Aug 29, 2012


Last week, since it was the last week before a couple of my friends started school, we decided to go over to Rhonda's house to watch 500 Days of Summer (which I thought was really awesome, btw. And that guy is one of my favorite actors). After it was over, we all sat around talking, and she remembered a couple books she wanted to give to me. They're about autopsies. I'm excited. :)

She also remembered that someone she works for had offered her a teaching job at DSST. She'd be teaching middle school and high school, for somwhere between 45 min and an hour and a half a day. She was all excited to teach this, because the teaching fit in really well between her classes, but then she found out that the place was 40 minutes away from her campus, so she wouldn't actually be able to do it. She then gave me the info and email address of the people I need to contact if I was interested in teaching.

The teaching job at the high school is a Tues/Wed/Fri job from 11:30-12:15, and at the middle school, it's Mon/Tues/Thurs/Fri from 3:05-3:45. Unfortunately, I just got my schedule for the next several months at Paul Derda, and it involves working on Monday from 3:45 to 8:15. So... That's not really going to work out if I'd only be done teaching at 3:45 on Mondays. Especially since teaching is out by the airport, and Rec Center is up in Broomfield. Fortunately, you can teach just high school or middle school, and since high school doesn't conflict with anything, that could still work.

I went in yesterday for an interview, and they're really excited to have someone as qualified as me. Haha. I wouldn't have ever considered myself qualified to teach in a high school. But they really like my teaching in China experience, and they love that I'm a chemistry major. It's exciting that they'd like me to do this, though, because I really was hoping to someday be a part time chemistry teacher in high school, and this will give me nice experience, and if I do well, they might actually high me someday as a chem teacher. Yay! I love it when life work out nicely.

All I have to do to be "officially hired" is take their background test, and that certainly won't be a problem. I'll be teaching anatomy/physiology, and it starts next week, and goes until the end of the 2nd full week in Nov. Maybe they'll ask me to stay for the rest of the year? Maybe they'll ask me to come back next year? We'll see. Per day, I get paid about $35. But I'm only teaching 45 minutes a day, so if you figure it out per hour, I get almost $46. Since I'll only be teaching 2 hours and 15 minutes a week, that doesn't equal out to much money total, but hey. How many people can say that, ever, they got paid $46/hr? :) That'll be fun to someday put down on my next job application.

I'm really excited, and super grateful. This time two weeks ago I had no jobs, and now I have two. And they're both jobs that I love, not just cleaning up around Target. But keeping the rock wall together and running. Teaching students, in a real school. I am so lucky.

Aug 25, 2012

What if I say that I'll never surrender?

So I've been thinking. Remember my goal to finish P90X before starting school, and I said I would start it that Monday? haha. That didn't happen. But I made a mental note to not fall behind and just do two workouts on Tuesday. And then I did one workout on Tuesday. Which is better than not doing either and being like, "I'll do THREE on Wed!" (At that point, you really just have to tell yourself to stop lying, it's not helpful to anyone). Still just one workout behind, I promised to do two on Wed.

I didn't do either. I thought a lot about doing one on Thursday, though, but decided that I would just count this belay class I was taking that night as my workout, and then do the extra workout I needed to squeeze in sometime Fri or Sat. Unfortunately, the class was so easy I couldn't call it a workout in good conscience. Time to scrap starting the workout that week and just start over again the following Monday. And then I got a brutal cold and cough, knocking me out until Wed. And I haven't convinced myself to start up again since...

I decided, though, that instead of making it my goal to finish P90X, I'd make it my goal to become fit. And I still hope to do P90X to help get there, but this way if I miss a couple days here and there, I might be messing up the minor goal of "Finish All Workouts," but I'm still doing fine as far as my end-goal is concerned. And the end-goal is really really the more important one.

So, in order to achieve my new end-goal, I've made a couple sub-goals.

1- We actually tend to eat out pretty often. It's crazy. And half of it is my own fault! There might be a lot of days where everyone's been at work all day, we haven't planned anything special for dinner, and there's only three of us at home, so it's just so nice and easy to grab some fast food for dinner really quick, but there's at least equal opportunities where I'm hanging out with friends and we decide to go out for lunch or dinner. It's terrible. So, in accordance with the rules of the nutrition half of P90X, I'm going to strive to not eat out more than 3x a week. Whether that's fast food or a real sit-down restaurant. Breakfast, lunch, dinner. Take out or deliver. And not more than one meal out a day. I hope there will be plenty of weeks where I don't hit the 3-meal limit.

2- Drink enough water each day. The rule to decide how much you're supposed to drink is half your body weight in ounces, yes? Yes. So I will start drinking that much. (I just spent quite a while contemplating actually stating how much water that would be. If I tell everyone, then it would only be a couple quick calculations for the curious to find out how much I weigh, which gives me really mixed feelings. If I don't tell you, then regardless of what the outcome is, I can still tell everyone that I'm happy with how things turned out and this is exactly where I saw myself being. Which might end up being true, but could also be a lie. But it gives the impression of success. If everyone knows how much I weigh-- or has the potential to know-- then you'd all be able to judge much easier how I'm doing on my goals. It would force me to try something and either have it work or have it fail. And if it fails, then I can't pretend that it worked. If I gave up, then I'd have to own that. But if it worked, then that would be real results I have. It would give the impression of honesty. So as uncomfortable as this prospect is, every ounce of logic I have is telling me it must be said.) That means I'm looking at about 2.75 Nalgenes a day. I feel like some days this will get rounded up to 3, and others it will be rounded down to 2.5. I find that acceptable.

3- Start up P90X again, starting Monday. I have everything all prepped up and ready to go. I'm actually going to get offline pretty soon here and clean my room, so I'll have enough space. Also, someone is coming to take pictures of the house, and so I should have clean rooms for that purpose, as well. Pending a day comes around where I'm having troubles motivating myself to do a full-on X workout, I will take Jack for a walk. I know that's incredibly less active, but it's better than just giving up for the day and feeling bad about myself. And, with him, I walk pretty briskly, so it would be enough that I wouldn't consider my day a workout-waste.

4- This one doesn't quite seem to fit on this list at first glance, but it really does when you think about it: Get off of electronics (defined as the computer and TV) by 9 pm. The thing is, during the day, when there's sunlight out, I can usually convince myself to do something productive. But when the sun sets (which I know is well before 9 at this time of year), I'm pretty much done doing anything productive. At that point, there will be no more cleaning or working out or cooking meals that take more than two minutes to make. At sunset, it's time to relax and enjoy some down time of watching TV, checking facebook, reading leisurely, whatever. But if I decide to get online or watch TV, I will not hesitate to stay there until 4 or 5 in the morning, regardless of how tired I am or how many hours it's been since I had something new to look at.
This way, I'm still allowing myself to have a couple hours to watch TV or be on facebook or iwastesomuchtime or dbpb, but after 9, I must get off of the electronics and read or write or sit and ponder life or stargaze or whatever. That way, when I actually get tired, I will go to sleep. The only exception is if I want to watch a movie before bed, but in that case, I'll start it by 8:30, and the TV goes off as soon as it's over.

Thus ends my list. This is how I intend to improve my health. Once I have all these things down, I can make higher goals (maybe try taking out junk food as well as fast food, and then someday move that on to eating healthy food, etc). But I've tried just jumping in before. And it's worked for weeks at a time, and I've seen it change my life, but I just stop. It's like I was only pretending to be healthy, I wasn't actually changing. Haha, as soon as I see any kind of improvement I think, "Oh, good! My 'new lifestyle' is working! Now I can ease back into my life of unhealthitude and STILL keep improving!" Hm. Not quite... But this is actually just changing and being healthier-- no more pretending.

Though, should I lose motivation, does anyone have any advice of how they kept themselves looking at the bigger goal?

Aug 20, 2012

Benefits of Knowing Your Way Around Campus

One of my friends just started college. A while back, while at work, she got desperately lost. It was a hilarious and sad story. And I've totally been there. I've been lost like that. She and I go to school on the same campus, so I cringed with sadness when I read about her going the COMPLETE OPPOSITE DIRECTION from where she needed to go. Especially because, if she had known where she was going, it would have been like a three minute walk.

Thankfully, now that I've been going to school there for a couple years, I know that campus like the back of my hand. So after reading her sad story, I texted her and told her how to get to all of her classes, and I also told her that if she ever gets lost again, she can text or call me and I'll help her. She could describe to me what she sees, and I would be able to tell her where to go. I've done so with mom and dad both before, so it really is something I could do. I could even tell her where some of the bathrooms are in some of the buildings.

[I have to say, this is an exciting thing to be able to offer for help, because I'm the youngest of 6. I've never had anyone who needed my knowledge before, but I've had many siblings help me out. With these exact same problems-- on the exact same campus-- for Chaelomen. So it was exciting to be all big-sister-ly for a little while.]

Today was the first day of class. I, clearly, am not doing classes this semester. At least, I think that's clear... I think I've mentioned it multiple times on this blog. So I had my phone not on silent, that way if she got lost, she could call and I would actually wake up.

So it happened that at 8:30, I indeed got a phone call. It started off just vibrating, which woke me up, and then I started flipping out. Kylee is lost! Kylee is lost! I have to answer the phone! I have to be conscious enough to help her! And MOST IMPORTANTLY, I have to go upstairs where I won't have really shoddy service! I sit up, flailing everywhere, trying to do several things at once. Find phone. Stand up. Get blanket off. Stand up. Find phone!

I end up throwing my phone to the foot of the couch, and once I have it in my possession again, I have to turn to run upstairs and answer before it goes to voice mail! Must help Kylee before she is late for class! And so, of course, instead of keeping a firm grip on it as I turn, I toss it in the air, and it falls between the couch and the wall! Bah! I go diving after it, and when I finally have it in hand, I actually look at the phone (to make sure the battery didn't get disconnected a little bit, which would make the phone turn off and on, and I would lose the call). The phone stayed in tact, but I realize-- I have no idea what number this is.

And I have Kylee's phone number. There's no where else she'd be calling from.


And it was. I started today (just filling out payroll paperwork and getting fingerprints done), and hopefully my boss will email me back soon, telling me when they want me to work next. Because I sure would hate to show up late or not at all to my first day of work. That would be embarrassing. And probably not be so good for the whole "keeping a job" thing.

And so, on my list of things to get done before starting up school again in a year, I have one thing down. :) And progress is being made on the rest of them... mostly.

Side note-- Kylee did text me later, and since I got the phone call, I was already awake and could answer. She wasn't late or lost or anything, but she was concerned about a lack of people in her classroom. What a great day. I hope she enjoyed her first day, as well.

Aug 15, 2012

Today's the day.

Back in spring semester, I took a Chinese language class. We had to memorize Chinese characters. It wasn't difficult, but we had a lot of homework consisting of nothing but writing dialogues and vocab. Because it wasn't difficult, I got really bored really quick. But I had to keep doing it because I needed the practice. Determined that I would not be sitting here writing Chinese characters for hours on end for nothing, I filled out an application to go back to China as a head teacher. This was in January.

Later that week, I got an email telling me that they're working on filling in all the head teachers they'll need this fall, so it will be May or so before I hear back from them. Totally understandable, I don't mind at all. In fact, I really appreciate that a significant period of time would pass before anyone tried to contact me again, so THEY TOLD ME. Such a professional and considerate thing to do. That should just flat out be the way things are done. But I'm getting off topic.

May or so rolls around and they contact me, and I have my interviews with Casey. Everything is fine and dandy. My prospects of going back to China for spring semester 2013 are looking very promising. I read all the preparatory packets, I contact Michelle about setting up a time where we can go over the documents packet, and everything is moving along nicely. At this point, I'm not thinking it should be too long before I have the names of my teachers. Wanting to get a good time table, though, I ask how long it will be before I know if I made it into the program again, and I find out it will actually be about two months.

Two months pass, to the day, yet I haven't heard back from either Michelle or Casey (or anyone else, for that matter). I'm starting to get nervous, but Michelle said about two months, and even that was a guess. So they haven't actually left me hanging longer than normal. The thing is that I'm just so excited at this point that I'll be able to go back to China, and not hearing back makes me worried. So I take the advice of my mom and my good friend Kylee, and I drop Michelle an email that just asks about how the process is going and tells her that I'm getting really excited but also a little nervous. This email was sent six days after my "two month" mark.

In fact, I sent that email two weeks ago today. I didn't ask her to tell me if I was going. I didn't ask her to tell me if I wasn't going. I said, and I quote, "I was just wondering if there was any news about head teaching this spring, or if Casey was any closer to figuring everything out." That's it. Maybe to other people that sounds like I want a solid answer or no answer at all, but that wasn't my intent. And I don't honestly think it sounds like that was my intent. All I was really looking for was a quick response that said something like, "I'm so sorry, we've just been really busy these past couple months. We haven't forgotten you, though! It'll probably be about another --- days/weeks/months."

That response would have been perfect. Instead, I didn't get any answer. It's been two weeks, and I didn't even get an acknowledgement that I emailed them. Which would lead me to believe that she might not have gotten my email, but that's never been the case in the past, so I don't know why it would be now (I'm a fan of using past experience to determine what the likely outcome now is). But, even if she didn't get my email, it's been almost 3 months since she originally told me that it would be about two, and I haven't gotten an answer yet.

To be perfectly honest, I don't care one way or the other if I go back. There are pros and cons to both, but I really feel as though it works out completely evenly. If I go: I get to experience authentic Chinese food again; I'll be able to see my kids again (probably); my job will be waiting for me when I get back home (assuming I get the job in the first place, which I am assuming); and I'll be able to make new friends and show them exactly what there is to love about China. If I stay: I can move out sooner; I'll be able to work at a job that I already love without having to take any time off; I don't have to leave Jack or Leonard; and maintaining new friendships that I've recently made will be much easier.

Both lives sound really perfect. And I prayed about it for weeks, if not months, on end, and either option will work out just fine for me. Which is great news! It's not like going back to China was the only thing I could envision doing with my life, and now I'm stuck, wondering what to do with myself. I have great plans either way. But that makes it annoying, too. I have many great plans I want to pursue, but can't because I don't know what I'm doing yet.

If I go back, then I will get a job, buy things to take with me, save up money and then go and come home and save up more money for a little while and move out in about a year, maybe 11 months. If I stay, then I will get a job, get enough hours, and move out in 2-3 months. On one hand, I need to go out and buy food and notebooks and pens and start talking to my teachers to prepare them, and tell them what school supplies to buy, etc. On the other hand, I need to buy things I'll need around the house-- spatulas, kitchen table, etc-- and start saving up money to put down a deposit. It would be straight up dumb to do both of these things. So I'm at a standstill with my life until I find out if I'm leaving or staying in the country.

Which is why I decided last Saturday that if I don't hear back from them today (Wed), then I'll email them myself and retract my application. Part of me wishes that they would call right now and tell me they want me as a head teacher because I was so excited to be able to go back to China. And I'm pretty sure that if I don't go back now, I never will-- at least not to live. But there's another part of me (and this part is nearly positive that I'll be emailing ILP in 8-10 hours to tell them I'll just stay here) that's glad they haven't gotten back to me yet, because as much as I'd love to leave again, it really just makes so much more sense to stay here. Plus it'll be easier, and I think I'll be nearly just as happy.

I guess, since I'm not going to be living outside America for a while, it's time to start saving up money for some awesome vacations. First on the list: skiing in Chile and Argentina. :)
And by "skiing," I probably mean "snowboarding."
And by "snowboarding," I probably mean "failing terribly at snowboarding."
It's gonna be awesome.

Aug 14, 2012

This too shall pass.

Am I the only one who didn't know that quote doesn't actually come from the Bible anywhere?

Haha. I'm awesome. I googled it. Apparently it comes from some story about King Solomon, not from a real quote. I, for some reason, thought it was something Christ said. My bad.

I still think it's a cool quote, though.

But seriously... Was it just me?

Well, I actually have to go get dressed so I can take a voice stress test... So close to getting this job! I can taste it. <3

Aug 5, 2012

Is there anyone alive out there?

You know that part of Titanic where they finally decide to go back and check the bodies to see if anyone's alive? And the guy's just sitting there shouting, "Is there anyone alive out there? Can anyone hear me?" for like five solid minutes of the movie?

That's kinda how blogging feels right now.

[I had to describe that scene because I couldn't find a video I liked enough to link to it... but I did find this. ha. I kinda liked it.]

I mean, I feel like I'm the only one blogging anymore. Except my awesome friend Kylee. And mom, but the last 7 out of 9 of her posts have been about blankets :) Also, I live with her, so I already know the majority of what her blogs are about. And while I enjoy reading them anyway, it's just not quite the same as having a blog to read from someone I don't live with.

Part of me wonders if it's really that people are blogging less, or is it just that I'm out of school and so therefore have nothing to do and check people's blogs more? So I did some research.
The last time Sarah blogged: 2 weeks ago, July 22nd. Except La Domestica, that was 2 years ago (April 29th). And yes, I still check that. haha.
MJ: 3 weeks ago, July 14th.
Wizard: 2 months ago, May 22nd.
Shinobi: 2 months ago, May 11th.
Carebear/Frik: 4 months ago, March 16th.
Chaelomen: 8 months ago, December 5th.
Scooter: 1 year ago, June 29th.

I think people are really blogging less. Actually, I deem Sarah to have blogged recently enough. And MJ is close.

There was once a time where I would go a month or so forgetting to check up on people's blogs, and then I'd go through and look at everything, and it would take me hours to get caught up. I miss the days. Where'd you all go? I mean, what, did you all up and get married/ find interesting jobs/ have kids? Guess I'll never know, since you all never blog. And I clearly can't just see you in real life.

Mm. Maybe I just need a new hobby. Or a better book to distract me from reality.

Aug 2, 2012

"I'd rather be pissed off then pissed on."

Whenever I get on facebook, I notice someone updated their status, and it says:
"you know your in love when hes the only person you really wanna talk to."
"Anyone wanna buy fresh eggs my mom has to get rid of them she has to many :P"
"I wish I could sleep more but my lil kiddo has to lay on my blatter lol" Bleh... that one makes me shudder.

I really just want to comment and be like:
"*you're. *he's."
"You need a period after both 'eggs' and 'them.' *too."
"Comma after more. Lie, not lay. Bladder has d's, not t's."
And I'll just leave "lil" alone... Mostly because I think li'l looks dumb, and I don't accept that's it's even a word. Just say little.

Does anyone else have this problem? Maybe it's just me... I probably need to get rid of some of my facebook friends. Especially the one who made the errors at the top of the list there. Please. I seriously doubt that's how you "know you're in love."

Then later, I go through some of my old blog posts. You know, just to reminisce about life. As I read, I find that I, myself, have accidentally typed in:

-knew instead of new.
-their instead of they're.
-half instead of have.
-and some other horrible horrible homonym-exchanges, which makes me roll my eyes at myself.

When that happens, I usually feel really ashamed that I would make such an error. I know better. I actually do know the difference between their they're and there, fewer and less, then and than, etc. Just knowing that all my family and many of my friends have seen my failure is an embarrassment, and I really hope that everyone knows that I'm smarter than that, that it was just a typo.

And that usually leads me to wonder if my facebook friends have the same thoughts. Maybe I shouldn't be so quick to judge and hate on them for their typos, since I've done the same stupid things. Don't we all make mistakes? Just because they have a typo doesn't mean they don't deserve my respect. [Heh. Double negative.]

So, as an apology, I go to their facebook pages, and I read through their old status updates and picture comments... and I see they have the same grammatical and spelling errors repeated constantly.

This is about the time I realize that it's not just a typo for them. It's actually just something they don't understand. As evidenced by the fact that their bad grammar/spelling is everywhere. The same mistakes over and over and over. Even when other people try to help them. Haha.

Oh well. They're good people. They usually have intelligent things to say, even if they aren't saying it intelligently.