and I can't even file a claim until monday morning. Not much visible damage, but there is a problem that makes it undriveable. So I'm without a car. Again.

Also on christmas eve (day), the washer broke. So we wound up dragging everything to the laundromat. Just before rugrat left for the mall. So, now we have to use the laundromat, but don't have a car to get there. Or, I can fight with the other nine families in our complex for the one washer in the basement. Lovely.

Two of my credit cards sent notices that they will be raising the APR. I can go with the flow and continue to use the cards at the new rate, or refuse the rate and my accounts will be closed, and I'll continue to pay them off at the old rate. Which means I'll now have four credit cards that are closed to prevent higher APRs, that I'm still trying to pay off, but that I can't use in emergency situations.

So, what am I thankful for?

The semester is over!!!! Ok fine, I still have prep for next semester, but still. It's over!!!

I finally met with my MFD committee earlier this month, and they didn't disown me like I thought they would. In fact, they are very supportive, since they know full well I'm teaching double the course load they are teaching.

I actually got rugrat number 1's presents in the mail before christmas. And the egg donor's too. And I survived another long phone call from the egg donor without exploding or imploding.

Despite being sick, the three of us got up and all did our part on making those homemade enchiladas and pico de gallo that we do for christmas dinner. And it was great, despite feeling crappy. Over dinner, we watched a movie that the bf had given rugrat as a gift (Crash).

I talked to rugrat 1 for a whole hour and a half this evening!!! He's such an incredible kid man, and I am so proud of him.

I'm sleeping in every day and slowly getting caught up on sleep.

I plan on finally doing two more installments in the runaway series (soundtrack of my life) over the next few days (just for you, my anonymous reader!). And hopefully, a few more posts that aren't a litany of complaints or updates, but that actually allow me to be creative.

Cyndi Lauper, Hey Now (Girls Just Wanna Have Fun):

Saturday, December 06, 2008

you get up every morning from your alarm clock's warning

A typical week in the life...

Monday:

7:00 AM, alarm goes off.

7:00-8:00, shower, hair makeup, make bed, and give myself a good five minutes to take my synthroid and prilosec (because all pills gag me) with an ounce of juice (because anything more on my tummy that early will make me queasy all day.

8:00-9:45, commute. Walk to the train station, catch the 8:20, get to marble hill and hop the 1 at roughly 8:45, get to campus at 9:45 if there are no problems.

9:45-10:00, have a small bowl of cereal at the office because now I've been up long enough for food.

10:00-2:00, answer emails, read papers/assignments X 2 classes, record grades, prep for classes, search internet for examples/articles for a class discussion, make copies for classes.

2:00-4:00, office hours. See students as drop-ins, mainly at this point in the semester for registration advising, but also those with field placements and other issues.

4:00-5:30, grab dinner and eat at desk, final prep for class and run down to pick up lcd projector/computer for class.

5:30-6:45, class

6:45-7:00, field student questions and concerns after class.

7:00-9:45, catch subway and hope for connection with 8:20 pm train back home and make it, walk home.

9:45 on, veg for a bit in front of telly, make a bite to eat, do some dishes.

1:00, to bed, up several times with sleep disruptions.

Tuesday:

7:00 AM, alarm goes off.

7:00-8:00, shower, hair makeup, make bed, and give myself a good five minutes to take my synthroid and prilosec (because all pills gag me) with an ounce of juice (because anything more on my tummy that early will make me queasy all day.

8:00-9:45, commute. Walk to the train station, catch the 8:20, get to marble hill and hop the 1 at roughly 8:45, get to campus at 9:45 if there are no problems.

9:45-10:00, have a small bowl of cereal at the office because now I've been up long enough for food.

10:00-12:00, last minute grading and class prep, pick up lcd projector/pc for class.

12:00-1:40, class.

1:40-2:00, field student questions and concerns after class.

2:00-3:00, grab lunch, eat in office while reading and responding to emails.

3:00-5:00, office hours. See students as drop-ins, mainly at this point in the semester for registration advising, but also those with field placements and other issues. See one student in particular who spends 45 minutes fretting about class, his/her performance, extracurricular activities (leader of student club), all while displaying a negative attitude and somewhat paranoid tendencies. Last student of the day doesn't leave until 5:30.

5:30-7:00, paperwork related to committee meetings.

7:00-9:45, catch subway and hope for connection with 8:20 pm train back home and make it, walk home.

9:45 on, veg for a bit in front of telly, make a bite to eat, do some dishes.

1:00, to bed, up several times with sleep disruptions.

Wednesday:

7:00 AM, alarm goes off.

7:00-8:00, shower, hair makeup, make bed, and give myself a good five minutes to take my synthroid and prilosec (because all pills gag me) with an ounce of juice (because anything more on my tummy that early will make me queasy all day.

8:00-9:45, commute. Walk to the train station, catch the 8:20, get to marble hill and hop the 1 at roughly 8:45, get to campus at 9:45 if there are no problems.

9:45-10:00, have a small bowl of cereal at the office because now I've been up long enough for food.

10:00-11:00, prep for class.

11:00-11:50, class.

11:50-12:15, field questions/concerns from students.

12:15-12:45, meet with student about field placement.

12:45-2:00, grab lunch and eat at desk, grade student presentations from class last week to hand back today.

2:00-4:00, attend meeting of student club for which I am faculty advisor. Try to encourage students to make decisions about future of club while not stepping on the toes of the previously mentioned student with the paranoid tendencies who is not providing group leadership, and who I see in the department's office later that day filling out a form, which makes me wonder if she's lodging a complaint with the department chair (now who's paranoid?).

4:00-5:30, finish prep for class.

5:30-6:45, class.

6:45-7:10, field questions/concerns from students.

7:00-9:45, catch subway and hope for connection with 8:20 pm train back home and make it, walk home.

9:45 on, veg for a bit in front of telly, make a bite to eat, do some dishes.

1:00, to bed, up several times with sleep disruptions.

Thursday:

7:00 AM, alarm goes off.

7:00-8:00, shower, hair makeup, make bed, and give myself a good five minutes to take my synthroid and prilosec (because all pills gag me) with an ounce of juice (because anything more on my tummy that early will make me queasy all day.

8:00-9:45, commute. Walk to the train station, catch the 8:20, get to marble hill and hop the 1 at roughly 8:45, get to campus at 9:45 if there are no problems.

9:45-10:00, have a small bowl of cereal at the office because now I've been up long enough for food.

10:00-12:00, prep for class and write two letters of reference for a student (one scholarship, one for admission to ivy league school), emails including communications with two MFD committee people that I'll be meeting with next week, internet research, etc.

12:00-1:40, class.

1:40-2:00, field questions/concerns from students, including a student with a disability about whose attendance I had previously been concerned, and yet another students with some serious paranoid tendencies that may affect her next written assignment.

2:00-6:00, grab lunch and eat at desk, type up notes of teaching observation of adjunct teacher as I will meet with him later that afternoon, research articles online for future class use, begin work on a sample writing intensive assignment for critique at faculty development workshop the next day.

6:00, computer crashes and is useless.

6:45-7:15, meet with adjunct teacher.

7:15-9:45, catch subway and hope for connection with 8:20 pm train back home and actually make it despite leaving work at almost 7:30, walk home.

9:45 on, veg for a bit in front of telly, make a bite to eat, do some dishes.

1:00, to bed, up several times with sleep disruptions.

Friday:

7:00 AM, alarm goes off.

7:00-8:00, shower, hair makeup, make bed, and give myself a good five minutes to take my synthroid and prilosec (because all pills gag me) with an ounce of juice (because anything more on my tummy that early will make me queasy all day.

8:00-9:45, commute. Walk to the train station, catch the 8:20, get to marble hill and hop the 1 at roughly 8:45, get to campus at 9:45 if there are no problems.

9:45, call help desk to get assistance on computer, am given instructions which I follow and leave the computer to do its thing hoping the help actually worked.

10:00-12:00, last workshop session for the semester on developing writing intensive courses; I do not have my sample assignment because of computer crash.

noon, during lunch break I run to my office to check my computer, which is still not working, call the computer help desk again, they start a 'ticket' for work, I run back to workshop.

12:00-2:00, rest of workshop, over lunch there is a discussion about correct pronunciation of words, and I have a disagreement (not a good idea) with a very senior, very well-respected (by everyone, including me) professor who says you can't tell a native speaker that they are pronouncing a word incorrectly because it is their native language, while I maintain that there is a correct pronunciation for each word and just because subgroups of people pronounce a word in a particular way doesn't make it the correct pronunciation, but I don't support my argument very well so I feel like a complete idiot and dwell on it for the rest of the day.

2:00-3:30, go back to office to discover that the computer has been fixed (at least temporarily), and I do some online research I needed to do before making a final decision about next semester's textbooks, fill out order forms for said textbooks, check emails, etc.

3:30, decide I don't want to stay in that office a minute longer even if it means taking work home, so I pack up the papers for two classes to grade at home, make stops at macy's and target on the way to return things I purchased on black friday.

6:30, actually arrived home at a reasonable hour, cooked dinner, and watched the telly, but did not grade papers.

2:30 am, to bed.

Saturday:

11:00 AM-2:00 AM, up, make bed, cook french toast for me, rugrat, her bf, watch tv, grade papers, blog a little, grade more papers, work on variable table for meeting with MFD committee persons next week, touch up grey roots, etc.

Sunday:

Clean apartment, do laundry, take out garbage and recycling.

If all paperwork is done on Saturday, will pull holiday decorations out of storage room in basement and let rugrat decorate the tree.

BTO, Takin' Care of Business:



(Yeah, I don't take the 8:15 into the city, but I do take the 8:20. I saw these guys in concert, probably about 1975-ish.)

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

apropos of nothing part deux

My former boss has kept me in his email list for political issues, and he just sent me this link to photos of Obama et al. on election night.

They are incredible. The ones prior to the acceptance ceremony are the best.