Monday, January 21, 2013

Overprepared? Nah, just planning ahead...

Although my laundry needs washed and is currently strewn across my room, there is a bag of trash waiting to be taken to the basement, my bed is unmade and piled six blankets high (for some reason, it's been freezing in my room lately), the stinkbugs continue to infest my room, and I am nowhere near packed to go back to school on Wednesday... I'm okay with this.  Life has treating me really well these past few weeks and months.

I mentioned in my last entry that I accepted one of the graduate assistantships I interviewed for earlier this month.  I'm really excited to work with this office, but also can't believe that this semester will be my last semester working for residence life.  It's been a journey, that's for sure.

For the Master's program I'm enrolled in, I have to complete two internships.  One is about 100 hours, the other is 600.  Even though I won't be completing the first of these internship experiences until fall, I met with a school counselor who works at a school 2 traffic lights away from my house.  I can be there in 5-10 minutes, depending on traffic... And I don't have to be there until 8:15 every morning (I'm not a morning person, what can I say?).  I like to plan these things well in advance, thus why I met with her so early.

While meeting with her, I also got to meet and get an autograph from Bryan Trottier, who is a former Pittsburgh Penguin.  Apparently, he lives in the area and also shops where I work part-time.  He's a really nice guy, and very down to earth.  Speaking of the Penguins, two friends and I got to attend the Black and Gold game (which was a free scrimmage game).  We arrived at the door 5 minutes before puck drop, and told it was standing room only.  We didn't mind, as we just wanted to see the game.  Needless to say, we found that the arena decided to open up box/suite seats, and we promptly found ourselves there.  They were fantastic seats, and we had an amazing time.

My last day of work for winter break was yesterday.  Although I woke up 10 minutes before I had to leave, I still made it on time, even stopping at the gas station to fill the tank a bit and get coffee.  (Unfortunately, I bumped the side mirror on a pole at the gas station - you know, the ones that are supposed to prevent people from ramming their car/truck/boat/vehicle of choice into the store?  Oops.  On the plus side, it just has some minor scratches and residual paint.  Nothing noteworthy.  And my mom was very understanding.  Phew.)  Overall, it was a nice last day.  Not too busy, some pretty nice customers, and my managers who I worked with are awesome.

This morning, I woke up at 6:58, waited to schedule summer courses, got into all of them in 15 seconds (record time), shut my computer, and rolled over and went back to bed for another three hours.  I have courses in research, career counseling, psychology of growth and development, and tests/measurements (which I had a course on in undergrad, but that professor has since retired).

I go back to school Wednesday evening after my dad's township supervisor's meeting for the last ever CA training I'll attend.  I can't believe that it's coming to a close, but it's been a great one.

On Thursday night, Vic and I are having dinner together, and I can't wait.  It's been since New Year's Day since we've seen each other.  I can't believe we've been dating for almost a year (it will be in February).  He makes me the happiest girl in the world.  We're also going to DC for a few days over spring break to celebrate our one year and our birthdays, since my birthday is the week before spring break and his is the week after.  We went together in May, and I can't wait to go again.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

GA Search, Take II: The End Result

If you read Wednesday's entry, you learned that I had two graduate assistantship interviews at my university on Thursday. Well, needless to say, I received offers for both positions at the close of each interview (!).  After mulling over both offers, talking to Vic and some of my other friends, and weighing my options, I made a decision.  This upcoming summer and fall, I will be working in my university's Peer Mentoring Office.  It was definitely the better match of the two.

It is 20 hours a week, compared to 30, which is wonderful because I can work on the days I will be scheduling classes for; in addition to being much more manageable in the fall when I not only have classes, but also a practicum (basically an abbreviated internship).  I have been a Peer Mentor since 2010 and have had 3 wonderful proteges while in the program.  I felt as though I could not give the other position, my internship, and classes all of the attention they all deserve.  Another great thing about working with this office is that I am able to work between the end of the summer term and the start of the fall term and bank those hours to use in fall, which is awesome.

The director, assistant director, and secretary in the office I'll be working with are, in a word, fantastic.  I'm really looking forward to working with all of them, the peer mentor coordinators, mentors, and proteges.

And I'm not going to lie, I'm also really looking forward to getting back to school.  Don't get me wrong, I love the free food, home-cooked meals, laundry, and making $7.50 an hour part-time, but I miss seeing friends and spending time, playing video games, and watching movies with Vic.

There's also the fact that at home I share a bathroom with my 18 year old brother and 60 year old father and I'm the one who gets stuck cleaning it because they really couldn't care less.  Vic, I know you're probably reading, thank you.  Thank you for not leaving my shower/bathroom disgusting at school when you use it.  I appreciate it more than you know.

These are the things I realize when I'm home for break, I suppose. That, and that my parents really need to organize their closet.  Apparently keeping the air mattress pump with the air mattress is a foreign concept.  I am also forever grateful for my mother for always harping on my about dental/oral health (she was a dental hygienist a long time ago, before she and my dad were married).  Apparently my kid brother has to have all sorts of dental work done because of some bone ailment with his teeth?

I don't know all of the details, nor do I care to, because that sort of stuff grosses me out.  The only dental work I've really had done are the extraction of two wisdom teeth a few summers ago and having braces in 4th/5th grade; because having glasses since the age of 5 isn't enough to deal with as a kid.  I joke, but seriously.  My eyes are worse than both of my parents', and I've been told that should I have children, their eyes should be checked starting at three.  Maybe it's a good thing Vic only wants kitties and a puppy, though we've discussed the idea of adoption.  Anyhow.

At least I'll know these things (such as staying organized and other things that probably seem ridiculous to me right now) for when I (officially) move out of my parents' house after graduation and that job search thing.  But I also know I won't be alone.  And that means more to me than anything.  <3

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Graduate Assistantship Search, Take II

By this time tomorrow, I'll have finished (or nearly finished) visiting two offices on campus to discuss working for them as a Graduate Assistant for the summer and fall semesters.  I've been involved with one of the offices as a peer mentor for the past three years, and the other is somewhat foreign to me.  It's with my university's college of education.  I was not an education major in undergrad, and I have only taken a single education course in my four years of undergrad and one semester of grad school.  (And I'm taking another in the spring.)

Therein lies my inner debate.  If I am offered a position at both offices, do I go for the comfort of knowing that I already have a working relationship with one office or see what could be the start of something different and new in the other?  I think I'll just wait until tomorrow to see what happens in this regard.

I'll also be going to the school my brother attended for fifth and sixth grade in two weeks to discuss the potential to work with the school counselor there as a practicum (intern) student during the fall semester.  Yes, I realize that the spring semester of this year hasn't even begun, nor have I gone through candidacy (which is how students in my program are officially accepted into the program)... But I'm trying to plan ahead best I can.

Classes start in a little under 3 weeks.  In the meantime, I'll just be working, hopefully spending a day in the city with Vic, going to a friend's house to celebrate her birthday, and something with the mother person.  She wants to do something before I go back to school.  What that something is... I haven't the slightest idea.  And, now that hockey is back (finally), watching some games.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

What a Year for a New Year

Every year, I consider making a list of resolutions for the new year, but I know they won't last:  start going to bed earlier so I can in turn get up earlier, eat healthier (even at 5'2"-ish and ~100 pounds, junk food and I are good friends), stay organized, save more money, etc.  When it comes down to it, though, I just want to be a better me...

Appreciate the things and people I have in my life.

Support the people I love and care about.

Be the best girlfriend, friend, sister, and daughter I can be.

Write letters or call people on the phone instead of sending text messages and emails.

Send birthday cards to people instead of writing a generic message on their Facebook wall.

Discover who I really am.

Cut the negativity out of my life.

Be a force for change in my own life.

As I read over this list again, one thing hits me:  it's all really simple.  But I think simple is okay.  I don't have any far-reaching goals.  The main things I want out of my life are to be happy, help others find out who they really are, and to marry my best friend.  And in some way, I think that achieving the above will help me do all of those things and more.

Last year at this time, I thought I was moving half-way across the country for grad school (which obviously didn't happen).  I never imagined that I'd be right back where I started for school (but I couldn't be happier).

I never thought that I would be in love with my best friend.  But you know what?  I am.  And I couldn't be happier.  He's what puts the smile on my face, makes me laugh until I cry, and is the best part of my life and I never want that to change.  I love you, boo.  You're the best.  I can't wait to spend the rest of my life with you.